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THE

WESTERN AUSTRALIAN

JOURNAL.

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 3, 1836.

———ooo———

" Neither conscience nor taste will suffer me to fight one class or interest against another, for separate benefit, or to take the narrow ground of undeviating panegyric"

The arrangements alluded to by us last week for the formation of a Colonial Whaling establishment on this coast, have been completed during the week, and every necessary preparation, it is in- tended, shall be made in time to bring the scheme into operation at the com- mencement of the next season, which, it may be considered, is about the begin- ning of June. Captain Coulton, of the Truelove, will return with his vessel to this port, and will take an active part in the practical part of this enterprise.

When, we consider, that all the sup- plies for flour, meat, and other neces-

saries, will be drawn from this colony,

and that the formation of an establish-

ment of this description will consequent- ly tend to more extended speculations of the same nature,—which will afford an   accumulating demand for the products of

our farms,—we can but congratulate ourselves that at length we have found means to set it on foot, on a scale calcu-   lated to insure success. That a prefer-

ence will be given to the productions of   this colony, in obtaining supplies, we are warranted in inferring from the fact, that it is in contemplation, at an early period,

to advertise for tenders of such articles

as may be required, to be delivered on or before the commencement of the season ; and we hope the result will prove, that we have no need of reference to the neigh-     bouring colonies.

That this scheme will be productive of immense profit, under proper manage- ment, there is not the slightest reason to doubt ; our opinion is formed, not alone from personal experience, but from the concurrent testimony of every nautical person who has visited this coast during the proper season.

With reference to the season, there is every reason to believe that it comprises the months of June to October, inclusive. The Monkey, (Captain Pace), was in Shark's Bay for three weeks, in the month of September, 1834, during which time, we are informed by Mr. T. Hunt, who was one of the party commis- sioned by the Governor to search for the wreck of the Mercury, (the object of the Monkey's visit to the bay), there were innumerable whales seen. They are now numerous about this port and the Murray, and will, no doubt, continue so, and will probably fall off in numbers during the month of October, but not so far as to end the season until the expira-

tion of the month.

It may be of importance to notice here   the account Mr. Hunt gives of Shark's Bay as being adapted for a whaling station ; and we give it with greater confidence, as he was for some time the superintendent of a fishery at the Cape of Good Hope.  

Under Dirk Hartog's Island there is as good an anchorage as can be required,  

and it is well sheltered. The whales

seen were the black species. The sharks were in such abundance, that he is of opinion they might be caught in suf- ficient quantities to render their tails and fins, which are much esteemed in China, deserving attention as an export. The long pearl oyster, as well as the silver oyster, were also numerous. The hawk's bill turtle, so much valued for its shell, was found here, but not in so great abundance as the green turtle. Of fish, there were red and other mullet, in shoals, and a fish similar to the highly prized ton-fish of Italy. From this ac- count, which, we again repeat, may be relied on, it will be seen, that the time which can be spared from the pursuit of whaling, may be profitably applied to other lucrative sources of employment The Malays from Borneo, we are in- formed, visit the northern extremity of the coast, and carry on a profitable trade

in shells and other natural productions and from their frequent visits, it is sup- posed, drive the hawk's-bill turtle down to the lowest range of the coast; which affords a congenial climate,—most pro- bably terminating at Shark's Bay.

We would advise our colonists to re- gard these particulars with some atten- tion, otherwise the prize which is within our reach will be earned off by strangers;

and to the Government we would ear- nestly recommend an early survey of Shark's Bay, and of Dirk Hartog's Is- land.  

Preparations are making for the expedition to the eastward, under the guidance of the Surveyor-General, Hon. J. S. Roe, Esq., accompanied by the Hon. G. F. Moore, Esq., in search of the supposed lake, or inland sea, denominat- ed by the natives the Molyean.

————————————        

The 'Eagle' was five weeks and a   half in making her passage from the Mauritius, and encountered some boister- ous gales, in one of which she was struck by a heavy sea, and was mate- rially injured. She is now lying in Cockburn Sound, and it is expected a survey will be held before she can again put to sea. The owner, Mr. Pratt, is gone into the interior, on an excursion, and only started the day before her arri- val.

