Sept. 1, 1800.—The Island is in a most flourishing condition and the resort of shipping is so great that land is become exceedingly valuable.
March 23.—Gov. Brook's departure 16th March in Highland Chief, Colonel Francis Robson assumes the Government, and Major Cocks sworn into Council.
March 10, 1802.—Gov. Patton landed this morning under a salute of 19 guns, was introduced into the Council Room where the new Commission was read by the Secretary. Then adjourned to the Grand Parade the Commission was again read in presence of the Garrison by the Town Major, after which a salute of 19 guns was fired. The troops fired a feu de joie and Gov. Patton entered the Castle under the usual complement of a general salute.
March 29.—Census—Military 892, Civil Servants and Familles 122, Planters and others 241, Free Blacks 227, Slaves 1029. Total 2511.
Sept. 23.—Return of Property lost during last six months from authenticated returns—supposed to be stolen—Cattle 2, Sheep 186, Goats 279, Hogs 22, Turkeys 7, Geese 1, Ducks 2, Fowls 129, Potatoes 34 bushels, Yam 3792 lbs, Plantains 25 bunches, Brandy 51 doz, Cordials 4 doz, Soap 12 cwt, Apples 200 (from 22 Proprietors).
Police Fund established and weekly sitting of Magistrates.
Dogs to be diminished. Dog Tax increased from 5s. to 10s., of which 5s to Police Fund. Collars to be worn or Dogs to be destroyed. For distinction, Collars of Dogs of Govt. servants Brass, others Tin.
A register to be kept at Police Office of number and names of free Blacks and Slaves. The Govt. intends to appoint occasional weekly patrols from the Volunteer corps. A file from the Rifle Company accompanied by a file of selected Black freemen to visit different quarters of the Island between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m., to report absentees, &c.
Aug. 23, 1803.—Dutch prize captured by H.M.S Caroline under Admiralty orders 19th May 1803. Brings the first intelligence that war has been renewed between France and England,
Feb. 23.—Arrived the Mary (Whaler) on 21st Feb. The Mary ignorant of the war put into the Cape for refreshment and was seized according to the customs of war. The two officers who brought her to St. Helena and the Captain were permitted liberty on parole and the rest of the crew though confined were treated well. While there the Matilda (Cartel) arrived from Pondicherry with French prisoners and the crew of the Mary were permitted to ship in the Matilda. They took advantage of the opportunity in the night to proceed on board the Mary, recaptured her, overpowering the 7 men in charge, cut the cables, sent back the Dutch guard in the Matilda's boat and escaped to sea. Gov. Patton adds:—The whole of this transaction as narrated by the Perpetrators themselves appears to me highly reprehensible if not attrociously criminal, being derogatory to the character and honour of the nation. Proposes that the command of the Mary be taken from the two mates—that she be sent under charge to His Majesty's Ministers at Home and that a person be sent to the Cape with despatches detailing what had been done.
March 2.—Arrived on 29th February Dutch schooner Hope (Cartel) from Cape with Gov. Jansen's representation to Gov. Patton of the seizure of the Mary and demanding restitution. The English Cartel Matilda has been provisionally seized. Gov. Patton had already written to Gov. Jansen, and his aide-de-camp Lieut. Hansen was on the point of sailing for the Cape when the Hope arrived. Lieut. Gambier the officer from the Cape returned in the same vessel with Lieut. Hansen bearing Gov. Patton's despatch.
July 2.—Colonel Lane proposes that decked Fishing Bots of 30 feet keel should be used—enabled to explore in all directions to the distance of 10 leagues round the Island—supposed that there are banks running out from the Island to a much greater distance and it is on that description of ground out of the reach of open boats that an ample supply of fish is to be expected, and of a different kind and superior quality ever yet experienced. Six boats with 3 men and 2 boys to each would be more than sufficient to supply the whole Island.
July 6.—Triumphal arrival of the China fleet on the 9th June after beating off Admiral Linois squadron consisting of a large 74, two heavy frigates, a corvette and a brig in an action fought near Pilo Auro where we had long known the French meant to way-lay them.
June 24, 1805.—Two boats arrived bringing Mr. Dunn, Master and crew of Whaler Coldstream which vessel had been captured by a French Privateer Bellona, which had been cruizing to the Windward of the Island for more than a month.
