Page:The new British province of South Australia.djvu/50

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.
31
SOUTH AUSTRALIA.

exactly in the middle of the mouth of the port, leaves on each side a passage from two to three miles broad, in both which passages a vessel can work with ease and security. Finally, as if nature were inclined, in favour of Champagny Port (Port Lincoln), to change the character of monotony and barrenness stamped on the neighbouring lands, she has formed its shores of gently-rising slopes, and clothed them with umbrageous forests. We did not find any fresh water at this spot; but the vigour and liveliness of vegetation, and the height of the country, to us were certain indices of the existence of some rivulets, or at least of some copious springs. On this the most favoured part of 'Napoleon Land' (South Australia), there are certainly numerous tribes of inhabitants, for the whole country seemed in flames. So many exclusive advantages insure special importance to Port Champagny (Port Lincoln), and I may fearlessly affirm that, of all the points of this land, this is the best adapted for the establishment of an European colony."

The second visit of the same party was made a few weeks later, when the impression in favour of this spot appears to have been heightened. The subjoined statement was then given of the harbour:—

"This harbour consists of three basins, in each of which there is not less than ten to twelve fathoms (French) water, with a bottom of muddy sand, and which, from their extent, would be capable of receiving the navies of all Europe. Boston Island is at the mouth of this admirable port, and it forms, with the continent, two passages, in each of which the largest ships of war might work with safety. The northern passage is the narrowest, and opens into Boston Bay; the southern is larger, and opens on one side into the western basin, and on the other into Spalding Cove. Between the island and the main land is the channel Degerando, which establishes a direct communication between the three basins, and which at the same time offers excellent moorings for the