The native children, of late, have re- ceived instruction from various sources, and, in some cases, not from the most en- lightened of our community, although they have proved competent teachers in the particular branch of education to which they have applied their attention. To our great astonishment, our ears were assailed the other day, with portions of that monstrous song,

" Hoky, Poky, Wonky, Fum," &c.,  

from the mouth of a little black urchin, who, on our inquiry where she learnt it, with the readiness of a London tactition-  

er, evaded the question with a Quaker's

answer—" What's o'clock ?" Now we  

must protest against this system of edu- cation, which is founded on a vocabulary   of the real vernacular of St. Giles' and  

the lowest stews of London. It is really disgraceful to the parties who have

taught the natives the oaths and obscene expressions it is now customary to hear   them repeat ; and we can but pronounce   the mind, which derives amusement from hearing these poor creatures make use of   such language, as sorely debased, and  

sunk into a meanness and imbecility of spirit unbecoming the character of the superiority we assume over the savage.

Having given this picture of depravity, we must in justice notice, that there ap- pear to be other teachers abroad of a different character ; for we have heard children repeating the ABC with their

native chant.

Another circumstance connected with the treatment of the natives has come under our observation,—namely, the practice of giving them 'grog,' or spirits. We saw the native 'Naral' staggering drunk a few days ago. It is a disgrace to the parties who were the occasion of this disgusting exhibition.

The following extract from a work   published in 1793, giving a complete ac- count of the first settlement at Port Jack- son up to 1791 (four years after its es- tablishment) may be read with advantage by those who are impatient of returns from small beginnings. We should be much gratified to obtain a description of the same spot and vicinity at the present day, and to be made acquainted with the value of the property, where the Hessian "more than once shook his head, and   made some mortifying observations on

the soil." One or other of our contem- poraries at Sydney may consider this subject deserving a passing notice. For our own part, we have been induced to occupy so much of our space with this extract, as an incentive to exertion and steadiness of purpose,which,coupled with sobriety, is the main requisite to form a successful settler. We are happy to state that the number of our neighbours who require any incentive is but small ; to them, however, it may prove amus- ing.

" December 7, 1791.—Went to Scheffer's farm. I found him at home, conversed with him, and walked with him over all his cultivated ground. He had one hundred and forty acres granted to him, fourteen of which are in cultivation, twelve in maize, one in wheat, and one in vines and tobac- co. He has besides twenty-three acres, on which the trees are cut down, but not burnt off the land. He resigned his appointment, and began his farm last May ; and had at first five convicts to assist him : he has now four. All his maize, except 3 acres, is mean. This he thinks may be attributed to three causes : a middling soil, too dry a spring, and from the ground not being sufficiently pul- verized before the seed was put in it. The wheat is thin and poor : he does not reckon its produce at more than eight or nine bushels. His vines, nine hundred in number, are flourishing, and will, he supposes, bear fruit next year. His tobacco plants are not very luxuriant : to these two last plants he means principally to direct his attention. He says (and truly) that they will always be sale- able and profitable. On one of the boundaries of his land is plenty of water. A very good brick house is nearly completed for his use, by the go- vernor; and in the mean time he lives in a very decent one, which was built for him on his settling here. He. is to be supplied with provisions from the public store, and with medical assistance for   eighteen months, reckoning from last May. At the expiration of this period he is bound to support himself ; and the four convicts are to be withdrawn. But if he shall then, or at any future period, de-

clare himself able to maintain a moderate number  

of these people for their labour, they will be assign-  

ed to him.

" Mr. Scheffer is a man of industry and respect- able character. He came out to this country as a

superintendent of convicts, at a salary of forty   pounds per annum ; and brought with him a daughter of twelve years old. He is by birth a Hessian, and served in America, in a corps of Yaghers, with the rank of lieutenant. He never was professionally, in any part of life, a farmer, but he told me his father owned a small estate on the banks of the Rhine, on which he resided, and that he had always been fond of looking at, and assisting in his labours, particularly in the vine- yard. In walking along, he more than once shook his head, and made some mortifying ob- servations of the soil of his present domain, com- pared with the banks of his native stream. He assured me that (exclusive of the sacrifice of his salary) he has expended more than forty pounds, in advancing his ground to a state in which I saw it. Of the probability of success in his undertak- ing, he spoke with moderation and good sense. Sometimes he said he had almost despaired, and had often balanced about relinquishing it ; but had often been checked by recollecting, that hardly any difficulty can arise, which vigour and perse- verance will not overcome. I asked him what was the tenure on which he held his estate. He offer- ed to shew the written document, saying, that it was exactly the same as Ruse's. I therefore de- clined to trouble him, and took my leave, with wishes for his success and prosperity.

