Project Gutenberg's The Last Voyage, by Lady (Annie Allnutt) Brassey

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Title: The Last Voyage
       to India and Australia, in the 'Sunbeam'

Author: Lady (Annie Allnutt) Brassey

Illustrator: R.T. Pritchett

Release Date: August 24, 2009 [EBook #29778]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


Produced by Steven Gibbs, Linda Cantoni, and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at This
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Transcriber's Note: Many illustration captions are missing from the original. These captions have been added in as they appear in the List of Illustrations, and all captions have been conformed to the List of Illustrations. Some illustrations have been moved so as to avoid breaking up the text; links in the List of Illustrations are to the actual locations of the illustrations.

The original contains a number of alternate spellings of proper nouns (e.g., Vasco de Gama for Vasco da Gama; Tawomba for Toowomba; Warrangarra for Wallangarra). These have been preserved as they appear in the original. Otherwise, obvious printer errors have been corrected. Where it is not clear whether something is an error, the questionable text is marked with dotted red underlining, and a pop-up Transcriber's Note has been provided.






Lady Brassey.


The full-page plates and the headings to the chapters are printed in monotone by E. Nister, of Nuremberg.

The wood engravings in the text are executed by Edward Whymper, J.D. Cooper, and G. Pearson.


Track Chart





Title Page


Annie Brassey


Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail,
That brings our friends up from the underworld;
Sad as the last which reddens over one
That sinks with all we love below the verge;
So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more!


All rights reserved



In giving to the reading world these pages of the last Journal of one of the most popular writers of our day, no apology can be needed, and but little explanation.

A word had better perhaps be said, and said here, as to my share in its composition. It is now twelve years ago since my friend—then Mrs. Brassey—asked my advice and assistance in arranging the Diary she had kept during the eleven months' cruise of the 'Sunbeam.' This assistance I gladly gave, and she and I worked together, chiefly at reducing the mass of information gathered during the voyage. I often felt it hard to have to do away with interesting and amusing matter in order to reduce the book even to the size in which it appeared. It was a very pleasant and easy task, and I think the only difference of opinion which ever arose between us was as to the intrinsic merit of the manuscript. No one could have been more diffident than the writer of those charming pages; and it needed all the encouragement which both I and her friend and publisher, Mr. T. Norton Longman, could offer, to induce her to use many of the simple little details of her life, literally 'on the ocean wave.'

The success of the 'Voyage of the "Sunbeam"' need notiv be dwelt on here; it fully justified our opinion, surprising its writer more than any one else by its sudden and yet lasting popularity. Other works, also well received and well known to the public, followed during the next few years, with which I had nothing to do. This last Journal now comes before Lady Brassey's world-wide public, invested with a pathos and sadness all its own.

I venture to think that no one can read these pages without admiration and regret; admiration for the courage which sustained the writer amid the weakness of failing health, and regret that the story of a life so unselfish and so devoted to the welfare of others should have ended so soon.

On his return home, in December 1887, from this last cruise, Lord Brassey placed in my hands his wife's journals and manuscript notes, knowing that they would be reverently and tenderly dealt with, and believing that, on account of my previous experience with the 'Voyage of the "Sunbeam,"' I should understand better than any one else the writer's wishes.

My task has been a sad and in some respects a difficult one. Not only do I keenly miss the bright intelligence which on a former occasion made every obscure point clear to me directly, but the notes themselves are necessarily very fragmentary in places. It astonishes me that any diary at all should have been kept amid the enthusiasm which greeted the arrival and departure of the 'Sunbeam' at every port, the hurry and confusion of constant travelling, and, saddest of all, the evidences of daily increasing weakness. Great also has been my admiration for the indomitable spirit which lifted the frail body above and beyond all considerations of self. I need not here call attention to Lady Brassey's devotion to the cause of suffering shown in her unceasing efforts to establish branches of the St. John Ambulance Association allv over the world. It will be seen that the last words of the Journal refer to this subject, so near the writer's heart.

I have thought it best to allow the mere rough outline diary of the first part of the Indian journey to appear exactly as it stands, instead of attempting to enlarge it, which could have been done from Lord Brassey's notes. But, unhappily, the chief interest now of every word of this volume will consist, not in any information conveyed—for that could easily be supplied from other sources—but in the fact of its being Lady Brassey's own impression jotted hastily down at the moment. After reaching Hyderabad there was more leisure and an interval of better health; consequently each day's record is fuller. After August 29th the brief jottings of the first Indian days are resumed, but I have not felt able to lay these notes before the public, for they are simple records of suffering and helpless weakness, too private and sacred for publication. They extend up to September 10th, only four days before the end.

No one but Lord Brassey could take up the story after that date, and it is therefore to his pen that we owe the succeeding pages. All through the Journal I found constant references to what are called in the family the 'Sunbeam Papers,' a journal kept by Lord Brassey and printed for private circulation. With his permission, I have availed myself of these notes wherever I could do so, and I believe that this is what Lady Brassey would have wished. There were also, with the MSS., many interesting newspaper extracts referring to public utterances of Lord Brassey, but of these want of space compels me only to give three, specially alluded to by his wife, which will be found in the Appendix.

Lady Brassey had created an extraordinarily intimate and friendly feeling between herself and her readers all over thevi world. It has been felt in accordance with this mutual and affectionate understanding to give little personal details, and even a memoir compiled by Lord Brassey for his children during the sad days following the 14th of September, to the friendly eyes which will read with regret the last Journal of one who has been their pleasant chronicler and chatty fellow-traveller for so long. It must always seem as if Lady Brassey wrote specially for those who did not enjoy her facilities for going about and seeing everything.

I must express my thanks to Lady Brassey's secretaries for the kind help they have afforded me, not only in deciphering MSS., but in verifying dates and names of places.


London: March 1888.



 Introductory Chapter1
I.Bombay to Jubbulpore9
II.Hyderabad and Poona34
IV.Bombay to Goa73
X.Western Australia229
XI.Albany to Adelaide251
XIV.New South Wales309
XV.New South Wales (continued)325
XVII.The East Coast367
XVIII.East Coast (continued)391
XIX.Prince of Wales' Island409


List of Illustrations.


'Sunbeam,' R.Y.S., Christmas Day, 1886Frontispiece
Port Said Coaling-PartyTo face page1
Elephanta Caves"18
Peshawur Coal-Depot"26
En Route to Hunt Black-Buck with Cheetah"40
Patiala Elephants: the Drive"62
Religious Festival, Malabar Point"70
Benares and the Sacred Ganges"84
Moulmein, from the River"132
Singapore, Entrance to Harbour"140
Sarawak, Borneo: Opposite the Rajah's Fort"148
Fishing-Stakes, Sarawak River"162
Entrance to Bird's-Nest Caves, Madai"184
Fording the Stream for Madai"196
Kina Balu, 13,700 feet"210
Bad Weather, West Coast of Australia"226
Tree-Ferns, Australia"244
North Head, Sydney Harbour"306
Aborigines in Camp"370
Ant-Hills, Queensland, Australia"422



Evening Prayer1
Portsmouth, H.M.S. 'Hercules'2
Tanks at Aden3
Kurrachee Harbour5
The Mirs Falconer5
Bokhara Man6
Going to Dinner6
Our Home on Wheels7
Jubilee Illuminations, Bombay9
Crossing the Indus10
Shikarpur Bazaar11
Sukhur Bridge, Indus12
Old Sukhur13
Temple of the Sun, Mooltan14
Runjeet Singh's Tomb, Lahore15
Cañon, Murree16
Afghans at Jamrud17
Jamrud Fort18
Camel-guns and Standard18
Cabul Native, Lahore19
Camel Team20
Patiala Elephants21
Elephants Drinking22
The Kutub Minar23
Base of Kutub Minar24
Old Delhi and Weapons25
Palace in the Ulwar Fort27
Sar-Bahr, Gwalior28
Group of Natives29
Water-carrier, Benares30
Nerbudda River—Marble Rocks31
Meari, the Last of the Thugs31
Temple at Ellora32
The Fort, Poonah34
Gun Rock36
One-Tree Hill37
Mir Alam, Hyderabad38
Death of the Buck41
Mosque Entrance44
The Hamyan Jump, Delhi48
No Coal51
Interior, Delhi53
Bengal Lancer—Rawul Pindi56
The Ghauts, Bombay58
Bodyguard and Peon, Malabar Point60
The Apollo Bunder65
Bombay Harbour67
Omnibus-horse Tope68
Hindoo Girl69
At the Children's Ball70
The Arch of the Viceroys, Goa73
Jinjeera Fort75
Off Ratnagiri77
Vingora Rocks79
Vingora Lighthouse81
Portuguese Rowlock82
Cape Goa Entrance83
St. Xavier, Goa87xi
Inquisition Stake, Goa89
View in Ceylon97
Buddhist Priest99
Talipot Palm101
Seychelles Palm103
Governor's Peon, Kandy104
Cingalese Weapons105
Point de Galle106
Trincomalee Harbour108
Jumping Fish (Periophthalmus Kolreuteri)110
Sami Rock114
Coco Island Light116
Entrance to Caves at Moulmein119
Merchant Dhows, Indian Ocean120
Great Pagoda Court122
Entrance to Temple123
Rangoon Boat, Stern126
Ditto Stem127
Elephants at Work130
Moulmein River Boat132
On the Irrawaddy133
Entrance to Moulmein Caves135
Ferry at Morcenatin136
Point Amherst, Water Temple138
Bound South139
Traveller's Palm, Singapore142
Junks, Singapore144
Navigation Boards, River Kuching146
The Fort153
Malay Village, Labuan158
Brunei Hats161
Pangeran's Arrival164
Pitcher Plants and Kina Balu169
On the Fore-yard, making the Land173
In the Bird's-Nest Caves, Madai175
Mr. Flint's Bungalow177
Kapuan Timber-station179
Dyak Dance181
Borneo Weapons184
Sandakan, bearing N.185
Entering River, Madai187
Commissariat Department189
Return of the Head-Hunter192
Sulus at Silam198
Returning at Low Water199
Dutch Fort, Macassar203
The Shooting Party207
Under the Sun209
Our Coachman, Macassar211
Dutch (Native) Soldiers212
Macassar Policeman213
Fishing-boat, Allas Strait216
Our Wind-bob218
More Bad Weather220
Topmast Stunsails223
Effect of a Squall225
Fauna, W. Australia229
A Breakdown in the Bush243
Boomerangs or Kylies249
Getting under way251
An Aboriginal254
The Port Watch257
Running Down—Easting260
Cracking on261
Proclamation-Tree, Glenelg264
'Protector' Gunboat267
Stypandra umbellata275
On the Murray River278
A Buckboard280
Miners' Camp284
Exhibition Buildings, Melbourne287
Victoria Defence Fleet289
Lancers and Soudan Contingent292
A Forest Bridge304
Sydney Harbour307
Banksias, &c., New South Wales309
Summer Hill Creek313
Waterfall Gully318
Cook's Monument, Botany Bay323
Signal Station, Newcastle325
Kangaroo-foot (Arrigozanthus)327
Cattle crossing the Darling River333
Sheep crossing River335
Off the Track337
Rockhampton Lilies339
Fern Forest341
German Waggon346
Crinum asiaticum349
Mount Morgan357
The Ford363
Native Weapons, Queensland366
Balloon Canvas367
Stowing Foretopsail371
Queensland Natives373
Cardwell School House375
Dead Crocodile on Snag378
The Train in the Bush382
Zamoa Tree384
On the Johnstone River387
Thursday Island391
Coral on Pearl-oyster396
Drum from Murray Island402
Hammer-headed Oyster404
Claremont Island Lightship406
The Last Mill in Australia408
Port Darwin409
Darnley Island; the Shore413
Curios from Murray Island420
In the Torres Straits423
Church on Darnley Island425
St. Louis, Mauritius429
Off the Cape432
St. Helena435
Longwood, St. Helena437
Ascension. Green Mountain439
Sierra Leone441
Barque Hove-to443
Bearing up for Shelter445

Track ChartTo follow Half-title
Map of IndiaTo face page 72






'The greatest benefit which one friend can confer upon another is to guard, and excite, and elevate his virtues. This your mother will still perform if you diligently preserve the memory of her life and of her death....

'There is something pleasing in the belief that our separation from those whom we love is only corporeal....

'Here is one expedient by which you may, in some degree, continue her presence. If you write down minutely what you remember of her from your earliest years, you will read it with great pleasure, and receive from it many hints of soothing recollections, when time shall remove her yet further from you, and your grief shall be matured to veneration.'

Dr. Johnson.

My dear Children,—In sorrow and grief I have prepared a sketch of the life and character of your dearly loved mother, whom it has pleased God to call to Himself. Slight and imperfect as it is, it may hereafter help to preserve some tender recollections, which you would not willingly let die.

I shall begin with her childhood. Her mother havingxiv died in her infancy, for some years your dear mother lived, a solitary child, at her grandfather's house at Clapham. Here she acquired that love of the country, the farm, and the garden which she retained so keenly to the last. Here she learned to ride; and here, with little guidance from teachers, she had access to a large library, and picked up in a desultory way an extensive knowledge of the best English, French, German, and Italian literature.

After a few years' residence at Clapham, your grandfather moved to Chapel Street, Grosvenor Place, and later to the house which you remember in Charles Street. At this period your mother's education was conducted by her attached and faithful governess, Miss Newton, whom you all know. She attended classes, but otherwise her life must have been even more solitary in London than at Clapham. Her evenings were much devoted to Botany, and by assiduous application she acquired that thorough knowledge of the science which she found so useful later, in describing the profuse and varied vegetation of the tropics.

And now I come to my engagement to your mother. How sweet it is to remember her as she was in those young days; in manners so frank and unaffected, and full of that buoyant spirit which to the end of her life never flagged. She enjoyed with a glad heart every pleasure. She was happy at a ball, happy on her horse, happy on the grouse-moor, devoted to her father, a favourite with all her relatives, and very, very sweet to me. Gladness of heart, thankfulness for every pleasure, a happy disposition to make the best of what Providence has ordered, were her characteristics.

We were married in October 1860. After our marriage we had everything to create—our home, our society, our occupations. We began life at Beauport; and wonderfully did your dear mother adapt herself to wholly unanticipated circumstances. Beauport became a country home for ourxv nearest relations on both sides. As a girl, your mother had been a most loving daughter to her own father. After her marriage she was good and kind to my parents. To my brothers, until they were old enough to form happy homes of their own, she was an affectionate sister.

At the date of our marriage, no definite career had opened out for me. To follow my father's business was not considered expedient, and I had no commanding political influence. In the endeavour to help me to obtain a seat in Parliament, your dear mother displayed a true wife-like devotion. She worked with an energy and earnestness all her own, first at Birkenhead in 1861, and later at Devonport and Sandwich—constituencies which I fought unsuccessfully—and my return for Hastings in 1868 afforded her the more gratification. It had been the custom in the last-named constituency to invite the active assistance of ladies, and especially the wives of the candidates, in canvassing the electors. Your mother readily responded to the call. She soon became popular among the supporters of the Liberal party, and throughout my connection with Hastings she retained the golden opinions which she had so early won. Her nerve, high spirit, and ability, under the fierce ordeal of the petition against my return, have been described in his memoirs by Serjeant Ballantine, who conducted my case. He called your mother as his first witness for the defence, put one or two questions, and then handed her wholly unprepared to the counsel for the petitioners—the present Lord Chancellor. With unflinching fortitude your mother endured a cross-examination lasting for upwards of an hour. Her admirable bearing made a great impression upon the eminent judge (Mr. Justice Blackburn) who tried the case, and won the sympathies of the dense crowd of spectators. I remember how gratefully your mother acknowledged the mercy of Heaven in that crisis of her life. 'I could not have done it unless I had been helped,' were her simple words to me.xvi

Down to the latest election in which I was engaged, your dear mother, in the same spirit of personal devotion to her husband, wrought and laboured in the political cause. I have put her love for me as the prime motive for her efforts in politics; but she had too much intelligence not to form a judgment of her own on public issues. Her sympathies were instinctively on the side of the people, in opposition to the old-fashioned Toryism, so much more in vogue a quarter of a century ago than it is to-day.

In helping me to hold a seat in Parliament, your dear mother was inflicting upon herself a privation very hard to bear. Owning to the rapid changes in all the circumstances of our lives, it was difficult to preserve old associations. In the midst of new environments, to make her way alone was a great strain. It is some consolation to know what happiness I gave when, upon my release from the urgent demands of Parliamentary and official life, I was able to spend much of my time in her dear society. It is sad that this happy change should have come so late.

In addition to the share which she took in my Parliamentary labours, your mother undertook the exclusive management at home. This responsibility was gradually concentrated in her hands, owing to my long service in the House of Commons, combined with exceptionally heavy extra-Parliamentary work, finally culminating in my holding office at the Admiralty for more than five years.

How we shall miss her in everything! specially in the task of arranging in the museum, now near completion, the combined collections of our many journeys! She had so looked forward to being able to bring together these collections in London; one of her objects being to afford instruction and recreation to the members of the Working Men's Clubs, to whom she proposed to give constant facilities of access to the collection.xvii

The same spirit, which made your dear mother my helpmeet in my public life, sustained her, at the sacrifice of every personal predilection, in constant companionship with her husband at sea. She bore the misery of sea-sickness without a murmur or complaint. Fear in storm and tempest she never knew. She made yachting, notwithstanding its drawbacks, a source of pleasure. At Cowes she was always on deck, card in hand, to see the starts in the various matches. At sea she enjoyed the fair breezes, and took a deep interest in estimating the daily run, in which she was generally wonderfully exact. She had a great faculty for seamanship, and knew as well as anybody on board what should be done and what was being done on deck.

The same eager sympathy with every interest and effort of mine led your dear mother to help me as President of the Working Men's Club and Institute Union. She attended the meetings, distributed the prizes, and on one occasion entertained the members and their friends at Normanhurst. Upwards of a thousand came down from London, and were addressed by Lord Houghton and by M. Waddington, the French Ambassador. She also did all she could to encourage the Naval Artillery Volunteers. For years she attended inspections and distributed prizes on board the 'President' and the 'Rainbow.' She was always present at the annual service in Westminster Abbey. She witnessed the first embarkation in a gunboat at Sheerness. She carried through all the commissariat arrangements for the six hundred naval volunteers who were brought together from London, Liverpool, and Bristol for the great review at Windsor, sleeping under canvas for three nights in our encampment, and personally and most efficiently superintending every detail. The men were enthusiastic in their appreciation of her efforts.

The same interest was shown in my naval work. Your dear mother accompanied me frequently in my visits to thexviii dockyard towns at home and abroad, attended naval reviews, and was present at the manœuvres on the coast of Ireland in 1885, and in Milford Haven in 1886. At home and abroad she always aided most cordially my desire to establish kindly relations with the naval profession, among whom she numbered, I am sure, not a few sincere friends. The same spirit of sympathy carried your mother with me on dreary and arduous journeys to Ireland, where she paid several visits to the Lough Swilly estates. She called personally on every tenant, asked them to visit the 'Sunbeam,' treated them most kindly, and won their hearts.

Her reception of the Colonial visitors to England last year, when suffering from severe illness, and the visits to the Colonies, which were the last acts of her life, are the most recent proofs which your dear mother was permitted to give of her genuine sympathy with everything that was intended for the public good. The reception which she met with in Australia afforded gratifying assurances of the wide appreciation of her high-minded exertions on the part of our Colonial friends.

The last day of comparative ease in your mother's life was spent at Darnley Island. You remember the scene: the English missionaries, the native teacher with his congregation assembled around him, the waving cocoa-nuts, the picturesque huts on the beach, the deep blue sea, the glorious sunshine, the beauty and the peace. It was a combination after your mother's heart, which she greatly enjoyed, resting tranquilly under the trees, fanned by the refreshing trade-wind. You will remember her marked kindness of manner in giving encouragement to the missionaries in their work. It was another instance of her broad sympathies.

In attempting to give a description of your dear mother's fine character, I cannot omit her splendid courage. I have referred to it as shown on the sea. You who have followed her with the hounds, as long as she had strength to sit in the saddle,xix will never forget her pluck and skill. Her courage never failed her. It upheld her undaunted through many illnesses.

And now I turn to that part of the work of her life by which your dear mother is best known to the outer world. Her books were widely read by English-speaking people, and have been translated into the language of nearly every civilised nation. The books grew out of a habit, early adopted when on her travels, of sitting up in bed as soon as she awoke in the morning, in her dressing-jacket, and writing with pencil and paper an unpretending narrative of the previous day's proceedings, to be sent home to her father. The written letter grew into the lithographed journal, and the latter into the printed book, at first prepared for private circulation, and finally, on completion of our voyage round the world, for publication. The favourable reception of the first book was wholly unexpected by the writer. She awoke and found herself famous.

Her popularity as a writer has been won by means the simplest, the purest, and most natural which can be conceived. Not a single unkind or ungenerous thought is to be found in any book of hers. The instruction and knowledge conveyed, if not profound, are useful and interesting to readers of all classes. The choice of topics is always judicious. A bright and happy spirit glows in her pages, and it is this which makes the books attractive to all classes. They were read with pleasure by Prince Bismarck, as he smoked his evening pipe, as well as by girls at school. Letters of acknowledgment used to reach your mother from the bedside of the aged and the sick, from the prairies of America, the backwoods of Canada, and the lonely sheep-stations of Australia. Those grateful letters were the most valued which were received from the cottages of the poor. As old George Herbert sings,

Scorn no man's love, though of a mean degree;
Love is a present for a mighty King.


It was natural that your mother, with her eager nature, should be spurred on to renewed efforts by success. She set out on her last journey full of hope and enterprise. In India, in Borneo, in Australia, she was resolved to leave no place unvisited which could by any possibility be reached, and where she was led to believe that objects of interest could be found, to be described to readers who could not share her opportunities of travel. The enlargement of our programme of journeys within the tropics threw a heavy strain on her constitution. In Northern India her health was better than it had been for years, but she fell away after leaving Bombay. Rangoon and Borneo told upon her. She did not become really ill until the day after leaving Borneo, when she was attacked by the malarial fever which infests the river up which she had travelled to the famous bird's-nest caves. She suffered much until we reached the temperate climate of South Australia.

On leaving Brisbane we found ourselves once more in the tropics. Enfeebled by an attack of bronchitis caught at Brisbane, your mother was again seized with malarial fever. On the northern coast of Australia such fevers are prevalent, and our visits to Rockhampton, the Herbert River, Mourilyan, and Thursday Island, where we were detained ten days, were probably far from beneficial. No evil consequence was, however, anticipated; and without undue self-reproach we must bow with submission to the heavy blow which, in the ordering of Providence, has befallen us.

Your dear mother died on the morning of September 14, 1887, and her remains were committed to the deep at sunset on the same day (Lat. 15° 50´ S., Long. 110° 35´ E.) Every member of the ship's company was present to pay the last tribute of love and respect on that sad occasion. Your dear mother died in an effort to carry forward the work which, as she believed, it had pleased God to assign to her.xxi

From your mother's books let us turn to her charities; and first her public charities. You know how she has laboured in the cause of the St. John Ambulance Association, how she has taken every opportunity of urging forward the work in every place which we visited, in the West Indies, in the Shetlands, in London, at Middlesbrough, in Sussex. At all the ports at which we touched on our last cruise she spared no pains to interest people in the work. You heard her deliver her last appeal in the cause at Rockhampton. She spoke under extreme physical difficulty, but with melting pathos. As it was her last speech, so, perhaps, it was her best.

Your mother took up ambulance work at a time when it was little in fashion, because she believed it to be a good cause. By years of hard work, in speech, in letter, by interview, by pamphlet, by personal example and devotion, she spread to multitudes the knowledge of the art of ministering first-aid to the injured. We may rest assured that her exertions have been, under Providence, the means of saving many precious lives. In her last cruise you have seen how, when painful injuries have been received, she has been the first to staunch the bleeding wound, facing trying scenes with a courage which never faltered while there was need for it, but which, as the reaction which followed too surely told, put a severe strain upon her feeble frame.

Many could tell, in terms of deepest gratitude, what a true angel from heaven your dear mother had been to them in their hours of sickness. You will readily recall some of the most striking occasions.

That your mother accomplished what she did is the more to be admired when account is taken of the feeble condition of her health and of her many serious illnesses. She inherited weakness of the chest from her mother, who died of decline in early life. When on the point of first going out into society, she was fearfully burned, and lay for six months wrapped inxxii cotton-wool, unable to feed herself. In the early years of our married life we were frequently driven away in the winter to seek a cure for severe attacks of bronchitis. In 1869 your mother caught a malarial fever while passing through the Suez Canal. She rode through Syria in terrible suffering. There was a temporary rally, followed by a relapse, at Alexandria. From Alexandria we went to Malta, where she remained for weeks in imminent danger. She never fully recovered from this, the first of her severe illnesses, and in 1880 she had a recurrence of fever at Algiers. It was followed by other similar attacks—at Cowes in 1882, in the West Indies in 1883, at Gibraltar in 1886, and on her last voyage, first at Borneo, and finally, and with the results we so bitterly lament, on the coast of Northern Queensland. Only indomitable courage could have carried your mother through so much illness and left her mental energies wholly unimpaired, long after her physical frame had become permanently enfeebled. Loss of health compelled her to withdraw in great measure from general society. She was unequal to the demands of London life, and from the same cause was unable to remain in England during the winter. Thus she gradually lost touch of relatives and friends of former years, for whom she had a genuine regard. In such society as she was able to see at the close of her too short life, she never failed to win regard and sympathy. There will be many sad hearts in Australia when the tidings of your mother's death reaches the latest friends whom she was privileged to win.

The truest testimony to your mother's worth is to be found in the painful void created in the home circle by her death. For me the loss must be irreparable. It would, indeed, be more than we could bear, if we had no hope for the future. We cling to that hope; and whatever our hand findeth to do, we must, like her, try to do it with all our might.

Such then was your dear mother: a constant worker,xxiii working it may be beyond her strength, yet according to the light which God had given her, and in the noblest causes. Your mother was always doing good to those from whom she had no hope to receive. She did not do her alms before men: not those at least which cost her most in time and in thought. When she prayed, she entered into her closet and shut the door, and, without vain repetition, presented her heart's desire in language most simple before the Father in Heaven. Her life was passed in the spirit of the Apostle's exhortation: 'Be ye kind one to another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another.'

In the last prayer which she was able to articulate with me, your mother besought the blessing of Heaven upon us both, praying that she might yet be spared to be a comfort to me and all around her. In that prayer was embodied the central aim of her existence. Her praise to God was sung in her work of practical good. Her psalm was the generous sacrifice of self to works which she believed would be for the advantage of others. This thoughtfulness was shown in the most beautiful way, when the last sad call had come. When, in reply to her touching inquiry, 'Is it quite hopeless?' the answer gave no encouragement to hope, you will not forget the tenderness, the unfaltering fortitude, with which she bestowed her blessing, and then proceeded, until articulation was denied, to distribute to each some token of her tender love. She died in perfect charity with all, sweetly submissive to the Divine Will, and consoling her afflicted husband and children to the very last.

Your mother's heart was as large as it was tender. She was devoted, as a wife, to her husband; as a mother, to her children. She was kind to dependents, ever thoughtful for the poor, and there was a large place in her heart for her dumb companions. Her presence will, I am sure, never fade from your recollection; and in all my remembrance of her I can recall no period of her life when her face was so dear toxxiv look upon as in the days after leaving Port Darwin. As she lay back on her pillows, a veil of white lace thrown round her head, her eyes so bright, her smiles so loving, not a murmur from her lips nor a shade of unrest on her serene countenance, the peculiar sweetness of her expression seemed a foretaste of the peace of heaven.

I do not recall these things solely as a tribute to the dear one who has passed away from among us, but for your profit and for mine. We have seen how your mother used her opportunities to make the world a little better than she found it. We may each do the same service in our own sphere, and so may best be followers of her good example. In tenderest love may we ever cherish and bless and revere her memory.

My dear children, I might write more. I could never tell you what your mother was to me.

Your very affectionate father,


'Sunbeam,' R.Y.S.: September 1887.

Port Said Coaling-Party



Evening Prayer

Evening Prayer


WHEN the arrangements for a contemplated cruise to the East were being considered, towards the end of 1886, it was thought best for Lady Brassey and her daughters to make the voyage to Bombay in a P. & O. steamer. The 'Sunbeam' herself was to sail from Portsmouth by the middle of November. Lord Brassey, in the first paragraph of his 'Sunbeam Papers,' thus acknowledges the help he derived at starting, in what may be called the domestic department of the yacht, from Lady Brassey's presence on board for even a few hours.

'We embarked at Portsmouth on Monday, November 16th. The "Sunbeam" was in hopeless confusion, and it required no ordinary effort of determination and organisation to clear out of harbour on the following day. A few hours at South2ampton did wonders in evolving order out of chaos. On the afternoon of November 18th, my wife and eldest daughter, who had come down to help in preparing for sea, returned to the shore, and the "Sunbeam" proceeded immediately down Channel.'

Portsmouth. H.M.S. 'Hercules'

Portsmouth, H.M.S. ‘Hercules’

At Plymouth Lord Brassey was joined by the late Lord Dalhousie and by Mr. Arnold Morley, M.P. The former landed at Gibraltar, and the latter at Algiers. Through the long voyage to Bombay the gallant little yacht held stoutly on her course, meeting first a mistral in the Mediterranean, then strong head-winds in the Red Sea, and having the N.E. monsoon in her teeth after leaving Aden.

Tanks at Aden Tanks at Aden

In the meantime Lady Brassey, her three daughters, and some friends left England a few days after the yacht had sailed, travelling slowly, with many interesting stopping-places, and not finally reaching Brindisi until December 11th. Thence to Egypt was but a brief voyage, and the one day's3 rest (!) at Alexandria was devoted, as usual, by Lady Brassey to visits—so minute in their careful examination into existing conditions as to be more an inspection than the cursory call of a passing traveller—to the Soldiers and Sailors' Institute, and also to the Military Hospital at Ramleh. Arrangements had next to be made for the disposal of stores sent out by the Princess of Wales' branch of the National Aid Society; and all this constituted what may fairly be considered a hard day's work. Then came a well-occupied week in4 Cairo, where much hospital-visiting was again got through, and many interviews respecting the site for the new hospital at Port Said were held with the Egyptian authorities. This pleasant but by no means idle dawdling brought the party to Suez on December 23rd, where they embarked at once on board the P. & O. steamer 'Thames,' Captain Seaton, and started at midnight for Bombay.

Carefully and well had the plans for both voyages been laid, and successfully—by grace of wind and weather—had they been carried out. On January 3rd, 1887, Lord Brassey in the 'Sunbeam' and Lady Brassey in the 'Thames' exchanged cordial signals of greeting off the harbour of Bombay. The incident must be briefly described from the earlier 'Sunbeam Papers' (for of this first portion of the cruise Lady Brassey has unhappily left no notes). 'As we were becalmed off Bombay, waiting for the sea breeze which invariably freshens towards noon, the Peninsular and Oriental Company's steamship "Thames," with my wife and children on board, passed ahead of us into the harbour. We had a delightful meeting in the afternoon at Government House, Malabar Point, where we were greeted with a most cordial welcome from our dear friends Lord and Lady Reay.'

We are so accustomed nowadays to the punctual keeping of appointments made months before, with half the width of the world between the meeting-places, that this happy and fortunate coincidence will scarcely excite remark, even when the home journal dwells on the added joy of the arrival, that very same evening, as planned beforehand, of Lord Brassey's son, who had started earliest, and had been spending some weeks of travel, sight-seeing, and sport, pleasantly combined, in Ceylon and Southern India.

Kurrachee Harbour Kurrachee Harbour

The punctuality of the P. & O. steamers might be a proverb, if in these hurried days anyone ever paused to make a proverb; and therefore it is not the rapid run of the5 'Thames' which excites our admiration. It is rather the capital sailing qualities, well tried and proven as they are, of the 'Sunbeam.' Though essentially a sailing vessel and carrying very little coal, the yacht had made her way through the intricate navigation of the Red Sea and against the strong contrary winds of the N.E. monsoon, which blew with quite exceptional force off the southern shores of Arabia, and had finally dropped anchor at the appointed day, and almost hour, in Bombay Harbour.

Mirs Falconer The Mirs Falconer

On this, her first visit, the 'Sunbeam' remained only three days at Bombay. She sailed again for Kurrachee on January 6th, 1887, and reached her destination early on Tuesday, the 11th. The stay in Bombay was cut short by the desire of the travellers to join Lord and Lady Reay, and journey with them for the first few days of an official tour in Sindh, on which the Governor of Bombay was about to start. There are exceptional opportunities in such an excursion for seeing great concourses of natives, and gaining knowledge of the condition of the country from the officials engaged in its administration. The first point of interest noted is a native horse-fair held at Shikarpur, where 'in the immense concourse gathered together, all the races of these wild districts6 were represented. The most characteristic people were the Beloochees—men of sturdy build, who carry themselves with a bold and manly air. They formerly lived by raids and cattle-lifting, swooping down from the Suleiman Mountains upon the people of the plains, who were seldom able to offer any effectual resistance. We have established order in these once lawless regions by our military force, posted at Jacobabad.'

Bokhara Man Bokhara Man

From the brief notes of this earlier part of the journey, which follow, it is evident that the travellers had semi-official receptions of their own at nearly every large station. Addresses of cordial welcome were presented; replies had to be made; and it is perhaps from these causes of added fatigue and excitement that Lady Brassey was unable to do more than jot down the events of each day.

Lord and Lady Brassey and their family travelled together through Sindh, along the north-west frontier of India to Lahore, Peshawur, and the Khyber Pass; and Lord Brassey gratefully notes in the first number of 'Sunbeam Papers' that his7 wife's health in Northern India was better than it had been for years.

Going to Dinner Going to Dinner

A fresh start on the return journey to Bombay was made from Lahore on January 21st, viâ Patiala, whose Maharajah, young as he is, carries on the practice of sumptuous welcome and entertainment of English travellers which forms part of the historic traditions of the loyal rulers of the state. Agra was reached on January 30th, and at this point, after a brief delay, the party separated, Lord Brassey retracing his steps to Kurrachee to take the yacht back to Bombay. The rest came round by Cawnpore and Lucknow, Benares, Jubbulpore, and Poonah, and so on to Hyderabad, their farthest inland point, where Lady Brassey's more elaborated diary commences.

Our Home on Wheels

Our Home on Wheels

The whole of this long journey of 4,500 miles was made8 in thirty-six days, and with the exception of the two nights at the Maharajah's palace at Patiala, the railway train was the only sleeping-place of the travellers, who were eleven in number. Halts and stoppages were made in the day-time to admit of local sight-seeing and excursions. Lady Brassey, in a private letter, declared this plan of travel to be delightful and thoroughly comfortable; and it will be seen that Hyderabad was reached not only with comfort but with renovated health, and with the full enthusiasm of travel and ardour of enjoyment strong in the breast of the well-known diarist, whose last journals, faithfully kept when once commenced, are now before us.



Jubilee Illuminations, Bombay




Thursday, January 6th.—Left Bombay harbour at 2 a.m. and proceeded to sea under steam. Rather rolly. Very busy all day unpacking and arranging things. As nearly everybody was more or less overcome, I felt that I must make an effort. Small party at meals. State of things improved towards evening.

Friday, January 7th.—On deck at 5 a.m. Shifty breeze.10 Tacking all day. Busy unpacking and repacking, and trying to get things straight. Towards evening the invalids began to pick up a little and to appear on deck.

At noon we were off Verawal, having run 135 miles since yesterday. Distance from Kurrachee, 310 miles.

Saturday, January 8th.—On deck at 5 a.m. Pleasant breeze, but not favourable. Several dhows in sight near the land. At eight o'clock a dead calm and very hot. At noon a sea-breeze, fair; at five o'clock a land-breeze, foul. Steam up at 11 p.m.

Sunday, January 9th.—A flat calm at 4.30 a.m. The 'Southern Cross' and 'Great Bear' bright in the heavens. The moon set with curious 'horse's-tail' effects. At noon we were off Kori, or Lakhpat. At 10 p.m. heavy squall from N.E. came on, accompanied by a downpour of rain.

Crossing the Indus

Crossing the Indus

Monday, January 10th.—Made Kurrachee Light soon after midnight. Entered the harbour at daybreak, very cold on deck. Soon after we had anchored, Mr. Dashtar, one of the Parsee cricketers, came on board with bouquets of flowers for all of us. After much settling, and packing, and engaging new servants, we breakfasted; and then, having landed, proceeded to see something of Kurrachee City, the alligator-tank, and the cantonment. Engaged additional horses for a longer11 expedition, in the course of which our carriage stuck in the sand as we tried to cross one of the many shallow mouths of the Indus. Muriel and I refused to quit the carriage, and managed to get over. The rest of the party waded across. Returned on board yacht, and later on proceeded in the steam-launch with Captain Parker to the lighthouse. Landed again at the pier in the evening, and started on our long inland journey in the special train which had been provided for us. Excellent dinner in train. Comfortable night.


Shikarpur Bazaar Shikarpur Bazaar

Tuesday, January 11th.—Blue glass in carriage windows made the landscape look as if covered with snow. Stopped for baths and refreshments at one of the stations en route. Breakfasted later in train. Passed through a dreary country, a saltpetre desert, relieved by occasional scrubby trees. Interesting people at wayside stations—Sindhis, Beloochees, Afghans, Persians, and others.

Reached Shikarpur at two o'clock. Met by Colonel Mayhew, Mr. Ralli, and Colonel Lyttelton. Drove to Commissioner's residence. Colonel Mayhew took us to the fair, and to see the wrestling; then to the bazaars. Wonderful concourse of people. Bought carpets and silks. Entertained friends at tea 'on board' train. Dined with Mr. Erskine.

Wednesday, January 12th.—Very wet night. Breakfasted early. Drove to the Residency, where the fires were most acceptable. Lady Reay's room partly washed away in night, being in what is appropriately called a melting-house. To the camp of the Amir, a courteous old man with five sons. A scene to be remembered. Saw13 fighting-rams, cocks, and partridges. Lunched at station, where we met Tom and children. Afterwards to the great Shikarpur horse-fair and prize-giving. Interesting sight, but bitterly cold air.

Sukhur Bridge, Indus

Sukhur Bridge, Indus

Thursday, January 13th.—Amir sent seven camels, beautifully caparisoned, to take us to his camp. Drove through bazaars. Most graciously received at camp, but luckily escaped refreshment. Thence to the Commissioner's house. Deputation of judges of show and principal Sindhi, Hindoo, Mahomedan, and other inhabitants, bringing fruit, flowers, and sweetmeats. Left at twelve o'clock in Governor's train for Sukhur Bridge. Proceeded in steamer up the Indus past Rohri. Town gaily decorated. Saw canal and irrigation works. Hard work going up stream, easy coming down again, as is often the case. It is said that a voyage of ten days in one direction often occupies three weeks in the other. Strolled through town of Sukhur. Picturesque illuminations in the evening. Returned to our yacht on wheels at ten o'clock, thoroughly tired.

Old Sukhur Old Sukhur

Friday, January 14th.—Called at seven. Very cold. Breakfasted with the Brackenburys. Good-bye to our dear Bombay friends. Drove round the town, and then with Tom and Tab to Old Sukhur and the bazaars. The Governor and Lady Reay left at noon for Sindh. We proceeded by water to Rohri. Train crosses the river in boats; picturesque scene—camels, boats, train, volunteers, and natives. Much plagued by flies. Telegraphed for dinner at the station at Ritti. Very cold night indeed. Could not sleep after two o'clock. Water froze in bottles.14

Saturday, January 15th.—Crossed Empress Bridge over Sutlej. Reached Mooltan at 6 a.m. Breakfasted at nine. Mohamed Hyat Khan, district judge, very kindly offered us his services as guide. He had been much with Lord Lawrence, carried Nicholson from field of battle when the latter was wounded, and killed the man who slew him. Called on Colonel Barnes. Old fort, dark blue and light green tiles. To the bazaars. Enamelled jewellery and brass foot-pans. Returned to the train, wrote letters, and settled plans. Visited the church with Mr. Bridge (cousin of our old friend Captain Cyprian Bridge, R.N.), the chaplain here. Tea at the club, which resembles other clubs all the world over. Back to station, where deputation of chiefs came to see Maude Laurence. Left Mooltan at 7.50 p.m.

Temple of the Sun, Mooltan

Temple of the Sun, Mooltan

Sunday, January 16th.—Shortly before eight o'clock we passed a large cantonment, and soon afterwards caught sight of the tombs and temples of Lahore. Train shunted into siding. Found letters innumerable awaiting us. Went to15 Mr. K.'s church, and afterwards in camel-carriage to Sultan Serai. Polo ponies, horses, and wild-looking people. Negro ponies with curly hair.

Monday, January 17th.—Called early. Breakfast at eight. In gharries and camel-carriage to Government House. Thence to the jail, where we saw the process of carpetmaking; and afterwards to the School of Art. 'Sir Roger' suddenly disappeared, to my consternation, but was discovered, after much search, wandering about near the jail. To the Zoological Gardens; nothing specially worthy of notice except a fierce tiger. Then to the Lawrence Hall, where balls and concerts take place.

Runjeet Singh's Tomb, Lahore

Runjeet Singh’s Tomb, Lahore

In the afternoon we rode on elephants, guided by mahouts in red and yellow uniforms, and attended by servants in liveries of the same colour, to the bazaars. Contents most interesting, especially the carved woodwork, copper-work, and Persian armour. Went to Golden Mosque and Fort, the16 palace, elephant-pool, and Runjeet Singh's tomb. Wonderful sight. Great fun bargaining. Shops each more curious than the others. Returned to station and resumed journey for Peshawur.

Cañon, Murree, Northern India

Cañon, Murree

Tuesday, January 18th.—Reached Rawul Pindi, where there is a large cantonment. The views of the Indus are fine in places, but the railway on the whole passes through a barren desolate country until Peshawur is approached, when the soil becomes more cultivated.

Afghans at Jamrud Afghans at Jamrud

On arrival at Peshawur Station we procured gharries and drove rapidly to the house of the Commissioner, Colonel Waterfield, who was most kind. Then in a dog-cart and three gharries to the bazaar; very quaint and picturesque. Fine view of the Khyber Pass and the Himalayas from top of police office. Drove to the King's Garden, which is well laid out and contains many fine trees. The Christian church at17 Peshawur contains many memorial tablets to missionaries. Colonel Waterfield dined with us in the train, and told us much that was deeply interesting about this part of India.

Wednesday, January 19th.—Visited by traders of all kinds. Colonel Waterfield and Major Warburton called for us, and we proceeded in gharries and char-à-banc to the Jamrud Fort and entrance to Khyber Pass. Saw 1st Bengal Cavalry and Skinner's Horse exercising under Colonel Chapman. Inspected portion of the force of 650 infantry and 50 cavalry maintained for the18 protection of travellers through the Khyber. Tuesday and Friday are the caravan days each week. Strong escort for caravans necessary, owing to intermittent fighting between tribes on either side of pass.

Jamrud Fort

Jamrud Fort

Camel Guns

Camel-guns and Standard



Cabul Native, Lahore Cabul Native, Lahore

Thursday, January 20th.—Arrived before daylight at Rawul Pindi. Woke very early and wrote letters. General Dillon came to greet us. Drove out to the parade-ground. Passed19 troops on way to be reviewed. The strength on parade included 15th Bengal (Mooltan) Cavalry, 18th Bengal Lancers (Punjaub), Mountain Battery, and the 14th Bengal Infantry (Sikhs). The whole force marched past in splendid style, quite equal to any but the Guards, and then the cavalry went by at a gallop. Mounted gun, carried on five mules, unlimbered in sixty, limbered in sixty-five seconds. Thukkar quoit-throwing extraordinary, the quoits looking like flying-fish darting hither and thither. Also tent-pegging, with and without saddles—shaking rupee off without touching peg, digging peg out of the ground, changing horses at full gallop, and hanging on in every conceivable attitude. Lunched at the residence of the General. Inspected native and British hospitals, huts, tents, and recreation-rooms. Then back to station, where we entertained friends to tea. Resumed journey at 8.20 p.m. All very tired.

Lahore Lahore

Friday, January 21st.—Saw minarets of the Shah Dura. Arrived at Lahore two hours and forty20 minutes late. Drove to Shah Dura in camel-carriage, over Ravee River by bridge of boats. Stream nearly dry. Inlaid marble tomb very beautiful, but surroundings disappointing and much damaged. Saw the elephants being washed in the river. It was most amusing to see how wonderfully they were managed by quite tiny boys. After lunch we went to the Museum, which has21 only recently been opened. Thence to the bazaar and the Lawrence and Montgomery Halls, and afterwards to Mr. Elsmie's native party, where we met many interesting people. Dined with the Elsmies, and met Colonel Wolseley, Lord Wolseley's brother.

Camel Team

Camel Team

Amritsar Amritsar

Saturday, January 22nd.—Left Lahore at 5 a.m., and reached Amritsar at seven. Noticed encampment and caravan of camels just before arriving. Drove with Mr. Mitchell through the picturesque city to the Golden Temple, with its gilded domes, minarets, and lamps, its marble-terraces, and its fine garden. This temple is the headquarters of the Sikh religion. Beautiful view of the Himalayas from roof. In the public garden, called the Rambagh, people were playing lawn-tennis. Left Amritsar at 8 p.m.


Sunday, January 23rd.—At 5 a.m. reached Rajpura, and were received by a deputation of officials. Tea and fruit awaited us in the dâk bungalow, not a hundred yards from the station, to enable us to reach which five carriages had been provided. At 8 a.m. we reached Patiala, where carriages and four, twenty elephants with howdahs, and an escort of thirty horsemen were drawn up in readiness for us. At one o'clock we drove to the Bari Durri, or Palace of the Maharajah of Patiala, a dignified boy of fourteen, who received us most courteously. Drove through the city to another palace called Moti Bagh, which had been placed at our disposal, and where the Maharajah returned our visit.


Patiala Elephants

Patiala Elephants


Elephants Drinking

Mounting Mounting

Monday, January 24th.—The gentlemen went out shooting early. Started at 11.30 in carriages drawn by four horses, and drove through scrub-like jungle to meet the shooting party. Rode on elephants, in rather tumble-to-pieces howdahs. Saw many black and grey partridges, quail, deer, and jungle-fowl, but could not shoot any on account of the unsteadiness of the howdahs. Grand durbar at the Maharajah's palace in the evening. Four thousand candles in glass chandeliers.

The Kutub Minar

The Kutub Minar

Base of the Kutub Minar

Base of Kutub Minar

Old Delhi and Weapons Old Delhi and Weapons

Tuesday, January 25th.—We were honoured early this24 morning with a visit from the three members of the council of regency. Sir Deva Sing, the president, is a man of distinguished presence and graceful manners. In the course of conversation we endeavoured to elicit his views on several points. Tom questioned him as to the relations between the Government of India and the native states, and told me that he said, speaking for Patiala, and indeed for the native states generally, there were no grievances of which they could complain. Patiala sent a contingent to the last Afghan campaign. Sir Deva Sing, referring to our policy in Afghanistan, thought it would be wise to advance the frontier to the further limits of Afghanistan. He advocated this step solely on the grounds of prestige. Turning to the condition of the native25 army, he thought it desirable to improve the position of native officers in the British service. They are not dissatisfied with the actual conditions; they are prepared to fight to the last in support of England; but they would appreciate any step which could be taken to put them on a level with British officers.

A visit to Patiala suggests some general reflections. Under native rule, roads, sanitation, education, everything which belongs to the higher civilisation, is neglected, while money is lavishly spent on elephants, equipages, menageries, jewellery, palaces, and barbaric splendours of every kind. It is a great abuse, much needing correction, that the native states, though they have received from the British complete guarantees against foreign invasion and internal rebellion, maintain armed men, for the vanity of military display, to the number of 315,000.26

Ulwar Ulwar

It would have lightened our burdens greatly if the internal government of India could have been left under native princes. Such an alternative, unfortunately, was not open to us. The native rulers would have proved for the most part incapable of the task. They would have been led on by internecine warfare to mutual destruction. The trade with England depends on the peace which we have been instrumental in preserving.

The gentlemen went out shooting, and we joined them at lunch as before. Paid some visits in the afternoon, and played lawn-tennis at the Bari Durri with the Maharajah. Left Patiala at 8 p.m.

Wednesday, January 26th.—Arrived at Meerut at 5 a.m., and thence continued our journey to Delhi. Drove to dâk bungalow, and thence to the palace, now being partially restored. Public audience-hall, Pearl Mosque, and the entire group of buildings, within the fort at Delhi, are noble examples of Indian architecture. Lunched at United Service Hotel, in the garden of which is the tomb of the Emperor Hamayun.



Thursday, January 27th.—Drove out early to the Ridge, the flagstaff battery, and the big durbar tent. Saw the troops march by, and at rifle practice. After breakfast went with Mr. Cannon to the Kutub Minar, the grandest column in the world; climbed to the top, whence there is a splendid27 view. Spent the rest of the day in seeing the sights of this wonderful city. Dined at dâk bungalow, and returned to train. Started at 10.48 for Ulwar.

Palace in the Ulwar Fort

Palace in the Ulwar Fort

Friday, January 28th.—Arrived at Ulwar at 7 a.m. Messenger from Maharajah to act as our guide. Most lovely palace, not generally shown. Exquisite lace-like marble tracery, especially in Zenana rooms. Both the Maharajah and the Maharanee are at present away. Schinnahal Tank at back, with cupolas, too beautiful for words. We also went to the summer palace and the gardens attached to it, in which, among other things, we saw some schoolboys playing cricket. Both at Ulwar and at Jeypore there are hospitals and medical schools for male and female students.

Sar-Bahr, Gwalior

Sar-Bahr, Gwalior

Saturday, January 29th.—Reached Jeypore at 6 a.m. The Maharajah's secretary and his assistant, both dressed in28 black, came to meet us at seven o'clock. Drove to Amber, the ancient city of the Rajpoots, now almost uninhabited, except by Fakirs. Lovely drive in the cool morning air. Elephants at foot of hill, and alligators in tank. At the temple a kid is sacrificed every morning, of which fact we saw traces. Visited the palace—an extensive and gorgeous building, with fine specimens of carved marble. Magnificent view from roof. Drove back to Jeypore to breakfast, and found men with specimens of arms, and curiosities of all kinds, awaiting us. Visited School of Art and Museum. Lunched at excellent Kaisar-i-Hind hotel. Then to the palace, which contains endless courts and halls-of-audience, including the celebrated Dewani Khas, of white marble. Ascended to seventh story, by special permission. Extensive view over city. Interview with Maharajah. Saw his stables, trained29 horses, and fighting animals, and the beautiful Ram Newas Gardens.

Group of Natives

Group of Natives

Sunday, January 30th.—Arrived at Agra. Went to church and heard a good sermon. Drove to the Taj, 'the glory of the world,' which was not in the least disappointing, high as were our expectations. Dined with Colonel Smith.

Monday, January 31st.—Drove out to Futtehpore Sikri, the favourite residence of the Emperor Akbar, about twenty-five miles from Agra, where there is a lovely tomb, finer than any we have yet seen. German photographer taking views of it. Lunched near the Jain Temple, which contains most curious carvings. Tom says it is remarkable how well some British regiments stand the climate of India. At Agra we saw the Manchester Regiment. After three years at Mooltan, perhaps the hottest station in India, the men were in rude health. They marched the whole distance to Agra. At the time of our visit the men were playing football and cricket, as vigorously as if they were in England. They subscribe for newspapers; they amuse themselves with frequent theatricals. They are fit to go anywhere and do anything.30

Water-carrier, Benares Water-carrier, Benares

The prison at Agra is admirably administered. Under the direction of Dr. Tyler, the men are being instructed in trades, by which, when released from confinement, they will be able to earn an honest living. The manufacture of carpets in the prison has been brought to perfection. A similar progress has been made in wood-carving in the prison at Lahore. Throughout India the prisons have been converted, with a wise humanity, into busy workshops.

Tuesday, February 1st.—Left Agra by special train at 3 a.m. and reached Gwalior at seven. Colonel Bannerman, with carriages, kindly met us. After breakfast drove out to the fort, to reach which we had to ride on very shaky elephants up a steep road. Barracks deserted now that the English soldiers are gone. Saw the Jain Temple, restored by Captain Keith. Returned to Gwalior, and lunched at the Residency. Proceeded by 1.45 train to Dholepore. Maharajah received us at station and entertained us with coffee. Reached Agra again at six o'clock.

Nerbudda River, Marble Rocks Nerbudda River—Marble Rocks

Wednesday, February 2nd.—Arrived at Cawnpore at 2 a.m. Drove at 6.45 through the streets to the Memorial Gardens, where a monument is erected over the well into which so many victims of the Mutiny were cast. Visited the site of the Assembly Rooms,31 where women and children were hacked to death. Then to General Wheeler's entrenchment, St. John's Church, and the present Memorial Church, which contains many interesting tablets with touching inscriptions. Proceeded by train to Lucknow. Went with General Palmer to the Residency. Lovely gardens, full of purple bougainvillea, orange bignonia, and scarlet poinsettias. It was difficult to realise that this spot had once been the scene of so much horror and bloodshed. It was in the gardens of the Secundra Bagh that two thousand mutineers were killed within two hours by the 93rd Regiment and the 4th Punjaub Rifles, under Sir Colin Campbell. Lunched at the Imperial Hotel, and afterwards went to the soldiers' coffee-tavern.


Meari, the Last of the Thugs Meari, the Last of the Thugs

Thursday, February 3rd.—Reached Cawnpore at midnight, and Allahabad at 7.20 a.m. Met by Mr. Adam with the Maharajah's carriages, in which we drove to the principal places of interest, including the fort, the arsenal, and the Sultan's serai and gardens. Returned to station and went on by train to Benares. Drove through the narrow and dirty streets to the Golden Temple. Not much to be seen in the shops except London brasswork and Hindoo gods. The Temple was chiefly remarkable for the dirt which abounded. The Cow Temple was dirtier still, with cows and bulls tied up all round it. Monkey Temple very curious. Drove out to the cantonments, several miles from the city. Dined at Clarke's Hotel, and returned to the train very tired.


Friday, February 4th.—Called at 6 a.m. Started at half-past seven for the Ranagar Palace, where we found chairs in readiness to carry us up the ascent. Received by the old Maharajah, his son, and grandson. Embarked in a boat propelled by a treadmill, and proceeded down the river, past all the ghauts and palaces belonging to various kings and princes or to their descendants. The bathing-ghaut was a wonderful sight. Women in brilliant colours; red palanquins and pilgrims. Carriages met us at the bridge.

Temple at Ellora

Temple at Ellora

During the succeeding days the journey included visits to the Marble Rocks, near Jubbulpore, and to the Caves of Ellora, viâ Aurungabad.


The Fort, Poonah

The Fort, Poonah



WE arrived at Hyderabad at half-past eleven on February 9th, and found Major Gilchrist (military secretary to the Resident, Mr. Cordery) waiting with the Nizam's carriages to take us to the Residency. It is an imposing building with a flight of twenty-two granite steps, a colossal sphinx standing on either hand, leading to the portico through which you reach the spacious reception and dining rooms, whilst the comfortably furnished sleeping-apartments lie beyond. An35 entire wing had been appropriated to the ladies of our party; and, luxurious as our railway-cars had been, the increased space and size of our new quarters appeared thoroughly delightful.

In the afternoon we went for a drive through the populous Hindoo suburb of Chadar Ghát to the celebrated 'Tombs of the Kings' at Golkonda, which, however, must not be confounded with the celebrated diamond mines of the same name, for they are nearly one hundred miles apart. The road to the Tombs passes over a stony belt or plain, on which gigantic masses of dark granite lie on all sides in picturesque confusion. The natives have a legend that they are the fragments left over at the completion of the Creation. About seven miles from the city, a solitary gloomy-looking hill rises, crowned by a fort, at the foot of which stand the Tombs. They are magnificent buildings with grand kubbabs or domes rising above the terraces, arcades, and minarets of the main edifice. One of the finest of the Tombs, dedicated to the memory of a Kootub Shahi king, has unfortunately been whitewashed within and without. The Tombs are mainly built of grey granite. They are nearly all covered with beautiful mosaics and enamelled tiles, mutilated, however, in too many instances by the hands of modern relic-hunters. The buildings are surrounded by gardens fragrant with champa and orange-blossom, and gay with many other flowers. One can see that formerly the gardens must have been much more lovely and luxuriant than they now are. The decay and ruin were caused by the great siege in the days of Aurangzib. Extensive repairs have been carried out by Sir Salar Jung. He has restored the gardens, and saved the Tombs from the destruction which had gradually been creeping over them.

We drove back, as we had come, in one of the Nizam's carriages—a drag drawn by four horses, cleverly managed by the chief coachman (an Englishman, named Ulett), who36 twisted his steeds about in the most marvellous way, especially in the garden before starting, where they might have been said to have 'turned on a sixpence.' I occupied the box-seat coming home, and enjoyed the delicious freshness of the evening air, among the picturesque rocks which rose up on either side. One of these, called 'One Gun Rock,' looks exactly like a cannon without its carriage, resting on an elevation and pointed towards the city. There is another rock with a similar name near Secunderabad; but the resemblance in that case is not so striking.

In the evening we dined with a native gentleman, who spoke English fairly well, and gave us a sumptuous repast in European fashion. Besides a multitude of chandeliers in his house, he had a billiard-table with glass legs, and splendid red satin chairs also with glass arms and legs. The view from the roof, to which we ascended after dinner, over the city, bathed in the light of the full moon, was really beautiful and quite romantic. On leaving, our host handed each of us a little flacon of most delicious attar of roses.

Gun Rock

Gun Rock

The following morning we were called at five o'clock, and by seven were driving towards Secunderabad, five or six miles distant. On leaving the Residency, which stands in the suburb of Chadar Ghát, about a mile to the north-west of the city;37 we drove through the city of Hyderabad, where the population is mainly Mahomedan, and afterwards through the outlying suburbs and villages, chiefly inhabited by Hindoos. Two miles north of Secunderabad is Trimulgherry, the headquarters of the Hyderabad Subsidiary Force, and a very important military station for European troops, the city of Secunderabad itself being garrisoned by native troops. One-tree Hill is not very far from here, called after the solitary palm-tree standing in the midst of a mass of rocks. Passing the city, we came to the barracks of the 7th Hussars, and then to Bolarum, where the Resident lives during the rainy season. His house is quite charming with its handsome ball-room, numerous lawn-tennis grounds, and well-kept gardens, in which we gathered violets and roses. The breeze was quite invigorating, the difference between the air here and at Hyderabad being very remarkable, considering that this is only 200 feet higher. The view from the top of the house,38 towards Byham's Monument and the quarters of the Hyderabad Contingent, was also interesting, the landscape resembling burnt-up, brown, breezy 'down' country, and reminding us all of Sussex.

One-Tree Hill

One-Tree Hill

We drove back to the Residency to breakfast and there sat quietly and read all the morning in our pleasant rooms. Late in the afternoon we drove to the tank of Mir Alam, where a brother of Sir Salar Jung was waiting for us in a steam-launch, in which we made little voyages up and down the so-called 'tank,' which was in fact an artificial lake twenty miles in circumference, and covering an area of 10,000 acres. Everybody went into raptures over the scenery, which was not unlike the tamer parts of Loch Duich39 or Loch Carron, in Scotland, with the addition of an occasional mosque or tomb perched on the rocky heights. It was extremely pleasant, steaming slowly about; and, as the sun went down, gorgeous effects were produced behind the rocks and hills. Prettier still when it became dark and the lights began to twinkle on the hillsides, and in the tents, pitched in readiness for a dinner party to be given by Sir Salar Jung this evening. The drive home through the densely crowded tortuous streets was most amusing; though one never ceased wondering how the drivers, even with the aid of the active syces, managed to avoid running over somebody, so thoroughly careless did the throng of people appear of their own safety.

Mir Alam

Mir Alam, Hyderabad

The next day, February 11th, we were again awakened at a very early hour, and drove off to a spot in the Nizam's preserves, about six miles distant, where we were met by elephants, bullock and horse-tongas, and two cheetahs in carts, in readiness for the projected black-buck hunting expedition. Our guides strongly recommended us to select tongas instead of elephants as the mode of conveyance, saying that the black-buck have been so frequently hunted of late that they are alarmed at the sight of elephants. This advice proved good, for we soon afterwards found ourselves close to four fine animals. The cheetah which was to be first let loose, and which was carried on one of the tongas, became much excited, though he was blindfolded by a leathern mask and not allowed to see his prey until quite close to it. He stood up in the cart lashing his tail, and now and then curling it round the neck of the driver like a huge boa. When at last he was set free he darted forward and, after crouching behind a hillock waiting his opportunity, made a tremendous spring right on to the back of a buck, striking the poor animal such a blow on the side of the head that it must have been paralysed before the cruel teeth of the cheetah seized its throat. It was40 a splendid exhibition of brute strength and agility; but I carefully kept far enough away not to see any of the painful details which are inseparable from such sport, and which must, to me, always mar the pleasures of the chase.



Proceeding in another direction, we soon came across a large herd of black-buck; but the elephants had by this time caught us up, and the moment the deer perceived the huge creatures they bounded away. The elephants were therefore left behind with the horses, and we all seated ourselves on the tongas, creeping in this way quite near a herd of forty or fifty does, with six or eight fine bucks feeding with them. At one of these bucks the second and smaller41 cheetah was let go; but he could not make up his mind which buck to try for, whereby he lost both his opportunity and his temper, and went off sulkily into the jungle, from which his keeper had considerable difficulty in recapturing him.



We had in the meantime gone on with the first cheetah till we came to a herd of about eighty black-buck, and they allowed us to approach pretty close to them before starting off at a good round trot. The largest buck took alarm, and was out of sight in a moment; but by making a détour we managed to get near the others, and the cheetah was once more set free. After a moment's hesitation he fixed his attention upon the finest of the bucks in sight, and after a short gallop in pursuit made a tremendous spring upon his prey. This time, however, the cheetah missed his mark, and, falling short, rolled over ignominiously in the dust. Recovering himself in an instant, he made another and more successful spring, and despatched the poor buck with the usual quick, lightning-like stroke of the paw. The42 force with which the cheetah strikes his victim is marvellous. I have heard that a tiger can in the same way crush the head of a water-buffalo like an egg-shell; and the power of the cheetah's paw must be little less in proportion. It is, of course, well known that the tiger's retractile claws are like those of a cat, whereas the cheetah has toe-nails similar to those of a dog.

Death of the Buck

Death of the Buck

The drive back to the Residency seemed long and hot, and I was glad to rest awhile after our early excursion. Later in the forenoon we drove through the city, this time behind a team of Austrian greys, on our way to breakfast with Sir Salar Jung at the Barah Dari Palace. Sir Salar is Prime Minister to the present Nizam, and is the son of the eminent Indian statesman whose spare figure, clever face, well-cut clothes, and snowy turban were seen often during his visit to London twelve years ago. He received us very pleasantly, and showed us over his palace, built around a fine courtyard, with elaborately carved marble seats at intervals. The palace itself contains quantities of European chandeliers, musical boxes, portraits in oil of past Nizams, Maharajahs, and Governors-General. Sir Salar has also a fine collection of Indian arms, and we were shown the skin of an enormous tiger killed by himself only last week.

Breakfast was served in a most delightful verandah overlooking a courtyard with flashing fountains and green and shady trees, the table being prettily decorated, and the meal arranged in the most approved European fashion.

Afterwards we returned to the Residency, and the hottest hours of the day were spent in reading and writing. At four o'clock I again drove out with Mr. Furdonji Jamsetjee, the Minister's private secretary, passing through the picturesque and interesting native bazaars. The narrow whitewashed streets lined with little shops, gaily decorated with gold and bright colours, form a fitting background to the smartly43 dressed groups moving about among them. We did not pause to make any purchases, but stopped the carriage at many points to admire the motley crowd and the curious and beautiful mosques and temples.

We were fortunate enough to meet two processions, one literally a 'wedding march,' and the other a numerous company of Hindoo worshippers. First came a noisy, turbulent crowd of native soldiery, escorting a young man mounted on a very fat horse, dressed in gorgeous kincob, with eight people holding an enormous umbrella over him. This proved to be the bridegroom, and he was followed by many elephants and camels. As for the unfortunate bride, she was immured in a closely covered palanquin decorated with red velvet and gold. How she could live and breathe and have her being in such an airless box will always be a mystery to me, for we were gasping for breath in our open carriage. The second procession consisted of many more elephants and camels, with the addition of bands of brass and other noisy instruments. The central figure of this cavalcade seemed to be an old priest carrying on his head a bulky package wrapped in green cloth, which, I heard, was an offering to be made in an adjacent temple.

Hyderabad is unlike any other city I have yet seen in India, and, indeed, is said to resemble no other Eastern town. Nowhere, not even in the seaports, is there so mixed a population. As Mr. Edwin Arnold says, 'You see the Arab, short and square, with his silver-bound matchlock and daggers; the black-faced Sidi; the Robilla, with blue caftan and blunderbuss; the Pathan; the Afghan, dirty and long-haired; the Rajput, with his shield of oiled and polished hide; Persians, Bokhara men, Turks, Mahrattas, Madrasses, Parsees, and others.' The people are all allowed to carry arms—a privilege of which they fully avail themselves, evidently regarding daggers, knives, matchlocks, and a sword44 or two, as fit finery for festivities and merry-makings of every kind.

Mosque Entrance

Mosque Entrance

Notwithstanding their ferocious appearance, the people of Hyderabad are not more quarrelsome or turbulent than those of other cities, and recourse is very seldom had to these swords, daggers, or guns. The inlaying of arms and the sale of so-called ancient weapons to curiosity-collectors is, naturally, one of the specialities of Hyderabad. An immense quantity were brought to the Residency this morning for our inspection, and they made a glittering display in the marble portico. Among them were swords with watered blades,45 called johurdas, and worth several hundreds of pounds; besides innumerable scimitars of every shape, rapiers, blunderbusses, and exquisitely ornamented but treacherous-looking daggers and other stabbing instruments.

It has amused us much during our stay here to watch the elephants taking their baths. The Nizam owns three hundred of these big beasts, and all the nobles possess elephants in proportion to their rank and wealth. The huge creatures are driven down to the river night and morning, and it was most curious to see the unwieldy animals lay themselves flat down on their sides in the shallow water, so that nothing but a small island of body, so to speak, was visible, while an occasional lazy switch of tail or wave of trunk indicated the languid feeling of pleasure and contentment enjoyed by the bathers. Their keepers, helped by a small boy who clambered up their steep sides, assisted the cleansing process by scrubbing them vigorously with a sort of stable-broom. As soon as one side was thoroughly cleaned the boy jumped off, and at the word of command, with a tremendous upheaval, and amid a great displacement of water, the huge beast flopped down again on its cleansed side, uttering a prodigious grunt of satisfaction, and quite ready for the same process to be repeated. Such a splashing was never seen; especially when, as chanced to be the case whilst we were driving past, fifteen elephants were taking their baths at the same time. I felt quite afraid that one little baby elephant, who had timidly followed its mother, would be overwhelmed and drowned by the wallowing and flounderings of the older animals.

Saturday, February 12th.—Our early expeditions of the last two mornings have been so tiring, that I determined to remain quietly at home to-day until it was time to go to breakfast with the Nizam at eleven o'clock. At half-past ten his Highness's beautiful coaches came for us; and—Mr.46 Cordery and I leading the way—we drove through the Chowk, one of the broadest streets of the city, to the palace. This is reached through the stables; and the horses, evidently waiting inspection, were standing with their heads out of the doors of their boxes; their grooms, in yellow tunics, blue trousers, and red waist-bands much trimmed with silver, being stationed at the animals' heads. At one corner of the quadrangle in which the stables are built is a passage leading to a second and larger square, crowded by numbers of the Nizam's retainers. We passed through this to a third courtyard (said to cover as much ground as Lincoln's Inn Fields), and there alighted, at the bottom of a fine flight of marble steps, overlooking a charming garden with the usual tank in the centre. The effect was, however, rather spoilt to European eyes by a very ill-cast bronze figure, holding in its hand a large coloured air-ball, such as are sold in the streets of London for a penny each. The Nizam (now about twenty-one years of age) is so delighted with these balls that he has ordered two hundred of them, so that when one explodes it may be replaced immediately.

From the entrance-hall, marble corridors, from which hung handsome glass chandeliers, led into the centre room of a fine suite of apartments, where the Nizam shortly afterwards joined us. At breakfast I sat between his Highness and his chief aide-de-camp, neither of whom touched anything, except a glass of iced water and a cup of tea, during the whole of a very long meal. Subsequently the Nizam kindly caused all his best horses and ponies to be brought to the foot of the marble steps for us to see. There were Arabs of high degree, thoroughbred English horses, and very good-looking Walers among them, besides some tiny ponies, four of which, when harnessed together, drew a real Cinderella coach of solid silver. Although I delighted in looking at these beautiful animals, I became so tired that I had to make my escape. Some of47 the party stayed and went through the stables, harness-rooms, and coach-houses, which must, from their account, have been well worth seeing. They were especially struck by the perfect training of the horses, who seemed as docile as kittens, and would jump in and out of their stalls, take a straw out of their groom's mouth, and when told to 'go' would dash off wildly round the garden (to the great detriment of the flowers and plants), returning instantly to their stables at the word of command.

From the Nizam's palace I drove to see the wife of the Finance Minister, Mehdi Ali—an intelligent lady, who speaks English wonderfully well; in fact, she expressed herself so perfectly that it was difficult to believe she had scarcely spoken a word of our language for more than a year and a half. It seemed sad to hear that she never went out, because she did not care to go 'covered up,' and that such had been the seclusion of her existence, that she scarcely knew any animals by sight, except from pictures, and had no pets, except, as she said, 'pet books.' She showed me the books gained as prizes at college by her two nephews, with evident appreciation of their contents, one being Prescott's 'History of America,' and the other a translation of Homer's 'Iliad.' I parted with her after receiving the usual garland of honour on leaving, feeling grateful that Providence had not placed me behind a purdah, but had allowed me to go about and see the world for myself instead of having to look at it through other people's eyes.

The midday heat was so great that we gladly rested at the Residency until it became time to go to tea with Khurseed Jah, whose house is only a little distance off. We were received at the entrance to the garden by our host and his son, who led us to a marble platform by the side of a tank on which three boats were floating. One of these had the name of 'Sunbeam' painted upon it; but the compliment must have been48 paid some time ago, for both boat and paint looked decidedly shabby. On a marble platform in the centre of the tank a band was playing. My little girls embarked for a row in the boat, discarding the services of the four boatmen who, apparently disliking, like Othello, to find 'their occupation gone,' jumped into the water and swam after them. Their black heads and copper-coloured shoulders looked so funny following the erratic movements of the boat!

The Hamyan Jump, Delhi The Hamyan Jump, Delhi

We were offered ices, tea, coffee, and other good things, whilst the band played its liveliest airs. Presently old-fashioned bath-chairs arrived to take us up by an avenue of palms to the house, where the Nawab showed us photographs49 and portraits of various distinguished people, and—with natural pride—the preparations he is making for a Jubilee dinner on the 16th, when he will entertain 300 guests in a spacious marquee. The whole place is now encumbered with bullock-carts, bringing up stores, provisions, and wines for this great occasion.

The Nawab earnestly pressed us to fix a day on which he might be allowed to entertain us; but want of time made this hospitable plan impossible. On parting he presented us each with a bouquet, as well as with the usual bottles of scent, the number of which varies, I observe, according to the position of the recipient. On these occasions I find my number is generally eight, but occasionally only six; while some of the party get four, and others the still more modest allotment of two bottles apiece. The drive home, through the cool air beneath the bright stars, amid the twinkling lights, and the cries and 'chatterification' of birds going to bed, as well as the flutter of flying-foxes skimming overhead as they hurried forth on their nocturnal predatory expeditions, was really the pleasantest part of the day.

In the evening there was a dinner party at the Residency, which included Sir Salar Jung, his brother Mooner-ul-Mulk, and several European guests. Sir Salar is of gigantic physical proportions, and well merits his sobriquet of 'mountain-man.' He has been a great deal in England, and is well acquainted with European manners and customs. Colonel Marshall, another of the guests, who since the retirement of the Nizam's former tutor has acted as his Highness's private political adviser, will be a great addition to the English element in Hyderabad. He has already occupied a similar position with the Rajah of Chumba, and has thus gained much experience to fit him for his delicate task here. There are many private cabals and intrigues among the nobles, as well as among the relatives of the Nizam, and little interest is taken50 in the administration of public affairs. Many amusing stories are related of the inevitable rivalry between the nobles, and I was told that, one of them having assumed the title of 'Glory of the Sun,' his nearest relative and rival immediately capped it by taking upon himself the transcendent appellation of 'Glory of the Heavens.'

On the morning of February 13th we had to get up very early in order to start for Bombay viâ Poonah, all our luggage having been sent to the station overnight. Unfortunately our little party now comprises two invalids, for Mr. McLean has been ill for some days past, while Mr. des Graz is suffering from a touch of sunstroke. Before starting, Mr. Cordery took us round the beautiful garden of the Residency to see the preparations to celebrate the Jubilee. The outline of the house is to be illuminated with butties, little earthenware or glass pots filled with wicks floating in cocoa-nut oil, like those used at South Kensington. The grounds are also to be lighted up with pretty arcades formed of palms, and hung with lanterns; while beyond the garden is a large open space, where quantities of fireworks are to be let off.

By Colonel Marshall's desire, Ulett brought the Nizam's state coach—a huge canary-coloured, boat-shaped vehicle, hung on the most elastic of Cee springs, with solid silver railings, trimmings, and canopy supports—to convey us to the station. The coachman wore a canary-coloured livery (the royal colour of Hyderabad) stiff with silver brocade; and the eight attendants were dressed in yellow, blue, and red costumes. There were several other state carriages, so that we formed quite a little procession; and just as we reached the station Afsur Jung, the Nizam's aide-de-camp, drove up to bid us farewell, in a pretty little dog-cart drawn by four Pegu ponies. At 8.45 precisely the train steamed off, after much hand-shaking and many good wishes from a large group of kind friends, who51 had each and all brought nosegays, so that the saloon was turned for that day into a perfect garden.

We breakfasted comfortably in the train; but later the sun began to blaze down so fiercely upon us, that I fear our two invalids must have found the heat and the shaking of the carriages rather trying. We reached Wadi at three o'clock, and Hingoli about seven in the evening—very tired. This is the junction for Bijapur, one of the most ancient cities of India, and once the capital of the Deccan. Its walls are of immense extent, and it is guarded by a fort six miles in circumference. In fact, what is now called the city is only the ruins of that portion of it which used to be enclosed within the fort. The mosques and tombs are of great interest, and I am sorry there was not time to visit them. The mosque and tomb of Ibrahim Rozah are said to be unsurpassed by anything of the kind in India. They are, however, carefully described by Mr. Fergusson in his 'History of Architecture;' and he also gives full details about the many fine ruins of Bijapur, including the Gol Gumbaz, or Round Dome—a mausoleum built in honour of Sultan Muhammad VII.—the Cathedral Mosque, and the Ark, or Citadel.

No Coal No Coal

On Monday, February 14th, at 5 a.m., we reached Poonah, the capital of the Mahratta country, 120 miles distant from Bombay. Here we were shunted into a siding, where Dr. Hoffmeister soon joined us, bringing good news of all on board52 the 'Sunbeam,' which had had a splendid passage of fifty-two hours down from Kurrachee to Bombay, making the shortest run on record entirely under sail. He also eased our minds by his favourable opinion of our invalids, though his examination could be but superficial.

Mr. Crawford, the Commissioner, appeared about eight o'clock, with several carriages, and kindly insisted upon our spending the day at his house, which, I need scarcely say, was a very pleasant plan. He first took us for a drive round the city to the Government House, called Ganesh Khind, where the Governor of Bombay lives for several months in the year. It was delicious to stroll about the charming grounds, but it was equally pleasant to return to breakfast at the Commissioner's bungalow, which stands on the banks of the Mula River. Mr. Crawford is a great horticulturist, and has surrounded his dwelling with a beautiful garden, filled with a profusion of all sorts of acclimatised plants, flowers, trees, and fruits. The crotons, dracænas, and ferns seemed particularly fine, and two arcades of bamboo trellis leading from the house to the river-bank made very pretty features in the sylvan scene.

A poultry-yard stands next to the garden, filled at this moment by a great many fowls, all ready for the Poultry Show next week. I had heard of this Show a few weeks ago, and was much pleased to see some of my own birds, which I had sent for from the yacht, holding their own against fine specimens from all parts of the world. They had, of course, originally been brought from England for the prosaic purpose of forming an addition to our larder, a fate from which they have happily escaped, as they will not now return to the 'Sunbeam.' There was also a miniature zoological-garden, containing a numerous collection of deer and smaller animals, including a sweet little monkey, with which the children, of course, immediately fell in love.53

Interior, Delhi Interior, Delhi

At breakfast we had the unexpected pleasure of meeting our old friends Major and Mrs. Hannay. He is now aide-de-camp to the Duke of Connaught, and, directly our meal was over,54 he had to hurry off to look after the preparations for the ball which is to be given by H.R.H. to-night in honour of the Jubilee. The date of this ball was only fixed twenty-four hours ago, and there is naturally a great deal to be done, though people in India seem to take these sudden arrangements quite as a matter of course. The Duke and Duchess of Connaught had graciously telegraphed to Hyderabad to ask us to stay at Poonah for the ball; so, though difficult to manage, we have decided to remain for the earlier part at any rate, and to leave by the 11 p.m. train, which will bring us to Bombay early to-morrow morning.

After the usual siesta and five o'clock tea, I went with the Commissioner to attend a meeting of the ladies' committee of the Poultry Show, held in a tent on the spot where the Show is to take place. All the arrangements seemed excellent, and there was nothing for me to do but to express warm approval. We then went for a short drive through the principal streets of Poonah, which includes a picturesque native town, besides charming suburbs where the bungalows are half buried in gardens. The well-known Bund Road, surrounded by hills, has been so often and so well described that it would be absurd for me to attempt to say anything about it after the hasty glimpse caught during the pleasant drives of this morning and afternoon.

Directly after dinner we went in an open carriage to the ball at the Gymkhana. The bright lights and lamps of a long row of carriages waiting outside made a pretty and animated scene as we drove up. The guests were received at the entrance to the ball-room by the Duke and Duchess of Connaught. H.R.H. danced the first quadrille with me, and the next two with Mabelle and Maude Laurence. We were pressed to prolong our stay until to-morrow; this was, unfortunately, impossible, for we are already overdue in Bombay.55 At a quarter to eleven I left the ball-room, and the young ladies followed shortly afterwards. We went straight to the station, and, re-entering the train, were again shunted on to the main line, starting at last on the final stage of our journey to Bombay.


Bengal Lancer--Rawul Pindi

Bengal Lancer—Rawul Pindi



I LOOKED out of the carriage window for some time upon the distant ghauts, and the nearer and fantastically shaped rocks with their tropical vegetation, now bathed in moonlight, until at last I happily dropped off to sleep, and remember nothing more until we reached Bombay at 7 a.m.

There we found Mr. Kindred and the men from the yacht waiting to meet us. Leaving them to look after the luggage,57 the Doctor and I got our two invalids into gharries, and drove at once to Malabar Point to stay with the Governor and Lady Reay. Tom shortly afterwards appeared and surprised us by his description of the unprecedentedly quick run of the 'Sunbeam' from Kurrachee. Then Lady Reay and Captain Hamilton came to welcome us, having just returned from their morning ride. Breakfast over, the rest of the morning was busily spent in writing and in getting things into order.