May 5, 1806.—Sir Home Popham arrived at St. Helena on his way from the Cape of Good Hope with the expedition to Buenos Ayres, having only a very small force he applied to the Gov. to aid him from the Garrison. This Gov. Patton readily did being in possession of orders from the Secret Committee at the Indian House which encouraged him to do so and he made up a select detachment from the Garrison Light Infantry and Artillery amounting to 282 men and placed them under the orders of Sir Home Popham. The expedition turned out to be an unfortunate one and either on this account, or from disagreement among the Directors Gov. Patton instead of being commended for his exertions was strongly censured
In answer to the censure the Gov. quoted the orders which he had received from the Secret Department, viz:—"We the Secret Committee hereby direct you to afford every aid in your power consistently with the due protection and security of your own Island to H. M. Land and Naval forces under the command of Major General Sir David Baird and Sir Home Popham in any operation in "which you may be required by them to assist." The Directors nevertheless decided the expedition was a rash and ill advised measure and deserving of our most serious reprehension; they said that no inclination on the part of the Government to assist H. M. forces nor any recommendation to this effect from the Secret Committee ought to have induced the Governor thus to sacrifice his own paramount duty and they concluded that the whole of the details in this and of the former transactions and the frequent representations made to us of the want of energy in every department and the lax discipline of the Garrison call upon us without loss of time to take into our serious consideration the state of your Island with a view to make such alterations in the Government as appear to us to be required, and with this view we shall without any delay sit down to this inquiry and shall direct our attention to the whole of an establishment which we are of an opinion requires radical amendment.
Oct. 11.—A brig the Jolly Tar purchased for the service of the Island Government whilst being prepared and fitted out she was cut out of the harbour at night by some foreigners who were serving in the Garrison assisted by three officers Spanish or French passengers on board a vessel from the Cape and who were regarded as on parole. She was carried to Rio. Mr. Lees was one of her officers gave the following particulars of the seizure of the vessel after his return to St. Helena, viz:—On Saturday 11 th Oct. Mr. Sweete, Chief Officer in command, myself, and 8 others were on board the Jolly Tar. At 8 p.m. the watch set as usual. At about 11 o'clock Wood the seaman on the watch called out that a boat was alongside. I immediately jumped up and before I got to the gangway 1 was surrounded by numbers of men with Bayonets. Some rushed down the cabin and some clown forward to secure the seamen. I was by this time wounded in three different places—Head, left arm and neck. Mr. Sweete was most cruelly massacred and was thrown overboard. The cables were cut. Next morning we were out of sight of the Island. The pirates 17 in number were almost all soldiers of the Garrison except three Spanish officers who I had seen on shore as I supposed on their Parole of Honour. Eleven days after we fell in with a Portuguese brig and we were put on board and carried to Rio Janeiro. The soldiers were 10 of them foreigners enlisted in and belonging to the Garrison. The three officers were Spanish or French passengers from the Cape and were regarded as on parole.
March 9, 1807.—The Measles introduced here from the last Fleet from the Cape are now so completely epidemic that not a single family in the Island have escaped their influence.
Feb. 16.—About 11 o'clock last night a ledge of Rocks gave way over the Wharf by which one of the Lascars was killed on the spot and six others severely wounded.
April 20.—Total 150 Deaths in March and April from Measles.
July 20.—Governor Patton embarked yesterday for England in H.M.S Sir Edward Hughes. Colonel Lane sworn in as Governor and Robert Leach 4th in Council.
July 4, 1808.—Governor Beatson arrived with H.M.S Thetis and H.C. Ships Europe, Lord Castlereagh, and Lord Keith. Council—Gov. Beatson, Colonel Broughton, Mr. W. Doveton and Mr. Leach.
July 8.—Mr. Burchill directed to collect a bushel of the most brilliant coloured earths and some of the dung of the Sea Fowl on Egg Island to be sent to England.
Oct. 7.—Granary [now the Custom House] on West side of Parade to be built at £1500 cost. This part of the Parade in 1808 was disfigured by a cluster of miserable huts.