" Near Mr Scheffer's farm, is a small patch of land, cleared by Lieutenant Townson, of the New South Wales corps, about two acres of which are in maize and wheat, both looking very bad.  

" Proceeded to the farm of Mr. Arndell, one of the assistant surgeons. This gentleman has six acres in cultivation, as follows : rather more than four in maize, one in wheat, and the remainder in oats and barley ; the wheat looks tolerably good, rather thin, but of a good height, and the ears well filled. His farming servant guesses the pro- duce will be twelve bushels, and I do not think he overrates it. The maize he guesses at thirty bushels, which, from appearances, it may yield, but not more. The oats and barley are not con- temptible ; this ground has been turned up but once ; the aspect of it is nearly south, on a declivi- ty of the river, or arm of the sea, on which Para- matta stands : it was cleared of wood about nine months ago, and sown this year for the first time.

"December 8.— Went this morning to the farm of Christopher Magee, a convict settler, nearly oppose to that of Mr. Scheffer. The situation of this farm is very eligible, provided the river in floods does not inundate it, which I think doubtful

This man was bred to husbandry, and lived eight years in America ; he has no less than eight acres in cultivation, five and a half in maize, one in wheat, and one and a half in tobacco. From the   wheat he does not expect more than ten bushels ; but he is extravagant enough to rate the produce   of maize at one hundred bushels ; perhaps he may get fifty ; on tobacco, he means to go largely hereafter. He began to clear this ground in April, but did not settle until last July. I asked by what means he had been able to accomplish so much? He answered, "by industry, and by hiring all the convicts I could get lo work in their leisure hours, besides some little assistance which the governor has occasionally thrown in." He sunk a well and found water, but it was brackish, and not fit to drink. If this man shall continue in

habits of industry and sobriety, I think him sure of succeeding.

" Reached Ruse's farm, and begged to look at his grant, the material part of which runs thus :—   A lot of thirty acres, to be called Experiment Farm ; the said lot to be holden, free of all taxes, quit-rents, &c, for ten years, provided that the occupier, his heirs or assigns, shall reside within   the same, and proceed to the improvement there- of ; reserving, however, for the use of the crown, all timber now growing, or which hereafter shall grow fit for naval purposes ; at the expiration of ten years, an annual quit-rent of one shilling shall be paid by the occupier in acknowledgement.—     Ruse now lives in a comfortable brick house, built     for him by the governor. He has eleven acres in cultivation, and several more which have been cleared by convicts in their leisure hours, on con- dition of receiving the first year's crop. He means   to cultivate little besides maize ; wheat is so much   less productive. Of the culture of tobacco and vineyards, he is ignorant ; and with great good sense, he declared, that he would not quit the   path he knew, for an uncertainty. His livestock consists of four breeding sows, and thirty fowls. He has been taking from the store (that is, has supplied himself with provisions) for some months past ; and his wife is to be taken off at Christmas, at which time, if he deems himself able to maintain a convict labourer, one is to be given to him.

" Crossed the river in a boat to Robert Webb's   farm. This man was one of the seamen of the Sirius, and has taken, in conjunction with his bro- ther, (also a seaman of the same ship), a grant of sixty acres, on the same terms as Ruse, save that the annual quit-rent is to commence at the expira- tion of five years, instead of ten. The brother is gone to England, to receive the wages due to them both for their services, which money is to be ex- pended by him, in whatever he judges will be most conducive to the success of their plan. Webb ex-   pects to do well ; talks as a man should talk who has just set out on a doubtful enterprise, which he is bound to pursue ; he is sanguine in hope, and looks only at the bright side of the prospect ; he has received great encouragement and assistance from the governor. He has five acres cleared and planted with maize, which looks thriving, and promises to yield a decent crop. His house, and a small one adjoining for pigs and poultry, were built for him by the governor, who also gave him two sows and seven fowls, to which he adds a lit- tle stock of his own acquiring.

" Near Webb, is placed William Read, another seaman of the Sirius, on the same terms, and to whom equal encouragement has been granted,"

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