In the afternoon we drove with Captain Hamilton along the Breach Candy road to the famous Towers of Silence, or Parsee cemetery, where we were met by Sir Jamsetjee Jejeebhoy's secretary, who conducted us over this most interesting place and explained fully the Parsee method of disposing of their dead and the religious motives which led to its adoption. Much as the explanation interested me, I will not repeat it here; but I must notice the beauty of the view from the Prayer-rooms, and the solemn stillness of the garden below, where the relatives of the departed come to talk peacefully over their memories. However admirable the arrangement may be from a sanitary point of view, I never could get reconciled to the presence of the vultures, though they were not at all unpicturesque, for their unwieldy copper-coloured bodies contrasted well with the massive and brilliant foliage.

From the Towers of Silence we drove in a kind of quadruple dog-cart, with four seats facing alternately outwards, forwards, and backwards, and drawn by a fiery pair of horses, through the native town to the yacht. The view from the road, cut, as it is, in the side of the Malabar hill, was both beautiful and striking. It looks down upon a perfect sea of palm-leaves, gently waving in the breeze, which conceal, save where the tower of some tall building peeps forth, a city of more than 800,000 inhabitants.58

The Ghauts, Bombay The Ghauts, Bombay

Four o'clock of the morning of February 16th found me in the verandah outside our bungalow, listening to the roaring of the cannon, which ushered in the day on which was to be celebrated in India the Jubilee of Victoria, its Queen and Empress. The hours are early here, and at a quarter to eight Lady Reay, Captain Gordon, Tom, and I started to 'assist' at the grand ceremony at the Town Hall, followed later by the Governor and his aides-de-camp. As we neared the city the crowd became greater, everyone being dressed in holiday attire, and all apparently in a great state of enthusiasm and excitement. It looked like a many-tinted bed of flowers; for the Parsee ladies, unlike their Mahomedan and Hindoo sisters, have no dislike to display their toilettes in public, and are always59 clad in the gayest colours, arranged with perfect taste. The only specially distinctive mark in their costume is a rather unbecoming white band drawn tightly over the brow. In many cases, however, this had been judiciously pushed back so far as nearly to disappear under the bright-coloured silk sari which only partly concealed their jet-black and glossy tresses. Every Parsee has to wear the sacred shirt of cotton gauze, and the Kusti, or cord of seventy-two woollen threads, representing, like the divisions of the Towers of Silence, the numbers of the chapters of one of the sacred books.

Near the Town Hall the scene became still more animated, and the applause of the multitude, though much more subdued in tone than the roar of an English crowd, was quite as enthusiastic. The men from H.M.S. 'Bacchante' lined the approaches to the building, and the Bombay Volunteers acted as a guard-of-honour. We were ushered into the gallery, where chairs were placed for Lady Reay and myself close to the Governor's throne. The sight from this 'coign of vantage' was indeed imposing. Immediately in front stretched a fine flight of steps, covered with red cloth, and crowded with European and native officials in every variety of costume. The approach to the steps was through a pretty garden, where the wealth of tropical vegetation was set off by flags and gaily coloured banners. A dense crowd of natives ringed this enclosure round, whilst lofty houses, their gaily draped balconies and windows filled with bright and happy faces, made a brilliant background. Presently the Governor was seen approaching, escorted by his own bodyguard and a company of mounted volunteers (now called the Bombay Light Horse), who looked very picturesque and soldierlike as they dashed through the crowd. All dismounted at the west entrance to the garden, where a procession was formed, at the head of which the Governor advanced and, amid a60 flourish of trumpets, took his stand in front of the throne to receive the addresses and telegrams presented by, or on behalf of, various classes of the community in the Bombay Presidency. No less than fifty-eight congratulatory telegrams from public bodies in the Mofussil had been received, and, after leave asked and granted, a number of deputations were introduced, who presented their documents enclosed in handsome caskets or in kincob bags. Almost the first telegram came from his Highness Aga Sultan Mahomed Shah, a61 potentate who is regarded by his followers with great awe and reverence. Then followed a message from the Rao of Cutch, enclosed in a beautifully embroidered bag, succeeded by many others. Fortunately all save two were 'taken as read,' the exceptions being the address presented by the inhabitants of Bombay and by the Senate of the University. The presentation of the caskets, some of which were quite works of art, occupied a long, long time. One casket seemed to be covered with a sort of lacework of ivory and ebony, and was still further ornamented by wreaths studded with gold and exquisitely modelled figures of elephants and wild beasts. Others, again, were of ebony profusely inlaid with silver.

Bodyguard and Peon, Malabar Point

Bodyguard and Peon, Malabar Point

The Governor's replies to the addresses were most happy, and evidently touched the feelings of his hearers. As he uttered his final words two young middies, perched on a dangerous-looking corner of the parapet, scrambled on to the roof, and, at a given signal, smartly unfurled an immense Royal Standard, amid the thunder of an imperial salute of 101 guns. The effect of the whole scene was deeply impressive, as well as suggestive. I have seen many ceremonies both at home and abroad, but never one more picturesque or of more thrilling interest.

From the town hall we went, still in procession, to the cathedral, which stands close to the Elphinstone Garden, where a musical service was held. 'God save the Queen' was magnificently rendered, and the two specially written verses which were added to the National Anthem were most effective.

After service the Governor and Lady Reay, with their aides-de-camp, in one carriage, and we in another, returned to Malabar Point, where we were only too glad to put off our finery and rest quietly indoors until half-past four, precisely at which hour we had to resume our war-paint and go, again in procession, to Parel, to meet their Royal Highnesses, the Duke62 and Duchess of Connaught. The road lay through the poorer part of the city, but was made gay and interesting by the crowd of people through which we passed, and by the preparations which all were busily making to take part in the Jubilee.

Parel is the official residence of the Governor of Bombay; much larger than, but not nearly so agreeable as, the house at Malabar Point; however, each successive Governor appears to entertain a different opinion on this subject, and Lord Reay's predecessor preferred Parel. The garden, with its fine trees and luxuriant vegetation, is pretty, but not very private; for a Hindoo house, much used for marriages, stands on one side of the tank which borders it, while the tramway almost touches it on the other. The house itself, originally a Portuguese chapel and monastery, is three-storeyed, and contains some fine spacious rooms. The present Governor intends to give up Parel for the use of the Victoria Technical Institute till a more suitable building can be found.

In the adjoining bungalow a substantial tea, with all sorts of cooling drinks, was temptingly arranged among masses of flowers and greenery. The servants from Malabar Point seemed to have arrived by magic, and their picturesque liveries added much to the brilliancy of the scene. The refreshments proved not to be by any means useless, for the Duke and Duchess of Connaught had commenced the day at Poonah by inspecting the troops on horseback at 7 a.m.; and this was closely followed by the opening of the Poultry Show and several other functions, to say nothing of a railway journey of six hours in the heat of the day from Poonah to Bombay.

In a pleasant, informal way, we were then told off to carriages from which to see the illuminations, an escort of cavalry and of the bodyguard being provided to prevent, as far as possible, our small procession being broken up by the63 crowd. In the suburbs the illuminations were general but simple in design. There was a more pretentious display in front of the Veterinary Hospital, consisting of transparent pictures of horses and cows. This hospital was established by Sir Dinshaw Manockjee Petit, one of the largest mill-owners of Bombay, who has received the honour of knighthood as a Jubilee gift.



Presently the crowd became more numerous, and began to run alongside the carriages, shouting, and carrying blue lights, a compliment with which we could well have dispensed; for the smoke, the clouds of powder which they occasionally threw into the air, the dust raised as they rushed along, and the general heat and want of air in the narrow streets, had a stifling effect. The illuminations were not only artistically beautiful, but afforded a proof that members of every religion and class had united to do honour to their Sovereign. Among the most striking buildings were a Mahomedan Mosque, the lines of which were clearly defined against the starlit sky by rows of pure white lanterns; a Hindoo temple, where court within court was lighted in a simple and effective manner by butties filled with cocoa-nut oil; and several Jain temples brightly illuminated with coloured lights. In the native quarter the houses were lighted up in the peculiar Indian fashion by chandeliers suspended from the windows or across the streets—perhaps the most wonderful part of the scene.

After driving through the crowded streets we proceeded to the Apollo Bunder—now officially called the Wellington Pier—to witness the illumination of the harbour and the grand display of fireworks. The harbour, with its thousands and thousands of twinkling lights, was a sight to be remembered. Even the little 'Sunbeam,' though somewhat overshadowed by the huge 'Bacchante,' displayed with good effect a row of coloured lights from stem to stern.

As we drove home we much admired the illumination of64 the public gardens on the Malabar Hill. The name 'Victoria' was written in lines of fire on its steep slopes, and was reflected with beautiful effect in the still waters of the bay.

Just before reaching home the horses in our carriage took to jibbing, and after nearly being precipitated over a wall and down an embankment we thought it better to get out and walk, which made us rather late for dinner. We were not alone in misfortune, however, for another of the carriages had collided with a tramcar; and a horse in yet another vehicle, in which the A.D.C.'s were driving, severely injured itself.

The next morning (Thursday, February 17th) we were all rather late—that is to say, for this part of the world. Personally, I began to work between seven and eight o'clock, and consequently got through a good deal before breakfast. Afterwards a succession of visitors arrived, friendly, complimentary, and on business, among the latter being many tradesmen, anxious to press their wares upon us. The verandah was soon crowded by box-wallahs, who squatted in the midst of their piles of brilliantly coloured silks, gauze, and muslins, or arrived laden with specimens of heavy lacquered-work, carved ivory, sandal-wood, Poonah inlaid work, arms, and jewels. A verandah at the back of the chief bungalow, containing the reception-rooms, had meanwhile been completely filled by a long table, on which was displayed a magnificent collection of jewels belonging to a well-known jeweller and diamond merchant. Brilliants of the size of walnuts were there by the dozen, side by side with huge emeralds; bracelets composed of hundreds of shining gems; a tiara of diamonds formerly belonging to the Empress of the French; rings with precious stones of such dimensions that none but a large finger could wear them; and altogether such a mixture of Oriental and European splendour, and ancient and modern fashions, as one would scarcely have imagined it possible to collect together. We made no purchases, but the65 wealthy jeweller was quite pleased to have the opportunity of displaying his splendid wares. A compliment from the Governor seemed to satisfy him completely; and before we had been five minutes at lunch the whole of his valuable stock was stowed away in two or three common-looking little boxes, tied up in cloth, and so transported back to his strong box. I do not profess to be a judge of jewels, but those who knew more of such things than I did estimated the value of the collection at over a million sterling.

Early in the afternoon I had to hurry off to the yacht to receive a large party on board. In the evening a ball was given by the Governor at Malabar Hill. It was a brilliant entertainment in celebration of the Jubilee.

The Apollo Bunder The Apollo Bunder

Everything had been well arranged: the drawing-room with its perfect floor formed a beautiful ball-room, whilst in both verandahs stood plenty of sofas and lounges. On each side of the house the garden paths leading to the water's edge were66 illuminated, fireworks being discharged from boats at intervals. The ships in the harbour were also dressed with fire instead of bunting. Above all, the air felt deliciously cool. On one side of the house bountiful supper-tables, decorated with large baskets of flowers, had been laid out under awnings spread beneath the trees. The band was perfect, and though the ball was by no means over at that hour, it must have been quite three o'clock before we all retired.

On Friday, February 18th, we had another busy morning, making various arrangements for sea. Mr. McLean had been pronounced well enough to go home by to-day's P. & O. steamer, which he was anxious to do, for he is to row in the Oxford Eight. Pratt, the steward, who has been with us during our journey through India, has been unwell for some time past, and is therefore recommended by the Doctor to return at the same time. We had always intended to send home my dear and clever poodle 'Sir Roger' from Bombay; his place on the steamer had been secured, and all his little belongings sent on board. Mabelle and I went off to the yacht in the morning. About three o'clock Tom arrived, and at once went off with Mr. McLean and Pratt. They found 'Sir Roger' already established on board the steamer, but looking so utterly miserable that, knowing well how sorry we were to part with him, Tom insisted on bringing him back again. The poor dog has seemed quite crestfallen for some days past, and yesterday, instead of remaining quietly in my room at Government House, as he always does when I go out without him, he escaped and hid himself under the Governor's chair, only giving occasional notice of his presence by a short, nervous bark.

After the departure of the steamer Mabelle and I had only just sufficient time to reach Government House to be present at Lady Reay's purdah party, to which only ladies are admitted. The entertainment derives its name from the purdah, or curtain, behind which Mahomedan and Hindoo67 ladies are supposed to live, veiled from the sight of men. Lady Reay's visitors were all dressed in their best, and seemed full of delight at this pleasant incident in their monotonous life; but their ways of showing enjoyment were various and amusing. Some wanted only to look on; others were glad to talk to any English lady who could converse with them, while others again were much taken up with the sweetmeats and ices. The behaviour of two ladies amused me immensely. Their servant having awkwardly upset and broken a glass, spilling the contents on the floor, they immediately flew at her and slapped her so hard that the sound of the blows could be plainly heard all over the room. The woman did not seem to resent this treatment in the least, for she only laughed and proceeded to pick up the pieces.

Bombay Harbour

Bombay Harbour

Several of these ladies asked me to allow them to go on board the yacht; and when the others found that I had promised to try to make arrangements to preserve the purdah properly, they all wanted to come. I found, therefore, there was nothing for it but to give a large party on the only vacant day left to us before our departure from Bombay. Mrs. H. Ali was specially interested in the matter when she found68 that we intended to call, if possible, at Jinjeera on our way to Ceylon, and to see the Nawab, who has married her youngest daughter as his second wife.

Omnibus Horse Tope Omnibus-horse Tope

Some of the dresses were quite gorgeous, and would take long to describe. The Parsees looked slim and graceful as Greek girls, their saris of bright satin or silk hanging in light folds and showing the strips of delicate narrow embroidery with which they were ornamented. The Hindoo ladies draped their saris around them; while the Mahomedans, with their bright-coloured trousers, skirts, and yashmaks, made a vivid contrast to the other guests. The skirts of some of the ladies were so full that they stuck out further than any crinoline ever seen, and must, I am sure, have had more than a hundred yards of satin in them. When it was time to leave, it was curious to see how closely all the ladies veiled. Some of the attendants were provided with bundles which proved to be immense veils. These they threw over their mistresses, shrouding completely both face and figure.

When this reception was over I had to dress and hurry down to the yacht to receive a party of my own friends, after which we all returned to Malabar Point to dinner.

The Byculla Club Ball, at which their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Connaught were present, took place in the evening; a splendid affair, held in spacious well-arranged rooms.

Hindoo Girl

Hindoo Girl

Next morning early the children went for a ride with their father and Captain Hamilton, and after breakfast there arrived69 a continuous stream of box-wallahs and visitors until midday. The Guicowar of Baroda called to see the Governor, while Lady Reay and I sat in the verandah chatting with Captain Elliot, who has been till recently the Prince's tutor. The Guicowar speaks English well, not only correctly and fluently, but idiomatically. He is loyal to British rule, and the object of the present visit was to obtain a further supply of arms for his soldiers; it having been considered desirable policy to encourage him to form a large force of cavalry, which might be found valuable as auxiliaries. His adopted mother,70 too, is a remarkable woman. During the last Russian scare she offered to equip a band of Amazons for service in the field.

After this visit many preparations had to be made for resuming our voyage; but they were finished in time to allow Tom and me, accompanied by Mrs. Keating, Captain Hamilton, and the children, to drive down early in the afternoon to see the annual race-meeting at Byculla. The races are almost entirely in the hands of Arabs, and are as a rule well worth seeing.

One of the most interesting sights to me was a group of horse-dealers from Arabia and the Persian Gulf. They have handsome faces and clear olive complexions, soft silky hair and moustache, and beautifully trimmed beards. These picturesquely attired men import large quantities of horses into India, and easily sell them, either singly or in batches, to other dealers.

At the Children's Ball At the Children’s Ball

From the racecourse we drove to the Oval, where 15,000 schoolchildren were to be feasted in celebration of the Jubilee. Being rather late, we met many of them coming away singing hymns and songs.

After this short glimpse of the children's festival we hurried on board to receive the Duke and Duchess of Connaught at dinner, and the Governor and Lady Reay. Captain Moore kindly sent the band of the 'Bacchante' to play to us, and after dinner several middies from the flagship joined our little party. It was truly delightful to sit on deck in the cool evening breeze and listen to the sweet strains of the music. At half-past ten we71 embarked in the steam-launch to look at the fireworks and the illumination of the shipping.



February 20th.—Attended the beautiful evening service in the cathedral. The crew of the 'Sunbeam' accompanied us. The cool drive back to charming Malabar Point was most refreshing, and we enjoyed our quiet dinner and pleasant chat afterwards in the verandah, notwithstanding the sad reflection that it was our last evening with our dear and kind friends.

February 21st.—This morning the children went out early with a large riding party. After breakfast I had to hurry on board to make the final arrangements for the visit of the purdah ladies, and for our start this evening. It was rather a difficult matter to get our visitors on board the big steam-launch and other boats without visible masculine assistance; but all was accomplished safely and satisfactorily, and they mustered in great force. I think they all enjoyed this little expedition, with its novel experiences, greatly.

As soon as the last lady had departed we hurried off to attend the St. John's Ambulance Meeting at the Secretariate, at which the Governor kindly presided. I earnestly hope it may be the means of reviving in Bombay some interest in the rather languishing local branch of a very useful institution. Many influential people were present, including doctors, large mill-owners, railway and police officials, and employers of labour generally, all of whom appeared warmly disposed to support the movement.

Directly after this meeting, Tom, who had intended to go on board the yacht with Lord Reay, was carried off by the bishop to see the Sailors' Institute. I therefore returned to the 'Sunbeam' alone, to see to various matters, and, later on, went back to Government House, where, as is nearly always the case, we had to dress for dinner in a desperate hurry. There was a large party assembled, among others being Sir Lepel Griffin.72

All too soon came the last parting; and, in a long procession of barouches, phaetons, tandems, and dog-carts, we drove down to the Bunder, descending the steps for the last time with Maude Laurence (who is shortly returning to England), Captain Hamilton, Mr. Herbert, Major Gilchrist, and several other friends who had come to see us off. It was a sad business.

Map of India

Map of India


The Arch of the Viceroys, Goa The Arch of the Viceroys, Goa



February 22nd.—We had been told that Jinjeera was seventy miles distant from Bombay. Our rate of progress being rather slow, we did not consult the chart until late in the afternoon, when we found great difficulty in making out the place at all. At last we discovered it, marked in the smallest of letters, close to the mouth of the Rajpoori River; Khassia, now in ruins, being on the opposite or north side. Instead of seventy, it proved to be only thirty-five miles from Bombay; so that we had actually overrun it. Knowing that we were expected, there was nothing to be done except to beat our way back against the wind during the night. It would have been a74 pleasant sail had it not been for the annoying loss of time which it involved.

Just before daybreak we saw the Rajpoori light, and the one at Kennery, twelve miles south of Bombay. About 9.30 a.m. the Nawab's brother came on board, and soon afterwards we proceeded to land. After rowing more than half round a curious island-fort, we arrived at the gateway, a small opening in the thick walls, where we were met by the Nawab himself, dressed in European costume, but wearing a red and gold turban, and surrounded by his native bodyguard.

The landing was rather difficult, for, owing to want of space, the boat had to be pushed in stern foremost. When this feat had been accomplished, some of the Nawab's followers brought chairs, and hoisted us with great dexterity to the top of the steps, where it was no easy matter to alight with the dignity proper to the occasion. Having received the salaams of the Nawab and returned his hearty welcome, we took a long walk all round the curious old fort of Jinjeera, built five hundred years ago. It contains many narrow passages designed for security, for they are entirely independent of the bastions, each of which is provided with its own little water-gate for the admission of supplies or the escape of the garrison in case of necessity. I found the walk very fatiguing owing to the heat, and so did many of the others.

The temperature would indeed have been unbearable but for an occasional puff of cooler air which reached us through the embrasures. Some of the guns were of Spanish manufacture, dated 1665, but most of them were lying useless on the ground. In no case would they avail much against modern ordnance; but the fort, owing to its natural advantages, would be difficult to attack. The present Nawab is of ancient descent, and one of his ancestors was an Admiral in75 the service of the Grand Mogul. At the time of the disruption of the Kingdom of Delhi the Nawab's State became independent, and has remained so ever since. He has about 70,000 subjects, in whose welfare he appears to take great interest. He has a shrewd face, is very English in appearance, and seems quite capable of looking after his own interests.[1]

Jinjeera Fort Jinjeera Fort

It was delightfully refreshing to be able to rest in a76 spacious bungalow after our tour of the fort was over; and still more delicious was a curious sort of punkah, peculiar to the district, which fanned us pleasantly. The Nawab accompanied us on our return to the yacht, and afterwards sent us a most acceptable Nazir, or present, of two huge bunches of bananas, as well as other fruits and vegetables, besides milk and ghee.

The Nawab's second wife, whose mother we had met at Bombay, is a pretty little girl of about thirteen. She came on board to see us, but many precautions to preserve the purdah had to be taken. It was necessary to observe this custom in deference to the prejudices of her people rather than to those of her husband. She had never been on board a yacht before, and was naturally much interested in all she saw.

Off Ratnagiri Off Ratnagiri

Soon after twelve we resumed our voyage to the southward before a deliciously cool breeze, which lasted for a considerable time. Further on, the coast seems to consist of a series of plateaux, varying in height from 200 to 600 feet, occasionally interrupted by a peak or a narrow strip of white beach, with here and there a small straggling town. At sunset we were off Ratnagiri, an ancient Mahratta fort connected with the mainland only by a narrow sandy neck. Its southern extremity is nearly 300 feet above the sea level, thus forming a headland, surmounted by a line of fortifications and bastions of great strength. The complete isolation of its position has doubtless caused it to be chosen as the place of detention of King Theebaw, who can have but little chance of escape. The entrance to the river lies to the eastward of the fort, and the intermediate space is covered with a luxuriant growth of cocoa-nut palms. The European station is to the northward, for the southern shore is rugged, and ends abruptly in cliffs and huge boulders. Small coasting steamers maintain as well as they can communication with the fort; but the approach is always difficult, and is almost impracticable during the south-west monsoon.77

Mr. Crawford, who was formerly Commissioner here, had kindly given notice of our probable visit; for we had been anxious to land if possible to see something of King Theebaw, and to inspect the excellent industrial school established here. The district used formerly to be the great recruiting-ground for the Bombay army; but the young men now prefer entering the school, which, from one point of view, seems a pity. It was with much regret that, after having made preparations for landing, we were obliged to abandon the idea of78 doing so; for it became both late and dark, thus adding too much to the difficulties, and even dangers, of the proposed expedition. We therefore sailed slowly past, throwing up rockets at long intervals, to indicate that we were proceeding on our course.

As the evening wore on the breeze dropped, and during the night we made but little progress.

February 25th.—A calm and somewhat sultry night. Daylight brought a delicious and welcome sea-breeze, before which we sailed rapidly on our southward course. The morning was devoted to a general tidying up, preparatory to settling down for our long voyage.

Over the memory of the latter portion of this day I wish that I could draw a veil; but, sad as is the story, and little as I desire to dwell upon it, it must be told.

Travelling, visiting, and sight-seeing had so completely occupied our time in India, that I had found upon my return to Bombay a vast accumulation of letters from England and elsewhere requiring attention; and as it was far beyond my strength to deal with them without assistance, I considered myself fortunate in securing the services, as temporary secretary, of a gentleman whom we had met at Bombay, and who had been strongly recommended to us. Mr. Frank White was at that time engaged on the staff of the 'Bombay Gazette,' and, as Special Correspondent, had accompanied the present as well as the former Governor of Bombay upon their official tours. Now, however, he was about to leave India in order to take up an appointment on the staff of the 'Melbourne Argus,' and we, as a matter of mutual convenience, offered him a passage to Australia in the 'Sunbeam,' which he accepted, apparently, with delight. These brief facts will account for his presence on board the 'Sunbeam.'

At luncheon to-day Mr. White was cheerful and full of79 conversation, giving us an interesting description of the annual migration of the members of the Bombay Government to Poona during the season of rains and monsoons. We had, as usual, coffee, cigarettes, and a little gossip on deck before recommencing our quiet occupations of reading or writing. Mr. White strolled aft, and I soon became immersed in my book. Suddenly I perceived a change in the vessel's movement, as if the helmsman were neglecting his duties, and directly afterwards heard the thrilling cry of 'Man overboard!' Of course a great commotion ensued, the men rushing up from below, all eager to render assistance. I ran aft, whence the cry had proceeded, seizing a life-buoy as I passed, but found that one had already been thrown over by the man at the helm, who exclaimed, 'That gentleman,' meaning poor Mr. White, 'has jumped overboard.' A boat was lowered, a man was sent up to the cross-trees, another on to the deck-house to keep a look-out, and the ship was put about in an incredibly short space of time. In the meanwhile hasty preparation of hot bottles, blankets, and other remedies was made on board, in case the boat should happily be successful in her search. But although she rowed over the exact spot many times, and picked up Mr. White's helmet and the life-buoy, nothing more could be discovered.

Vingora Rocks

Vingora Rocks

The agonised interest with which that little boat was watched80 by all on board will always live in my memory. Two men had jumped into her just as they had rushed on deck, without shirts or hats to protect them from the burning sun. Another was preparing to spring overboard when he was forcibly restrained by Tom, who saw that it would by this time be utterly useless. All on board worked with a will to get the vessel round and to lower every stitch of sail; no easy matter with every kite set, and the yacht running from ten to twelve knots before the wind.

From letters left behind it was painfully clear that a determination of many days past had just been accomplished. It appeared that Mr. White had questioned the doctor—who little suspected his object—as to how long it would take to stop the vessel when running with studdingsails set before a strong breeze. The unhappy man had constantly complained of inability to sleep, and he had been seen on deck the previous night long after everyone else had gone to bed. Of the motive for the rash act it is impossible to form an opinion. Borne down by physical and mental suffering, he must have been overcome by a temporary aberration of intellect, which rendered him for the moment irresponsible for his actions. I need not dwell on the terrible shock which the dreadful catastrophe caused to our hitherto happy little party. The evening was a sad one, and not even the excitement of making the lights off Goa, bringing the ship up, and anchoring for the night, or the prospect of an interesting excursion to-morrow, could raise our spirits or dissipate the depression caused by the sad event of the afternoon.

February 26th.—Orders had been given for steam to be ready in the launch by six o'clock, so that we might get ashore soon after daybreak, and thus avoid the heat of the midday sun, which is now becoming quite a serious matter. But the painful duty of collecting and packing up all poor Mr. White's things to be sent back to Bombay had first to be81 performed, and it was nearly half-past seven before we were ready to land.

Vingora Lighthouse Vingora Lighthouse

Just as we were starting, Mr. Norman Oliver, the Assistant Delegate at Goa, arrived alongside in his pretty little schooner yacht, of native design and build, but of English rig. He brought with him a very kind letter from Mr. H.D. Donaldson, the assistant engineer of the new Portuguese Railway, now in course of construction, to connect Goa with the English lines northward to Bombay and eastward to Madras. If only the inhabitants of Goa will make use of the new railway, it ought to be of the greatest value to them. Such, however, is their conservative disposition and so great is their pleasure in obstinately creating and maintaining, in the form of customs-duties, obstacles to commerce and free circulation, that it is considered probable that the railway will have to be continued some fifty miles to the southward, as far as the British port of Carwar, before any perceptible increase in the export of produce can be looked for. The line to Goa is now nearly completed, and will, it is hoped, be opened after the rains. Mr. Donaldson kindly proposed a tempting trip over it to the summit of the Sahyádri Mountains, or Ghâts, which form the eastern boundary of the Portuguese territory. Unfortunately we are already so much behind our time that we shall have to press forward as quickly as wind and waves will allow, if we mean to adhere to the original plan of our voyage with anything like punctuality.82

So many difficulties are thrown in the way of would-be visitors to the churches of Goa, that although Mr. Oliver had kindly sent his sepoy on to announce our arrival, and had written to the Administrador to ask leave, we were recommended to wait for an hour or two on board, to allow time for the necessary forms to be complied with. A refreshing sea-breeze was blowing, and at ten o'clock we decided to brave the sun and to proceed under the double awnings of the gig (towed by the steam-launch) across the bar and up the river towards Old Goa.

Portuguese Rowlock Portuguese Rowlock

From the sea, the Portuguese settlement looks like a series of promontories, each crowned by a fort, with the river Mandovi in the centre, running up into the interior between richly wooded banks. Its coast-line is some sixty or seventy miles long from north to south, and its greatest breadth about thirty miles. The entire territory is hilly, and intersected by numerous rivers, of which the Mandovi is the most important. Both the ancient and modern cities of Goa have been built on its banks. The promontories of Bardez and Salsette protect a fine harbour, capable of accommodating vessels of the largest tonnage during the greater part of the year. The climate of Goa is generally healthy, though smallpox and cholera have from time to time broken out there with great virulence.

Cape Goa Entrance

Cape Goa Entrance

Never was any place so totally unlike what I had expected—in fact, it did not in the least correspond to the idea which any of us had formed about it. The palace of the Governor83 (who was for over three centuries called the Viceroy) stands in the city of Pangim, or New Goa, which, as I have already said, has been built on the river Mandovi, about five miles from its mouth. Curiously enough, the present Governor of Goa is our old friend Captain da Carvalho, who commanded the corvette 'Affonso Albuquerque' when she brought the King of Portugal to Plymouth last year, and lay alongside us for a fortnight in lovely Barn Pool, under the shadow of the Mount Edgcumbe trees. As we steamed over the bar and, aided by a strong flood-tide, quickly ascended the river, we next came to the pretty village of Raibandar, passing between low reedy banks fringed with cocoa-nut palms and other vegetation. The distant Ghâts formed a fine background to the picture, which included several white-spired English-looking churches, perched here and there on convenient knolls. The inhabitants of the district, however, composed as they are of descendants of the original natives found here by the Portuguese conquerors at the beginning of the sixteenth century, with a84 subsequent slight admixture of European blood, bore no resemblance to the British type. Those whom we saw on the river wore scarcely any clothing, and paddled about in little canoes somewhat similar to those used in the South Sea Islands and Ceylon. These boats are extremely narrow, and are provided with an outrigger in the shape of an enormous rough block of wood, connected with the canoes by bent spars some four feet long.



After a pleasant voyage of about eleven miles in tow of the steam-launch, we were suddenly cast off at some steps leading to a small pier, in the midst of a large grove of palm-trees, and were told that we had reached our destination. But where was Goa? We were all expecting to see ruined palaces, churches, and houses; whereas all that was visible was one massive arch and gateway about a hundred yards distant, standing, like the Irishman's 'main gate,' in the centre of a field, with no wall on either side of it. Meaningless as it now looked, this was the celebrated Arco dos Vicereys, or Arch of the Viceroys, originally built in 1599, and composed of blocks of black granite, now partially whitewashed. Through this gateway each successive ruler of Goa passed on his way to the ancient capital; on which occasions it was always splendidly decorated. A statue of St. Catherine, patroness of the city of Goa, occupies an upper niche, while beneath her is a figure of Vasco de Gama, with features somewhat defaced by time. The façade used to be adorned with paintings representing incidents of the Portuguese war in the Indies; but they are now effaced by whitewash. The portico bears an inscription dedicating it to the Immaculate Conception, and commemorating the emancipation of Portugal from Spain in 1656.

By this time the heat had become so great that, finding no carriage was forthcoming, I had almost resolved to give up the idea of visiting the wonderful old palaces and churches which we had taken so much trouble to come and see; but85 Tom and the Doctor encouraged me to make an effort, and improvised a sort of carrying-chair for me. We accordingly proceeded up a steep hot road, through the aforesaid arch, to the Rua Direita, so called because it once led direct from the Palace of the Viceroys to the Church of Misericordia. The name has lost its meaning, for all that now remains of the splendid palace is a portion of the chief gateway, so small in extent that when we tried to take a photograph of it, the helmet of one of the gentlemen who chanced to stand some distance in front of the camera completely concealed it. Only 250 years ago the palace must have been the most conspicuous building in the city. At that time a large square stood in front of it to the south, surrounded by fine houses. A noble staircase led from this square to the principal hall of the palace, in which were hung pictures of most of the Portuguese ships which had come to India since the time of Vasco de Gama. In an inner hall the Viceroy, who then lived in a style of regal splendour, received ambassadors from the Indian princes, and transacted important business. Da Fonseca, in his historical and archæological description of the City of Goa, states that the Viceroy rarely stirred out of his palace, except to make a royal progress through the city. 'A day previous to his appearance in public, drums were beaten and trumpets sounded, as a signal to the noblesse and gentry to accompany him on the following day. Accordingly, early in the morning about three or four hundred hidalgos and courtiers appeared in the Terriero do Paço, clad in rich attire, mounted on noble steeds with gold and silver trappings glittering with pearls and precious stones, and followed by European pages in rich livery.' The palace began to fall into decay when the city was abandoned; and although from time to time there was an idea of repairing it, the work was never seriously undertaken. In 1820 a considerable portion of the splendid building was ordered to be knocked down; and though the86 remainder stood for some time, even so lately as up to fifty or sixty years ago, it has gradually fallen to pieces, and its ruins are now covered with vegetation.

The small Church of S. Cajetan was the first place we visited after passing the entrance to the palace. It was built by some Italian friars in 1640, and so closely adjoins the palace that some travellers have referred to it as the Viceregal Chapel. The façade, with its Corinthian columns, and the fine cupola rising behind them, reminds one of St. Peter's at Rome in miniature. Outside the church, exposed to the full heat of the burning sun, a party of half-clad natives were scrubbing with soap and water some fine full-length oil portraits of past viceroys, governors, and archbishops, which had been removed from the sacristy for this purpose. Among them were those of Vasco de Gama, and of Affonso Albuquerque, the first European conqueror of Goa. The church had not yet been opened, so we waited in a long room in the adjacent convent, through which the sea-breeze blew with delicious coolness. After a short rest we went out into a balcony and looked with delight over a forest of tropical vegetation, to the blue river running swiftly through the trees, with the paler grey of the distant ghâts beyond. When at last we gained admittance to the church, we much admired its graceful dome and the fine altar-piece in the principal chapel. Close to and in striking contrast with this grand painting stood a little group of scantily clothed natives, who had evidently taken advantage of the opportunity of inspecting the sacred edifice which our visit afforded. The windows of the church are made of small panes of the thin, semi-transparent inner scale of the pearl oyster, used in place of glass—a fashion still followed in many of the private houses of Goa. These shell windows, the materials for which must formerly have been very plentiful in the neighbourhood, admit a peculiarly soft and tender light.87

St. Xavier, Goa

St. Xavier, Goa

From S. Cajetan we proceeded to the Cathedral of S. Caterina, one of the oldest buildings of Goa, and the only church in which daily religious service on a grand scale is now held. Albuquerque was the founder of this sacred edifice, which took seventy-five years to build, and has been well described as 'worthy of one of the principal cities of Europe.' Dr. Russell, visiting it with H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, speaks of its 'vast and noble proportions.' We were amazed by the richness of the materials, and the artistic beauty of the elaborate carving which met the eye in every direction. The vaulted ceiling, the mosaic covered side-chapels, and the high altar, near which stands the Archbishop's chair, are the88 features most worthy of attention. The cathedral is, indeed, a stately pile, the nave being over 70 feet high and 140 feet long, and the total length of the building more than 270 feet. The vestries and sacristies are full of rich vestments and valuable plate, now seldom seen except by a few priests, or an occasional foreign visitor like ourselves, or, at still rarer intervals, by the general public when a grand exhibition is held, to which the faithful flock in crowds. Even the exhibitions have been discontinued of late years, for it was found that the gathering together of a large concourse of people in so unhealthy a locality led to the spread of infectious disorders. The site of Old Goa is, indeed, terribly malarious. The Government having abandoned the city, it was deserted by everybody else, the finest houses, after standing empty for years, gradually falling to pieces, so that literally not one stone remains above another. Old Goa was one of the headquarters of the terrible Inquisition, and until comparatively recent days its most cruel decrees were there executed with stern and heartless rigour. The tower of the Cathedral of S. Caterina contains five bells, the largest of which, still in daily use, is the same which was formerly tolled on the occasion of the auto-da-fé. It was quite thrilling to listen to its deep knell, and to think that those same tones must have fallen upon the agonised ears of the poor victims of an odious tyranny.

Inquisition Stake, Goa Inquisition Stake, Goa

Close to the cathedral once stood the Palace of the Inquisition, a vast and magnificent building, the space occupied by which is now filled with dense jungle. It is the home of venomous snakes, not to be met with in any other part of the island. Probably some special shrub or herb which they like grows there and nowhere else. From the cathedral we passed across an open space to visit the Church of Bom Jesus, containing the chapel and tomb of St. Francis Xavier, and a fine altar, in the centre of which stands a colossal image of St. Ignatius of Loyola. St. Francis (who died at Sanchan, in89 Malacca) rests in a crystal and silver coffin within a magnificent sarcophagus. The body, clad in the richest vestments, is said to be still, after the lapse of three centuries,90 in a wonderful state of preservation—a fact testified to by the chief surgeon of Goa in an official report made in 1859.

Never was there a city so unlike a city, or even the remains of one, as Old Goa, unless it were Palmyra. Goa is now, in fact, only a forest of palm-trees with patches of jungle here and there, made gay by tropical flowers, such as the scarlet coral-tree, the pimelia with its bright golden convolvulus-like flowers, and scarlet and apricot-yellow euphorbias. From this mass of vegetation the spire of a church rises or the tower of some ancient building occasionally peeps forth. No other traces of its bygone splendour could be seen, whether one looked upward from the level of the earth or downward from the roof of one of the few buildings which still remain.

On our return to the landing-place we found that the railway officials had kindly lent us their large steam-launch, in the cosy little cabin of which, sheltered by venetian blinds, we enjoyed our well-earned lunch, for it was now past three o'clock, and we had breakfasted soon after six. The sea-breeze blew refreshingly as we steamed down the river, and once clear of the land the heat was not at all oppressive.

Pangaum, or Nova Goa, is a nice clean-looking little town, of some 15,000 inhabitants, at the foot of a hill covered with palm-trees. It is of comparatively recent growth; for although the viceregal residence was transferred here from Old Goa in 1759, when a terrible epidemic broke out in that place, it was not until 1827 that any vigorous steps were taken to reclaim the land on which it now stands. In 1843 it was formally declared to be the capital of Portuguese India, and the Governor, the Archbishop, and other authorities and dignitaries now live there. The Causeway of Ribandar, which connects Pangaum with the city of that name, is a wonderful construction, nearly two miles in length, built in 1633 by order of the then Viceroy.91

Only the gentlemen landed during our brief stay; and they soon returned from their stroll, having seen most of the objects of interest in the place. I had in the meantime occupied myself in taking some photographs—under somewhat difficult conditions, for the breeze was stiff and strong, and the steam-launch was by no means steady. As soon as we returned on board the 'Sunbeam' we were met by an extortionate demand on the part of the Portuguese officials—which, I am glad to say, was successfully resisted—for the payment of eighty rupees, in return for the privilege of anchoring in the roads without the aid of a pilot. Then we had to bid adieu to kind Mr. Norman Oliver, regretting much that time would not admit of our seeing more of him and making the acquaintance of his wife. The anchor was soon weighed, and the 'Sunbeam' once more spread her wings to the favouring breeze, before which we sailed so quickly, and at such an angle, that the more sensitive members of the party began to fancy it was rough, and would not come down to dinner. Later in the evening it was delightful to sit on deck and watch, by the light of the young crescent moon and the brilliant stars, the vessel racing along through the cool evening air.

In the course of the next day we passed Carwar, about fifty miles south of Goa, and one of the most interesting ports in India. Adjoining it is a backwater, such as are often met with on the south-west coast of India, along which it is possible to sail for many miles in a native boat with great comfort and ease. Further south is Honahwar, whence the famous Falls of Gairsoppa, in Mysore, can easily be reached. Just now the waters of the river Kauri are rather low; else, I think, we should have made an effort to visit the falls (which have a drop of 1,000 feet in one place) notwithstanding the shortness of the time and the difficulties of the journey, which can only be performed in rough country carts.92

The wind was light all day; but the old 'Sunbeam' glided gracefully along, and made good progress through the hot air.

February 28th.—The sun becomes perceptibly more powerful each day. At noon we were off Mangalore, formerly a place of considerable importance, where the British forces have stood more than one siege. Like the rest of the ports on this coast, it has been deserted by trade, and has now fallen more or less into a state of decay and ruin.

We have now resumed our usual life-at-sea habits. In the morning we go on deck at a very early hour, to enjoy the exquisite freshness of the dawn of the tropical day. Tom and the Doctor help to man the pumps, sometimes assisted by the children, who appear to like the work of scrubbing decks as much as they did in the old days of our first long voyage round the world. Then we are most of us hosed. An open-air salt-water bath is a luxury not to be appreciated anywhere so thoroughly as in these tropical climates. After an early breakfast we settle down to our several occupations—the children to lessons, till it is time for sights to be taken and calculations made; Mr. Pritchett elaborates the sketches which he has made on shore during our recent wanderings; the Doctor makes himself generally useful, and has plenty of time to devote to this benevolent work, for at present he has hardly any patients. Later on he kindly gives the children a lesson in arithmetic, while Mr. des Graz, assisted by Prior, spends a considerable time in developing, printing, and toning the photographs which we have taken. I have always plenty to do in the way of writing, reading and general supervision. Often do I look wistfully at the many books which I long to read, and think regretfully of the letters and journal that ought to be written; but a good deal of time has to be spent in less interesting, and certainly more prosaic, work. In the afternoon there is more reading, writing, and lessons; and after tea there is a93 general taking off of coats by the gentlemen, a putting on of suitable costumes by the children, and a grand game of hide-and-seek and romps during the short twilights until the dressing-bell gives warning to prepare for dinner.

Landsmen can never know how delightful it is to be able to sit quietly on deck late in the evening, in the open air, without any tiresome wraps, and to enjoy the soft silvery light of the stars, scarcely dimmed by the brighter rays of the young moon. It is indeed a period of tranquil happiness. One is only agreeably fatigued by the exertions of the day; and one feels so soothed by the beauty and peacefulness of the scene as to be quite content to do absolutely nothing, and to rest satisfied with the mere pleasure of existence. Indeed it is only the recollection of the charms of early rising which induces any of us to leave the deck at last.

February 29th.—By noon to-day we had only run seventy-five miles. The air is still occasionally hot and oppressive. About 3 p.m. a large steamer was seen coming up astern, and with a glass we made her out, by the white band round her funnel, to be one of the British India Line. For some time we seemed to hold our own with her, even after the breeze fell light, almost to a calm; and it was 9 p.m. before she actually passed us, steaming ahead full speed. The 'Sunbeam' sails like a witch in her new suit of light canvas, and we pass the little native craft as if they were standing still, even in the lightest of breezes, for which they are specially built.

March 1st.—However it may mean to go out, March has come in like the quietest of lambs, and we could well do with a little more wind to help us on our course.

At noon we were off Calicut, a curious old town of nearly 50,000 inhabitants, to which belong many ancient stories and traditions. As we all know, it gives its name to that useful and familiar material—calico. This was the first point of India touched at by Vasco de Gama nearly 400 years ago,94 after his long voyage from Portugal. Not far from Calicut, near Mahé, a high rock rises—one of the few places in India where sea-swallows build their edible nests. Further south is Tellicherry, whence the highly appreciated cardamoms of Waima are exported. The plant (Amomum repens) which produces them is not unlike the ginger shrub in appearance, bearing small lilac-coloured flowers. Cardamoms are so indispensable in all Indian cookery that great pains are taken in their cultivation.

On the other side of the river lies Beypoor, one of the terminal stations of the Southern Indian Railway, whence it is possible to proceed by rail in almost any direction. Mysore, Bangalore, and Seringapatam can be easily reached from here; and last, though not by any means least, one can travel viâ Pothanore and Metapalliam to Ootacamund, that loveliest and healthiest of Southern hill stations in the Neilgherry Mountains, familiarly called 'Ooty.' This delightful place of refuge restores the enfeebled health of the European, and makes it possible for husband and wife, parents and children, to be spared the terrible separations incidental to a career in India; for the climate of Ootacamund is as cool and invigorating as that of England.

March 2nd.—The distance run at noon was 106 knots, the wind during the previous twenty-four hours having been stronger and more favourable.

We passed Cochin in the course of the day, but not near enough to see much of it. It must be an interesting old place, dating, like Calicut, from the ninth century, or even earlier, with inland waterways to Quilon and other ports on the Malabar coast, by delightfully smooth and sheltered backwaters, always navigable for the native boats, even in the full strength of the monsoon. Trivandaram, the capital of Travancore, is near this. The Rajah of Travancore on the occasion of the Great Exhibition of 1851 sent our Queen95 a most beautifully carved ivory chair, made in his own dominions, which her Majesty now uses whenever she holds a Chapter of the Order of the Garter at Windsor.

One of the bedroom stewards got a touch of sunstroke this morning, and suffered a good deal. I was, of course, very sorry for him, but could not help feeling rather annoyed, for it was entirely his own fault. The men are just like children, and will not or cannot understand the power of the sun and the danger of exposure to it. They will run up on deck bare-headed to look at some passing object, and then are surprised that they at once get a bad headache. They are all well provided with pith hats, and awnings are spread everywhere, so that one cannot feel quite as much sympathy for them as if they were sufferers in the cause of duty.

March 3rd.—An absolutely calm and uneventful day.

We are now getting towards Tuticorin, whence it is a short journey by rail to the splendid temples of Madura, or to Tinnevelly, the great missionary station of Southern India. Tanjore with its famous rock and its wonderful history, and Trichinopoly, with its temples and caves, are also easy of access.

We had hoped to have been able to pay a visit to the great temples on Rameshuwaran and Manaar, two of the islands forming what is known as Adam's Bridge, which partially connect Ceylon with the mainland; but, to our disappointment, we find that they are unapproachable from the westward, and we cannot get through the Pamban Passage, as its depth is but ten feet of water, whereas we draw thirteen. In order to reach the temples it would consequently be necessary for us to make the circuit of Ceylon, which would take far too much time. We shaped, therefore, as direct a course for Colombo as the light and variable breezes would admit of.

March 4th.—To-day was calmer and hotter than ever. At96 noon we had run eighty-eight knots, from which time until 8 p.m. we were in the midst of a flat oily calm, beneath a burning sun. We were, consequently, all much relieved when, in the course of the evening, fires were lighted, awnings spread, wind-sails set, and we began to make a little air for ourselves.

Sailors are amazingly like sheep in one respect; for if one does anything at all out of the ordinary course, it is ten to one that his shipmates feel bound to follow his example. Yesterday morning, for instance, after the cases of sunstroke of the day before, several of the crew reported themselves to the Doctor as sick, though, upon examination, he found that they were only suffering from the effects of a too-vivid imagination. Some medicine of a nauseous but otherwise innocent character was accordingly prescribed, with the satisfactory result that all the malades imaginaires are 'Quite well, thank you, sir,' this morning.


View in Ceylon

View in Ceylon



March 5th.—At 9.30 a.m. we dropped anchor in the harbour of Colombo, having come twelve miles under sail between noon and 11 p.m. yesterday, and ninety-eight since we began steaming.

Colombo seems to have grown and improved since we were here ten years ago. We were soon comfortably established in the new and splendid Oriental Hotel, and busy with letters and newspapers.

In the afternoon we did some necessary shopping beneath the welcome shade of the hotel arcades. Later, as soon as the air had become a little cooler, we drove along the sea-front, called Galle Face, and enjoyed the delicious sea-breeze.98 Everybody seemed to be out, driving, riding, or walking. In one spot officers and soldiers were playing cricket and football as energetically as if they had been on Woolwich Common.

We passed a horse-dealer's establishment, containing, beneath a long row of red shanties, a very decent-looking lot of ponies of various kinds, some of which were being trotted out for the inspection of a circle of possible purchasers. Every bungalow seemed to be provided with one or two tennis-grounds, and all had players on them. When at last, by a charming drive, we reached the formerly forsaken-looking Cinnamon Gardens, we found some lawn-tennis grounds established in their midst, as well as a fine museum surrounded by a well-kept garden. In fact, the appearance of the whole place has been completely changed since we last saw it.

On our way back we were overtaken by a funeral procession. First came two of the quaint little bullock-carts peculiar to Ceylon, drawn by the small oxen of the country, both carts being literally crammed full of people, apparently in the highest spirits. Then followed a long, low, open vehicle, rather like a greengrocer's van painted black. In the rear of the procession was another bullock-cart, fuller than ever of joyous mourners, and drawn by such a tiny animal that he seemed to be quite unable to keep up with his larger rivals, though urged to his utmost speed by the cries and shouts of the occupants of the cart. Altogether, anything more cheerful and less like one's ordinary conception of a funeral procession I never saw.

Our homeward road lay partly through jungle, the track crossing various small streams fringed with vegetation so tropical in character that each little river might have been a miniature Amazon. Presently we came to the Lotus Tank, full of handsome white double water-lilies on erect stems,99 with lotus-like centres, though they are not the real lotus flower. A hundred people sat down to dinner at the hotel, among whom were one or two old friends. When dinner was over we all adjourned on board the 'Sunbeam,' and later Tom took them back to their steamer, the 'Sirocco,' the largest vessel of the Messageries Maritimes fleet.

Buddhist Priest Buddhist Priest

March 6th.—We were called at 4.30 a.m., to enable us to start by the seven o'clock train for Kandy. After a great bustle, we found ourselves at the station, only to be told that the time of the departure of the train had been changed to 7.35. The beauty of the journey by rail up to Kandy in the cool air of the early morning quite compensated us for the inconvenience of so early a start. A comfortable saloon carriage, with luxurious armchairs, had been attached to the100 train for our use, besides a well-arranged refreshment car, in which civil waiters served an excellently prepared meal.

After leaving Colombo we passed through vast fields of paddy, some covered with the stubble of the recently cut rice, while others were being prepared for a new crop by such profuse irrigation that the buffaloes seemed to be ploughing knee-deep through the thick, oozy soil. It was easy to understand how unhealthy must be the task of cultivating a rice-field, and what swampy and pestiferous odours must arise from the brilliant vegetation. 'Green as grass' is a feeble expression to those familiar with the dazzling verdure of a paddy-field. Grain cultivation in Ceylon does not, however, appear to be a very profitable occupation, and seems to be pursued by the natives for sentimental rather than for practical reasons. Sir C.P. Layard, who was for many years Governor of the Western Province, has stated that 'the cultivation of paddy is the least profitable pursuit to which a native can apply himself. It is persevered in from habit, and because the value of time and labour never enters into his calculation. Besides this, agriculture is, in the opinion of a Cingalese, the most honourable of callings.' All the grain grown in Ceylon is consumed in the island, and the supply has to be largely supplemented by imports from India and elsewhere.

After our train had ascended, almost imperceptibly, to a considerable height, we came to the Valley of Death, so called because of the enormous mortality among the workmen employed upon this portion of the railway. Thence we passed through scenes of wondrous beauty to Rambukkana, where the train really begins to climb, and has to be drawn and pushed by two engines—one in front and one behind. It would be wearisome even to name the various types of tropical vegetation which we passed; but we thought ourselves fortunate in seeing a talipot palm in full bloom, with its magnificent spike of yellowish flowers rising some twenty feet above101 a noble crown of dark green fan-shaped leaves. This sight is uncommon, for the trees never bloom till they are seventy or eighty years old, and then die directly.

Talipot Palm Talipot Palm

Just before arriving at Peradeniya, the new line branches off to Nanu-oya, 128 miles from Colombo, and 5,300 feet above the sea-level. Nuwarra-Ellia is reached in about four hours from this, the line passing through some of the richest and best of the tea- and quinine-growing estates—formerly covered with coffee plantations. The horrid coffee-leaf fungus, Hemileia vastatrix—the local equivalent of the phylloxera, or of the Colorado beetle—has ruined half the planters in Ceylon, although there seems to be a fair prospect of a good crop this year, not only of coffee but of everything else.

There are over six hundred thousand acres of ground under rice cultivation in Ceylon, as compared with 130,000 acres of coffee, 175,000 acres of tea, 650,000 acres of palms, and 35,000 acres of cinchona. Cinnamon and other spices, besides tobacco, cacao, and other trees and plants, are also more or less extensively grown. Sugar-cultivation has proved a failure, probably owing to the too great dampness of the climate.

The Satinwood Bridge at Peradeniya, across the Mahaweliganga, seemed quite a familiar friend; though the old English102man who for so many years washed the sand of the river in search of gems is dead and gone.

In the afternoon I went to keep my appointment with Dr. Trimen, the present curator of the gardens, and successor to our friend Dr. Thwaites. The group of india-rubber trees outside the gate, and the palms just within the enclosure, were old acquaintances, and looked as graceful as ever. Close by stood a magnificent Amherstia nobilis in full bloom, its great tresses of vermilion flowers spotted with yellow, hanging in gorgeous profusion among its bright glossy leaves. In Burmah these flowers are laid upon the altars in front of the images of Buddha as a sacred offering. Dr. Trimen appears to feel the greatest pride in the management of the garden, and he took much trouble to show us all there was time to see. The principal trees, shrubs, and plants have been labelled, so that he who runs may read. A good deal of vegetation has also been cut down and cleared away, and the more valuable specimens of trees stand boldly out on the grassy lawns. The present curator has erected a charming little summer-house, in the form of a Kandyan temple, in memory of Dr. Thwaites and his thirty successful years of office. It stands on a small knoll, surrounded by the fragrant bushes of the jessamine-like Plumieria, which is also known as the temple-flower, and is regarded as sacred.

We scarcely got back in time to dress for dinner at the Pavilion, as they call the Governor's residence here. The children were tired, and went to bed. Tom, Mabelle, Mr. des Graz, and I therefore started without them, and arrived punctually at eight o'clock. Lord and Lady Aberdeen were of the party, which included a good many interesting people. The table was decorated with lovely ferns, and no less than seventy-two vases of sunflowers! The effect of the servants' liveries was quaint and decidedly picturesque, and I believe the fashion in which they are made is very old. The smartly cut, long103 swallow-tail black coat, profusely braided with red and yellow, is worn over a snowy white cloth wrapped round the waist and reaching to the feet, and the smooth hair is kept in its place by a large circular comb at the top of the head. Out of doors, a gracefully carried umbrella is the sole protection from the sun.

Seychelles Palm

Seychelles Palm


March 7th.—The morning broke misty, foggy, and decidedly cold for our early start back to Colombo. We found this change rather trying after the heat through which we have been voyaging. We left at eight, relying upon breakfast in the train; but in this hope we were disappointed, and had to content ourselves with biscuits and some rather unripe fruit; for the breakfast-car is only attached to upward trains, to suit travellers from Colombo who want to make the trip to Nuwarra-Ellia or to Kandy and back in one day. The scenery was so lovely, however, that there was plenty to occupy and distract our minds, and we were able to do all the more justice to our good lunch when we reached the comfortable Galle Face Hotel.

Governor's Peon, Kandy Governor’s Peon, Kandy

There was a great deal of business still to be done at Colombo, including the engagement of a new under-cook, the purchase of additional cool clothing for the crew, and the laying in of fresh stores and provisions. It was therefore not until the evening that we were able to start upon a little expedition, I in a jinrikisha, Tom on foot, followed by another jinrikisha, into which, to the great amusement of the group of lookers-on, he insisted on putting our interpreter, or 'English-speak-man,' as he calls himself.

There is always, to my mind, something supremely ludicrous in the sight of a half-naked individual trudging gaily along under an umbrella in pouring rain. His clothes cannot be spoiled, for he wears none; and one105 would think that his body must long ago have been acclimatised to every degree of moisture. The natives of Ceylon get over the difficulty very well by gathering one of the many beautifully spotted large caladium leaves which abound in the roadside ditches. For a time it serves its purpose, combining utility with elegance, and when the shower is over it is thrown away. I have also seen these leaves used as sunshades, but they do not answer so well in this capacity, for they wither directly and become limp and drooping. We had a pleasant stroll through the town and outskirts, exploring some lovely little nooks and corners full of tropical foliage. Colombo seems to be progressing, and to have benefited greatly by the railway.

Cingalese Weapons Cingalese Weapons

We went to the station to meet the train from Nuwarra-Ellia, by which the children were expected to arrive, but, as the time-tables have just been altered, we found ourselves too early. The interval was pleasantly filled, however, by an instructive and interesting little chat with the traffic-manager. At last the train appeared, and with it the children, who expressed great delight at the procession of six real Japanese jinrikishas which we had organised to convey them and the rest of the party from the station to the hotel.106

During the day we had heard that several old friends happened to be at Colombo, so we convened them all to dinner. Their number included Mr. Macbean and Captain Middleton, of the old 93rd, both of whom had been married since we last met them, and Colonel Carey, a Rugby friend of Tom's, now commanding the Engineers here.

We have had great difficulty to-day in obtaining possession of a box sent on to us from Bombay. I left orders yesterday that it was to be obtained from the shipping-agents this morning, but it was only after an infinity of trouble to ourselves and to the people on shore, who had locked up their offices and gone home, that we were able to get hold of it this evening. At last everything and everybody were collected on board; our usual parting gifts of books and newspapers to barracks, hospitals, and schools were sent ashore, and we steamed slowly out of the harbour and round the breakwater. Then 'Full speed ahead' was the order given, and once more we left the lights and luxuries of land behind us and sailed forth into the soft tropic twilight.

Point de Galle

Point de Galle

Tuesday, March 8th.—It was 1.10 a.m. as we passed the107 lighthouse. I stayed on deck until the land seemed to be swallowed up in the darkness; but when I came up again at 6 a.m. we were still running along the coast, near enough to see some of its beauties, though not so close as to make it possible to appreciate the exquisite loveliness of the Bay of Galle. Once the principal port of call for all the most important lines of steamers, the town of Galle is now comparatively deserted, and the charms of the neighbouring country are unknown to the modern traveller. The difficulties of landing there were always great during the monsoon period, and more facilities having been afforded at Colombo by the construction of Sir John Coode's great breakwater, all the steamers now make use of that port to take in water, coal, and provisions.

At noon we had run 95 miles, and Trincomalee was 244 miles distant. At 10 p.m. we passed inside the Great Bass Rock, and afterwards the smaller Bass Rock.

Wednesday, March 9th.—At noon to-day 184 miles had been made, and Trincomalee is only now twenty miles ahead. We had passed Batticaloa, the capital of one of the divisions of the island, and early in the morning saw the celebrated rock called 'Westminster Abbey,' which is curiously like that grand old pile, especially when the two pinnacles are seen from a distance. As you pass it to the northward the resemblance gradually becomes lost.

The sun was sinking fast when we shaped our course for the entrance to the harbour of Trincomalee. I was on the topgallant forecastle with Tom, and most delightful it was in that airy position. A fisherman in a curious little catamaran boat offered his services as pilot; and though they were not required we stopped, intending to ask him to come on board and have a chat; but he was lazy with the oars, and before he had come alongside our patience was exhausted. The moon now began to show her light, while the stars twinkled overhead; and the two lighthouses—one on either hand—sent108 forth rays which glistened on the calm surface of the water. I half regretted the departure of the daylight, for I should have liked to have seen more plainly the entrance to this wonderful harbour, pronounced by Nelson to be one of the finest in the world; but, on the other hand, the exquisite beauty of the scene made up for its want of distinctness. The glorious full moon, gaining power, shone into every creek and cranny, and beamed brilliantly over the water as we steamed ahead, until at last we dropped anchor off the dockyard of Trincomalee. Just previously, from the little fort above, had come loud shouts of 'Sunbeam, ahoy!' and then many hearty cheers burst from the throats of the artillerymen and engineers who are quartered there.

Trincomalee Harbour

Trincomalee Harbour

After dinner Tom and I went for a row in the 'Flash,'109 and explored the harbour by moonlight. There was a good deal of singing at a row of cottages ashore, where, I suppose, the dockyard labourers live. Even the workshops looked quite romantic, covered as their rough walls were by palms, creepers, and other tropical vegetation. We went on towards the Admiral's house, passing through the submarine mining flotilla, which looked singularly out of place among these picturesque surroundings. The night was absolutely perfect; the moonlight on the water, the distant mountains, the near forts, and the white sandy beach, all making up an ideal picture of tropical beauty and repose.

Shortly after we had come to an anchor, Mr. Black, the assistant naval storekeeper, arrived on board, bringing with him kind letters from Sir Frederick Richards, the commander-in-chief of the East India station, offering us his house and garden whilst we remain here. The 'Jumna,' which brought these letters, left four days ago; and the 'Bacchante,' Sir Frederick's flagship, is not expected for a week; so that we have just missed both, greatly to our disappointment. Mr. Black kindly promises to meet us again to-morrow, and to pilot us to the famous hot springs at Kanniya and to the alligator tank.

March 10th.—At 6 a.m. we all went on shore, and were met by Mr. Black with sundry little gharries and tum-tums, into which we soon packed—all except Tom, who remained behind to inspect the dockyard. The harbour looked finer in some ways, though perhaps not so poetic as by moonlight. We could see more of the landscape; and as we drove along a good road skirting the bay the peeps through the foliage were lovely. After passing the Admiral's house we drove, through a straggling village embosomed in trees, to the post-office, where we deposited a mail which, to judge from the astonished looks of the officials, must have been much larger than they usually receive. It certainly was110 somewhat voluminous, consisting as it did of letters, books, manuscripts, legal documents, and newspapers. It would have to be carried some eighty miles by runners to reach the mail-coach, and then travel another hundred miles before being deposited in the train; so that I fear it will give some trouble. The poor letter-carriers are bound to take any parcel weighing eleven pounds. I suppose an extra man will have to be employed for our mail, but this cannot be a serious matter where wages are so cheap.

Jumping Fish

Jumping Fish (Periophthalmus Kolreuteri)

From the post-office our way lay through a dense jungle, but still along a good road, where many birds of brilliant plumage and sweet song flew gaily before us or perched on the telegraph wires alongside. Jungle-cock ran in and out across the road. They are rather good-looking birds, something like a very 'gamey' domestic fowl, with a fine upstanding tail.

Our progress was greatly delayed by the eccentricities111 of Mr. Black's pony. He always stood still when we met anything, stopping so abruptly as almost to shoot us out of the gharry. Then, having once halted, he refused to move on again without much urging and coaxing. Before going down hill he planted his feet obstinately on the ground, declining to proceed; and at the bottom of an ascent he turned short round. If a bird flew suddenly out of the jungle he jumped over into the opposite ditch, and many times nearly, though never quite, upset us. After these performances, I was not surprised to hear that this pony had never been in harness before.

At last we reached the hot springs, seven in number, where we found a temple and other little buildings close by. The water bubbles up through square and round holes, and was so hot (115°) that it was almost impossible to bear one's hand in it; but we caught two little turtles swimming gaily about. The curious 'sea-horses,' which carry their young in their mouths, are said to live in the streams running from the springs.

While waiting for the rest of the party to arrive I took several photographs. We sent a native up a tree for fresh cocoa-nuts, and, having climbed in the orthodox manner, with feet tied together, he threw us down nuts, green and smooth, full of deliciously cool clear milk, with a thick creamy coating inside, most grateful to the palate.

After taking more photographs, some of the party set out for the alligator tank, where the probability of seeing any alligators seemed so doubtful, that, as a long and fatiguing walk was much more certain, I thought it better to undertake, instead of accompanying them, to drive a pair of jibbing ponies back to Trincomalee.

On the way back we saw an opening made in the dense jungle by the passage of an elephant, which had evidently crushed through into the road since we had passed. Wild elephants112 are very numerous hereabouts, and a hundred were killed not long since by one sportsman in a comparatively short time. Another hunter made great preparations for sport, and spent a considerable time in the neighbourhood waiting his opportunity, but, after failing to get a single shot, determined to return by bullock-cart and coach to Kandy. At one of the rest-houses he was cleaning and putting away his rifle, when some excited coolies rushed in and begged him to kill a rogue-elephant which they had caught sight of quietly walking down the road. The sportsman accordingly took up his position behind a tree, and killed the huge beast quite easily. The carcase remained in the road for several weeks, poisoning the atmosphere and rendering the rest-house almost uninhabitable, until at last an official of rank, passing that way, gave orders for it to be burnt, which was promptly done by the inhabitants of the neighbourhood, who had nearly arrived at the conclusion that the possible attacks of a live elephant were a less serious matter than the certain ill-effects of the proximity of a dead animal. To me, independently of the sanitary aspect of the case, it appears a sad pity and an altogether wasteful proceeding to massacre so powerful a beast, with such capabilities of usefulness, as an elephant, simply for the sake of amusement; for neither hide, feet, tail, nor bones are of much, if of any, value, and it would surely be better to catch and tame the poor creatures if possible.

Arrived on board the yacht, I found Tom just returned from a long examination of the dockyard and naval establishment. The remainder of the party appeared later on, all rather exhausted, and disappointed at not having seen any alligators. They were, however, laden with lovely lotus-like water-lilies, collected during a pleasant little paddle on the tank in a very leaky canoe.

During the morning we had many visitors on board, all113 profuse in kind offers of hospitality, and desirous of doing everything to make our brief stay agreeable. The children went back with the ladies to spend the afternoon at the fort, while Tom and Mabelle landed to play lawn-tennis.

About five o'clock Major Nash called and took us for a drive on the heights, from which there was a fine view across the bay and harbour beneath us. This island originally belonged to the Dutch, by whom it was ceded to us; and it has since been used as a club and recreation-ground for the officers. Several pleasant bungalows have been established, and a good breakfast, lunch, or even dinner, can be obtained at a moment's notice. The old account-books kept by those in charge of the mess bungalow are still preserved, and many a now celebrated name may be seen entered therein.

We went to Mr. Millett's house to see what he called a tame cheetah, but which was really a wild panther—a handsome little beast, who became greatly excited when the dogs appeared on the scene. We also saw a tiny crocodile, only a month old, in an earthenware pan, which snapped and hissed and flapped his tail, and was altogether as angry as any creature of his diminutive size could well be, making it quite clear that only the power—not the will—to eat us all up was wanting. There are many crocodiles in these lakes and streams, and they occasionally carry incautious people off, especially the women who go to the tanks to fill their water-jars.

Mr. Millett had also quite a large collection of elephants' heads, tails, and feet—the spoils of a recent shooting expedition. These trophies seemed to give one a better idea of the immense size of the elephant than the sight of the animal itself. It was most interesting to be able to handle and to examine closely their great bones, though I felt sad to see the remains of so many huge beasts sacrificed just for the love of killing something. They had not even been tuskers, so that, unless their heads and feet were used for mere decorations, I114 do not see that their slaughter could have answered any useful end.

Sami Rock

Sami Rock

We next drove to the Admiral's house—a charmingly-placed dwelling, with one end for each monsoon (south-west from April to September, north-east from November to February). A well-cared-for garden encircles it, full of valuable plants and flowers; and the view over the bay is wide and lovely. We went through the barracks, and then walked, or rather climbed, up to the signal station, below which a new fort is being made which will carry heavy guns. Close by is a curious old Dutch graveyard, with a few quaint English monuments in it, dating from the beginning of the century. The way was long and the road rough; but still we climbed on and on to reach the famous Sami Rock, which rises sheer from the sea, and is a sacred spot for Hindoos, who have come here by thousands to worship for many centuries. Behind the rock stands a small monument, erected in memory of a young Portuguese lady, who, having seen her lover's ship115 leave the harbour and disappear below the horizon, threw herself in despair from the cliff.

The sun had now set, and the night was calm and brilliant; but so powerful had been the sun's rays that the rocks burnt our feet as we walked, and made it impossible to sit down. We returned to lower levels much more quickly than we had ascended; but I felt very tired before we got back to the gharries, and was only too glad to 'rest and be thankful' until the others arrived and were ready to start. They had had a delightful afternoon, and had caught several walking-fish (a kind of perch), after seeing them both walk and swim; besides gathering more lotus-flowers, and enjoying several good games at lawn-tennis.

The drive to the boats, behind Major Nash's fast-trotting pony, was all too short, and the time for the inevitable farewells came but too quickly. Steam was up when we got on board, and in a few minutes we were leaving this beautiful harbour behind us, exactly twenty-four hours after we had entered it, and under almost precisely the same conditions of wind and weather. Trincomalee is certainly a noble harbour, but Tom is strongly of opinion that it would be more valuable in the hands of the Indian Government than under the Admiralty.

Friday, March 11th.—We had intended to go south of the Andaman Islands, so as to be able to call at Port Blair, the convict station where poor Lord Mayo was assassinated by the convict Shere Ali during his official visit in 1872. The sailing-directions, however, gave such a terrible account of the malarious climate of the whole group of islands, the savage character of the inhabitants, and the size and number of the many venomous reptiles, that we reluctantly decided to continue our voyage straight to Burmah without stopping. We accordingly passed to the northward of the Andaman group, making what is called 'The Cocos' our first landfall.116

At noon we had steamed 140 miles, and were in lat. 9° 44´ N. and long. 83° 3´ E., Great Coco being 607 miles distant.

Saturday, March 12th.—Another calm day, busily occupied in reading and writing. At noon we had steamed 184 miles, and were 471 miles distant from Great Coco, in lat. 10° 49´ N. and long. 87° 1´ E.

Sunday, March 13th.—We had the Litany at 11.30, and evening service later, with most successful Chants, the result of much practising yesterday and on Friday. At noon we had steamed 195 miles, and were in lat. 12° 16´ N. and long. 88° 55´ E. Great Coco distant 278 miles.

Coco Island Light

Coco Island Light

Monday, March 14th.—There was a nice breeze in the early morning, and sails were accordingly set. At 9 a.m. we ceased steaming, and proceeded under sail alone. At noon we had run 181 miles, and were distant 97 miles from Great Coco.

Tuesday, March 15th.—Little Coco was sighted at daylight. Later on we saw all the other islands of the Preparis group in succession, and were able to congratulate ourselves on having made a good landfall. At noon we had sailed 120 miles,117 and were in lat. 14° 5´ N. and long. 93° 29´ E., the Krisha Shoal being distant 150 miles.

In the evening we had our first nautical entertainment since we have all been on board together. It proved a real success, and appeared to afford great enjoyment to all, the credit being mostly due to Mabelle and the Doctor, who took an immense deal of trouble to make everything go off properly, and were well rewarded by the universal appreciation of their exertions. I am sure that these amusements do good in relieving the unavoidable tedium and monotony of a long voyage.

Wednesday, March 16th.—Soundings were taken at frequent intervals throughout the morning, for we were uncertain as to the strength of the currents, and could not see far ahead, as the sky was both overcast and misty. About noon Tom got an observation, and found that we were in lat. 15° 28´ N. and long. 95° 40´ E., having sailed 140 miles during the past twenty-four hours. The Krisha Shoal was then about ten miles to the N.W.

Towards five o'clock I was reading quietly on deck, when I was startled by an appalling shriek, followed by a good deal of commotion forward. A moment afterwards I saw poor Pitt bleeding profusely from his right hand. Having sent for the Doctor and some ice, I got hold of the wrist, and bound it up as best I could until the Doctor appeared, who then proceeded with his instruments to tie the arteries properly and to sew up the wounds. While opening some soda-water for the children one of the bottles burst in the poor man's hand, cutting five arteries and nearly blowing off the top of his second finger. It was a ghastly business altogether, and although he bore it bravely he could not help crying out occasionally. I stood it all pretty well till just at the end, and then fainted, which was stupid; but sitting in the sun in a cramped position, with such sights and sounds118 was rather trying. It was a comfort to know that I was able to be of some use at first.

At 7.45 p.m. we made Point Baragu Light, and at 10 p.m. sail was shortened, for by this time we were rushing along before a strong, fair wind, and did not quite know how far it might carry us by daylight. After dark the sea was brilliantly lit up by millions of minute nautilidæ, and from time to time we passed through shoals of large medusæ, increasing and decreasing the light which they emitted as they opened or closed their feelers, to propel themselves through the water. They looked like myriads of incandescent lamps floating just below the surface of the water and illuminating everything as they passed with I do not know how many thousand or million candle-power. The effect was indeed fairy-like, and one felt reluctant to go below so long as there was even the faintest chance of seeing another blazing shoal.

Fortunately, the description of the China Bakeer pilot-brig given in the sailing-directions is very precise and clear, or a wretched little native boat, on the look-out for a job, might have imposed herself upon us as the genuine craft, and have got us into serious trouble. The shoals hereabouts are numerous and the water generally is shallow. This native craft was rigged very much like an ordinary pilot-boat, and flew a huge ensign at the main until dark, besides burning enough blue lights, flash-lights, and flare-lights afterwards to draw any ship from her safe course. It would therefore not have been surprising if we had allowed ourselves to be misled by her. We heard afterwards that only a few days ago she nearly led H.M.S. 'Jumna' on to a dangerous shoal.


Entrance to Caves at Moulmein

Entrance to Caves at Moulmein



Thursday, March 17th.—The government pilot came on board at 6 a.m., and we at once got up the anchor and proceeded under steam up the branch of the Irrawaddy called the Rangoon River, leading to the town of that name. Its banks are flat, low, and densely wooded. The Great Pagoda is seen shortly after entering the mouth, and at Monkey Point the river divides into two portions (one of which is120 only a creek, while the other is the main branch, which passes Rangoon). Later on the factories, wharves, offices, public buildings and houses of the city become visible in quick succession.

Little more than thirty years ago Rangoon consisted of a mere swamp, with a few mat huts mounted on wooden piles, and surrounded by a log stockade and fosse. Now it is a city of 200,000 inhabitants, the terminus of a railway, and almost rivals Bombay in beauty and extent. It possesses fine palaces, public offices, and pagodas; warehouses, schools, hospitals, lovely gardens and lakes, excellent roads, and shady promenades.

Merchant Dhows, Indian Ocean

Merchant Dhows, Indian Ocean

We arrived opposite the town about half-past ten, passing through quite a crowd of shipping, amongst which were several fine clippers and steamers, bound to all parts of the world. The rice season is now at its height, and everybody is working his hardest. So great is the competition, that some merchants complain that they have made no profit since the time121 of the great Indian famines of 1874 and 1877, the only successful traders now being the owners of mills, who derive their gains from merely crushing rice.

Early in the afternoon, Mr. Symes, Secretary to the Chief Commissioner, came on board, bringing a kind note from Mrs. Crossthwaite, the wife of the Chief Commissioner (who is away in Mandalay), asking us all to go and stay at Government House during our visit to Rangoon. We declined this proffered kindness, but accepted an invitation to dinner. Several other visitors came on board in the course of the afternoon, and at five o'clock we landed and went for a drive.

Important as are the commercial aspects of the place, it is not these which interest and arrest the attention of the stranger, but rather what is old, quaint, and perhaps more or less effete. The appearance of the people themselves, to begin with, is most picturesque. Nearly all the men are naked to the waist, or wear a small white open linen jacket, with a voluminous putso wound tightly round their loins and gathered into a great bundle or knot in front. Their long hair is beautifully trimmed, plaited, and oiled, and their glossy locks are protected from the sun by an oiled-silk umbrella. The women wear much the same costume, except that the tamieri which replaces the putso is gayer in colour and more gracefully put on. There seems to be a strong family likeness between our own Scotch kilts, the Malay sarongs, the Burmese putsos and tamieris, and the Punjaubee tunghis. They are evidently the outcome of the first effort of a savage people to clothe themselves, and consist merely of oblong or square unmade pieces of cloth wound round the body in a slightly differing fashion. Some people profess to be able to recognise the Bruce and Stewart plaids in the patterns of the sarongs. Stripes and squares are comparatively cheap, while anything with a curved or vandyked pattern is expensive, because for each curved or vandyked line a special instrument,122 called a loon, must be used. Hence the probable derivation of langoti, by which name the same garment is called in India. The rain-hats are also remarkable, being sufficiently large to enable the wearer to dispense with an umbrella, though an oiled-paper parasol is generally carried in case of a shower.

Great Pagoda Court Great Pagoda Court

But it was not only the people who interested me. There were the great pagodas, like huge hand-bells, gilded and decorated in various styles, with curious little htees, or gilt crowns, at the top, ornamented with rubies and emeralds. On the extreme summit, in the place of honour, is almost invariably123 fixed an English soda-water bottle, while the minor positions of importance are occupied by tonic-water bottles, which are of the same shape, but of a blue colour. The still more inferior places are crowned by dark green square-shouldered seltzer-water bottles. It seems a curious idea that a crown, which is not only a real work of art, but is made of rich materials, and worth 30,000l. sterling, after having been placed with124 much pomp and ceremony on the top of the finest pagoda in Burmah (Shway Dagohu, the gilded spire of which rises as high as St. Paul's Cathedral), should be surmounted and surrounded by the most commonplace articles of the conquering 'barbarian hordes.'

Entrance to Temple

Entrance to Temple

Presently we passed the funeral car of a Phoongyee, or Buddhist priest—a marvellous structure, reminding one of the Juggernaut cars of India. The funeral of a Phoongyee is always made the occasion of a great function. The body is embalmed and placed on one of these huge cars; and the people from the surrounding villages flock to the ceremony, bringing cartloads of fireworks, for the manufacture of which the Burmese are celebrated. Great rivalry arises as to which village shall be fortunate enough, through its representative, to set the gorgeous canopy on fire, and thereby release the good man's departed spirit and send it straight to heaven without any further transmigration or trouble. This happy consummation is supposed to occur directly the large funeral pile, which is always of highly inflammable materials, takes fire. The result is that many accidents occur, besides a great deal of heart-burning and loss of life; for sometimes at whole quarter of the town is set on fire and much property destroyed in these contests.

It is the custom, when a Phoongyee of the highest rank dies, to preserve the body in honey until the funeral car has been built, which is generally a matter of some weeks. The body of the car is surmounted by a sort of baldacchino, decorated with blue and green bottles and pieces of broken glass or porcelain. When all is ready, the body, attired in a common yellow robe (during life the robes are of silk, satin, or velvet, or cotton, according to the priest's rank), is placed on the car; women then seize the ropes attached to the front of the cumbrous vehicle, and men those behind. After a prolonged struggle, supposed to typify the conflict between125 good and evil spirits, the women gain the day, and the car proceeds on its way to the funeral pile, upon which the body is placed, and which is finally set on fire by huge rockets.



The avenue leading to the Shway Dagohu Pagoda is guarded at the entrance by two enormous statues of bylus, or monsters, erected to propitiate the evil spirits; bylus and nats being to the Burmese very much what demons and devils are to us. The view of the pagoda from the avenue is indeed126 wonderful. The great gilt dome, with its brilliant golden htee, grows and grows and increases upon the vision, until its enormous bulk is at last fully realised. Fancy a vast bell-shaped erection, with a pointed handle of solid gold, rising to nearly the height of the cross on the top of St. Paul's, surrounded by numerous smaller pagodas and dagolas, bell-temples, tombs, and rest-houses, some much dilapidated—it being considered more meritorious to build a new temple than to repair an old one. Shway Dagohu itself stands on a planted terrace, raised upon a rocky platform, and approached by a hundred steps. A writer of about forty years ago says:

'The golden temple of the idol may challenge competition, in point of beauty, with any other of its class in India. It is composed of teak-wood on a solid brick foundation, and indefatigable pains are displayed in the profusion of rich carved work which adorns it. The whole is one mass of the127 richest gilding, with the exception of the three roofs, which have a silvery appearance. A plank of a deep red colour separates the gold and silver, with the happy effect of relieving them.

'All round the principal pagoda are smaller temples, richly gilt and furnished with images of Gautama, whose unmeaning smile meets you in every direction, the sight of which, accompanied by the constant tinkling of the innumerable bells hung on the top of each pagoda, combines with the stillness and deserted appearance of the place to produce an impression on the mind not speedily to be effaced.' Close by live a hundred and fifty families, called 'slaves of the pagoda,' to whose care the edifice is entrusted.