Oct. 23, 1809.—Burial Grounds.—Mr. Leach reports:—Many of the Lanes directed to be kept open for the purpose of carrying off water falling from the side of Ladder Hill are stopped. Deep channels had been cut on the side of the Hill to carry off all the water into the Burial Ground by the Barracks. The ground is in a shameful neglected state having more the appearance of a common for Dogs than a burial place for deceased Christians.
Oct. 23.—Notification issued that on arrival of a vessel with cargo for sale, the Government may first purchase. Afterwards Govt. Servants and Landholders and after three days Shopkeepers.
Nov. 17.—Specimens of Aloe Fibre submitted.
Sept. 21, 1810.—Within the last 50 years many Gumwood trees grew on the hills between Rupert's and Deadwood and there is a tradition that a thick wood occupied Half-Tree Hollow and that some persons who had advanced therein lost their way and perished.
May 24, 1811.—President of Bencoolen writes that a small Island of great importance to the accommodation of that port had been so encroached on by the sea that for aid to its security they desire 200 tons of stone ballast from St. Helena.
Letters to England, May 3, 1807.—Measles introduced by a Fleet on 24th January. The information of the existence of the disease in the fleet reaching the Gov. too late to avert the most direful calamity that has ever befallen your Island and we cannot but lament that Capt. Leigh of the Georgiana who knew the disorder raged at the Cape when be left it and who arrived here some days before the fleet, had not made us acquainted with the circumstance.
The Register of Burials from 1st March to 1st May exhibited a list of 102 Blacks and 58 Whites, but many more blacks have been carried off the exact number of whom has not yet been ascertained as they had not been Christened and their burials of course not registered in the Church Books.
May 3.—The extent of distress which for a time pervaded all ranks is beyond description as in many Families including servants every person was at the same moment incapable of the least exertion.
Most of the Garrison Officers are now so far recovered as to render it no longer necessary for a Non-commissioned Officer to command the Main Guard at night a measure the Governor was obliged to adopt for some weeks.
Experience from recent sufferings has occasioned great anxiety respecting the introduction of the Small Pox which would probably prove still more fatal. Endeavours therefore have been made to obtain the Vaccine infection from the Cape of Good Hope.
On 21st April arrived a Fleet under the orders of Admiral Murray, viz: H.M.S. Polyphemus, Africa, Nereida, Haughty, and Saracen. Flying Fish Camel storeship with 32 sail of Transports having on board a body of land forces under Brigadier-General Cranford. The destination kept secret. Sailed from the Cape on 6th April and came hither apparently for the purpose of completing their water.
June 26.—Box containing Specimens of Colours collected on the Island by Mr. Burchill who is of opinion that they may be approved of by artists in England.
July 16, 1808.—Specimens of Guano from Egg Island sent to England.
Nov. 19, 1809.—Fibres of Aloe sent to England with 18 casks of Kelp and 10 casks of Lichens.
May 12, 1810.—On the morning of the 3rd instant, a fleet appeared to Windward which proved to be 22 East Indiamen named under the convoy of H.M.S. Dedaigneuse. They came to anchor the same evening but from the confusion which arose from so many ships pushing at once for the anchorage and the Wind being high several came in Contact—considerable damage was done and the Europe and Walhamstow were blown out of the Roads. After the Commanders came on shore it was ascertained three of the Ships had Measles on board. It is impossible at present to ascertain whether the infection has been communicated on shore or not, but all events we cannot apprehend a repetition of the serious calamity which befel the Island in 1806 as almost every one of the Inhabitants has had the disorder except some of the officers of the detachment which was sent to Buenos Ayres.
[Note.—The Measles did not show themselves in the Island again until 1843 when they were brought from the Cape and produced much distress. It deserves remark that in no case in 1843 did any of the survivors of 1806 have a recurrence of Measles, but Captain Robert Wright, the only one of the surviving officers of the Garrison who was absent in South America in 1806, died from the disease immediately on its introduction in 1843.
Previously to the arrival of Governor Beatson a system had prevailed of allowing Government servants, civil and military, to draw provisions from the Company's stores at fixed prices, which in 1811 proved to be much under prime cost.
On discoverng that this was the case Governor Beatson made an alteration in the prices which created much dissatisfaction amongst the servants of the Company.
