Page:The aborigines of Australia.djvu/116

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.
103
MANLY COVE AND RUSHCUTTERS BAY.

it was that, a day or two after the arrival of the fleet in Botany Bay, the boats despatched by the Commodore for the purpose of exploring Port Jackson; previous to transferring the fleet thence, were surrounded by a number of aborigines, who waded into the water, and, after examining the boats and scrutinizing everything they saw, received whatever presents were offered them, and returned highly pleased. The frank, fearless, and manly bearing of the New Hollanders on this occasion suggested to the good taste of the first Governor the name which the spot bears to the present day. It is to be regretted that the other locality should not have received its designation from circumstances similarly auspicious and similarly pleasing to all parties. But as in the best plays of the great dramatist the serious succeeds to the comic, and tears give place to laughter, so in the two matters under consideration a tragic occurrence succeeds to a serio-comic scene, and as the one gave a name to Manly Beach, so the other conferred on the locality where the occurrence took place the appellation which it retains to the present day. No sooner had the site of the new city been chosen, at the head of Sydney Cove, than the workmen of the colony were set about constructing cottages and barracks for the reception of the several classes of people of which the infant community was composed. Wood and stone were to be found in abundance in the immediate vicinity, so that little difficulty stood in the way of the performance of the