Rangoon Boat (stern)

Rangoon Boat, Stern

Rangoon Boat (stem)

Rangoon Boat, Stem

On the walls of one of the rest-houses were some well-drawn frescoes illustrating incidents in the life of Gautama, and statues of all dimensions, from the size of one's hand to something quite colossal. These figures are always represented in one of three positions—either standing, sitting, or lying—the features of each wearing exactly the same amiable but vacant expression, and the hands and feet being invariably turned in the same direction. The carvings over the porch of the principal temple outside the strongly fortified pagoda128 represent its storming and capture by the English, under General Godwin, in 1852. The naval officers who are depicted carry telescopes of somewhat inconvenient length for practical purposes; but the uniforms of the bluejackets, soldiers, and marines are fairly correct, and all the figures are carved with great spirit.

The pagoda is supposed to have been commenced 588 years b.c., in order to enshrine some hairs of Buddha and the bathing-gown of another holy man who lived two thousand years before him. The building was enlarged from time to time (especially when eight hairs from Gautama's beard were added to the sacred collection), and is now a solid mass of bricks, arranged in rows of steps, with three shrines to hold the precious relics, erected at various heights. The carved teak with which it is covered is solidly gilt from top to bottom, and this process costs 30,000l. each time it is repeated. The new htee was sent down from Mandalay in 1882, and was received with the greatest pomp and ceremony by all the officials, both European and Burmese.

To wander round the top platform or courtyard outside the pagoda in the twilight and listen to the bells was an extraordinary experience for all of us. The big Burmese bells are celebrated for their tone, especially those in the temples. The smaller bells are also good, as are the triangular gongs, called, from their shape, stirrup-gongs. The little bells which are hung on the htees at the tops of the various pinnacles surrounding the soda-water bottles have long clappers, easily moved by the wind; and the sound of these various bells and gongs borne on the evening breeze is harmonious in the extreme.

The King of Siam has constructed a fine rest-house just outside the gates, for the use of the people of his nation, the pagoda itself being open to all peoples, kingdoms, and races. A private individual also built a magnificent wooden129 rest-house, at the cost of a lac of rupees, just before Lord Ripon visited Rangoon. This virtuous act was supposed to assure him on his death immediate nirvana, or transition to Paradise without undergoing the process of transmigration or the ordeal of Purgatory. As a mark of loyalty and admiration, the founder transferred not only the rest-house, but all the eternal privileges which he had gained by building it, to His Excellency, in recognition of his endeavours to gain for the natives of India a larger amount of liberty and greater privileges.



Mr. Hodgkinson, the assistant Commissioner, met us at the pagoda, and told us all he knew about it in the most interesting way. The drive back to Rangoon through the Dalhousie Park and Gardens, once the appanage of a royal palace, was perfectly delightful. It was rather late, and there was consequently a great rush to dress on board and get back to shore in time to dine with Mrs. Crossthwaite at Government House, three miles from the landing-place. It is a large roomy bungalow with a big verandah, surrounded by trees.130 Mrs. Crossthwaite, her daughter, Mr. Hodgkinson, Mr. Symes, Tom, Mabelle, Mr. des Graz, and myself formed the party. We had a very pleasant evening, but our long and tiring day made at least one of the guests glad to get on board and go to bed.

Elephants at Work Elephants at Work

Friday, March 18th.—Left the yacht about seven o'clock. Mr. Hodgkinson took us to see a timber-yard, where elephants are extensively used. It was a wonderful exhibition of strength, patience, and dexterity. The docile creatures lift, roll, and push the logs of timber to any part of the yard. They pile it up into stacks high above their heads, seizing one end of a log with their trunk, placing it on the pile of timber, and then taking the other end of the log and pushing it forward, finally placing it on their heads, and sending it into its place. They work undisturbed amid the buzz of circular saws and machinery, where it would seem almost impossible for animals of such huge proportions to escape injury. They carry their intelligence to the point of rigidly enforcing the rights of labour.131 Nothing will persuade an elephant to do a stroke of work, after he has heard the workmen's dinner-bell, during the hour of midday rest to which he rightly considers himself entitled. Their mental powers seem, indeed, to be very nearly on a level with those of the human workmen, with whose efforts their own are combined. No less than two thousand elephants were formerly employed in the yard of the Bombay and Burmah Company. Steam machinery is now rapidly superseding elephants, for each animal requires at least three men to look after him.

Elephants at Work Elephants at Work

We quitted the Bombay and Burmah Trading Company's teak-yard, most grateful to Mr. Jones, the manager, for his kind reception. Then our party divided, some going to see the pagoda, and others to see the rice-mills. At this season of the year the mill-hands are at work night and day, while from November to February the mills are as a rule closed. In the establishment which we visited a hundred tons of rice are turned out every twelve hours, several processes having to be gone through before the 'paddy' is converted into 'white rice' of the first quality.132

While rice is the main element in the trade of Rangoon, teak is the principal article at Moulmein. The finest teak forests are to be found in Northern Burmah. The tree does not flourish south of the 16th degree of latitude.

Moulmein River Boat

Moulmein River Boat

Returned on board to breakfast, to which Dr. and Mrs. Pedley came. Busy morning with letters and callers. Among the latter were Lord and Lady Stafford, on their way to join the 'Kilwa,' in which they proceed to Moulmein and Singapore. Captain Fanshawe also called, and Mr. Symes and Mr. Hodgkinson came to lunch. Some Burmese curiosity-vendors paid us a visit in the afternoon, and we made some purchases, chiefly of silver and gongs. Posted our budget of letters and sent off telegrams in the evening, and sailed from Rangoon at 11 p.m.133



Saturday, March 19th.—Arrived off the Salwen River about 1 p.m., but found that the tide did not suit for going up to Moulmein. We therefore had to anchor until the next morning. Coast pretty, undulating, and covered with jungle. At five o'clock we landed and went to the water pagoda at Point Amherst—a curious wooden structure, held sacred by the Buddhists. Pilgrimages are annually made to this spot from all parts of Burmah and Siam, and are the occasion of vast gatherings of people, who live and sleep entirely in the open air. There is a small native village close by, and also a post-office, telegraph-office, and pilot station; while in the neighbourhood are many of the summer-dwellings of the Rangoon and Moulmein merchants.

On the Irrawaddy

On the Irrawaddy

Sunday, March 20th.—Steam up early. At 10 a.m. we started to ascend the river to Moulmein. Passed the 'Kilwa' coming down, and arrived about one o'clock. Moulmein is134 admirably situated on a range of hills, rising to a considerable elevation on the left bank of the Salwen. The town is embosomed in trees, and pagodas and shrines occupy every prominent position. The population consists largely of foreigners, Chinese and Hindoos forming a large proportion of the aggregate number of 50,000. The navigation from the sea to Moulmein up the Salwen is far more difficult than the passage up to Rangoon. The Salwen is one of the great rivers of Asia. Its upper waters have never yet been reached by European travellers. About half-past four we landed and drove up to Salwen Lodge, where we had tea with Colonel and Mrs. Plant. Afterwards to church, which was very hot and full of mosquitoes.

Monday, March 21st.—Landed early, and went to see the jail and another timber-yard where elephants are employed. At the jail a good deal of wood-carving is done, in addition to basket-making and carpentering. Returned to the yacht to breakfast, and received more visitors, including Mr. Menhenaick, the English clergyman here. Colonel and Mrs. Plant came to tea, and we afterwards landed and went to a lawn-tennis party and to dinner at Salwen Lodge.

Tuesday, March 22nd.—Started very early to see the caves, about eight miles from Moulmein. The smaller of the two contains a large number of sacred images, while the other is of vast dimensions. These caves are situated in a sort of cliff, rising abruptly from the plain. The lighting had been specially arranged for us by the kindness of Captain Dodd.

A large portion of Burmah is still uninhabited. Much larger in area, it has not one-fifth of the population of France. But the increase is immensely rapid. Between 1871 and 1881 it was at the rate of 34 per cent.

The inferiority of Burmah in respect of population, notwithstanding the superior fertility of the soil, is to be traced135 to the physical geography of the country. The great rivers of India flow east or west. The great rivers of the Burmese peninsula flow from north to south. The population of India could readily expand without material change of climate. In Cochin China navigation down the valleys of the great rivers involves changes of temperature and habit such as human nature is not generally able to endure.

Entrance to Caves, Moulmein

Entrance to Moulmein Caves

At an early hour we found the deck, as usual when we are about to leave a port, cumbered by an inconvenient crowd of unwelcome visitors, consisting in the present instance of dhobis, gharry-wallahs, hotel people, and loafers and idlers generally, all of whom we at once proceeded to get rid of as soon as possible. Among the authorised visitors were the servants of some of our136 friends on shore, who had kindly sent us parting presents of fruit, jams, curries, curios, and the most lovely orchids, the latter in such profusion that they were suspended all along the boom, causing the quarter-deck to look more like one of Mr. Bull's orchid exhibitions than part of a vessel. We photographed some of them with great success, and with our gods from the caves in the background, they will make an effective picture.

Ferry at Morcenatin Ferry at Morcenatin

The clothes from the wash had arrived on board, for a wonder, though the much-needed ice had not. It was, however, impossible to wait for it, and accordingly at 12.45 we got up the port-anchor, and at 1.30 the starboard-anchor, and proceeded down the river, taking several instantaneous photographs en route. About four o'clock we met the 'Rangoon' coming up. She is a powerful paddle-wheel steamer, carrying the mails, and doing the distance of 110 miles between Rangoon and Moulmein, or vice versâ, in all states of the tide—which sometimes runs seven knots—in eleven hours. Her decks were crowded with passengers, mostly natives. In the bows was a group of Phoongyees in their yellow robes.

The pilot-boat met us at Point Amherst, with Tab on board,137 bringing more fruit and orchids. He had arrived at Rangoon on the 20th, and had left there this morning, after having had a real good time of it with Colonel Euan Smith and the Manchester Regiment, his only regret being that he had not killed a tiger. We waved adieux to the skipper, pointed the yacht's head to the southward, made sail, and, as soon as it was cool enough, lowered the funnel and set the mainsail.

Wednesday, March 23rd.—A pleasant but very shy breeze, which frequently obliged us to tack. At noon we had made good 60 miles under steam, and 40 under sail, Singapore being distant 1,050 miles. Lat. 15° 33´ N.; long. 97° 13´ E.

Thursday, March 24th.—The twelfth anniversary of Baby's birthday. She was delighted with the presents which had already been collected for her at various places, and with the promise of others.

A hot calm day. We had run 101 miles since noon yesterday, and were in lat. 14° 32´ N.; long. 97° 27´ E. At 3 p.m. we raised the funnel, and at 4 began to steam.

In the evening we had our second nautical entertainment in honour of the day. Muriel's 'first appearance' as 'Little Buttercup,' in the old-fashioned costume of a Portsmouth bumboat woman, consisting of a blue gown, red shawl, and bonnet of antique shape, was greeted with vociferous applause, and it was only out of deference to her feelings of mingled modesty and fatigue (for it was very hot and airless below in the crowded 'assembly room') that her song was not rapturously encored. The evening's entertainment was brought to a close in the orthodox manner by the drinking of healths and the expression of good wishes for all friends, absent or present.

Friday, March 25th.—A fine breeze sprang up at 1 a.m. At 7.30 we ceased steaming, and at 10 a.m. lowered the funnel.138 At noon we had run 138 miles under steam and 32 under sail, Singapore being 837 miles distant. Position, lat. 11° 41´ N.; long. 97° 14´ E.

We saw the Moscos group of islands yesterday evening, and early this morning sighted the North, Middle, and South islands. It is here that the finest, though not the largest, edible birds'-nests are found; but the nests are built by a bird of quite a different species from that of Borneo.

Point Amherst—Water Temple

Point Amherst, Water Temple

Saturday, March 26th.—Early this morning we passed Tenasserim.139

During the day we were continually sighting various little islands, as well as high mountain-peaks belonging to the more distant mainland. At noon we had run 160 miles, and our position was lat. 9° 17´ N.; long. 97° 0´ E., Singapore being still 687 miles distant.

Bound South

Bound South

The day proved intensely hot and steamy, with scarcely any air, though the thermometer was not so high as one would have fancied. Thankful we all were when, after some little delay, caused by the difficulty of obtaining sufficient draught in the furnaces, we were able at four o'clock to steam ahead and so create a breeze for ourselves. Lightning flashed and gleamed on all sides, and the air felt sulphurous and suffocatingly oppressive. At 7.45 p.m. we were overtaken by a heavy squall of wind, accompanied by thunder, lightning, and rain, which obliged us to close all ports and skylights. Fortunately the storm did not last long, though the weather continued showery all night.

Sunday, March 27th.—The day broke dull, cloudy, and squally, and so continued. At noon we had run 139 miles140 under steam and 11 under sail, Singapore being 537 miles distant. Position by dead reckoning—no observations being possible—lat. 7° 5´ N.; long. 98° 16´ E.

In the afternoon we made the Butan Islands. The evening looked dull, but the sky was occasionally lighted up by flashes of the most brilliant lightning. The sea was so full of phosphorescence that when Baby and I had our ante-prandial 'hose' our bathing-dresses glistened beautifully. I felt rather unwell all day, and not being able to go down to afternoon prayers, listened to them from the deck.

Monday, March 28th.—Another squally day, with a good deal of rain and a fresh head-wind. It was delightful on deck, but very hot below.

At noon we had run 170 miles under steam, and were only 350 miles from Singapore. A good deal more lightning at night, and a great deal of phosphorescence; also a very bad-looking, nearly new moon—flat on her back and surrounded by a big halo. I saw a moon at Tangiers with a similar appearance last year, just before the terrible cyclone at Madrid.

To-day we were to the north of Acheen Head and Brasse Island, but too far off to see the land. Scarcely any Cape in the world is sighted by so many vessels and touched at by so few as Acheen Head. Lord Reay warned us most strongly against approaching it too closely in our comparatively defenceless condition, on account of the piratical character of the inhabitants.

Tuesday, March 29th.—I had a good night in the cool deck-house, and woke refreshed. I have been rather overworked lately, and am consequently beginning to sleep badly and lose my appetite.

At noon we were in lat. 2° 55´ N.; long. 101° 28´ E. The run proved to be 188 miles under steam, and left us 175 miles from Singapore.141



We could now see the high land near Sabagore, and in the afternoon found ourselves off Cape Rachada, a pretty little place with tall trees nearly to the water's edge, and a long line of snowy white beach with a background of blue mountains.

Wednesday, March 30th.—At daybreak we were off Pulo Pisang, and shortly afterwards the pilot came on board—an unintelligible and unintelligent sort of man, who could not tell us anything, and who had great difficulty in understanding what we said. He brought us, however, the latest papers.

At 7.30 a.m. the P. & O. steamer 'Bokhara,' from London, passed, and we asked her to report us as following her closely. The morning was brilliant, and the lights and shadows over the city of Singapore made it look even prettier than when I last saw it. As we had to coal, we proceeded right through the new harbour, and moored alongside Tanjong Pagar. Tab landed to make arrangements at the hospital for the reception of the Doctor, who was to remain there during our stay at Singapore, and soon returned with a very favourable report of the establishment. Dr. Simon, who was chief of the hospital at Malacca when we were there in 1867, now occupies a similar post here.

We had not been long at the coaling-wharf when our old friend the Sultan of Johore drove down and came on board. He was delighted to see us, though surprised at our sudden appearance, for he had been on the look-out for two or three days, and had sent two steamers out to meet us, which we had missed by taking another channel. The Sultan was profuse in his offers of hospitality, and wanted us to stay a week or two with him and to make all sorts of interesting excursions up the river in his new steam-yacht. This was impossible: but we promised to go to tea with him at his town house in Singapore to-night, and to visit him at his palace at Johore to-morrow.142

Traveller's Palm, Singapore

Traveller’s Palm, Singapore

We had many visitors in the morning, including one or two friends who had just arrived by the 'Bokhara.' In the afternoon the Doctor landed to go to the hospital, and later on we went on board the 'Bokhara,' and then landed and drove in the Sultan's carriages to the hospital, where, after some delay and difficulty, we found the doctor established in a comfortable room. Afterwards we took a long drive—very much longer than we had expected—through the prettiest part of Singapore. A steep climb up a hill and through a pretty garden brought us at last to the Sultan's town-house, which is full of lovely things, especially those brought from Japan. Such delightfully hideous monsters in bronze and gold, such splendid models, magnificent embroideries, matchless china, rare carvings, elaborate tables and cabinets, are seldom found collected together in one house. After a long examination of143 all these pretty things, Tom arrived, and then we had to show them to him all over again. By this time we were quite ready for tea served in the verandah, with all sorts of nice fruits and cakes. Altogether it was a charming little entertainment, and we regretted having so soon to return to the hotel, where a numerous company assembled at dinner in the large saloon and verandah. The drive down afterwards to the pier in jinrikishas proved delightful to the children.

Thursday, March 31st.—Hove the anchor up at 1.30 p.m. and proceeded under steam, with pilot on board, through the Straits of Johore to the Sultan's palace, where we dined and slept.

Friday, April 1st.—An early drive, and a walk through the charming gardens which surround the palace, occupied the first part of the morning very agreeably, and later we returned to the yacht to receive a number of visitors. At 11.30 we got under way, and, with the Sultan on board, steamed through the Straits of Singapore.

Saturday, April 2nd.—Weighed anchor between 1 and 2 a.m. and proceeded under steam towards Borneo. Mr. Crocker, the recently appointed Governor of North Borneo, who was on board, gave us much interesting and valuable information during the voyage about the new colony which has been formed by the British North Borneo Company.

It was a very hot day, but we were all busily occupied in tidying up and settling down again after our short but pleasant run on shore.

At noon we were in lat. 1° 26´ N., long. 105° 39´ E., having run 105 miles. At 4 p.m. we made Victory and Barren Islands, passing close to them later in the evening.

We were talking to-day of the St. John Ambulance Association, and as an illustration of what a useful institution it would be in these parts, Mr. Crocker spoke of the case of an unfortunate man who had broken, or rather smashed, his144 arm so badly as to make it evident that his only chance of life lay in removing the shattered limb. There was no doctor near, nor anyone who knew anything of surgery. Somebody had, however, fortunately seen a surgical book at Government House. This was brought, and one man read aloud from it, while the other did his best to follow the instructions, and with the aid of an ordinary knife and saw, cut off the arm. The wound healed in a marvellous manner, and the man is now alive and well.

Such an incident is happily quite exceptional. Indeed, it is almost impossible to imagine the combination of courage, determination, and endurance which must have been required on both sides. But minor accidents are of frequent occurrence in these wild regions, and a knowledge of how to render first aid in such cases would often be of invaluable service.

Junks, Singapore

Junks, Singapore

We had an 'Ambulance' case on board to-night, for a vein burst suddenly in the Doctor's leg. Fortunately Pratt was close at hand, and with ice and ligatures145 checked the hæmorrhage. Without his prompt help the consequences might have been serious.

Sunday, April 3rd.—At 6 a.m. sighted St. Pierre. The wind was fair and light, but it did not seem to temper the intense heat. At noon we were exactly under the sun, and were therefore all as shadowless as Peter Schlemihl. Despite the heat we had the Litany at half-past eleven, and evening-service at half-past six. At 10 p.m. we anchored off Tanjong Pulo, at the mouth of the river Kuching, on which stands Kuching itself, the capital of Sarawak.

Tom feels the heat greatly, and has been unwell for the last day or two. To-night I had an anxious time looking after him, and could get no help from the Doctor, who was himself ill and delirious.

Monday, April 4th.—The anchor was hove at 6.30 a.m., and we proceeded towards the entrance to the river, meeting several natives in fishing-boats, who told us that Rajah Brooke was away at Labuan in his steam-yacht the 'Aline.' We therefore hesitated about going up the river, especially without a pilot; but it seemed a pity to be so near and to miss the opportunity of seeing Kuching. So off we went up the narrow muddy stream, guided only by the curious direction-boards fixed at intervals on posts in the water, or hung from trees on the banks.

Navigation Boards, River Kuching Navigation Boards, River Kuching

This plan of making every man his own pilot seems both sensible and useful; but the general effect of the notice-boards was not picturesque. The wording of some of the notices was brief and practical, though such a caution as 'Hug this close on the outside,' painted in large letters on a board at the water's edge, had a certain quaintness about it which amused us. We ascended the river at half-tide, when the channel is pretty clearly apparent; but at high tide the way must be difficult to find. The scenery was somewhat monotonous until we approached Kuching, but we were assured146 that further inland, towards the mountains, it becomes really beautiful. The town itself seemed a busy little place, and there were two steamers lying alongside the wharf. Our arrival, without a pilot, caused much surprise, especially as we had not been expected until a day or two later. In fact, a pilot was just starting for the mouth of the river to look out for us. The 'Lorna Doone,' a small steamer, had also been despatched to Labuan to let the Rajah know that we were coming. After147 reaching our destination we found great difficulty in turning round, owing to the narrowness of the river. The heat was fearful, and the sun poured down through the double awnings with an intensity which must be felt to be understood. We were rather afraid of both the fever and the mosquitoes, and as neither the Rajah nor Ranee was at Kuching, we decided to drop down the river again with the afternoon tide.

After a short delay we landed with Mr. Maxwell at some neat little steps close to the jail, where there appeared to be but few prisoners. The public offices and buildings of Kuching seem to be particularly suitable for this hot climate. Not far off is the market, with nothing left for sale in it except a few vegetables and pines, the meat and fruit markets being over for the day, and the fish—the staple commodity of the place—not having yet come in. At high tide the prahus which we had seen waiting at the mouth of the river would sail swiftly up, bringing the result of their morning's work, the crew of each eager to be first and so to command the best prices.

Most of these prahus are propelled by two, three, and four, or even eight, paddles; and one which we saw had twenty. The larger ones only come out as a rule for warlike purposes or on high days and holidays, especially on New Year's Day, which is a great festival in Borneo, when five hundred warriors frequently compete in one race. It must be wonderful to see their paddles flashing, their boats dashing through the water, and to hear their wild shouts and war-cries. If only we could have stayed, a race would have been got up for our edification, although most of the warriors are out on the war-path just now, looking after stray jobs in their line, arising from the difficulties between the Sultan of Brunei and the Kadyans.

A long narrow room over the market is used as the148 museum at Kuching, and after climbing up by a steep ladder we came to a trapdoor, of which the key could not be found for some time. The collection is interesting, and gives a good idea of the manners and customs of the Dyaks. It comprises specimens of their household utensils, weapons, dress, matwork, besides models of their dwellings and canoes. Some of the basketwork was cleverly woven in beautiful patterns, marked out and dyed with the juice of coloured berries and seaweed. The head-flatteners, or boards used by the Milanos to alter the natural shape of their infants' heads, specially attracted our attention, and I felt it difficult to decide whether the invention aimed at increasing the child's beauty or its brains.

Fire-tube Fire-tube

We were shown one of the ingenious air-compressing tubes which have been used by the natives for hundreds of years past to produce fire. It seemed to afford a proof of the truth of the old adage that there is nothing new under the sun. Professor Faraday alluded in one of his lectures to the possibility of producing fire by means of compressed air as a discovery of comparatively modern science; whereas the fact has long been recognised and put to practical use in these obscure regions of the earth. The war-jackets were made of149 birds' feathers and wild beasts' skins, or of the barks of trees. Sometimes these garments were liberally decorated with small bells, cowries, and pieces of metal cut from old petroleum and preserved meat tins, which jingle and rattle as the wearer moves. Others were like chain-armour, of which the strips were fastened together by bits of hide or leather. The shields seemed of all sorts of shapes and sizes, some long and narrow, some circular, and some large enough to cover a man completely, and they were nearly all ornamented with tufts of black, silky, human hair. The kreises and parongs were similarly decorated, as well as with fine horsehair dyed bright scarlet, and streaked with white. Some of the weapons had splendidly carved handles and very fine bead-decorations, and many of the blades were inlaid with gold and silver. Sulu and Brunei have for centuries been celebrated for their arms, specially for their steel and damascene-worked armour, as well as for their bronze guns. The latter are used as current coin by the native tribes in their more important transactions. If a slave be bought or sold, or a quantity of rice, sago, or beans changes hands,150 the value is almost always reckoned in bronze guns. Grey-shirtings, a more convenient form of money for small dealings, have now gone out of fashion, but blue cloth still holds its own. Chinese 'cash' and Spanish dollars are in circulation, but the natives will not look at a 'bit,' nor at any other sort of coin, either gold or silver. The metal which the natives prefer for their guns is composed of Chinese cash melted up, and for their swords they use the iron bands by which cotton bales are kept together. Outside the Government buildings stand some beautiful and curious cannon, of moderate calibre. Some came from Brunei, while others had only just been captured on the Barram and Leyun rivers, during the Rajah's expedition, and were just being cleaned up and placed in position. The carving and modelling of many of them were extremely good.



Dyak Dyak

The Rajah's carriage, a neat waggonette and pair, driven by an English coachman, was waiting to take us to Mr. Maxwell's house, where we were to lunch. We drove along excellent roads, passing a church, school-house, and club, to a very pretty bungalow, standing in a pretty garden, and perched on the summit of a hill. The air felt much cooler here than in the town or on the river, and gave us excellent appetites for a nice impromptu little lunch. One delicacy consisted of fresh turtles' eggs, which I am afraid we did not all appreciate, for they tasted like ordinary eggs mixed with coarse sand. They are quite round, about the size of a small orange, with soft white leather, or rather parchment-like shells, and are found in great abundance on an island near Kuching. The natives make a coarse oil from the inferior eggs.

The walls of the dining-room were covered with shields, kreises, spears, and arms of all kinds, collected by Mr. Maxwell himself. In some of them mason-bees were making or had already made their nests! No wonder Mrs. Maxwell complained bitterly of the mischief they did, and of the ravages of151 white ants, which are even more destructive. The dampness of the climate, moreover, makes it necessary to have the contents of wardrobes and bookcases frequently taken out and shaken, turned, and examined.

We drove down to the river, intending to take boat and cross to the island and fort, but were only just in time to rush into the Government offices and so escape a terrible thunderstorm accompanied by torrents of rain. In this shelter we had to stay until it was time to embark on board the 'Adeh,' in which we were to go down the river.

In the meantime the rest of our party had been lunching at the fort, where they had much enjoyed the view from the heights—a sight which I rather envied them. Presently we saw them come down in the pouring rain, get into the Rajah's ten-paddled boat, and set off to join us. We were all drenched by the time we got on board the 'Adeh.' Here we were joined by Major and Mrs. Day, as well as by two Dyak soldiers in full war-costume, in readiness to be sketched or photographed.

Shortly after starting the strong current caught our bow and carried us into the bank, causing us to collide with and considerably damage two schooners, as well as the balcony of one of the numerous wooden houses standing on piles in the river. The bowsprit of one of the schooners was completely interlaced with the stanchions, ropes, and railings of our gangway, and it must have been a good stick not to snap off short. The tide was now much higher than when we came up, but the temperature had been considerably lowered by the thunderstorm, and was still further reduced by the rain, which continued to fall throughout the afternoon, making photography well-nigh impossible. The Dyaks seemed at first rather frightened by the camera, which they called 'the engine;' but they were very civil and obliging, and assumed all sorts of attitudes, warlike and otherwise, for our152 edification. Their scanty clothing was elaborately ornamented with bead-work and embroidery, and the little mats which they carry to sit down upon were made of exquisitely fine plaited grass-work. Their arms were highly decorated with human hair of various colours, as well as with cowries, beads, and little woven balls of Brunei work.

In due time we reached Quop, the highest point to which large vessels can ascend from the sea. Here we quitted the 'Adeh,' and took all the party, including the two Dyaks—who were very much astonished, and I think rather frightened—on board the 'Sunbeam' to tea; after which we said farewell with regret to our kind friends, and, with the 'Adeh' to guide us over the treacherous shoals and mud-banks, steamed away, until we were once more fairly at sea and had lost sight of our pilot in the gathering darkness.



Tom had another bad night, fancying he had caught the fever, and that we should all have it from going up the river. I had just persuaded him to take a sleeping-draught, and try and get some comfortable sleep, when I heard a tremendous153 noise on deck. I feared at first that some of the men, as often happens in these out-of-the-way places, had been treated to poisonous liquor and were now suffering from the effects of it; but on running up to make inquiries, and, if possible, quiet the disturbance, I was just in time to catch sight of the rat, whose presence on board has only recently been detected, scuttling off in the bright moonlight. He must have been tempted from his lair on the top of the deck-house by the fragrant smell of the new pineapples from Kuching, which were hung in the port cutter, but on venturing forth he had at once been 'spotted' by one of the men. When I arrived on the scene the whole crew had been called, and were in hot pursuit—I need scarcely say, with no success whatever.

The Fort

The Fort

Tuesday, April 5th.—A calm, close day, with a heavy swell running down from the China Sea, probably caused by a typhoon. Everybody most uncomfortable. Sails and boats were several times reported, but they turned out to be only little islands such as those of Nipa and Nibong, or else groups of floating palms swept down by the Bruit and Barram rivers.154 These two rivers and the Rajang have the unpleasant peculiarity of washing small floating islets out to sea, which seriously endanger navigation.

At noon we had steamed 173 miles, and were in lat. 3° 38´ N., long. 111° 56´ E., Labuan being 222 miles distant.

Tom is still unwell; but I think it is better that he should be obliged to exert himself on deck, instead of remaining in his cabin.






Wednesday, April 6th.—At daybreak it was so hazy that our position could not be ascertained. Between 10 and 11 a.m. sights were worked out, and it was found that a current had set us thirty miles to E.N.E. At noon we had run 230 miles under steam, and, putting the yacht's head round, we steered direct for the northern entrance to Victoria Harbour, off Labuan Island, where we dropped anchor at 2 p.m.

Not long afterwards Lieutenant Hamilton, R.N. (Harbour-master, Postmaster, Captain of the Port, Treasurer, and I believe the holder of half a dozen other offices under the British Government), and Mr. Everett called. They156 told us all the news, and recommended our going alongside the wharf to coal and water at this, the last British port before our long voyage to Australia. It is quite the funniest, most out-of-the-world place we have ever been in, just as Sarawak is the most wonderful little independent state—well managed, complete in itself, with its small army, still smaller navy, and miniature government. Labuan has not possessed a Governor since Sir Charles Lees (then Mr. Lees) left, but it boasts capital public offices, a first-rate Government House, Secretary's residence, church, parsonage, and other amenities of advanced civilisation. Only there is nobody to govern, and hardly anything for the officials to do. At present the colony of Labuan seems a farce, and ought either to be done away with or placed on an entirely different footing. The best plan would probably be to make it an adjunct to the Straits Settlements, at the same time establishing a protectorate over Sarawak and Brunei.

Dr. and Mrs. Leys came on board in the afternoon, and later on we landed with them at the very rotten and rickety wooden pier, and reached a grass sward, by the side of which stand the public offices and a few shops. Some of the party walked, while others drove in various little pony-carriages. Baby and I went with Dr. Leys to see a party of Sarawak Dyaks who had just come in from the Barram River with wedges of gutta-percha, which they were offering for sale, as well as some weapons and clothing just captured. We bought a good many interesting things, such as jackets made of cotton, grown, dyed, and woven by the Dyaks, horn and tortoiseshell combs, kreises, parongs, knives, pipes, tobacco-pouches, travelling-bags of plaited matting, and sumpitans or blowpipes from which poisoned arrows are discharged. They prize these latter very highly, and are generally loth to part with them, so that we may consider ourselves fortunate in having come across these few members of a tribe just returned157 from a warlike expedition judiciously combined with the more peaceful and profitable trade of gathering gutta-percha and india-rubber. We also met a group of bird's-nest collectors, from whom we bought some nests of both the black and white varieties, scientifically known as Callocalia. Then we purchased two small rhinoceros-horns, greatly prized here for their supposed medicinal virtues, and considered to be worth their weight in gold. We succeeded likewise in getting some pairs of splendid pearl-shells, with fine golden lips and incipient pearls adhering to them; but I am obliged to admit that they were frightfully expensive.

After visiting all the shops in the town—few in number, and nearly all kept by Chinamen—we went for a drive into the country. It was just like driving through one vast park, along soft springy green roads leading through fragrant jungle. There were no fences, and fruit-trees of every kind abounded, heavily laden with oranges, pomaloes, mangoes, mangosteens, durians, and other delicacies—all, unfortunately for us, at present unripe.

The incongruity of some of the things which were pointed out to us during our drive was very amusing. There, for instance, stood a large jail, in the happy condition of being tenantless. So long, indeed, had it been empty that the gates stood permanently open, and the jailers had all departed for other lands, with the exception of the chief official, who remained in the colony, indeed, but who had long since turned his attention to other avocations. The system of plurality appears to prevail in Labuan, and it is said that amusing situations have more than once arisen in consequence of the multiplicity of offices centred in one individual. The postmaster, for instance, has been known to write to the treasurer for payment for the delivery of mails, the harbour-master to the same official for the value of coals consumed, the captain of the port for the homeward passage-money of158 some shipwrecked sailors—all three letters and the replies thereto being in the same handwriting. I rather think, by the way, that the Labuan treasury was at a low ebb when we were there; for I know that the question arose whether it contained enough money to meet some fifty or sixty dollar notes of ours which we had given in exchange for our purchases.

The pension-list is very large in the island of Labuan. There is a church, but no acting clergyman, though there are three on the pension-list, and the bishop only comes twice a year, or sometimes twice in two years, according to the requirements of the remainder of his large diocese, which comprises North Borneo, Sarawak, and Singapore, besides Labuan. He is expected to arrive to-morrow from Sandakan, but I fear we shall just miss him.

Malay Village, Labuan

Malay Village, Labuan

There is an hospital, but no resident doctor—only two on the inevitable pension-list. I believe, however, that a surgeon is now on his way out from England to take up the duties of the post. Government House is surrounded by a charming park and garden, and resembles an old-fashioned West Indian planter's residence of the best class. It might well159 serve to illustrate scenes in 'Tom Cringle's Log' or 'Peter Simple.' It is built entirely of a dark wood like mahogany, and the rooms themselves looked snug and well arranged; but, alas, the white ants have attacked one wing of the house, and it will have to be pulled down or rebuilt.

Snakes are not numerous in Labuan, but the other day Mrs. Leys found one comfortably coiled up on the sofa, just where she was going to lie down. Not far from the town Dr. Leys once shot an alligator on its nest, which contained thirty-nine eggs. Two of these he gave me, and I hope to get them home safely, for they are not easily to be procured. We were also shown some beautiful shells and weapons, and a war-jacket made of bearskin, decorated with small bells and pieces cut from kerosene-oil tins.

Our drive down to the shore, along the grassy roads of the park, in the clear moonlight, was most delightful. The yacht had gone off to her anchorage, and we had to wait some time for a boat. In the interval we amused ourselves with a Chinese open-air theatre, waxwork exhibition, and a puppet-show.

Thursday, April 7th.—Weighed at 7 a.m. Mr. Everett and Lieutenant Hamilton came on board, and soon afterwards the mail steamer arrived, with the Bishop on board. We steamed across to the mouth of the Brunei River, admiring the beautiful views on our way, especially at Coal Point, where we transferred ourselves to the Rajah of Sarawak's steamer 'Lorna Doone,' and proceeded up the river, the scenery of which is very picturesque. The late Sultan built a wall of stones across the channel with the view of keeping out the British fleet under Sir Thomas Cochrane and Captain Keppel—now Admiral of the Fleet Sir Harry Keppel; and although he did not succeed in his object, the result has been to make the navigation extremely difficult. The bay itself is surrounded by vast forests, and not long ago a steamer was160 prevented from entering the river for three days, in consequence of a fierce jungle fire, the dense volumes of smoke from which completely obscured the entrance. The hills on either side of the river are prettily wooded, but here and there the land has been cleared and laid out in terraces for the cultivation of pepper by the Chinese. Brunei River has been called the Rhine of the East, and I think it deserves that name better than the town does its proud title of the Venice of the East, the sole point of resemblance in the latter case being that both cities are built upon piles.

Some members of another tribe of Dyaks came on board to-day, with seven heads which they had captured, not on the war-path, but while engaged in a nominally peaceful expedition into the jungle in search of gutta-percha, camphor, and beeswax. They had chanced to come across some natives belonging to a hostile tribe, and had promptly secured as many heads as they could.

The approach to the town of Brunei is extremely picturesque, but the place itself is not imposing. The wooden houses stand, as I have said, upon piles, and there is no means of communication between them except by boats, varying in size from house or shop boats to tiny canoes almost invisible beneath the widespreading hats of their occupants. The flooring of the houses is all open, and all refuse-matter falls or is thrown into the water beneath.

Brunei Hats

Brunei Hats

We anchored a little above the 'Packnam,' and sent a messenger to the Sultan to enquire when it would be convenient to him to receive us, for which purpose he appointed two o'clock. In the interval we went for a row, in quite the intensest heat I ever felt, to see something of the town and the market. The women's hats were enormous—from three to four feet in diameter. Anything more curious than the appearance of a boat-load of these ladies can scarcely be imagined. It looked just like a bunch of gigantic mushrooms161 which had somehow got adrift and was floating down the stream. The marketing is, of course, all done in boats; and it was interesting and amusing to watch the primitive system of exchange and barter. Very little money passed, though some of the hideous old women had little heaps of Chinese cash in front of them. All the young women are kept shut up in the houses, and those let out to buy and sell are indeed frightful specimens of the human race. A couple of durians seemed to buy a hat. I could not arrive at any idea of the price of other articles. The fish is brought up here from the sea, just as at Kuching, by large boats to a certain point and thence in prahus. Both fresh fish and stale fish—very stale and offensive it seemed to us—appeared to be the leading article of commerce.162

Besides the small canoes and prahus there were a good many large house and shop boats, with quite a goodly supply of stores, all owned by Chinese.

Borneo produces about half the sago used by the civilised world. On our way among the houses we had many opportunities of observing the primary process of preparing sago for the market. It is not very inviting, and is productive of a most sickening smell. The large logs of the sago-tree are brought down from the jungle by river and moored in the dirty water against the piles underneath the houses, the consoling feature of this arrangement being that the water is running. One log is selected at a time for treatment. A man stands over it, and with an instrument, something between a hatchet and a hoe, extracts all the pith of the tree, which is the sago. This he pitches on to a mat suspended between four poles over the river, and, having poured water over it, he and any members of his family who may happen to be available proceed to run round and jump and dance upon the whole mass, singing and smoking all the time. This pressure has the effect of squeezing the fine sago starch through the mat into a trough below (usually an old canoe), full of water, where it remains until it settles. The water is then run off, and the white sticky mass is sold to Chinamen. It is satisfactory to know that it goes through a good many more washings before it is considered fit for the market.

Brunei is said to have been at one time a town of 25,000 houses—such as they were—with an average of from five to seventeen occupants to each house. This does not, however, include the Sultan and his relatives, with their numerous retinues. Then the numbers dwindled down to 10,000 inhabitants; and at present it is difficult to believe that there are more than half that number; but we are told that some 5,000 are now away on the war-path.



At two o'clock exactly we landed, or, to be more precise,163 climbed up a narrow ladder, the rungs of which were very far apart, to a wooden staging supported on piles. It was a difficult feat to perform gracefully, and the noise of a salute of nineteen guns, fired almost in our ears, did not tend to facilitate matters or make one feel more comfortable. Then we were led up a long wooden pier, on which stood some small but beautifully ornamented cannon, of Brunei manufacture, until we came to a large room, at one end of which stood a sort of daïs, like an enlarged bedstead, covered with mats. On this the Sultan—an ugly, smiling, feeble old man—shortly afterwards took his seat. He was attended by retainers bearing betel-boxes, spittoons, weapons, and all sorts of things which his Majesty might want or fancy that he wanted. He received us affably, shaking hands with us all, and inviting us to be seated, after which he ordered large wax candles to be placed in front of Tom and me, Tom's candle, however, being much the bigger of the two. This was intended as a great compliment, and if times had not been so bad and beeswax so scarce, the candles would, we were informed, have been of even greater size. We were then offered cigarettes and excellent tea, flavoured with herbs, very hot and sweet.

The sides of the room had been left open, for the sake of coolness, but the surrounding space was filled by a dense mass of human beings eager to see what was going on, so that there was not much fresh air. Conversation rather languished, for neither of the interpreters was very quick, and we had considerable misgivings as to the value and correctness of their translation of our pretty little speeches.

At last, after presenting the Sultan with some slight offerings and expressing our warm thanks for the kind reception accorded us, we retired, being escorted to the boat by the First Wazier and another officer of state. Having again admired the cannon, and heard the history of their manufacture, we re-embarked in our boats under a fresh salute of164 nineteen guns. I fear the poor town of Brunei must have been put to great expense by the Sultan's desire to do us honour. Just as we were starting, the large candles, hastily blown out, were put into our boat, as a last and very special compliment.

Pangeran's Arrival

Pangeran’s Arrival

We returned straight on board the 'Lorna Doone,' and had scarcely arrived ere we saw a long, smartly ornamented thirty-paddle canoe emerge from among the houses near the Sultan's palace, and come swiftly towards us. It had a white flag at the stern and a green flag at the bow, and was crowded with people carrying umbrellas of all sorts, sizes, and colours,165 which served as insignia of the rank of their owners. Among them two very large yellow Chinese umbrellas, surrounded by three little carved galleries, were conspicuous. One was carried over Pangeran Bandahara, and the other over his younger brother, Pangeran di Gadong, who holds the position of Second Wazier of Brunei, but who had not appeared at the palace in consequence of his not being on speaking terms with the present Sultan. The two royalties, without their umbrellas, but accompanied by an interpreter and a few of the chief officers, came on board the 'Lorna Doone,' and were received by us in the extremely small deck-house, the remainder of the suite having to content themselves with looking through the windows and strolling about the deck. It was very puzzling to be obliged to invent fresh civilities, for we felt that our recent visit had quite exhausted our stock; but I luckily bethought me that there was some connection by marriage between the Sultans of Brunei and Johore; and the discussion of this point, which must have cost the poor interpreters much mental effort, lasted us a long time. In fact, with the exception of a short interval spent in enquiries as to our respective ages, it carried us on until it was time for our visitors to take their departure, which they did with many effusive hand-shakings, and many no doubt charming little farewell speeches.

The way in which the connection between the Sultans of Brunei and Johore came about is rather curious. The Sultan of Sulu had been engaged in negotiations for the marriage of a princess of Johore (an aunt of the present Sultan) to one of his sons. The Sultan of Brunei had also set his mind on the same young lady. When the Sulu fleet of prahus started to bring the fair—or dark—princess to her new home, the Brunei fleet followed as far as the Straits of Johore, and anchored outside, but in the night a swift Brunei prahu stole softly along the shore, carried the young lady off, crept through the fleets again, and was soon out at sea on its way back to Brunei. The166 next morning, when the princess was not forthcoming and the true state of affairs was discovered, the Sulu fleet was naturally anxious to start in pursuit; but the Brunei prahus intercepted them, and before the Sulus could fight their way through, the lady had been safely lodged in the Sultan's harem at Brunei.

If the weather had not been so exhaustingly hot, and Tom had not been so much afraid of our getting fever, I should have tried to persuade him to take us to Sulu, which must be a most interesting country, judging from the description of Burbridge, Wallace, and others. The natives retain many traces of the old Spanish dominion in their style of dress and ideas generally. They have excellent horses, or ponies, and are adepts at pig-sticking. Occasionally boar-hunts are organised on a large scale, which allow of a fine display of horsemanship, as well as of gaudy costumes. At the feasts given by the Sultan, the dishes, and even the plates, are all of mother-of-pearl shells, of the finest golden-lipped variety, each with one or more large pearls adhering to it. In some cases visitors have been tempted to pocket their plates, and strict watch and ward has therefore to be kept over them. There were some Sulus on the 'Lorna Doone' with us, wearing horsey-looking trousers, short jackets with buttons on the sleeves, bright sashes stuck full of knives and other arms, and jaunty little turbans, something like a Maccaroni's cap with the traditional feather stuck in it. They seemed altogether superior in point of civilisation and appearance to the Sarawak and Brunei Dyaks; and if the taste of the lady whose adventures I have just recorded was at all consulted, I cannot help thinking she made a mistake in the selection of her adopted country.

After the Sultan's nephew had departed, we had a visit from Achu Mohammed, who has been British Consul here for many years, often in very troublous times. With him came an army of shopkeepers, or rather manufacturers, from whom we bought several curious specimens of Brunei wares. The167 metalwork is really beautiful, especially the brass sirrhi-boxes, and some kettles with an ingenious arrangement in the lid, causing them to whistle loudly when the water boils. This place is also celebrated for its earrings, which are exactly like champagne-corks in size and shape, and are made of gold or silver gilt, and studded with rubies, emeralds, and other stones found in the neighbourhood. The narrow part of the cork is fixed in a large hole in the ear, down the back of which a row of little earrings is often worn in addition.

Brunei looked very pretty as we left it, in the light of the now setting sun. The 'Packnam' had already started on her return journey, and there was not much time to spare if we wanted to save the tide and the light. On our way down the river we again saw the heights from which Sir Harry Keppel had bombarded the town, and the Chinese pepper-terraces, now fast falling to decay. By five o'clock we had arrived alongside the 'Sunbeam,' with quite a cargo of purchases, and soon afterwards, having said farewell to our friends and entrusted to their care a very heavy mail for England, we steamed away.

The spot where we had anchored in Brunei Bay was exactly opposite the Muara coal-mines, of which we could just see the shafts, with one or two houses beside them. On our return to the yacht we found that the owners of these mines had been on board, and had expressed a hope that we would postpone our departure long enough to enable us to visit the colliery, which seems likely to become a valuable property. The seam is twenty-six feet thick, and the coal is of good quality. After the Labuan failure, however, one is disposed not to be over-sanguine in such matters. When Mr. Cowie first brought his wife out here the place looked so desolate and dreary that she absolutely refused to land. After a while she was persuaded to make a closer inspection, and, being a very bad sailor, has never left the place since, except once, when the168 Rajah of Sarawak sent his steam-launch for her on New Year's Day to enable her to go and see some sports at Labuan. She was afraid to come on board the yacht, and we had not time to call upon her and take her some books and papers, as I should like to have done, for her life must be terribly isolated.

I have often been astonished to see how well people resist the relaxing influences of these out-of-the-way places. Their houses all have a nice homelike look; the ladies are well dressed, and apparently keep their households in excellent order. In the rare case of unexpected visitors dropping in, meals are produced at short notice without bustle or confusion, the table being often decorated with flowers, and always arranged with refinement and elegance. What struck me as perhaps even more remarkable than the neatness and order of their houses was, that these ladies, who have to do, or at all events very closely superintend the doing of, the more important part of the household work, talk far less about their servants and domestic troubles than many people in England, who only have to give an occasional order. They have also plenty of conversation on other than local subjects, though there are no circulating libraries within reach, and the supply of books and newspapers must necessarily be limited. It may be that this scarcity leads them to study the volumes which they possess more closely.

Friday, April 8th.—To our great disappointment, we passed Gaya Island and Bay before daybreak, and were therefore unable to see anything of the magnificent harbour, where the North Borneo Company has one of its many stations.

At 6 a.m. we opened out Ambong Bay, behind which rose Kina Balu (in English 'the Chinese Widow'), 13,700 feet high, looking most beautiful through the morning mist. A little to the north of this spot the Tainpasick River runs into the sea, and we are told that the best way of reaching the169 lower elevations of the mighty mountain, with their endless wealth of orchids and pitcher-plants, lies on that side.

Pitcher-plants and Kina Balu Pitcher Plants and Kina Balu

Finding that to pass outside Banguey Island would involve our making a large circuit, and losing some fine scenery, we decided to go through the Mallewallé Channel, and to anchor off Kudat for the night. At noon we had come 160 miles under steam, Kudat being thirty miles distant. At 2 p.m. we reached the northernmost point of the island of Borneo, which used to be the favourite place of assembling for the large fleets of pirate prahus, formerly the terror not only of the neighbouring Straits but of much more distant seas and countries.170

The entrance to Marudu Bay, another of the many fine natural harbours on this gulf-indented coast, is most picturesque. At 4 p.m. we anchored off Kudat, in the small bay of that name, which is only an indentation of the shore of the larger Marudu Bay.

We landed at the usual rickety Borneo pier, and were met by Mr. Davies, the Resident, and Dr. Lamb, the company's doctor for this district. Tab and Mr. Pemberton soon made friends with Dr. Lamb, and went out snipe-shooting with him, the rest of the party meantime strolling about the bazaars, which, though neither large nor well stocked, afforded an opportunity of picking up a few curios, such as saws from the nose of a saw-fish, sirrhi-boxes, gongs, old china jars, Java sarongs, and so forth. We were also shown two large heaps of gum from the interior, lying on the seashore ready for shipment. Then we took a few photographs, including one of a house on piles, and another of a long Borneo house, in which many families live under one roof, with separate entrances for each family. Afterwards we strolled slowly on up the hill, towards the Residency. It was a pretty walk, but rather tiring this hot evening. I felt nearly exhausted myself, and was grieved to see how completely done up Tom was by what ought to have been for him very easy work. When at last the verandah was reached he was quite worn out and glad to lie down in one of the comfortable basket chairs. Delicious tea and cool champagne-cup soon refreshed us, however, and made us better able to admire the charming garden, with its profusion of plants and flowers, and to watch the antics of two tame mias, or orang-outangs, which were chained in separate palm-trees close to the house. They were ugly—nay, hideous animals—but very amusing in their ways. Their names were Zachariah and Jane; and Zachariah, being the tamer of the two, was allowed to run about loose. He came to his master to be fed, then ran up his own palm-tree, from which he171 jumped easily on to Jane's, and tried to entice her to other tree-tops; but of course her chain prevented this. It made quite a little comedy, for when Zachariah had teased her sufficiently he brought her bunches of fresh leaves, and evidently did his best to induce her to, as it were, kiss and make friends. We watched them with much interest for a long time, and at last tried to take a photograph, but I fear they were too restless to allow it to turn out well.



Some fine specimens of the heads of wild cattle shot by Mr. Davies stood in the verandah. One head alone required four men to move it. Mr. Davies gave me some interesting172 curios brought from a village where a rather severe fight took place recently. The natives posted themselves with great cunning behind some rocks on the top of a hill, which our people had to scale. From this shelter they hurled down spears and poisoned arrows, wounding many of their assailants, while our rifles were of no effect against them until the height had been carried.

On our way back to the yacht we had to cross a rickety wooden bridge over a muddy creek, in which some of the party thought they saw a crocodile; not a rare sight on this coast, though they are not so numerous here as in Sarawak, where the Government offers a reward of a dollar a foot for all those killed. Last year 2,000 dollars were paid for 2,000 feet of crocodiles of all sizes and ages.

Dr. Lamb, who dined on board with us, appears to be greatly interested in his work, though the life is rather rough. He has a good deal of riding about the country to vaccinate the natives, who seem fully to understand the value of the operation in mitigating the ravages of smallpox—a disease by which the country was at one time decimated. Our regret at not having been able to stop at Gaya was increased when we heard from Dr. Lamb that the Assistant Resident, Mr. Little, had just returned from a successful ascent of Kina Balu, having reached the summit by a new route, and brought down a wonderful collection of plants and flowers.

About ten o'clock Mr. Davies came on board, and with Dr. Lamb and Tab started off on a shooting expedition across the bay.

Saturday, April 9th.—The night was hot and oppressive, and we could not help feeling somewhat anxious about the sportsmen, whose expedition in search of wild cattle has a decided spice of danger in it. Two o'clock came, and then four, and still they did not return. At last, to our great relief, at half-past six they arrived alongside, bringing with them173 a fine young Sambur buck, the carrying of the carcass having delayed them considerably. They were disappointed not to have succeeded in killing a buffalo, especially as they had seen several herds of them in the distance; but the natives who had been sent to drive the cattle performed their task with such indiscreet ardour, and with so much noise, that of course they frightened the cattle away.

On the Fore-yard On the Fore-yard, making the Land

Directly the sportsmen came on board we started, and proceeded under steam close under Malleangau, and thence southward of the fatal Egeria Rocks to the western extremity of the island of Mallewallé, passing to the northward of Mandarilla, and to the southward of Kakabau, whence we steered for Tigabu. By noon we had steamed eighty-seven miles since leaving Kudat. Tom went up on the fore-yard at 6.30 a.m., and did not come down until 1.30 p.m., when we had virtually passed the most dangerous part of the coast. We sent his breakfast up to him in a bucket, for he did not dare leave his post for one moment, the channel being most intricate, and the only guide the difference in colour of the coral patches. He suffered considerably from the heat of the almost vertical sun, which blistered his legs, in spite of extra protection, and made the glasses, which he had constantly to use, so hot that they burnt his hands and eyes, as they did ours when he brought them down on deck.

About 4 p.m. we touched on a coral patch, in two fathoms,174 not marked on the chart (in lat. 6° 40´ N., long. 117° 52´ E.), which rather astonished us, and caused us to go still more slowly and carefully for some time. The sea being absolutely smooth, and the sky overcast, there was neither break nor reflection to help the look-out, though Tom thought that he had noticed something peculiar in the colour of the water a few moments previously. He was almost continuously in the foretop again from two o'clock until dark, when he took up his position on the topgallant forecastle.

We passed between Tigabu and Lipeendung, and outside Sandy Island, Balhalla, Lankayau, Langaan, and Tong Papat, entering the Bay of Sandakan at 11.45 p.m., and anchoring off the town of Eleopura exactly at eight bells.




In the Bird's-Nest Caves, Madai In the Bird's-Nest Caves, Madai

Easter Sunday, April 10th.—Eleopura looked extremely picturesque in the pale moonlight, with the grand sandstone bluff of the island of Balhalla standing out boldly in the foreground against the starlit sky; but the coast-line seemed still more beautiful in the bright morning sunshine. The brilliant light was relieved by some heavy thunder-clouds fringing the Bay of Sandakan and hanging in denser masses over the mouths of the numerous rivers which empty themselves into it. Balhalla, with its cliff of red sandstone running sheer down to the sea,176 is clothed on the shoreward side with the richest tropical vegetation, including vast quantities of the beautiful nepenthes, or pitcher-plant, which forms so prominent a feature in the flora of Borneo.

Mr. Flint, the harbour-master, came on board at six o'clock to offer us the hospitality of his bungalow. After breakfast he and Mr. Crocker landed with the kind intention of arranging for us to spend a short time on shore to recruit a little from the effects of the intense heat, the air being naturally much cooler on the hills than down in the bay. We had service at 11.30, and the present Governor, Mr. Treacher, and afterwards two other gentlemen, came to lunch. Later on we all landed, some of us going to the little church, where Tom read the service. There is no resident clergyman at Sandakan, but the Governor supplies his place every Sunday, except when the Bishop happens to pay a visit to the place, as he did last week.

The luxury of getting on shore to large airy rooms, with deep cool verandahs, and the feeling of perfect rest and repose, can only be fully appreciated after a long and anxious voyage in a hot climate on board a comparatively small ship. Nor can anyone who has not suffered, as we all have, from prickly heat, understand how pleasant are fresh-water baths. We all felt far too comfortable and delightfully indolent for letter-writing, or even for reading, and could do nothing but enjoy to the utmost the delights of the shore under such agreeable conditions. Our good-natured host had turned out, bag and baggage, in order to make room for us, and had gone to Government House, leaving his comfortable bungalow entirely at our disposition. Some of the gentlemen, for whom there was not sufficient room, went to another bungalow not far distant.

Monday, April 11th.—We were all up early, anxious to make the most of our time in this pleasant spot. Tom went177 off for a ride with the Governor, while Mabelle and Baby took a long walk with Mr. von Donop (the Secretary) and Mr. Callaghan; and Muriel and I proceeded to the top of the hill to see the Doctor. Some of the gentlemen went off shooting, and did not return until late in the day.

Mr. Flint's Bungalow

Mr. Flint’s Bungalow

I had been very anxious to go to the black bird's-nest caves of Gomanton, but was assured by everybody that the difficulties would be found insurmountable. All agreed that it was absolutely necessary to await the return and the report of Messrs. Walker and Wilson, who had gone to Gomanton to survey the road and to ascertain the practicability of utilising the vast quantity of the excellent guano with which the178 floor of the caves is thickly covered. A shorter expedition has been therefore proposed, and it is arranged that we shall cross the bay and look at the bilian-wood cutting. The party divided, some going in the steam-launch, and some in Captain Flint's boat to a picnic on the other side of the bay. The distant views of Sandakan are very fine, as is also the aspect of the north bluff of the island of Balhalla, where the best white birds'-nests in the world are found, and are collected at terrible risk to life and limb. We glided through a perfect archipelago of small islands, where we saw curious houses, inhabited by Bajaus, or sea-gipsies. These huts are built on piles in the water, and round them dart the natives in their tiny canoes, throwing spears at the numerous shoals of fish. So pleasant had been the voyage that we seemed to reach our destination almost immediately. It was a long unfinished pier, composed of a few split Nipa palms fixed, at intervals of a couple of feet apart, on piles driven into the bed of the river. This primitive jetty stretched far out into the stream, and was reached by a ladder of the same rough style, with a space of at least two feet between each rung; not at all a landing-place for ordinary mortals—European, at all events—and only suitable for angels, Dyaks, or monkeys. Nevertheless it is the timber-loading station for ships trading with Sandakan, and stands at the mouths of Sapa Gaya and Suanlamba Rivers, down which most of the best timber is floated in rafts or towed by steam-launches from the interior. Fortunately some native prahus were drawn up alongside the pier, and into these we stepped, and so got ashore, climbing up the steep bank to the cosy little bungalow above. There we found Messrs. Walker and Wilson, now on their way back from the caves, of which they gave an interesting description. They seemed, however, to be firmly impressed with the idea that it would be impossible for us to visit them, the difficulties of the expedition being far too great for anyone179 unaccustomed to Borneo jungle-life. They had been obliged to swim rivers, wade through mud up to their arms, sleep in damp caves, and endure other hardships not very conducive to health in a malarious district. Of course they had got completely soaked through, baggage and all, and were now doing their best to dry everything on the grass—a process not facilitated by a tremendous thunder-shower which180 came on suddenly during our visit. The effect of the storm was very grand, as the heavy clouds came rolling up the bay to discharge their burden of electricity and rain just over our heads; but the moment it passed, out came the sun as brightly as ever. We had a most cheery picnic in the little five-roomed bungalow. The one piece of furniture, except the table and two chairs, which our hosts had brought with them, was a comfortable hammock-cot, of which the children at once took possession, to make a swing. While we were sitting in the deep verandah, a steamer arrived alongside the pier, towing several rafts, which we saw unlashed and pulled to pieces in true primitive fashion, the heavy bilian-wood or ironwood of which they were composed being simply cast into the river, as near the shore as possible, to be fished out at low tide. Bilian-wood when newly cut is of a dark sand-colour, and, being hard and durable, is used for purposes where those qualities are required.

Kapuan Timber-station Kapuan Timber-station

All pleasant things must come to an end, and we were soon obliged to start again on our return voyage. We shipped Mr. Walker and Mr. Wilson on board the steam-launch and towed their boat. All went well till we got near the entrance to the Bay, where we encountered such a high sea that we had to cast the boat adrift to prevent her from being swamped. We stopped at the yacht to give our friends an opportunity of seeing her. Nearly all the crew, and even the stewards, were ashore at rifle-practice. Several visitors came on board and detained us for some time; so that when we landed we were only just able to have a look at the Museum and get up to Mr. Flint's bungalow in time to dress for dinner at Government House, where we found quite a large party of gentlemen assembled to meet us.

None of our sportsmen turned up to dinner except Mr. Cook. Afterwards various kinds of dances were performed by the natives for our entertainment. In some of the war-181dances the men displayed much agility and gracefulness, darting from side to side in their war-cloaks of toucans' feathers, which floated out behind them with each movement. They were armed with shields, spears, and kreises. It was really a most picturesque scene, and the large open verandah of Government House, with the background of sea, sky, and distant mountains, seen in the bright moonlight, with the 'Sunbeam' peacefully at anchor in the foreground, formed an appropriate setting. The Dusuns and Sundyaks are very fond of dancing, and seize every opportunity of indulging in the amusement. In times of abundant harvest, it is said, dancing goes on in every village all night long, and night after night.

Dyak Dance

Dyak Dance


Tuesday, April 12th.—Mabelle and the children went out for a ride this morning, while Tom and I paid a visit to Dr. Hoffmeister, whom we found much better. It was very hot work walking down to the shore again, and even the children seemed to find the temperature rather trying. Fortunately for the inhabitants of Sandakan, the nights are always cool, a fact to which the little community owes its excellent health and the preservation of its strength and energy.

In the course of the morning we visited the town to see the bazaars and have another look at the Museum. There is a fish and general market at Eleopura, besides Government buildings, barracks, a hospital, hotels, several stores, and a club, to say nothing of a small temporary church, a mosque, and a joss-house. On the green in front of the Government building stands a handsome Irish cross, raised to the memory of poor Frank Hatton and other explorers who have perished in North Borneo. At the Government Offices we found a few interesting curiosities, particularly some finely woven mats that had been prepared in the interior for the Colonial Exhibition in London but were not ready in time; an elephant's tusk of enormous size, and some teeth found in the jungle near here. This collection will doubtless form the nucleus of a larger museum. It comprises also gems, weapons, rat-traps, bird-calls, eggs, stuffed orang-outangs, and specimens of native stuffs and mats. The sarongs from Java and Celebes are very curious, the pattern being elaborately worked in a sort of thick coloured wax, which makes them quite stiff. Some of them are expensive, costing sixty or seventy dollars each. There did not seem to be any of the curious fire-tubes for producing fire which we had seen in the Museum at Kuching.

I returned early on board the 'Sunbeam' to complete the arrangements for resuming our voyage this evening. Further deliberation has convinced us that the visit to the Gomanton183 Caves is quite out of the question, notwithstanding the kind offers of assistance which we have received from Mr. Treacher and others. We have accordingly decided to content ourselves with an attempt to reach the Madai Caves in Darvel Bay, which are said to be somewhat easier of access. Mr. Treacher, Mr. Crocker, and Mr. Callaghan have offered to accompany us, and to engage the requisite men for the expedition.

There was a large party to lunch at Government House, and more came in afterwards to attend my informal Ambulance meeting, at which the Governor took the chair, and Tom explained the work of the society. I also ventured to say a few words, and Mr. Crocker supported the movement very cordially. Everybody in Eleopura was present, besides many from Kudat and Silam, and all seemed interested in the subject. Dr. Walker took the scheme up warmly. I earnestly hope it may go on and prosper. There can be no country where it would be more likely to be of use, considering the wild sort of life people have to lead here. I presented the new centre with a roll of anatomical drawings and a good many books and papers. I trust, therefore, that we may regard the Eleopura branch of the Ambulance Association as fairly started.

After the meeting, feeling very tired, I went in my chair with Mr. Wilson to the church, which is a pretty little building, and thence, a little higher up the hill, to the hospital. This appears to be an excellently well-managed institution, but is still sadly in want of a European ward, especially in view of the fact that the trade and population of the place are rapidly increasing. Ascending a few steps higher we arrived at the club, with its deep verandahs and spacious windows and doors, arranged to catch every breath of air, and to command the finest views. The cemetery lies in another valley right behind the club. It is a pretty spot, nicely kept, and quite away from the town.184

Borneo Weapons

Borneo Weapons

From the club we proceeded to the rifle-butts, passing through so narrow and overgrown a path that my bearers declined to proceed, until Mr. Wilson peremptorily insisted upon their doing so. Even as it was, I had to walk the last part of the way. Arrived at the butts, we found that our forecastle-cook had proved himself the best shot by several points.185 Altogether, the practice may be regarded as highly satisfactory, considering how long it is since our men have had an opportunity of handling a rifle. I distributed certificates of efficiency, and then we all went back to an early dinner at Mr. Flint's, after which we had to re-embark. The nice-looking Sikhs who are in charge of the convicts here having carried our luggage down to the boats, there was nothing for us to do but to say good-bye to our kind hosts, and return to the 'Sunbeam' once more. We found her lying alongside the wharf, where she had come to take in water, and quite crowded with our new friends, who were determined to see the last of us, and who almost all brought us some little curio to keep in remembrance of our visit to Sandakan. The tide was low, and it was no easy task to get down to the deck of the yacht from the somewhat lofty pier. At last we were safely on board, and slowly steamed away, amid a volley of ringing cheers, which we returned by sending up blue lights and flights of rockets.



The carrying capacity of the yacht was now rather severely tested, for in addition to our own party we had Messrs. Treacher, Crocker, and Callaghan as passengers, besides some thirty Sikhs, policemen, coolies, and others, whose services would be required for the expedition to the Madai Caves.

Sandakan, bearing N.

Sandakan, bearing N.


Wednesday, April 13th.—Oppressively hot. We made Tanjong Unsang at daylight, and steamed southward and westward along a fine coast. At noon we had come 135 miles, and were in lat. 4° 57´ N., long. 118° 47´ E.

All hands were busily engaged during the morning in preparing the large cutter for Tab's projected shooting expedition this afternoon. She is a fine big boat, temporarily fitted with a ridge-roofed awning and boards on which beds can be placed, thus making her almost like a house-boat. Everything that could be thought of as likely to be wanted was put into her; but notwithstanding all that foresight and care could do, I felt rather uncomfortable about this lonely and somewhat risky enterprise.

In the afternoon we steamed down a little out of our course towards the island of Timbu Mata, which is said to abound with deer and wild pig, to drop the cutter with Tab and four men from the crew in her, all armed with rifles, cutlasses, and revolvers, besides their sporting weapons. Then we proceeded on our course to Silam in Darvel Bay, 175 miles from Sandakan, where we anchored about 6 p.m. A prahu came alongside at once, manned by natives and having on board a specimen of the worst type of rough Australian gold-diggers—very tipsy, poor man, and very anxious to come on board the yacht. His efforts in this direction were, however, repulsed, and we finally induced the native crew to take him back to the shore.

Darvel Bay is a most lovely spot, and in the sunset light I thought that I had never seen anything more beautiful in the world. We went ashore as soon as possible, having, however, first to climb with extended though uncertain strides up one of the dreadful wide-runged ladders which confront us at every pier. This performance landed us on what appeared to be a very rickety kind of platform, with, as usual, a great deal of open space in the flooring. Being assured that it was187 quite safe if we only stepped out boldly and with confidence, we advanced as well as we could, and found the task not so difficult after all, though it must be confessed that the flooring seemed terribly springy and elastic. The two small dogs were carried, but poor 'Sir Roger' was left to follow us as best he could, meeting with many a slip and many a tumble on his way. It was too dark to see much of the town, which appeared to be clean and tidy, with several well-furnished shops in the principal streets. There is also a Government station here, and an experimental garden. The harbour is well sheltered, and although it contains a good many coral-banks, vessels drawing sixteen feet of water can anchor quite close to the settlement.

Entering River, Madai

Entering River, Madai


The reports of explorers in search of gold on the Segama River are satisfactory. A road is now being constructed which will render access to the gold-fields much easier than at present. It is, however, impossible for Englishmen to work the fields, and Chinese labour will most likely have to be employed. The process adopted by the natives of extracting the gold is primitive in the extreme.

We met our friend the Australian digger again, and heard that he had come down from the fields with three companions, all ill with fever, one being so bad that he had to be carried all the way. Still they were satisfied with their success, and were now celebrating it by drinking their profits away as fast as possible.

After strolling slowly up to Mr. Callaghan's comfortable bungalow, we rested a little and had tea, and then returned on board to pack up and make ready for our early start to-morrow. The steam-launch was already afloat with her boiler in her, but a good deal had yet to be done in the way of preparing the gig, fixing the awning, and stowing the stores, photographic gear, &c.

Thursday, April 14th.—It was nearly midnight before all had been arranged in readiness for our early start and possible camp-out for at least one night; and even then there was a great deal that had to be left unsettled, precise information as to roads, rivers, distances, and so forth not being easily obtainable in this partially developed country.

At 3.30 a.m. I was called, and tried to dispel my drowsiness by the pleasing consciousness that an expedition to which I had long looked forward with such deep interest was about to be undertaken, and, as we had reason to hope, through the kind exertions of Mr. Treacher and Mr. Callaghan, duly accomplished. An hour later, these two gentlemen, accompanied by Mr. Crocker, came on board; and then we started directly in a long native canoe, with a crew and escort189 of thirty coolies, Sulus, Dyaks, and policemen. Our destination was the famous caves of edible birds'-nests at Madai. The steam-launch, well laden with extra coal in bags, and a few spare coolies, led the way, having in tow the heavy gig, filled with provisions of all sorts, and materials for camping out. Then came the long prahu—also in tow—laden almost to the water's edge with her thirty passengers and their gear. The extent and weight of this little flotilla reduced our progress to a speed of about five knots. It was a perfect morning, and the air was quite calm except for the slight breeze which we created for ourselves as we progressed. Soon after seven o'clock the sun became unpleasantly hot, and we were glad to spread our awning. At eight we breakfasted extremely well, the necessary cooking being done over a small spirit-lamp, in the absence of kerosene or any of190 the mineral oils, the use of which is not allowed on board the 'Sunbeam' or any of her satellites.

Commissariat Department Commissariat Department

A little before nine we reached the mouth of the river, and safely accomplished some intricate navigation through narrow channels between coral reefs. The mists were still lying in solid white masses in the valleys and between the mountain peaks; but the small densely wooded islets that dotted the bay were mirrored in its unruffled surface. The scene was altogether most picturesque, and reminded me a good deal of the splendid harbour of Rio; but without, of course, the Corcovado or Sugar-loaf Hill, or those curiously shaped Organ Mountains in the background. Once in the river, the view became quite different, and much more shut in, owing to the dense walls of mangrove and other tropical vegetation which lined either side of the wide stream, up which the tide was swiftly flowing. The air now seemed fresh and pure; but in other states of the tide it is, I am told, very much the reverse.

In about half an hour we reached a junction of two streams, where the boats composing our flotilla had to part company—the steam-launch to be left behind, the prahu to lead the way, and the cutter to be paddled and punted up after us as far as she could go. This point proved to be only to a small landing-place, at which eight prahus were drawn up near two temporary wooden kajang huts belonging to the bird's-nest takers, members of the Eraan tribe, to whom the caves are let. Birds'-nests, it may be remarked, are a profitable property, yielding a royalty of 15,000 dollars, or over 2,500l. a year, to the North Borneo Company.

From the cutter we embarked in the prahu, and from the prahu we finally landed in a swamp, where an hour's rest was allowed for the coolies to get their food, whilst we completed the arrangements for our return voyage, which, on account of the tide, promised to be much more difficult.191

At 10.45 a.m. we commenced the real hard work of the expedition. Everyone walked except me, and I had to be carried in a very light chair by two coolies, who were frequently relieved. It was rather serious work for the bearers—to say nothing of my feelings—for they had never carried a chair before, and the way lay through thick jungle, constantly interspersed by morasses and swamps, and obstructed by fallen trees, overhanging branches, thorny creepers, and marshy streams. At first I had many misgivings, but soon gained confidence when I saw how careful the men were, and how anxious to avoid an accident. Two coolies went on in front, and with their sharp parongs cut down or hacked away the more serious obstacles. If either the chair or I caught in a tree or a thorn, or if any special difficulty presented itself, somebody appeared from somewhere and rendered prompt assistance.

I scarcely know how they managed to make their way at all through the dense jungle which hemmed us in on every side, or to disentangle themselves from the numerous obstacles which beset our path. If one of the bearers suddenly plunged up to his waist in a morass, someone else instantly came forward to pull him out and to raise the chair again. When huge fallen trees obstructed the way, one or two men rushed forward to assist in lifting the chair and me over the barricade. In less than two hours I had been borne over an intricate and fatiguing path, up hill and down dale, with frequent changes but with no stoppages, until at last we fairly faced the limestone cliffs which we had seen from the distance rising straight out of the jungle. We had passed, and in fact followed for some distance, the fresh spoors, eighteen inches in diameter, of an elephant, the sight of which caused great excitement among the natives, especially when we met other natives armed with guns.

Return of the Head-Hunter

Return of the Head-Hunter

One bird's-nest taker whom we passed had just seen192 two elephants, and a great palaver ensued, in which the word 'harden,' or some such equivalent for ivory, frequently occurred. Many of the trees on the line of route were very fine, specially the tapangs, the splendid stems of which, supported by natural buttresses, rose in several instances at least two hundred feet from the ground, unbroken by a single branch. In the stem of the tapang the wild bees build their combs, and beeswax is an important and valuable product of the country. These trees, either singly or in groups, are the property by inheritance of the natives; so that whenever any attempt is made at clearing, or even193 cutting down a single tree, one of these small proprietors is sure to come forward and swear that his interest, derived from his father, his grandfather, or some even more remote ancestor, is likely to be affected. The timber itself is valuable, and where two buttresses occur exactly opposite to one another the width of the tree is often so great that large slabs, with a fine grain capable of taking a high polish, and large enough to form a dining-table for twenty-four people, have been cut from them. The Borneo jungle is so dense, and is so completely overshadowed by the trees rising from it, that there is no undergrowth, and the effect of bareness is produced; though I dare say that, if one could only look down on the forest from the car of a balloon, the flora of creepers, orchids, and parasites would be very beautiful wherever the light and air could penetrate.

Presently we came across a good subject for a sketch. I was waiting at the edge of a broad and winding river, shaded by tall trees, and flowing over a gravelly bed, while two men went on in advance to sound the depth of the stream before attempting to carry my chair across. Just then two hunters appeared from the forest and seated themselves on large mossy boulders a short distance apart. They put down beside them their baskets and bundles of nests, their little mat travelling-bags, and their elaborately carved and cased spears, holding fast to their kreises, parongs, and bows and arrows. They were literally armed to the teeth in their own fashion—a very formidable fashion it is too—and I very much doubt whether the gun which one of them had lying beside him was not the least terrible weapon which he possessed, so skilled are they in the use of their simpler implements of the chase and of warfare.

Continuing our difficult way, we at last emerged from the green darkness of the forest and found ourselves within view of the limestone rock or mountain in which are the marvellous194 bird's-nest caves which we had come so far to see. The cliff presented a striking effect, rising white and shining in the bright sunlight, slightly veiled by the tall trees and creepers, the leaves of which shimmered in the hot noontide haze. The dark entrance to the caves, stuffy as it was, and obstructed by the curious framework of rattans on which the nest-hunters sleep and cook and stow their arms, was a pleasant relief to the heat and glare without. Still more welcome was the sight of the coolies bringing refreshments and cooling drinks. If I, who had been carried all the way in comparative luxury, felt glad to see them, it can be imagined what must have been the feelings of the rest of the party, including Mabelle, who had walked the whole distance, and struggled gallantly over a most uncertain and treacherous forest track. We were not able to get into the cave at the opening where the men were encamped, and had to go some way round to another entrance.

From this point, each provided with a candle to light our way, we advanced into the darkness, stumbling, sliding, and occasionally falling on the slippery rocks, but still able to admire the noble proportions of the caves, their lofty grandeur, and the fantastic shapes of the limestone pillars by which the vaulted roof was supported. The whirring, fluttering, and twittering of many birds and bats could plainly be heard in the larger caves, which were densely peopled with winged and feathered inhabitants, and the roofs and sides of which were blackened by their nests. The Segama River, which we had ascended earlier, flows through these vast caverns, sometimes over a hard, stony bottom, but oftener over or through a mass of guano many feet in thickness, into which our guides more than once sank suddenly, emerging in a state which can be better imagined than described. Split palms were laid across the most awkward places; but it was extremely difficult to keep one's footing on this primitive causeway, and despite195 the assistance of the gentlemen, who carried me across many of the streams, it was impossible to escape an occasional wetting.

At one point the guides and leading members of the party, going on rather too rapidly, left us in complete darkness, and after waiting some time in the hope that they would discover their mistake and return, we had no alternative but to struggle up a most fearful precipice towards the only ray of light which we could see in the distance. It really was hard work, not only on account of the steepness of the ascent, but of the slippery and slimy condition of the rocks. Sometimes we knocked ourselves with painful abruptness against hard projections, at other times we sank to our knees in a mass of soft, wet guano teeming with animal life of various kinds, but mostly of the biting or stinging character. Mr. Crocker slipped and fell down some thirty feet or so, but fortunately emerged unhurt, though covered with black slime from the crown of his head to the sole of his foot.

After tremendous exertions we reached the end of our climb, during which I had been not only once but many times sorely tempted, and even strongly urged, to turn back. When we paused to rest, our eyes, by this time accustomed to the dim religious light, could perceive human figures crawling and clambering about the roof and pinnacles of the vast cavern in which we now found ourselves, and could observe many narrow rattan ladders hanging in the most precipitous places, or stretching horizontally across almost unfathomable abysses.

Fixed among the rocks on every side were strong hooks and pegs, to which the intrepid monkey-like nest-hunters attach their long, swinging ladders. Clinging to these, they proceed to prod all the nests within reach with a long bamboo pole, split into the shape of a three-pronged fork at one end, with a candle attached. They easily detach the nests, and rapidly196 transfer them to a basket hanging by their side. Having cleared the accessible space around them, they then unhook one end of their frail ladders and set themselves swinging like a pendulum, until they manage to catch another hook or peg, and then proceed to clear another space in the same way.

All this goes on throughout the day, and very often throughout the night as well, for the birds are then at home, and by their appearance the natives can judge more accurately of the age of the nests, on which their value depends. Occasionally, but not very often, a ladder breaks or a peg becomes rotten, and the hardy climbers tumble into the depths below, with almost invariably fatal results. The ladders employed are sometimes, I was told, as much as 500 feet in length, and we saw some ourselves over 150 feet long. Truly the seekers after birds and their belongings, whether eggs, feathers, or nests, are a daring race, alike on the storm-beaten cliffs of St. Kilda and of Norway and in the mysterious caves of Borneo and of Java.

Imagine our disappointment when, after another severe effort, we reached the fissure in the rock which admitted the light from above, and found that it afforded no means of egress except for bats and birds. Not even a Dyak or Sulu could have squeezed his way in or out by it, and there was nothing for it but to retrace our steps. Fortunately, however, we had not gone far before we met our guides with lights coming at last to look for us, and they led us to a comparatively easy exit from the cave; though in order to reach it we had to pass over horrible morasses of guano, into which we were only prevented from sinking by a path or bridge of two-inch palm stems affording a most uncertain foothold. On the way we passed more nest-hunters, and at the mouth of the cave we found another camp of wooden framework huts, on the top of which lay several men smoking, with their kreises, parongs,197 spears, and travelling-bags of matwork beside them. They would not part with any of their weapons or implements, even for more than four times their value, alleging that it would bring them ill-luck to sell them while engaged in an expedition, but adding that if we would go to their village, after their return, they would not only sell but willingly give us anything we might take a fancy to.



In the course of our descent from the cave we came across ten or a dozen bilian-wood coffins, which were excavated in this spot about fifty years ago. They were of the plainest possible make, and were evidently rapidly falling to pieces. It is thought that further excavations will lead to the discovery of finer and older coffins, for it is almost certain that wherever these caves exist they have been extensively used at one time as primitive burial-places.

Arrived at last by the side of a clear running stream, we were glad to take the opportunity of performing some much-needed ablutions, and to rest for a while. How tired we all felt I need not attempt to say. It required, indeed, a great effort of the will to take a few photographs and to carefully pack the birds' eggs and nests which we had collected, before resuming our journey.

We were all sorry when it was time to leave our pleasant halting-place at Madai and start on our homeward way. The path through the jungle was, however, delightfully shady, and was altogether easier than our upward course. The last view of the cave, looking back from the little hill facing it, just before entering the jungle, will always remain in my mind, though I saw it somewhat hazily through the gauze veil in which my head was wrapped up, in order to protect me from the hornets, which had already stung several of our party severely.

I have before now been in tropical forests and jungles, and they always produce the same awe-inspiring, and indeed198 depressing effect. The almost solid green walls on either side of the narrow track; the awful stillness which prevails, only occasionally broken, or rendered more intense, by the shrill note of a bird, the cry, or rather pitiful wail, of a monkey, the crashing of some larger creature through the dense undergrowth, as well as the profound solitude, will easily account for these feelings. Having overcome my first sensation of nervousness, caused by constant slips and slides on the part of my bearers, I had an excellent opportunity for contemplation until, in little less than two hours after leaving our last halting-place, we reached a spot close to where we had landed.

