GOVERNMENT AND GENERAL ORDERS.
COLONIAL SECRETARY'S OFFICE,
15th December, 1821. Civil Department.
THE following REPORT, having been transmitted
to the GOVERNOR by Major General MACQUARIE, His Excellency has much Pleasure in directing the
same to be published.
By Command of His Excellency,
F. GOULBURN, Colonial Secretary.
" Sydney, New South Wales, " SIR, 10th December, 1821.
" IN Obedience to Your Excellency's Commands to proceed in the Government Colonial Cutter Snapper, to examine the Coast to the Southward of' Jervis' Bay, to ascertain if a River fell into the Sea, near that Place ;
' I beg Leave to report to Your Excellency, that I arrived off Jervis' Bay on the 29th ultimo, and having closely examined the Line of Coast in the Snapper's Boat, as far South as Bateman Bay, without succeeding in my Object, I returned on board, and determined upon running into that Bay to examine it, and accord- ingly anchored the Snapper on the 30th ultimo, under the Westermost Island, in 3½ Fathoms Water, fine sandy Bottom (I called it, after the Name of the Vessel, " Snapper Island.") Shortly after, I perceived an inlet in the Head of the Bay, bearing per Compass N. W. by W. ½W. distant 2 ½ Miles ; and which I have the Satisfaction to report to Your Excellency, proved to be the Entrance of a fine, clear, capacious River, having a Bar, over which I carried nine feet Water, and then deepened gradually in the Space of half a mile to six Fathoms, from whence I carried regular Soundings from four to seven Fathoms, the Distance of twenty-five Miles, and then encamped for the Night on the Western Bank. Considering this to be a Dis- covery, I named it " River Clyde."
" On my Way up I saw several Native Fires near the Banks. At one Place I landed, taking with me the two Natives who accompanied me from Sydney, upon which we were met by a Tribe of them, who shewed no Symptoms of Hostility towards us, but entered freely into Conversation ; and, through my Interpreters, I learnt the Particulars of the melancholy Loss of Mr. Stewart and his Boat's Crew ; as also of a Man by the Name of Briggs, and his Companions, who some Time since deserted from the Colony in a Whale Boat; viz. Stewart, losing his Boat near Two-fold Bay, was en- deavouring to make his Way back by Land, in which Effort he was cut off by the Natives of Two-fold Bay. Briggs, and his Companions, were lost in Bateman Bay, by the Boat having upset ; and being so far from the Land, were not able to reach the Shore. This was the Account received from them ; but, from my own Ob- servations, seeing Knives, Tomahawks, and Part of the Boats' Geer in their Huts, I am induced to think they suffered the same Fate as the unfortunate Stewart.
" The next Morning, following the Course of the River, I proceeded about ten Miles further, when the Rapids commence having from two to three feet Water, over a stony Ford, which, from the Heaviness of the Boat, I am sorry to say put a Termination to my proceeding any further, but I could perceive that the River again deepened, having a fine Reach run- ning to the N. W. as far as I could discern. From the Entrance, to the Distance of fifteen Miles, the Banks of the River appear to be good Forest Land ; from whence it assumes a different Appearance, being much lower, and better adapted, for Cultivation. On the Evening of the 2nd Inst, having returned on board, the Examination of the River and Bay occupied me until the 4th ; and should it please the Government to establish a Settlement on the Banks of this River, I have no hesitation in saying, that Communication can at all Times be had with such a Settlement, as Boats can land on either Side of the Bay, should the Sea make the Bar impassable.
*' Leaving Bateman Bay on the Afternoon of the 4th Instant, I proceeded to the Northward for Port Macquarie, off which Place I arrived on the Night of the 7th Inst. and the next Morning ran close in along Shore, agreeable to Your Excellency's Directions, to ascertain whether there was a Bay that Ships could ride in with Safety, as had been reported to you ; in Pur- suance of which, I explored as far North, as Smokey Cape; and beg to report, that there is no Bay or Harbour, within that Line of Coast, that Ships can lay with Safety in. With this, I transmit for Your Excellency's Information a Sketch of Bateman Bay, and the River Clyde, which perhaps, together with my Report, Your Excellency will do me the Honor to communicate to His Excellency Governor Sir THOMAS BRISBANE trusting my Exertions in this small Ex- pedition, and the fortunate Result thereof, will meet with your Approbation.
"I have the Honor to subscribe myself,
Your Excellency's obliged humble Servant,
" ROBERT JOHNSTON."
To His Excellency Major General} Macquarie, &C. &C. &C