Page:A Voyage to Terra Australis Volume 1.djvu/57

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North Coast: Torres' Strait.]
xxxv
INTRODUCTION.

Bampton and
Alt
1793.

account of the missing boat and people. A shower of arrows instantly came out of the wood; and a firing was commenced, which killed one Indian, and wounded some others. In the mean time, the coxswain found it impossible to keep the man, from his hair and body being greased; and the boat's crew was too much occupied to assist him.

July 8. The two commanders having heard the report of Mr. Dell, proceeded with the ships, round the northern reefs and sand banks, to the bay on the north-west side of Darnley's Island, which was named Treacherous Bay. On the 9th, in the afternoon, they anchored with springs on the cables, in 13 fathoms, sand, mud, and shells; the extremes of the island bearing E. ½N. to S. W. by S., and the nearest part distant a quarter of a mile. A boat was sent on shore; and returned, at sunset, with a few cocoa nuts; but without having seen any of the inhabitants.

July 10. An armed party of forty-four men landed from the ships, under the command of Mr. Dell. After hoisting the union jack, and taking possession of this, and the neighbouring islands and coast of New Guinea, in the name of His Majesty, they examined the huts, and found the great coats of captain Hill, Mr. Carter, and Mr. Shaw; with several other things which had belonged to them, and to the boats' crew; so that no doubt was entertained of their having been murdered. In the evening, the party arrived from making the tour of the island; having burnt and destroyed one-hundred-and-thirty-five huts; sixteen canoes, measuring from fifty to seventy feet in length; and various plantations of sugar cane. The natives appeared to have retired to the hills in the centre of the island; as not one of them could be discovered.

Darnley's Island was judged to be about fifteen miles in circumference. It is variegated with hills and plains; and the richness of the vegetation bespoke it to be very fertile; it appeared, however, to be scantily supplied with fresh water, there being only one small

place where it was found near the shore. The plantations of the