Sulus at Silam Sulus at Silam

It was delightful to find that in our absence a charming little house had, by a piece of kind forethought, been built for us on the banks of the clear running stream. Raised as if by an enchanter's wand, this hut in the jungle was an inestimable comfort, and enabled us to rest quietly for a short time. At first it was proposed that we should certainly dine and possibly sleep in it; but when it was remembered that, pleasant and picturesque as might be the situation, we were still in the midst of a malarious mangrove swamp, prudent considerations pre199vailed, and it was decided to move on. After giving time, therefore, to the coolies to cook and eat their well-earned repast, everything was put into the prahu, which lay half in and half out of the water. Mabelle and I then seated ourselves in the centre of the boat, while everybody else pushed and shouted; some walking, some wading, some occasionally swimming. Thus we proceeded down the shallow stream, the prahu frequently on her beam-ends on one side or the other, until righted by friendly hands; shipping comparatively little200 water, but still taking in enough to make everything damp and uncomfortable.

Returning at Low Water

Returning at Low Water

It was a curious sight, the long boat, pushed by fifty or sixty natives and about a dozen Europeans, now in the water, now almost out of it. More than once I thought the natives must have been jammed between the bank and the boat when they slipped into a deep hole, and the great length of the prahu prevented her from turning quickly. At the nest-hunters' landing-place we found ourselves fairly high and dry, and had to be carried, prahu and all, for some little distance until we reached the deeper water beyond, only to find our further passage blocked by the trunk of a huge tree, so firmly imbedded in the mud that the united efforts of our large band of followers were powerless to move it. We had therefore to be pulled and hauled over the obstacle—a feat accomplished with much shouting and hullabaloo. First our long sharp prow rose in the air, submerging our stern, and taking, of course, some water on board; then the process was reversed, and we went bows under. At last we emerged quite safely and in deep water. Most of the swarm of swimmers quickly scrambled into the boat and converted themselves into paddlers, while the remainder swam ashore and either waited on the bank for the return of the prahu or shouldered their kajang mats and cooking-utensils, and trudged off again through the swampy jungle to the little rest-house which we had quitted a short time before. In the fast-fading twilight the scene looked picturesque and characteristic.

Resuming our now rapid voyage down the stream, we presently reached the spot where our own boats were waiting for us. Mabelle and I at once took possession of the cutter, the gentlemen of the steam-launch, and all proceeded, as far as circumstances would allow, to change our wet and dirty clothes. Then we joined company, and as soon as the prahu had discharged all her passengers and cargo our little flotilla201 proceeded in the original order down the river. On the way we enjoyed a capital little dinner, commencing with small fish about three inches long speared by a boat-hook, and concluding with quite the most delicious pine I ever tasted, grown in the experimental gardens of Silam.

At last we reached the mouth of the river, and were once more on the bosom of the open sea. Rather an agitated bosom it was too, just now, heaving in such a manner as to toss the cutter about a good deal and threatening to completely upset the native boat with its heavy load. In fact, the prahu behaved in the most alarming manner, absolutely refusing to steer, and turning broadside on to the constantly increasing swell. Our native pilot, too, in the steam-launch, did not mend matters by steering a very erratic course, and going a good deal further out to sea than was necessary. The islands, however, soon afforded shelter, and the moon rose over a scene of comparative calmness and repose. Most of us took advantage of this condition of things to rest a little after the labours of the day, and we found ourselves actually alongside the yacht before we had any idea we were near her. It was exactly half an hour after midnight, and Tom was delighted and greatly relieved to see us, having quite abandoned all hope of our appearing until the morning, and having conjured up all sorts of gloomy forebodings as to the ill-effect of sleeping in mangrove swamps, besides attacks from hostile natives, and other horrors. The three gentlemen went off in our launch, towing the prahu, after receiving our warm thanks for the great trouble which they had taken, to which we were entirely indebted for the success of a most interesting expedition. With a grateful heart for pleasure enjoyed and difficulties overcome, I went to bed, completely worn out, at the end of what may fairly be regarded as another red-letter day of the present cruise.

Tom had been unable to accompany us on our expedition,202 considering it a public duty to put together the very interesting information which had been communicated to him by the authorities charged with the administration of affairs at the numerous ports at which we had touched on the coast of Borneo. He wished to complete his work, so that it might be read to Governor Treacher before being despatched to England. [This paper appeared in the 'Nineteenth Century.']


Dutch Fort, Macassar

Dutch Fort, Macassar



Friday, April 15th.—Although it was nearly two o'clock before I went to bed, I was up before seven this morning ready to go ashore with Tom and Mabelle to say good-bye to our friends, and to see how Silam looked by daylight. It is a neat, picturesque little village with most of its wooden houses standing upon piles. Landing was, as usual, a difficult matter, for there was nobody to hold the boat, and no one to help us. The people in Darvel Bay have evidently very204 little curiosity, for they scarcely turned their heads to look at us, though European ladies have rarely landed here before. Near the shore, little shops, mostly kept by Chinamen, are established on either side of the pier. Their exterior is not imposing, but inside a very fair display of goods is to be found.

The bay looked quite animated this morning, a fleet of small boats having arrived during the night, filled with Sulus, Eraans, and Bugis. Each boat carried enormous outriggers projecting on either side, and had an awning thatched with kajang mats; while dried fish, arms, gongs, cooking-pots, bags, and odds and ends of all kinds hung from the poles which supported the roofing. A great deal of barter was going on on shore. At the first shop I went to I saw one of the bird's-nest collectors whom we had noticed yesterday pitch down a bundle of nests on the floor without saying a word. The Chinaman at once fetched some weights, weighed the nests, and mentioned the price in one word. Three words escaped the nest-hunter's lips, which resulted in the production of sundry bright-coloured cotton Manchester cloths, some evidently modern kreises (probably made at Birmingham), besides bird-calls and pipes. In the next shop were two dapper little Sulus in Spanish-looking costumes, with dozens of pairs of the golden-edged pearl-shells, which we had searched for in vain the night before last. The bargain was not yet concluded, so that it was useless for us to try to trade. The shells, being bought and sold by weight, are handled rather roughly; but it was in vain that I endeavoured to persuade them by signs not to throw them about so carelessly at the risk of breaking their delicate edges. I did at last, however, succeed in getting some good specimens, finer than any we had yet met with. In the same shop were also some Bajans, or sea-gipsies, whose stock-in-trade consisted of a miscellaneous collection, including dried trepang, strings of very uninviting205 dried fish, smaller pearl-shells, little skins of animals and birds, and rattan canes in the rough, but much cheaper and better than those to be bought at Singapore or elsewhere. The rattan is the stem of a creeping prickly palm, the scientific name of which is the calamus. The rotan saga is the ordinary rattan of commerce, but there are several others of more or less value.

We walked up to the bungalow along a grassy path with kids and calves tethered on either side. Alas! their mothers had not yet returned from the mountains, so that the promised supply of fresh milk and butter to which we had been looking forward was not forthcoming.

Our friends at the bungalow were up and dressed, and none the worse for their fatigues of yesterday. Having mutually congratulated each other on the success of the expedition, we heard how lucky we had been in escaping the Borneo pest of leeches. It has not been raining much lately, but in wet weather they are worse than in Ceylon. Not content with attacking the passing traveller from the ground, they drop down from every branch or leaf, and generally the first intimation of their presence is the sight of a thin stream of blood oozing from their point of attack. If an attempt to pull them off be made, their heads remain fixed in the flesh and cause festering wounds. The only way of getting rid of them is to apply a little salt, a bag of which is always carried by the natives when going on an expedition into the jungle. Strong tobacco-juice is another remedy.

We had now to return to the boat, and to re-embark in the 'Sunbeam,' leaving the curios which we had purchased to be sent home by the earliest possible opportunity. Our friends complimented us with a salute of nineteen guns; to which we could make but a feeble return, as our armament only consists of two brass guns for signal purposes. None the less did we quit the shores of North Borneo with grateful appreciation of206 its beauties and a vivid sense of its countless undeveloped riches of every kind. Pleasant reminiscences of almost everything did we carry away with us, except of the intense heat, which I believe has been rather unusual this year, even the oldest inhabitant complaining nearly as much of it as we did. Just at the last moment the steam-launch 'Madai' arrived from Sandakan for Mr. Crocker and Mr. Treacher, bringing letters and presents of flowers, as well as things which we had accidentally left behind. She appeared to be a frail little conveyance for a voyage of so many miles under such a broiling sun, and a good fast vessel something like the Rajah's 'Lorna Doone' seems needed to maintain regular communication between the various ports of North Borneo, Brunei, Labuan, and Singapore.

We got under way at 8.45 a.m., and were much relieved when, at about ten o'clock, the cutter was descried in the distance, and still more rejoiced when we picked her up between the isles of Timbu Mata and Pulu Gaya. Tab came on board directly, looking very well, but tremendously sunburnt, as were also his four companions; but all were in great spirits. They brought with them two deer, of which the meat was too high to be used. It seemed that the shooting party had not been able to reach the island on the day they left us, for the 'Gleam' draws a good deal of water, and the passage was intricate and shallow. They therefore slept comfortably in the boat, and in the very early morning, seeing deer grazing, they landed, ascended a hill, and shot two of them. They also saw a good many pigs, but could not get any. Soon afterwards the Sulu chief and his followers, whom we had sent to look after the sporting party, arrived; the chief waving the letter, of which he was the bearer, in his hand, in order to allay the apprehensions which his appearance might naturally arouse. He and his people quickly spread themselves over the island, shouting, and waving white207 flags, in complete disregard of all the usual rules of civilised deer-stalking. Of course no more game could be got that day, for it was impossible by signs to stop the noise. While two of our men were out in search of deer, they were alarmed by the appearance of some canoes from the mainland, containing thirty or forty natives. They proved, however, to be only harmless fishermen in search of the great tepai mother-of-pearl shell and smaller black oyster-shell, in which pearls are found, and which abound on the shores of the island. The night was again passed on board the cutter, and this morning another unsuccessful deer-hunt took place. They found waiting in the sun to be picked up by us the hottest part of the entertainment. The tea had unfortunately been left behind, but they had some very good cocoa, which supplied its place.

The Shooting Party

The Shooting Party

At 9 p.m. we rounded the north end of Sibuco Island and208 passed through the Sibuco Passage, entering the Celebes Sea at about 11 p.m.

Saturday, April 16th.—A very hot day. At noon we had steamed 235 miles, and were in lat. 2° 47´ N., long. 119° 32´ E. Busy settling down all day. Rather an anxious time as regards navigation. Tom spends most of his time in the foretop. About 10 p.m. we entered the Straits of Macassar.

Throughout the day we had been exposed to the danger of collision with the numerous submerged logs and trunks of trees carried down by the river Koti and floating on the surface of the sea. The current must be tremendously strong in this river, which gives its name to a large tract of country; for not only are trees and logs washed down, but huge clumps of Nipa and Nebong palms, looking like (what they really are) small floating islands, are carried out to sea with their numerous feathered inhabitants. More than once when a sail had been reported in the offing, it proved to be one of those masses of vegetation, the branches and large fan-shaped leaves of which presented a deceptive likeness to masts and sails. Those which can be seen are not dangerous; it is only the half-submerged logs, almost invisible, yet large enough to sink a ship, for which a careful look-out has to be kept, both in the rigging and on the bows. In fact, we were going slow and half-speed all day, our course having constantly to be changed to avoid these obstacles. Our arrival at Macassar may therefore be considerably delayed.

Sunday, April 17th.—Another fine calm day, but intensely hot. We crossed the line about 7 p.m., and soon after eight sighted the high land of Celebes.

Monday, April 18th.—At 4 p.m. we were off Cape Katt; at 8 p.m. off Cape Madai. At noon we had come 211 miles under steam, and were in lat. 4° 14´ S., long. 118° 43´ E., being eighty-three miles from Macassar. Only the faintest breath of air could be felt, and even that soon died away. The sails209 which had just been set had therefore to be taken in again, and we proceeded as before under steam. This little experiment delayed us somewhat, but gave everybody on board some exercise.

Under the Sun Under the Sun

Tuesday, April 19th.—At daybreak we found that we had drifted far to the southward during the sudden squalls and constant shifts of wind in the night. The currents hereabouts are exceedingly strong, and the soundings taken early in the morning proved that we were in unpleasantly shallow water—in fact, almost touching what we made out to be the edge of the Spermonde (?) Archipelago. Tom was at the masthead, endeavouring to pick up some landmark. At last he was able to distinguish the highest peak marked on the chart to the south of Macassar; whereupon he fearlessly gave the order to go full speed ahead in a NN.E. direction between that island and Satanga. This was much pleasanter than groping about by means of soundings, and it was a great relief to think that we were at last fairly on our course for Macassar. The210 scenery became lovely, and at 12.15 a.m. we reached our destination, and dropped anchor near the lighthouse.

The approach to the Dutch town of Macassar is very fine, and no doubt the beauty of its situation, as well as its convenience as a place of call for ships of all nations, caused it to be selected as the first European port in the East Indies. The roadstead was fairly full of shipping, which included a gunboat, one or two steamers, and several large sailing-ships. Pratt went ashore the instant the health-officer and harbour-master (these officers being combined in one person) had left, in order to find out the capabilities of the place; for we had been unable to gather anything from our first visitor, who could not speak a word of anything but Dutch, and contented himself with handing in a bundle of ship's papers, printed in every known language under the sun, and allowing us to select therefrom the one which suited us. Pratt soon returned, reporting, to our joy, that there was an ice-making machine ashore, and that, although it was only a little one, and would take nearly thirty-six hours to make the required quantity, we were promised a thousand pounds of ice by 7 a.m. to-morrow, or half as much again by one o'clock. After some deliberation the latter arrangement was agreed to.

About four o'clock we all landed, and under the guidance of the best interpreter to be found—a Chinaman who could speak nearly twelve words of English—we set off to inspect the ancient Dutch East Indian town. It is the oldest European settlement in the Eastern Archipelago, and has the air of respectability which belongs to old establishments of every kind and in every part of the world. In comparing Macassar with Singapore, it must be remembered that under Dutch administration the community is left in a much greater degree to its own resources. Of the results of the two systems of government, in relation to the general prosperity, there is211 no room for doubt and uncertainty. The exclusive policy of the Dutch, the obstacles opposed to commerce, when not carried on under the national flag, have produced a lethargy and stagnation, with which the marvellous growth of free and untrammelled trade at Singapore offers a striking contrast. The Dutch have but a slender hold over the Celebes. The physical configuration of the island is singularly straggling. To this circumstance it is probably due that the population is divided, both in race and language, into several distinct tribes.



Outside Fort Rotterdam a large level space is reserved as a public park. Its drives are shaded by fine avenues. In the outskirts of Macassar the streets become lanes, passing through rich groves of tropical vegetation. The slender dwellings of the native population, formed of matting stretched on a light framework of bamboo, are seen peering out from underneath the overhanging canopy of dense foliage.

Our Coachman, Macassar Our Coachman, Macassar

Having called on the Governor, we drove to the Hôtel Macassar, where, with the assistance of the captain of a Norwegian ship, dinner got itself ordered. After taking this precaution we drove out into the country, or rather the suburbs, to look at a large collection of native arms, from this and the surrounding islands. We were specially interested in the narrow Dyak shields and the wider ones212 which come from further north, as well as in the masks, skulls, and war-cloaks from Bali, Lombook, and Sumbawa, the musical instruments and weapons peculiar to Celebes, and the spears and kreises from all parts. So badly arranged were they, however, and kept in such a dark outhouse, that it was impossible to appreciate their value properly. After inviting the owner—a superintendent of police—and his family to visit the yacht, we continued our drive among pretty villas and bungalows, surrounded by the usual tropical fence, with gorgeous flowers and fruits inside it, until we came to a wealthy Chinaman's house and garden. The house was full of quaint conceits, and in the garden was a very pretty artificial pond surrounded by splendid ferns and palms, looking something like a natural lake in the midst of a tropic jungle. Then we drove on, through more valleys and past more gardens, to the Government coal-stores, which Tom inspected with interest, and which, he was told, contained at that moment 5,000 tons of coal. Afterwards, some of the party went on board the Dutch gunboat 'Bromo,' which acts as guard-ship, and is now coaling alongside.

Dutch (Native) Soldiers Dutch (Native) Soldiers

The Netherlands Company's steamship the 'Bajara' sails to-morrow at 4 a.m., and the mail closes at six o'clock to-night; so it was necessary to hurry back on board in order to get our letters and journals ready in time, though we had luckily fore213seen this emergency. The dinner was very good, and was served in a nice cool airy room at the hotel, landlady, waiters, and all being extremely civil, though we could scarcely exchange a single word with any of them.

Wednesday, April 20th.—Went ashore at 7.30 with Tom, Mabelle, Baby and Mr. Pritchett. The latter goes home to-day in the 'Bajara.' The morning was fairly cool. Mabelle and I went to one or two shops and tried to make some purchases; but, between our ignorance of the language and our poverty in the current coins of the country, we did not meet with much success. While we were at one shop, a very smart lady drove up in a neatly turned-out victoria and pair. She was dressed exactly like all the natives, except that the materials of her costume were better. A sarong, worked in a peculiar native way with wax, was wound round her waist, and a snowy white close-fitting linen jacket trimmed with lace and insertion formed the rest of her costume. Her hair was neatly fastened up with a comb, but her feet were bare, except for prettily embroidered slippers.

Macassar Policeman Macassar Policeman

After breakfast most of the party went off on various shopping expeditions, for it will be Muriel's birthday to-morrow, and we are all providing suitable offerings for the occasion. Mabelle and Mr. Pemberton also went to the police-officer's residence to try and bargain for some of the arms which we had seen last night. There were eight or ten weapons which I should dearly like to possess. However, it proved to be hopeless to attempt to drive a bargain, for the collection could not be broken up,214 and I did not care to give the price asked for the lot. The owner presented me, however, with a magnificent Gordonia rubra, which I regarded as a great acquisition, having long searched vainly for this very plant. It is a specially perfect specimen, with beautiful feathery tips. After great trouble Mr. Pemberton also succeeded in buying for me a few spears, kreises, and baskets from Celebes, Sumbawa, and Bali, together with some so-called tortoiseshells (really turtle-shells) of a larger size than any that we had seen before. Still more pleased was I to get ten skins of the exquisite birds-of-paradise which Wallace so well describes. He considered himself amply repaid for toil and hardship by the discovery of their previously unknown splendour, which one can quite imagine, even in their dried and imperfectly prepared state. I have seen them alive at Singapore in an aviary, and they are indeed gorgeous.

Meanwhile Tom and I had returned to the yacht, where we were endeavouring to hasten such necessary preparations as coaling, watering, and provisioning. I vainly tried to get a little rest, notwithstanding a stream of visitors, including the Governor, Commandant, and many others. We all lunched ashore, and found most of the officers messing at the hotel, but at a separate table.

After further trouble in money-changing we went on board the yacht again, to find that the plentiful washing of decks, so necessary after coaling, was in full force, as well as the general air of confusion always prevailing before setting off on a long voyage. There being no chance of a start at present, Mr. Pemberton kindly went off to try to get back a cheque which Tom had given for the tortoiseshells and birds-of-paradise already paid for by me on shore. Pratt reported that he had the greatest difficulty in getting his stores off intact; for as fast as he had bought a thing and paid for it, the object or objects—as in the case of twenty-four chickens—suddenly disappeared into the recesses of the market again,215 and had to be hunted up with great difficulty and many excuses and subterfuges on the part of the sellers. The poor man with the cheque soon came on board, looking very frightened, and bringing a peace-offering of large green lemons and a bunch of the finest gardenias I had ever seen, the blossoms being eighteen inches round.

Just before dark we got under way. After our long passage under steam everybody pulled at the ropes—Tom, children, and all—as if they had never seen sails set before; the men working with a will, and shouting their loudest and merriest songs. All sounded most cheery; but the wind was unsteady, and the result was that the sails, which had been sent up with the fervent hope that they might remain set for the next six weeks, had to be lowered abruptly in as many minutes, and the anchor hastily dropped, to avoid a Dutch brig moored close to us, into which we were rapidly drifting in consequence of a sudden shift in the wind. The poor brig having already been in collision, and having lost her bowsprit and foretopmast, it would indeed have been hard to damage her again, though I expect we should have got the worst of it, for she was of a good old-fashioned bluff build. It was annoying to fail in getting under way under sail, and still more so to have to wait two hours while steam was being got up. At 8.30 p.m. we started again, more successfully this time, and proceeded quietly through the night.

Thursday, April 21st.—Muriel's birthday. Ceased steaming at 6 a.m. A heavy roll throughout the day, with occasional strong squalls. All suffering more or less from the motion. At noon we had steamed sixty-three miles and sailed twenty-one. In the afternoon the weather improved. At 7 p.m. the ship was put before the wind in order to let Neptune come on board, after which the ceremony of crossing the line was carried out with due solemnity and with great success. The costumes were capital, the procession well216 managed, and the speeches amusing. Muriel was delighted with an offering of shells, and Neptune finally took his departure amid a shower of one rocket (we could not afford more for fear of accident) and a royal salute of eight rifles. We could watch the flames of the tar-barrel in which Neptune was supposed to have embarked, as it rose and fell on the crests of the waves for many miles astern, looking like a small phantom ship.

Fishing-boat, Allas Strait

Fishing-boat, Allas Strait

Friday, April 22nd.—Bad night; heavy squalls throughout the day. Made and rounded the Paternoster at 8 a.m. Much cooler on deck; no apparent difference below.

At noon we had come 174 miles under sail, and were in lat. 7° 56´ S., long. 116° 56´ E. In the afternoon we made the entrance to the Allas Strait.217

The Strait of Allas is one of several navigable channels by which ships can pass from the confined waters of the Eastern Archipelago into the Indian Ocean. It divides the island of Sumbawa, famous for possessing the most active volcano in the world, from the island of Lombok. At the eastern end of Lombok, a magnificent peak rises to a height of 12,000 feet, and overshadows the narrow channel beneath with its imposing mass. The effects of scenery were enhanced by a sharp squall, which drove us into the strait at a thrilling speed, under half-lowered canvas. When the squall cleared away the peak of Lombok stood forth clear of cloud, in all its majesty and grandeur, backed by the glorious colours of the evening sky. During the hour of twilight a massive cloud rested motionless in the sky immediately above the peak. Beneath this lofty and imposing canopy, and seen more dimly in the fading light, this solitary mountain presented by turns every feature that is sublime and beautiful in landscape.

Saturday, April 23rd.—To-day proved lovely after the rain, but there was very little wind. At noon we had come 66 miles under steam, and 62 miles under sail. I have felt wretchedly ill for the last few days, and seem to have lost both sleep and appetite. The motion, I have no doubt, has something to do with my indisposition, for we are going close-hauled to a wind from one quarter, and there is a heavy swell on the other, so that we roll and tumble about a great deal without making much progress. Every scrap of the Macassar ice has melted in these three days, instead of lasting three weeks, as did the ice from Singapore. This is a terrible blow, though we are consoled by the thought that the weather will be getting cooler every day now, and that we shall therefore want it less. Unless exceptionally fortunate in making a quick passage, I fear, however, that we shall run short of provisions before reaching our first Australian port, Macassar having proved a miserable place at which to take in stores.218

Our Wind-bob Our Wind-bob

At 4.30 p.m. we found ourselves suddenly, without any warning, in a curiously disturbed stretch of sea. It was like a tidal wave, or a race off a headland, except that there was no tide and no cape, and we were many miles from land. I immediately thought of Wallace and the volcanic waves which he alludes to, especially when I observed that the water was covered with greenish yellow objects, which at a first hasty glance I took for spawn of some kind. We soon had buckets and nets over the side, and fished up some of the floating particles, which proved to be bits of pumice-stone, rounded by the action of the waves, and covered with barnacles from the size of a pin's head upwards. So thickly were they encrusted that it was almost impossible to recognise the original substance at all. The barnacles, with their long cirri projecting and retracting quickly in search of food, gave the whole mass an appearance of life and motion very curious when closely observed in a219 basin. There were sea-anemones among them, and one little bit of stick, of which a long black snake or worm had scooped out the interior and thus made itself a home. Saribowa, said to be one of the most active volcanoes, is not far distant from the spot where we picked up the pumice-stone.

It is a lovely, clear, starlight night, with no black clouds to threaten coming squalls of wind or rain. The breeze, though not so fair as we could wish, is at any rate cool and refreshing, and the reduced temperature is felt as a great relief to all on board. Even the poor carpenter, who has been ill for some time past, is beginning to look better, though his eyes are still very painful. I am sorry for him, poor man, and for ourselves too, for his services are wanted at every turn just now. We are making all ready for the bad weather, which we may fairly expect to meet with when once in mid-ocean. All the big boats have been got in-board to-day, chairs have been stowed below, the top of the deck-house cleared of lumber and live-stock, cracked panes of glass replaced, battening-down boards looked out, new ropes rove, and all preparations made for real hard sea work. How I wish we were going down the east coast of Australia, inside the barrier-reef, instead of down the stormy west coast! I dread this voyage somehow, and begin even to dislike sailing. Perhaps my depression is partly caused by that stupid boy Buzzo having allowed my favourite lark, which I had brought from Hyderabad, to escape to-day. He sang much more sweetly and softly than most larks, and was a dear little bird, almost as tame as my pet bullfinch. Now he must meet with a watery grave, for he was too far from land when he flew off to reach it.

Sunday, April 24th.—Weather still calm, fine, and hot, but no wind. Our little stock of coal is running very low, for we have been obliged to get up steam again. At 11.30 we had the Litany, at which I was able to be present, on deck. At noon we had steamed 127 miles, and were in lat. 11° 25´220 S., long. 116° 39´ E. Tom is getting much better again, but is rather anxious at not having picked up the Trades so soon as he had expected. He now much regrets not having taken more coal and provisions on board, as he fears that the voyage may be unduly prolonged. We had quite a serious consultation to-day with the head-steward on the subject of ways and means, for the strictest economy must be practised as to food and water, and the most must be made of our coal. Oh for another twenty-five tons in reserve!

More Bad Weather

More Bad Weather

You may imagine what the heat has been during the last few weeks, when, with the thermometer standing at 80° to-day,221 people found it so chilly that they could not even wait until to-morrow to get out their warm clothes!

Monday, April 25th.—Fine and hot, with, alas! no wind. Ceased steaming for a brief space, but, as we made no progress, resumed after twenty minutes' pause. At noon we had come only eight miles under sail and 158 under steam, and were in lat. 13° 58´ S., and long. 114° 52´ E. The afternoon was showery, and hopes were entertained of a change of wind. A little breeze—a very little one—came out of the squalls, and we ceased steaming about six o'clock.

Tuesday, April 26th.—A breeze sprang up in the course of the night, and we ceased steaming at 8 a.m. In the shade, and in a draught, the thermometer stood at 77°. Everybody was—or at least many were—crying out for blankets and warmer clothing. The breeze increased almost to a gale, and we were close-hauled, with a heavy swell, which made us all very uncomfortable.

Wednesday, April 27th.—At 4 a.m. went on deck with Tom. Weather much finer and wind fairer. We must hope that yesterday's curious little moon may have changed our luck. All day it continued finer, and in the afternoon the wind freshened, and shifted a point or two for the better, sending us along, at higher speed and right on our course; so that we must not grumble, though the motion was still most unpleasant.

Thursday, April 28th.—I have been suffering much from neuralgia, and last night could not sleep at all, so that although this was really a lovely day I was unable to enjoy its pleasant beauty. At noon we had come 148 miles under sail, and were in lat. 18° 36´ S., long. 109° 26´ E. There was no variation in the compass to-day, this being one of the spots in the world where a similar state of things is observable.

At 5.30 p.m. we had the third nautical entertainment of the present voyage, which was quite as varied and successful as usual. Mr. Pemberton's recitation from Tennyson, and Tab's222 humorous account of Father Neptune's visit to the 'Sunbeam,' were the novelties on this occasion. There were also some excellent songs by the crew, a pretty ballad by Muriel, and a reading by Tom; Mabelle being as usual the backbone and leader of the whole affair. I managed to sit through it, though in great pain, but was obliged to go to bed directly after.

Friday, April 29th.—The weather is now really lovely. Painting and varnishing are still the order of the day. At noon we had sailed 143 miles, and were in lat. 20° 40´ S., long. 107° 52´ E. Again there was practically no variation in the compass, and if we only go far enough we shall soon have an extra day in one of our weeks!

Saturday, April 30th.—After a very bad night, during which I suffered agonies from neuralgia, I woke feeling somewhat better. We are now bowling along before a brisk trade-wind, which produces a certain amount of motion, though the vessel is fairly steady on the whole. At noon we had sailed 162 miles, and were in lat. 22° 32´ S., long. 105° 53´ E. The wind freshened in the afternoon as usual, but died away slightly during the night, which was beautifully clear and starlit. Everybody is full of spirits, and I hear cheery voices on deck with the least little bit of envy, I fear, as I lie in my bed below.

Sunday, May 1st.—The merry month of May does not commence very auspiciously, with a dirty grey sky, a still dirtier grey sea flopping up on our weather bow, and half a gale blowing. Fortunately it is from the right direction, and we make good progress.

I was able to attend the Litany at 11.30, and evening service at 4. At noon we had sailed 153 miles, and were in lat. 24° 39´ S., long. 104° 14´ E., and were fairly out of the tropics. In fact, everybody is now grumbling at the cold, and all the animals and birds look miserable, although the thermometer still stands at 69° in the shade. Perhaps the fresh223 breeze makes us so chilly, though it does not affect the thermometer.

Topmast Stunsails Topmast Stunsails

Monday, May 2nd.—The weather is finer, though it still keeps squally; but the wind is baffling, and we were sailing a good deal out of our course during the night. At noon we were in lat. 26° 44´ S., long. 103° 50´ E. I managed to go to the deck-house to-day for lunch, and remained on deck a little afterwards. Just before sunset we saw several sea-birds, and a splendid albatross with a magnificent spread of wing. It was wonderful to watch its quick turns and graceful skimming flight, so swift, and yet with hardly any perceptible movement.

Tuesday, May 3rd.—A fine day, very smooth, almost calm. Carried away the strop of the mizen-topsail-sheet block and rove new sheets. At noon we had sailed 140 miles, and were in lat. 28° 54´ S., long. 103° 12´ E.

At 2.30 a large fish was observed close to the vessel. He was from twenty to thirty feet long, and must have been either224 a white whale or a shark swimming on his back, and so snowy white as to make the sea, which was of a beautiful clear ultramarine blue, look pale green above him, like water over a coral reef. The creature did not rise above the surface, so we had not a good view of him, and he gave no sign of a disposition to 'blow,' though we watched him for more than half an hour. This makes me think that he must have been a shark, and not a whale, as the others assumed.

At 4 p.m. the fires were lighted in order to enable us to get within the influence of the true west wind, for we had reached the edge of the trades. About 6 p.m. we commenced steaming.

Wednesday, May 4th.—A fine day, with a moderate sea and a little imaginary breeze. At noon we had come eighty-six miles under steam and forty under sail, and were in lat. 30° 24´ S., long. 124° 26´ E. The temperature at noon in the shade was 65°, which we found very cold.

At 4 p.m. we saw a steamer hull down. In about an hour we had approached each other sufficiently close to enable us to ascertain that she was the 'Liguria,' one of the Orient Line, bound for Adelaide. We exchanged a little conversation with signal flags, and, having mutually wished each other a pleasant voyage, parted company. This was the first ship seen since leaving Macassar. The evening bitterly cold.

We have just seen a splendid lunar rainbow, and I suspect it forebodes a good deal more wind than we have lately had. It was perfect in shape, and the brilliant prismatic colours were most distinctly marked. I never saw such a rainbow, except as the precursor of a circular storm. I only hope that, should we encounter such a gale now, we may get into the right corner of it, and that it will be travelling in the right direction. I wish it would come in time to run up our weekly average to a thousand miles by midday.

Effect of a Squall

Effect of a Squall

Thursday, May 5th.—At 5 a.m. I was awakened by being nearly washed out of bed on one side and by a deluge of water225 coming into the cabin on the other. A squall had struck us, and we were tearing along with the lee rail under water, the rain meanwhile pouring down in torrents. The squall soon passed over, but there was every appearance of the wind increasing, though the barometer still stood high. Squall followed squall in quick succession, the wind increasing in force, and the sea rapidly rising. It soon became plain that we were in for a gale of some kind, and a very little later it became226 equally evident that, in accordance with the law of storms, we must be in the north-west quadrant of a circular storm, the centre of the disturbance being somewhere to the south-east. Sails were furled, others were reefed, and all was made fairly snug.

At noon we had run 136 miles to the north-east since the early morning, but we had not quite reached our estimated weekly average of a thousand miles. At noon we were in lat. 31° 29´ S., long. 105° 48´ E., with Cape Entrecasteaux 546 miles distant. The barometer stood at 30·10, and the temperature fell to 60°.

Several times during the morning the lee cutter had been in imminent danger of being lifted right out of the davits and carried away. About two o'clock the topmasts were struck; an hour later the skylights were covered over with tarpaulin, and a good deal of battening down took place on deck. Below, the stewards were employed in tautening up things which had been allowed to get rather slack during the long spell of smooth weather which we have had of late, nothing like a storm having been encountered for weeks, or indeed months.

Before dusk the lee cutter was got in-board, more reefs were taken in, all was made snug on deck, and I might say stuffy below. Shortly after this was accomplished we sailed out of the influence of the storm, the centre travelling quickly away to the south-east of us. Thereupon we shook out one or two reefs and set a mizen trysail to prevent the fine weather lops coming on board; for the sea was beginning to go faster than the wind, and one or two big beads of spray found their way on deck, one of which, much to their amusement, drenched the children completely. The glass continued to rise, and the weather improved throughout the night.

Friday, May 6th.—I was indeed delighted when, at dawn,227 it was thought safe to let us have a little light and air down below. Soon the sun rose, and all became bright and beautiful once more, though the air felt extremely chilly. We were now well on our course, but sailing pretty close to the wind, and therefore only doing about five or six knots. Continual squalls struck us throughout the day, and the sea was very lumpy from the effects of yesterday's gale, though the wind had almost completely subsided. What there was of it gradually headed us in the course of the afternoon, which did not tend to make things more comfortable; though the children at any rate did not seem to mind it, for they have entirely got over their slight sea-sickness. At noon we had sailed 138 miles, and were in lat. 32° 28´ N., long. 108° 6´ E.; the barometer stood at 30·10, and the temperature was still 60°.



Sunday, May 8th.—Woke early, only to hear that the wind had changed; but it proved a lovely morning, though the sky was covered with fleeting clouds, which made it difficult for the navigators to get the sun. We had the Litany at 11.30, and at noon were in lat. 34° 47´ S., long. 113° 54´ E., having run 201 miles. The temperature had risen to 63°, and the barometer stood at 30·19.

Tom has been deeply immersed in calculations all this afternoon, the best of the three chronometers on board, by Dent, having behaved in a very erratic manner since we got into a cooler temperature. On the other hand, the chronometer of Brockbank & Atkins, which has hitherto been regarded as not quite so reliable, is making up for past shortcomings by a spell of good conduct. Under these circumstances, it is difficult to know which to depend upon, and Tom is consequently somewhat anxious about his landfall. The weather has been so squally and overcast that no really good sights have been obtained all day.

At noon we had only come 194 miles by dead-reckoning. Observation proved that we had been helped onwards by a228 favouring current, and had really come 201 miles. We had evening service at 4.30 p.m. During the afternoon we saw many more sea-birds, and several albatrosses. It was a fine evening, the wind having dropped rather light. In the middle watch, however, it became squally.


Fauna, W. Australia

Fauna, W. Australia



Monday, May 9th.—At 3 a.m. carried away the clew of the mainsail, and at 7 a.m. set more sail. At 10 a.m. we made West Cape Howe, Western Australia, our first land since leaving the Allas Strait. It was with great joy and relief, as well as with, I think, pardonable pride in Tom's skill as a navigator, that I went on deck to see these rock-bound shores. It was certainly a good landfall, especially considering the230 difficulties which we had met with on account of the chronometers. The instrument which for years has been considered the most trustworthy suddenly changed its rate, and has been losing three seconds in the twenty-four hours. The navigators have been taking great pains. Observations have been frequent. Fifteen sights were taken daily, in three sets of five at three different periods.

Tom's estimated average run of 1,000 knots per week under sail has come out pretty well, and my own daily estimates of the run have been also surprisingly near the mark. In fact, Tom thinks them rather wonderful, considering that they have been arrived at simply by watching and thinking of the vessel's ways all day and part of the night, and often without asking any questions.

At 11 a.m. we lowered the mainsail and raised the funnel. At noon we had run 190 miles, and were half a mile to the northward of Eclipse Island, the barometer standing at 30·19, and the thermometer at 59°. At one o'clock we passed inside Vancouver's Ledge. The coast seemed fine and bold, the granite rocks looking like snow on the summit of the cliffs, at the foot of which the fleecy rollers were breaking in a fringe of pale green sea, whilst on the other side the water remained of a magnificent deep ultramarine colour.

About two o'clock we rounded Bald Head, soon after which the harbour-master of King George Sound and a pilot came on board, and were the first to welcome us to Western Australia. Over the lowland on one side we could see a P. & O. steamer, with the Blue Peter flying. Accordingly we sealed up all our mails and hurried them off, having previously hoisted the signal to ask if they could be received. By four o'clock we were at anchor in King George Sound, which reminded us much of Pictou in Nova Scotia.

Albany is a clean-looking little town, scarcely more than a village, built on the shore of the bay, and containing some231 2,000 inhabitants. We were soon in the gig, on the way to the P. & O. steamer 'Shannon' to see our old friend Captain Murray. After looking round the familiar decks, and having tea on board, we exchanged good wishes for a fair voyage, and rowed ashore, landing on a long wooden pier.

Carriages are not to be hired in Albany, but we found an obliging carter, who had come to fetch hay from the wharf, and who consented to carry me, instead of a bundle of hay, up to the house of Mr. Loftie, the Government Resident. We have decided to remain a week in order to give me a chance of recruiting; besides which the 'Sunbeam' needs a little painting and touching-up to make her look smart again after all the hard work and buffetings she has gone through.

Most of the party stayed on shore to dinner, for the kitchen-range on board the 'Sunbeam' has got rather damaged by the knocking about of the last few days. I went back, however, in my primitive conveyance as far as the end of the pier, and then returned straight on board, feeling very tired with even so short an expedition. In the course of the afternoon a large sackful of letters and newspapers from England was delivered on board, much to our delight.

Tuesday, May 10th.—A busy morning with letters and telegrams. Dogs are not allowed to land in any part of Australia until they have performed six months' quarantine, but I was able to take mine ashore at Quarantine Island, which we found without much difficulty with the aid of a chart. A little before one o'clock we landed at the pier, where Mr. Loftie met us, and drove us to the Residency to lunch. It was a great treat to taste fresh bread and butter and cream once more, especially to me, for these are among the few things I am able to eat. After lunch several ladies and gentlemen came to call on us.

I was sorry to hear that a terrible epidemic of typhoid fever seems to be ravaging this little town. Built as it is on232 the side of a hill overlooking the sea, and with a deliciously invigorating air always blowing, Albany ought to be the most perfect sanatorium in the world. Later in the afternoon I went for a drive with Mrs. Loftie all round the place, seeing the church, schools, and new town hall, as well as the best and worst parts of the town. It was no longer a mystery why the place should be unhealthy, for the water-supply seems very bad, although the hills above abound with pure springs. The drainage from stables, farm-buildings, poultry yards, and various detached houses apparently has been so arranged as to fall into the wells which supply each house. The effect of this fatal mistake can easily be imagined, and it is sad to hear of the valuable young lives that have been cut off in their prime by this terrible illness.

In the course of our drive we passed near an encampment of aborigines, but did not see any of the people themselves. We also passed several large heaps of whales' bones, collected, in the days when whales were numerous here, by a German, with the intention of burning or grinding them into manure. Formerly this part of the coast used to be a good ground for whalers, and there were always five or six vessels in or out of the harbour all the year round. But the crews, with their usual shortsightedness, not content with killing their prey in the ordinary manner, took to blowing them up with dynamite, the result being that they killed more than they could deal with, and frightened the remainder away.

The steward's report on the resources of the place from a marketing point of view is more curious than encouraging. There is no fresh butter nor milk to be had, except through the kindness of a few private individuals. Mutton abounds, but there is very little beef or veal. Good York hams are to be procured from England only. Fruit and vegetables are brought down from Perth or come over from Adelaide, and the most eatable salt butter is brought from Melbourne.233

Kingia Kingia

Wednesday, May the 11th.—It had been settled that to-day should be devoted to an excursion to the forests which are now being opened up by the new line of railway in course of construction. The special train of ballast-trucks which had been provided for us was to have started at ten o'clock, soon after which hour we landed, some delay having been caused at the last moment by the receipt of a message requesting us to send ashore every rug we possessed, in order to make the truck in which we were to travel as comfortable as possible. The required wraps and furs had accordingly to be got up from the hold, where they had lain for months past. On landing we found a pleasant party assembled to receive us, including the engineer of the new line, Mr. Stewart, and his wife. In due course we were all seated on two long planks, back to back, in open trucks, behind an engine and tender. We commenced our journey by slowly passing the enclosures, gardens, and courts adjoining the houses of the town. About three-quarters of a mile out of Albany we stopped to water the engine at a primitive trough in a cutting about twelve feet deep—the deepest on234 the whole line, which in the main is laid over a surface as flat as a pancake.

The morning was simply perfect—one of those days which make mere existence a pleasure; the air felt light and invigorating, the sun was bright and warm; all seemed so different from the damp muggy air or fierce burning sunshine of which we have had so much experience lately.

Our route lay over a sort of moorland, sprinkled with rare ericas such as we carefully preserve in greenhouses at home. Other flowers there were, too, in abundance, and of many kinds, including scarlet bottle-brushes, large white epacris, and mimosa covered with yellow balls of blossom. The trees seemed to consist chiefly of white gum, peppermint, and banksias, and all looked rather ragged and untidy. One great feature of the vegetation was what are called the 'black-boys' (Xanthorrhea), somewhat resembling tree-ferns, with a huge black pineapple stem, at the top of which grows a bushy tuft of grass-like foliage.

About nine miles out we came to a broad stretch of water known by the very prosaic name of 'Nine-mile Lake.' It looked lovely this bright morning, with the opposite hills and a fine group of blue gum-trees sharply mirrored in its glassy surface. The train stopped for a few minutes to enable us to admire the view and to take some photographs. In the course of another mile or so we quitted the main line to Perth, and proceeded along a branch line leading into the heart of the forest. The undergrowth was nowhere very thick, and where it had been cleared by burning, fine grass had sprung up in its place. As we left the moorland and got into the real forest of grand gum-trees the scene became most striking. The massive stems of many of the eucalypti were between thirty and forty feet in circumference and over a hundred feet in height. The glimpses which we caught between these tall trees of Torbay, with the waves breaking in huge rollers on235 the shore or in angry surf against the steep cliffs of Eclipse Island, were quite fascinating.

We steamed slowly along the lightly ballasted line—only laid yesterday, and over which no engine has yet travelled—two men running on in front to tap the rails and joints, and to see that all was safe. About three-quarters of a mile of rail is laid each day. It is being built on what is called the land-grant system; that is to say, for every mile completed the Government give the railway company 6,000 square acres of land, to be chosen at the completion of the line by the company's agent, the Government reserving to themselves the right of alternate frontage to the railway. The distance from Albany to Beverly (a town standing about 120 miles equidistant from Perth and Fremantle, which will be the terminus of the line, at any rate for the present) is 220 miles. The line was commenced and should have been carried on from both ends, but the contractors find it much cheaper to work only from the Albany end. It ought to be a very cheap line, for it requires scarcely any earthworks and no rock-cuttings or bridges, the soil being loose and gravelly with a granite foundation. There are few rivers to cross; and timber for the sleepers is to be had in abundance, and of the best quality, from the trees which must necessarily be cut down to clear the forest for the passage of the line. The entire road was to have been completed in three years from the time of commencement; but it will probably be finished in about two, as a good deal of the work is already done.

Black-Boys Black-Boys

We were taken by another branch line to some saw-mills, where the sleepers for the railway are prepared. Here some of us got into a light American buggy drawn by a fine strong pair of cart-horses, in which conveyance we took our first drive through the bush. To me it seemed rather rough work, for in many places there was no track at all, while in others the road was obstructed by 'black-boys' and by innumerable236 tree-stumps, which the horses avoided or stepped over most cleverly. Still the wheels could not be expected to show quite so much intelligence, and we consequently suffered frequent and violent jolts. From the driver—a pleasant, well-informed man—I learnt a good deal respecting the men employed on the line. There are about 130 hands, living up here in the forest, engaged in hewing down, sawing, and transporting trees. These, with the women and children accompanying them, form a population of 200 souls suddenly established in the depths of a virgin forest. They have a school, and a schoolmaster who charges two shillings a week per head for schooling, and has fourteen pupils. He was dressed like a gentleman, but earns less than the labourers, who get ten shillings a day, or 3l. a week, the best hands being paid regularly under all conditions of weather, and only the inferior labourers receiving their wages for the time during which they are actually at work. There are four fine teams of Australian-bred horses, and a spare pair for road or bush work. Communi237cation with Albany, the base of operations, is of course maintained by means of the line, some of the navvies even coming from and returning thither each day in the trucks. The married men who live in the forest have nice little three-roomed cottages, and those I went into were neatly papered and furnished, and looked delightfully clean and tidy. The single men generally live in a sort of tent with permanent walls of brick or wood, and mess at a boarding-house for eighteen shillings a week. This seems a good deal for a labourer to pay for food alone, but it really means five good meals a day. The little colony has a butcher attached to it, from whom meat of the finest quality may be purchased at sixpence per pound, all but the prime parts being thrown away.

The rest of the party having walked up the line, I waited for them at the house of the District Manager, who with his wife received me most hospitably. On the walls of the apartment I was interested to notice the portraits of some of those who had been connected with my father-in-law in business, and who are now in the employ of Messrs. Miller, the contractors for this line.

As soon as Mr. Stewart and the rest of the party had joined us, we proceeded to the saw-mills and watched some great logs of jarrah being cut into sleepers. There were no elephants to assist in the operation as in Burmah, so that all the work had to be done by steam, with a little help from men and horses. Quantities of fragrant rose-coloured sawdust, used for stable litter, were lying about. Tons of wood not large enough for sleepers were being burned in order to get rid of it. It seemed a terribly wasteful proceeding, but there was more material than was wanted, and space after all was the great thing needed.

From the saw-mills we penetrated further into the forest, in order to see more large trees cut down, hewn into logs, and238 dragged away. Some of the giants of the forest were really magnificent. We followed a double team of sixteen horses drawing a timber-cart composed of one long thick pole between two enormous wheels some seven or eight feet in diameter. Above these wheels a very strong iron arch is fastened, provided with heavy chains, by means of which and with the aid of an iron crowbar, used as a lever, almost any weight of timber can be raised from the ground. The apparatus is called a 'jinka.' The men engaged in the work sit upon the pole with the greatest sangfroid as it goes bumping and crashing through the forest, striking up against big trees, or knocking down small ones; sometimes one wheel and sometimes another high on the top of a stump, or sometimes both wheels firmly fixed in one of the numerous deep holes. The scene was altogether most picturesque, as well as interesting; and it must be remembered that the top of each stump was larger than the surface of a large dining-table. The trees were from eighty to one hundred feet in height, all their branches springing from near the summit, so that the shadows cast were quite different from those one is accustomed to see in an ordinary wood. The day was brilliant, the sun shining brightly, and the blue sky relieved by a few white fleecy clouds moving softly before a gentle air. The timber-cutters were of fine physique, with brawny limbs and sunburnt faces.

We watched the adventures of one enormous log. A team of fourteen horses were yoked to a strong chain attached by large hooks to a trunk of such vast proportions that it seemed as if all the king's horses and all the king's men could never make it stir an inch. Twice the effort was made, and twice it failed. First, the hooks slipped off the end, and as the horses were pulling and tugging with all their might, directly the weight was removed away they went helter-skelter down the steep hill, up which they had just climbed with so much difficulty, being utterly unable to stop themselves on the steep slippery239 ground. Next time the chain broke as the horses were straining every muscle, and the same tantalising process was repeated with even more striking effect. The whole of the long team of the fifteen horses (for they had added another this time) became hopelessly entangled, two of the poor animals either falling or getting hampered and knocked down in their headlong gallop. The third time the log was got into position; the 'jinka,' with only one horse attached to it, was brought close, the pole was lowered, and the levers applied with such force that they not only raised the log but very nearly the unfortunate horse also into the air. When all was satisfactorily arranged, the other horses were attached to the jinka, and away they all went merrily down the hill, but only to come into collision with a big tree. The horses had again to be taken out, and harnessed this time to the other end of the jinka, so as to pull it in the opposite direction. At last the big log reached the saw-mills in safety, about the same time as we got there ourselves. We visited the village shop, which appeared to be well supplied with useful stores, and also the butcher's and carpenter's shops, and the smithy. They have never seen a clergyman or doctor up here, but by railway there is easy communication with the town if necessary. In the course of our rambles we heard the disheartening intelligence that, owing to some misunderstanding, our train had already gone back to Albany, taking with it not only our luncheon, but all the wraps. We proceeded, however, to the trysting-place, only to be greeted by blank looks of disappointment as each new arrival received the unpleasant news that the report of the train's erratic proceeding was only too well founded. Everybody was tired, cold, and hungry, and the conversation naturally languished. At last Mr. Stewart, who had been down the line to reconnoitre, brought back the welcome news that the distant snort of the engine could be heard. In due course it arrived, and the baskets and boxes containing the240 much-desired food were transferred from the truck to the bank and quickly unpacked by willing hands. Never, I am sure, was a luncheon more thoroughly appreciated than this in the depths of an Australian forest. The wraps, too, were most acceptable, for the air became keen directly after the early sunset. When we started on our return journey, taking back two truck-loads of workmen with us, it really seemed bitterly cold. Care had also to be taken to shelter ourselves from the shower of sparks from the wood fire of the engine, which flew and streamed out behind us like the tail of a rocket. We went back much more quickly than we had come, and stopped nowhere, except to take in a fresh supply of wood and water and to drop some of our passengers at their wayside residences.

Tab started off on horseback early this morning for Kendenup, a large station about forty miles inland, where we are to join him to-morrow, having been invited to stay for a day or two and judge for ourselves what station life is like. We accordingly sent all our luggage ashore to-night, in readiness for an early start in the morning.

Thursday, May 12th.—Half-past nine was the hour appointed for our departure, and soon afterwards we were all assembled on the pier, where we were met by a little group of friends who had come to see us off. Mr. Roach, the landlord of the 'White Hart,' was to drive us in a comfortable-looking light four-wheeled waggonette with a top to it, drawn by a pair of Government horses. The latter are generally used for carrying the mails or for the police service, but the Governor had telegraphed orders that they were to be lent to us for this expedition, as we could not have made it without them. Mabelle, Mr. des Graz, and Mr. Pemberton packed in behind, whilst I climbed up in front next the driver. There was a little difficulty at first in starting, but once that was overcome it was indeed a case of 'off.' We galloped four miles without stopping or upsetting, the one fact being perhaps241 quite as wonderful as the other. Up hill, down dale, round corners, over stumps, along rough roads, through heavy sand—on we went as hard as our horses could gallop. Fortunately there is not much traffic on the road, and during this mad career we only met two men walking and passed one cart.

About seven miles from Albany we had to climb a long steep incline, called Spearwood Hill, from the top of which we had a fine view over Albany, King George Sound, and the lighthouse on Breaksea Island. There were a great many flowers and a few trees quite unknown to us in the bush. Some of the blossoms were extremely pretty, but it was hopeless to think of stopping to gather them, for our horses were warranted not to start again under half an hour at least. They went at a good pace, however, passing another cart, and one colonist on horseback, very much encumbered with parcels, but not sufficiently so to prevent him from politely making room for us.

Chorkerup Lake Inn, our first change, fifteen miles from Albany, was reached in rather less than ninety minutes. It is a long, low, one-storeyed wooden building, but everything was scrupulously clean. In a few minutes the table was covered with a spotless cloth, on which fowls, home-cured bacon, mutton, home-made bread, potted butter, condensed milk, tea, Bass's beer, and sundry other articles of food and drink were temptingly displayed. We could not help regretting the absence of fresh milk and butter; and it does seem wonderful that where land is of comparatively little value, and where grass springs up in profusion the moment that land is cleared, people should not keep a cow or two, especially when the family comprises numerous small children, and there is a constant though scanty stream of passing travellers to provide for, whose number will be increased when the railway passes within a couple of miles of the inn.242

Just as we were starting I discovered that the old smith living close by had been engaged on one of my father-in-law's contracts in South Wales, and had worked for four years in the Victoria Docks in London. He was delighted to exchange greetings with us; and it was quite touching to hear his protestations that he 'did not want nothing at all, only just to shake hands,' which he did over and over again, assuring me of his conviction that our visit was 'certain to do a power of good to the colony.' I suppose he gave us credit for having inherited, or at all events profited by, some of my dear father-in-law's good qualities.

The next stage was a long and weary one of another fifteen miles, mostly through heavy sand. Luckily, we had rather a good pair of big black horses this time, which took us along well. It was a fine warm afternoon, like a September day in England; but the drive was uneventful, and even monotonous except for the numberless jolts. We only met one cart and passed two houses, one of which was uninhabited and falling into decay. We also passed a large iguana, a huge kind of lizard about two feet long, lying sunning himself on the road. The aborigines eat these creatures, and say they are very good; and I have heard that white people have also tried them successfully. Their eggs are delicious, and when roasted in hot embers taste just like baked custard. They lay from twenty to thirty in the large ant-heaps which one constantly meets with in the bush, and which when rifled, in January or February, yield a rich harvest of these eggs. A shrub very much like dogwood, with a lilac flower rather like a large thistle, but with the leaves turned back, was plentiful, and is a valuable product, horses being able to live upon it for many weeks without water, though it does not look especially succulent. We saw beautiful parrots of all colours flying across the road, besides magpies and 'break-of-day' birds, a species of magpie. Our driver was very obliging in pointing243 out everything of interest, including the Pongerup and Stirling Ranges in the blue distance.

At the end of the thirty-one miles we came to one of the advanced railway villages inhabited by the pioneers of civilisation. It was very like the one we visited yesterday; in fact, I suppose they are all similar, experience having taught that a certain style of arrangement is the most convenient.

A Breakdown in the Bush

A Breakdown in the Bush

A couple of miles further brought us—in two hours forty minutes from Chorkerup—in sight of a tidy little house and homestead standing in the midst of a small clearing, surrounded by haystacks and sheds, and really looking like a bit of the old country.

Right glad we all were to get out and stretch our weary limbs after the shaking and jolting of the last sixteen miles; and still more welcome was a cup of good tea with real cream, home-made bread, and fresh butter, offered with the greatest hospitality and kindness, in a nice old-fashioned dining-room.244 Everything was exquisitely clean, and nicely served. The sitting-room contained several books, and the bedrooms all looked comfortable. The outside of the house and the verandah were covered with woodbines, fuchsias, and Maréchal Niel roses, whilst the garden was full of pink and white oxalis and other flowers. I ought, in sheer gratitude, to add that the mistress of this pretty hostelry absolutely refused all payment, and indeed sent out her two nice daughters to gather some roses and other flowers for a nosegay for me.

If it had been difficult to reach this inn from the high road, it seemed ever so much more difficult to get away from it by quite another route. It was like leaving the palace of the Sleeping Beauty, so dense was the forest and so impossible to find the ancient track, already quite overgrown. A little perseverance, however, brought us once more to the main road, along which we bowled and jolted at a merry pace for about ten miles. We met four wagons, drawn by four horses each, and laden with sandal-wood, guided, or rather left to themselves, by a Chinaman. It was with great difficulty that we succeeded in passing the first three wagons, and in getting out of our way the fourth collided with a tree, which, I thought, must bring it to a standstill; but no: after prodigious exertion on the part of the horses, and a great straining of harness and knocking about of woodwork, it crashed slowly on, breaking the tree—which was a tolerably thick one—completely in two, and carrying part of it away.

At the end of the ten miles we again turned off the main road at a point where a solitary pillar-post and parcel-box stood by the wayside, and once more plunged into the intricacies of a by-track. Lucky it was that we had saved the daylight, for some of the holes were deep enough to have upset any trap, and there was a steep hill, which our driver seemed to view with great apprehension, though I do not fancy we should think much of it in East Sussex. Soon245 after this we came to a large homestead and farm, near which a number of sheep were folded. On the opposite bank stood a substantial-looking wooden house, surrounded by a verandah and by a clump of trees, in the middle of what might have been an English park, to judge from the grass and the fine timber; and after crossing a small creek we reached the hospitable door of Kendenup Station.



It had turned bitterly cold after leaving Mount Barker, and I realised the value of the warning which our Albany friends had given as to the treacherous character of the Australian climate at this time of year. In fact I felt thoroughly chilled, and quite too miserably ill to do justice to any of the many kindnesses prepared, except that of a blazing wood fire.

Tab seemed to have spent a pleasant morning riding through the bush after kangaroos, of which plenty had been seen, but none killed. The very beauty of the day interfered with the sport, for the air was so still and clear that the kangaroos heard and saw the hunters long before they could get within shot. After supper the gentlemen went out to hunt opossums by moonlight, and shot two, literally 'up a gum-tree.' Opossum-hunting does not seem great sport, for the poor little animals sit like cats on the branch of a tree, with their long tails hanging down, and are easily spied by a dog or a native.

Friday, May 13th.—It was a very cold night, the thermometer falling to freezing-point. Woke at six, to find a bright, clear, cold morning, with a sharp wind blowing from the south, which is of course the coldest quarter in this part of the world. At seven a delicious cup of tea was brought up, and at eight we breakfasted, the table being charmingly decorated with fresh flowers and fruit. Afterwards a stroll round the house, gardens, and orchard, and a gossip over the fire, occupied the early part of the morning very agreeably.

The difficulty of housekeeping here must be extreme. It246 is almost impossible to keep servants in the far-away bush; they all like to be near a town. I would earnestly advise everybody thinking of going to any out-of-the-way part of our colonies to learn to a certain extent how to do everything for himself or herself. Cooking, baking, and washing, besides making and mending, are duties which a woman may very likely have to undertake herself, or to teach an untrained servant to perform. I should be inclined to add to the list of desirable accomplishments riding, driving, and the art of shoeing and saddling a horse in case of emergency; for the distances from place to place are great, and the men are often all out on the run or in the bush.

About half-past nine Mr. Hassall took me for a drive round the station and clearing. We saw the remains of the old gold-workings, not two hundred yards from the house. Up to now they have been unprofitable, but hopes are entertained that, with better machinery for crushing the quartz, larger results may be obtained. At present the expense of working is so great that the gold is not found in paying quantities.

From the deserted gold-field we drove through some enclosed land where corn and 'straw-hay' had been grown, but had been given up because it did not pay. Then through more enclosures for cattle and sheep, and finally over some virgin land, across what might have been an English park if it had not looked so untidy from many of the trees having been 'rung'—an ugly but economical method of felling timber, by cutting a deep furrow round the bark so as to stop the circulation, and thus cause the tree to die. Then we crossed a now dried-up river, and climbed the opposite bank of a creek, to a point from which we had a lovely view of the distant Stirling Range.

I was interested to hear that, with the aid of a foreman from Suffolk, the system of rotation of crops had been tried here with great success, as far as production went. Never247 were such wheat and 'straw-hay' crops seen in the colony; but, after all, the farm did not pay, for flour from South Australia could be purchased cheaper; and as teams are constantly going into Albany with loads of sandal-wood and wool, the carriage out costs very little.

I was told that the land here only carries one sheep to ten acres. On these extensive sheep-walks good dogs are much wanted; but they are very rare, for the tendency of the present breed is to drive and harry the sheep too much. They have one good dog on the run here, who knows every patch of poison-plant between Kendenup and the grazing-ground, and barks round it, keeping the sheep off it, till the whole flock has safely passed. This poison-plant—of which there are several kinds, some more deadly than others—is the bane of the colony. They say that sheep born in the colony know it, and impart their knowledge to their lambs, but that all imported sheep eat it readily and die at once.

The homestead is a nice, large, comfortable place with plenty of room for man and beast, including any stray bachelors and other wayfarers, who claim hospitality almost as a right in these isolated localities. Adjoining the homestead is a well-stocked store, at which everything can be bought, from lollypops to suits of clothing, and from which the shepherds obtain most of their supplies. There are also enclosures for wild horses, which are numerous, and are occasionally hunted and captured. Last night two were brought into the station. Of course every accommodation is provided for the care and treatment of sheep in the various stages of their existence, including the means of washing and shearing them. An orchard and fruit-garden close by yield tons of fruit every year for the merest scratching of the soil. To obtain labour is the difficulty. The birds, especially parrots, are terrible enemies to the fruit-crops. In the early morning one may see a tree laden with splendid fruit just ready to be gathered, and in an248 hour later the whole may be on the ground—not eaten, but simply thrown down, bruised and spoilt, by the birds. Although the thermometer fell to freezing-point last night, we had pomegranates at dessert which had been grown and ripened in the open air. Oranges and lemons grow well, and vines flourish, wine-making having been already tried with fair success in Western Australia.

Arrangements had been made for a kangaroo-hunt to-morrow. I should dearly like to see one; but it is impossible to remain for it, as not only is Tom expecting us to return, but I feel much too weak and ill to think of riding. It was therefore settled that Mabelle, Tab, and Mr. Pemberton should stay, and Mr. des Graz and I return to Albany. A black boy was despatched on horseback to Mount Barker with sundry telegrams to make arrangements for staying at Albany over next Monday night, when it is proposed to give a ball in our honour. Posts are so few and far between in Western Australia, and indeed in many other parts of the continent, that telegrams generally take the place of letters. The cost of a message is very moderate within the limits of each colony, but terribly dear when once those limits are passed.

At twelve o'clock the waggonette came to the door, and I resumed my place in front, well wrapped up, for it was raining hard. We left the buggy to bring on the others to-morrow, and started on our way, full of regret at having to leave so soon, and of gratitude for the kindness and hospitality we had received.

Just before leaving, we had an opportunity of seeing a native lad throw a boomerang—or kylie, as they are called here. I could not have believed that a piece of wood could have looked and behaved so exactly like a bird, quivering, turning, flying, hovering, and swooping, with many changes of pace and direction, and finally alighting close to the thrower's feet.249

The horses were tired, and our progress was therefore somewhat slow as far as Mount Barker, where Mrs. Cooper—the hostess—again received us cordially, quickly lighted a fire, and made me comfortable in front of it. Then she produced a regular country lunch, ending with a grape tart, plenty of thick cream, and splendid apples and pears. I gave her some books in remembrance of our little visit; and she finally sent me away rested and refreshed, with a present of fresh butter and flowers.

Boomerangs, or Kylies

Boomerangs or Kylies

It was nearly dark by the time we left Chorkerup—indeed, scarcely light enough to distinguish the kind landlady's white apron as she ran out to greet us. Such a warm welcome as she gave us! and such a good meal of poached eggs, cutlets, bacon, and all sorts of good things, in spite of our protests that we wanted only a cup of tea! Her children had gathered me a beautiful nosegay of250 bush flowers, and she put up some bunches of 'everlastings,' for which this part of the world is famous, and which are said to keep fresh for years.

I settled down as best I could in the back of the waggonette before the horses were put in, so as to be quite ready for the actual start, which was a work of time and difficulty; for the horses at first absolutely refused to move forward, though they kept alternately rearing, kicking, plunging, and standing stubbornly still. At the end of half an hour's efforts our coachman, who had been exhorted to stick tight in expectation of a flying start, gave up the attempt, and the horses were removed. After some discussion the least tired of the past pair and the least wicked of the present were put in, and off we went, with a jerk and a jolt, and many injunctions to stick to the road. This was easier said than done; for when we came to the camp-fires of the lumberers whom I had seen at work yesterday, the glare frightened our horses, and caused them to swerve off the road, and dash into the bush by the side. This happened more than once; but even on the road itself the jerks and jolts were so bad that we were forced to go slowly, so that we only reached Albany at half-past eight instead of at six o'clock, and found everybody very anxious about us. Tom and Baby waited on the pier until past seven, when cold and hunger drove them back to the yacht.

Saturday, May 14th.—When I awoke this morning the fever and ague from which I had been suffering had all disappeared, and, though still very tired, I felt decidedly better for the change and the bush life. I am convinced there is nothing like a land journey to restore a sea-sick person after a voyage. The news which greeted me on arriving last night had not been cheering, for several of our men were ill with feverish colds.


Getting under way

Getting under way



Saturday, May 14th.—It was a cold showery morning when we landed, to photograph a party of natives, and see them throw boomerangs and spears. They were the most miserable-looking objects I ever beheld; rather like Fuegians. The group consisted of two men, dressed partly in tattered European clothes, and partly in dirty, greasy kangaroo-skins heaped one on the top of another, and two women in equally disreputable costumes. One of the latter had a piccaninny hung behind her in an opossum-skin, the little hairy head252 and bright shining eyes of the child peeping out from its shelter in the quaintest manner. Although the poor creatures were all so ugly, we did our best to take some photographs of them, using a pile of sandal-wood bags as a background. Then we drove up to the cricket-ground to see them throw their boomerangs or kylies, which they did very cleverly. One of the kylies was broken against a tree, but most of the others flew with unerring precision. The spears were thrown from a flat oval piece of wood, in size and shape something like the blade of a paddle, which sent them forward with great accuracy and velocity. The natives have formed a small encampment not far from here, where they live in the most primitive fashion, very dirty, and quite harmless. Their nearest neighbour tells me that they come daily to her house for water and scraps, but that they never attempt to steal anything or cause her any annoyance.

We next visited two curio shops, kept by Webb and Gardiner. Webb is rather a clever naturalist, and corresponds with Dr. Hooker; he sent a good many botanical specimens from this neighbourhood to the Colonial Exhibition last year. There were some beautiful feathers of the male and female cockatoo, a few stuffed birds, and a good many weapons, some of which we bought. At Gardiner's we found more native weapons, which he buys in the bush and then sets the natives to work to repair. Fortunately for us, he had only recently returned from one of his expeditions, and we were therefore able to pick up some of the specimens in the condition in which he had found them, all rough and broken from the effects of recent fights. The spear-heads and teeth are generally made of flint or granite, or old bottle-glass, fastened to the shaft with kangaroo sinews and the gum of the 'black-boy.' The tomahawks have double edges fastened on in the same manner. The knives are like one-sided spear-heads, with a short handle attached. The flat paddle-shaped pieces of wood by means of253 which they throw their spears are called womaras. There were also numerous specimens of kylies, and curious message-sticks about ten or twelve inches long, made from the thigh-bone of the kangaroo, and sharply pointed at one end. A sort of hieroglyph or rude writing is scratched upon them, and they are used to convey messages from one place to another. We bought some opossum-skins and rugs of various sorts, and admired the beautiful live birds, including parrots and cockatoos.

From three to five o'clock I was 'at home' on board the 'Sunbeam.' The afternoon had improved, and was bright and sunny. I think our guests were pleased with their visit.

Tab, Mabelle, and Mr. Pemberton returned this afternoon. They seemed to have had a most enjoyable though fatiguing day, having breakfasted at seven o'clock, and started before eight. They saw some twenty or thirty kangaroos, of which they only killed three. At half-past one they set out for Albany, and drove the forty-two miles, through Mount Barker and Chorkerup. Mabelle brought me back some bush flowers, very beautiful and interesting when closely examined, especially the blue holly, a plant with a holly-like leaf and a blue pea-shaped flower. Two or three varieties of blue erica, tiny heaths, and epacris were also very pretty. It is curious how all, even the smallest of the bush flowers, run to bottle-brush just as readily as the great banksias and eucalypti, and what strange little bottle-brushy appendages they all have.

An Aboriginal

An Aboriginal

Mabelle also brought some beautiful black cockatoos' feathers. Those of the male bird have a band of brilliant scarlet right across them, which looks so artificial that when a fan made of these feathers was sent lately to New Zealand nobody would believe that it had not been cleverly painted. The female bird has a light yellow and fawn-coloured tail, more delicate in colour though not so brilliant as her mate's plumage. We saw a great flight of black cockatoos yesterday.254 These seemed to have white in their tails instead of red. Cockatoos are very affectionate and loyal to one another—a fact of which those who kill or capture them take advantage; for if they succeed in wounding a bird they tie it up in a tree, where, so long as it continues to cry, not one of its companions will leave it, but will hover around, allowing themselves to be shot rather than desert a comrade. It is a great pity these handsome birds devour the grain so terribly that settlers are255 obliged to wage a war of extermination against them. Very different is the behaviour under similar circumstances of the kangaroo, in whom I have in consequence lost much of my interest. When hard pressed the doe will take her offspring out of her pouch and fling it to the dogs to gain time for her own escape. The meat of the joeys, as the young ones are called, is by far the best, and tastes something like hare, though it is rather tough and stringy. The flesh of the older animals is more like that of red deer. Both require to be well basted, and eaten with red currant jelly, to make them at all palatable.

Sunday, May 15th.—Such a lovely day—more like an ideal May morning in England than an Australian winter's day. We attended service in a picturesque ivy-covered edifice.

After lunch a great many workpeople and others came on board, by invitation, to see the yacht, as it was impossible for them to visit it on any other day. The blue waters of the Sound looked quite gay with the little flotilla of boats coming and going.

At three o'clock we all went ashore in the steam-launch, most of the party intending to climb up the hill to the signal-station to look at the view. My own destination was Quarantine Island, where I sat on the sands in the delicious sunshine, while the dogs ran about and the children gathered flowers. It seems a nice, healthy, breezy little place, with a well-planned lazaretto, capable of accommodating a small number of invalids, and a convenient cottage for the custodian and his wife, whom we could see out in their boat fishing. While we were on shore, the men in our boat, with the assistance of two boathooks, but even then with considerable difficulty, captured an octopus about three feet across; a horrid-looking monster, which tried to cling to everything near with its round suckers and long feelers.

Monday, May 16th.—Tom took me ashore to enable me256 to keep a driving engagement; but he was suffering from a chill, and felt very unwell. Although anxious to try the efficacy of his universal panacea—exercise—he was ultimately obliged to abandon the experiment and to return on board.

I enjoyed my drive immensely, for it was a bright sunny morning, with a soft air blowing. The buggy was comfortable; the horses went well; and Mr. Young, who drove me, was full of interesting information. After passing the cemeteries, we went by a rough road through the bush, where much of the vegetation was new and strange. Then we crossed the extreme end of a large fresh-water lake, and shortly afterwards emerged from the bush on to the shore of a fine bay, called Middleton Beach, along the edge of which, by the side of the curling breakers, we drove over a firm white sand, admiring the effect of the dark blue sea, changing to a delicate pale green before breaking on the shore. On the way back I was shown a small corrugated iron house, with an outbuilding attached, in the middle of a considerable clearing, the owner of which proposes to supply the town of Albany with garden and dairy produce. I wish him every success, and hope that he will include eggs and poultry in his scheme; for the only eggs which we have been able to procure have been six in number, and have cost threepence each. These, too, were only supplied as a special favour, because I was 'sick.'

Tom dragged himself on shore again in the afternoon, but did not remain long, as we had to receive more visitors, who had been prevented from coming yesterday.

At seven o'clock Mr. and Mrs. Loftie and Mr. Young came to dinner, and Tom being too ill to appear, I had to do my best to entertain them. After dinner, having seen the invalids made as comfortable as possible, we started, well wrapped up—for it was bitterly cold—for the dance at the Court-House, which is built on so steep a hill that, although the building257 is three storeys high towards the sea, yet by entering at the back the level of the top storey is at once reached. The dancing had just begun, and it proved a most cheery little ball. All present were hearty, kindly, and genial.

The Port Watch

The Port Watch

Tuesday, May 17th.—A lovely morning, perfectly calm. Tom much better, and anxious to be off. Mails and farewell messages were accordingly sent on shore, and Mr. Loftie came off with parting words of kindness and farewell, and laden with flowers. Precisely at eleven o'clock, with signals of 'Good-bye' and 'Thanks' hoisted at the main, we steamed out of the snug harbour where we have passed such a pleasant week and have received so much kindness. The pilot soon258 quitted us, and we were once more on the broad ocean. The wind outside was dead ahead, and the heavy rollers tumbling in foreboded a still heavier swell as we got further away from the land. In fact, Tom more than once asked me if we had not better put back. As it was too rough to steam, a certain amount of snug sail was set; and, close-hauled, we steered as near our course as circumstances would permit.

There are a good many invalids on board among the crew and servants, the symptoms in each case being very similar. This morning the two maids, two stewards, and three of the men had more or less succumbed to 'malarial colds'—nothing serious, the doctor says, but very uncomfortable. It is quite certain that many more are now laid up than we ever had on the sick-list in the tropics; but the sudden change from heat to cold may of course account for this state of things.

Wednesday, May 18th.—The wind was rather more favourable; but, although close-hauled, we were nearly two and a half points off our course, the head-sea running very high. Although the air was warm I remained in my cabin all the morning, feeling wretched and uncomfortable. At noon we had run 110 miles—100 under steam and 10 under sail—and were in lat. 35° 44´ S., long. 119° 53´ E., Kangaroo Island being 820 miles distant. The total distance now accomplished since we left England is 9,236 miles under sail, and 7,982 under steam, making a total of 17,218 miles.

I was called upon deck once during the day to see a whale with a fin on its back. Gray, in his book on Western Australia, says that this kind of whale lives principally on the large phosphorescent medusæ. The evening was cold, as usual, and I was glad to go below early. Venus rose brilliantly, but so red that several on board thought it must be the port light of a ship astern; though how any vessel could have suddenly got there they could not make out. Soon after259wards shouts were heard on first seeing what Tom described as lamps of light or fireballs astern. These turned out to be the luminous medusæ which Gray speaks of, and which were much larger and more brilliant than any we had yet seen.

Thursday, May 19th.—Wind fair, but head-swell still continuing. I had a very busy morning below, writing journal and letters. At noon we had run 120 miles under sail, and were then in lat. 36° 12´ S., long. 122° 4´ E. In the afternoon we took some photographs of Tom in his R.N.A.V. uniform, the Guard of Honour, ourselves, the Court, &c., on the occasion of Neptune's visit when we crossed the line. Sundry unsuccessful attempts were made to photograph the animals, but they seemed to be suffering from a severe attack of the fidgets. To see 'Jenny Jenkins,' the monkey, in her new blue jumper with 'Sunbeam R.Y.S.,' embroidered by Mabelle, and 'Mr. Short,' the black-and-tan terrier, playing together, is really very pretty; they are so quick and agile in their movements that it is almost impossible to catch them. 'Mrs. Sharp,' the white toy terrier, in her new jersey, a confection of Muriel's, occasionally joins in the frolic; though her condescension is not much appreciated, for she is rather too quick with her teeth. The photograph of the Guard of Honour was spoiled by a passing whale, to which Tom suddenly drew everybody's attention by pointing to it with his drawn sword. The monster left a greasy wake behind him, as he swam lazily along, blowing slightly.

Towards evening the air became very cold, and the wind not quite so fair. A splendid sunset threw a lovely glow on the sails. Later on the sea continued to go down, and I was able to make my first appearance at dinner at sea for many a long day past, but only as a spectator even now.

Friday, May 20th.—Another fine clear day; but the horrid easterly swell is as bad as ever, and with such a light wind we seem to feel it more. A busy morning with journal and letters.260

At noon we had come 148 miles under sail, and Kangaroo Island was now 546 miles distant; we were in lat. 36° 25´ S., long. 125° 13´ E.

Saturday, May 21st.—A pouring wet morning, with every appearance of continued rain. Later on the weather cleared, though heavy squalls came up at intervals until noon, when it turned quite warm, bright, and sunny.

Running Down—Easting

Running Down—Easting

In the afternoon the wind freshened considerably, and our speed improved in proportion. The heavy head-swell having gone down, everyone on board felt more comfortable. Advantage was taken of the lull to get a few photographs of the engineers, cooks, and others. A nautical entertainment had been fixed for 6 p.m.; but unfortunately that hour was selected to gybe the ship, so that it was 6.30 before261 the entertainment commenced. There was but a small audience; which seemed a pity, for the performance was exceptionally good.

Cracking on

Cracking on

The wind continued to freshen, and by 11 p.m. we were tearing through the water before a fair breeze, but knocking about a good deal more than was pleasant.

Sunday, May 22nd.—From midnight until 6 a.m. the state of things was wretched in the extreme. Sails flapping, the cry of the sailors continually heard above the howling of the wind, and much water on deck. Then I went to sleep, waking again at seven to find it blowing half a gale of wind, which rapidly increased to a whole gale. At noon we were in lat.262 35° 55´ S., long. 132° 7´ E., having run 206 miles under sail.

We had service at 11.15, and again at four o'clock. In the morning there was no congregation; partly because of the rough weather, and partly because we had sailed so well that nobody realised how much faster the time was to-day than it had been yesterday, and we were therefore all behindhand. In the afternoon I went on deck for a short time, but found it so cold that I could not remain; for, although the wind was right aft, the gale blew fierce and strong. Tom had a very anxious time of it, literally flying along a strange coast, with on one hand the danger of being driven ashore if the weather should become at all thick, and on the other the risk of getting pooped by the powerful following sea if sail were shortened. At 11 p.m. we met a large sailing-ship steering to the southward; which was felt to be very satisfactory, showing as it did that we were on the right track.

Monday, May 23rd.—Precisely at 7 a.m. we made the lights of Cape Borda or Flinders, on Kangaroo Island, about twelve miles ahead, exactly where Tom expected to find it, which was a great relief to everybody on board, after our two days of discomfort and anxiety. At noon we had run 265 miles, and should have done much more had we not been obliged to shorten sail in the night.

In the afternoon the yacht passed between Kangaroo and Althorpe Islands, the coast of the former being very like the white cliffs between Dover and Folkestone. It was extremely cold, and after my night of neuralgic pains I did not dare to go out on deck, and had to content myself with observing everything through the windows of the deck-house. In the evening we made Troubridge and all the other lights on the way up to Glenelg, and after some deliberation Tom decided to heave-to for the night, instead of sailing on to the anchorage of Port Adelaide.263

Tuesday, May 24th.—By 6 a.m. we were on deck, endeavouring to ascertain our precise position, and about seven a steam-launch came bustling towards us, whose occupants hailed us with cordial welcomes to South Australia. Directly they came alongside, our small deck-house was crowded with visitors, who presented us in the name of the Holdfast Bay Yacht Club with a beautifully illuminated and kindly worded address. So anxious had they been to give us a warm and early welcome, that they had been on the look-out for us all night, while we had been waiting outside so as to arrive by daylight. It seems that the signalmen on Cape Borda had made out our number yesterday when we were more than seven miles off, so clear is the dry air of these regions. Our early guests were naturally hungry and cold; and a large party soon sat down to a hastily prepared breakfast. It was excellently supplemented, however—to us seafarers especially—by a large basket of splendid fruit which our friends had brought off with them. Presently the Mayor of Glenelg and his daughter arrived, full, like everybody else, of kindly plans for our amusement while here.

Having come to an anchor off Glenelg, Tom and Tab went up to Adelaide to attend the Birthday levée, and I landed later with the rest of the party at the long wooden pier.

