Page:Picturesque New Guinea.djvu/275

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101
MR. CHALMERS' NARRATIVE.

sorts, restless, and no appetite. It was evident from his appearance, also, he was in the first stage of fever. Fearing he might grow worse, I suggested that if not better in the morning we should return; Mr. Forbes and I remain at South Cape, and he with the "Blackall" proceed at once to Australia. He decidedly objected to go back until he had been to the Boundary or Mitre Rock. On the 22nd we steamed close in shore through Bentley Bay, Bartle Bay, Goodenough Bay to Rawden Bay, where we had anchored. The coast all along these bays looks poor indeed, much worse even than that about Port Moresby. In many places the mountains run steep to the sea, and in no place we saw could settlement be made. Two peaks not on charts, but standing out and well defined, we named Lady Scratchley Peak and Mount Service, and the nomenclature has since been reported to the Royal Geographical Society. I again suggested to the General we should at once return and hurry on to Australia, but to no effect, as he insisted on seeing Mitre Rock.

On the 23rd we rounded Cape Vogel to the Jabbering Islands, where we anchored. We spent several hours ashore with the natives, climbing the sandstone cliffs, and walking back into the country, which was poor, and terribly burned up for want of rain. The natives were very noisy, and yet very friendly. Their houses were small, miserable huts, built on posts, with small verandahs on the side, on which cooking was done. They have earthenware pots as in other parts, in shape similar to Teste Island. On the morning of the 24th we were away from our Jabbering friends, through Collingwood Bay, keeping close in round Hardy Point to Cape Nelson, and passing many good harbours, one of which we named Fort Harbour after our hearty, pleasant friend, the private secretary, whose life seemed entirely devoted to the General. When in good health, he and the General appeared as if father and son; the General becoming sick, Fort, as a son, nursed him day and night, assisted by Dr. Glanville. Only when Fort was near the cot was the General satisfied.

Two very high mountains seen to-day, and position taken, were named Mount Romilly and Mount Ross, the former after the well-