The first appearance of Glenelg from the sea is very like that of Deauville, the town appearing to consist of semi-detached houses standing in the midst of gardens and trees, with a pretty background of hills. There seemed to be no small houses or streets—an impression which was confirmed by closer inspection. In fact, Glenelg is essentially a fashionable seaside place; and though there are a few excellent shops, most of the supplies must come from Adelaide, seven miles off, to which a steam-tram runs every half-hour, taking twenty minutes for the journey. The carriage-road crosses the tramway and the264 railway line to Melbourne at intervals. The country is quite flat, the road passing between fields now beautifully green. We saw the suburb of Goodwood a little way off, and soon afterwards the tall spires of the churches and the towers of the public buildings of Adelaide appeared. To-day being a general holiday in honour of the Queen's birthday, the houses in the city were decked with flags and the shops closed, which gave it rather a Sunday-like appearance. The streets are fine and wide, especially King William Street. We drove to Government House, a comfortable residence surrounded by a nice English-looking garden.

Proclamation-Tree, Glenelg

Proclamation-Tree, Glenelg

It was very pleasant to meet our friend the Governor, Sir William Robinson, again. After lunch we drove off to the races in two open carriages, with an escort of police, passing through a265 pretty part of the city, where charming little villas nestle in the midst of detached gardens. The racecourse itself is extremely pretty, and commands a fine view. The grand-stand is a fine building, with the Governor's box in the centre. The Cup had just been run for, but we saw a capital hurdle-race, over a course three miles long, with some very stiff flights of rails, about which there was no give-and-take. Then came a good flat race, three out of five horses coming in neck and neck. We drove back to Government House to tea, and then returned to Glenelg, where we had left the two little ones.

On the pier we found awaiting us an unfortunate reporter, who had been hunting Tom down all day to try and interview him, but had always managed to arrive everywhere just too late. We took him off with us and gave him some dinner, for which he was very grateful after his hard wearying day. Presently Tom and Mabelle arrived, and directly afterwards a boat came alongside with another reporter. More unfortunate even than the first, he had sat at the semaphore, halfway between here and Port Adelaide, all night, and then, not knowing where to go, had oscillated between the two places all day, telegraphing in various directions for information.

Wednesday, May 25th.—At half-past ten o'clock we started on an excursion into the picturesque mountains which lie behind Glenelg, Mr. Stock driving us in his nice little American buggy, drawn by a capital pair of horses. The rest of the party followed in a waggonette. Our way at first lay through the suburbs of Glenelg. The houses which we passed had a well-to-do appearance, with scarcely any shops or workmen's dwellings to be seen. The road soon began to ascend, and before long became steep. As we climbed upwards towards Belair the view became so lovely that it was impossible to resist the temptation of adding to our collection by pausing to photograph the scene. Our first stopping-place was the Blackwood Hotel, where we found a capital luncheon.266 The air felt pure and bracing, the sun shone brightly, and the scenery had a thoroughly English character, with pretty hedgerows, and little streams crossed by modern bridges, all of which reminded us pleasantly of the old country. What was less familiar was an unprotected railway crossing which intersected the road close by, and over which a train passed rapidly, and, as it seemed to us, with dangerously insufficient warning.

After driving for some distance along the crest of the hill, we dipped once more into the valley by another road quite as steep and more tortuous than the last. From this road the views were even more charming than those which we had previously admired; for beneath us lay a complete panorama of Adelaide and its suburbs, covering part of the rich plain at the foot of the opposite blue hills, and skirted by the north arm of the Port river. The little horses went well, and, although the road was rough and in many places steep, trotted merrily on until we reached the pier at Glenelg. Here we found a group of sixty or seventy visitors to the 'Sunbeam' waiting to be conveyed on board in the steam-launch, which had to perform several journeys to the shore before her task was accomplished.

May 25th.—About noon we got under way and steamed up towards Port Adelaide, stopping for a time off the semaphore in order to visit the Japanese corvette 'Ryujo,' and the South Australian gunboat 'Protector.' The coast reminded me of that outside Liverpool, near the mouth of the Mersey; well-built watering-places, piers, and sandy beaches—a very paradise for bathers—completing the resemblance. Largs Bay is a particularly healthy spot, and possesses an hotel which is said to be the best in South Australia. At the semaphore also a compact little township has been established, which boasts a mayor and corporation.

Further on nothing except sand and bushes could be seen;267 and a little higher we got into a narrower channel, and passed a few boats and small craft, every one of which had some sort of flag or bunting flying in our honour. The shouts of warm greeting increased as we approached the town, till at last it was difficult to turn quickly enough from side to side and respond to the waving hands and cheers and shouts of cordial welcome to the new country. The pier and wharves were densely crowded, and we were scarcely abreast of them before the Mayor (Mr. S. Malin) and Corporation came on board with an address saying how glad they were to see us in their waters. This visit was followed by another from Commodore Honey, Mr. Justice Bundey, and other gentlemen representing the South Australian Yacht Club. All this was very pleasant and gratifying; though I must confess that such unexpected kindness produced that familiar feeling known as a lump in my throat. It is always rather touching to hear any one else cheered enthusiastically, and when those nearest and dearest to one are concerned, it is naturally doubly trying.

‘Protector’ Gunboat

‘Protector’ Gunboat

After a hurried inspection of the yacht by our visitors,268 and a hasty tea, we were obliged to say 'good-bye' to our newly-made friends, for we had to catch the five-o'clock train, and there was no time to spare. In fact, we nearly missed it, and I am afraid we must have presented an undignified spectacle to the numerous idlers who had turned out to look at us—I in a waggonette heaped with bags and bundles, and the others flying along the street. Passing through the pleasant country, we arrived at the North Terrace station, and reached Government House a few minutes later. In the evening there was a dinner party and a reception, which brought what had been a most agreeable, but for me a very tiring, day to a close.






Friday, May 27th.—We breakfasted punctually at nine o'clock, and I drove afterwards with the Governor to see a collection of furs which were to be sold by auction. They were chiefly from Tasmania, and comprised a good many excellent specimens. From the fur-shop we went to the Exhibition buildings, where we were met by Sir Herbert Sandford (the British Commissioner), Sir Samuel Davenport, Mr. Jessop, and others. The building is light, airy, and well designed; and when filled, as it promises to be, with natural products, manufactured goods, and works of art, will doubtless be well worth a visit. I wish we could return for the270 opening, as we have been most kindly pressed to do; but unfortunately our motto always seems to be 'Forward!' and we are due in Melbourne on June 9th, and at Mount Gambier on the 16th; so that if we linger for every inducement I fear we shall never get through the programme of our voyage.

From the Exhibition the Governor took me for a drive all round the city, past handsome and substantial public buildings and through wide and clean streets. The system of park-lands, or reserves of open spaces between the blocks of buildings, appears to be excellent, both from a picturesque and a sanitary point of view.

We lunched at North Adelaide with Mr. Justice Bundey, and saw the beautiful view from his house. On arriving, I was given a basket of pink roses grown out of doors, which recalled delightful memories of an English June, although in Australia the present month really corresponds to our own November.

Tom had to rush off to meet Mr. Bray, and to attend the annual meeting of the South Australian Geographical Society, where he made a speech.[2] Among other people present at the meeting, he was introduced to the Australian explorer, Mr. David Lindsay, who returned about six months ago from a journey of thirteen months right across the continent, from Adelaide to a point a little to the south-east of Port Darwin. The expedition was most difficult and trying—much more so than it would have been in any ordinary year, on account of the drought. The thermometer sometimes stood at 125° in the shade, and could not register the heat in the sun! The explorers were obliged to travel by day, in order that they might see and report upon the country. They were once seven days without water, and constantly ran very short of it. The journey was made entirely with camels, and the intelligence of these animals seems to have been extraordinary. One day the party were, as usual, very short of water, and Mr. Lindsay's271 favourite camel seemed almost exhausted. Fortunately his rider chanced to notice smoke in the distance, which, he knew, indicated the presence of blacks, and consequently water. Merely turning the camel's head in the right direction, he let the reins fall on its neck, and the creature carried him to the desired spot, although it took five hours to traverse the distance—fourteen miles. After a little drink and a short rest of four hours he was able to proceed sixteen miles further, to a spot where he rested quietly for three or four days, by the side of a stream.

Saturday, May 28th.—We had several visitors in the early morning, among whom was Brigadier-General Owen, who brought plans for the defences of Adelaide for Tom to examine. Mr. Millar also called to make arrangements about our projected trip to Silverton.

Adelaide Adelaide

At half-past eleven we proceeded by train to Port Adelaide, where we were received by the Mayor (Mr. Malin) and Corporation, and taken to see the new municipal buildings. Afterwards we had lunch in the town-hall; and later on some of the party took a drive round the town and saw the museum, which, though small, is interesting, a large flour-mill, and several other buildings. By the 2.50 train we left for Adelaide, and had to dress with unheard-of rapidity in order to be present at the Governor's reception, which was attended by several hundred people. Fortunately it was a lovely day, and we were able to take advantage of the mild spring-like temperature to stroll about the pretty garden and listen to the pleasant strains of the police bands.

Sunday, May 29th.—This morning we went to the Anglican cathedral at half-past ten, and heard a most beautiful choral service, including a 'Te Deum' by Gounod. This being Whit Sunday, the interior of the church was prettily decorated. Service over, we drove to the residence of the Chief Justice, where zoology and botany are combined in a small space,272 for the semi-tropical garden in front of his house is lovely, while in the spacious grounds at the back much care is given to rare and curious pets. The interior of the house is a perfect museum of beautiful specimens of Japanese art and curios of all kinds.


Wednesday, June 1st.—A very agreeable luncheon at the Mayor of Adelaide's house, and afterwards to the town-hall, where we received a formal welcome from the Adelaide Town Council. Kind speeches and warm acknowledgments, followed by an organ recital. The instrument superb and admirably played. By 4.45 train to Cockburn to visit the celebrated Broken-Hill Silver Mine at Silverton.

Thursday, June 2nd.—Our special train reached Cockburn at eight o'clock this morning. We breakfasted at the running-sheds, and were afterwards driven over to Broken-Hill, which we reached at two o'clock, and descended the mine both before and after luncheon. We went down what is called M'Culloch's Shaft, at a point where the mine is 216 feet deep, and were greatly interested in seeing the process of extracting the ore. The latest weekly returns from this mine show a production of 46,000 ounces of silver.

Friday, June 3rd.—This morning we descended another shaft and inspected a different part of the mine, in which the ores differ greatly from those we saw yesterday, and consist chiefly of kaolin. After reaching the surface we visited the assaying offices, and watched the experiments for testing the richness of ores.

The afternoon's drive to Silverton was very pleasant. After changing horses, we went on over plains covered with salt-bushes. The plucky little horses did their work excellently, and landed us at Cockburn at 6.30 p.m. Thence, after another change of horses, we continued our journey to Thackaringa, where we rejoined the railway.

Saturday, June 4th.—On the return journey from Silverton to Adelaide I stopped during the early hours of this morning at Terowie to see my cousin Herbert Woodgate, and thoroughly enjoyed, in spite of sleepiness and fatigue, the sight at his house of so many objects which brought back memories of old days. The walls were covered with pictures of Swayslands,274 the dear old place in Kent of Herbert's father—where I spent many happy hours of childhood, and where Mr. Burnand used often to come and coach us all in charades and amateur theatricals. There were also many pictures of Penshurst Place, and of the old village church, whose beautiful chime of bells I so well remember, and where I have 'assisted' at more than one pretty wedding. It all brought back many mingled memories of joy and sorrow. Nothing could have been kinder than our welcome. I was quite sorry when we had to turn out again and trundle down to the train and be off once more to Adelaide, where we arrived at half-past twelve p.m.

We were met at the station and carried off to lunch at Government House, and afterwards had to dress as quickly as possible to go to the meet of the hounds. The day was fine and pleasant, and it was very enjoyable driving down in the Governor's mail-phaeton, and seeing the other vehicles of all sorts and kinds proceeding in the same direction. The drivers of these vehicles were so regardless of all considerations of time, place, and speed, that I began to think hunting on wheels, or even going to a meet on wheels, was far more dangerous than riding across country.

I am not sure that I should enjoy my time in Australia so much if I had not a certain belief in kismet; for travelling out here is certainly very full of risk. What with unbroken horses, rickety carts, inexperienced drivers, rotten and ill-made harness put on the wrong way, bad roads, reckless driving, and a general total indifference to the safety of life and limb, a journey is always an exciting, and sometimes a risky, experience. A little excitement is all very well; but when it becomes absolutely dangerous, a little of it goes a long way. I dislike seeing a horse's hoofs quite close to my head, with a trace or two trailing in the dust, or to hear the ominous crack of splinter-bar or bolt; yet these are things of daily and hourly occurrence in our bush drives. I must say I was275 fully confirmed in my opinion that driving was more dangerous than riding when the hunt commenced. A man in scarlet went first with a little bag of aniseed, and was followed by about 150 people on foot, and as many more either on horseback or in vehicles. The drag was so arranged that many of the jumps could be seen from a ridge near. The clever way in which little horses of all sorts and kinds, well bred and underbred, with all sorts of weights on their backs, jumped high timber fences without touching them, was wonderful to behold. Some of the obstacles were even worse than timber, for they were made of four wires stretched between timber posts with a solid rail at top. The last fence of all, after twenty minutes' run through a fairly heavy country, measured four feet two; and yet not a horse out of the fifty or sixty who jumped it even touched it in the least. I noticed that one or two of the riders were very careless of the hounds, who had to crouch under the fences until the horses had jumped over them. Afterwards I drove with the children to 'The Olives,' a pretty house with a lovely garden, full of fragrant violets, where a large party was assembled to meet us at tea.

Stypandra umbellata Stypandra umbellata

Monday, June 6th.—Resumed work upon my Ambulance paper at an early hour this morning. Not having a secretary to help me, I find the work really hard; for my arm is often so bad that I can hardly use it. I had a very busy morning,276 and after breakfast went to the Zoological Gardens, where we were met by Sir Thomas Elder and others. I was amused to see four little leopard cubs crouched in a row on a plank, looking in their dark corner like owls. From the Zoological Gardens we drove to the Botanical Gardens, and were met there by Dr. Schonburg, the director, who showed us all the plants, and especially pointed out the different species of eucalypti, which I am most anxious to understand, for they are a large 'family.' Everything here, whether called banksia or anything else, seems to run to bottle-brush just as in Western Australia. Antipodean botany is puzzling to the new arrival. The museum at the Botanical Gardens is excellently arranged, both for the exhibition of specimens and for the information of visitors.

Mrs. Hay sent her carriage for us at one o'clock, and we went out to lunch at her pretty country place, where we met a large party. We had to hurry back directly afterwards to attend the Ambulance Meeting, at which the Governor kindly presided. It was held at Government House, and was well attended. I found it a great effort to read the paper I had prepared. There were few speakers. Everything, however, went off well, and I earnestly hope our afternoon's work may bear good, useful fruit. There was a dinner-party in the evening at Government House, followed by a small reception and some nice music.

Tuesday, June 7th.—In spite of my Ambulance meeting being over, the force of habit was so strong upon me that I awoke before four. At half-past ten I went to a small gallery of excellent pictures, over which we were shown by the gentlemen in charge. We afterwards went through the School of Art and saw the pupils at work.

At half-past eleven Mr. D. Lindsay, the Australian explorer, came with his aboriginal servant, Cubadjee, whom he had brought from some place in the interior. This youth, it seems,277 is considered the short member of his family; but, although only seventeen years old, he is six feet five inches in height, while his elder brother, they declare, is seven feet six inches, and the rest of the family are equally tall. Cubadjee made fire for us with two pieces of wood (a process of which I had often heard), by rubbing a piece of wood with holes bored in it against another piece, quickly producing sparks, which easily ignited a piece of paper, and left a certain amount of black powder.

At 12.30 I went with Mr. Riches to the Treasury to see the nuggets which had been collected by the Local Government to be shown at the Exhibition. Some of them were fine specimens, especially the last great find at Teetulpa—a solid alluvial lump of gold. There was also a splendid piece of gold quartz, brought in only yesterday from Mount Pleasant. We next visited the post-office, and were shown all over that establishment by Mr. Todd, the Postmaster-General. There I saw for the first time the working of a large telephone exchange, where at least half a dozen ladies sat with their mouth and ears alternately applied to the instruments, either to speak or to listen. The telegraph-room was also interesting. Only a few years ago the telegraph service cost per week some seven or eight pounds, whereas now the expenditure amounts to twice as many thousands. Mr. Todd had himself been with the expedition to establish the great European telegraph line that runs right through Southern, Central, and Northern Australia to Port Darwin. He told us an amusing story of the natives' notion of the work they were engaged on: 'What big fool white man is, putting up fence! cat will run underneath.' Mr. Todd is a great electrician, as well as a talented meteorologist, and his tables of winds and probable weather, to be seen in the central hall of the post-office, must be of great value to shipowners.

On our way to the station we called in at the Lower278 House, and heard Mr. Playford make his speech on the no-confidence vote. From the Lower we went to the Upper House, where another gentleman was advocating, as strongly as Mr. Playford has been denouncing, the Government loans.

On the Murray River

On the Murray River

Many friends met us at the station, including the Mayor, the Speaker, the Chief Justice, and several others. Two carriages had been reserved for us in the Melbourne Express. The railroad climbs up the same hills among which we have taken so many pleasant drives during our stay here. The views of Mount Lofty and Mount Barker from the carriage window were lovely, and I was quite sorry when darkness prevented me from seeing any more of the landscape.

We arrived at Murray Bridge soon after six, and were met by Tab and Mr. Reid, and all walked up to a snug hotel. The beds were comfortable, and I managed to keep up a fire of mallee roots all night, for it was bitterly cold.

Wednesday, June 8th.—I awoke at two, and as it proved impossible to go to sleep again, I wrote and read until day279break. At a little before nine we went down to the bank to meet Mr. Macfarlane and his daughters, who had come forty miles down the Murray in their pretty little steam-launch to take us to their station lodge, eight miles from Wellington. They had started before four this morning, Mr. Macfarlane steering all the way. The launch is a Clyde-built boat, and is very fast. We passed through pretty scenery on our way up the river, and after a time came to a station to which many acres have been added by reclaiming the swamps which lie on either side of the river. There chanced to be two guns on board the launch, and as we steamed along, the gentlemen amused themselves by occasional shots at the numerous black swans, coots, and ducks.

We voyaged for some miles between banks fringed with willows, the original cuttings of which had been brought by an old French settler from Napoleon's grave in St. Helena. The trees have grown marvellously; and I hear that this year the avenue, if it may be so called, is to be extended some miles further up the stream.

At about one o'clock we arrived at the landing-pier, where we found one of the capacious trading-boats, of which we have met many on the river. It is a regular pedlar's store on a large scale, where one might buy dresses of the latest fashion, cloaks and bonnets, besides all sorts of medicines for man and beast, groceries, and stores of every kind. A most useful institution it must be to isolated toilers on the banks of the Murray.

On reaching Wellington Lodge we were first shown a shearing-house with every convenience for folding the sheep in thousands. After the shearing operations are completed the sheep are let out into little pens, so that it can be at once seen whether a man has done his work well or ill. We saw all the processes and modes of packing the wool, of which Mr. Macfarlane is justly proud; for I believe his system has been280 adopted in almost all the wool-producing countries of the world. Leaving the wool-sheds, we went to the stables, which were full of young horses; and here we were shown a 'buckboard'—a wonderful Australian conveyance. It is as light as a feather, and is capable of carrying a great deal of luggage or farm produce, besides the driver and one passenger. This particular buckboard almost came to grief yesterday with Mr. Macfarlane, who had gone out shooting with one of his daughters. He had left the carriage to get nearer his game, when the horses took fright and ran away, tearing round and round a field; a trace broke, and the light trap nearly touched the fence at every turn. The young girl stuck pluckily to her post, and at last succeeded in pulling the horses up.

Through a door in the wall of the stable yard we passed into a beautiful garden full of violets, mignonette, scarlet geraniums, and late autumn flowers; besides gooseberries, raspberries, currants, and other English fruits; while overhead stretched a long trellis covered with fine Muscatel vines from which some late bunches of grapes were still hanging.

A Buckboard

A Buckboard

Wellington Lodge itself proved to be a comfortable dwelling, with rooms opening into a garden, bright and gay with281 sunshine and flowers. The view over the plains was full of life, and the paddocks were well stocked with cattle and horses. After an excellent luncheon of good things produced upon the station, we spent a pleasant time looking over a capital collection of photographs, some of which Mr. Macfarlane very kindly gave us. Then we went into the garden, strolled round the stables, saw some of the young stock, and were shown what a buck-jumper could do. After a few preliminary curvets and bounds, the gates of the yard were opened and the animal was allowed to 'go' like an arrow from a bow for three miles. His first leap was over a very stiff gate more than five feet high, which he took like a bird, and was soon out of sight.

Having dined, we returned to the railway, and took up our quarters in a boudoir-car attached to the express train, timed to arrive at Ballarat at six o'clock to-morrow morning.

Ballarat: Thursday, June 9th.—After an excellent night in a luxurious sleeping-carriage I was called at seven. A little before eight the Mayor of Ballarat and others were announced, and I had to settle with them the programme for the day whilst the others were making their toilettes. At 8.30 we left the station for Craig's Hotel, where we found breakfast prepared in a comfortable room. Tom and the doctor had arranged to arrive at half-past ten. They had parted from us at Port Adelaide on the 3rd instant, and had gone by sea in the 'Sunbeam' to Melbourne, which they reached on the 6th, after a quick but stormy passage. Tom remained a couple of days at Melbourne—just long enough to be present at the opening of the Parliament, and also at the annual banquet of the Public Service Association, at both of which functions he was glad to be able to assist. On the 9th he embarked again, took the yacht on to Geelong, and came by train to meet us here. We were just in time to receive the Mayor at half-past eleven, and then we all went282 together to the town-hall, where the Corporation, the Mayoress, and a number of ladies were kindly waiting for us. After looking over the building we drove first to the Albion Lode Mine; but as no preparation had been made for our descent, we went on to the Star of the East Mine, where, after putting on real miners' clothes, we went down in the cage with Mr. Carroll and several other directors who had come to meet us. The directors asked me to christen a new lode the 'Lady Brassey,' but I suggested that the name should be the 'Sunbeam,' and this they eventually adopted. I was afterwards glad to hear that the next day they struck gold. There was a good deal of walking to be done in the mine, and I was very tired when we got to the surface, at about three o'clock, having been underground more than two hours. But there was still the crushing and separating machinery to be seen. This proved to be much the same as we saw in use in Cornwall last year for dealing with the tin ore.



It was past three before we got back to the hotel, tired and hungry. Much as we were in need of refreshment, we283 were not allowed to take it in peace, for interviewer after interviewer kept coming in. At last, in despair, we ordered three hansoms and went for a drive round the town and environs, which looked wonderfully beautiful in spite of the wintry season and the gloomy day.

We dined at the table d'hôte. Tom and the doctor arrived later. Tom's eye was very bad, and had to be bandaged up, and altogether he looked very unwell.

Friday, June 10th.—Miss Cornwall, the discoverer and part owner of the Midas Mine, came early this morning with her father and one or two other gentlemen—directors of the mine—to take us to see it. The drive through the town was pleasant, and we admired its fine public buildings and beautiful avenues of trees. It was a long drive to the mine through Dowling Forest, a picturesque spot with large trees growing amid park-like scenery; marred, however, by débris of abandoned mines, or little red flags and heaps of rubbish, which marked the camps of new explorers. Miss Cornwall made the way interesting by telling us the history of the various mines we passed. One story was about a mine known to be very rich, but which had never paid more than its working expenses. The reason for this unsatisfactory condition of affairs could not be discovered for a long time; but at last one man 'peached,' and was followed by the police to a public-house, where he met four of his fellow-diggers. Although they had all been carefully searched before leaving the mine, a more rigorous examination by the police produced fifteen ounces of gold on each man, the gold being valued at 4l. per ounce.

Miners’ Camp

Miners’ Camp

Arrived at the mine, we donned our mining costumes and climbed to the top of a high mound, where the crushing apparatus stood. The contents of one of the huge cylinders had been kept especially for us to see, and the miners now proceeded to run it out, with the result that a good proportion of small nuggets was obtained. This was by no means the284 last process. There would be two or three further washings. We next went down the mine—in a cage, as is usual—and had to walk through the workings, for there were no trucks or trolleys. The operations have been successful, and the character of the ground leads to the belief that large nuggets may yet be found in the river bed. After going through a great many of the levels I felt tired, and sat down, and, to amuse myself, proceeded to scratch in the side of the heading in order to fill a little pannikin, which Miss Cornwall said each of the children and I were to have to wash out in the old-fashioned miner's way. Each pannikin was marked and sent to the top285 in charge of one of the 'head gangers.' Many of the miners were Cornishmen who had emigrated from the old country, and were bringing up their sons to their own calling in this wonderful new land. They have a saying here that a Cornish miner is the best miner in the world, and the only one better is a Cornish man's son. The meaning of this is that you cannot begin a calling too early in life, and that an intimate, though perhaps unscientific, knowledge of the various strata is of the utmost importance in mining operations.

On returning to the surface the air seemed frightfully cold in comparison with the warm atmosphere of the mine; and I shivered and shook, as I sat by a little heap of débris, and washed out my pannikin of dirt. But I only obtained about half an ounce of small gold nuggets, which, however, the experienced say, denote the proximity of a bed of very much larger specimens.[3] It seemed delightful to get into the warm shelter of the office, put on our wraps again, and enjoy the lunch so kindly provided for us. We drank success to the Midas Mine and all connected with it, specially to the energetic discoverer, principal shareholder, and manageress—Miss Cornwall.

Immediately after lunch Tom and I were obliged to leave, as we wished to call on the Bishop. There was only just time to do this and catch the train to Geelong, at which place we arrived at about half-past six. We were met at the station286 by Mr. Bartlett (one of the numerous sons of the Mr. Bartlett who was so long with Mr. Brassey in France, Spain, and other parts of the world), and soon found ourselves on board the yacht again, which looked, as usual, pleasant and homelike after our short absence.

Saturday, June 11th.—I was up early, and tried to rouse the other people up too, so as to be ready to receive the Mayor and Corporation, who arrived punctually, accompanied by their ladies. The presentation of the address of welcome took some time, and then we had to go ashore and drive round the town of Geelong to admire its public buildings and natural beauties. Tom went first, with the principal members of the Corporation, in a break drawn by four horses, and I followed with the children in other carriages. We drove first to the skating-rink, through nice broad streets with good houses on each side. There we were shown an excellent collection of New Guinea curiosities belonging to a German explorer. From the skating-rink we drove through fine streets to the Botanical Gardens, where we were given beautiful nosegays, and there met the rest of the party, who were being taken round by the curator. The gardens, and especially the houses, seem admirably planned. I noticed an ingenious arrangement of water-pipes leading to the top of the tree-ferns, by which the parasites growing on them are kept constantly moist.

When we had thoroughly explored the gardens we bade adieu to the Mayor and our friends on shore, and went off to the yacht. We reached Hobson's Bay at dusk, and arrived at Government House in the middle of dinner!


Exhibition Buildings, Melbourne

Exhibition Buildings, Melbourne



Sunday, June 12th.—The Government House of the colony of Victoria is an enormous building, surrounded by an extensive park, situated on the top of a small hill, which commands a fine view over Melbourne and its suburbs. There is a complete suite of private apartments in the house, besides rooms for many guests, and splendid reception, banqueting, and ball rooms.

Monday, June 13th.—My cold is still bad; and although Tom is also far from well, he went to the town-hall this morning to receive a deputation from the Victorian Branch of the Imperial Federation League. The morning was a busy one288 until it became time to go down to the yacht to lunch and to receive the officers of the naval forces and Naval Brigade. Miss Cornwall and her father came later, bringing the nugget with them which had been found on Friday not more than two feet from the place where I was scratching. It is to be named after me. It is looked upon as the forerunner of other and larger ones. Miss Romilly also arrived, and we all returned to Melbourne in the evening.

Tuesday, June 14th.—After a bad night I had to receive many interviewers. Amongst those who called was a gentleman from the Woman's Suffrage Society, who wished to elicit some expression of my opinion, as he understood that I was strongly in favour of woman's suffrage. He seemed disappointed when I told him he was mistaken, and that I thought women already did govern the world more or less, whereas if we had votes we should probably not have nearly as much power as we now possess without any undue fuss being made about it.

Mabelle went down with Miss Romilly to see her off to England by the 'Bengal.' Tom took the children for a walk, but it was still too wet for me to venture out, except in a close carriage. In the afternoon I went with the Governor to the fine public library, where we were met by Sir George Verdon and some other gentlemen. It is a splendid building, and the arrangements are most excellent. A student can get any book he requires, on almost every subject, without the least trouble. From the library we drove to the picture-gallery, which contains a small but excellent collection, partly selected and sent out by Sir Frederick Leighton. Then we went to the museum, where we found many New Guinea and Fijian curiosities. Ugly objects are here arranged so as to look pretty, and I gathered many hints for the future arrangement of my own museum at home.

Tom and Mabelle had not intended starting for Mount Gambier until to-morrow, but they found to-day that it was289 absolutely necessary to leave by the 4.5 train if they wished to arrive in time for the opening of the new railway from Mount Gambier to Narracoorte.

Wednesday, June 15th.—I spent a busy morning reading, writing, receiving interviewers, and trying on my fancy dress for the Jubilee Ball. Lunch was early in consequence of Sir Henry and Lady Loch having to lay the foundation-stone of the Genevieve Ward of the hospital. I did not go to the ceremony, although I discovered afterward that I had been expected. The ladies of the committee sent me a lovely bouquet which they had intended to present, ornamented with a little stuffed bird bearing a tiny model of the 'Sunbeam' on its back. I had a hard afternoon's work until tea-time, when my friend Mrs. Fairfax, the Admiral's wife, arrived with Miss Dundas.

Victoria Defence Fleet

Victoria Defence Fleet

Thursday, June 16th.—Sir Henry Loch, Mrs. Fairfax, and Miss Dundas went to the Mint this morning to see the first of the new sovereigns struck, but I was not able to accompany them. Everyone seems to agree that the likeness of her Majesty which is to appear upon the coins is not at all good. The weather was showery all day, and bitterly cold in the afternoon when we went to assist at the stone-laying of the Wesleyan College, where many speeches were made, Sir Henry290 Loch's being a really brilliant oration. There was again an early dinner to-night, to allow of our all going afterwards to the Bijou Theatre to see Madame Majeroni in 'Wanda.'

Saturday, June 18th.—Tom, Tab, and Mabelle returned to-day from Mount Gambier. I must use Tom's description of the expedition.

'We made another excursion from Melbourne on June 14th, to attend the opening of the railway connecting the district of Mount Gambier, in South Australia, with the direct line from Adelaide to Melbourne. We travelled to Wolseley by the ordinary train, the journey occupying from 4 p.m. on June 14 until an early hour on the following morning. There we waited several hours for the special train from Adelaide; and Mount Gambier was not reached until a late hour in the evening.

'Mount Gambier is a pleasing town of 5,000 inhabitants, in the centre of a district of rich volcanic soil, thrown up over a sandstone formation by the eruptions of a former period, when the surrounding mountains were active volcanoes. The two principal craters are now filled with lakes of great depth, appropriately named, from their beautiful colouring, the Blue Lake and the Green Lake. Looking outwards from the craters, a vast and fertile plain expands on all sides, bounded by the ocean on the south, and by distant chains of hills on the north. Here and there the plain is studded with other cones, as distinctly defined as those of Mount Gambier, but on a smaller scale.

'I will not enter in detail upon all the incidents of the opening of the railway. We were greeted by the school children with a stirring rendering of the National Anthem. We travelled a short distance on the line, and were banqueted in the evening. I replied for the visitors, and preached federation. In the interval between the opening of the railway and the banquet we went out to see a run with the291 Mount Gambier drags. The timber fencing would be thought desperate riding in an ordinary English hunting-field. The doubles in and out of a road are decidedly formidable.

'We visited the Wesleyan Chapel at Mount Gambier. The minister described the excellent organisation which enables him to give effective spiritual supervision over a wide district. In the afternoon travelled by special train to Narracoorte. Had some interesting conversation on the land question. From the railway traffic point of view monopolies in land were severely criticised. Where tracts of 100,000 or 200,000 acres are in the hands of a single proprietor, the district does not progress as in cases where the land is subdivided into smaller holdings. The large proprietor concentrates his energies on sheep. The owner of a small tract finds it pays to give a larger proportion of his land to arable cultivation. Subdivision of land encourages population. Monopoly in land has the contrary effect. If the increase of numbers, under good conditions as to standard of living, be one of the aims of government, it follows that concentration of ownership and occupation is contrary to public policy. The objection disappears where satisfactory arrangements are made for letting the land on liberal terms. In this case the large proprietor is a provider of capital, for which he receives interest, in the form of rent, readily accepting a lower rate than a labourer, with slender security to offer, would be compelled to pay if he were the borrower of money instead of the hirer of land.'

The party from Mount Gambier, though rather tired, were able to come on board the yacht with us about one o'clock. We had quite a large and pleasant lunch on board, and an 'At home' in the afternoon, when upwards of two hundred people came to tea.

The yacht was berthed alongside the graving-dock pier at Williamstown, which made it easy of access. In spite of292 the agonising pain which Tom was suffering from an inflamed eye, he insisted on going to the Seamen's Meeting, and actually managed to make a good speech, though he scarcely knew what he was saying at the time. The party at dinner this evening included several members of the Government, among whom was Mr. Deakin, who has just returned from attending the Colonial Conference in London.

Lancers and Soudan Contingent Lancers and Soudan Contingent

Monday, June 20th.—The day of the grand volunteer review (the beginning of the festivities in Jubilee week) dawned bitterly cold, as indeed one must expect in midwinter. I got leave from the Doctor, with great difficulty, for Tom to go to it in a closed carriage; for he was still suffering much from his eyes. Lady Loch drove with me to the ground in an open carriage, and of course we had an excellent place close to the saluting-flag, and were able to admire the march past of the troops. They seemed an excellent and well-drilled body of men. The Lancers and the Royal293 Naval Brigade especially attracted attention. All the party went to the military tournament in the evening except Tom and I, who stayed at home with Lady Loch. The wind was very high and keen to-day, and seemed to increase in violence towards evening.

Tuesday, June 21st.—During the night it blew half a gale, and the wind incessantly shook all the little lamps which are to be used at the Jubilee illuminations to outline the frames of the windows, producing discordant and sleep-dispelling noises.

At half-past ten the day's celebration began with the Governor's levée, which was tremendously crowded by all sorts and conditions of men. There were two black chiefs from Fernshaw. Lady Loch first presented her address to the Governor from the ladies of Victoria, and then hundreds of other loyal addresses followed from all parts of the colony. There was considerable confusion, and the scene, as we looked down from the gallery at the end of the ball-room, was very animated and amusing. Directly after the levée came a grand lunch given by the Mayor. I went for a long drive, first to St. Kilda, and then on to the Convent of the Good Shepherd, which enabled me to form a very fair idea of the suburbs of Melbourne. I was particularly struck with the enormous width of the roads. Such space appears to us unnecessary, but I am told it is needed for the occasional passage of mobs of cattle. We met one large mob of, I should think, more than five hundred head, driven by half a dozen men with long stock whips. The stock-men appeared to travel comfortably, for some buggies followed laden with their simple camp equipment.

Wednesday, June 22nd.—At twelve to-day the children and I paid a visit to the law courts, where we were met by Mr. Justice Kernford, who, being engaged in court himself, deputed Mr. Sheriff Read to show us round. The courts seem294 well arranged, and the rooms are much more handsomely furnished than similar places in England. The library attached to the courts was filled with books of reference. There are smaller rooms for consultations with clients. There were also one or two large reception-rooms, in which hung some portraits of former Governors and Judges.

We had an early dinner, and then all dressed for the ball; assembling first in the large private hall a little before nine, where we formed ourselves into a procession. The costumes were so rich and correct in their details that the sight must have been very pretty as we passed through the crowds of spectators (who had been arriving for hours, and had filled the public reception-rooms), and took up our positions on the daïs.

For the first few minutes the crowding was tremendous, as everybody wished to shake hands with the Governor and Lady Loch. In course of time, however, the throng began to clear away, and for the rest of the evening it was possible not only to walk about but to dance in perfect comfort. It was a magnificent spectacle, and the arrangements seemed admirably conceived and carried out, the Fountain Court, covered in by a temporary structure, being perhaps the prettiest of all. At one o'clock the doors of the supper-room were thrown open. Not long after supper Sir Henry and Lady Loch and I retired; but I believe that many of the people did not get away until five o'clock. The illuminations were beautiful, especially among the shipping, both at Williamstown and Port Melbourne, and the little 'Sunbeam' made herself as gay as she could with red and blue lights.

Thursday, June 23rd.—The event of to-day was the christening of the central hall of the Parliament Houses, to be henceforward known as the 'Queen's Hall.' An immense number of people had assembled. The daïs, to which the Governor, Lady Loch, and we ourselves were led, had been295 placed at the foot of Mr. Marshall Wood's fine statue of her Majesty, and everything was arranged to ensure a splendid coup d'œil; but all the details of the ceremony have been so fully described in the newspapers that I need not repeat them here. It was worth coming all the thousands of miles we have traversed by sea and land to have the opportunity of witnessing such loyal enthusiasm.

Directly after we left the hall I hurried on board the 'Sunbeam' to receive a couple of hundred guests, and had only just time to get back to Government House to dine and dress for the State Concert at the Exhibition building, which was densely crowded. The combined musical societies, under the skilful leadership of Mr. Herz, opened the proceedings by singing the 'Old Hundredth,' in which the audience joined with great heartiness. This was followed by a grand Jubilee Ode, composed by Dr. Mackenzie, and by several excellently rendered solos, among the performers being Mr. Beaumont, the tenor, whose 'Death of Nelson' brought the house down, and Miss Amy Sherwin, 'the Australian nightingale,' whose rendering of 'The Harp that once,' 'Within a Mile of Edinboro' Town,' and 'Home, Sweet Home' was simply perfect.

Friday, June 24th.—To-day a demonstration of schoolchildren, said to be the largest gathering of the kind ever held in the colony, took place in the Exhibition building. Twenty thousand children must have been there; and as they each wore a rosette and carried a little flag, the scene looked gay as a summer garden. Of course there were the usual loyal anthems; and besides the cheers in the programme the children did a good deal of happy shouting on their own account. The Bishop of Melbourne gave them an excellent address, and all the arrangements were admirably and carefully carried out.

Saturday, June 25th.—Awoke early after a fairly good296 night, and set to work at once on my correspondence, which accumulates terribly in spite of my efforts to answer every letter as it arrives. I made many futile attempts to write up my journal, but was interrupted by numerous interviewers, especially by secretaries of charitable societies, anxious to get some share of the proceeds derived from showing the 'Sunbeam.'



Precisely at twelve o'clock we started for the races at Caulfield. The road lay for several miles through prosperous-looking suburbs consisting of villas and a multitude of small wooden houses with corrugated iron verandahs and roofs. However convenient this material may be for such purposes, it does not add to the beauty of the landscape. Bungalows in India, and indeed all over the East, look picturesque and pretty, with their deep wooden verandahs, which must surely297 be much cooler than these corrugated iron houses, said to be hot in summer and cold in winter.

We arrived at the racecourse at about a quarter to one. The heavy rain of last night had swamped the place, and though luckily the course was not flooded, it was very heavy going, and a great deal of the ground close to the course seemed quite under water. I heard a story of a lady having to swim her horse over a field during this morning's run! It was bitterly cold, and we all felt glad of the excitement caused by the appearance of the jockeys, mounted on nice-looking horses. I fixed my mind on horse number twelve on the card, and thought he looked extremely well as he cantered past the stand. The poor animal kept up bravely till near the end, when he caught his foot in a hurdle, while going at a fearful pace, and fell, breaking his off-leg so badly that he had to be shot on the spot. His jockey escaped with only a severe shaking. I had no idea until I came here what steeplechase riding was like in Australia. To-day, just before the first race came off, an ambulance-carriage was driven into the centre of the ground and took up a central position so as to be able to quickly reach any part of the course. I was assured that it was not at all unusual for two or three jockeys to be injured in one race. Another significant and permanent adjunct of the Caulfield racecourse is the neat little hospital, provided with every possible medical and surgical appliance for remedying injuries to the human frame. There are eight beds in the hospital, and I was told that they had at times been all filled with serious cases. Such a state of things degrades the good old national sport of steeplechasing to the level of Spanish bullfights, where the toreadors hear Mass before going into the ring. It is not wonderful that these dreadful accidents happen, for some of the fences are truly fearful, consisting of a big tree cut into four or five pieces, nailed firmly one on top of the other to a height of four298 feet six inches. This arrangement precludes all possibility of the fence yielding if the horse touches it. The argument in favour of this fence is that it represents the real fence of the country, and that horses are accustomed to jump it. The accidents, which are nearly as frequent and as bad in the flat races, occur generally from the tremendous number of starters. To-day there were thirty-two in one race and forty-seven in another, and some of the worst casualties were caused by one horse falling and others tumbling over him.

At half-past two we left, for the Governor had to open the bazaar in aid of the Convalescent Home in the place of Lady Loch, who was unable to leave her room. We drove to the Exhibition building, which did not look half so pretty as yesterday when it was filled by the children. However, everything went off well according to the programme, and after one or two short speeches, and a few pieces on the organ, we made the tour of the bazaar, and tried to find amid the quantities of pretty things something to buy, which is always a difficult matter. From the Exhibition building Mr. des Graz and I proceeded to the yacht at Williamstown, whither she had been obliged to return on account of the rough weather off Sandridge. My telegram had not been received, and I had to wait at the station, until a civil greengrocer volunteered to drive me down to the pier alongside of which the yacht was berthed. After the spacious rooms of Government House the 'Sunbeam' cabins looked very small, but they are snug and bright. When one is so many thousands of miles away from England the various little treasures scattered about them remind me of home and its happy associations, and I feel not utterly cut off from the scenes I love so well.

We were packed up ready to go to Sir W. Clarke's charming place at Sudbury, when we received a telegram saying that in consequence of a death in his household he could not receive us; so all our plans have to be changed. Tom joined299 me on board the yacht shortly before midnight, after a pleasant evening at the banquet given by the Melbourne branch of the Imperial Federation League.[4]

Tuesday, June 28th.—I was awakened early by the pattering of rain on the deck, and on looking through the portholes I could not see three yards ahead for the curtain of wet mist which seemed to hang before them. Tom was anxious that we should give up our projected journey, for he was much afraid of the risk I should run from the cold and damp. But, just as I always in England go to a meet on a fine day because it is fine, and on a wet day because I hope it will clear up, I determined to start now. I was already dressed by ten o'clock, when the Governor, and a few others whom Tom had invited to accompany him as far as the Heads, arrived. The fog was still so dense that the deputy harbour-master would not allow the yacht to be unmoored; and after waiting some time, the Governor returned to Melbourne, whither I also went by the 10.45 train. Tom—who had settled to take the yacht round to Sydney—had to postpone his departure, as it was impossible to move out; and we afterwards learned that many accidents happened during the fog. From Spencer Street Station we drove across to Princes Bridge Station, and thence proceeded at a snail's pace—still on account of the fog—out of the city, till we got to Mitcham, when it began to clear. A few minutes afterwards the sun came out brilliantly like an English summer's day, and when we reached Lilydale it really felt quite hot.

Messrs. Cobb & Co. had sent a Tom Thumb sort of coach and a buggy, into which our numerous party could by no means squeeze. However, we packed both vehicles as full as possible, and sent for another conveyance, familiarly known as a 'Tip-up,' its narrow wheels making it liable to upset except on good roads.300

About three o'clock we reached St. Hubert's, a pretty house, the owner of which is now in England with his family. One of his sons remains to manage the estate. We were soon comfortably established in pleasant rooms looking on to a sunny verandah. The view from our windows was perfectly enchanting, stretching away over the distant mountains, now covered with snow. A tremendous swamp lies between the house and the foot of the range, which accounts for the heavy mist that rises at sunset. My room was delicious with a blazing fire, and after lunch we went round the cellars with our kind host, and saw all the interesting and various processes of wine-making. Mr. de Castella has introduced the best methods of preparation, as practised in Europe, and has succeeded in producing wines of a quality equal to the finest supplied from the French and German vineyards. By the time we had finished our tour of inspection it was cold and dark, and after dinner we all went early to bed.

Wednesday, June 29th.—We were called at half-past six, and soon after nine made a start, in two coaches, on a cold and wintry morning, for Black Spur. Our way first lay through the vineyards, which were not in their best looks, having only just been scarified, as the process is called. It means cutting off the branches and reducing the vines to small and ugly bushes, destitute of leaves at this season. On our way we passed a large 'selection' belonging to Mr. McNabb, who is a great judge of prize cattle and stock of all kind, and who, like many other Scotchmen in the colony, seems to have prospered in everything he puts his hand to. Further on we came to Koordal, a 'reserve' for the aboriginals. It has a nice house, and the land is good. The aboriginals are rapidly dying out as a pure race, and most of the younger ones are half-breeds. Even in this inclement weather it was sad to notice how little protection these wretched beings had against its severity. We passed a miserable shanty by the side of the301 road, scarcely to be called a hut, consisting merely of a few slabs of bark propped against a pole. In this roadside hovel two natives and their women and piccaninnies were encamped, preferring this frail shelter to the comfortable quarters provided for them at Koordal. The condition of the men of the party contrasted very unfavourably with their appearance when they presented themselves under the charge of Captain Traill, the Governor's A.D.C., at his Excellency's Jubilee levée last week. To-day they looked like the veriest tramps, and were most grateful for a bit of butterscotch for the baby and the shilling apiece which we gave them after an attempt at conversation.

From Healesville we rattled merrily over an excellent road, the scenery improving every mile, till we reached the picturesque little village of Fernshaw, a tiny township on the river Watt. Important as an absolutely pure water supply is to a city like Melbourne, where the present provision is anything but satisfactory, we could not help regretting that this hamlet and several others must be cleared away in the course of the next two years, in order to provide space for the gathering-ground of the city's drinking water. The increased facilities for travel afforded by the railway, now nearly completed to Healesville, will, however, enable people to make new settlements on the other line of hills further from Black Spur. The memory of Fernshaw will always linger pleasantly, and I rejoice that I have seen it before it is swept off the face of the earth by the requirements of the big city near it.



From Fernshaw up the Black Spur must be a perfectly ideal drive on a hot summer's day, and even in midwinter it was enchanting. The road is cut through a forest of high eucalyptus-trees, varying from 100 to 450 feet in height, and from twenty to fifty, and even seventy, feet in girth. At intervals roaring torrents rush down gullies overgrown with tree-ferns, and full of dicksonia-antarcticas and alsophilas.302 To-day they looked very curious; for, instead of growing as usual, with their fronds erect or nearly level, all were bent down by the weight of the late heavy fall of snow, so that they resembled graceful umbrellas and parasols. So fairy-like was the sylvan scene that I half expected to see the curved branches open softly and disclose naiads or wood-nymphs. I had always been told that these fern-gullies were charming, but I never thought anything could be half so lovely as this romantic ravine. If only the sunlight could have glanced through the trees and thrown some shimmering sunbeams on the bright green leaves, it would have been even303 more delightful. After climbing up the hill by a steep but good road we arrived at Myrtle Gully, called after the trees which grow there. They are quite different from our idea of myrtles, though their dark and glossy leaves contrast finely with the lighter green of the young tree-ferns and the blue-green of the eucalypti. My botanical ideas are getting quite confused and upset in Australia, and I must study the new forms with the assistance of some kind director of gardens. It is necessary to understand the classification of these plants, for the common names are entirely deceptive and utterly opposed to one's preconceived ideas of the species to which they belong.

We climbed up to the summit of the hill, and on our way saw some rail-splitters at work. These men are peculiar to Australia, and I cannot but think they do harm to the country. On payment of a fee of 1l. a year they are allowed to go into the forests and kill the finest trees by 'ringing' them. Often the trees thus dealt with are left to die as they stand and disfigure the forest. In this way an enormous quantity of valuable timber seems to be uselessly destroyed. The rail-splitters remind me of squirrels, who nibble off nuts before they are ripe, and then take a dozen away to their winter's nests; or of a vixen, who will bite the heads off twenty chickens and only carry one back to her cubs.

On our return to the comfortable inn at Fernshaw we found cheerful fires ready to welcome us. This inn is very prettily situated. At the back runs the river Watt, brawling over its stones like the veriest Scotch salmon-trout stream. It is full of excellent imported trout, which flourish well in these antipodean waters and attain a weight of six or seven pounds. Across the river is thrown a primitive bridge, consisting of the trunk of a big tree cut in halves. Very slippery and slimy it looked, and I did not feel inclined to attempt the perilous passage. Near the inn were some extremely nice304 gardens with the trunks of old tree-ferns filled with flowers, producing a pretty effect as rustic flower-pots.

A Forest Bridge

A Forest Bridge

Precisely at half-past two we started on our homeward journey, and with the exception of a few minutes' stay at Healesville to water the horses, and at the blacks' camp to have a little more chat with them, we did not stop anywhere on the way. Since morning the blacks had turned their huts right round, for the wind had shifted and they wanted shelter from its severity.

At 5.15 we reached St. Hubert's, just saving the daylight over the last seven miles of bad road. We all felt better for our pleasant expedition, though the violent joltings of the road and the bumpings of the coach were decidedly fatiguing.305

Thursday, June 30th.—We were called at half-past six, and hastily got up to pack off the luggage before setting off at eight, on a fine though misty morning. We had a delightful drive to the station at Lilydale, after bidding a regretful adieu to picturesque St. Hubert's.

Once in the suburbs of Melbourne, it was necessary to crawl along at a snail's pace on account of the numerous express trains running into the city at this early hour. We did not reach the terminus until nearly eleven o'clock, and were glad to drive quickly to Menzie's Hotel for breakfast. A large mail arrived for us from Wellington, as well as heaps of letters and telegrams. At half-past twelve Mabelle and I went to the Botanical Gardens, where Mr. Guilfoyle, the superintendent, met us, and was good enough to allow me to drive all round the gardens. He kindly explained the arrangement of the plants, clearing away many botanical difficulties which have puzzled me ever since I landed in Western Australia. I do not think I ever saw so well-arranged and beautiful a garden as this, and never have I had so intelligent and kind a cicerone as Mr. Guilfoyle. There is a beautiful lake in the gardens, well stocked with different species of wild-fowl. We drove all over the exquisitely kept lawn, yet the carriage-wheels appeared to make no impression. The grass grows from a mixture of buffalo and other kinds of grass-seeds—a combination which produces a velvet-like sward about three inches in depth, and apparently incapable of injury. At one part of the gardens where the carriage could not possibly penetrate, Mr. Guilfoyle had thoughtfully provided a chair and two men to carry me through the fern-gully. This rivals what we saw at Fernshaw yesterday, and I was able to observe what I could not well see there—the undergrowth of smaller ferns and the parasitic ferns growing on the trunks of others. I was quite sorry to leave. Mr. Guilfoyle sent us away laden with interesting botanical306 specimens, and gave Mabelle and me each a sweet-smelling bouquet of daphnes and white camellias.

We lunched at Government House. After bidding good-bye to H.E. and Lady Loch, from whom we have received so much kindness, we went to Menzie's Hotel, calling on our way at Cole's Book Arcade, which is one of the sights of Melbourne. A most curious place it is; consisting of a large arcade three stories high, about the length of the Burlington Arcade in London, though perhaps rather wider. The whole place from top to bottom is one mass of books, arranged in different styles, some according to price and some according to subject. It was crowded with intending purchasers, as well as with readers who apparently had not the slightest intention of purchasing, and who had only gone there to while away a leisure hour, and to listen to the band, which discoursed sweet music to them whilst they read.

After strolling through this wonderful arcade, we collected the luggage from the hotel and sent it off to the station, following ourselves in time to catch the 4.55 train to Seymour.



Friday, July 1st.—We left by the 9.30 train for Shepparton, in pouring rain, passing through a flat rich grazing country, which seemed well stocked with sheep. The grass looked luxuriant, and must be excellent for dairy produce. The fences were different from any we had seen before, made of felled trees laid lengthwise all round the paddocks. As may easily be imagined, they form a formidable obstacle for young horses, many of which were running in the paddocks. All this was interesting, but the beauties of the distant landscape were quite blotted out by the rain and mist. However, when we crossed the Goulbourn, the sun began to try and peep through the clouds, which had hitherto hidden everything from our view. Shepparton is a rapidly growing township, with 2,000 inhabitants. A few years ago there was not a single house in the place.307

Sydney Harbour

Sydney Harbour

The township of Shepparton, like all Australian settlements, is arranged in square blocks, the houses consisting chiefly of four- or six-roomed cottages of one story, built of wood or corrugated iron. At present the whole place appears to be under water, but its inhabitants say that in summer it is beautiful, and the pasturage certainly looks excellent. In the course of our drives we went to Mr. and Mrs. Robinson's house. There I met some ladies and gentlemen interested in ambulance work, to whom I said a few words and gave some papers. I hope they will communicate with the head-centre at Melbourne, and obtain permission to establish a branch-centre here. Everybody seems to agree that it would be most useful, as the doctors are few and far between, and there are only five medical men to an area of 1,000 square miles! We left by the 4.30 train for Seymour, Mr. Rose driving me to the station in his carriage with his pretty pair of ponies. They are said to be perfectly quiet, and I suppose they are, according to Australian ideas; but they did not come up to my notion of docility. Besides sundry kicks and buck-jumps, they had both legs over the splinter-bar once, one leg over the308 pole twice, and another leg over the traces, which fortunately came unfastened, or in the regular kicking match which ensued some mischief would have been done. I expected every minute that the little carriage would have been broken to pieces, and that we should have been landed at the bottom of the quagmire over which the road appeared to run.

Seymour was reached at 6.30, just in time to change into the express, and at Albury we were again transferred, at 10.30 p.m., into Lord Carrington's carriage, sent up from Sydney for us.


Banksias, &c., New South Wales

Banksias, &c., New South Wales



Saturday, July 2nd.—When I awoke in the morning I saw a landscape of a very different character from the scenery of Victoria, showing that we were getting into a warmer climate.

Our train was late, and all were glad when Sydney was at last reached and we found ourselves driving swiftly to Government House. The way lay through crowded streets resembling the Hammersmith Road beyond Kensington. There were some pretty views of the harbour down the narrow streets310 through which we drove on the way to Government House, a building in the Gothic style.

The afternoon was so fine that everybody longed to be out of doors, and I enjoyed a stroll in the gardens—from which there is a lovely view of the harbour—immensely. I had heard so much of it that I had fully expected to be disappointed, but it more than fully realised all my preconceived ideas of its attractions. The water was crowded with small boats, and the Volunteers, disappointed in the non-arrival of the 'Sunbeam,' were taking their exercise in Macquarrie Fort. So deep is the water beneath what is called the Tarpeian Rock that the big ships of the Orient Line, the P. & O., and other giant traversers of the ocean, can easily lie alongside. We spent a quiet evening, and were glad to go to bed early after our recent short and disturbed nights. Before retiring, however, arrangements were made for a steam-launch to meet Tom in the 'Sunbeam' on his way in from the Heads, and to tell him to stop at Watson's Bay, as the Volunteers wished to go out to meet him. Saturday afternoons and Sundays are their only possible days, and if he were to wait for Monday it would be a serious disappointment to hundreds of people. Large numbers were waiting about this afternoon on the look-out for the 'Sunbeam,' and they seemed much disappointed that she did not come in.

Sunday, July 3rd.—After a refreshing night I awoke, and was soon at the window enjoying the view over the harbour. The morning was misty, but the effects of light and shade were most beautiful. At 10.30 the Governor and Lady Carrington, with their children, his Excellency's staff, Colonel St. Quintin, myself and others, went on board the steam-launch and steamed down the harbour towards Watson's Bay. The views on every side were charming, both looking up the harbour towards Parramatta and also in the direction of the Circular Quay, where the big mail steamers lie. The shores of311 the various little creeks and inlets were studded by fine houses with pretty gardens stretching down to the blue waters of the harbour. We passed Clark's Island, which is the quarantine station for dogs, Darling Head being the quarantine station for human beings, and then we saw the 'Sunbeam' lying at anchor in the little inlet called Watson's Bay. The gig was soon sent alongside, and we were speedily on board. I was delighted to see Tom looking so much better, though he was still obliged to wear a pair of green spectacles. After a somewhat lengthy inspection of the yacht Lord and Lady Carrington and party returned to town, and we had service on board.

Precisely at half-past two, as agreed, we weighed anchor, and proceeded slowly up the harbour under steam. Not seeing anything of the boats, which were also to leave Sydney at 2.30, we steamed as slowly as possible in order not to meet them too soon. A very pretty sight it was when we beheld the Volunteers approaching in two regular lines of boats, accompanied by crowds of people in small sailing and rowing boats, as well as launches and steamers, all apparently perilously overloaded with passengers.

When the Volunteers reached the yacht they all tossed their oars and stood up and saluted. Then the commanding officers came alongside, and we received them on board. It really was a lovely sight, and my only wish was to be, like the famous bird, in two places at once—namely, where I was, to help to entertain the Volunteers and thank them for their warm and kindly welcome, and on shore to look at the dear old 'Sunbeam' surrounded by the mosquito fleet, through which she had considerable difficulty in making her way without doing any damage. It took some time for all the officers and men to come on board to have some refreshment and look over the yacht, and it was therefore rather late before the commanding officer rowed us ashore in his gig.312 We landed at the man-of-war steps, close to Government House, where a large crowd had assembled to give us another welcome. They formed a little lane for us to pass through, cheering lustily, and smiling and nodding as if they were glad to see us. There was nothing formal or obtrusive about their welcome. It was, in truth, a real, warm, honest greeting from friends across the sea, and it touched both Tom and myself deeply. All such demonstrations invariably give me a choking sensation in my throat, and I was not altogether sorry when we had made our way through the crowd of kindly welcomers and reached the steep pathway leading to Government House. Halfway up we could stop and survey the scene, and I was able to partially gratify my wish to see the yacht from the shore with the boats around it.

After a short rest we had another quiet evening, Tom coming to dinner, but returning to sleep on board the yacht. I went to bed early to try and nurse a bad and rapidly increasing cold, caught during the wet journey between Melbourne and Sydney.

Monday, July 4th.—I awoke at five, and wrote letters. The doctor would not hear of my going out as my cold was no better.

It continued foggy all day, and the children had to content themselves with skating and battledore and shuttlecock in the verandahs. Lord Carrington, Tom, and Mabelle went for a long walk, calling on Cardinal Moran, and paying visits to the picture-gallery, the Anglican cathedral, and other places; and after an early dinner at 6.45 all the party went to the meeting of the Royal Humane Society. I was bitterly disappointed at being unable to attend, and perhaps do something to encourage the friends of the St. John Ambulance Association.

Tuesday, July 5th.—Awoke early, and had a busy morning. The day proved lovely, so I was allowed to walk in the garden.313 After lunch we started in a carriage-and-four for a long but most delightful drive to the South Head. We passed through the far-extending suburbs of Sydney with their good houses and gardens. It was very charming to have the occasional glimpses of the many inlets and creeks of the harbour. Farther on we reached the real bush, full of flowers, the ground being covered with the red and white epacris, and with various banksias, hoyas, and other flowers. At the South Head the view of the city, through the light veil of smoke and fog which hung over the landscape, and beyond the lighthouse on the other side over the ocean, was very fine.

Summer Hill Creek

Summer Hill Creek

There was a large and pleasant party at dinner, and in the314 evening an 'At home,' at which I was interested to meet several Sussex people. The world is very small after all!

Wednesday, July 6th.—I had a busy morning, and at noon went on board the yacht, returning by three o'clock to meet Mr. Montefiore at the large picture-gallery. Thence we went to look at Mr. Bray's collection of curiosities from New Guinea and the Islands, and spent a pleasant and instructive hour. Some of our party returned to Government House for an early dinner, while Tom, Mabelle, and others went on board the yacht to entertain the officers of the Naval Volunteer force which has been established in Sydney, on the model of the corps which Tom was instrumental in raising at home. At eight o'clock I went down to the shore and looked at the Volunteers drilling in the open. They certainly are a splendid body of men, and their drill is quite wonderful. I have never seen such good cutlass drill anywhere, and I have 'assisted' at many similar inspections.

Thursday, July 7th.—To-day we called on the Mayor, and were taken all over the fine buildings which are being erected as a memorial of the Centenary of New South Wales. Afterwards we visited the Picturesque Atlas Printing Office, and watched the processes of printing, engraving, lithographing, &c. Dinner was again early, and after it, Lady Carrington, Mabelle, Mr. Egerton, and others went to a Zerbini quartette, whilst Lord Carrington, Tom, and the remainder of the party set off to a shoeblacks' concert, the performers at which had originally been some of the roughest ragamuffins in the city.

Tuesday, July 12th.—The morning was pouring wet. Tom started at half-past nine to meet Mr. Inglis, who had arranged to conduct him round the docks at Cockatoo Island and over the 'Vernon' reformatory-ship, an institution which owes its origin to Sir Henry Parkes. He was much interested with what he saw on board the 'Vernon.' The most hopeless315 characters do not seem beyond the reach of the wholesome influence of the band.

At 1.45 some friends came on board the 'Sunbeam' to lunch, and directly afterwards people began to arrive for an 'At home,' which lasted until 5 p.m. Luckily the weather cleared a little, or I do not know what we should have done to amuse our guests. There were a few gleams of sunshine at intervals, which served to dry the awnings and to make things look more cheerful and comfortable.

At five o'clock we all went to the Legislative Council and heard Mr. Watts speak, and then to the Legislative Assembly, where a debate was also going on. We were afterwards shown over the Chambers and their libraries by Sir Henry Parkes. I admired the dining-room, which was much prettier than that of our own House of Commons. From its balcony there is a magnificent view of Sydney town and harbour. The libraries seemed well furnished with books and looked thoroughly comfortable. It is the oldest Parliament House south of the Line, having been built early in the century. The members all seemed wonderfully fresh and untired, considering that it was 7.30 a.m. before the House rose this morning. The powers of human endurance are possibly strengthened by the fine climate.

Wednesday, July 13th.—I had, as usual, a busy morning, and left at eleven o'clock, with Tom, Mabelle, and Captain Gascoigne, to lunch on board the German man-of-war 'Bismarck.' Captain and Mrs. Bosanquet and several officers were there; and we had a pleasant party, enlivened by the strains of an excellent band. We had to hurry away directly afterwards to be in time for the meeting which the Governor had kindly convened at Government House in connection with the St. John Ambulance Association. The meeting, held in the drawing-room, was well attended and successful. That over, there was only scant time to rest before an early dinner,316 after which we went to a meeting of the Geographical Society at the Freemasons' Hall, where Mr. Bevan the explorer gave us an interesting account of his fourth and latest voyage to New Guinea. These explorations were undertaken, the first in a Chinese junk, the second in a big cutter, the third in a schooner, and the last in the steamer 'Victory.'

Thursday, July 14th.—The children and Tom went out riding, and I had a busy morning with Mr. Wright, working until half-past eleven, when I went with Mr. Bevan to see some interesting New Guinea curiosities at the establishment of Messrs. Burn and Philps, the enterprising firm who sent him out to make his explorations. Tom had made an appointment with Captain Hammill to visit the Goodenough Sailors' Home, but, having a great deal to do on board the 'Sunbeam,' he asked me to go on his behalf and meet the manager and the committee of the institution. We had great difficulty in finding the place, and, after driving half over Sydney without discovering its whereabouts, went to the town-hall for information, and were there directed to two houses—Trafalgar House, and the Goodenough Home, established by Sir Anthony Hoskins when he was out here as Commodore. The houses in both cases are small, but look beautifully clean.

Mr. Shearston, the manager, seems a perfect enthusiast, and too much cannot be said in praise of his self-denial. He has given up the whole of his private house, except one bedroom and the tiniest little scrap of an office, for the purposes of the Home. Truly the promoters of the movement deserve every assistance in their good work; and it makes one feel inclined to help them to secure the new site so urgently required, when it is seen how earnestly they labour in the good cause themselves. They not only take in good characters, but go into the streets at night and pick up sailors, no matter how intoxicated they may be. They put them to317 bed, and endeavour to send them back to their ships in the morning, so far recovered as to escape reprimand and perhaps dismissal. The inspection of this institution took some time, and on our way back we passed the proposed new site for the Home.

Captain Hammill and Mr. Bevan lunched with us on board the 'Sunbeam,' and later on the yacht was shown to a large number of people. After Lady Carrington's 'At home' in the afternoon, Tom, Tab, and Captain Gascoigne went to dine at the Yacht Club, and we had a quiet dinner, after which I did a good deal more work with Mr. Wright.

Friday, July 15th.—An early start had to be made this morning in order to meet Sir Henry Parkes at the station at nine o'clock. Tom, Baby, and I were the only members of the party who turned up, and we found that Mr. Salomons and the Chinese Commissioners had been invited to accompany us. Precisely at nine we left the station in a comfortable saloon carriage, and, passing through the suburbs of Sydney, reached Parramatta at 9.30. This is one of the oldest townships in New South Wales. Conspicuous in the landscape rise the double spires of its handsome church, which is more than a hundred years old. The township has for years past derived considerable importance from its wool trade and manufactures; and has now an excellent fruit trade, which has sprung up quite lately. Fruit-orchards surround the town, and the orange groves look bright and green and beautiful with their shiny leaves and globes of golden fruit. It was almost accidentally that oranges were first grown here. The unexpected success of the first few orange-pips, which grew and prospered amazingly, led to the industry being taken up, and splendid orange groves now surround the town.

Waterfall Gully Waterfall Gully

After leaving Parramatta our way still lay through orchards and vineyards, until we reached Seven Hills Grove, commanding a beautiful view. Thence we went on to Blacktown, which318 takes its name from the large number of aboriginals who formerly lived in the neighbourhood; but they are now almost extinct. At intervals we either crossed or ran alongside of the old bullock-track, now a good high road, to Bathurst. Bathurst can now be reached in a few hours from Sydney. In the old times it took four days to get there by coach, and much longer, of course, by bullock team! We crossed a large river, the Nepean, passing through some charming fern-gullies, and soon afterwards reached the zigzags of the railway. They are so abrupt, that instead of the train turning round, it is alternately pulled and pushed up the steep incline. This seems to me a dangerous plan, and it certainly does not economise labour or steam force. It was interesting to find at one of the stations that the engine-driver who was taking the train up had319 worked for Mr. Brassey for many years in France and elsewhere, had married Tom's nurse, and had danced with me at the ball given in the engine-sheds at Shrewsbury at the great fête on the occasion of our marriage. At another place where we stopped the station-master for many years occupied a similar position at Aylesford, near my brother-in-law's place. They were both anxious to come and see the yacht, and I was rather amused to hear at lunch that while we were going up the mountain they had immediately returned to Sydney and had gone on board.

The view from Springwood is beautiful, and close by lies Sassafras, or 'Flying Fox' Gully, so called from the number of flying foxes found there. We next passed Falconberg, Sir Henry Parkes's place, and went on to Lawoon, where we stopped a short time, and where a man brought us some curious little black snakes—great pets at present. Not far from here are the beautiful Wentworth Falls, and the views became superb; I had not expected anything half so lovely. Distant glimpses of undulating forests were interrupted by abrupt sandstone cliffs, so steep that it was impossible not to believe a large stream ran beneath them. There is no river here, however, although the many small creeks and rivulets make beautiful falls, tumbling over the sandstone cliffs through luxuriant creepers and tropical ferns. It is impossible to exaggerate the beauty of the scene. The charm of the landscape was the really Indian blue of the distant hills, from which they derive their name of Blue Mountains. It is not a blue haze, but a vivid blue, with tints varying from darkest indigo to palest cerulean blue; but the colour is everywhere intense, and there are no half-tones. Perhaps one of the most attractive views is that just before reaching Katoomba, nearly 3,500 feet above the sea-level. The train was stopped before reaching the station to let us admire the distant landscape. I should have liked to stay for hours.320

Katoomba Katoomba

Further on is Blackheath Hill, from which the view is said to be the finest in the whole of the Blue Mountains, though some maintain that the outlook from the big zigzag near Lithgow Down is still finer. On the return journey we had to wait nearly half an hour at Blackheath, and as I was not able to walk far I utilised the time by taking photographs. But no sun-picture can ever give the least idea of this scenery. Its finest effects require321 the brush of the painter. On our return journey the noonday sun had dispersed the mists, and all the delicate details of the more distant landscapes were brought clearly into view. We travelled at a terrible pace, and the sharpness of the curves threatened every moment to send the train off the line. These sudden turns and jerks had the effect of making us all rather uncomfortable, and poor Baby and I felt quite sea-sick. The sensation was the same as when the ship makes a deep curtsy and seems to leave you behind as she dips into the waves!

There is a branch line at Katoomba to the Yenoolan or Fish River Caves, which I should have liked to have visited had there been more time. I had to console myself with the reflection that I had seen the caves at Adelsberg, Neptune's Caves in Sardinia, the caves at Moulmein, and other vast limestone caves in various parts of the world.

After passing Sir Alfred Stephen's magnificent place we reached Falconberg, and by this time I felt so tired that I was truly glad of my carrying-chair. I do not think I could have walked even the short distance between the station and the house. Arrived there, I was obliged to ask leave to lie down instead of going to see the beautiful fern-glens with the rest of the party. It was a great disappointment. I was able, however, to enjoy the lovely distant view from the verandah, as well as the closer view of the rocky sandstone cliffs and fern-clad gullies; and I could hear the mocking note of the rarely seen lyre-bird, the curious cachinnation of the laughing jackass, and the occasional distant note of the bell-bird. Even this brief rest amidst these pleasant surroundings refreshed me greatly, and I felt much better when later on we resumed our journey. The engine-driver was told to go slowly round the sharp curves, and we were spared a repetition of the unpleasant experience of the morning. We arrived in Sydney a little after six, feeling much indebted to Sir Henry Parkes for his great kindness.322

There was no time to think of rest, for I had to dress immediately and go with Tom, Mabelle, and others to the Ambulance meeting at the town-hall. It was a very good one, and afterwards the committee of the Williamstown and Port Melbourne Sailors' Home presented me with a testimonial, in order, as they said, to express their gratitude for what we have been able to do for them. Tom and Mabelle went on from the meeting to Mrs. Tooth's ball.

Saturday, July 16th.—I awoke feeling so tired that Dr. Hoffmeister made me remain in bed till the middle of the day in order to keep quiet, though I contrived to get through much work with pen and pencil.

Lunch was ordered early, and a little after two we went on board the yacht to receive the ladies of the Wollahra centre of the St. John Ambulance Association, to whom, according to previous arrangement, I presented certificates. At half-past three the contractors who gave Tom the charming picnic up the Hawkesbury River last Saturday[5] came on board with their wives and lady friends, and were soon followed by the members of the Royal Sydney Yacht Club and their friends. The boys' band from the 'Vernon' played extremely well during the afternoon, the music and brilliant sunshine adding cheerfulness to the proceedings. When the general company had left, the boys had a hearty meal of tea and cake, and were delighted at being shown over the yacht.

Tom and I were obliged to hurry away at half-past four in order to see the Naval Brigade at exercise, under the command of Captain Hixson. A very interesting sight it proved to be. Their drilling and marching past were admirable, as were also their volley and file firing; while the rapidity with which they formed into rallying squares to resist cavalry was really marvellous. Towards the close of the proceedings it was growing dusk, and the bright-coloured tongues of flame323 from the rifles showed sharply against the dark blue sky. Tom presented the medals to the men and made them a speech; and after all was over we returned to Government House.

Sunday, July 17th.—Tom and Mabelle went on board H.M.S. 'Nelson' at 10.30 a.m. for church-service, and then on to H.M.S. 'Opal,' where they met Admiral and Mrs. Fairfax, and Captain and Mrs. Bosanquet, and a few other friends.

Cook's Monument, Botany Bay

Cook’s Monument, Botany Bay

The day turned out so lovely that I was persuaded to go round the Botanical Gardens in a bath-chair. I admired immensely the taste with which these gardens are laid out, and the skill with which a great portion of the site has been reclaimed from the sea. What seems so puzzling in this climate is the existence of tropical, semi-tropical, and temperate plants side by side. I saw violets, geraniums, roses, strelitzias, in full bloom, some growing under the shade of palms from Ceylon, Central Africa, and the warmest parts of North Australia,324 while others flourished beneath the bare branches of the oak, beech, birch, and lime trees of the old country.

In the afternoon I had intended to go to the cathedral with Lady Carrington, but felt so unwell that I was obliged to lie down for a time, and then sit in the sun and try to recruit. I had, however, to go to bed at five; but I made an effort and got up again at seven in order to appear at our last dinner at this charming house, where we have spent so many happy days and received so much kindness. After dinner we had a long talk over new and old times, and all felt quite sad at the prospect of the inevitable parting which must come to-morrow.


Signal Station, Newcastle

Signal Station, Newcastle


NEW SOUTH WALES (continued).

Monday, July 18th.—Lovely sunrise—the last we shall see, alas! in this beautiful place. Very busy; rather a worrying morning; so much to settle and arrange. Did some final shopping with the children. Met Lord Shaftesbury at lunch. Went off to the 'Sunbeam,' feeling quite sad that the moment of departure had at last arrived. The Admiral came on board 'Sunbeam' at the last moment, bringing some violets as a farewell offering. Sailed slowly away, and gradually lost sight of the Heads in the darkness.

Tuesday, July 19th.—At half-past twelve Tom came below to announce our arrival off the port of Newcastle. The wind326 had been so fresh and fair that we made a smart run of seven hours, sighting the lights at Nobby Head at about half-past ten. Our head was then put off the land, and we hove to, to wait for the tug. This is a process which to the old salt seems a pleasure nearly equal to that of going ashore, at all events to dropping anchor in a well-sheltered harbour. Though I certainty cannot call myself an inexperienced sailor, it appears to me to be the acme of discomfort. Even in a heavy gale it affords but slight relief from the storm-tossed motion of the ship. On the present occasion it was a change from pleasantly gliding along through the water at a speed of nine or ten knots an hour to a nasty pitching motion which made us all very wretched. Everything began to roll and tumble about in a most tiresome manner; doors commenced to bang, glasses to smash, books to tumble out of their shelves, and there was a general upset of the usually peaceful equilibrium of the yacht. So unpleasant was this, that I suggested to Tom that, instead of waiting outside for the reception tug, we should get up steam and go into harbour at daylight so as to have a few hours' rest. This we did, and glided into the harbour precisely at 5.30 a.m., anchoring just off the railway-pier, and quite taking the good people of Newcastle by surprise. The town presented a great contrast to its namesake at home, for the morning dawned bright and lovely, with hardly a smoke-wreath to intercept the charming view. We looked out on a noble river with a busy town on its banks and low hills in the background.

About eight o'clock the chairman of the reception committee, Lieutenant Gardner, of the Royal Naval Brigade, came on board to arrange the order of the proceedings. Everybody was most kindly anxious to show us everything there was to be seen, but Tom thought the lengthy programme would be too much for my strength, and suggested that the original arrangement should be adhered to. Punctually at half-past327 ten the Mayor and Corporation came on board to give us a cordial welcome and present an address. At 11.15 we embarked in two steam-launches and went up the harbour, which looked gay and beautiful, the port being crowded with shipping. We were told, however, that it is not nearly so full as it used to be a year or two ago. They say that bad times have affected this like every other place, and that only a quarter of the number of vessels are in harbour now, compared to the returns of this time last year.

Kangaroo-foot Kangaroo-foot (Arrigozanthus)

Our first visit was to the hydraulic cranes, by which a ship can take in a thousand tons of coal in ten hours. From the cranes we went a little further up the harbour, to the landing-place, where a dense crowd eagerly awaited us. Carriages were in readiness, but Tom rather upset the plans by his usual wish to walk instead of going in state in a coach. I fear he severely tried the lungs and legs of his entertainers by taking them at a brisk pace up a steep hill to the high-level reservoir. As soon as I got into the328 carriage a basket of fragrant violets was given to me by the school children of Lampton, one of the collier townships in the neighbourhood. We drove past the reserve and up to the reservoir, from which there is a fine view of the town and surrounding country. We stayed a long time at the top of the breezy hill watching the dark blue waves turn to pale green as they curled their white-crested heads into great rollers and dashed against the steep cliffs of the many little headlands and promontories of the bay. Looking in another direction, the view extends over the rich alluvial plain which surrounds Newcastle, thickly studded with houses and colliery townships. One new colliery has been started quite close to the shore, and not improbably it will be carried, like the old Botallack mine in Cornwall, right under the sea, where the richest seam of coal runs. While we were taking in the characteristic features of the landscape the sun became so powerful, in spite of a cold wind, that umbrellas and sunshades were found necessary.

After leaving the reservoir we drove through another quarter of the town. Every house had at its door a smiling group of people who greeted us warmly. Leaving the town, we went on to Nobby Head. The position is fortified, and garrisoned with a company of the Permanent force. From this point the town is better seen than from the reservoir, and there is a good prospect of the entrance to the harbour. Though it was comparatively calm to-day, the waves rolled in with great force; and it is said that in bad weather the sea is perfectly frightful. Just inside the Heads, not thirty yards from the shore, a small black buoy marks the spot where a steamer went down with every soul on board, not only in sight of land, but actually in port. While Tom was inspecting we rested in the signal-station and talked to the signalman.

On leaving the fort we drove to Mr. Black's wool-shed, where the various processes of dumping and preparing the329 wool for shipment were explained to us. It is wonderful to see how the bulk of a bale can be reduced by hydraulic pressure. The shed is perfectly empty at this moment, but in a few weeks it will be at its fullest, for the shearing season has already commenced. To-day its ample space was utilised to hold a large luncheon-party, at which a number of ladies and gentlemen were present. The speeches at this banquet, though short, were good. Having partaken of their hospitable entertainment, we were conducted by our kind hosts into a train which was waiting, literally, at the door of the shed, and were taken off, more or less through the streets of the town, to the Newcastle Colliery Company's Works.

As soon as we cleared the suburbs the country became very pretty, and the place where we left the train, to descend the coal-mine, was really quite romantic, and entirely different to what one sees in the Black Country at home. There were several charmingly designed triumphal arches for us to pass under, all made of semi-tropical flowers and palms. The contrast between these flowers and plants and the brisk keen mountain air, blowing cold and fresh in spite of the hot sun, was remarkable. After admiring the beauty of the various specimens of flowers, and inspecting the works at the pit's mouth—where men were hard at work filling skips and emptying them into trucks waiting for their loads—some of the party got into the cage and descended 400 or 500 feet into the bowels of the earth. A few of the ladies declared they felt nervous; but there was really nothing to make them so except the total darkness. Arrived at the bottom, we found many miners with candles stuck in the front of their hats, and carrying lamps of the simplest construction, a piece of waste stuck into the spout of an ordinary can filled with what is called China oil (a decoction of mutton fat), waiting to light us on our darksome path. Several trucks were ready prepared, into one of which I got with the children, and we330 started, a large and merry party. On our way in we met all the miners coming out, for they leave off work at 3.30 in order to be at the pit's mouth at four, only working eight hours a day.

All mines bear a greater or less resemblance to each other, whether they contain black diamonds, like the one in which we then found ourselves, white diamonds, gold, silver, tin, copper, gypsum, or any other mineral. There is the same descent in a cage, the same walk through workings—higher or lower, as the case may be—or ride in a trolly or truck along lightly-laid rails, and the same universal darkness, griminess, and sloppiness about the whole affair, which render a visit, however interesting, somewhat of an undertaking. This mine seemed to contain a particularly good quality of coal, and the sides shone and glistened in the lamplight as we passed along them. Our walk through the levels of pit 'B' was much longer than I had expected, and must have been quite half a mile. The temperature was always over 80°, the atmosphere sometimes very bad, and the walking rather uneven. Thousands, not to say millions, of cockroaches of portentous size enlivened if they did not add to the pleasure of the walk. We passed a great many horses, in good condition, going back to their stables for the night. They are, it is said, very happy down in the pit; so much so, that when during the Jubilee they were taken up for three days' holiday, there was the greatest difficulty in preventing them from returning to the pit's mouth, at which men had to be stationed to drive them back for fear they might try to put themselves into the cages and so tumble down the shaft. Horses very quickly adapt themselves to circumstances; and I dare say the garish light of day was painful to their eyes, and that they were anxious to return from the cold on the surface of the ground to the even temperature of 80° in the pit.

Our walk was a long and weary one, and I felt thankful when we approached the pit's mouth and could breathe cooler331 and purer air. Our hosts were anxious that I should go a little further; but I could not do so, and sank down into a chair to rest. The others went on, as I thought, to see some other workings; but I afterwards heard that they soon reached a beautiful room hollowed out of the solid coal, with sides like ebony, and sparkling with black diamonds. The walls were decorated with arches and cleverly arranged geometrical patterns, formed of the fronds of various kinds of Adiantium, an inscription with cordial words of welcome being traced in the same delicate greenery. In the centre stood a table with light refreshments of various kinds. The entertainment afforded the opportunity for speeches, in which the rapid development of the mining industry of this district was detailed in telling figures, and mutual sentiments of kindness were most cordially conveyed. At the pit's mouth crowds of women and children had assembled to see us, and a little further off a train was drawn up, filled by ladies and gentlemen who had preferred to wander about park-like glades, while their more energetic friends had made the descent into the coal-mine. The united party—numbering, I should think, nearly one hundred—next proceeded on board the 'Sunbeam,' for a very late five-o'clock tea and a hasty inspection of the vessel. At an early hour I retired to rest, utterly worn out.

Wednesday, July 20th.—Contrary to my usual habit of awaking between four and five o'clock, I was sound asleep when tea was brought at 5 a.m.; and I should dearly have liked to have slept for two or three hours longer, so completely was I exhausted by yesterday's hard work. But it could not be; and after a cup of tea, and a little chat over future plans, I set to work sorting papers, and putting names in books, to be given to our kind hosts of yesterday, in remembrance of our visit. At 7.15 we entered the boat which was waiting alongside, and proceeded to the shore, Tom, as usual, pulling332 an oar. Poor 'Sir Roger,' who has been explosively happy during the past two days at having us on board again, made a desperate effort to stow himself away in the boat, which, unhappily, could not be allowed on account of the quarantine regulations. It seems very hard that the poor doggies can never have a run on shore whilst we are in Australian waters. Their only chance of change and exercise consists in being sent in a boat to some quarantine island for an hour or two.

Arrived at the landing-place, Mr. Gardner, to whom we were much indebted for making our visit to Newcastle so very pleasant, was waiting to take us to the station. We started punctually at the time fixed, and passed through a dull but fertile-looking country, until we reached West Maitland, where I received a charming present of a basket of fragrant flowers. About twelve o'clock we were glad to have some lunch in the train. At Tamworth Mr. King met us with his little girl, who shyly offered me a large and lovely bouquet of violets.

From Tamworth the country became prettier and the scenery more mountainous. At one station there was quite a typical colonial landscape: park-like ground heavily wooded with big gum-trees, and a winding river with a little weir, where one felt it might be quite possible to catch trout. The country continued to improve in beauty, and we saw on all sides evidences of its excellence from a squatter's point of view. At one place a herd of splendid cattle were being driven along the road by a stockman, and we passed many large flocks of sheep. About eight Armadale was reached.

The line from Armadale to Tenterfield is the highest in Australia, and is considered a good piece of engineering work. It is in that respect a great contrast to the line over the Blue Mountains, where the engineers had a comparatively easy task in following the tracks of the old bullock-road.

The country round Tenterfield is something like the New Forest, with fine trees and a good many boggy bottoms.333 About fourteen or fifteen miles from here the local 'Ben Lomond' rises to a height of 4,500 feet. In the clear starlight night we had occasional glimpses of its deep glens and rocky peaks.

Cattle crossing the Darling River

Cattle crossing the Darling River

Thursday, July 21st.—The train reached Tenterfield about one o'clock this morning, and we drove straight to the Commercial Hotel, where we found comfortable rooms and blazing fires. Everything looked clean and tidy, and a cold supper awaited belated travellers, of whom there were many besides ourselves. I was awakened at 7.30 a.m. by the sun shining gloriously through the windows of my room. The air felt delightfully fresh, reminding one of a lovely spring morning in England about April. Soon after eleven came Mr. Walker,334 of Tenterfield, who had kindly called to show us everything worth seeing in the township near his station. His is a large holding, even for Australia, 300 square miles in extent, and stretching fourteen miles in one direction and eighteen in another.

After lunch all the party except the children, who were out riding, started in two waggonettes for Tenterfield Station. The township of Tenterfield, like all new Australian towns, is laid out in square blocks, with corrugated iron houses, and various places of worship for different denominations. The views of the country around are pleasing, and the land looks fairly fertile, and is well wooded, with distant mountains seen through purple haze. We first went to the settlement at the station, where we saw a good thoroughbred horse, 'Cultivator,' who has done well in racing both at home and in the colonies; 'Lord Cleveland' (son of the 'Duke of Cleveland'), a good coach-horse with fair action, eighteen hands high; and a little cart-horse with sloping shoulders, short bone between fetlock and knee, and square back like a thoroughbred shorthorn bull.

From the stables we went to look at the old store which in days gone by used to be sufficient for the needs of the whole neighbourhood for a hundred miles round. Then we proceeded to the wool-shed, built of corrugated iron, the wooden shed having been burnt down. Mr. Walker has about 70,000 head of cattle usually, and from 50,000 to 100,000 sheep, but his stock is somewhat reduced this year on account of the long drought. He has 300 thoroughbred Berkshire pigs, besides some wonderful milch cows and a fine Jersey bull. The cows are much wilder here than they are at home, and Mr. Walker has a most ingenious contrivance for securing the animals for milking. They are driven through a large gate into a passage, which gets narrower and narrower until it reaches a point where the cow can be secured.335

Sheep crossing River

Sheep crossing River

After looking at the station buildings we went into the house, a comfortable cottage residence with a nice verandah all round, and what must be a pretty garden in summer. Even now it is full of violets, and some fine specimens of English trees—oaks, elms, limes, and pines. After tea we went for a second drive all round the township, and up some low hills to get a view of the town from a distance and of the mountains from a different point of view. Next we took a few photographs, and should have taken more had not the focussing-glass of the camera got broken. Then we drove back into the town, and, I think, round almost every street, and saw all the public buildings, which are indeed creditable to such a new and rising township. We dined again at the table d'hôte, and after dinner Mr. and Mrs. Walker called with all sorts of stuffed birds and beasts and other curiosities, which they had kindly brought as a remembrance of our visit. They took off Mabelle to a concert, for which the superior of the convent had sent336 to beg my patronage in the morning. I could not promise to be present, and was much startled during dinner to hear that old-fashioned English institution, the crier, going round with his bell and lustily announcing that a concert 'was to be held this evening under the patronage of Lady Brassey and the Honourable two Miss Brasseys.' He kept walking up and down shouting this out until the concert commenced, and when he disappeared the Salvation Army appeared upon the scene with a brass band, the sounds of which are still ringing in my ears as I am trying to write this, preparatory to going to bed betimes to secure some rest before an early start in the morning.

Friday, July 22nd.—This was evidently not to be a night of rest for me. Between one and two I was awakened by the first arrivals by the mail train. At three o'clock people began to get up and go away, and we could fully appreciate how Australian buildings let in every sound. Between four and five the bugle sounded to call the gallant New South Wales Light Horse to parade. At five o'clock I was called. It was a cold, bright morning, with a hard frost, and as soon as my fire and lamps were lighted I got up and began preparing for the journey. We heard much galloping of horses in the early morning, and soon gentlemen in scarlet uniforms began to appear from various parts. We waited until a quarter to seven, and then, as our proffered escort did not turn up, we had to go to the station without it, for fear of missing the train. Five gallant members of the troop joined us on the way. The commanding officer wore blue undress uniform, and the others were in scarlet. It was amusing, on our way to the station, to see late-comers galloping furiously along the road, and it needed a little judicious delay to enable the scattered troopers to collect themselves and form into line. At the station we met our old friends the Chinese Commissioners, looking very curious in travelling-gowns over their national costumes.337

Off the Track

Off the Track

In spite of the strict injunctions we had received to be punctual to seven o'clock, it was 7.15 before the train started. We passed through a pretty but barren country, and reached Warrangarra, on the frontier, in about three-quarters of an hour. There I saw the most extraordinary-looking coaches, dating, I should think, from the time of Queen Elizabeth, with enormous reflecting-lamps, which produced a curious effect in the day, but doubtless are useful for bush-travelling at night. No sooner had we alighted from the train than—I cannot say to my surprise, for familiar faces are always turning up in unexpected places—the grandson of an old wheelwright at Catsfield came to speak to me, inquiring first after our family and then after his own belongings at home.338 I was able to give him good news, and to tell him of the alterations going on at Normanhurst, where he had worked for a long time. He has been out here four years, and did very well until last year, when times became so bad; but things are looking up again, and he told me he had four months' certain work before him, and a very good chance of an opening in the new township as the railway approaches completion. He looks exceedingly well, and says his wife and children also enjoy excellent health. He consulted me about taking the advice of his relations and going home. I told him I thought it would be a great pity to do so at present. Working men in the colonies have a good time if they can only keep sober and are honest and industrious. Indeed those in the old country can scarcely form an idea of how superior the working man's condition is out here. Of course there are quite as many ne'er-do-wells here as in the old country, and I fear that the policy of the Government rather encourages this class, and that there is trouble in store in the near future. The so-called unemployed are mostly utter loafers, who will not give a good day's work for a fair day's wage. They refuse to work for less than eight shillings a day, and many of them if offered work at that price only dawdle about for a few hours and do really nothing.


Rockhampton Lilies

Rockhampton Lilies



AT Warrangarra Station we left the train and stepped through the rail fence which divides New South Wales from Queensland. A walk of about two hundred yards brought us to the Queensland train, where we found a comfortable carriage prepared for our reception. The Chinese Commissioners were in another carriage, and we proceeded as far as Stanthorpe, where they were met by a great many of their fellow-countrymen and carried off to see the extensive tin mines close to the township, where 600 Chinamen are employed. From Stanthorpe we went on climbing up till we reached Thulunbah, upwards of 3,000 feet above the level of the sea. Thence we went on to Warwick, which was reached about 12.40. Here a dear little boy appeared at the station and handed me a large and beautiful bunch of violets. It is very pleasant to receive flowers from people whom I have never before seen, and who only know my books.340

After leaving Warwick we entered on the tract of country known as the Darling Downs, and a splendid stretch of land it is, covered with magnificent stock, both sheep and cattle looking well even now after the long summer drought. How much better they will look in a few weeks' time when the new grass has had time to grow can scarcely be imagined. The first station we passed through was one of the largest private stations on the downs; the next was called the Clifton Station, and belongs to a company. Edenvale Station could be seen in the distance; and on the opposite side stretched a large station belonging to Mr. Tyssen, whose landed estates are valued at five millions. This extensive table-land looks something like the prairies of South America, only with more trees and fewer undulations. The occasional fires we met with on our way heightened the resemblance. On reaching Tawoomba, one of the largest and pleasantest towns in this neighbourhood, a lady came to the carriage door and gave me another bunch of violets. The violets of Australia have more perfume than any we grow in England; certainly they are more fragrant than those one gets on the Riviera.

From Tawoomba the railway rapidly descends, dropping as much as 1,300 feet in ten miles. The scenery somewhat resembles that of the Blue Mountains, and is even more beautiful. The exquisite effects produced by the waning daylight lent a peculiar charm to this landscape. The forest close to us looked dark and sombre, whilst the valley further off was bathed in sunlight, and in the dim distance the mountains over which we had passed early in the day faded into a delicious pale blue chiaroscuro. The banks beneath or above us were cleft by little gullies, with struggling rivulets, edged by delicate ferns and strange plants. The railway stations even seemed prettier and more homelike than any we have yet seen in Australia. They were surrounded by gardens, and quite overgrown with creepers. The line must have been expensive to341 make, and evidently required great engineering ability. A more direct line could perhaps have been constructed which would have saved heavy gradients and much rock-cutting.

Fern Forest

Fern Forest

At Helidon Mr. Laidby joined the train. He had been late for the train at Tawoomba and had ridden down to Helidon, the train taking one hour and a quarter to do the twelve miles. I was sorry to hear that he and his mother had342 been summoned from Brisbane to see a brother who was some 400 miles off in the bush suffering terribly from rheumatic fever. The sick man had been carried to a civilised place by some bushmen, who were nursing him day and night. I am happy to say he is now in a fair way to recovery. Mrs. Laidby is already a great supporter of the St. John Ambulance Association, and declares herself more than ever convinced of its utility.

I caught a severe cold on my arrival at Brisbane, and have been in bed for three days. I have therefore nothing to chronicle, and shall accordingly make use of Tom's diary for that time:—

'July 20th.—Returned on board the "Sunbeam," and cast off from the buoy, making sail for Brisbane with a fresh breeze from the north-west.

'July 21st-22nd.—We continued under sail with variable winds and generally fine weather. The chief features of the fine stretch of coast between Newcastle and Brisbane are the Boughton Islands, Cape Hawke, a densely wooded promontory rising to the height of 800 feet, and the Solitary Islands, a detached group scattered over a space of 22 miles in a north and south direction, at a distance of four to six miles from the shore. A light is exhibited from the south Solitary, and a signal establishment is kept up. We communicated with this isolated port. An islet adjacent to the south Solitary Island is remarkable for a large natural arch, which the ceaseless breaking of the sea has opened through the rock.

'Passing north from the Solitaries we again closed with the coast at Cape Byron. The scenery is magnificent. The coast range attains to a great elevation. Mount Warning, the loftiest peak, rises to a height of 3,840 feet, and is visible fully sixty miles. It was our guiding mark in the navigation of the coast for a space of twenty-four hours. At Danger Point the343 boundary line between Queensland and New South Wales descends to the coast from the high summits of the Macpherson Range.

'July 23rd.—At noon we were off the entrance to the narrow channel which divides Stradbroke Island from Moreton Island, tearing along at twelve knots an hour, under lower canvas only, with a strong wind off the land and smooth water. It was a splendid bit of yachting. We passed a steamer which had come out with the Mayor and a large party from Brisbane to meet us. They welcomed us to Queensland with hearty cheers, to which we cordially responded. We stood in close under the land and followed the high coast of Moreton Island. Its northern extremity is a fresh, verdure-clad, and well-wooded point of land, on which stands a lighthouse. On this sunny, breezy day the scenery of this fine coast was quite beautiful.

'Off the north end of Moreton Island we took a pilot, and proceeding under steam arrived at 10 p.m. off Government House, Brisbane, a distance of 50 miles from Cape Moreton. The navigation from the bar of the river to Brisbane, a distance of 25 miles, is extremely intricate. Everything has been done which it is possible to do, by leading lights at frequent intervals, to assist the pilots; but we passed a steamer of the British India Company—which had entered the river an hour ahead of the 'Sunbeam'—aground on a bank, from which she was not floated until after a delay of two days.'

Monday, July 25th.—In the afternoon drove to 'One-tree Hill,' a richly-wooded height, commanding a splendid view of Brisbane, and of the far-extending range of mountains running parallel with the coast. On our return to Government House the horses bolted, the carriage was smashed to pieces, one of the horses was fearfully injured, and we had a narrow escape from a fatal accident.

Tuesday, July 26th.—After a busy morning, went on344 board the Queensland Government gunboat. The Governor, Mr. and Mrs. de Burgh Persse, and one or two others, came to lunch on board the 'Sunbeam,' and I had an 'At home' afterwards.

Wednesday, July 27th.—We all rose early and started by the 9.30 train, with the Governor, Sir Samuel Griffith, the Mayor, and a large party, for the first Agricultural Show ever held at Marburg. The train ran through a pretty country for about an hour, to Ipswich, an important town, near which there is a breeding establishment for first-class horses. On reaching the station we were received by a number of school children, who sang 'God save the Queen' and then presented Mabelle and me each with a lovely bouquet. After some little discussion over arrangements we were packed into various carriages and started off, the Governor's carriage of course leading the way. The horses of our carriage appeared somewhat erratic from the first, and soon we were nearly brought to a standstill against the trunk of a large tree. Fortunately the eucalyptus has so soft a bark that it tore off, and we did not break anything. We shaved the next big tree in our road by a hair's-breadth, and then discovered that the reins were coupled in an extraordinary manner. Having rectified this mistake, we proceeded on our way rejoicing; but again we were on the point of colliding with a monarch of the forest, when one of our own sailors who was on the box of the carriage seized the reins and pulled the horses round. Tom remarked that it was rather stupid driving. The man who was driving (a German) said, 'Not at all, sir: the horses have never been in harness before.' When the other carriages came up we changed into a less pretentious vehicle, drawn by quieter horses.

'Marburg is an interesting German settlement, formed in the last twenty years. The settlers have, by the most laborious efforts, cut down the dense scrub with which this part of345 the country was covered. Their frugality, their patience under many privations, and their industry have been rewarded. They grow maize, sugar, tobacco, and vegetables, but their cattle seem to be the most thriving and successful part of their business. In some seasons want of water, and in every season the heavy rainfall at the period when the grain is coming to maturity, are serious drawbacks to agriculture in this district. On the whole, it may be said that Queensland is far more adapted to be a pastoral than an agricultural country.'

Every house in the neat little settlement was decorated, and many triumphal arches had been erected. An incident of a somewhat comic nature occurred at the Show. An address was being presented to the Governor by a man on horseback, who dropped his reins to give more emphasis to his delivery, and his horse, finding itself free, began to nibble the reins of the horses attached to the Governor's carriage. A general scrimmage seemed imminent, of which the man on horseback took not the least notice. He went on reading the address with the most imperturbable countenance, until two Volunteers rushed to the horses' heads and separated them. The Show was duly opened by the Governor, and we waited to see some of the animals tried. Luncheon was served in a sort of half-house, half-tent, and some very good though short speeches were made. We drove back by another road to Rosewood in order to enable us to see more of the scenery of this fine country.

But our adventures were not over for the day. In going down a steep hill our driver did not allow quite enough room, and caught the back of one of the long low German waggons which are used in this district. The hind wheels came off, and a woman and child who were seated in the waggon were thrown into the road shrieking and screaming. Fortunately they proved to be more frightened than hurt, and the waggon having been repaired and the child and its mother346 comforted with pictures and sugar-plums which I happened to have with me, they went on their way, and we reached the station a few minutes late, but picked up our time before getting back to Brisbane. After a hasty dinner I had to be off to an Ambulance meeting kindly convened by the Mayor. Considering the short notice given, the meeting was a wonderful success. Tom, Lady Musgrave, and Mabelle went on to the Liedertafel Concert afterwards, and the rest of the party to the Jubilee Singers' entertainment, both of which were excellent.

German Waggon

German Waggon

Thursday, July 28th.—Was called early, and passed a very busy morning. At ten o'clock I went for a drive in Mr. Stevenson's drag to his house at Fernberg, from which there is a good view over Brisbane and its surroundings. Münie came with me, and the rest of the party rode in the same direction, but went further than we did. At twelve we received an address, very prettily decorated with seaweed, from347 the Sailing Club of Brisbane. We were to have embarked in the 'Sunbeam' at half-past twelve, but unfortunately two tubes of the boiler had burst, and we had to wait for some time while they were being repaired. When we started the people assembled on the high banks cheered us all the way down. But we were a good deal delayed by the faulty tubes, and did not leave the mouth of the river till dusk. The scenery of the bank on each side is pleasing, and we all enjoyed the sail down.

Friday, July 29th.—We sailed merrily all night and all to-day, with a fair fresh breeze; but there was a considerable roll, and having been on shore so long, we more or less felt the motion. During the night the question of stopping at Maryborough was definitely settled, and we sailed outside Sandy or Fraser Island instead of inside it. This prevented us from accepting the kind and hospitable invitation of the Mayor and inhabitants of the township. At noon we had run 204 knots, and were able to shape our course more towards land, the water becoming smoother with every knot we made. We saw Elliott Island, where if it had been calm it would have been very nice to stop. It swarms with turtle and sea-birds of every kind, which are reported to be perfectly tame, as the island is seldom visited. Cape Bustard was made later on, and we had a quieter evening; but about 10 p.m. the yacht began to roll again heavily, the wind having shifted a little, obliging us to alter our course.



Saturday, July 30th.—At 5 a.m. we dropped anchor in Keppel Bay, but had to wait for the tide to rise. We landed in the course of the morning in the 'Gleam,' the 'Flash,' and the 'Mote,' and made quite a large party, with dogs, monkey, and photographic apparatus. We found a convenient little landing-place, and looked over the telegraph station and post-office, which are mainly managed by the wife of the signalman, Aird, an honest Scotchman, who knew me from348 my books, and was very anxious to give us a real hearty welcome to his comfortable little house. The first thing he offered us each was a tumbler of delicious new frothy milk, the349 greatest possible treat. After sending off a telegram or two, and posting some letters, I was carried up to the lighthouse where the custom-house officer lives, and from which there is a fine view over land and sea. When the tide rose we returned on board, and about half-past two all the inhabitants of the station came on board to see the yacht of which they had read and heard so much, and which they were glad to see, as they said, 'with their own eyes.' At half-past three our visitors returned ashore, and we had to start up the river. A little higher up, the harbour-master of Rockhampton met us, bringing many telegrams from various people in that town as well as in Brisbane, all sent with the object of making our visit pleasant.

Crinum asiaticum Crinum asiaticum

We arrived at Rockhampton at 9.30 p.m. The cold I caught at the last Ambulance meeting has been gradually increasing, and became so bad to-day that I was obliged to go to bed early and take strong measures to try and stop it; so that when the Mayor of Rockhampton came on board to welcome us I was not visible, nor did I see the Naval350 Volunteers who were waiting on the bank to receive Tom. It is very pleasant to find how warmly he is welcomed everywhere as the originator and founder of the Naval Volunteer movement.

Sunday, July 31st.—I stayed on board all day, so cannot describe Rockhampton from my own knowledge of it. The others all went to church; Mr. Ballard, Dr. and Mrs. Macdonald, and Mr. Thompson, the owner of the opal-mines at Springsure, came to lunch, the latter bringing some curious specimens from his quarries. We had service at six o'clock, after which I was glad to go to rest.

Monday, August 1st.—A busy morning, as usual, before starting. We left at 10 a.m. in three waggonettes (or four-wheel buggies, as they are called here) for Mount Morgan, each vehicle being drawn by four horses. Our party occupied two of the waggonettes, and the sailors and luggage filled the third. After passing through the clean and tidy town of Rockhampton, the streets of which, though wide, cannot be called picturesque, we entered on a long stretch of road. I never saw anything so gorgeous as the Thunbergia venusta and Bougainvillea, now in full bloom, which hid most of the verandahs with a perfect curtain of rich orange and glorious purple. The hospital is a fine building on the top of the hill; the grammar-school and several other good-sized public buildings give the whole place a well-to-do air. We crossed a bridge spanning an arm of a lagoon covered with a curious little red weed, out of which rose a splendid lotus lily, known as the Rockhampton Lily. The blossoms are blue, red, and white, and rear their graceful heads above the water in a conspicuous manner, growing sometimes as large as a breakfast-saucer. It was a beautiful morning, and had I not felt unwell with bronchitis, from which I have so long been suffering, I should have enjoyed the drive immensely. About seven miles out we came to a large poultry farm, but I am afraid the venture had not351 proved successful, for the farm looked neglected. Quite a little crowd had assembled in the verandahs of the inn and adjoining store, and the people had hoisted a Union Jack in our honour.

About halfway up the hill we were glad to pull up at a creek to water the horses and sit in the shade. This was just before reaching the 'Crocodile' inn, where several coaches were waiting to change horses. Soon afterwards we passed several mines, or rather reefs, with queer names, such as the 'Hit or Miss,' the 'Chandler,' and the 'Hopeless,' arriving in due time at the Razor-Back Hill. It is indeed well named; for, steep as we had found the little pitches hitherto, this ascent was much more abrupt, and might well be likened to the side of a house. Everybody was turned out of the carriages except me, and even with the lightest buggies and four good strong horses, it seemed as if the leaders must tumble back into the carriage, so perpendicular was the ascent in some places. On one side of the road a deep precipice fell away, and when we passed a cart or met a heavily laden dray coming down from the mines we seemed to go dangerously near the side. Altogether, the drive would not have been a pleasant one for nervous people. Bad and steep as the present road is, however, it cuts off a great piece of the hill, and is quite a Queen's Highway compared to the old road. Having at last reached the summit of the hill and breathed our panting horses, we went on through a park-like country, more or less enclosed, which led to the Mount Morgan territory.

Here the most conspicuous building is the hotel, erected by the company for the convenience of the many visitors to the works. Although not yet finished, it is quite a pretty house, and will accommodate a large number of guests. It stands close to a dam across the mountain stream which flows through the valley, and has for a foreground a refreshing352 lake and bathing-place, formed by the arrested waters. We did not stop here, but crossed the creek and went up to the company's office, where we were warmly welcomed by the practical manager of the mines, Mr. Wesley Hall. The sun was now intensely hot, and it was quite a relief to retire into the shade. I felt very tired; but as they had kindly harnessed two fresh draught horses into the buggy on purpose to take me to the top of the hill, I considered myself bound to go; and off we started, passing enormous stacks of stone taken from the top of the mountain. These blocks are said to be full of ore, but have been allowed to lie so long exposed to air and weather that many plants and creepers, and even some large shrubs, are growing over them. As we climbed up the hills, which became steeper and steeper at each turn, we passed works and furnaces of every description, reaching at last a plateau, from which a fine view opened out beneath us.

The township of Mount Morgan nestles in a pretty valley, and is enclosed by round-topped hills, which are covered with trees. A mile or two further we reached the foot of the steepest hill of all, where the rest of the party found trucks waiting for them, worked by an endless rope, going up and down. Into one of these they soon packed themselves, and were speedily drawn to the top of the hill, while we climbed slowly, and indeed painfully, up by a pretty country road, eventually arriving at the shoot, at the bottom of which three drays were standing. Into these, lumps of stone were being run as fast as possible, and when filled they were taken down to the works, to be quickly replaced by empty return drays. The stone looked exactly like old ironstone, but we were told that it was the richest native gold yet found, having been assayed as high as 99·8 per cent., and selling readily for 4l. 4s. an ounce. To this was added the assurance that half an ounce of gold per ton would pay all working ex353penses. The blacksmith's forge stood a little further on, and then we came to a very narrow woodland path, up which Tom and the sailors carried me in turns, as far as another platform on the hill. Here were several troughs leading to the larger shoot we had seen below, which kept it constantly fed, and also the openings of long tunnels which had been pierced into the very heart of the mountains. These shafts were merely experimental, to make sure that the richness of the ore was not superficial, but extended to a depth of some two hundred feet beneath the ground on which we were standing. It was curious to hear these statements, and look at the surrounding country, which was perfectly free from the defacement of mining operations. The top of the mountain, on a part of which we were standing, had originally been of sugar-loaf form, but its extreme apex has been cut off, and quarrying operations are now going on vigorously. Tons of valuable stone are daily raised to the surface, from which large quantities of gold can be extracted. One blast which took place while we stood there proved nearly fatal to both me and 'Sir Roger.' The stone turned out to be harder than the miners had anticipated, and the fragments blew further than they should have done. One piece missed poor 'Sir Roger's' paw by an inch; and another whizzed past my head within two inches; while a smaller piece hit me on the shoulder with what the manager described as a 'whacking sound,' making me feel quite faint for a few moments.

After strolling about picking up specimens, trying to learn from Mr. Wesley Hall to distinguish between good and bad stone, their differing qualities being to us novices extremely difficult to detect, we sat down quietly to enjoy the view and try to realise the truth of the wonderful stories we had been hearing, which seemed more fit to furnish material for a fresh chapter of the 'Arabian Nights,' or to be embodied in an appendix to 'King Solomon's Mines,' than354 to figure in a business report in this prosaic nineteenth century. Mabelle and I returned slowly to the hotel, which we found clean and comfortable. While I was lying on the sofa, waiting for the others to arrive, a regular 'smash-up' took place outside. Five horses yoked in a timber-waggon (two and two abreast and one leading) were going down a steep bank into the creek below, when the timber suddenly lifted and came on the backs of the wheelers. The animals began kicking violently, getting their legs among the timber; it was extremely difficult to extricate them even with the help of a dozen powerful and willing hands, though everyone near ran to the assistance of the bewildered teamster, who seemed quite unable to cope with the emergency.

Presently an old man—a most picturesque individual—passed slowly by, surrounded by quite a pack of hounds, including lurchers, retrievers, and even curs, as well as some very good-looking, well-bred greyhounds and kangaroo-hounds. On inquiry I found that his business was to patrol the place all night, and prevent intruders coming to take away samples of Mount Morgan ore. The dogs are said to know their business thoroughly, and contrive to be a terror to the neighbourhood without seriously hurting anybody.

Australian up-country hotels are certainly not meant for rest. They are always either built of corrugated iron, which conveys every sound, or of wood, which is equally resonant. As a rule the partitions of the rooms do not reach to the top of the roof, so that the least noise can be heard from end to end of the building. There is always a door at one extremity, sometimes at both, besides a wide verandah, up and down which people stroll or lounge at pleasure. Every landlady appears to have half-a-dozen small children, who add their contribution to the day's noises in the shape of cries and shouts for 'mammy,' who, poor soul, is far too busy to attend to them herself or to spare anyone else to do so.355

Tuesday, August 2nd.—The crushing-mills and the machinery have to be kept working all night, for of course the furnaces are never let out; and before daybreak all the noises of the works began, so that we were up early, and after breakfast went to the chlorination works with Mr. Trinear, the assayer.



The first thing shown us was the stone just as it came from the drays we had watched at work yesterday. This was speedily crushed into powder, baked, and mixed with charcoal. It then passed through another process within the powerful furnaces, which separated the ore from the rock and poured it forth, literally in a stream, golden as the river Pactolus. I never saw anything more wonderful than this river of liquid gold. A little phial held to the mouth of one356 of the taps became just a bottle of gold in solution. By adding hydrochlorate of iron the gold is precipitated in about seventy hours, and the water can be drained off pure as crystal, without a vestige of gold remaining in it. The gold itself is then mixed with borax, put through a further smelting-process, and ultimately comes out in solid nuggets, worth, according to the purity of the gold, from 300l. to 400l. each. The children were very pleased at being able to hold 1,200l. in their hands. Mr. Trinear told me that as the metal comes from the furnaces mixed with charcoal they often obtain as much as 75, and he had got as much as 86, per cent. of gold.

The Mount Morgan Gold Mining Company possess probably the most productive gold-mine in the world. The discovery of the gold-bearing rock, of which the whole mass of Mount Morgan is composed, was made while searching for copper ore. The gold at Mount Morgan is obtained from a lode of decomposed iron pyrites, partly underlying a bed of quartz, and at various points cropping up to the surface. The original discoverers of the ore, and the individuals who supplied the slender amount of capital with which the company commenced operations, have realised great fortunes.

At Mount Morgan the process known as chlorination has been developed on a larger scale than has elsewhere been attempted. It is described as follows:—

'The process of chlorination at Mount Morgan is a very interesting one, and would well repay a visit of inspection by any who are interested in the profitable and economic treatment of auriferous ores. The tailings, as they come from the battery or from the dry crusher, as the case may be, are first of all roasted in eight large furnaces, each with a capacity of putting through eight tons in twenty-four hours. The roasting of the ore in the first place is to free it from the waters of crystallisation and to burn all organic matter out of it. When it leaves the furnaces, it is turned out to cool in a large space,357 between the furnaces and the chlorinising barrels. When it has sufficiently cooled, it is taken on an inclined tramway to the hoppers connected with the chlorination barrels, in which the gas is generated by mingling chloride of lime with sulphuric acid. Water only is added, and the barrels, which are perfectly air-tight, are kept revolving until the gold is thoroughly chlorinated, or, to speak plainly, put into a fluid state. Each barrel contains a charge of about a ton of ore, and it is possible to get through twelve charges in the twenty-four hours.

Mount Morgan

Mount Morgan

'The period for which the barrels are made to revolve averages one and a half hour. When this operation is over the contents of the barrels are discharged into draining-vats, from358 whence the water and the gold, put into a state of solution, are drained into charcoal filters below. Charcoal possesses such an affinity for the chlorine that the gold is rapidly deposited, and the charcoal is so laid in these V-shaped filters that the golden fluid passes through layers, gradually becoming finer towards the bottom, and thus practically all the gold that is dissolved by the chlorine gas in the barrels is caught in the charcoal. So effectual is the process that the refuse from the draining-tubs will not assay more than a pennyweight or a pennyweight and a half to the ton, while the water which drains off from the charcoal filters is pumped back and goes through the process a second time. The contents of the charcoal filters are conveyed straight to the smelting-works. There the charcoal on which the gold has been precipitated is first roasted in furnaces, and the residuum smelted in the usual smelting-pots. After this it is run into ingots of the purest gold.

'Chlorination was originally attempted in the United States. It has been perfected at Mount Morgan. By the ordinary crushing and washing process one ounce to the ton would be extracted from the rock quarried at Mount Morgan. By chlorination every particle of gold is extracted. The product sometimes reaches 17 oz. per ton. The average may be taken at 5 oz. Half an ounce would cover expenses.'

The day turned out lovely, and if my cough had not been so bad, I should have enjoyed the drive down from Mount Morgan. The pitches were just as steep, but they were nearly all downhill, which made our progress seem quicker and pleasanter. The country looked very pretty; the ferns were quite lovely, and the lilies in full bloom. The pleasure of the drive was further marred by the dreadful odours arising from the decaying carcasses of unfortunate bullocks which had been left by the roadside to die from exhaustion. Happily, there were no such horrors at the pretty place where we paused to359 bait our horses—the same at which we had stopped going up yesterday—and we arrived at the railway hotel at Rockhampton at 2.5, and immediately went on board the 'Sunbeam.'

In spite of heavy rain in the afternoon a great many ladies came to see the yacht, and were followed later by the Naval Artillery Volunteers, the Naval Brigade, and other visitors. At 6 p.m. Tom went ashore, accompanied by the children, to review the Naval Brigade, with which he was well pleased. After a hasty dinner at seven, we all went to an Ambulance Meeting in the council-chamber of the town-hall. The heat of the room seemed great on first entering it from the fresh air outside, and I thought I should have fainted before I reached my chair at the farthest end of the room. Presently, however, some doors were opened, and matters improved. The meeting was very satisfactory, a committee being appointed, and several doctors promising to help and give lectures, while many of the people present gave in their names as subscribers. From the Ambulance Meeting we went straight on to the station, where the servants had rigged up very comfortable beds for Baby and me in one and for Mabelle and Münie in another railway-carriage, the gentlemen being provided for in two others. We were soon in bed, and at ten o'clock started for Emerald and Springsure. We should have been most comfortable but for the piercingly cold draughts. The moon shone brilliantly, and I could see from my cot the lightly wooded but flat pastures alternating with miles and miles of bush, with here and there a log hut or a tin house standing in its own little clearing, making an interesting picture as we flew through the district.

Wednesday, August 3rd.—There was still a bright moon, and as we approached Emerald the country, seen by its light, looked most picturesque. At Emerald, the rail to Springsure branches off from the main line to Barceldine. In the early360 morning, as we were passing Fernlee, where the Government line ends, our servants produced some welcome tea. From there we ran on to Springsure, where our arrival caused great excitement, for it was really the opening of the line, ours being the first passenger train to arrive at the township. By about half-past eight we were all dressed, and went to a comfortable inn, some on foot and some in waggonettes, where we breakfasted.

After watching experiments with various horses, to see which were best and quietest, we started in a couple of buggies for the opal-mines, or rather opal-fields, of Springsure. We had not driven far when we came to a fence right across the high road, and had to go some way round over rough ground and across a creek to avoid it. This did not excite any astonishment in the mind of the gentleman who drove us, and he seemed to think it was a casual alteration owing to the new line; but on a dark night the unexpected obstruction might prove inconvenient. When the top of the hill where the opals are to be found was reached, we all got out and set to work to pick up large and heavy stones with traces of opals in them, as well as some fragments of pumice-stone with the same glittering indications. We were shown the remnants of a rock which had been blown up with dynamite to get at a magnificent opal firmly imbedded in it. The experiment resulted in rock, opal, and all being blown into fragments, and nothing more has ever been seen of the precious stone. Our search not proving very successful, we proceeded to the large sheep-station of Rainworth. This fine property originally belonged to Mr. Bolitho, and I was told that it then consisted of 300 square miles of country thoroughly well stocked, with excellent buildings, and—what is to be most valued in this dry and thirsty land—a running stream, which had never been known to be empty, even in a ten years' drought. The question of water becomes a serious considera361tion out here, where every full-grown beast is supposed to drink and waste ten gallons of water a day. The drive to the station was very pleasant. We passed a racecourse, where a little race-meeting was going on. It looked a very simple affair, and we were told that once a year all the sporting population in what Australians call 'the neighbourhood,' extending for some hundred miles around, assemble here to try their nags against one another.

We seem rather unlucky about accidents, for on our way down a steep hill the horses suddenly became restive; and if it had not been that our driver sent them spinning down one hill at full gallop, and up the next, thus leaving them no time for kicking, and preventing the carriage from ever touching them, we should probably have had a repetition of our smash the other day. We did not see a single kangaroo all the way, but passed a number of good-looking cattle and horses. Years ago this country swarmed with game, and was so eaten up that the ground looked as bare as your hand, the pasture being undistinguishable from the roads. By a strenuous effort the settlers killed 30,000 kangaroos on a comparatively small area on the Ekowe Downs, the adjoining station to this, and thousands more died at the fence, which was gradually pushed forward, in order to enclose the sheep and keep out the marsupials.

By-and-by we arrived at a smart white gate in the fence, which a nice little boy dressed in sailor costume, who had accompanied us from Springsure, opened for us. These paddocks held some merino sheep. Some fine timber had been left, so that the station looked more like an English gentleman's estate than any place we have yet visited. We jolted wearily over huge boulders and great slabs of rock, and went up and down tremendously steep pitches in the roads, until at last we arrived at Rainsworth, where we received the warmest welcome from Mr. and Mrs. Todhunter. After luncheon I362 stayed in the verandah and rested, whilst the rest of the party went out to look round the station and the opal-fields.

The view from the verandah of the house up to the Rainsworth mountain was remarkable, its most conspicuous feature being the peculiar-shaped hill, 1,500 feet high, with its top cut off, leaving a table-land, where what is called opal-glass is found. This substance resembles opal in its consistency, except that it is white and transparent and does not possess prismatic colours like imprisoned rainbows. Before we left, Mrs. Todhunter kindly gave me some curious specimens of limestone, stalactites, and stalagmites, picked up on the surface of the black soil in the neighbourhood, besides two very curious little iron balls, joined together like a natural dumb-bell. We left in good time, and had an uneventful drive home. I felt curious to know the value of this fine station, and was told it was 40,000l. This, certainly, if correct, does not seem high for an extra-good station with a comfortable house on it, besides stables, farm-buildings of every possible kind, a well-stocked though rather neglected garden and orchard, a large wool-shed some ten miles off, and a practically inexhaustible supply of water. Besides all this, there are plenty of well-fenced paddocks, containing 30,000 sheep, 200 bullocks, and some horses; also drays and carts, and other farming implements.

On reaching Springsure we found some excitement prevailing on account of a mob of a thousand cattle having passed near the town. These mobs of cattle are obliged by law to travel six miles a day at least, unless they have cows and young calves with them, when the compulsory distance is less. They feed all the way on their neighbours' ground, so to speak, and travel many thousands of miles, occupying months on the journey. A clever stockman loses very few beasts on the way, and such men command high wages. They often363 undertake the journey at their own risk, and are paid only for the number of cattle actually delivered. I was, as usual, too tired to go out again, but the rest of the party set off to see the cattle-camp, and had a long walk over a rough road; but they declared the sight well rewarded them for their trouble. The cattle were preparing to settle down for the night; whilst the camp-fires were just being lit, and beginning to twinkle in the early twilight. On one side a brilliant red sunset glowed, and on the other the moon was rising and shedding her silver light upon the scene. It was so tempting to remain out that the sightseers were rather late for dinner; after which we took up our old quarters in the railway carriages, and started on our homeward journey. This proved much more comfortable than the outward trip, for the railway officials had kindly stopped nearly all the draughts.

The Ford The Ford

Thursday, August 4th.—I awoke about five, and was at once struck by the strange appearance of the moon, which364 did not look so big as usual, and had assumed a curious shape. I gazed at her in a lazy, sleepy way for some time, until it suddenly occurred to me that an eclipse was taking place, whereupon I roused myself and got my glasses. I was very glad not to have missed this, to me, always most interesting sight, especially as I had not the slightest idea that an eclipse would occur this morning. The atmosphere was marvellously clear, and I saw it to absolute perfection.

We reached Rockhampton about 6 a.m., and were put into a quiet siding till eight, by which time we had dressed and were ready to go and breakfast at the comfortable railway hotel. There was just time for a satisfactory talk about arrangements for future movements before eleven o'clock, when the Mayor arrived to take us, in quite a procession of buggies, to the hospital. Here Doctor Macdonald met us, and I was put into a chair and carried through the various wards of an excellently planned and perfectly ventilated building. Everything looked scrupulously clean, and the patients appeared happy and well cared for. Several instances were pointed out to me by Doctor Macdonald in which the St. John Ambulance would have been of great use. I heard of one case of a man who had come down 200 miles with a broken leg, no attempt having been made to bandage it up. The poor fellow arrived, as may easily be imagined, with the edges of the bone all ground to powder and the tissues surrounding it much destroyed. Then there was another case of an arm broken in the bush, and the poor man lying all night in great agony; and again of another stockman who crushed his knee against a tree while riding an unbroken horse. The instances are too numerous to mention where the knowledge of how to make the best of the available means of relief and transport would have saved much needless suffering. There were some good rooms for convalescent patients, besides paying wards.365

Everything looked bright, cheerful, and sunny except the ophthalmic wards, which, if I may use such an expression, displayed an agreeable gloom. Here, all was painted dark green, and the system of ventilation seemed quite perfect, for air without light was admitted and the temperature equalised, this being an important factor in bad cases. Ophthalmia appears to be quite a curse in Australia, as we have already found to our cost, through Tom's suffering from it. There were nice shady verandahs to this part of the hospital, and comfortable chairs for the patients to sit and lounge in, besides a pretty garden. Not far off, in the compound, stood the various quarters for the nurses and servants, and the dead-house, and dissecting-room, with other necessary though painful adjuncts to a hospital. The doctor's cheerful bungalow, also near, was surrounded by a pretty garden.

A rough drive over a bad road took us to the Botanical Gardens, which are enclosed by the most charming fence I have ever seen; or rather by a fence made beautiful by the luxuriant creepers growing over it. A mass of the brilliant blossoms of the orange Thunbergia venusta, purple Bougainvilleas, and ivory-white Baumantia extended from end to end and side to side. This fence encircled a lavish growth of palms of all kinds and shapes and sorts and sizes, and many other tropical plants, which quite overshadowed the common European shrubs. These seem to flourish to perfection in winter here, and include verbenas of all colours, and unusual size and brilliancy; a great profusion of phloxes, the Phlox Drummondi being a perfect weed, and scenting the whole air. These taller flowers were intermixed with mignonette, musk, and many dear old home favourites; while all one side of the garden was taken up by a bush-house full of splendid palms. Ferns, various Alsophilas, Lycopodium scandens, Vanillas, Hoyas, flourished in great variety. Pink and red Bougainvilleas were growing on standards outside, among the orange-366trees, and beyond lay lagoons covered with the far-famed blue, red, and pink lotus-lilies of Rockhampton.

Native Weapons, Queensland Native Weapons, Queensland

The sun became very hot, and I was glad to be carried back to the carriage and to drive straight to the boat, and so on board the yacht to rest, while the remainder of the party went shopping in the town. In the afternoon we all went in the steam-launch to see the Creek Meat Canning Factory—a concern which has lately changed hands, and holds some of the largest contracts in the world for supplying armies and navies with tinned meat. The quality is excellent. Mr. Bertram, the manager, met us at the pier, at which we had considerable difficulty in landing, for the tide was low. After a little time and trouble we managed to reach the shore, and went through the works, which are most interesting. The manufactory stands on the bank of the river close to a pretty lake embosomed amongst hills, and surrounded with paddocks, where the cattle rest after being driven in from distant stations.

We were all safe on board the yacht by 9 p.m., and at ten o'clock the anchor was weighed. The night was fine, and we only stopped at intervals to allow the pilot to reconnoitre, or to wait for a rise of tide. This is a most curious river, and might well be made the scene of a romance by some poetical person. It is only every ten or twelve days that craft drawing over ten feet can get up or down the river, and then only by the light of the moon. By day no large vessel can reach Rockhampton.


Balloon Canvas

Balloon Canvas



Friday, August 5th.—At 1.30 a.m. we anchored off Johnstone Point, and at 8 o'clock we hove anchor and proceeded to the mouth of the Fitzroy River. The pilot left us at 10.30, and we proceeded out to sea under sail. There was a strong wind from the south-east, and I was glad to stay in bed all day. We passed through the Cumberland Isles, and Tom had a rather anxious night, as the navigation was very intricate.

Saturday, August 6th.—The morning broke clear and fine, the fresh breeze still continuing. The scenery during the day was lovely, and I was carried into the deck-house in368 order that I might enjoy it. The views were more like the Inland Sea of Japan than the tropical scenery, made up of cocoa-nut palms, tree-ferns, and coral islands, which I had been looking for. The mountain shapes were very beautiful, as were also the bays and inlets, and the varied colours of the land, sea, and sky gave brilliancy and effect to the landscape. The east coast of Australia at this season of the year is a perfect cruising-ground for yachtsmen. The Great Barrier reef, extending for a distance of 1,000 miles from Swain Reefs to Cape Yorke, protects the coast from the heavy swell of the Pacific. The steady breezes from the south-east are favourable for sailing, especially in the direction in which we are steering.

At 4 p.m. we were off Pine Island, a small islet of the Percy group, on which a light has been established. From Pine Island onwards to the Whitsunday Passage the navigation recalls the experiences of many pleasant summers on the west coast of Scotland. The inner route, which we followed, passes between numberless rocks and islands. The Percy Isles form a distinct group, extending twenty miles from north to south, and eight miles from east to west. To the westward of the Percy Isles a still larger group has received the collective name of Northumberland, the several islands being distinguished by familiar Northumbrian names. Advancing northwards, at a distance of some sixty miles from the Percy group, the Cumberland, Sir James Smith, and Whitsunday groups form a continuous archipelago on the eastern side of the passage. The highest peaks attain an elevation little short of 1,000 feet. The islands are for the most part richly wooded. Some peaks are clothed with timbers to the summit, others are smooth and grassy, a few are bare of vegetation. The rocks are magnificent. Paternoster rises sheer from the water to a height of more than 900 feet.

'Turning from the sea to the mainland, the coast-range369 at a short distance inland forms a continuous barrier, varying in height from 3,000 to upwards of 4,000 feet. At Whitsunday Passage, through which we passed on the afternoon of August 6th, the line of coast is broken by Cape Conway, which, at its south-eastern extremity, rises to a height of 1,637 feet. A chain of peaks extends northwards from Cape Conway to Mount Drysander, and forms a fine amphitheatre of hills on the western side of the Whitsunday Passage. On the eastern side is a group of islands, of which Whitsunday, the largest, is eleven miles long, while Whitsunday Passage is twenty miles in length. At its narrowest part it is contracted to a breadth of two miles. On the mainland side the passage opens out into the fine natural harbour of Porte Molle. On the eastern side the line of shore is broken by the bays of Whitsunday Island, and the channels which divide it from the smaller islands, by which it is completely surrounded.'

Cape Gloucester was reached in about three hours after we had issued from the Whitsunday Passage. Rounding the cape, we anchored for the night close under the land.

Sunday, August 7th.—The morning dawned clear and bright, and we sent off two men in the dinghy to land on Gloucester Island. They took the dogs for a run ashore, and I asked them to collect what they could in the way of shells or greenery. They did not bring back much of either, but reported that the island was very pretty and had a nice sandy shore, with forests running down almost to the water's edge, and quantities of parrots and parrakeets. We had church at half-past ten, and directly after service went across to Bowen, anchoring a short distance from H.M.S. 'Paluma.' Bowen is a small town, but the harbour is spacious. The sea was rather rough, and we found some difficulty in communicating with the shore; but after lunch all the party landed in the large cutter. I was sorry to hear that Bowen is rapidly dwindling and losing its trade; the inhabitants hope, however,370 to recover some of their former vitality when once the network of railways is extended to their little town. Later on the officers of the 'Paluma' came on board, and seemed pleased to meet people lately from Europe; for they have been on this station several years, surveying the Barrier Reef. Our own shore party returned late, having much enjoyed their expedition and the long walk. They had picked up a good many curiosities, including one of the largest and finest hawksbill-turtle shells I had ever beheld. It had been most carefully polished by a lighthouse-keeper on one of the reefs, who had caught the creature himself. A great many telegrams were received this evening, all referring to the various kind arrangements proposed for us at Townsville and elsewhere.

Monday, August 8th.—Weighed anchor at daybreak, and were pushed merrily forward by strong S.E. breezes. We sailed swiftly up the coast as far as Townsville—a pretty-looking town of foreign appearance, with its wharves and business-houses close down on the beach, whilst the villas and private residences stand on the little nooks and corners of a hill at the back. The officers of H.M.S. 'Myrmidon,' which was lying in harbour, soon came on board to see us. They had broken their rudder-head outside the Barrier Reef, where they too were hard at work surveying, and had come into Townsville for repairs. The anchorage proved rolly, there being no protection whatever, and I had rather an uncomfortable night.



Tuesday, August 9th.—At daybreak Tom moved the yacht out to the shelter of Magnetic Island, where the coal-hulks lie, some six miles off Townsville. There we kept boxing about all the morning, under the mistaken idea that it was quite smooth. Meanwhile some supplies were taken on board; but as I was not well enough to undertake the long expeditions which had been planned, and the rest of the party declared that it would not be possible to go without me, they were371 given up. After landing and taking a walk through Townsville, the shore-going people pronounced it to be quite as clean-looking and prosperous as Bowen, but with more business going on. The town, which has a population of 12,000, is built on a tongue of land between the sea and Ross Creek. It consists of one main street containing banks, public offices, counting-houses, and well-supplied stores and shops. The bustle in the streets and the flourishing and prosperous appearance everywhere were quite cheering. Townsville owes its prosperity to its railway, which is already opened to a distance of two hundred miles into the interior, and which has made it the port for a wide area of pastoral country and for several promising gold-fields.

Stowing Foretopsail Stowing Foretopsail

The bay of Townsville is open, and the shoal water extends some two miles from the beach. A breakwater is in course of construction, and dredging operations are being prosecuted with energy, so that the defects of the port will in course of time be remedied. We started with the same strong trade-wind up the coast, passing through some pretty picturesque372 islands and roads, hoping to anchor at Dungeness for the night. Finding it impossible to get up there before dark, we anchored in Challenger Bay, under shelter of Palm Island, shortly after sunset. Soon after we had dropped anchor aboriginal blacks were reported alongside, and on going on deck I saw two miserable-looking objects in the frailest of boats. Indeed the craft looked like the pictures of an ancient British coracle, and was so light and unseaworthy that every wave washed into it. They had nothing for sale except some commonplace and evil-smelling shells, which they were anxious to exchange for tobacco and biscuits, evidently preferring these commodities to money. We bought all the shells they had, and they were so well satisfied with their bargain that they returned later on with another bucketful of conchological curiosities, which were also purchased. They looked most harmless individuals; but having been warned by Captain Bridge never to trust the natives here, we thought it better to set a double watch for the night, more as a matter of precaution than from any fear of actual danger. Though they may have the reputation of being friendly, and may be certified as such in books of sailing directions and on the Admiralty charts, one can never feel sure of their disposition. A trifling event may have occurred since the last report was made which would alter the disposition of the whole tribe towards Europeans. Some officers may have landed to shoot, and walked over the crops of the natives without apologising or offering them remuneration, not knowing that they had done anything wrong. Drunken sailors may have landed, and so changed the friendly attitude of the inhabitants to deadly enmity towards the next arrivals. I honestly believe that a great many of the reported outrages in the South Sea and other savage islands are due more to a temporary misunderstanding between blacks and whites than to any cold-blooded barbarity or love of bloodshed on the part of the natives.373

Wednesday, August 10.—Some of the party went early ashore, and I need scarcely say they were not molested in the slightest degree, and only found a most harmless black camp of about twenty individuals, with gins nursing their babies and men walking about. They brought off a good collection of pectens, clams, helmets, conchs, pearl-oysters, and large cowries, but the specimens were not very perfect. Also a quantity of greenery in the shape of Pancratiums, Logodium scandens, climbing Lycopodium, and a curious sort of fruit off a palm, which grows in large cone-shaped clusters. They call it breadfruit in these parts, and the natives eat it; but it certainly does not look either inviting or eatable. One fruit weighed twelve, and the other over eleven, pounds.

Queensland Natives

Queensland Natives

Two more natives came alongside this morning. They had374 not the slightest vestige of clothing; but two men, whom I saw over the side later in the day, both sported hats, and one of them had on besides a man-of-war shirt; the other wore a very short tunic cut low in the neck and several rows of canary-coloured glass beads. We weighed at eleven, and proceeded towards Dungeness under sail. I was carried up into the deck-house to see the view, which was provokingly obscured by mists and driving rain. We found some difficulty in making our way, owing to the new buoys not having yet been entered on the Admiralty chart. Fortunately, the officers of the 'Myrmidon' had warned Tom of this fact, made more dangerous by the thick mist and fog. We ultimately arrived at Dungeness in safety, taking everybody by surprise, as no ship had ever been known to go through the southern entrance of Hinchinbrook Channel before without a pilot. The pilot, a nice old man, had been looking for us all day yesterday, as well as all last night. As we did not appear, he must have gone home, thereby losing the pleasure of conducting us into the harbour, but giving Tom the gratification of bringing the vessel in through the channel without taking a pilot.

Thursday, August 11th.—When I awoke at eight Tab and Mr. des Graz had already started on their shooting expedition, and at noon we also set forth on an excursion up the Herbert River. Tom had caused a comfortable bed to be rigged up for me in the gig, so that I was not obliged to dress, but simply got out of one bed into another. The gig was towed by the steam-launch, which also trailed the 'Flash' behind in case we might want to land in any shallow place or get aground on a sand or mud bank. After the first little fluster of moving was over it was a great pleasure to me to be once more in the open air after being shut up for what seems so long a time. It felt deliciously warm too, the temperature being 74°. The scenery was beautiful—sandy shores, green woods with high precipitous mountains375 in the background, covered with shiny slate-like shale, which when moist shows up like a mirror through the mist. The view so reminded me of Scotland that I felt inclined to take up my glasses to look for deer among the craggy peaks and corries. We passed the little pilot station of Dungeness, and almost directly afterwards the hamlet of the same name. It bears some resemblance to its English namesake, for it is situated on a sandy spit of land, surrounded by mangrove swamps instead of grass marshes. I noticed, too, that the people have the fever-stricken look which is sometimes seen about Lydd and that part of the country. There are only fifty-six inhabitants, men, women, and children. Dull as the surroundings seemed, it is wonderful how bright and cheerful the376 people who came on board yesterday seemed to be. The river, though wider, put us very much in mind of the Kuching, in Borneo—the same tropical vegetation and miles of unhealthy-looking mangrove swamps. We passed several tidy-looking little settlements on the banks, some picturesquely built of wood thatched with sugar-cane or palm-leaf, while others were constructed of corrugated iron, which must be frightfully hot in summer. The white people, so far as we could judge, as we passed up and down the river, were suffering from the climate. The Kanakas and Chinamen seemed more prosperous; and the few aboriginals looked quite happy in their natural surroundings.

Cardwell School House

Cardwell School House

The servants, with their usual ingenuity, managed to both cook and serve an excellent lunch, in the boat, with only the assistance of the 'Darby and Joan' stove. About half-past two we reached the wharf of the Halifax sugar-plantation, where our arrival disturbed a large party of aboriginals, women and children, who were enjoying their afternoon bath, splashing, jumping like a shoal of fish. Our party (including the dogs) landed, and on their return said that the crop of sugar looked very healthy, and the rolling and crushing stock of the cane was in excellent order. The whole district is well adapted for the cultivation of sugar. No less than 9,600 tons were produced in 1886. The growth is steadily increasing, and the country will sooner or later become the centre of a large and prosperous trade.

For the cultivation of sugar on the Herbert both British and coloured labour is employed—British workmen in the mills, the coloured people in cutting the cane. Wages for Englishmen range from twenty-five shillings upwards weekly. We spoke to some of the wives of the workmen, several of whom are recent arrivals from Lancashire. Their dwellings are of the simplest description, made of corrugated iron or of straw, and scattered at haphazard in a clearing in the jungle or on377 the banks of the river. These pioneers of cultivation have to lead a hard life and bear many privations—circumstances in which the colonising qualities of the Anglo-Saxon race always come to the front.

There was an hotel and a store, and, as is usual in this sort of place, enormous piles of broken bottles and empty cases of tinned meats, jams, &c. It breaks my heart to see the colonists, particularly the children, living on condensed milk, tinned meats, and canned fruits from America, when there is so much good pasture running to waste all round the house. In the orchards the trees are literally broken down from the weight of their crop, while quantities of fruit which the boughs cannot support are given to the pigs and cattle.

Dead Crocodile on Snag

Dead Crocodile on Snag

We had to wait a little before starting on our homeward water-way, for the tubes of the 'Trap's' boiler began to leak, and had to be repaired. This delay gave us an opportunity of observing some of the inhabitants, who came to the pier to see us. They looked smart and clean and well-to-do—quite different from those we had noticed as we ascended the river. We stopped to take one or two photographs of tropical scenery and of various little stations on the way down the river. We also paused to look at the body of a dead alligator which had been caught in a snag. He was between five and seven feet long, and a second rather larger one lay close by. From time to time we caught sight of parties of blacks hidden amongst the rank vegetation of the shores, and we saw some beautiful birds, particularly a brilliant blue kingfisher, flashing about like a jewel in the sunlight. There was another pretty little red-beaked bird; and an enormous black crane, about four feet high, with white tips to his wings, and a red and blue topknot, stalked about among the lotus-lilies. One part of the river banks was covered by a dense growth of pancratium lilies, scenting the whole air; while elsewhere a tangled curtain of pink and violet ipomœa hung down from tall trees.378 I may mention that the currents in the river are very strong, and that we had several tropical showers in the course of the day. Although I enjoyed my outing, I was thankful to get on board again and lie down on my bed. Mr. and Mrs. Wardlaw came off later on, and brought me some orchids and a telegram from Mr. Pennefather pressing us to stay till to-morrow, so as to allow the gentlemen to have the good day's shooting he had arranged for them; but want of time rendered this pleasant plan impossible. The maids, stewards, and some of the crew had gone on shore on Hinchinbrook Island, and brought back a quantity of ferns, orchids, lilies, and shells, and an amusing report of the blacks' camp which they had seen there. The children were so delighted with the descrip379tion the maids gave them of the wonders on shore that they promptly took off their father and two other gentlemen in the steam-launch to search for curiosities, hoping to be fortunate enough to find some shells as beautiful and uncommon as those the servants had brought back with them.

Friday, August 12th.—An hour after midnight the sportsmen returned, and Mr. Pennefather came to breakfast. He was much disappointed that the party could not stay for another day's shooting, and talked of the variety of game to be had—geese, ducks, widgeon, teal, coot, plover, quail, swans, turkeys, and bitterns, to say nothing of cockatoos, parrots, wallabys, kangaroos, and alligators. Yesterday the engine-driver, being a sportsman himself, kindly stopped the train and allowed them to have a shot, or rather several. They succeeded in killing one poor lady wallaby with a dear little baby in her pouch, which did not seem very young, and would therefore have been easy to rear; but, unfortunately, they did not take possession of it and bring it on board for a pet, to add to the little flock already brought up by hand. Wallabys are quite easy to tame when caught as young as this little creature, and are very gentle and affectionate. Arrived at the factory, the shooting-party had lunch with Mr. Pennefather, and then went out with their guns, but only succeeded in bagging a bandicoot, two ducks, a widgeon, a plover, and a few other birds, making altogether a somewhat nondescript bag.

Precisely at 9.30 we started under steam through the Rockingham Channel, which separates Hinchinbrook, an island of magnificent mountains, from the mainland. We are now well in the doldrums of the Tropic of Capricorn, and the delicious fair strong trade-breezes we have hitherto enjoyed have now deserted us, or rather we have sailed through them. I do not think I ever saw anything finer than this Rockingham Channel. The mountains on the mainland are high, and of beautiful shapes, with points and rounded outlines,380 covered with green foliage, whilst on the inner shore of the island of Hinchinbrook there is a dense mass of tropical foliage clothing the hills up to their highest tops. Where the scrub has been burnt, little patches of ferns of a fresh light green colour have sprung up, and the leafy mass is broken here and there by a perpendicular rock or a white lace-like cascade. Every bay and little inlet has its own peculiar charm, and occasionally a sharp spit of rock is thrust out into the sea. The water to-day is as placid as it can possibly be, and reflects on its surface as in a mirror all the beauties of the scenery. About twelve o'clock we reached Cardwell, a collection of little tin houses, looking from the ship as if they stood amid widely separated fields and orchards. All the party but the Doctor and myself went on shore to see the place. The people were all very kind, and our party were entertained at the house of Mr. Walsh, the principal Government official; and afterwards the chairman of the Local Board, on behalf of the inhabitants, read and presented a neatly worded address to Tom, who made a suitable reply. The party then returned on board, laden with orchids, cocoa-nuts, and everything the township produces. The few settlers were most hospitable, and expressed great pleasure at seeing us. Whilst Tom and the others were taking their ramble at Cardwell, Mr. Walsh came off to pay me a little visit; but directly the shore party returned on board, at 2.30, we resumed our voyage under steam towards Mourillyan. The channel was still lovely, with islands on one side and the high mountains of the mainland on the other. I do not know when we have had such a charming sail, and there was a certain appropriateness in the surroundings on this 12th of August. The general contour of the hills, the purple colouring of the mountains, the Norfolk pines and other trees on some distant heights (when you were not near enough to see how tropical was the foliage) reminded me vividly of Scotland. What a pleasure381 lovely scenery is! and what a delight to be able to travel and see it! I do not think I have ever forgotten or shall forget a single really beautiful view I have ever seen and admired. Those scenes are all clear and distinct, put away in little pigeon-holes of memory. If my brain were only a photographic camera, I could print them off as clearly on paper to-day as in the long bygone years when I first saw them. All the incidents and circumstances are still fresh in my recollection.

For the last few days the scenery has been an especial pleasure to me, laid up as I am in the deck-house, where a comfortable bed has been arranged for me, so high that I can look out of the window and have my eyes delighted and my nerves soothed. I am very thankful that I can thus enjoy the lovely coast, though I should much prefer being able to take a more active part in the sight-seeing, orchid- and shell-collecting, and general scrambling which ensues every day when the rest of the party go for their pleasant walks on shore along sandy beaches shaded by graceful palms, with tree ferns growing almost to the water's edge. It is fortunate, perhaps, that this constant malarial fever has made me feel too weak to care much about anything, so that I am not tempted to long to do imprudent things. I was indeed sorry when the shades of evening began to fall and prevented my seeing anything beyond the mere outlines of the coast.

The distance to Mourillyan is only forty miles, and the entrance to the harbour is extremely fine, though it was so dark that we could hardly distinguish anything. Soon after we entered the harbour and dropped anchor, Mr. Levinge, the manager of three large sugar-estates in the neighbourhood, came on board, full of plans of pleasure for the morrow. Unfortunately the programme which had been arranged was rather more than I could undertake. I may be able to manage the eight miles in a steam-tram through the jungle, to see the382 sugar-plantation, crushing-mills, and lunch with the manager and hospitable proprietor of the plantation; but I fear I shall not have strength or time to go on to the Gundy Plantation, some miles off, up a branch of the Johnstone River, and see the scenery there, which is said to be very fine. The original idea was to go on in boats to Geraldton, close to the mouth of the Johnstone River, where the yacht or a steam-launch was to meet us and take us back to Mourillyan Harbour, about eight miles off. We left it till the morning to decide what we should do, and went to bed in good time so as to be ready for an early start if I felt strong enough to attempt it.

The Train in the Bush

The Train in the Bush

Saturday, August 13.—Woke just at daybreak. When I looked through the porthole I found that this harbour of Mourillyan where we383 were lying was one of the most picturesque I had ever seen. It is entirely land-locked, except for the narrow passage through which we entered last night. Both vegetation and landscape looked thoroughly tropical, and two or three bungalows were perched amid the dense foliage on the steep banks of the rising hillsides.

Zamoa Tree

Zamoa Tree

We were ready before our kind hosts, and it was quite eleven o'clock before we landed and established ourselves in the steam-tram, ready for a journey to the Mourillyan sugar-plantation. My long deck-chair having been placed most comfortably in a sugar-truck, my journey was luxuriously and easily performed, though, after the perfectly quiet, smooth movement of the last few days, I rather felt the occasional jolts and jars. I have travelled through tropical jungles in all parts of the world, and though the scenery to-day was wanting in the grandeur of the virgin forests of Brazil, and of the tangled masses of vegetation of Borneo and the Straits Settlements, it had much special beauty of its own. The variety of foliage was a striking contrast to the monotonous verdure often seen in Australia. Some of the palms and ferns were extremely beautiful, and so well grown that each might have been a specimen plant in a greenhouse. What I call the umbrella palm, but what they call here the cabbage palm—a sort of Zamia alsophila—grew abundantly in groups. Wherever there was a clearing we could see high trees, some with their bare white stems rising to nearly a hundred feet before they branched out, while others were completely covered, and almost killed, by masses of creepers whose leaves, of every kind and shape—some large and broad like the Aristolochias; others quite finely cut like Logodiums; others sharp, pointed, and shiny; others again palmated—and of every shade of green, gave a fine effect to the different peeps and vistas as we glided along. Presently the clearings became more numerous, and we passed a deserted384 village, surrounded by gardens, where some Chinese had settled a few years ago and tried to make a living by supplying ships with vegetables. They did not find the venture successful, and have left the district. We passed several small tramways running at right angles into the bush, with little huts adjoining, built of rushes and thatched with sugar-cane. In these the men lived when sent down to cut timber for the fences, furnaces, and sleepers for the tramway, as it was pushed further and further up through the jungle. 'Sugar is a very expensive crop to start, for the work of clearing the jungle is most laborious, and therefore costly. The expense385 of cutting down timber for the first rough cropping is 10l. per acre. The complete clearing and grubbing of roots for the purposes of ploughing and permanent cultivation is not less than 20l. an acre. The cost of clearing alone is thus 30l. an acre. The machinery of the mills, of Scotch manufacture, cost more than 60,000l. Some 900 acres have been brought under cultivation. The total capital already expended may be taken at 200,000l. The yield of sugar is from three to five tons per acre. The price may be taken at 20l. per ton. The production of sugar last year was 2,050 tons.'

'The successful results of labour imported from Java are a special feature at Mourillyan. We heard an excellent character of the Javanese workpeople. They are sturdy, and most docile. They are imported for a term of three years, under strict engagements with the Dutch Government. An advance of two to three pounds is given to each workman before he leaves home. His fare costs 6l. to Queensland. His wages are 30s. a month and found. The secret of success has been the adoption of a system of supervision by Javanese sarongs. Javanese are employed to drive locomotives, and for the management of the boilers and most of the machinery in the mills.'

The proprietors of the plantation have 5,000 acres cleared already, and will clear more as soon as they can raise sufficient capital. They have already invested 250,000l. in the land, 20,000l. in the tram, and 40,000l. in the mills, independent of the money they will require for all sorts of contemplated improvements and additions. The process of crushing is just the same as we saw in Trinidad. The carts bring in the cane from the field, and it is passed through a series of rollers to extract the juice, which is pumped up to a higher floor, where it is received into vats, and then by different processes converted into sugar of three kinds—white, medium white, and light brown. The first-quality sugar is made white386 by being subjected to a process of sulphur fumes, which produce beautiful glittering crystals. It is said that this method of treating the sugar is not so satisfactory as the old and rougher process. It seems to bleach the crystallised particles without sufficiently removing the impurities. The quality of the sugar is, however, excellent, and it commands a high price in England.

From the mill I was carried through a clean and tidy-looking coolie village to a comfortable house of the bungalow type, like those in Mourillyan Harbour, inhabited by Mr. Nash, the proprietor of one of the plantations, and Mr. Levinge, who had kindly arranged a luncheon for us. Australian colonists are the most hospitable people in the world. Their one idea seems to be to endeavour to do everything they can for you, to give you the best of everything they possess. Nowhere, in all our far-extending travels, have we received more true hospitality. I had a comfortable sofa provided for me, whereon I lay during lunch, and afterwards I rested in a chair in the verandah while the others went to see more of the sugar plantation and mill.

About three o'clock we started back, and returned much quicker than we came up, for which I was very thankful. Pleasant as the day had been I was getting rather worn out. On our return to Mourillyan our hospitable hosts accompanied us on board, and made an inspection of the 'Sunbeam.' They could not stop long, as our Jersey pilot said we had better be off before dark, the entrance to the harbour being very narrow. It is, however, so well buoyed that when the new chart is published there will be no difficulty in getting in or out at any time of the day or night, with or without a pilot. In the night there are two leading lights which show you the direct way in, the only danger being at spring tides, when the tide sometimes runs eight or nine knots an hour. The harbour looked lovely as we steamed away, and we were quite sorry to leave the little387 haven of rest where we had spent such a peaceful, comfortable day and night.

On the Johnstone River

On the Johnstone River

We were soon outside Mourillyan and past the picturesque mouth of the Johnstone River. Judging from the photographs, the scenery of this river must be very fine, for the sun-pictures represent several high waterfalls pouring volumes of water over dark and perpendicular basaltic rocks. One of the falls is said to be 300 feet high, and there are several cascades with a fall of between 100 and 250 feet. The light breeze from the S.E. carried us on famously. We soon saw the Seymour Range; a little later we found ourselves off the mouth of the Mulgrave River, and by midnight had passed through the narrow channel which divides the Falkland Islands from the mainland at Cape Grafton. We ladies retired early to bed, and even the children acknowledged to being tired; but the gentlemen played whist on deck till a much later hour. The nights are perfect now.388 The breeze is rather fresh by day when not under the shelter of a protecting coast; but one must remember that if the wind be fresh it is wafting us speedily on our way, and we must not grumble, for we have turned the corner and are now homeward-bound.

About three o'clock this morning we met a steamer going down the coast, and, with the usual fatuity of steamships, she would not make up her mind which way to go until she was close to us, and then ran right across our bows. It is most extraordinary why steamships will not get out of the way of sailing-ships at night. The matter is entirely in their own hands, for the sailing-ship is comparatively helpless. It is quite impossible for the officer on watch to tell at what rate the approaching vessel is moving, and the steamer ought to alter her helm the very instant a sailing-ship is perceived. Our pace is rather rapid, particularly in light winds, and it is probable that the steamer misjudged her distance from us. The more voyages I make the more I feel that the melancholy little paragraphs one only too often sees, headed 'Lost with all hands,' or 'Missing,' are nearly always the result of accidents caused by a bad look-out and careless steering. I often tell Tom it is his duty to report those cases which come to his own knowledge. The instances have been numerous on this voyage alone; but he is too kind-hearted to like to complain, which I consider a mistaken view of humanitarianism.

Sunday, August 14th.—I did not wake till late, and then found we had just passed Cairns Harbour, which is said to be a wonderfully rising place. The soil is good and suitable for sugar, and a railway is being rapidly constructed which will open up the interior of this part of Northern Queensland. The scenery is lovely, especially up the Herberton River, where one of the most magnificent waterfalls in Australia is to be seen.389



We had service at eleven, but I was only able to listen to the hymns from my cabin. At afternoon service at half-past four I heard every word just as plainly from my bed on deck as I could have done had I been below in the saloon. This has been one of the most perfect days at sea I can remember, and I was carried up early on deck to admire the beautiful coast, with the Macalister Range in the background. At noon to-day we were in lat. 16° 37´ S., long. 145° 47´ E., stealing quietly along under balloon canvas. At one o'clock we passed the entrance to Port Douglas, another young and rising place. Early in the afternoon we were abreast of the light390house on the Low Islands, which returned our signals with creditable promptitude, and after sighting Cape Kimberly we found ourselves abreast of the Daintree River, where, I am told, there is some beautiful scenery. A little later Cape Tribulation was passed, where Captain Cook ran his vessel ashore to discover the amount of damage sustained after she had been aground on a coral reef. They are now trying to recover her guns, which are so overgrown by coral that it is likely to prove a difficult job. Divers have been down and have absolutely seen the guns; but if they try to dislodge them with dynamite the result may be the same as at Springsure with the large opal—that they will be blown to pieces. It is interesting to once more read Captain Cook's voyages on the scene of some of his most important discoveries, and to think that many of these peaks, bays, mountains, and inlets were named by him after some more or less memorable incident. Cape Tribulation lies exactly under the Peter Botte, a large and peculiarly shaped mountain. The whole coast here is very like that of Cuba, especially the shape of its mountains and the indentations of its coasts. The sunset was magnificent, and made the mountains look quite volcanic as they rose in the sky against the lurid light, producing red, yellow, and grey tints such as one sees at Vesuvius, Etna, or Stromboli.

This afternoon, as we were looking over the side, Tom and I observed a quantity of a brownish substance floating on the surface of the water. We thought it might be either the outpouring of a neighbouring volcano, or the spawn of some fish, sponge, coral, or algæ. We drew up several buckets of this discoloured water, and on closer inspection found the floating matter to be a small sponge which exists in larger pieces at a considerable depth below, but on reaching the surface changes to a sort of powder, which reunites again and forms a filmy track for a long distance.


Thursday Island

Thursday Island


EAST COAST (continued).

Monday, August 15th.—Last night was an anxious one for Tom, who was up and down a good deal, and did not get to bed until 5.45 a.m., having hoisted the pilot-flag and left orders for the yacht to jog about until the pilot came on board. It was half-past eight o'clock before we were securely moored in the harbour, almost alongside of our old friend the little 'Harrier.' Originally a yacht, she is now one of her Majesty's ships, and is used for cruising from one island to another. With 35 men on board, and guns and gear of all kinds, she is not by any means the smart little craft she used to be; but she is in thorough working order, and as good a sea-boat as ever.392

Cooktown, in spite of the preponderance of iron houses and shops, looks rather pretty from the sea, and is picturesquely situated in an amphitheatre of hills, of which Mount Cook is the highest. Its small port is formed by the mouth of the Endeavour River. There are abundant indications that larger and more substantial buildings will rapidly be substituted for the provisional structures of which Cooktown at present consists. The population is about 2,500. The Palmer River gold-diggings, and some recent discoveries of tin, which have attracted a large number of miners, are the chief sources of prosperity. A railway will shortly connect Cooktown with the gold-mines. A section of thirty-two miles has been already opened. It was a delicious day, and I enjoyed sitting under an awning until the afternoon, when some of the party went on shore to play lawn-tennis, whilst the Doctor, Münie and I went for a little drive, which did me good, though it tired me at the time.



Tuesday, August 16th.—Awoke about seven, feeling much refreshed, and went early on deck. Many visitors came on board, only a few of whom I was able to see. All the rest of the party again landed, and at twelve o'clock Tom and I went on board the 'Harrier.' I was carried on deck, and then managed to get below to look at the new alterations. Captain Pike had some pretty watercolour drawings and a good collection of curios, picked up at various islands. These were capitally arranged in the cabin, and looked very nice. He kindly gave Mabelle and me some beautiful shells, as well as some gorgonias growing on a pearl-shell. In the afternoon we went out for a drive. On leaving the town we followed the same road as yesterday, after which we came to a fairly good bush-road or track, running through a pretty country, with some fine trees and a great variety of foliage. We passed one or two nice stations, with comfortable, deep-verandahed houses, and tidy gardens and orchards. Ultimately we plunged into the regular393 bush, where the sandflies and mosquitoes began to trouble the rest of the party; but my invaluable eucalyptus oil saved me. Nothing could exceed the care our driver took of me; his chief anxiety was that I should not suffer a single jolt beyond what the roughness of the road necessitated. He came out here when he was twenty-one years old, and rushed at once to the gold-fields; found 1,100l. in three days, on an alluvial field 300 miles inland from Sydney; lost it two days after, by putting it into a speculative mining concern which failed the day after he parted with his money. He then became a gentleman's coachman at Sydney, and had several other mining and reefing adventures on some fields near the John394stone River. All went well with him until he had an attack of fever, which laid him up for eighteen months, and not only absorbed all his own little savings but that of his comrades, to whose kindness he was indebted for the positive necessaries of life. Now he is coachman at the largest hotel here, and as soon as he has scraped a little money together, intends going off to the Croydon diggings, where I hope he will be fortunate, and trust he will invest his hard-earned money more satisfactorily. Owing to our late departure we had no time to stop, as we had intended, to see the tomb erected over the remains of poor Mrs. Watson, her child, and Ah Sam the Chinaman, who are buried here. The story of their death is a sad one, and we listened with interest to the circumstances as related by Mr. Fitzgerald; which are briefly these.

Elizabeth Wilson, who came originally from Rockhampton, was the wife of Mr. Watson, the owner of some small schooners engaged in the bêche-de-mer trade, whose head establishment was at the Lizard Island. Some time in 1881 she persuaded her husband to take one of his vessels on a tour of inspection, leaving her with a child of two years old and a couple of faithful Chinamen in charge of the Lizard Island. Mr. Watson set forth very reluctantly, only yielding to his wife's assurances that with firearms in the house, which she well knew how to manage, she would be in no danger. Soon after her husband's departure, however, the natives came across from the mainland in great force, killed one of the Chinamen, and wounded the other. When it became dark the brave woman hastened to provision one of the square iron tanks used for boiling down the bêche-de-mer, and embarked in it with her babe and wounded retainer. Nothing could be more clumsy than such a craft, 4 feet long by 3 feet wide, and perhaps 1½ feet high. She put water-bottles on board, and with only a shawl for sail and an oar to steer with set forth on the calm sea, towing, however, a little dinghy behind, in case of her iron vessel395 proving too unmanageable. The trade-wind carried the tank thirty miles out to sea to one of the Hawick group; but she was prevented from landing there by the threatening aspect of the blacks in possession. She drifted a little further to a neighbouring island, where the spring tide carried the tank up so far inland that she could not launch it again. This was the more terrible, as a very few miles further would have brought her to the lightship. There were no blacks on the island, to which the tank had been carried. Mrs. Watson had sufficient provisions, but apparently no water. They all must have died of thirst just before an abundant rainfall. Three weeks later, when their bodies were discovered, there were pools of fresh water around them. In the meantime Mr. Watson called at the lightship and recognised his own dinghy, which had drifted thither a few days before. He immediately set out, accompanied by Mr. Fitzgerald, and soon reached the little island, where he found his wife's body, one arm still clasping her child, and the other hand holding a loaded revolver. Her diary lay close by, and told the sad story almost up to the last moment. The dead Chinaman lay near the tank. The bodies were put into rude shells and taken to Cooktown, where they were buried. The poor woman's diary and the tank are preserved in the Museum at Brisbane.

Thursday, August 18th.—We gave Cape Sidmouth a wide berth and passed Night Island, going close to Cape Direction and Restoration Island, which latter is exactly opposite the narrow opening in the Barrier Reef through which Bligh found his way in 1780, in an open boat, after the Mutiny of the 'Bounty.' Bligh gave the name to Restoration Island to commemorate his escape from the mutineers. A little further to the north took us abreast of Providential Channel, through which Captain Cook entered with the greatest difficulty in 1770. He arrived outside the Barrier Reef, rolling heavily to the swell with no wind, and finding it impossible to descry396 a single opening. Hope seemed at an end, when, providentially, Captain Cook espied from his masthead what looked like deep water between two rocks, through which he safely steered his vessel. From Restoration Island to Cape Weymouth we were considerably exposed to the sea, and rolled about a good deal until we got into the shelter of Weymouth Bay. Passing Fair Cape, we reached Piper Island at about eight o'clock, and anchored for the night, close to the lightship, alongside which there was another small steamer. The last fourteen miles had to be done in the dark. This was a time of great anxiety for Tom, for the passage was narrow, being only about half a mile wide in places, and the current was strong. It blew hard all night, and we longed for the sheltered anchorage of last evening.

Friday, August 19th.—Early this morning Tom and some of the gentlemen went on board the 'Claremont' lightship. After breakfast we landed on the reef. It is a bare heap of sand and coral, save on its highest part, where a few tufts of coarse grass are growing. Here we found a native of St. John, New Brunswick, brought up, as he told us, by foreign parents, engaged in the business of collecting bêche-de-mer, or dried sea-slugs, for which there is a large demand in China.

Coral on Pearl Oyster Coral on Pearl-oyster

This white man had in his employ thirty natives. He had five fine boats, which are constantly at work inside the Great Barrier Reef. The money embarked in this enterprise had been397 advanced by a bank at Cooktown. Bêche-de-mer commands a high price. We were shown the accumulated casks full of this unattractive edible, representing a value of many hundreds of pounds. Lee, the head of this establishment, was living in a shelter formed of tattered canvas and battered sheets of corrugated iron, but he evidently possessed the power of command and organisation, and was not without education. He produced the Admiralty charts of the coast and Barrier Reef, with large additions to the delineation of the reefs from his own explorations.

Bêche-de-mer is of various qualities. The best is worth 120l. per ton, the next 100l., a third quality 90l., and a fourth from 80l. to as low as 30l. per ton. The bêche-de-mer is a curious kind of sea-slug, rather like a sea cucumber. Its scientific name is Holothuria. It makes excellent soup, which is very nourishing, and is like the snail soup so much given to invalids in the south of France. In Cooktown the Europeans eat it largely, while in China, as trepang, it is a much-prized and high-priced delicacy.

We had a long and pleasant conversation with Lee, and Tom and I were both much struck with him. Tom was anxious to purchase for me a pair of large hawksbill turtle shells which he had seen earlier in the morning on the lightship, but Lee absolutely refused to part with them at any price. He said a man had done him a good turn in Cooktown, and he had promised him the shells. We suggested that it was possible, as the man was a resident of Cooktown, that he might get him another pair and let us have these; but Lee was quite firm, and said, 'No, I have given my word, and it would be very wrong to break it on any account whatsoever.' His charts were most interesting, and his own discoveries of new reefs and shoals were intelligently marked. I hope that for the good of the navigating world they may some day be incorporated into an Admiralty chart, but I trust not without398 due recognition of Lee's work. He certainly deserves the greatest credit for the careful and painstaking observations he must have made while cruising in his little schooners about the Barrier Reef. Many a shipwreck may possibly be prevented and many a life saved by his laborious and at present unrewarded exertions. Just before we were going away it seemed to suddenly dawn upon Lee that Tom was Lord Brassey. He asked the question, and when an answer in the affirmative was given shook hands most warmly, and was delighted when he was told that I was Lady Brassey and that the children were my own dear ones. He had all our history at his fingers' ends, and was extremely pleased to see the 'historical Sunbeam' and 'her spirited owners,' as he called us. Later on in the morning he tried to come on board the yacht in his schooner, but unfortunately missed the rope and so lost the opportunity of seeing the vessel. I was interested to hear from him a confirmation of our supposition that the island off which we anchored was the one on which Eliza Watson's body was found.

We landed on the leeward side of the island, and on going to the windward shore it was curious to notice the process by which these islands gradually become covered with vegetation. The whole shore just above high-water mark was covered with little seeds, beans, and various other atoms of vegetation which had been dropped by birds or cast up by the sea, and which in process of time will cover the island with trees and shrubs. The island did not look much bigger than half a dozen times the size of the yacht. At low spring tides the most beautiful corals and shells are found.

The blacks we saw on shore were a good-looking set of men, the finest in stature we have yet seen. Lee says he has to be most careful and always 'sleep with one eye open,' as they are treacherous. They would turn round on him at any moment if they saw a chance and did not know he was well armed.399

All the inmates of the lightship came on board the yacht, with which they were much delighted. They said they could not have imagined anything like it on the sea, and thought they must have got on dry land without knowing it. We parted with mutual good wishes, and I have no doubt that the visit of the 'Sunbeam' will be a pleasant little incident, affording much material for conversation for weeks to come. We did not forget to give them some Ambulance papers.

We weighed at 11.30, and anchored under the Piper Islands an hour after sunset. Distance, eighty-five miles.

Saturday, August 20th.—All hands were called at four, and we got under weigh soon after, making Home Islands about seven. Thence we passed through Shelbourne Bay, by Hannibal Islands, and so off Orford Ness. The navigation here was very intricate, and necessitated much trouble and attention on Tom's part, and the taking of endless cross bearings and observations. At 11.50 we passed the s.s. 'Tannadice,' and exchanged friendly greetings. All navigators owe the commander of this ship gratitude for reporting the reef named after his vessel. It lies in a most dangerous position, and would doubtless have brought many a good ship to grief had it not been reported and charted. Soon after we started this morning we very nearly got on another reef. The wind blew fresh and fair, and the current ran strong. Tom chanced to be engaged taking some observations, and so paid, for a few moments, less attention than usual to the pace at which we were going; and in this hazardous interval the yacht very nearly ran on a coral reef that was only just a-wash.[6]

From Fern Island, an almost straight course through a400 narrow channel hemmed in by rocks, reefs, shoals, and islets, brought us to the entrance to the Albany Pass. The navigation is intricate, but the scenery quite lovely; the land on either side of the Pass, whether on the mainland or on the islands, being densely wooded. At Fly Point on the mainland our attention was attracted by some curious-looking projections on a hillside, which resembled an enlarged edition of Stonehenge, in red sandstone. On looking through the glasses we discovered that these projections were ant-hills of an extraordinary peaked shape, some of them being many feet in height.

The entrance to Port Albany and Somerset is narrow; and the strong tide and wind combined to knock up an unpleasant popple. At Somerset on the mainland, and immediately opposite to our anchorage at Port Albany, a pretty little station has been built, with a flagstaff in front of the bungalow. On our arrival the flag which was hoisted was dipped a great many times and a large bonfire was lighted, in order to give us, I suppose, a really warm welcome.

Sunday, August 21st.—The boat went ashore early this lovely morning to the large house we had seen last night. The station belongs to Mr. Jardine, a relative of the founders of the firm of Jardine, Matheson, & Co., so well known in China as well as along this coast. The station is for cattle, and they are gradually increasing its boundaries so as to be able to supply Thursday Island and the neighbourhood with fresh meat, of which they are lamentably in need at present. About twenty-five years ago Mr. Jardine drove a mob of 700 cattle from Rockhampton to this place. It took him and his party nearly two years to accomplish the journey, and they had to fight the blacks on their way.

The men who went ashore in the boat brought off some milk and new-laid eggs. There is excellent water here. The supply is obtained from two springs and a well, and as water401 is bad, scarce, and dear at Thursday Island, many ships come here for it. Last Sunday there were sixteen schooners in this little port. They are all away now at the reefs, but are expected back next Sunday.

We had Litany at eleven o'clock. In the afternoon I landed with the Doctor, and sat, or rather lay quietly, on the pleasant sandy shore for an hour or two, while the Doctor and the sailors roamed about and picked up many curious pieces of coral and some lumps of scoriæ, of which the whole island seems to be formed. There is very little soil beneath the volcanic matter, and it is wonderful how trees and plants manage to grow in such luxuriant fashion. Some cocoa-nut trees have been planted, which are doing exceedingly well, and I rested under their shade, looking up at the sky through the long, pale green leaves. The innumerable flies, ants, and sandflies were troublesome. But what can be expected in a land where the ant-heaps are ten feet high and twenty-four feet in circumference? While on his rambles with one of our men the Doctor saw a large snake four or five feet in length, which he vainly tried to kill; but the reptile escaped into a crevice in the rocks amongst the brushwood.

Tom, Tab, and Mr. Wright, in the meantime, went over to the mainland to pay a visit to Mr. Jardine. They found the sea rather rough in the narrow crossing, and after a stiff clamber up the hillside arrived at the house. Mr. Jardine was away, but his manager, Mr. Schramud, gave them some interesting information about the pearl fishery, and spoke of the trouble of establishing their station in old days. He took them round the paddocks where the bullocks are kept, and then a little way through the bush, where he showed them an encampment of aborigines which was much better constructed than usual. The centre hut was large, with nicely built walls and a substantial thatched roof of coarse dry grass.402

The hut was divided into two parts, one section containing two beds slightly raised from the floor, and the other a few rough seats and a table, upon which stood a broken lamp and a drum, apparently hollowed out from a piece of wood. Mr. Schramud gave the drum to Tab, saying that its peculiarity consisted in the fact that, though the natives possessed no adzes or chisels, the wood was completely hollowed out, and yet it must have been done with knives of the most inferior description. He had often tried, unsuccessfully, to 'catch the natives at work' as he expressed it, in order to watch their method of dealing with such hard wood. On leaving the encampment the party returned to the beach and came across in the cutter to the island, landing in the nice little sheltered cove where the Doctor and I were established.

Drum from Murray Island Drum from Murray Island

Shortly afterwards the Doctor and Mr. Wright started across the hills to meet the others, while Tom, Tab, and I returned, or rather tried to get back, to the yacht in the gig and the cutter, but the tide had fallen considerably, and the reef over which we had floated so gaily on landing, was now showing all sorts of nasty little jagged heads and rounded tops, both above and very near the surface of the water. It was not without many bumps and jars, and a certain amount of risk of finding ourselves firmly aground, that we fairly emerged into the open sea; then a403 long pull, a strong pull, and a pull all together against the swiftly running current brought us once more alongside the good ship 'Sunbeam.'

The rest of the party had still greater difficulty in getting off, for the tide was falling every minute, and the dinghy had to be sent off to pick them up one by one and transfer them to the gig. They seemed to have enjoyed their walk very much, and described the island as being covered with scrub. They saw a few animals which, though wild now, have evidently once been domesticated, and actually stumbled upon a family of little pigs. They climbed over the hill at the back of the landing-place and descended to the windward shore, where they found a stretch of beautiful firm white sand, extending for some distance along the coast, indented by many pretty little coves and bays, in which however there was not much flotsam and jetsam to be collected. Mr. Wright and the Doctor had also been to the windward beach, but by a different route, which led them through a valley full of extraordinary ant-hills. From their description this place must have looked like a veritable city of tombs, something like the view of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. I was sorry they had not taken a camera with them, although we had already taken photographs of isolated ant-hills. The Doctor saw another snake quite as large as the first, but it also escaped before he could get within striking distance of it. Perhaps it was just as well it did escape, as we heard afterwards that they are venomous, in fact deadly. There is no cure for their bite, and though they get out of your way if they can, when once attacked, or if you chance to stand between them and their hole, they fly at you most viciously, and their bite has generally fatal results.

We had evening prayers on board at six, and after a quiet evening's reading, went to bed rather early.

Monday, August 22nd.—I sent ashore this morning, by the men who went for the milk, a few books and Ambulance404 papers for Mr. Jardine, in return for which he sent me several beautiful pearl-shells, some of which had curious corals growing on them. Mr. Schramud paid us an early visit. He was much interested in the Ambulance papers I had sent him, and said he always had a good deal of amateur doctoring to do, both for himself and others, when out in the bush. He gave me a vivid description of how on one occasion his horse, usually a quiet animal, first threw him against the trunk of a tree, breaking his leg in two places, and then, instead of standing still for him to remount, bolted off to the station, seven miles away. Mr. Schramud crawled to the nearest tree, stripped some bark off with his knife, padded it as well as he could with some portion of his garments, and with two straps which he fortunately found in his pocket strapped his leg up, making what he described as an excellent splint or cradle. He then proceeded to drag himself on his hands and knees through the bush towards the station, a terrible journey, for he had not a drop of water or food of any kind with him. Some hours passed before the people at the station, seeing his horse come home riderless and guessing an accident, set out to trace the tracks of the horse through the bush by the light of a lantern, and found him with much difficulty.

Hammer-headed Oyster Hammer-headed Oyster

We had great trouble in getting up our anchors this morning, for they were fouled in every possible way, and it was nearly eleven before we started and were fairly steaming through Albany Pass towards Cape Yorke, on our way to the Thursday Island group. Cape Yorke has been described405 as the seat of Government in these parts, but is a melancholy looking place, and can never have been of any importance. Tom did not quite like taking the inner and shorter channel to Thursday Island, so we went to the north of Wednesday and Hammond Islands, and arrived at the back of Goode Island, where there is a signal-station and lighthouse, from which they signalled a kind welcome and an offer of a pilot, which was declined with thanks. We then rounded the island and proceeded to Normanby Sound close to Friday Island, and, after a tremendous tussle with the tide, finally reached Thursday Island and anchored in Normanby Sound just off Port Kennedy, the name given to the capital of the island, after the late Governor of Queensland.

Thursday Island is one of an extensive and intricate group. The chief building material used in the settlement is corrugated iron, embellished by verandahs supported on wooden posts and nattily painted, making the little dwellings look both pretty and comfortable. The Residency is a larger bungalow on the top of a little hill, and half a dozen fairly good houses cluster round it. Then comes a row of stores along the sea-face, and a few more houses stand at the back. A soft sandy track runs in front of the stores, but there are no roads, and consequently no vehicles, and no draught beasts. There is no communication, except from the visits of occasional steamers, nor are any provisions obtainable, except canned meat and fruits. The vegetables are grown by the invaluable Chinese, on some of the islands opposite. Even the water, of which the supply is scanty, is condensed. The only servants available are people of colour. The ladies have to do everything for themselves, and children of eleven and twelve years are frequently trained by the force of circumstances to become as good cooks and housemaids as many a well-paid servant at home. A gentleman living here said to me the other day, 'How little do our sisters in England know406 the way we live in some of the colonies! I am very glad you have come out, Lady Brassey, for you will be able to describe, as we cannot in letters, the really hard, rough life we lead here.' For those who are well and strong, and can enjoy roughing it, constantly knocking about in a small schooner from island to island, with often nothing to eat except cocoa-nuts and yams, the life is not intolerable; but for those who are delicate, and not able to bear without suffering these conditions, it is indeed a very hard life. The women who bravely face these hardships deserve all our admiration and sympathy. In spite of the great difficulties, they407 manage to maintain a high standard of education and refinement. Truly their lives read a lesson to us all, and teach us how much there is to be thankful for, and how little real cause we have to grumble at many things about which we make a fuss.

Claremont Island Lightship

Claremont Island Lightship

Mr. Milman, the Resident, and Mr. Symes, the Commissioner of Customs, called upon us soon after our arrival, and took the rest of the party on shore to lawn-tennis, which must be a great resource here, for there is no sport of any kind. Mr. Milman has made a good tennis-court, and anybody who likes can play there every afternoon. The society on Thursday Island consists of two resident ladies, supplemented by occasional visitors, and six gentlemen. Besides this handful of English, Mr. Hall lives on Prince of Wales' Island, and Captain and Mrs. Stevens on Goode Island.

The Last Mill in Australia The Last Mill in Australia

Mr. Milman was anxious to take us to Murray and Darnley Islands, in his little steamer the 'Albatross,' but she is at present looking for escaped convicts from New Caledonia, and it seems doubtful when she will return. The story about these escaped convicts is rather interesting. A boat's crew landed here the other day, with four men, who stated they were shipwrecked mariners. They were all examined separately, and told such inconsistent stories (even differing as to whether their ship had one, two, or three masts), that suspicion was aroused. Some were Italians, but one appeared to be a Frenchman, though he pretended not to understand a word of the language. They are undoubtedly escaped convicts from New Caledonia. Two own to having had another man with them, and say that when they landed he disappeared. The others will not acknowledge that the party was ever more than four in number, but the blacks have since reported finding a body on the beach twelve miles from where these men landed, near Somerset. There are still five men wandering about, who were hospitably entertained and furnished with food and408 clothes by Mr. Jardine, at Somerset, before he knew who they were, and three others were compelled to go on board the 'Claremont' lightship, through want of food, and were promptly shipped off to gaol in Brisbane. The 'Albatross' was the little steamer we saw lying alongside the lightship at Piper Island, on the 19th inst. She was then on her way to search all the reefs and islands for the five missing men. I hope it will not be long before they are brought in, for, independent of any other crimes they have committed, they must almost certainly have been guilty of a most brutal murder, and have killed their own comrade. It is wonderful how so many of these men escape. It is difficult to understand how they can procure boats, provisions, and sufficient water for the voyage of over 2,500 miles, that being about the distance from New Caledonia to Rockhampton or Cooktown. The run between New Caledonia and Australia is dead to leeward before the trade-winds.


Port Darwin

Port Darwin



Tuesday, August 23rd.—I had a better night, and awoke feeling much refreshed. Most of the party went early ashore to see what this uninteresting town is like. Tom spent a busy morning with Mr. Milman, going into statistics, fortification questions, and so forth. In the afternoon we steamed across to the pearl-shell station on Prince of Wales' Island, managed by Mr. Hall. He has a nice bungalow there, and seems very busy and happy in his occupation, contriving to keep good friends with all the 'boys,' as the coloured labourers from Manilla, China, the South Sea Islands, and other places are called. These 'boys' are now busily occupied in unloading the shells from the boats and cleaning and preparing them for the market, which latter process we had come to see to-day. First we went to a small shed where about half a dozen 'boys' were employed, some in chopping and scraping the shells in order to reduce their weight, whilst others were washing and cleaning them with brushes made from the outside of410 the cocoa-nut husk, which, when split into strips, is excellent for the purpose, as it scrapes and polishes the shells without scratching them. The boxes stood ready outside for packing, each holding about two cwt. of shells, valued at 11l. per cwt. The number of shells varies according to their size, from sixty to sixty-five fitting into each box. On a table in the middle of the shed the shells were being quickly packed and nailed up, ready for exportation. They are just now higher in price, on account of the disaster on the north-west coast of Western Australia, which has temporarily crippled that rival station. From the cleaning and packing shed we went to another, where the diving apparatus is kept. This was sent out from England, and is exactly the same as that in use everywhere, being made to fit tightly round the ankles, wrists, and neck, with an immense superfluity of space in the middle to hold a storage of air. Besides this heavy dress, divers wear a belt with a large knife stuck into it, to cut themselves free from any obstacle their ropes may get foul of, and they also have a hook, to which their air-pipe is attached. In addition to an enormous pair of leaden boots, two heavy pieces of lead are suspended over their shoulders, one piece lying on their chest and the other on their back. They descend with great rapidity, and can walk, with the current, on the bottom easily enough; but woe betide them if the tender is not careful, for if their air-line catches in anything it is absolutely impossible for them to make any headway against the tide. Unless the men above are quick and clever enough to repair the mistake promptly, they are lost.

Mr. Hall had kindly prepared tea for us at his house, but I wished to return on board, and so deferred my visit until a future occasion. On returning to our anchorage we had quite a business to stem the tide, and took a long time to reach our destination. The others arrived in time to go on shore and have a game of lawn-tennis, an amusement which they all411 much enjoy, and which does them a great deal of good in the intervals of their voyages. Mr. Milman dined with us and told me a great many interesting things about his island, and afterwards the gentlemen had some good games of whist. I have at last heard the real story of the opals, for Mr. Milman's overseer was the first to bring in a piece of opal off the Blackall station on the Listowel Downs, in 1869. The beautiful fragment stood on the mantelpiece for several years before it was thought of any value, but at the time of the great mining fever attention was attracted to the specimen, and it was sent to a mineralogist, who pronounced it to be a fine and valuable opal. The story struck me as being very similar to that told of the first diamond found in South Africa; but doubtless there is a strong family likeness in the early history of all gem-bearing districts.

Wednesday, August 24th.—At ten o'clock this morning Mr. Milman came on board, and we proceeded down the Sound to Goode Island, where we anchored about half a mile from the shore. Tom, Tab, Mabelle, and Mr. Milman landed at once, and walked up to the lighthouse to take a bird's-eye view of this extensive archipelago and to discuss the best method of defence, about which Mr. Milman was anxious to know Tom's opinion. Later on I landed with the rest of the party, and we went to see Captain and Mrs. Stevens, the former of whom is the manager of the pearl-fishing station here. I then returned with Mrs. Stevens and her children to lunch on board the yacht. Whilst I was still lying down to rest I heard a bustle on deck as if the dinghy were being lowered, and as I wanted to send a message on shore I called to them to stop. In reply they told me that 'Sir Roger' was swimming off to the yacht, and that not a moment must be lost in trying to save him. It did not tend to calm my fears when Mrs. Stevens told me that the bay was perfectly full of sharks, and that she herself had lost a412 fine dog not a month ago under similar circumstances. Poor old 'Sir Roger' swam bravely out, keeping his head well above the water; but what with the fear of the strong current dashing him against the sharp coral reefs, and the dread of seeing him dragged under by the snags of a ferocious shark, I spent a bad quarter of an hour. At last I saw him pulled safely into the boat. I have been so ill lately, and necessarily left so much alone when the others were on shore, that my dog has become more than ever a companion to me, and never leaves my chair or bed for an instant if he can possibly help it. He had been fairly driven away this morning to accompany Tom on his long walk to the lighthouse, for I knew the outing would do him good. Halfway up the hill he refused to follow any further, and bolted back, in a straight line, to the beach, and had actually swum more than halfway to the yacht before he was picked up. I should hardly have thought a dog could identify the vessel at so great a distance.

Those of the party who had been left on shore came off to a late lunch, and shortly afterwards we got up our anchor and steamed back towards Thursday Island. This was again a work of great difficulty, for the tide ran eight or nine knots an hour, and a stiff gale was blowing against us. Once or twice, in the narrows, we positively stood still for five or ten minutes at a time, and the chief engineer was considerably chaffed about his beloved engines not moving the vessel ahead at all. We reached our anchorage safely at half-past four, and soon afterwards many people came off to the yacht. I was too tired to see them, but I am told they appeared greatly interested in their inspection. Some of our own party went ashore in the afternoon to lawn-tennis, and Mr. Milman came back with them to dinner.

Darnley Island; the Shore

Darnley Island; the Shore

Thursday, August 25th.—We were to have been off, first at daybreak, and then at 9 a.m. When Mr. Milman and Mrs. Hunt, the wife of the missionary, whom we were going to413 convey to Darnley Island, appeared on board, it was blowing a strong gale of wind nearly dead in our teeth, and the voyage did not offer a very cheerful prospect. As we had made all arrangements, we thought it better to proceed. At half-past six we started, and, passing Ninepin Rock and Saddle Island, soon found ourselves in a channel full of reefs, rocks, islands, islets, and dangers seen and unseen, which made the navigation an anxious task for Tom. He was ably assisted by Mr. Milman. It was a most unpleasant morning, and, keeping quietly down in my berth, I think I was better off than some of those on deck. After passing Ninepin and Saddle Islands, and the three island-sisters, Poll, Bet, and Sue, we made Cocoa-nut Island, one of the few high islands we have seen to-day. During the afternoon the navigation continued to be intricate, but shortly after sunset we made York Islands, under the lee of the larger of which we anchored for the night in tolerably sheltered water. The York Islands are two in number, connected with each other at low water by a sandy spit. A semicircular reef four miles long and nearly two miles414 broad extends along the south side of the islands, the larger of which is one and a half mile long, and lies towards the western end of the reef, while the other is on its north-eastern extremity. There are only two white men living on York Islands; one is an English gentleman, and the other bears the name of Yankee Ned. He is the proud possessor of a telescope which, he declares, belonged either to Captain Cook or Admiral La Pérouse. It bears marks of great antiquity, but there is no name or descriptive mark to show that it ever really was used by such distinguished navigators. These two men have a very large bêche-de-mer station here, which they manage with the aid of some natives, and make over 1,000l. a year out of it.

Friday, August 26th.—The wind was blowing stronger than ever to-day at daylight. We got under weigh at six as prearranged, but were no sooner out of the shelter of the island than Tom came to ask if it would not be better, on my account, to turn back, for we should have fifty miles or more beating dead in the wind's eye to Murray Island, besides which the weather was so thick that we should have some difficulty in seeing the unsurveyed coral reefs through which we must pass. The only objection to this course was that we had promised to convey Mrs. Hunt to her new mission station at Murray Island. We finally decided to proceed as far as Darnley Island, which we should necessarily pass on the way to Murray Island; so, passing Campbell, Stevens, and Nepean Islands, at which innumerable cross-bearings were taken, we anchored off Darnley Island precisely at half-past ten. It is very pretty as seen from the sea, with large groves of cocoa-nut trees growing right down to the shore. On the higher ground the cleared slopes of grass give it at a distance something of the look of an English park. At half-past eleven we all landed, being only too glad to have dry land once more beneath our feet, after the shaking and tossing415 about of the last twenty-four hours. All our anxieties as to Mrs. Hunt were relieved by seeing her husband's schooner, the 'Mary,' riding quietly at anchor in the bay. The difficulties of landing were great, for the tide was low and the poor gig kept bumping against the coral-reefs and rocks to such an extent that I was afraid she would have a hole knocked in her bottom. However, some of the natives came out to help us, and, wading waist-deep in the water, guided us into a small channel, and from thence carried us one by one ashore. I was borne in my chair straight to the house of the chief, who is called King Jack, and who, with his wife, was anxious to welcome and shake hands with us all. The flag flying before his trim little cottage—red with a yellow cross—did not satisfy King Jack at all, so we promised him a blue Jack for use on future festive occasions.

At the back of the village a grove of cocoa-nuts waving in the strong sea-breeze put me in mind of a South Sea island, such as we so often landed on in going round the world in 1870. Even the dress of the natives was just the same, consisting of the original long George II. sack, brought out by the first missionaries, with its original shape somewhat lost and altered by the lapse of long years and the variety of hands through which the pattern has passed. We rested in the back garden for some time. The chief's men climbed the trees and brought us down fresh cocoa-nuts, giving us the milk and the nice creamy substance which lines the shell when the nuts are quite young. This is most delicious, and is a dainty one never has a chance of tasting in England, for it is quite different to the dried-up and aged cocoa-nuts to be procured from Covent Garden. We took some photographs of the groups of natives and of the curious native boats, hollowed out of a single trunk, which were lying pulled up on the shore before us. The larger canoes are made from timber grown in New Guinea, which must be much larger than any trees we saw416 growing on the island. After a short delay I was carried by some native policemen through a little village consisting of a few circular and oblong houses made of plaited grass and thatch, all of which had been so familiar to one's eyes in the South Seas. It was quite like old times to see these dwellings again, and some of them were actually occupied by genuine South Sea Islanders—Kanakas. The men of these islands are very similar in appearance to that race, though I think the type here is finer.

Darnley Island Darnley Island

At the end of the village stood the missionary's house, which was a superior abode to the others. It has been built and is kept for the use of white missionaries when they come over from the other islands. The native teachers generally live in a little grass hut at the side, and content themselves with gazing at the 'mansion'—a small dwelling, consisting of only one main room and two side-rooms off it, with deep verandahs all round. The native teacher is a well-educated417 Kanaka. His wife is of the same race, and is pleasant and agreeable. She seemed to keep her house, hut, and children very tidy. Our path led up from here through banana and cocoa-nut groves, with an undergrowth of sweet potatoes, to the top of a little hill about 150 feet high. Close to the rather dilapidated native church we found a beautiful sward of grass shaded by cocoa-nut trees, where we established ourselves to rest and look at the view. After a time the others joined us, and we took some photographs before lunch, and then the party went off in different directions—some to the windward beach to see what shells could be collected; but they were not very successful in their quest, the violence of the waves having either killed or broken most of the specimens found. Others went clambering up to the top of the high hills; while Mr. Milman sat in my carrying-chair and held a sort of open-air court. The natives formed a picturesque group on the grass around him. He found out all the news of the place since he had last been here, and inquired into the administration of justice in a sort of pigeon-English somewhat difficult to understand.

There was only one crime to report. A poor woman had been guilty of what they called 'telling tales'—namely, saying that the laws of Murray Island were good, but that at Darnley Island they were 'very bad.' For this the old chief, King Jack, promptly fined her 200 cocoa-nuts, which, by the way, we bought for 10s., knowing what a welcome addition they will prove to our own and the crew's diet, for fresh vegetables are difficult to procure. Mr. Milman has taken the precaution of planting these islands with cocoa-nuts, and he allows the people to keep a certain number, so that there is a definite and just way of punishing them if they offend against the law, by fining them so many cocoa-nuts. The money paid for the cocoa-nuts goes into the national exchequer; and although the amount realised is not large, as may be418 imagined, it contributes to the cost of repairs or improvements.

During the afternoon 'Sir Roger' performed some of his tricks for the amusement of the assembled natives. Their delight was intense and unbounded. Though he may have had a more crowded, he never had a more enthusiastic, audience. The performance was repeated several times, but the natives never seemed to weary of it. I thoroughly enjoyed the trip to the island to-day, and found it delicious to lie lazily under the shade of the cocoa-nut trees and listen to just as much or as little as I liked of what was going on round me. The rustle of the wind through the long leaves of the cocoa-nut trees is far more calm and peaceful than even the murmur of the 'immemorial elms;' and the glimpses of the sea, dotted by small islands and coral reefs, on which the waves broke in beautiful creamy foam, were most lovely. About four o'clock we went down again to the village, passing through tracts of cultivated ground bearing crops of sweet potatoes. On our way we paused to admire the church bell—an ancient dinner-bell, which hung by a piece of string from the longest and scraggiest arm of a very old and leafless tree. All the rest of the party were assembled on the beach, and a brisk trade was being done in corals, shells, and cocoa-nuts, paid for in tobacco, which the islanders much prefer to money. The teacher's wife was made happy by the gift of a reel of white cotton and a packet of needles, which will enable her to carry out her dressmaking operations and repairs with much greater ease. Her eyes quite glistened as she took them. Mr. Savage told me that the two Regina birds-of-paradise tails which I bought to-day were obtained from a native of New Guinea who lives on the island of Peram, at the mouth of the Fly River. From this man's account, the birds must abound there; but I cannot help regretting that the poor creatures should be sacrificed merely to line the cloaks of rich ladies.419

While we were up on the hill the crew had been engaged in procuring water to replenish our fast-failing stock. They had had great labour in bringing off the water, for the well is half a mile from the beach, and the sea was very rough. We only got a ton after all, when we should have liked a dozen or fourteen tons! Soon after our return on board a number of boats followed us, laden with baskets of sweet potatoes, yams, pumpkins, cocoa-nuts, shells, coral, &c. So great was the supply that the deck of the ship soon became covered with native produce, the owners of which, like all true savages, considered it a matter of etiquette and dignity not to express the least surprise or astonishment at anything they saw, although somewhat taken aback by the pictures and large looking-glasses. They were very pleasant and obedient, doing exactly what they were told without touching anything.

Though feeling much the better for my outing, I became tired, and was glad to lie down and rest in the deck-house. The little mission schooner, the 'Mary,' with a dove and olive-branch on her flag as a message of peace, was tossing and rolling about in the most unpleasant manner, exposing her keel at almost every wave, first to windward and then to leeward. Her captain and crew, a fine, determined-looking set of Kanaka men, did not seem to mind the sea at all. I pity poor Mr. and Mrs. Hunt, who will have to make their voyage to Murray Island to-morrow in the teeth of this heavy wind. Mrs. Hunt remained on shore, but Mr. Hunt and Mr. Savage came on board to dinner; and from Mr. Savage I heard a good deal of his work among the natives. The station here is comparatively small, but at Murray Island a training-school for native teachers has been established, that island being somewhat larger than this, surrounded by live coral reefs, and containing about 400 inhabitants. Their principal field of mission operations among the natives appears to be in the Fly River in New Guinea, which is a most unhealthy spot. Their work420 is now beginning to be attended with a large measure of success. At first no attempt was made to teach the Papuans English. The missionaries were the only people who could communicate with the natives. The ignorance of English proved a great drawback to all trade, and it has certainly retarded for years to come the opening up of the country. Not only is the climate bad, but the natives of New Guinea are treacherous, and not to be depended on for a moment.

Curios from Murray Island Curios from Murray Island

Mr. Savage has been out here for two years, thirteen months of which time he has lived entirely by himself. Mr. and Mrs. Hunt are now going to inhabit Murray Island, with only one European carpenter as their companion, while Mr. Savage will be stationed principally at the Fly River. The mission receives all its supplies from England viâ Thursday Island, from which place they are fetched in the little schooner, built by the carpenter Bruce, who was formerly a yacht-builder. The life of these good people appears to be one of421 much self-abnegation. I hope with all my heart that the mission may succeed, and that the devoted missionaries will be rewarded for their self-denying exertions.

Saturday, August 27th.—A grey morning, with the wind blowing stronger than ever. Navigation in these seas is by no means easy. During the night we had dragged our anchor a little, enough to get unpleasantly near the shore; and just as we weighed, the sails did not fill so quickly as they ought to have done, which caused the yacht to pay off with her head towards the shore instead of off shore. There was barely a ship's length between us and the reef. It was with great difficulty, and only by promptly dropping the anchor, that we prevented ourselves from running straight on to shore. On first starting we thought we should only get to Bet Island, one of the three sisters. These islets swarm with turtle, which lay their eggs on the sandy shores all the year round. We were looking forward to turtle soup, turtle eggs, and all sorts of delicacies, to make a pleasant change in the monotony of our daily fare. The wind, however, blew so fresh that, though close-reefed, we sailed from ten to twelve knots an hour, which of course caused a considerable amount of motion.

At a little before noon to-day we were off Cocoa-nut Island. Later we passed in succession the Bet, Sue, and Poll Islands, and the Ninepin Rock, a curious-shaped little islet, though anything less like a ninepin I cannot imagine. In the afternoon, by dint of hard driving, we were able to reach a good anchorage in Flinders Channel, between Horn and Wednesday Island. As an instance of the rapidity of our sailing speed, I may mention that seven measured miles between the two islands was done in rather less than half an hour; which, considering we were close-hauled, was not bad work. We had a fairly quiet night, though it was blowing a gale, and of course the ship tumbled and rocked about a good deal.

Sunday, August 28th.—As the tide was running very422 strong, it was decided not to start until eleven o'clock. We therefore had prayers before starting, and sailed slowly across to our old anchorage, which we reached about midday.

In the afternoon I was carried ashore to see Mrs. Milman, who appears to be a great invalid. She has two nice little girls, who look after the house and save their mother a great deal of trouble. There was another little girl there, a daughter of Canon Taylor, who had come up from Cooktown on a visit.



The Residency is a pleasant house, open to every breath of wind that blows; of which, according to our experience of these parts, there is plenty. The inhabitants tell us that this is the normal condition of the weather here during nine months of the twelve. No doubt these breezes are health-giving, but the perpetual blowing of the wind must be fatiguing. It roars and whistles and shakes the house like an incessant hurricane. The three months during which there is no wind is at the period of the north-east monsoon, and then the rain descends in torrents. Life during this time of the year at Thursday Island is described as being dreary indeed.

We returned on board at half-past five, and everybody but myself landed again later, and went to church at half-past seven at the Court House. Mr. Milman read prayers and a sermon, and Tom read the lessons.

In the Torres Straits

In the Torres Straits

Monday, August 29th.—A very windy morning. Some pearl-merchants came on board, bringing fine specimens of pearls, which seem quite as costly here as in London. I bought some shells, more as specimens of queer freaks of nature than for any intrinsic beauty or value they possessed. In the afternoon we landed again on Thursday Island, and Tom and I explored the little town, round which I was carried in a comfortable chair. The place is larger than I expected, and the stores seemed well furnished with dry goods of all kinds, besides tinned meats, vegetables, and fruit; but there are no fresh provisions. A few goslings, very like our wild geese, but423 not so big as a good-sized duck, were running about, for which the owners asked 30s. apiece! There were also some chickens to be bought for 10s. each. Some of the houses are really not unsightly when seen from a distance, but when you approach them the adjacent ground is found to be strewn with straw, paper, old tins, broken bottles, and rubbish of every description. I should like to have all the rubbish taken out to sea and sunk, and then I would plant more trees and shrubs. At present some miserable-looking cocoa-nuts, and a few hibiscus-bushes, with their bright red blossoms, comprise everything in the way of vegetation. On our way from the town to the Residency we passed Mr. Symes's house. His mother very kindly came out to welcome us, and asked us to go into their comfortable bungalow and have some tea, which we were most thankful for. I was so tired. Mrs. Symes had a married daughter and two nice little grandchildren living with her, and we had a pleasant chat. She424 gave me what she says is an infallible cure for bronchitis, and I only hope it may prove so. I spoke to Mrs. Symes and her daughter, to whom I had previously sent papers, about the Ambulance; and they appeared to be quite keen about it, and promised to do all in their power to aid any classes that might be established here. Continuing our walk we went to the excellent lawn-tennis ground just below Mr. Milman's house. We could only make a short stay, for the sun had set and it was rapidly getting dark. The sea was rough going off, and I felt rather exhausted by the time I arrived on board. Mr. Hall and Dr. Salter came to dinner, and with the latter I had a long talk about the Ambulance. Dr. Salter is quite willing to give the lectures, but there would be great difficulty in bringing people together for the classes, for the tides are strong and shifty, and so uncertain that one can never know till the morning what they are going to be. The Doctor says the only chance of inducing people to come will be to find out approximately the most convenient day and hour and then hoist the signal on the flagstaff, so that the inhabitants of the neighbouring islands may see it and attend if they choose. Several of the masters and managers of the pearl-shelling stations have promised to come themselves, and then to try and pass on the knowledge they may acquire to their Malay, Manilla, and other 'boys' who go out pearl-fishing and after bêche-de-mer. The instructions will be useful to these people, for accidents often happen, principally from their own carelessness. The divers are sometimes hoisted up to the surface asphyxiated from want of air, and requiring almost precisely similar treatment to the apparently drowned. Only last week they had a man on board one of the schooners very nearly dead, but still able to speak and move. Instead of attempting to relieve him they brought him here, a distance of fifteen miles; and by the time he arrived, of course the little spark of life he had possessed was quite extinguished.425 If only a knowledge such as that conveyed by the instructions given by the St. John Ambulance Association can be spread here, particularly among the people employed at the pearl-fishing stations, it will be most valuable. There are a great many men engaged in the pearl trade in the Torres Straits, New Guinea, and the numerous islands in the vicinity. It is, of course, impossible to establish a centre here; but I hope before I leave to set a class on foot, with Mr. Hall for the secretary, as he is most enthusiastic on the subject. Tom and I will, as usual in such cases, become life members, so as to give the movement a start.

Church on Darnley Island

Church on Darnley Island





(By Lord Brassey.)

The pen having fallen from her hand, the task which a brave yet gentle spirit was struggling so hard to complete must be accomplished by one who does not possess her gifts. For obvious reasons, the description of the remainder of the voyage will be compressed within the closest limits.

The 'Sunbeam' sailed from Thursday Island on September 1st. For three days the winds were favourable, from the eastward. The next two days being calm, the voyage was pursued under steam.

On September 5th, in the evening, the 'Sunbeam' was navigated, not without difficulty, through the intricate channels of Clarence Strait. On the 6th, at an early hour the anchor was dropped off the settlement of Palmerston. Our arrival at Port Darwin took place under such circumstances as render it impossible to offer any description from personal observation.

Palmerston, the name given to the settlement at Port Darwin, is beautifully situated on wooded headlands, jutting out into the harbour, in whose ample waters it is no figure of speech to say the navies of Europe could be anchored. The buildings have been erected with considerable taste. A fine esplanade has been laid out along the sea front. The electric wire connects Palmerston with all the great colonies of Australia. In constructing the overland telegraph from South Australia, a great middle section of the428 continent was discovered, capable of producing pasture for tens of millions of sheep and millions of cattle and horses. The first section from the north, of what will eventually be the Trans-Australian Railway, has been commenced, and is being carried out with energy by Messrs. Miller, the well-known Melbourne contractors for public works.

The total area of the northern territory of South Australia is 523,620 square miles. Within this vast expanse are stony wastes and waterless tracts, vast rolling downs, wide grassy plains, rich alluvial flats, large navigable rivers, and metalliferous areas, exceptionally rich in tin, coal, copper, and silver. Thus far mining has been more successful than agriculture. The Chinese have alone been able to accomplish anything in cultivation. They have gathered harvests of rice and sugar-cane from the limited areas which they have taken in hand. On the banks of the rivers coffee could be grown in many places.

The climate is tropical, and malaria, with its fever and ague, is prevalent. The mean temperature of the year is 75 degrees, and the thermometer has never been seen lower than 68 degrees. The atmosphere is dank, steamy, and heavy with moisture during the wet season, and parching and malarial during the dry season.

From Port Darwin to the Cape of Good Hope, and thence to Sierra Leone, the voyage lay for the most part within the zone of the South-east Trades. Rodriguez Island was sighted on September 26th, and Mauritius was reached on September 29th. It is a painful task to attempt to describe scenes which would have been painted so much more effectively by another. To give the daily life, which, needless to say, was very sad, I will not attempt.

Mauritius is one of the few ports in which sailing ships still hold the field against steamers. It was filled with a noble fleet. As a mark of sympathy, which touched us deeply, their flags were hoisted at half-mast as soon as our sad intelligence became known.

Viewed from the anchorage of Port Louis, the island of Mauritius presents a scene of much beauty. A chain of peaks and craters of picturesque and fantastic forms runs through the island from end to end. The needle-shaped Peter Botte, 2,784 feet, and the Pouce, 2,707 feet, are conspicuous summits. All the mountains are of volcanic formation. Their barren precipices are blue and purple, and their vegetation, watered by frequent and abundant showers, is of the richest green. The landscape displayed admirable effects of colour, varying with every change from rain to sunshine.

The Botanical Gardens and the Observatory are the most429 interesting objects which Port Louis offers to the passing traveller. The gardens are lovely. The lakes, surrounded by palm trees and a most rich and abundant tropical vegetation, are a charming feature. The fine and rare specimens in the gardens included the Traveller's tree, abounding in water, the Ruffia palm from Madagascar, the lettuce-headed palm, the talipot palm, the Latania aurea from Rodriguez, and another variety of latania from Round Island.

St. Louis, Mauritius

St. Louis, Mauritius

The Observatory, under the supervision of Dr. Meldrum, is chiefly devoted to meteorological and astronomical investigations. In addition to these subjects, observations of the solar spots are taken daily, and transmitted monthly to the Solar Physics Committee in London. The transit of the moon has been observed with much success. Sea observations from the log-books of vessels touching at Mauritius are carefully recorded. The tracks and positions at noon of 299 tropical cyclones, which swept over the Indian Ocean south of the equator from 1856 to 1886, have been laid down on charts, and are ready for publication. The in-curving theory of430 cyclones, as worked out by Dr. Meldrum, is now generally adopted, and it would appear that the rules given for the guidance of ships in the Southern Indian Ocean have been the means of saving much life and property.

On the second day of our short stay we paid a quiet visit to the Acting Governor. The recent political convulsions in Mauritius, in connection with Sir John Pope Hennessy, had by no means subsided. During his leave of absence the Governor was being represented with admirable tact and judgment by Mr. Fleming, who had already succeeded in establishing amicable relations with both sides. Considerable jealousies exist between the English and French residents in Mauritius. They have been unfortunately aroused to an unprecedented degree of violence by the proceedings of Sir John Pope Hennessy. The mass of the population of Mauritius are of mixed race, descendants of the coolies employed on the plantations. French—or rather patois—speaking Creoles come next in point of numbers. The Chinese are the universal shopkeepers.

Later in the day we ascended the Pouce. It commands a view over the harbour of Port Louis and the interior of the island. The broad and shallow valleys, green with sugar-cane, reminded us much of our own South Downs. From the Pouce we drove to the residence of a relative, who is the owner of extensive sugar-cane plantations. The staple industry of Mauritius is the cultivation of sugar. More than 100,000 tons are annually exported. India and Australia are the chief markets. The bounty on the production of sugar in France and Germany has driven the sugar of Mauritius altogether out of Europe. Mauritius received a great blow from the opening of the Suez Canal, but it still possesses abundant resources. The wealth of the island may in some degree be measured by its public revenue, which amounts to no less than 700,000l. a year.

Mauritius produces scarcely anything required for its own consumption. It imports rice from India, grain from Australia, oxen from Madagascar, and sheep from the Cape.

Our last morning at Port Louis was devoted to the defences and the docks. Progress is being made with the improvement of existing defences and the construction of new forts. The works are well advanced, and the guns are promised shortly from home. Mauritius possesses three graving-docks. The Albion Dock could be readily enlarged to receive a ship of war. It would be a wise policy on the part of the Government to assist in the work.

The passage from Port Louis to Algoa Bay occupied eleven days. To the southward of the Trades, off the coast of Natal, a short but431 severe gale from the south-west was encountered. The gale was followed by a fresh breeze from the east, which carried the 'Sunbeam' rapidly to the westward. In three days a distance of 797 miles was covered, with winds from S.E. to N.E.

The 'Sunbeam' reached Port Elizabeth on October 12. The anchorage is protected from all winds except those from the south-east. Port Elizabeth from the sea has the aspect of a small Brighton. On landing it presents many cheerful indications of prosperity in its pier, railway station, municipal buildings, streets and shops, and last, but not least in the estimation of the traveller, its excellently appointed and hospitable club. The residential quarter is happily situated on elevated ground, swept by refreshing breezes from the ocean. A large space is covered with good houses and well-kept lawns. The public gardens are a great feat of horticulture. The arid and sterile soil has been converted by liberal irrigation into a green oasis, containing groves of palms and a varied tropical vegetation. Needless to say the work is the achievement of a Scotch gardener.

The prosperity of this active commercial centre is due to the trade carried on with Kimberley, of which it is the port. The value of the diamonds produced at Kimberley was estimated for 1883 at 2,359,000l.; 1884, 2,562,000l.; 1885, 2,228,000l.; and 1886, 3,261,000l. These amounts will be exceeded in later returns. As yet, the price per carat shows no tendency to decline. The work of mining for diamonds gives employment to a large amount of well-paid labour. Some 2,000 white employés are engaged at an average wage of 5l. 9s. per week. Twelve thousand coloured men are working under their direction, their earnings exceeding 1l. per week.

Port Elizabeth is the chief entrepôt for ostrich feathers. The value of this article of export for 1886 was over half a million sterling. The process of selling the feathers by auction is one of the most singular business transactions at which it has been my lot to assist. One of the buyers in attendance, on the occasion of our visit, represents a London firm, and is said to be making an income of over 1,000l. per year. A spirited effort is being made to establish an entrepôt for the Cape wines at Port Elizabeth. We visited the extensive cellars under the public market, where a company has opened a business, which it is intended to conduct in accordance with the most approved methods of treatment in the wine-growing districts of Europe.

A day was spent at Port Elizabeth, and two days of rapid sailing432 before an easterly wind brought the 'Sunbeam' into Table Bay on the morning of October 15, just in time to gain the anchorage before one of the hard gales from the south-east, which are not unfrequently experienced at the Cape, set in. Between Port Darwin and the Cape the distance covered was 1,047 knots under steam, and 5,622 knots under sail. The average speed under steam and sail was exactly eight knots. In the fortnight, October 13 to 27, 3,073 knots, giving an average speed of nine knots an hour, were covered under sail alone, with winds of moderate strength. Balloon canvas was freely used.

Off the Cape

Off the Cape

Table Mountain is admirably described by Hübner as a mighty buttress confronting the restless billows of the Southern Ocean. It was covered, on the morning of our arrival, with the graceful wreaths of mist which have so often excited the admiration of travellers. A strong south-east gale was blowing on the occasion. Table Mountain presents to the dwellers in Cape Town a scene of beauty which changes from hour to hour. Every veering of the433 wind brings some new yet ever effective adjustment of a mantle of vapour, seldom cast aside, which is sometimes silver, sometimes purple, and from time to time subdued to a sombre tone by an approaching fall of rain.

In former years many and disastrous were the losses of life and property in Table Bay. Gales from the N.W. and the NN.E. are frequent in the winter, and blow occasionally with resistless fury. In the old sailing days ships caught at anchor in the bay by one of these terrible storms were doomed to destruction. By the enterprise of the Colonial Government, and the skilful engineering of Sir John Coode, a wide area of sheltered anchorage is now afforded. The breakwater has been extended to a length of 560 yards, and a further extension is far advanced, which will give a total length of breakwater of 1,500 yards.

A wet dock has been formed, capable of receiving the largest steamers in the ocean mail service, and broad enough for an ironclad. The principal dimensions are: length, 540 feet; breadth, 68 feet; depth, 26 feet. An outer harbour, 44 acres in extent, will be gradually formed under the protection of the breakwater. When these works are completed, Cape Town will afford advantages to shipping such as are scarcely exceeded in any port of Great Britain.

Cape Town contains not a few buildings of which the inhabitants of an older capital might justly be proud. The House of Assembly is a noble structure. The admirably kept and beautifully situated Observatory, the banks, the railway station, and the docks are all excellent. The Botanical Gardens, and the shady avenue dividing them from Government House, would be an adornment to the finest capital in Europe.

Considerable as are the attractions of Cape Town, they are far exceeded by the charm of its picturesque suburbs, extending for some miles along the foot of Table Mountain on its eastern side. The country is richly wooded, chiefly with our own dear English trees, and abounds with pleasant buildings, surrounded with gardens bright with the flowers of the summer of our Northern latitudes. The scene recalls the most favoured part of Surrey. The cantonments of the troops at Wynberg, on a well-wooded plateau, have all the lovely features of an English park.

We made an excursion with Sir Gordon Sprigg and his kind family to Constantia, where the Government have purchased an old Dutch manor-house, and are cultivating the vine under the superintendence of Baron Von Babo, with the view of producing434 wines on the most approved European principles. Our host has made one of those interesting and honourable careers for which colonial life offers so many opportunities to those who know how to use them. He began life in the gallery of the House of Commons, as a reporter of debates, in the days of Cobden. As Premier of a Colonial Parliament, he has had an opportunity of applying the maxims of political wisdom gathered from a close observation of our own Parliamentary proceedings.

Another excursion was made to Stellenbosch, a characteristic example of the old Dutch towns of the Cape Colony. We were under the guidance of Sir Gordon Sprigg, Mr. Hofmeyr, and Mr. Tudhope, the Colonial Secretary. The journey from Cape Town occupied an hour by railway. Stellenbosch is in many ways a perfect reproduction of a country town in Holland. If we miss the canals, we have the domestic architecture, the fine avenues running through the principal streets, and the Dutch characteristics of the people. These features give to this distant settlement in South Africa, not one of whose inhabitants probably has ever visited Holland, a markedly national aspect.

On our arrival at Stellenbosch we were driven, under the guidance of the Mayor, to the University, where a mixed staff of professors, English and Dutch, are doing excellent work in education. We were received by a guard of honour, furnished by the students' Volunteer Corps. Having inspected the University buildings, we drove out to an old Dutch farm, under a burning sun, and through a country in which the foliage of the temperate and the tropical zones was closely intermingled.

The farm we visited comprises an extensive range of buildings, with an excellent dwelling-house, roomy stables, and the stores, filled with butts of wine, which are characteristic of the district. The buildings form a large quadrangle, surrounding a plot of grass shaded by noble trees. The situation of the farm is very striking. It stands in a deep valley, green, fertile, and well watered, but completely hemmed in by mountains of volcanic formation some 4,000 feet in height, beautiful in form, but entirely devoid of vegetation. Want of rain and the phylloxera are constant anxieties at the Cape. We observed that the field labourers were invariably men of colour. Their earnings do not exceed one shilling per day.

Cape politics have been a fertile source of trouble and anxiety to the British Government at home. With the necessarily imperfect knowledge of local circumstances, it is impossible, from London, to deal in a satisfactory manner with the relations between435 the Government of a distant colony and neighbours so little known as the Boers, and savages so rude as the Kaffirs and Zulus. Our errors of the past will not be repeated, if only we resolve firmly not to fetter the discretion of the local Governments, which, in pursuance of a wise policy, we have called into existence.

St. Helena

St. Helena

The visit of President Kruger, of the Transvaal, to President Brand, of the Free State, was a prominent topic at the time of our visit. It had led to the delivery of a speech by Mr. Kruger, in which he had declared the determination of the Boers to preserve their complete independence. In the Cape Colony people are more interested in the establishment of railway communication436 with the new gold-fields within the borders of the Transvaal than in the question of political union. As yet a certain reluctance is manifested by the Boers to establish railway communication with the Cape. An English company has made a railway from Delagoa Bay to the Transvaal frontier, and the line will shortly be extended to Pretoria. In the meanwhile the people of the Cape Colony are desirous of extending their system of railways, already 1,483 miles in length, into the interior. Considerable discoveries of gold have recently been made within the limits of the Transvaal, but close to the border, and all the workers at the mines are Englishmen from the Cape Colony. There is no reason to doubt that permission to establish railway communication with this newly discovered gold-mining district will be ultimately granted.

Among the Boers of the Transvaal a large number are friendly to the English. Once connected with the Cape by railway, and by a Customs union, which has been much under discussion, the Cape Colony and the Transvaal will be for all practical purposes of trade united. A divided administration of government in a country of such wide extent is an unmixed advantage.

It was particularly gratifying to hear from Mr. Hofmeyr, the head of the Dutch party in the Cape Parliament, and a most able representative of the Colony in the late Colonial Conference, how entirely satisfied his people are to live under British rule as now conducted. The Dutch colonists at the Cape have no personal relations with Holland. They look back upon their former connection as an interesting historical association; but the protection which England affords against the occupation of the Cape by some other foreign power is a practical boon, and one greatly valued. There is a party at the Cape which regards with disfavour the dependence of the present Premier, Sir Gordon Sprigg, on the Dutch vote, or, as it is called, the Africander Bond. From another point of view we may hail with satisfaction the success which an Englishman has achieved in winning the confidence of the Dutch. While conducting the government to their satisfaction, he is thoroughly loyal to his own nationality. Baron Hübner speaks in discouraging tones of our position at the Cape. A much more cheerful impression was conveyed by the present able Governor, Sir Hercules Robinson, and by other eminent men whom I had an opportunity of consulting.

Judging from such indications as came under our personal notice, the native races, so far from being a source of weakness, are a great strength to the colony. The Indians in North America,437 the Maoris in New Zealand, the aborigines of Australia, have disappeared or dwindled away before the white man. The Zulus and Kaffirs have proved themselves capable of adopting and promoting civilisation. They show in numerous instances a high appreciation of the blessings of education. They are ready to labour on the farms, on the railways, and in the mines. They are content to live under the rule of a superior race.

Longwood, St. Helena

Longwood, St. Helena

Material prosperity has been greatly advanced by the discoveries of gold, the opening up of gold-fields, and still more by the large amount of wealth which has been derived from the exportation of diamonds.

The 'Sunbeam' left Cape Town on October 24th. St. Helena was reached on November 3rd. Like all the islands of the Atlantic, it is of volcanic formation. It presents to the ocean on every side a coast-line of precipices, sharp peaks, and gloomy chasms. The contorted shapes of rock and mountain give a powerful impression of the tremendous forces of nature in a period of volcanic activity. The landing-place for St. Helena is under the lee of the island, at Jamestown, a small town depending entirely on shipping.438

Above Jamestown for some 2,000 feet the country is inexpressibly sterile. At a higher level the soil is watered by the frequent showers brought up from the ocean by the South-east Trades, and is covered with a rich carpet of grass. In every sheltered dell the growth of timber is abundant and varied, combining the trees of the tropics with those of our cold English latitudes. The water-courses are innumerable. The bed of every stream is filled, and every bank is covered with lovely masses of arum-lilies. The scenery of the island is most beautiful. The Acting Governor occupies a fine country house surrounded by a noble park. It is sad to visit Longwood, and to reflect on the intolerable weariness of such a place of confinement to the victor in many battles, and the former arbiter of the destinies of Central Europe.

A personal visit to St. Helena is necessary to appreciate the facilities for the defence of the island. The landing-places are few, and they are commanded by works of considerable strength. New works are in progress which will give an extended range of fire to seaward. The guns are not yet to hand. The expenditure recently authorised, amounting to some 10,000l., appears fully justified in view of the importance of St. Helena as a coaling station for the Cape route to the East. As a sanatorium it might be of great value to the ships of the African Squadron.

The 'Sunbeam' touched at Ascension on November 7th. This barren and inhospitable volcanic island has presented a singularly unpromising field of labour to the naval detachment which for many years has been maintained there. Solid and capacious stores, extensive ranges of buildings, miles of roads, the tanks, the hospitals on the seashore and on the mountain, the farm on the peak—a green oasis crowning a heap of cinders—attest the zeal of a succession of officers and men. To the naval reformer they give occasion for reflections on the considerable cost which has been thrown upon the country in the creation of an establishment which has become practically useless through the universal use of steam and the suppression of the slave trade. In the present circumstances St. Helena offers unquestionably superior advantages for all naval purposes. As a coaling station it is in a better position, being approximately equidistant between the Cape and Sierra Leone, and less exposed to rollers, which frequently interrupt the coaling of ships at Ascension. It is repugnant to abandon to utter ruin an establishment created with much labour and expense. To this alternative, however, we must come, unless we are prepared to put Ascension in a state of defence. The value of the naval stores is439 not less than 50,000l., and the ample stock of coal would offer an irresistible temptation to an enemy's cruiser. Three or four long-range, armour-piercing guns, with a few machine-guns, would give security against a coup de main. We should look to the fleet to prevent an attack in force.

Ascension. Green Mountain

Ascension. Green Mountain


Sierra Leone was reached on November 14th. In this section of the voyage the distance under canvas was 3,327 knots, the average speed 7·7 knots, and the distance under steam 289 knots, with an average speed of 7 knots. The South-east Trades were light, and balloon canvas again proved extremely serviceable.

Sierra Leone is an important coaling station, halfway between England and the Cape. The harbour is large and safe for ships of heavy tonnage. The works of defence are in active progress. The cost is estimated at 22,000l. for works and 15,000l. for armaments. It is to be regretted that the armament is almost entirely composed of muzzle-loading rifled guns. In addition to the works now in hand, a battery is thought desirable to prevent an attack with long-range guns from seaward. Having admitted Sierra Leone into the list of our coaling stations of the first class, its defence should be made complete against a powerful cruiser.

The British settlements on the West Coast of Africa date from 1672, when the British African Company was first formed. The British protectorate is estimated to extend over 3,000 square miles. Freetown, the capital, is built on a peninsula about eighteen miles long.

The town is backed by mountains of considerable elevation, richly wooded, and beautiful in outline. The streets are laid out with regularity on ground sloping rapidly to the river. The houses are of wood, and the roadways are unpaved. The population is 37,000. The throng at the landing-place has a decided family resemblance to any similar assemblage of the negro race in the West Indies. The general aspect is cheerful and free from care. The washerwomen, in Manchester print gowns of gorgeous colour, are conspicuous and grotesque personages.

At Sierra Leone the Church of England is strongly supported by the Church Missionary Society. It has a large body of adherents, and is the see of a Bishop. It has a college, affiliated to the Durham University, which has turned out coloured students of distinguished ability. My friend Mr. Blyden, author of 'Christianity, Islam, and the Negro Race,' is a distinguished leader of the higher culture among the negro race.

The capabilities of the coloured races are nowhere seen to greater advantage than at Sierra Leone. They supply the official staff of the Government. A coloured barrister of marked ability is the leader of the Bar, and makes a professional income of 3,000l. a year.

Sierra Leone Sierra Leone

The day seems drawing near when it will be no longer necessary441 to send Englishmen to administer the government in a climate so often fatal to the health of the European. The trade of Sierra Leone, in common with that of the Gold Coast generally, consists mainly in the exportation of the palm kernel, from which an oil much used in the manufacture of soap and candles is extracted. Marseilles and Hamburg are the chief442 centres of this business. The imports are mainly Manchester goods and spirits. The trade has fallen off in recent years owing to the constant warfare among the tribes bordering on the colony.

The greatest excitement prevailed in Sierra Leone at the time of our visit. An expedition was being sent to punish a neighbouring tribe for frequent deeds of violence to British subjects. It achieved a rapid success. The forces engaged consisted of the men of the West India regiment and some seamen of the ships. Sir Francis de Winton was in command, supported by Major Piggott and Captain Brown. Sierra Leone is the headquarters of the West India regiment stationed on the West Coast of Africa. Their number is 400. The barracks are a large and airy range of buildings, in a commanding situation on the heights above the town.

We breakfasted with the Acting Governor. An old fort has been adapted as the official residence. Its thick walls, originally built as a defence against the bullets of an enemy, give some protection from the heat of the African sun. The wide ramparts afford a shady walk, commanding lovely views of the town and harbour beneath, and the noble amphitheatre of mountains above. Sierra Leone would be delightful but for its climate and the fevers which it brings.

The 'Sunbeam' left Sierra Leone at sunset on November 15th under steam. The North-east Trades were picked up in latitude 11° N. A call of a few hours was made at Porto Praya on November 19th. The French frigate of instruction for cadets, the 'Iphigénie,' a heavily rigged ship of 4,000 tons displacement, had anchored on the previous day. Porto Praya wears the air of decay so commonly observable in foreign settlements under the Portuguese flag. The country is fertile, but progress is checked by the great weight of taxation, the public income being misapplied in keeping the unemployed in unprofitable idleness. We noticed a considerable number of able-bodied men hoeing weeds in the public square.

We found three kind Englishmen leading a life of exile, in charge of the station of the West African Telegraph Company. St. Vincent, the only island of the Cape de Verdes which has any trade, is a coaling station much used by steamers on the South American route.

On the day after leaving Porto Praya the 'Sunbeam' lay becalmed under the lee of St. Antonio. The anchorage used by us in 1876 was in view, as was also the house and plantation of which a443 drawing is given in my dear wife's 'Voyage in the Sunbeam.' There were many sad reminiscences as the former track of the 'Sunbeam' was crossed. On November 29th, without warning from the barometer, a strong gale commenced from the east, and lasted without intermission for four days. Under low canvas and close-hauled, the 'Sunbeam' gallantly struggled forward, making 130 knots, on November 29th, and on the three following days 112, 57, and 92 knots respectively. While hove-to in this gale the canvas was severely punished. All the lower sails were more or less damaged, and sail was reduced to storm trysails. Two large barques were passed lying-to under lower main topsails and mizen storm staysails. At dawn on December 2nd Fayal was sighted.

Barque Hove-to

Barque Hove-to

The gale was blowing dead on shore at Horta, and it was preferable to run for shelter under the lee of the island. As we closed the land, grand effects were produced by the clouds and mist driving before the gale down the green slopes of the mountains to the dark cliffs of lava and basalt, on which the mighty surges of the444 Atlantic were breaking into foam. Late in the afternoon of December 2nd the 'Sunbeam' gained the northern entrance to the channel which divides Fayal and Pico. An attempt was made to reach Horta, but it was found that a heavy sea was running into the anchorage. It was a pitchy night, and we determined to wait outside till daylight, standing across to Pico under steam for shelter from the wind and sea.

At dawn on the 3rd the moon was still shining on the northern face of the noble mountain, towering in solitary grandeur to a height of 7,800 feet. The snowy peak stood up from its mantle of clouds, and took the rosy hues of the morning. An hour's steaming carried us into the anchorage at Fayal, where we remained through the day of December 3rd. The passage from Sierra Leone to Fayal had been accomplished, with adverse winds during a considerable part of the voyage, in 16½ days, 2,005 knots being covered under sail at an average speed of 6·3 knots, and 460 miles under steam at an average speed of 6 knots.



We found several sailing vessels at anchor in the roadstead of Horta. One British vessel had come in for provisions, another to repair a damaged rudder. A barque hailing from Boston was one of a line which carries on a regular service under canvas between the Azores and America. They depend chiefly on passengers, who make the cruise for the sake of health. The Norwegian flag was445 represented by one most crazy wooden ship, 70 years old, and by another of nearly equal antiquity, and in a like condition of unseaworthiness. The captains of both the Norwegians were hoping that the surveyors might condemn them as unfit for further service.

Bearing up for Shelter

Bearing up for Shelter

Fayal offers especially favourable opportunities for the obsequies of an unseaworthy ship insured beyond her value. The danger to life from the attempt to navigate in vessels no longer fit to contend with storm and tempest can only be removed by compelling the owners to bear some share of the pecuniary risk.

The local prosperity depends mainly on shipping. Business is on the decline. The opening of the Suez Canal, the introduction of powerful iron and steel built ocean liners, which suffer comparatively little from the effects of heavy weather, and, as the people of Fayal allege, the legislation promoted by Mr. Plimsoll, which has withdrawn their best customers, the weakly and unsound vessels, from active service at sea, have combined to produce a marked diminution in the number of ships calling at the port. The whalers under the United States flag still make it their headquarters in the summer season. During the present year nine have446 been seen at the anchorage at the same time. Exciting chases in pursuit of the sperm whale sometimes take place in the channel between Fayal and Pico. Numerous whale-boats are kept on the island, and are instantly launched when a whale is seen near the shore. A breakwater is now in progress at Horta, but the work is proceeding with the customary festina lente method of the Portuguese.

Having taken in water and provisions, the voyage was resumed on the evening of December 3rd, with a favourable wind from the SS.E. At midnight the wind shifted suddenly to the north-east, and on the following morning the 'Sunbeam' bore up, before a severe gale, for shelter under the lee of Terceira. Late in the day the veil of lowering clouds was drawn aside, and the sun descending to the west, lighted up the landscape with a flood of golden light.

Terceira is of volcanic formation. Its highest ridges attain an elevation of 4,000 feet. The crests of the hills are clothed with forests of pine and rich pastures. At a lower level the indications of laborious cultivation are seen in range upon range of terraced gardens and vineyards. The island is densely inhabited, and the numerous white houses give an air of cheerfulness and prosperity to the scene, which recalls the more familiar charms of the Bay of Naples and the Straits of Messina.

On December 5th, the gale subsided to a calm, and the voyage homewards was commenced under steam. In a few hours the engines broke down, and sail was made to a light breeze from the north-east. On the succeeding days favourable winds were experienced from the westward. On the 11th the wind shifted to the south-east, accompanied by drizzling rain and fog, which rendered observations impossible, and which continued until the Scilly Island lights were sighted in a fortunate lifting of the haze, on the evening of the 12th. The run from the Scilly Islands to Spithead was made at the rate of 11½ knots an hour, before a south-westerly gale.

The total distance from Fayal, including the call at Terceira, was 1,440 miles, of which sixty only were under steam. The average speed was 7 knots. The 'Sunbeam' entered Portsmouth Harbour at noon on December 14.







Date Remarks Baro-
Temperature (Fahr.) Latitude Longitude Distance Wind
Water Air Steam Sail
Noon 6
1886     ° ° ° ° ° ´ ° ´      
Nov. 16 6 p.m. left Portsmouth. 8 p.m. arrived Cowes 12
17 9 a.m. left Cowes. 10 a.m. arrived Southampton. 6 p.m. sailed for Plymouth 52·6 10
18 ... ... ... 30·12 51 52 53·5 50.26 N 2.43 W 30 73 NW 5
19 8 a.m. arrived Plymouth. 2 p.m. sailed for Gibraltar 30·27 61 61 59 50.22 N 4.08 W 82 SW 3 to 4
20 8 a.m. rounded Ushant 30·30 59 59 58 48.18 N 5.42 W 126 23 SW 3 to 5
21 ... ... ... 30·35 59·5 61 60·5 45.02 N 8.22 W 152 40 SW ½ S 2
22 Noon, Cape Finisterre abeam 30·26 58 61 61 42.56 N 9.26 W 23 207 ESE 5
23 ... ... ... 30·26 60 62 62 62·5 40.25 N 10.07 W 45 121 E by N 3 to 4
24 ... ... ... 30·20 63 61 61 61·5 37.33 N 9.28 W 185 E 2 to 4
25 ... ... ... 30·08 67·5 62 61·5 60 36.26 N 7.52 W 115 ENE 3
26 3.30 p.m. arrived Gibraltar 29·98 65 59 60 60 35.52 N 5.40 W 36 111 E by S 7
27 ... ... ... 63 61 61·5 61 30
28 ... ... ... 62 61 62 61
29 11 a.m. sailed from Gibraltar for Port Said 61·5 61·5 62 62
30 ... ... ... 30·09 61·5 61·5 61·5 62 36.20 N 2.27 W 90 86 W 4. Calm
Dec. 1 ... ... ... 29·98 63·5 60 55 57 36.54 N 1.04 E 185 NNW to NNE 6 to 2
2 Called off Algiers 30·00 62·5 57 55 58 36.50 N 3.11 E 48 74 Variable
3 ... ... ... 29·97 63 60 55 61 37.27 N 6.23 E 158 SW to N 3 to 6
4 ... ... ... 29·91 65 57 53 55 37.35 N 9.59 E 179 NW to NNW 3 to 7
5 ... ... ... 29·97 65·5 60·5 61 60 36.15 N 14.25 E 240 NW 5 to 9
6 2 p.m. called off Malta 30·11 66 61 66 64 36.35 N 17.07 E 155 S to WNW 3 to 4
7 ... ... ... 30·13 68 62 67 65 34.33 N 20.14 E 147 16 Calm
8 Heavy rain. No observations 29·90 68·5 67 66 64 33.19 N 23.57 E 198 Calm449
9 ... ... ... 29·66 71 65 66·5 65 32.46 N 28.14 E 222 SW to W 6 to 9
10 Noon, anchored Port Said 30·05 70 64 66 62 31.18 N 32.21 E 4 238 W to WNW 6 to 7
11 8 a.m. left Port Said. 8 p.m. anchored off Ismailia 65 56 64 60 24
12 6.15 a.m. weighed anchor. 3 p.m. reached Suez. 5 p.m. sailed for Aden 63 54·5 70 63 66
13 ... ... ... 30·07 72 64 71 69 27.42 N 33.57 E 18 168 NNW to SW 4
14 ... ... ... 30·18 75 68 72 72 24.53 N 35.57 E 212 W to NW 3 to 6
15 ... ... ... 30·15 78 73 75 75·5 22.31 N 37.38 E 169 N to NNW 2 to 5
16 ... ... ... 30·15 81 77 79·5 79 20.18 N 38.32 E 209 N to NNW 4
17 ... ... ... 30·08 81·5 80 82·5 82 17.04 N 40.37 E 183 13 Calm
18 ... ... ... 29·98 80 80 81·5 81 14.36 N 42.35 E 188 S ½ E 3
19 4 p.m. Anchored in Assab Bay 30·05 79 79 80 79.5 13.14 N 42.37 E 114 SE to S by E 5 to 7
20 6.30 a.m. weighed anchor. 9 p.m. passed through Strait of Bab-el-Mandeb 30·00 78·5 78 79·5 79 13.09 N 43.07 E 50 SSE 6
21 ... ... ... 30·09 78 78·5 80 79 11.59 N 44.07 E 111 16 E to S by E 5
22 10 a.m. anchored in Aden inner harbour. Coaled, and sailed at 7 p.m. 30·18 79 80 83 80 12.46 N 44.59 E 69 68 E by N 4
23 ... ... ... 30·08 78·5 79 81·5 79·5 12.52 N 46.44 E 110 E 3 to 5
24 ... ... ... 30·18 78 78 80 78·5 13.53 N 49.09 E 168 ENE 3
25 ... ... ... 30·15 75·5 75 76 76 14.49 N 51.50 E 178 ENE 3 to 4
26 ... ... ... 30·16 77·5 75 76 75 15.19 N 53.43 E 162 NE by E 6
27 ... ... ... 30·21 78 74 76 75 15.41 N 55.02 E 68 86 NNE to E by N 6
28 ... ... ... 30·11 78 75 76 75 14.50 N 57.27 E 149 NE 6
29 ... ... ... 30·02 77 75 76 75 14.09 N 59.36 E 133 NNE 4
30 ... ... ... 30·08 78 75 77 76 13.41 N 62.11 E 16 146 NE to NNE 3
31 ... ... ... 30·07 78·5 75 77 76 15.01 N 65.02 E 190 NE 2
Jan. 1
... ... ... 30·08 78·5 75 77 76 16.22 N 68.03 E 192 NE 1
2 ... ... ... 30·08 80 75·5 80 77·5 17.49 N 71.08 E 173 28 NNE to N by W 3
3 4 a.m. made the Prongs Light. Lay-to until daylight. 3 p.m. arrived Bombay 78·5 76 77·5 76·5 1 139 N to NNE



Date Remarks Baro-
Temperature (Fahr.) Latitude Longitude Distance Wind
Water Air Steam Sail
Noon 6
1887     ° ° ° ° ° ´ ° ´      
Jan. 6 2 a.m. left Bombay 30·05 78·5 76 79 76·5 19.26 N 71.55 E 47 22 NNE 4
7 ... ... ... 30·04 76·5 73·5 76 73·5 20.46 N 70.16 E 135 NE by E to NW 3 to 5
8 Off Poubundu, Kattywar 30·08 75 71 75 73 21.34 N 69.30 E 115 N to NNE 1 to 3
9 ... ... ... 30·08 74·5 73 76 73 23.06 N 67.43 E 96 54 NW to W by S 1 to 3
10 6.10 a.m. arrived Kurrachi 70 67 69 67·5 132 SW to E 4 to 6
  From January 10th to February 7th at Kurrachi
Feb. 7 6 p.m. left Kurrachi 65 65 65 65
8 ... ... ... 30·18 70 65 69 66 22.20 N 67.55 E 168 W to NE by E 4 to 6
9 9 p.m. made Spit Light Bombay. Hove-to 30·11 74·5 68 71 70 19.48 N 71.22 E 268 NE 4 to 7
10 3 p.m. arrived Bombay 74 70 73·5 73 115 NE by N to N by E 4
11 ... ... ... 72 67 74 73 10
  From February 11th to February 22nd at Bombay
22 6.45 a.m. left Bombay. 11 p.m. lay-to off Rajpuri 77 79 81 79·5 20
23 8 a.m. anchored off Jinjeera Fort. 1 p.m. weighed anchor 29·93 79 80 83 81 18.17 N 72.55 E 87 NW to NNE 1 to 4
24 ... ... ... 30·00 80·5 80 81 81 17.35 N 73.00 E 50 NW 3. Calm
25 8 p.m. brought up in Aguada Roads 30·00 82 80 82 81 16.09 N 73.21 E 85 NNW to NNE 1 to 3
26 To Goa in steam launch. 8 p.m. weighed anchor 82·5 81 83 81·5 57 NNW 4
27 ... ... ... 29·96 83 82 83·5 82·5 13.39 N 73.41 E 115 WNW to NNW 3
28 ... ... ... 29·97 83 83 84·5 82·5 12.55 N 74.28 E 75 S 2 to N 1
Mar. 1 ... ... ... 29·98 83·5 83 86 82·5 11.33 N 75.13 E 95 Variable
2 ... ... ... 30·02 83·5 83·5 85 82 9.59 N 76.00 E 106 NNW to WNW 1 to 3
3 ... ... ... 30·12 83 82 84 82·5 8.13 N 76.48 E 120 W by S 4 to NW 1
4 ... ... ... 30·05 81·5 81·5 83·5 82 7.38 N 76.08 E 88 NW. Calm
5 9 a.m. arrived Colombo 30·00 82 80·5 83 80 6.56 N 79.50 E 98 12 Calm451
  From March 5th to March 8th at Colombo
8 1.15 a.m. left Colombo 30·02 82·5 80 81·5 81 5.56 N 80.25 E 86 Variable
9 7.30 p.m. anchored off Trincomalee dockyard 30·09 82 80·5 82 81·5 7.50 N 81.44 E 184
10 8.15 p.m. left Trincomalee 82 80·5 83 81 60
11 ... ... ... 30·05 81·5 80 83·5 82 9.45 N 83.04 E 140 Calm
12 ... ... ... 30·07 81·5 81 83 81·5 10.50 N 86.00 E 184 ENE 2
13 ... ... ... 30·07 82 81·5 83·5 81·5 12.17 N 88.55 E 195 ENE 2
14 4 p.m. made the Andamans 30·05 81·5 79 80 79 13.28 N 91.49 E 170 10 Calm. N by W 3
15 8 a.m. made Great Coco 30·05 81·5 79 79·5 79 14.06 N 93.29 E 120 NNW 2
16 Midnight anchored at mouth of Irrawaddy River 30·01 82 80 83 81 15.28 N 95.40 E 150 NNW to W by N 1 to 4
17 6 a.m. weighed anchor. 10.30 anchored at Rangoon 29·95 83 84 89 86 16.45 N 96.09 E 40 60
18 11.30 p.m. left Rangoon 83·5 83 87 88
19 1.30 p.m. anchored off Amherst 81 81 84 82 109
20 9 a.m. weighed. 1 p.m. anchored off Moulmein * 80·5 87 82·5 50
21 At Moulmein 81 86 82·5
22 1.30 p.m. left Moulmein. 5.30 p.m. passed out of river 80 82 81
23 ... ... ... 30·06 82 83 82 15.33 N 97.13 E 40 60 S by E to WSW 2
24 ... ... ... 30·05 82 84 84 14.32 N 97.26 E 101 SW to WSW
25 ... ... ... 30·02 82 85·5 83 11.41 N 97.14 E 130 40 Calm. E 4
26 11 p.m. passed Sayer's Islands 29·98 82 85 84 9.19 N 97.01 E 160 ENE to SE by E 3 to 5
27 6 a.m. made The Brothers 29·95 83 84 83 7.05 N 98.16 E 139 11 SE 5 to N 1
28 2 a.m. made Penang Light 29·92 84 84·5 83 5.01 N 100.02 E 170 S by E 4
29 In Macassar Strait 30·02 83 84 82 2.35 N 101.28 E 188 S by E
30 8 a.m. arrived Singapore 82 84 83 175 Calms and light airs
31 3 p.m. weighed. 7 p.m. arrived Johore 82 83 82
Apr. 1 11 a.m. weighed. 3 p.m. anchored Singapore 83 85 84 74
2 2 a.m. left Singapore. 6 p.m. Barren Island abeam 30·03 88 85 84·5 1.26 N 105.36 E 105 SW 2
3 10 p.m. anchored off Tanjong Po 30·05 83 85 84 2.04 N 109.10 E 225 Calms and light airs
4 6.30 a.m. weighed, and proceeded up Kuching River. 10 a.m. anchored off Sarawak. 7 p.m. sailed 83 83·5 83·5 113 452
5 ... ... ... 29·97 83 84 83 3.48 N 112.04 E Calms and light airs
6 7 a.m. made land; set by current 30 miles to ENE. 2 p.m. anchored Victoria Harbour, Labuan 83 85 82 230
7 7 a.m. weighed. 9 a.m. anchored off mouth of Brunei River. 5 p.m. weighed. 83 84·5 83·5 40
8 6 a.m. fine view of Kina Balu, 13,000 ft. 4 p.m. anchored Kudat 29·95 84 86 85 6.56 N 116.34 E 160 NE 2
9 6.30 a.m. left Kudat. 4.30 p.m. touched on coral patch, 6° 40´N. 117° 52´ E. Midnight arrived Sandakan 82 85 82·5 In Millewalle Channel 87 SE 1 to 2
10 At Sandakan 100 Calm
12 9.30 p.m. left Sandakan 81 84 82
13 6 p.m. anchored in Darvel Bay, off Silam 82 85 83 83·5 4.57 N 118.47 E 135 Calm
14 At Silam 82·5 86 83 54
15 8.45 a.m. left Silam. 9 p.m. entered Celebes Sea 83 84 84 4.40 N 118.34 E 32
16 ... ... ... 29·95 83 84·5 84 2.27 N 119.30 E 235 NW 2
17 7.15 a.m. crossed the line 29·92 86 87·5 86 0.51 S 118.50 E 207 Calm
18 8 a.m. off Cape Mandai. 11 p.m. hove-to off Spennar di Archipelago 29·89 84 87 85 4.14 S 211
19 12.15 p.m. arrived Macassar 83 85·5 84 144

* No temperature of water taken.



Date Remarks Baro-
Temperature (Fahr.) Latitude Longitude Distance Wind
Water Air Steam Sail
Noon 6
1887     ° ° ° ° ° ´ ° ´      
Apr. 20 8 p.m. left Macassar
21 ... ... ... 29·91 84 85·5 85 6.00 S 118.34 E 63 23 N 3 to 5
22 4 p.m. entered Allas Strait 29·87 85 83 84 7.56 S 116.56 E 174 NW to W by S 3 to 5
23 ... ... ... 29·92 81·5 81 80·5 9.52 S 116.39 E 66 62 W to SW by W 3 to 7
24 ... ... ... 30·02 80 80·5 80 11.52 S 116.39 E 127 S by W to W 3 to 5
25 6 p.m. slight showers. Picked up trade wind from S by E 30·05 80 80 80 13.59 S 114.52 E 158 8 Calm
26 ... ... ... 30·02 79·5 81 80 15.24 S 113.10 E 36 104 SSE
27 ... ... ... 29·96 78·5 78·5 78 16.56 S 111.32 E 131 SE to S by E 3
28 ... ... ... 30·01 76·5 77 77 18.43 S 109.24 E 148 S to SE by S 4 to 5
29 ... ... ... 30·03 76 75 74·5 20.25 S 107.31 E 143 SSE to SE by S 3 to 4
30 ... ... ... 30·12 72 73·5 72·5 22.27 S 105.35 E 162 S by E to SE 3 to 5
May 1 ... ... ... 30·18 69 70·5 69 24.39 S 104.14 E 153 SE by S to SE 4 to 6
2 ... ... ... 30·23 67 68·5 68 26.46 S 103.38 E 131 SE to ESE 2 to 6
3 ... ... ... 30·19 67 67 66·5 29.02 S 103.02 E 140 SE to SE by E 2 to 4
4 5 p.m. spoke 'Liguria' of Orient Line 30·20 64 65 64 30.22 S 104.20 E 86 40 Variable
5 Moderate gale with heavy squalls 30·10 62 60 60 31.29 S 105.48 E 136 WSW to SSW 7 to 10
6 ... ... ... 30·10 60 60·5 60 32.28 S 108.06 E 144 SW to SSW 7 to 4
7 ... ... ... 30·22 64 62 62·5 61 33.12 S 110.30 E 7 122 SW 2. Calm
8 ... ... ... 30·19 63·5 60 62 61 34.47 S 113.54 E 136 58 Calm. W 5
9 10 a.m. made West Point Howe. 4 p.m. arrived Albany, K.G. Sound 30·21 63 59 59 58 33 181 W to SW 4 to 5
  9th to 17th at Albany
17 11.15 a.m. weighed anchor 61 59 66 64 6
18 ... ... ... 30·03 61 63·5 66 64 35.38 S 119.54 E 10 100 E by N to NNW 4
19 ... ... ... 30·10 60·5 63 66·5 64 36.23 S 122.10 E 120 ENE to N by W 4
20 ... ... ... 30·18 60 63 67 64 36.25 S 125.13 E 148 NNW to NNE 3
21 ... ... ... 30·15 60 58 63 59 35.59 S 127.56 E 135 W to NW 2 to 4
22 1 to 3 p.m. blowing heavily 30·12 61 63 66 63·5 35.55 S 132.07 E 206 WSW to WNW 5 to 9
23 7 a.m. made Kangaroo Island. 7.30 p.m. hove-to off Glenelg 30·19 63 62 64·5 61·5 35.30 S 137.10 E 265 W to WSW 8 to 6
24 7.30 a.m. anchored off Glenelg 61 56 63 60 95



Date Remarks Baro-
Temperature (Fahr.) Latitude Longitude Distance Wind
Water Air Steam Sail
Noon 6
1887     ° ° ° ° ° ´ ° ´      
May 26 11 a.m. left Glenelg. 3 p.m. arrived Port Adelaide 60 59 64 61 23
  May 26th to June 3rd at Adelaide
June 3 7 a.m. left Port Adelaide 60 52 50 50 14 8
4 2 a.m. laid to. 9.30 a.m. rounded Cape Willoughby 29·94 59 48 49 48 36.06 S 138.23 E 103 SSW to W by N 4 to 7
5 Midnight, made Cape Otway light 29·84 57 47·5 47 47 38.57 S 140.55 E 200 S by W to W by S 4 to 8
6 Heavy gale. 3 p.m. arrived Williamstown 29·63 56·5 40 44 45 38.08 S 144.48 E 225 NW by W to SW 7 to 9
  7th to 29th at Melbourne 29
29 9 a.m. left Williamstown
30 9.30 a.m. rounded Wilson's Promontory 30·20 55 39.03 S 146.42 E 145 NE by N to NW
July 1 5 p.m. rounded Cape Howe 30·00 59 37.50 S 149.31 E 143 10 NE
2 ... ... ... 30·05 59 35.35 S 150.30 E 142 8 NNE to NW by N
3 10 a.m. arrived Sydney 7 113 NW by W to WSW 3
  July 3rd to 18th at Sydney
18 5 p.m. left Sydney 5 59·5 66 63·5
19 7 a.m. arrived Newcastle 58 70 60 4 65 West
20 7.30 a.m. left Newcastle 32.43 S 152.19 E 25 NW 3
21 ... ... ... 30·02 64 30.25 S 153.12 E 150 WNW to WSW 2 to 5
22 ... ... ... 29·95 64 29.08 S 153.39 E 79 Variable
23 2.15 p.m. rounded Cape Moreton. 10 p.m. arrived Brisbane 27.26 S 153.35 E 133 NNW to W 4 to 6
24 ... ... ... 62 18
  24th to 28th at Brisbane. 28th, 1.30 p.m. left Brisbane 455
29 6 a.m. off Indian Head 65 64 71·5 64·5 24.23 S 153.24 E 20 184 SE to ESE 5
30 7.15 a.m. anchored at Sea View. 3 p.m. proceeded. 9 p.m. arrived Rockhampton 66 61 72 64 12 138
31 ... ... ... 65 63 73 64·5 46
  July 31st to Aug. 4th at Rockhampton
Aug. 4 10 p.m. left Rockhampton 66 65 72·5 64
5 2 a.m. anchored Johnson Point. 8 a.m. proceeded. 10 a.m. cleared river 66 58 63 60 43
6 6 p.m. anchored off Glo'ster Island 30·22 67 63 70 64·5 20.42 S 149.05 E 214 SE to SSE 5
7 9 a.m. weighed. 2 p.m. arrived Bowen 67·5 64 71 66 67 SSE 4 to 5
8 6 a.m. left Bowen. Anchored in Cleveland Bay 30·25 68 64 70 66 19.30 S 147.41 E 60 SSE 4
9 2 p.m. left Townsville. 6 p.m. anchored near Palm Islands 68·5 65 72 67 64 SE
10 10 a.m. weighed anchor. 4 p.m. anchored off Dungeness. Hinchinbrook Channel 30·17 69 69 70 70 18.42 S 146.30 E 42 SE 4
11 At Dungeness. Rain 30·15 69·5 70 72 70 18.30 S 146.20 E 22 SE 3
12 10 a.m. left Dungeness. Noon, anchored Cardwell. 3 p.m. proceeded. 7, reached Mourilyan 70 70 72 70 18.14 S 146.05 E 24 Calm
13 8 p.m. left Mourilyan 71 71 75 72 17.35 S 146.08 E 41 Calm
14 ... ... ... 30·07 72·5 72 76 72·5 16.37 S 145.47 E 4 67 Variable
15 8 a.m. arrived Cooktown 73 72·5 75 73·5 15.28 S 145.17 E 3 74 Variable
16 At Cooktown 73 72 77 74
17 8 a.m. left Cooktown. 4.30 p.m. anchored under lee of Howick Islands 72·5 74 77 74 14.52 S 145.30 E 4 38 SE 4
18 6 a.m. weighed. 7 p.m. anchored near Cape Sidmouth lightship 30·12 72 74 76 73·5 14.07 S 144.17 E 97 SE 4 to 5
19 10 a.m. weighed. 8.30 p.m. anchored under Piper Islands 30·10 72·5 74·5 77 75 13.21 S 143.40 E 75 SE 5456
20 6 a.m. weighed. 6 p.m. moored in Albany Pass 30·06 72·5 76 77·5 76 11.31 S 142.55 E 130 ESE 5
21 In Albany Pass. Strong tides 30·05 75 76 77 76·5 10.41 S 142.35 E 53 SE 5
22 10 a.m. weighed. 4 p.m. arrived Thursday Island 30·02 75 76·5 77·5 77 10.33 S 142.25 E 16 SE 5
23 ... ... ... 30·05 75 77 78 77·5 7 17 SE 5
24 Steamed to Goode Island and back 75·5 77 79 77·5 8 SE 5
25 6 a.m. left Thursday Island. 6 p.m. anchored off York Island 29·95 75·5 77 79 79·5 10.13 S 142.41 E 13 24 SE 5
26 6 a.m. weighed. 11 a.m. anchored at Darnley Island 29·98 76·5 78·5 80 79·5 9.36 S 143.44 E 83 SE 5
27 8 a.m. left Darnley Island. 7 p.m. anchored under King Point, Howe Island 29·98 77 78·5 81 79 9.50 S 143.09 E 40 SE by E 5
28 Dropped down to Thursday Island under jib 76 78 80 78 74 SE by E 5 to 6
  Aug. 28 to Sept. 1st at Thursday Island
Sept. 1 6 p.m. left Thursday Island 75·5 76·5 79 77
2 ... ... ... 30·05 77·5 77 79 77·5 10.36 S 139.46 E 150 ESE 4
3 ... ... ... 30·00 77·5 77·5 80 78 10.40 S 136.11 E 215 SSE 3 to 5
4 ... ... ... 29·90 77·5 78 80 78 10.43 S 134.19 E 112 SE by E to E 1 to 4
5 6 a.m. made land. 7 p.m. passed through Clarence Strait 30·00 78 78 80·5 79·5 11.27 S 131.39 E 181 Calm
6 2 a.m. hove to. 7.30 a.m. anchored Palmerston, Port Darwin 30·05 81 79 82 80 92 Calm



Date Remarks Baro-
Temperature (Fahr.) Latitude Longitude Distance Wind
Water Air Steam Sail
Noon 6
1887     ° ° ° ° ° ´ ° ´      
Sept. 7 2 a.m. left Port Darwin 30·02 79 81·5 83 82 12.27 S 129.46 E 72 Calm
8 ... ... ... 30·07 78·5 81 81 80·5 12.56 S 126.30 E 200 Calm
9 ... ... ... 30·06 79 78·5 80 79 13.07 S 124.31 E 68 54 E 1 to SE 3
10 ... ... ... 29·95 79 79 80·5 79·5 13.17 S 121.03 E 208 S to SE 1 to 2
11 ... ... ... 29·98 79 78 80 79 13.39 S 118.53 E 51 76 SSE 1 to 3
12 ... ... ... 30·05 79 78 80 79 14.11 S 116.47 E 128 SSE to SE 2 to 3
13 ... ... ... 30·07 79 77·5 79 78 15.17 S 114.28 E 150 SSE to ESE 1 to 3
14 Lady Brassey died 11 a.m., committed to the deep at sunset, lat. 15.50 S, long. 110.38 E 77 76·5 76 75·5 15.45 S 111.39 E 168 S by E to SE 2 to 4
15 ... ... ... 30·05 76 74·5 74 74 16.14 S 107.38 E 242 SSE 4 to 5
16 ... ... ... 30·10 74 74 73·5 73·5 16.40 S 104.15 E 198 SE by S 3 to 4
17 ... ... ... 30·10 73·5 73 73 73 16.58 S 100.36 E 208 SE 3 to 5
18 ... ... ... 30·12 73 72 72·5 72 17.16 S 96.45 E 222 SE 3 to 5
19 ... ... ... 30·15 72·5 71 71 71 17.24 S 91.53 E 273 SE by S 5 to 6
20 ... ... ... 30·11 72·5 72 72 71·5 18.17 S 88.02 E 226 SE 6 to 3
21 ... ... ... 30·14 73 71·5 72 71·5 18.28 S 84.57 E 177 SE 2 to 4
22 ... ... ... 30·12 72·5 72 72 71·5 18.37 S 80.19 E 276 SE 4 to 6
23 ... ... ... 30·24 72 71·5 72 71·5 19.21 S 76.45 E 207 SE to E 5 to 3
24 ... ... ... 30·22 72·5 71 72 71·5 19.21 S 72.45 E 227 SE 4
25 ... ... ... 30·17 73 71 72 72 19.23 S 69.07 E 206 SE 4
26 4 p.m. made Rodriguez 30·15 74 72 72·5 72 19.18 S 64.52 E 241 SE to SE by S 4 to 6
27 ... ... ... 30·22 73 72·5 73 72·5 19.38 S 61.11 E 210 SE by S to E by S 6 to 3
28 4 p.m. made Round Island 30·22 73·5 73 74·5 74 19.53 S 58.45 E 133 E to E by N 3 to 2
29 12.30 a.m. anchored off Port Louis 73·5 73·5 75 74 71 8 Calm
30 At Mauritius 73 74 75 74
Oct. 1 1 p.m. left Port Louis 73 73·5 74 73·5
2 In sight of Bourbon all day 30·22 72 74 76 74·5 22.00 S 55.39 E 155 SE by E to E by N 5 to 2
3 Noon, Bourbon still visible 30·30 72 70 72·5 72 22.28 S 54.14 E 83 SE 1 variable
4 ... ... ... 30·40 72 70·5 72 71 24.22 S 49.58 E 266 SSE to SE by E 5 to 7
5 ... ... ... 30·40 71·5 69·5 71 70·5 27.02 S 45.39 E 282 SE to E 5 to 7
6 ... ... ... 30·28 67·5 69·5 72 71 28.49 S 41.27 E 247 ESE to E 6 to 4
7 ... ... ... 30·20 78·5 70·5 71 70 29.41 S 38.39 E 138 19 E by N 2 to 1
8 Brisk gale. Midnight, wind fell light 29·96 69·5 69·5 71 70 30.12 S 34.18 E 96 131 E 2 to NNE 8
9 Hard gale from SW. Nasty sea. Midnight, gale moderated 29·75 71 71 72·5 72 31.44 S 31.17 E 183 NE by E 8 to SW458
10 5 a.m. made land at Gordon Bay 30·10 71 64 68 66 32.17 S 29.13 E 24 88 SW by S 9 to E 1
11 Beating to windward under steam and sail. 10 p.m. made Cape Recife light 29·90 63 65 67 63 33.57 S 26.39 E 33 120 E by N 9 W by S 7
12 2.30 a.m. anchored Algoa Bay 30·36 62 63 65 64 56
13 6 a.m. left Algoa Bay 30·40 62 63 64·5 63·5 34.14 S 25.20 E 11 24 SE by E 7
14 2 p.m. rounded Cape Agulhas. 10.30 p.m. made Cape of Good Hope light 30·10 64 64 64 64 35.50 S 20.18 E 260 SE by E 6 to 7
15 8 a.m. anchored Table Bay 56 63 64 65 19 134 SSE 7

N.B.—On this passage the 'Sunbeam' made the fastest long run she has ever made. In the fortnight Sept. 13 to 27 she did 3,073 knots.


Date Remarks Baro-
Temperature (Fahr.) Latitude Longitude Distance Wind
Water Air Steam Sail
Noon 6
1887     ° ° ° ° ° ´ ° ´      
Oct. 24 10.30 a.m. weighed and proceeded to sea. Noon, returned 30·15 55 55 56·5 56 5 W by N 7
25 7 p.m. left Cape Town. Midnight, off Robben Island under steam. 5 p.m. ceased steaming 30·40 60 56·5 58 57·5 33.10 S 17.12 E 72 3 Calm
26 ... ... ... 30·20 61 62 63·5 63 30.49 S 13.34 E 40 193 S by N to S 2 to 7
27 ... ... ... 30·21 60·5 59 60·5 60 27.55 S 10.22 E 243 6 to 8
28 ... ... ... 30·23 61·5 61 61·5 61 25.38 S 7.08 E 223 S to S by E 6
29 'Roslin Castle' passed 'Sunbeam,' homeward bound 30·24 63·5 60·5 63 62·5 24.09 S 3.39 E 209 SE to SSE 5
30 'Norham Castle' passed 'Sunbeam,' outward bound 30·25 63·5 62 64·5 63·5 22.06 S 2.02 E 152 SE 4 to SE by S 2
31 ... ... ... 30·23 64·5 64 66 64·5 19.46 S 0.03 W 182 SE 5 to 2
Nov. 1 ... ... ... 30·20 65·5 65 66 65 17.48 S 1.32 W 146 SE 3 to 2
2 ... ... ... 30·17 67·5 65 66·5 66 16.18 S 3.25 W 140 SE by S to SE by E 2 to 3459
3 3 a.m. made St. Helena. 9 a.m. anchored off James Town. 10.30 p.m. left St. Helena 30·14 68 66 69 66·5 140 S by E 4 to 2
4 1 a.m. ceased steaming 30·13 69 68 69 69 14.26 S 7.03 W 17 97 ESE 5 to 3
5 ... ... ... 30·13 71 70 71 70·5 12.11 S 9.15 W 186 SE 3 to 4
6 ... ... ... 30·17 73 73 74·5 74 9.59 S 11.06 W 171 SE 4 to 2
7 4 p.m. made Ascension. 10 p.m. hove to 30·02 74·5 73·5 75 75·5 8.33 S 13.33 W 169 SE to SSE 2 to
8 7 a.m. anchored Clarence Bay 30·04 76·5 76·5 78 77 68 SE 3
9 5 p.m. left Ascension 30·00 77 76·5 65[7] 77 4.44 S 14.53 W 200 SE 6 to 5
10 1 a.m. passed H.M.S. 'Wye' 30·00 77 77 78 77·5
11 ... ... ... 30·00 78 78 79·5 79·5 .58 S 14.30 W 227 SE to SSE 6 to 4
12 ... ... ... 30·00 80·5 79 80 79·5 2.16 N 13.54 W 196 SE by E 3 to 4
13 11 p.m. commenced steaming 30·00 82·5 81 81 82 5.21 N 13.47 W 185 SE by S 3 to 2
14 3 p.m. made hills about Sierra Leone. 9 p.m. anchored at Free Town 30·00 81·5 80·5 81·5 82 7.57 N 14.00 W 104 52 ESE 2. Calm
15 6 p.m. left Sierra Leone 30·00 82 81 82·5 81·5 56 Calm
16 ... ... ... 30·00 83 82·5 83·5 83 9.35 N 14.57 W 120 NNE 1
17 8 a.m. heavy rain-squall with wind. 12.45 p.m. ceased steaming 30·04 81·5 81 82 81·5 11.04 N 17.06 W[8] 182 NNE 1 to 8
18 ... ... ... 30·02 80 81 81·5 80·5 12.30 N 20.34 W 205 NE by N 6 to 7
19 Noon, arrived Porto Praya. 6 p.m. proceeded 30·05 78·5 79 80 79 14.55 N 23.25 W 240 NE by N 6 to 7
20 1 a.m. to 2.30 a.m. under steam. Passed to leeward of St. Vincent, &c. 30·05 78 77·5 78·5 78 16.25 N 24.55 W 15 130 NE by E 6
21 Sighted two ships and a barque bound south 30·10 78 77 77 76 19.14 N[8]
19.01 N
25.42 W 15 160 E by N 6 to 7
22 Passed numerous sailing ships 30·12 77 74·5 74 73·5 22.37 N[8]
22.20 N
25.54 W 203 E ½ N 7 to 5
23 6 a.m. commenced steaming. 10 a.m. stopped to repair boiler tubes. Noon, proceeded 30·05 76·5 73 74 73 24.05 N 27.04 W 23 100 NE 4 to 1
24 7 a.m. ceased steaming. Heavy swell from NNE 30·05 75 69·5 70·5 70 26.13 N[8]
25.58 N
28.03 W 81 34 NNE to NE
25 ... ... ... 30·20 73 70 71·5 70 27.30 N 30.50 W 175 N by E to NE by N 6
26 ... ... ... 30·29 72 68·5 69 67·5 29.40 N 32.14 W 151 NE 3 to 5
27 Finally lost NE trade 30·25 72 68 69 68 30.55 N 31.58 W 85 Variable
28 ... ... ... 30·13 70 66·5 67·5 65·5 32.38 N 31.39 W 112 WNW 4 to E 2
29 Moderate gale 30·15 68 63 64 62·5 34.54 N 31.20 W 130 E 3 to E by S 7460
30 Gale increasing. Split mainsail, mizen foresail, and jib 30·33 67 61·5 62·5 62 36.43 N 30.40 W 112 ESE 8 to 9
Dec. 1 Gale moderating towards night 30·17 64·5 62·5 63·5 63 37.35 N[8] 30.09 W[8] 57 SE 8 to 9
2 Daybreak, made Fayal. Worked up under steam and sail to Pico 30·10 64·5 62·5 65 63 38.42 N 28.48 W 92 S by E 8 to 9
3 7 a.m. anchored Horta Bay. 4.30 p.m. weighed 30·10 64·5 62 63·5 62·5 37 S 3 to 4
4 2 a.m. wind flew suddenly to NNE. 10 a.m. blowing a gale. Bore up for Terceira. Hove to 30·03 64 60·5 60·5 59·5 8 99 NE 5 to 10
5 10 a.m. commenced steaming. 10 p.m. ceased, boiler having finally given out 30·30 64 60 61 60 38.48 N 27.22 W 11 61 Calm. E 3
6 ... ... ... 30·40 63 60 61 61 39.09 N 25.15 W 50 55 NE to ENE 3
7 ... ... ... 30·44 63 59 59·5 60 40.59 N 23.30 W 135 E to S 3
8 ... ... ... 30·26 63·5 60 60 60 42.43 N 20.00 W 190 SW to W 5 to 6
9 ... ... ... 30·10 58 58·5 60 58 45.08 N[8]
44.53 N
16.04 W 217 W by S 7 to 8
10 3.30 a.m. wind fell suddenly. No observations 30·10 54 54·5 54 53 46.11 N 13.24 W 134 W by S 8 to NE
11 Weather thick with rain. No observations 55 53 47.09 N[8] 11.10 W[8] 109 SE 2 to 6
12 8 p.m. made Bishop and St. Agnes lights. Position 35 miles to N of reckoning 49.17 N[8] 7.18 W[8] 201 S by E 6 to SSW 2
13 Weather thick. 4 p.m. made stand near St. Catherine's. 8 p.m. anchored close to the Nab 50.13 N 2.17 W[8] 230 SSW 7 to 8
14 Towed into Portsmouth Harbour 64



Portsmouth to Bombay3,040miles4,046miles.
Bombay to Macassar4,585"2,509"
Macassar to Adelaide601"3,256"
Adelaide to Port Darwin976"3,285"
Port Darwin to Cape of Good Hope1,047"5,622"
Cape of Good Hope to Portsmouth831"6,668"

Total distance under steam and sail, 36,466 miles.


Reprinted from the ‘Times’ of December 15, 1887.

The 'Sunbeam' reached Portsmouth Harbour on Wednesday after her long voyage of 36,000 nautical miles among the British Possessions in all parts of the world. We are enabled to give the following short account of this very interesting cruise.

For certain duties of the navy, such as protection of the revenue, supervision of fisheries, the police of the Pacific, instruction in pilotage, small vessels are required which will be thoroughly seaworthy, capable under sail of taking full advantage of the winds, and in calms making fair speed under steam with a low consumption of fuel. It is believed that such a type is represented in the 'Sunbeam,' and that her performances during an extended cruise recently completed may be of interest in a naval point of view.

The principal dimensions of the hull and spars of the 'Sunbeam' are as follows:—Length between perpendiculars, 137 ft.; beam, 27 ft. 6 in.; depth of hold, 13 ft. 9 in.; displacement in tons, 576; sail area in square yards, 9,200.

In fourteen years of active cruising in all parts of the world the seaworthiness of the 'Sunbeam' has been thoroughly tested. Neither when lying to nor scudding has she ever shipped a green sea. She can be worked with a complement of eighteen seamen and three stokers. She can carry an armament of machine and quick-firing guns.

The consumption of fuel may be taken at three tons in twenty-four hours for a speed of 7¾ knots; four tons for eight knots; and seven tons for nine knots. The measured-mile speed was 10·27 knots. Seventy tons of coal can be carried.462

Under sail alone in the most favourable circumstances 13 knots is an extreme speed. Three hundred knots have been made good on a few occasions, with some contributions to the day's run from current. On a passage the average distance made good is 1,000 miles a week, of which one-third is under steam.

The recent cruise of the 'Sunbeam' included India, the Eastern Archipelago, and Australia. The outward voyage was by the Suez Canal and the return voyage by the Cape. On leaving Portsmouth calls were made at Cowes and Southampton, the departure being finally taken from Plymouth on the 19th of November. Gibraltar was reached on the 26th of November, Algiers on the 1st of December, Malta 5th, Port Said 10th, Assab Bay 19th, Aden 21st of December, and Bombay 3rd of January. From England fine weather was experienced as far as Algiers. Thence to Port Said the winds were strong from the westward, with an interval of calm lasting nearly two days. In the northern portion of the Red Sea fresh northerly winds prevailed. On leaving Aden the north-east monsoon blew with such force that it was decided to make a stretch to the eastward under sail. As the distance from the Arabian coast increased the monsoon gradually abated, and a course was laid under steam direct to Bombay. On nearing the coast of India the monsoon became more northerly, and the 'Sunbeam' fetched Bombay under sail. Having given a general description of the weather, the records of the log-book may be summarised as follows:—Distance under sail, 4,046 knots; distance under steam, 2,830 knots; the average speed in each case being within a fraction of seven knots.

On the first section of the voyage the average speed of 1,000 miles a week was maintained with remarkable uniformity. Bombay was reached on the precise day which had been estimated before leaving England.

After a few days at Bombay the 'Sunbeam' proceeded to Kurrachee, and remained in its salubrious climate from the 10th of January to the 7th of February. Lord Brassey and his family in the interval made an extended journey in North-Western India. The return passage from Kurrachee to Bombay, favoured by a brisk north-east monsoon, was made entirely under sail in less than forty-eight hours, the distance covered on the 9th of February being 268 miles. The Queen's Jubilee was celebrated during the second visit of the 'Sunbeam' to Bombay.

The voyage was resumed on the 22nd of February. Touching at Jinjeera and Goa, Colombo was reached on the 5th of March. The entire distance from Kurrachee to Cape Comorin, including both entering and leaving port, had been accomplished under sail. The monsoon was not felt on the Malabar coast. From Bombay to Cape Comorin the passage was made with the daily sea breezes, blowing fresh in the afternoon, followed by calm prolonged through the night and the first part of the day. Calling at Trincomalee en route, the 'Sunbeam' next proceeded to Burmah. March is a busy season in the rice trade, and a noble fleet of sailing ships was assembled at Rangoon.463

After leaving Rangoon the 'Sunbeam' proceeded to Borneo, touching at Moulmein and Singapore. The Sarawak river was reached on the 3rd of April. Following the northern and eastern coast of Borneo, Labuan, Brunei, Kudat Bay, Sandakan, and Darvel Bay were successively visited. Macassar was reached on the 19th of April. In the section of the voyage extending from Bombay to Kurrachee, and thence by the route which has been described, the total distances covered were 4,695 knots under steam at an average speed of 8·3 knots, and 2,509 knots under sail at an average speed of 5·1 knots.

The 'Sunbeam' left Macassar on the evening of the 20th of April. The Indian Ocean was entered from the Allas Straits, which divides the islands of Lombok and Sumbawa, on the 24th. A heavy swell was encountered from the east, caused, as it was afterwards learned, by a cyclone which did great damage to the fleet engaged in the pearl-fishery on the north-west coast of Australia. The South-east Trades were picked up on the 25th, and blew steadily until the 3rd of May. On the 5th of May a gale, with furious squalls, was experienced from the south-west. It was followed by a calm, and afterwards by westerly winds. Albany was reached on the 8th of May. The 'Sunbeam' again put to sea on the 17th of May. A week was occupied on the passage to Adelaide. In the great Australian Bight north-east winds were encountered, gradually shifting to the west, and blowing a gale during the last two days before reaching port. On the day before the arrival at Adelaide the distance of 265 knots was made good; sail having been much reduced for several hours to avoid running down on Kangaroo Island in thick weather at night. Between Macassar and Adelaide a distance of 3,256 knots was covered under sail at an average speed of 6·3 knots. The distance under steam was 601 knots and the average speed seven knots.

From Adelaide the 'Sunbeam' made a smart run to Melbourne, encountering a heavy gale with furious squalls off Cape Otway. After a long stay at Melbourne the voyage was resumed to Sydney, Newcastle, and Brisbane.

On leaving Brisbane the passage was taken inside the Great Barrier Reef without the assistance of a pilot. Fourteen hundred miles of this difficult navigation were traversed under sail. The 'Sunbeam' touched at all the ports of Northern Queensland, and between Cooktown and the Albany Pass anchored in the three intervening nights under the lee of the coral reefs. A somewhat prolonged stay at Thursday Island was broken by a visit to Darnley Island and other anchorages in the Torres Straits. Port Darwin was reached on the 8th of September. Between Adelaide and Port Darwin the distance under sail was 3,311 knots, and the average speed 7·2 knots. The distance under steam was 966 knots, and the average speed 6·5 knots. On arrival at Port Darwin the 'Sunbeam' had completed successfully the circumnavigation of the Australian continent. Unhappily the cruise, so auspiciously commenced, ended with that painful event which has cast a dark shadow over all its other memories.464

From Port Darwin to the Cape of Good Hope, and thence to Sierra Leone, the voyage lay for the most part within the zone of the South-east Trades. Rodriguez Island was sighted on the 26th of September, and Mauritius was reached two days later. The passage from Port Louis to Algoa Bay occupied 11 days. To the southward of the Trades, off the coast of Natal, a short but severe gale from the south-west was encountered. The gale was followed by a fresh breeze from the east, which carried the 'Sunbeam' rapidly to the westward from off Gordon Bay, her landfall on the coast of Africa. A day was spent at Port Elizabeth, and two days of rapid sailing before an easterly wind brought the yacht into Table Bay on the morning of the 15th of October, just in time to gain the anchorage before one of the hard gales from the south-east set in which are not infrequently experienced at the Cape. The construction of a noble breakwater has given complete security to the anchorage off Cape Town.

Between Port Darwin and the Cape the distance covered was 1,047 knots under steam and 5,622 knots under sail; the average speed under steam and sail was exactly eight knots. In the fortnight from September 13 to 27, 3,073 knots, giving an average speed of nine knots, were covered under sail alone, with winds of moderate strength. Balloon canvas was freely used.

The 'Sunbeam' left Cape Town on the 24th of October. She touched at St. Helena on the 3rd of November, Ascension on the 7th, and Sierra Leone on the 14th. In this section of the voyage the distance under canvas was 3,327 knots, the average speed 7·7 knots; and the distance under steam 289 knots, with an average speed of seven knots. The South-east Trades were light, and balloon canvas again proved extremely serviceable.

The 'Sunbeam' left Sierra Leone at sunset on the 15th of November, under steam. The North-east Trades were picked up in latitude 11 deg. N. A call of a few hours was made at Porto Praya on the 19th of November. On the following day the northern islands of the Cape Verde group were sighted. During the 21st and 22nd of November a great number of sailing ships were passed, outward bound. The Trades were interrupted by a calm on the 24th of November and stopped finally on the 27th. On the following day, without warning from the barometer, a strong gale commenced from the east, and lasted without intermission for four days. Under low canvas and close hauled the 'Sunbeam' gallantly struggled forward, making 130 knots on the 29th of November, and on the three following days 112, 57, and 92 knots respectively. While hove-to in this gale the canvas was severely punished. All the lower sails were more or less damaged, and sail was reduced to storm trysails. Two large barques were passed lying-to under lower main topsails and mizzen storm staysails. At dawn on the 2nd of December Fayal was sighted.

Shelter was obtained for 24 hours under the lee of the island of Pico, and on the following day the 'Sunbeam' anchored off Horta, the port of Fayal. The passage from Sierra Leone to Fayal had been accomplished,465 with adverse winds during a considerable part of the voyage, in 16½ days, 2,005 knots being covered under sail at an average speed of 6·3 knots, and 460 miles under steam at an average speed of six knots. Having taken in water and provisions, the voyage was resumed on the evening of the 3rd of December, with a favourable wind from the south-south-east. At midnight the wind shifted suddenly to the north-east, and on the following morning the 'Sunbeam' bore up before a severe gale for shelter under the lee of Terceira.

On the 5th of December the gale subsided to a calm, and the voyage homewards was commenced under steam. In a few hours the engines broke down, and sail was made to a light breeze from the north-east. In the succeeding days favourable winds were experienced from the westward. On the 11th the wind shifted to the south-east, accompanied by drizzling rain and fog, rendering observations impossible, which continued until the Scilly Island lights were sighted in a fortunate lifting of the haze on the evening of the 12th. The run from the Scilly Islands to Spithead was made at the rate of 11½ knots before a south-westerly gale. The total distance from Fayal, including the call at Terceira, was 1,440 miles, of which 60 only were under steam. The average speed was seven knots. The 'Sunbeam' entered Portsmouth Harbour at noon on the 14th of December. The total distance covered during the voyage was 36,709 nautical miles, 25,800 under sail and 10,909 under steam. The runs under sail only included 39 days over 200 knots, 15 days over 240, seven days over 260, three days over 270. The best day was 282 knots. The total consumption of coal was 330 tons. Though the quality taken in abroad was in many instances inferior, an average distance of 33 knots was steamed for every ton of coals consumed.

When the 'Sunbeam' reached the Cape it was found that the tubes of the boiler had been seriously injured by the great varieties of fuel burnt during the voyage. The pressure of steam was considerably reduced, with a corresponding loss of speed. On leaving Terceira the boiler broke down completely, and for the remainder of the voyage the winds were the only resource.

The crew, consisting of 24 men in various ratings, have behaved in a highly creditable manner. The offences when in port have been few, and at sea every duty has been carried out in a manner worthy of British seamen. Three men joined at King George's Sound. They had been sentenced to a short term of imprisonment for insubordination on board a yacht returning from a cruise in Australian waters. To oblige the Government Resident, Lord Brassey consented to receive these men on board on trial. Better men it would not have been possible to obtain had they been recruited through the usual agencies.





Adelaide, May 27th, 1887.

The annual meeting of the South Australian Branch of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia was held at the Society's rooms, Waymouth Street, on Friday afternoon, May 27th. Sir Samuel Davenport (Vice-President) occupied the chair.

The ordinary business of the meeting having been concluded, and speeches of welcome having been delivered by the Chairman, Lord Brassey said: 'You have spoken of the voyages that have been taken on the "Sunbeam" as adventures not unworthy of those old Northmen in whose distant fame England and Australia equally share. I cannot take to myself the credit of being an adventurer in the same sense in which our northern forefathers were adventurers. I will not speak of the morality of their proceedings, but simply of the feats of navigation in which they engaged. Those northern forefathers of ours were not provided with all the information which geographers and explorers have given to the navigators of modern days. Consider for a moment the hazards and the difficulties encountered by Captain Cook. Going about as I do with all the facilities afforded by the most recent discoveries in science, and still finding the art of navigation not made so very easy, I confess that when I look back to a great man like Captain Cook, who entered these seas with no information, and with no other resource but his general seamanship and knowledge of navigation, my admiration of his achievements grows continually stronger. I particularly rejoice that so excellent a society as this has been established in Adelaide. I understand it is a society collateral with others which exist in the other colonies of Australia. It seems to me that you are doing a most valuable work. Exploration must precede settlement. It is a necessary process, by which alone you can arrive at the proper settle467ment and development of this country. A previous speaker expressed deep satisfaction that the control of this fifth continent had devolved on the Anglo-Saxon race. In coming to these colonies I touched at two seaports, which, by the contrast they present, brought forcibly to my mind the advantage of a liberal policy in dealing with commerce. The two ports to which I refer are Singapore and Macassar. Singapore dates from some fifty or sixty years ago at the most, but it has grown to a magnificent emporium of trade; and how has it reached that position? By declaring on the very first day that the protecting flag of England was hoisted that equal privileges should be given to men of commerce to whatever nationality they might belong. When we turn to Macassar—a place which might be not unfairly compared in regard to facilities of position with Singapore—we find the Dutch determined to close it to the enterprise of every foreign nationality. The result of this selfish spirit is that Macassar presents all the indications of languor and decay, while Singapore presents all the indications of prosperity and wealth. Before I sit down, may I refer to some portion of the report, in which reference was made to recent spheres of exploration in which the society is interested? You refer to the exploration of New Guinea. There are some delicate questions connected with New Guinea, on which I certainly shall not now touch, but I may say that what I have seen of the world has tended to impress on my mind most deeply the conviction that latitude does fix in a very decisive manner a limitation upon the sphere of the Anglo-Saxon race for direct physical labour. I feel convinced that unless you have temperate weather, such as we are now enjoying in Adelaide, to make up for the hot season, the Anglo-Saxon race cannot undertake outdoor labour. You may direct and administer it; you may be able to go through figures in the office; but, to go out into the field to dig and delve is impossible. Despite this, however, the tropical countries may prove of inestimable benefit. Although they may not be suitable for the employment of the Anglo-Saxons as field labourers, it does not follow that they are not to be of great benefit—even a direct benefit—to our own race in regard to the employment of labour. If we can succeed in developing these tropical regions by employing the labour of the tropical races, the increasing prosperity will serve to extend the markets for the products of Anglo-Saxon labour in countries adapted to our race. A visit to Australia must be a matter of deep interest to every patriotic Englishman. In the old country we are becoming more and more sensible that it is the highest statesmanship to keep together every limb of the British Empire. There is an increasing affection to the colonies in England, and an increasing pride in their advancement. National sentiment and enlightened self-interest will bind and keep us together, so that not one limb of the great British Empire shall be severed. I have said more than strictly belongs to the motion, but I was prompted to do so by my friend in the chair. I move a vote of thanks to the Chairman.'468


Adelaide, June 1st, 1887.

The hall of the Chamber of Commerce was crowded on Wednesday afternoon, it having been announced that Lord Brassey would deliver an address. The audience included most of the prominent merchants of the city, and others interested in commerce, and Dr. Kennion, the Anglican Bishop of Adelaide. Mr. A.W. Meeks presided, and said that a special meeting of the Chamber had been called to hear Lord Brassey give an address on mercantile affairs. The Committee knew the great interest he (Lord Brassey) had taken in all matters referring to maritime and mercantile affairs, and the voyages made in the 'Sunbeam' had made Lady Brassey well known. Lord Brassey's father was well known in connection with great public works.

Lord Brassey said: 'Your Chairman did not give me any information as to the kind of subject which I should address you on, but I presumed that the Chamber of Commerce would be most interested in the labour question.

'The policy to be pursued by the Government of this colony in relation to the admission of Chinese or coolie labour into the Northern Territory is, I understand, among the pressing subjects of the hour. Approaching the subject without prejudice or bias, it does not seem difficult to determine the principles by which the action of the State should be guided. If we have faith in the superior qualities of our own people we shall do well, even at the cost of considerable delay in material development, to reserve for our own race those parts of the country in which they can succeed, in which they can not only labour, but preserve and perpetuate from generation to generation, the qualities which have made them great. While the policy seems clear in relation to regions adapted to the physical qualities of our own race, it seems not less clear for the regions beyond. To refuse the aid of the tropical populations for opening up the resources of countries where the Anglo-Saxon race cannot perform manual labour, and still less establish a permanent settlement, is not to advance but seriously to injure the true interests of this colony. By opening up portions of your Northern Territory with imported labour, a new outlet will be afforded for the investment of your capital, and a new market created under your own control for the sale of your manufactures.

'I pass to another subject which must be dealt with, not by legislation, but by mutual good feeling and by common sense. Wherever business is carried on upon a large scale, difficulties must in the nature of things be anticipated in the relations between labour and capital. Each of these elements in the operations of industry may be helpless without the other, but when we pass from the stage of production to the appropriation of profits the conflict of interests is inevitable. Strengthened by the experi469ence in the old country, I would earnestly recommend for all your larger trades voluntary courts of arbitration and conciliation. If we go back to that dark time in England which followed the close of the long struggle with Napoleon, the hostility of classes was seen in all employments, and in none was it more conspicuous than in the collieries. A happy change has passed over the spirit of the scene. Nowhere has the method of arbitration been more successful than in Durham and Northumberland. A scale of wages for miners has been agreed upon, varying with the price of coal, and arbitrators have been found to apply the scale to the conditions of the time, in whose justice employers and employed have implicit confidence. Among these valuable men Mr. David Dale is an eminent example. He and other men of his high stamp and quality—men such as Rupert Kettle, Mundella, and Frederic Harrison—occupy a truly noble position in relation to labour questions. They have won the confidence of the masses, not by truckling to prejudices, not by disavowing the sound and well-tried rules of political economy, but by listening and by explaining with unwearied patience, by showing a sincere sympathy with the working classes, and by taking a deep interest in their welfare. The mention of these distinguished names leads me to the adjustment of difficulties by Courts of Conciliation. They may be described as committees consisting of equal numbers of employers and workmen, appointed to meet at frequent intervals, and to discuss in a friendly open way, and on terms of perfect equality, all the questions in which there is a possibility of conflict. The practicability of the plan has been proved by experience. It is impossible to exaggerate its good effects. By frequent and friendly meetings knowledge is acquired on both sides which could be gained in no other way, and suspicion is changed to sympathy. I hope that no bad influences of false pride on one side, or of unmerited distrust on the other, will deter the employers and the employed of South Australia from rapidly bringing into operation the excellent method of averting disputes, which Courts of Conciliation both in England and on the Continent of Europe have never failed to provide.

'Free trade and Protection are topics which wide-spread depression has thrust into prominence of late. The present Government in England, in deference to the demands of Protectionists, appointed a Royal Commission. Its members were the representatives of conflicting views, and after an exhaustive inquiry they separated without changing the opinions with which they entered upon their labours. We may draw the inference that the subject is not quite so simple as the most earnest partisans in the controversy would wish us to believe. For the United Kingdom I am a convinced Freetrader. I admit that the old country, where half the population subsists on imported food, which must be paid for in exported goods, is not on all fours with a colony capable of producing in abundance all the necessaries of life for a population infinitely more numerous than at present exists within its borders. But while the conditions are different the fact remains that under a protective system customers are precluded470 from buying in the cheapest market, agriculture is heavily charged for the benefit of a less important interest, and labour artificially diverted from those spheres of industry in which it might be employed to the greatest advantage. Certain it is that cycles of commercial depression would not be averted, but rather prolonged and aggravated, by a policy of protection. Impressed with the weight of evidence on this point, the recent Royal Commission of Trade declined to recommend Protection as a panacea for commercial depression in the United Kingdom, and I hesitate to recommend it to the Chamber of Commerce in Adelaide. While, however, I would deprecate the imposition of burdensome import duties for the purposes of Protection, I fully recognise that moderate import duties are necessary as a means of raising revenue. The first duty of every Finance Minister is to obtain an income for the State by the methods which are the least irksome to the taxpayers. In new countries, not exporters of manufactured goods, import duties are universally found to be the least irksome form of taxation. If under a moderate tariff industries are established earlier than would be possible without some Protection, the incidental advantage is secured of varied employment for the people. Where all depend on the same pursuit or the same industry, an unfavourable season or a fall in price may cause a general depression. There is less risk of universal melancholy and decline when the public wealth is derived from various and independent sources. My conclusion is against import duties on a high scale, levied, as in the United States, for the purpose of exclusion. I recognise the necessity in certain circumstances for the imposition of import duties on a moderate scale for the purposes of revenue.

'I have one more remark to offer in connection with the labour question. Among the many gratifying things which I have seen in your colony, nothing has exceeded your system of education. I congratulate your people, and I honour your Government for their efforts in the cause. It may not, however, be superfluous to refer to that tendency to look disparagingly on manual labour, which is so frequent and fatal a result of the very perfection of educational work. Education may become a curse rather than a boon if it relaxes that physical energy which in all communities, and especially in a new country, is the indispensable condition of progress. It has been truly said by the poet Browning:—

The honest earnest man must stand and work,
The woman also—otherwise she drops
At once below the dignity of man,
Accepting serfdom.
I count that Heaven itself is only work
To a surer issue.

Society must take to itself the responsibility for the preference given to clerical over mechanical employments. We have not done our duty in471 giving to our skilled workmen that social recognition which is their due. But I am happy to say that in the old country we are decidedly in the way of amendment. The return of working men in greater numbers to the House of Commons has been productive of much good in a social point of view.

'In conclusion, it may not be inappropriate to the occasion to dwell for a few moments on the influences of honest trade in raising the standard of civilisation and elevating the character of men. The prosperity of commerce depends on intelligence, on industry, but above all on character. Cleverness may sometimes win a stroke. There have been financiers in the City of London whose career might have been painted in the language applied by Earl Russell to Mirabeau—"His mind raised him to the skies; his moral character chained him to the earth." I can quote no instance in which men of this stamp have achieved an enduring success. It is not the men whose craft and cunning people fear, but the men in whom they trust and whom they love who in the end succeed. It is the office of commerce to give to the world perpetual illustrations of the homely but ennobling truth that honesty is the best policy. Commerce puts before those engaged in it many temptations. The good man of business must rise superior to them all, and thus it is that in his life and work he can do so much to communicate advantages, to advance material welfare, and to raise the tone of morals. Such, and not less, is the mission of the merchant and the trader. For myself, I am proud to know that I am the son of a contractor for public works, whose good reputation was the best part of the heritage which descended to his sons.'

Melbourne, June 25th, 1887.

A complimentary dinner was tendered to Lord Brassey, K.C.B., the hon. treasurer of the Imperial Federation League, by the members of the Victorian branch of the League, at the Town Hall on Saturday evening. The banquet was laid in the council chamber, and about eighty gentlemen sat down to the tables. The chair was occupied by Mr. G.D. Carter, M.L.A., president of the Victorian branch. On his right were the guest of the evening, the Premier (Mr. Duncan Gillies), and the Postmaster-General of Queensland (Mr. M'Donald Paterson), and on his left the Mayor of Melbourne (Councillor Cain), the President of the Legislative Council (Sir James MacBain), Mr. Justice Webb, and Mr. Nicholas Fitzgerald, M.L.C. The company included a large number of other prominent citizens, many of them not being members of the League. In giving the toast of 'The Queen,' the Chairman said that they could not better have given expression to their loyalty to Her Majesty than by meeting to advocate the unity of the empire over which she reigned. The assemblage of representative citizens for such a purpose formed a most appropriate conclusion to those rejoicings in which we had so happily shared during the week of Jubilee.472

The toast was received with enthusiasm, and a verse of the National Anthem was sung.

The Chairman gave the toast of 'His Excellency the Governor.'

The toast was received with cheers.

The Chairman next proposed the toast of 'Imperial Federation.' They had no definite views at present on the subject of Imperial Federation. The point to which they had got was this, that they desired to see the empire united as one inseparable whole. We were bound together by the ties of kindred, kith, and kin, and he even dared to hope that the view expressed by Mr. James Anthony Froude when he was here would be realised, and that there would eventually be a union of the English-speaking peoples of the world for the purpose of mutual defence. On behalf of the Victorian branch of the Imperial Federation League, and of the colony generally, he offered a cordial welcome to Lord Brassey, and trusted that he would carry away with him pleasant recollections of his visit to Victoria.

Lord Brassey said: 'As the treasurer of the Imperial Federation League established in London, it affords me the greatest gratification to be your guest this evening. Our work in the old country would be of little value, unless it were approved and supported by public opinion in these great and growing colonies. Speaking on behalf of the Imperial Federation League in London, we have no cut-and-dried plans which we are anxious to put forward. We see great difficulties in arriving at any solution of the question of federation; but with their growth in population, in wealth, and in resources, we anticipate that we shall see more and more a manly resolve on the part of the colonies, not only to make provision for their own defence, but to share in the responsibility of the defence of the united empire. With your increased participation in the burdens, you must necessarily receive an increased share in determining the policy of the empire, and thus we see looming in the not far distant future the necessity for further consideration of the problem of federation. We do not desire, we should deprecate, a hasty solution. We believe that probably the wisest course will be to deal with circumstances as they arise. We wish to pave the way by timely and temperate discussion. The views of the founders of the Imperial Federation League were well put, in one of his latest speeches, by a grand statesman of the old country, Mr. W.E. Forster, the first president of the League, who said:—"The idea of the permanent unity of the realm, the duty of preserving this union, the blessings which this preservation will confer, the danger and loss and disaster which will follow from disunion, are thoughts which possess the minds of Englishmen both here and over the seas. These thoughts are expressing themselves in deeds; let this expression continue; at present it helps our cause far more effectually than any possible scheme." I am not one of those who ever doubted the loyalty of the colonies to Old England. If any Englishmen were in doubt as to the feeling of the colonies towards the mother country, the events of the past week in this noble city of473 Melbourne would dispel effectually any uncertainty. On Tuesday last we saw your militia march past like a wall, to the tune of "The Old Folks at Home." That may be a somewhat homely melody, but it conveyed a touching sentiment to the spectator from the old country. On the following day a ball was given at Government House, an entertainment the splendour of which could hardly have been exceeded in any capital in Europe. That entertainment owed its character not merely to the graceful hospitality of the host and hostess on the occasion, but to the eager desire of those who were present to seize the occasion for showing their attachment to the Queen, in whose honour and in whose name that ball was given. On the following day in your Parliament Buildings, which, by the beauty of their design and the amplitude of their proportions express your greatness in the present and anticipate your growth in the future, a noble hall was dedicated, with a generous spirit of loyalty, to the name of the Queen. On the evening of the same day we attended a concert at which thousands of your citizens were present. On four several and separate occasions the National Anthem was sung, and on each occasion with increasing fervour. On the following day 30,000 children were brought together, trained to utter the sentiments of their parents in that National Anthem which they sang so well. In journeying in some of the remoter parts of this colony, it was touching to hear "God Save the Queen" sung at every opportunity by the little children, who are thus early trained in the sentiment of loyalty. If we pass from these momentary incidents of the week to circumstances of a more permanent and perhaps more serious character, what are the conclusions which an intelligent traveller from the old country may draw, with reference to the ties which bind the colonies to the mother country? If he looks at your society and your family life, he finds the same manners, the same habits, the same ways of viewing circumstances and things. Your English tastes are shown in the houses which you build, the clothes which you wear, the food which you eat, and in the goods you buy. The national character of the Anglo-Saxon race is shown as strongly here as in the mother country in your spirited devotion to manly sports and pastimes; and when we think of the other ties that bind us—a common faith, a common literature, the same dear mother tongue—what other conclusion can be drawn by the intelligent traveller than this—that the ties which bind the colonies to the mother country are stronger than those which any legislature or statesmanship could contrive, and that they are inherent in the innermost life of the people. Gentlemen, you may call the union which binds us an empire, you may call it a federation, you may call it an offensive and defensive alliance of the closest kind—you may call it what you will—the name is of subordinate consequence while mutual sympathy and sentiment retain that binding force which, as we have seen in this Jubilee week, you are all so generously prepared to acknowledge in your relations with the old country. Perhaps I may say a few words on this occasion with reference to the mutual advantages which are afforded by our remaining474 together as members of a united empire. There was a time when the connection was less valued than it is at present by some of the eminent statesmen of the old country. Since the days of which I speak great changes have taken place. The map of Europe has been reconstructed on the principle of the recognition of nationalities. The Germans have made themselves into a nation; the Italians have made themselves into a nation. Our tight little island is small indeed in area, in comparison with the great territories of Continental Europe. It is small in area, but if we and the children descended from us—these great English-speaking nations which have overspread the world—remain united together, we are the first of the nationalities of Europe. I think there are some indications that the maintenance of the unity of the British Empire may be less difficult than might perhaps in former days have been anticipated. Science has done much to shorten distances; it has given us the electric telegraph, an improved and improving steamship, and railways. As the colonies grow in importance, it must necessarily follow that the Imperial policy will be concentrated more and more upon objects which are common to them and to the mother country. The foreign policy will be directed to the maintenance in security of the communications between the mother country and the colonies, an object of common interest to yourselves and to ourselves. Looking forward to a not very distant time, it is evident that your growth in population and power will give you the command of the neighbouring seas. Your relations with India will become closer and closer, and you will be in a position not less strong, and your interest will be as great as that of the mother country in preventing the hoisting of any flag hostile to your own upon the ports of India. All the countries of the British Empire will hold together, because it will be for their advantage. Trade follows the flag. While other branches of our foreign trade have been languishing, the trade with the colonies has remained flourishing and elastic. We lend you our capital on much easier terms than we would ask if you were under a foreign flag. We hold before you in external relations the shield of a great empire. The advantages of the present arrangement, from a colonial point of view, were happily put a short time ago in a speech by Sir John Macdonald, from which I will ask leave to quote two or three sentences. Speaking at Montreal, he said: "We want no independence in this country, except the independence that we have at this moment. What country in the world is more independent than we are? We have perfect independence; we have a Sovereign who allows us to do as we please. We have an Imperial Government that casts on ourselves the responsibilities as well as the privileges of self-government. We may govern ourselves as we please, we may misgovern ourselves as we please. We put a tax on the industries of our fellow-subjects in England, Ireland, and Scotland. If we are attacked, if our shores are assailed, the mighty powers of England on land and sea are used in our defence." There may be some who think that the union of the empire cannot be maintained, because it is difficult to reconcile the475 impetuosity of youth with the prudence of old age. They think that in the impetuosity of youth, you will resent the prudence with which the mother country holds you back. Upon a wise view of it, we find in the distinctive qualities and defects of youth and age the elements of a felicitous combination. The father of the philosophy of history, Thucydides, has attributed to Alcibiades a great truth: "Consider that youth and age have no power unless united; but that the lighter and the more exact and the middle sort of judgment, when duly attempered, are likely to be most efficient." I hope that the wise policy with which the affairs of the British Empire may be conducted will illustrate the advantage of the mutual and combined influence of the young colonies and the old country. I feel deeply grateful for the privilege of being your guest on this occasion, and for the presence of many eminent men at your table. They have not assembled here merely to pay a compliment to an individual. They have come to express their deep interest in the Imperial Federation League. I shall go back deeply touched by the love I have seen the people of these colonies show Old England, whose greatest pride it is to have been the mother of mighty nations. I cannot sit down without acknowledging on behalf of Lady Brassey the kindness which you have shown in the mention of her name. I shall be a faithful reporter of your proceedings to my dear wife. She will greatly appreciate the kind reception given to her name.'

Sydney, July 9th, 1887.

A complimentary picnic was tendered to Lord Brassey on Saturday by the public works contractors of New South Wales. The picnic took the form of a trip to the Hawkesbury River, and about 150 gentlemen attended. Amongst those present were the Right Hon. W.B. Dalley, P.C., Sir John Robertson, Sir John Hay (President of the Legislative Council), Sir William Ogg, Sir Edward Strickland, Hon. Julian Salomons, Q.C., M.L.C. (Vice-President of the Executive), Hon. James Inglis (Minister of Public Instruction), Hon. F. Abigail (Minister for Mines), Hon. W. Clarke (Minister of Justice), Mr. Riley, M.P. (Mayor of Sydney), and others.

The party left Redfern in a special train shortly after nine o'clock in the morning, and arrived at Peat's Ferry about noon. At the ferry they viewed the work proceeding there in connection with the construction of the new bridge, and then went on board Captain Murray's river-boat, the 'General Gordon,' whose course was so shaped as to allow them the opportunity of seeing some of the most picturesque scenery with which the Hawkesbury abounds. On the upper deck arrangements had been made for the serving of a cold collation. Mr. J.C. Carey presided.

The Right Hon. W.B. Dalley proposed the health of 'Our distinguished guest, Lord Brassey.' In the course of his speech he said: 'Our hosts on476 this occasion are men who have in the construction of the great public works of this country expended about 14,000,000l. of the public funds during the last ten years. Their guest is the son of a man who had, by similar labours to those of their hosts on a gigantic scale, by means of his vast and unparalleled industrial enterprise, helped largely to change the face of the world; who had constructed some of the greatest monuments of our later civilisation in England and in India and in the British colonies, in France and in Germany, in Belgium and in Italy, in Spain, Denmark, and Russia. He was in the first rank of those benefactors of humanity, who perform prodigies of power in the control and management of their own private affairs, whose labours are extended over the whole world, and who leave on every shore the monuments of their own genius and the memorials of the power and resources of their country. For the greater portion of his eventful life he was doing a large share of the peaceful business of Europe, and nearly everywhere throughout the empire, in the erection of gigantic public works, he was earning and dispensing tens of millions, assembling in the construction of such great works the representatives of many nationalities, so that it has been said that the curious might have heard eleven different languages spoken in the execution of the same contract. He was heightening and extending the renown of Englishmen, upholding and increasing their reputation in the eyes of foreigners, and teaching lessons of greatness and of justice to the labouring millions of other nations. Here also in this colony he constructed some of the greatest of our public works. To the son of such a man, visiting our colony, it seemed right and fitting that our own public contractors should show all the honour which they could bestow upon him. In welcoming Lord Brassey to this company of men of enterprise and of large undertakings, and in asking him to meet men of representative character and position in the community, you make your compliment dearer and more precious because you are influenced by profound respect for the memory of his parent. Your guest, as a man who has served in great offices, and gained in a high degree the esteem and confidence of those who have known and watched his career, would have been entitled to a hearty welcome at the hands of British colonists for his own valuable and unselfish public services to the empire. But you have been prompted to honour, not only his personal merits and his individual labours, but the great industrial name which he bears—a name ennobled by the labour and enterprise of his father—because you are proud to associate yourselves with the career of one who had done, as you are in your smaller way endeavouring to do, much for mankind. I give you—a company of public contractors—the health of the son of the greatest of them all, the son of "Thomas Brassey."' (Cheers.)

Lord Brassey, in reply, said that he felt great difficulty in responding in worthy terms to the far too kind and flattering speech which had been made on behalf of his hosts. But it needed not a speech to express from a full heart his grateful appreciation of their kindness. He did not forget477 his origin. He was proud of it—(hear, hear)—and he could assure them—that if he had been spared the personal anxieties experienced by those employed in the execution of public works, he had a fellow-feeling for those who were engaged in that most valuable sphere of enterprise. The speech in which his name had been introduced to them referred—and he was glad that it did refer so largely—to the career of his dear father. He was proud to know that the opportunity was afforded to his father of performing the useful office of a pioneer of civilisation throughout the length and breadth of the world. His father entered timidly upon that career. He (Lord Brassey) had often heard him describe the day which led him to the execution of public works. At the time when the Liverpool and Manchester Railway—our first railway—was in contemplation, old George Stephenson came to see his father, then a young man, brought up as a surveyor and carrying on his business in Birkenhead, with reference to the purchase of some stone. His father conducted Mr. Stephenson to the quarry. The impression made upon Mr. Stephenson by his father was most favourable, and when he shook hands with him in the evening he said, 'Well, young man, there is something promising about you. I see a great field for railways. It would be well for you to follow my banner and enter upon this new sphere of enterprise.' The young man trembled at the idea, but he took the advice, tendered for a portion of the Liverpool railway, and during the construction of the first ten miles of that railway their guest was born. He would not enter into the details of his father's career, but he had often asked himself what was the secret of his success. He hoped he was not exaggerating his father's praise when he said that he believed his success was mainly due to his high and honest character; and if he might make one more reference to his father he would say this, that the motive which prompted him to extend his enterprise to the great limits which it ultimately reached was not primarily a love of money—it was the spirit of enterprise, and the ambition to be a constructor of great and noble works. The results which had followed from his labours were patent to all the world. They had done much to promote the prosperity of mankind. He (Lord Brassey) did not know that we could find greater evidence of the benefits of the railway system than here. These colonies could not expect prosperity without railways. The inheritance which devolved upon him as the son of his father had impressed upon him a heavy weight of responsibility; and he did most devoutly wish to turn to good account the opportunities that had been given to him. With this desire he had paid a visit to the shores of New South Wales. Every traveller who came from the old country and made friends with those living here was another link between the old country and the new. It rejoiced his heart to see so many evidences of the warm feeling of affection towards the old country, that dear mother land whose pride in and attachment to the colonies was growing stronger every year. We had seen great events happen during his short political career. We had seen Germany become a united nation, we had seen Italy become a united478 nation, and if the English-speaking and England-loving people intended to maintain their influence in the world, they must keep together (cheers); an united empire with local self-government was a happy solution of a great political problem. It had been rendered possible by that instinctive feeling of race which bound us all, and in that greatest gift in the science of politics—the common sense which was so eminently characteristic of the British race. He thanked them for their great kindness in receiving him on that occasion. Neither he nor his would ever forget that kindness.

At the conclusion of the speeches cheers were given for Lord and Lady Brassey.

The 'General Gordon' returned to Peat's Ferry late in the afternoon, the excursion having been a most enjoyable one, and the party reached Redfern early in the evening.





Aberdeen, Lord and Lady, 102

Aborigines, Australasian, 251, 252, 401

Acheen Head, 140

Achu Mohammed, 166

Adam, Mr., 32

Adelaide, 264, 266, 269

Adelaide Chamber of Commerce, 468

Aden, 3

Africa, British settlements on West coast of, 440

Afsur Jung, 50

Aga Sultan Mahomed Shah, 60

Agra, 29, 30

Agriculture in Ceylon, 100

Ah Sam, the faithful Chinaman, 394

Air-compressing tubes for producing fire, 148

Albany, 230, 231

Albany Pass, 400

Albatrosses, 223

Albion Lode Mine, Ballarat, 282

Albuquerque, Affonso, 86, 87

Allas Strait, 216

Alligators, 111, 159, 377

Amateur surgery, 144, 404

Amber, an ancient city of the Rajpoots, 26

Ambong Bay, 168

Amherstia nobilis, 102

Amomum repens, 94

Amritsar, 21

Ant-heaps, 401, 403

Antique coaches, 337

Apollo Bunder, the, 63, 65

Arco dos Vicereys, Goa, 84

Armadale, 332

Arnold, Mr. Edwin, quoted, 43

Ascension, 438

Australian exploration, 270

Australian gold-diggers, 186, 187

Australian up-country hotels, 354

'Bacchante,' H.M.S., 59, 63, 70

Bajans, or sea-gipsies, 178, 204

'Bajara' (steamship), 212, 213

Balhalla Island, 175, 178

Ballarat, 281

Ballarat, Mayor and Mayoress of, 281, 282

Ballard, Mr., 350

Bannerman, Colonel, 30

Barnacles, 218

Barnes, Colonel, 14

Barram river, 153, 156

Barrier Reef, Great, 395-397

Barter, native, 149, 161

Bathing in the tropics, 92

Bathurst, 318

Baumantia, 365

Bêche-de-mer, 394, 396, 397, 414

Bees, 192

Beeswax, 192

Bell-bird, 321

Beloochees, 6

Benares, 32

'Bengal' (steamship), 288

Bertram, Mr., 366

Bevan, Mr., 310

Beypoor, 94

Bijapur, 51

Bilian-wood, 180480

Birds, 377, 379

Bird's-nests, 157, 178, 190-197, 204

Bird's-nest caves, 177, 189-197

Birds of Paradise, 214, 418

Bishop of Melbourne, 295

Black, Mr., 109

Black Book of Taymouth, 58

'Black-boys' (Xanthorrhea), 234

Black-buck, 39-41

Blackheath Hill, Blue Mountains, 320

Black Spur, 300

Blacktown, 317

Bligh, Captain, of the 'Bounty,' 395

Blue Mountains, the, 319

Blyden, Mr., 440

Boats, Queensland native, 372

Boer, the, 436

'Bokhara,' P. & O., 141, 142

Bokharas, the, 6

Bolarum, 37

Bombay Light Horse, 59

Bombay and Burmah Company's timber-yard, 130, 131

Boomerangs, 218, 232

Booth, Mr. E.T., quoted, 160

Borneo, 143

Borneo weapons, 184

Bosanquet, Capt. and Mrs., 315, 323

Botanical Gardens, Ceylon, 10;
Sydney, 323

'Bottle-brush,' the, 276

Bougainvillea, the, 350, 365

Boughton Islands, 342

'Bounty,' mutiny of the, 395

Bowen, 369

Boynton, Sir H., quoted, 161

Brassey, Lady, death of, xx, 427, 457

Brassey, Lord, speeches of, 466-478

Bray, Mr., 270, 314

Breadfruit, 373

'Break-of-day' birds, 242

Bridge, Captain, 372

Bridge, Mr. (chaplain), 14

Brisbane, 342

Brisbane Sailing Club, 347

British African Company, 440

British North Borneo Company, 143, 168, 190

British settlements on West coast of Africa, 440

Broken-hill silver-mine, 273

'Bromo' (gunboat), 212

Brooke, Rajah, 145

Brown, Mr. Harvie, quoted, 6

Bruit river, 153

Brunei, 160, 162

Brunei river, 159, 160

Brunei, Sultan of, 160, 165

Byculla Club ball, 68

Byculla races, 70

Byham's monument, 38

Bylus, 125

Buckboard, a, 280

Buck-hunting, 39-41

Buck-jumpers, 281

Bundey, Mr. Justice, 267, 270

Burmese costumes, 121

Burmese bells, 128

Burnand, Mr., 274

Bush flowers, 253

Bush hotel, a, 241

Cabbage-palms, 383

Cairns Harbour, 388

Caladium-leaf umbrellas, 105

Calamus, 205

Calicut, 93

Callaghan, Mr., 183, 185, 188

Callocalia, 157

Campbell, Sir Colin, 31

Cannon, Mr., 26

Canoes, 415

Cape Bustard, 347

Cape Byron, 342

Cape Colony, 435

Cape de Verdes, 443

Cape Direction, 395

Cape Flinders, 262

Cape Hawke, 342

Cape Rachada, 141

Cape Town, 432, 433

Cape Tribulation, 390

Cape Yorke, 404

Cape wine-trade, 431

Cardamoms, 94481

Cardwell, 380

Carey, Colonel, 106

Carrington, Lord and Lady, 310, 311, 314, 324

Carwar, 91

Cattle-camp, a, 363

Cattle-rearing, 334, 340, 362, 400, 428

Cattle, wild, 171

Caulfield races, 296

Caves, bird's-nest, 177, 189-197

Caves, Moulmein, 134

Cawnpore, 30-32

Ceylon, 97

Celebes, the, 203

Challenger Bay, 372

Chapman, Colonel, 17

Charts, 399

Cheetahs, 39-41

Chinamen in British colonies, 339, 384, 394, 405, 428, 430

Chinese Commissioners in New South Wales, 317, 336, 339

Chlorination of gold ore, 356

Chronometers, 227

Church Missionary Society, 440

Clarence Strait, 427

Clarke, Sir W., 298

Coach-travelling in the colonies, 337, 344, 345, 361

Coaches, antique, 337

Coal, 220

Coaling-stations, 438, 440, 443

Coal-mines, 329

Cochin, 94

Cockatoos, 253

Cockburn, 273

Cochrane, Sir Thomas, 159

Cocoa-nut Island, 413, 421

Cocoa-nuts, 111, 415, 417

Cocos, the, 116

Coffee-cultivation in Ceylon, 101

Coffee leaf-fungus, 101

Coffins in caves, 197

Colliery, a, in New South Wales, 328

Collisions at sea, 388

Colombo, 97, 98

Coloured races, capabilities of, 440

Connaught, Duke and Duchess of, 54, 62, 68, 70

Constantia, 433

Convicts, escaped, 407

Coode, Sir John, 433

Cook, Captain, 395

Cooktown, 392

Coral, 401

Coral reefs, 396, 399

Cordery, Mr., 34, 50

Cornish miners in Australia, 285

Cornwall, Miss, 283, 284, 288

Corrugated-iron buildings, 405

Cowie, Mr. and Mrs., 167

Cranes, 377

Crawford, Mr., 52, 77

Creek Meat Canning Factory, 366

Crocker, Mr., 143, 176, 183, 185, 188, 195, 206

Crocodiles, 113, 172

Crossing the line, ceremony of, 215, 216

Crossthwaite, Mrs., 121, 129

Cubadjee (Australian aboriginal), 276

Cumberland Isles, 367, 368

Da Carvalho, Captain, 83

Da Fonseca, quoted, 85

Daintree river, 390

Dairy farms, 256

Dalhousie, Lord, 2

Dances, Dyak, 181

Darling Downs, the, 340

Darling river, 333

Darnley Island, 413, 414

Darvel Bay, 186, 203

Dashtar, Mr., 10

Davenport, Sir Samuel, 269

Davies, Mr., 170-172

Day, Major and Mrs., 151

Deakin, Mr., 292

De Burgh Persse, Mr. and Mrs., 344

De Castella, Mr., 300

Delhi, 26

Des Graz, Mr., 50, 92, 240, 298, 374

Dewani Khas, Jeypore, 26

De Winton, Sir Francis, 442482

Dholepore, 30

Diamond-fields, 437

Diamond-trade, 431

Dillon, General, 18

Divers, 410, 424

Dodd, Captain, 134

Dogs, regulations concerning, in Australia, 231, 332, 354

Doldrums, the, 379

Domestic life at Brunei, 168

Donaldson, Mr. H.D., 81

Dowling Forest, 283

Drum, a native, 402

Dundas, Miss, 289

Dungeness, 374

Dusuns, the, 181

Dutch colonists, 210, 434

Dyaks, 148, 151, 152, 156, 160, 181

Earrings, 167

Eclipse of the moon, 364

Edible bird's-nests, 94, 138, 189-197

Elder, Sir Thomas, 276

Eleopura, 175

Elephants, 45, 111, 113, 130, 131, 134

Elliott Island, 347

Ellora, 32, 33

Elsmie, Mr., 21

Emerald, 359

Endeavour river, 359

Erskine, Mr., 12

Eucalypti, 234, 276, 344

Eucalyptus oil, 393

Everett, Mr., 155

Evening at sea, 93

'Everlasting' flowers, 250

Exercise, 256

Exploration in South Australia, 270

Fairfax, Mrs., 289, 323

Falconberg, 321

Falkland Islands, 387

Falls of Gairsoppa, 91

Fanshawe, Captain, 132

Faraday, Professor, quoted, 148

Fayal, 443-445

Fences, Australian, 297

Ferguson, Mr., cited, 51

Fern-gullies, 302, 305, 321

Fern Island, 399

Ferns, 365

Fernshaw, 301, 303

Fire-making by air-compressing tubes, 148

Fitzgerald, Mr., 395

Fitzroy river, 367

Fleming, Mr., 430

Flinders Channel, 421

Flint, Mr., 176, 178, 180, 185

Floating islands, 154, 208

Flowers, 253, 365

Fly Point, 400

Fly River, 418-420

Flying-fox Gully, 319

Fraser Island, 347

Funeral of a Phoongyee, 124

Funeral procession at Colombo, 98

Furdonji Jamsetjee, Mr., 42

Futtehpore Sikri, 29

Galle, 107

Ganesh Khind, 52

Gardner, Mr., 326, 332

Gascoigne, Captain, 315, 317

Gautama, 127

Geelong, 286

Geelong, Mayor of, 286

German industry, 345

Gilchrist, Major, 34, 72

Glenelg, 263, 265

Gloucester Island, 369

Goa, 81-97

Gold-fields, 188, 246, 277, 282-285, 352, 392, 393, 436

Golkonda, 35

Gomanton bird's-nest caves, 177

Goode Island, 405, 411

Gordon, Captain, 58

Gordonia rubra, 213

Gray, quoted, 258, 259

Great Barrier Reef, 368, 396

Great Coco, 116

Griffin, Sir Lepel, 71

Griffith, Sir Samuel, 344483

Guicowar of Baroda, the, 69

Guilfoyle, Mr., 305

Gum, 170

Gum-trees, 234

Gundy sugar-plantation, 382

Gutta-percha, 156

Gwalior, 30

Halifax sugar-plantation, 376

Hall, Mr., 407, 424

Hall, Mr. Wesley, 352, 353

Hamilton, Captain, 57, 68, 70, 72

Hamilton, Lieutenant, 155

Hammill, Captain, 316, 317

Hannay, Major and Mrs., 53

Hannibal Islands, 399

'Harrier' (gunboat), 391, 392

Hassall, Mr., 246

Hats, women's, at Brunei, 160

Hatton, Frank, 182

Hawkesbury river, 475

Hay, Mrs., 276

Head-flatteners, 148

Head-hunters, 160, 192, 193

Healesville, 301, 304

Hemileia vastatrix, 101

Herbert, Mr., 72

Herbert river, 374

Herberton river, 388

'Hercules,' H.M.S., 2

Hinchinbrook Island, 378, 380

Hindoo ladies, 68

Hindoo wedding, 43

Hixson, Captain, 322

Hobson's Bay, 286

Hodgkinson, Mr., 129, 130, 132

Hoffmeister, Dr., 51, 182, 322

Hofmeyr, Mr., 436

Holdfast Bay Yacht Club, 263

Holothuria, 397

Home Islands, 399

Honey, Commodore, 267

Horse-dealers, Arabian, 70

Horse-fair at Shikarpur, 5, 13

Horses, 334

Horses in coal-mines, 330

Horta, 443, 444, 446

Hot springs at Kanniya, 109, 111

Houses in Borneo, 170

Hübner, Baron, quoted, 432, 436

Hunt, a, in Australia, 275

Hunt, Mr. and Mrs., 412, 414, 415, 419, 420

Hunting with cheetahs, 39-41

Hyderabad, 43-50

Ice-making, 210

Iguanas, 242

Illuminations at Bombay, 63

Immigrants in New South Wales, 338

Imperial Federation League, 285, 299, 471

Inglis, Mr., 314

Inquisition stake, Goa, 89

Ipomœa, 377

Irrawaddy river, 119

Jain temples, at Agra and Gwalior, 29, 30

Jamestown, St. Helena, 437

Jamrud Fort, 17, 18

Jardine, Mr., 400, 401, 408

Javanese workpeople in Queensland, 385

'Jenny Jenkins' (monkey), 259

Jessop, Mr., 269

Jewels, 64

Jeypore, 27, 28

Jinjeera, 73, 74

'Jinkas,' 238, 239

Jinrikishas, 104, 105

Johnstone river, 382, 387

Johore, Sultan of, 141, 143, 165

Jubbulpore, 33

Jubilee celebrations in India, 50, 54, 58, 70;
at Melbourne, 294

Jumping fish, 110

'Jumna,' H.M.S., 118

Jungle in Queensland, 383

Jungle-cock, 110

Kaffirs, 437

Kanakas, 376, 416, 419484

Kandy, 99, 104

Kangaroo Island, 262

Kangaroos, 245, 248, 253, 255, 361

Kanniya, hot springs at, 109, 111

Kapuan timber-station, 178

Keating, Mrs., 70

Keith, Captain, 30

Kendenup, 240, 245, 247

Keppel Bay, 347

Keppel, Sir Harry, 159, 167

Kernford, Mr. Justice, 293

Kettles, whistling, 167

Khassia, 73

Khurseed Jah, 47

Khyber Pass, 17

'Kilwa,' the, 132, 133

Kimberley, 431

Kina Balu, 168, 172

King, Mr., 332

King George Sound, 230

King Jack, 415, 417

Koordal, a reserve for Australian aboriginals, 300

Koti river, 208

Kruger, President, 435

Kuching, 145

Kuching river, navigation in, by direction-posts, 146

Kudat, 169

Kurrachee, 10

Kusti (Parsee cord), 59

Kutab Minar, the, 23, 24, 26

Kylies, or boomerangs, 248, 252

Labuan, 155

'Lady Brassey' nugget, the, 285

Lahore, 15, 16, 20

Laidby, Mr. and Mrs., 341, 342

Lamb, Dr., 170, 172

Lampton, 328

Largs Bay, 266

Laughing jackass, 321

Laurence, Maude, 14, 54, 72

Layard, Sir C.P., quoted, 100

Leaf-fungus, coffee, 101

Lee, the gatherer of bêche-de-mer, 397, 398

Leeches, 205

Levinge, Mr., 381, 386

Leys, Dr. and Mrs., 156

Life at sea, 92

'Liguria' (steamship), 224

Lilies, 350, 366, 377, 438

Lindsay, Mr. David, 270, 276

Liquid gold, 355

Little, Mr., 172

Little Coco, 116

Liveries in Ceylon, 102, 103

Lizard Island, 394

Loch, Sir Henry and Lady, 289, 292-294, 298

Loftie, Mr. and Mrs., 231, 232

Log of 'Sunbeam,' abstract of—
Portsmouth to Bombay, 448, 449;
Bombay to Kurrachee, Rangoon, Borneo, and Macassar, 450-452;
Macassar to Adelaide, South Australia, 453;
Adelaide to Melbourne, Sydney, and Port Darwin, 454-456;
Port Darwin to Mauritius and Cape of Good Hope, 457, 458;
Cape of Good Hope to Portsmouth, 458-460;
summary, 461

Logodium scandens, 373

Lombok, 217

Longwood, St. Helena, 438

Lotus tank, Colombo, 98

Low Islands, 390

Loyal cockatoos, 254

Lucknow, 31

Lycopodium, 373

Lyre-bird, 321

Lyttelton, Colonel, 12

Macalister Range, 389

Macassar, 210, 211

Macdonald, Dr. and Mrs., 350, 364

Maclean, Mr., 106

McLean, Mr., 50, 66

MacNabb, Mr., 300

Madai bird's-nest caves, Darvel Bay, 183, 189-197

Magnetic Island, 370

Maharajah of Patiala, 22485

Mahommedan ladies, 68

Malabar Point, 57, 61, 68, 71

Malades imaginaires, 96

Malaria, 428

Malin, Mr. S., 267

Manchester regiment at Agra, 29

Mandovi river, 82

Mangalore, 92

Maradu Bay, 170

Marble Rocks, Nerbudda river, 31, 33

Marburg, 344

Marine phenomenon, a, 218

Marshall, Colonel, 49, 50

Mason-bees, 150

Mauritius, 428

Maxwell, Mr., 147, 150

Mayhew, Colonel, 12

Meat Canning Factory, a, 366

Medusæ, 118, 258

Meerut, 26

Mehdi Ali's wife, 67

Melbourne, 287

Meldrum, Dr., 430

Memorial Gardens, Cawnpore, 30

Message-sticks, 253

Midas Mine, Ballarat, 283

Middleton, Captain, 106

Milanos, the, 148

Milking cows, method of, 334

Millar, Mr., 271

Millett, Mr., 113

Milman, Mr. and Mrs., 407, 411-413, 417, 422, 424

Mines, curious names of, 351

Mir Alam tank, 46

Mirs falconer, the, 5

Mitchell, Mr., 21

Mohamed Hyat Khan, 14

Monkeys, 52

Montefiore, Mr., 314

Mooltan, 14

Moore, Captain, 70

Moran, Cardinal, 312

Moreton Island, 343

Morley, Mr. Arnold, 2

Moscos Group, the, 138

Mosque of Ibrahim Rozah, 51

Mosquitoes, 393

Moulmein, 133

Mount Cook, 392

Mount Gambier, 289, 290

Mount Morgan, 35