The use of spirituous liquors in the garrison was also carried to great excess, a large percentage of the troops being constantly in the hospital on this account. Governor Beatson to remedy this evil prohibited the importations of Indian Spirits under any pretence whatever and the landing of higher priced spirits from Europe was sanctioned only in limited quantities and on payment of a duty of 12s. a gallon. This with some other causes of complaint led to a highly mutinous feeling in the Garrison.
On 23rd Dec. 1811, the Governor received an anonymous letter demanding on the part of the troops full rations of spirits and threatening serious consequences if refused.
The intention of the regiment of infantry was to seize the Governor and send him away in the Camperdown, a cutter in the harbour belonging to the Island.
The details of the mutiny which broke out on the 24th Dec. are fully related in Beatson's Tracts; it need only be said now that 250 men sallied at night from Jamestown Barracks upon this mad and desperate enterprize, they made their way to Longwood and seized the Lieut.-Gov. Broughton and then proceeded for Plantation. The regiment of artillery, a large number of the infantry, and the regiment of volunteers kept faithful guard and when the mutineers reached Plantation at daylight in the morning only 75 of the original number of mutineers remained together. They were completely surrounded, and compelled to surrender; being brought to immediate trial six of the most guilty were forthwith hung at High Knoll. Another principal ringleader was tried and hung on the 26th in Jamestown. Subordination was thus thoroughly restored; the Governor's thanks were then expressed to the officers of St. Helena; to the corps of artillery, who almost to a man escaped the contagion; to the St. Helena Volunteers for their loyalty and eagerness to do their duty and to the portion of the infantry who remained firm to the Government.
It deserves notice that when the retail spirit houses were abolished the garrison numbered 1250 men, of whom 132 were sick in hospital; four months after that abolition the patients were reduced to 48.]
April 10, 1812.—Rev. Mr. Jones complains of a public Insult to him at the Easter Vestry where he was elected "Inspector of the Common Sheep and Goats.'' Suggests as Inspector that the Sheep be taken to their respective owners farms and the goats be destroyed which would prevent his appointment from interfering with more important duties. Otherwise he had already a very wild herd of goats under his charge, viz., those whose conduct is here reprobated.
April 3, 1813.—Large exports of Specie—£10000 in the last two ships—to prevent it currency raised. Rupee 2s. 6d. Dollar 5s. 9d., Ducatoon 6s. 8d., Doubloon £3 19s. Since Proclamation was issued application made for Bills on the Directors for a considerable amount and Specie was being landed to traffic in such Bills.
June 22.—Governor Wilks and Lieut.-Gov. Skelton arrived 21st June in the Sir Wm. Pulteney, Col. Greentree retired.
Aug. 21st.—Mark Wilks Governor—New Commission opened this day. (Colonel Beatson kept the chair after Col. Wilks arrival from 21st June until now.)
Oct. 11.—St. Helena Library established with patronage of Governor.
Jan. 24, 1814.—Dr. Roxburgh recommends Cinchona officinalis to be obtained from South America and prepared at St. Helena for transmission to India when the plants are strong enough for removal.
Aug. 15.—30 Slaves of the Government of Isle of France had in 1811 secreted themselves on board the prize Frigate and were landed at St. Helena. Lord Bathurst desired they should be returned to Isle of France and the slaves themselves wished it. The Governor doubted whether he might not infringe the Act of Parliament by doing so and consults the Hon: George Smith Chief Justice of the Isle of France (and now at St. Helena) who advises they may be returned under the special circumstances.
Jan. 16, 1815.—The schooner St. Helena arrived from England 12th January and placed at the disposal of the St. Helena Government.
Sept. 15.—G. O.—A Royal Salute ordered to be fired immediately in honor of the decisive victory obtained by the Duke of Wellington over Buonaparte in person with the capture of 214 pieces of cannon. A festival for the Garrison with the usual allowance of Wine to be prepared and issued on Thursday. All prisoners Civil and Military are ordered to be released with the exception of a prisoner committed to take his trial for Burglary.
Oct. 11.—Wednesday arrived H. M. brig Icarus from England. Thursday 12th H.M. Frigate Havannah ditto.
Oct. 15.—Sunday 15th October arrived H.M. ship Northumberland from England bearing the flag of Rear Admiral Sir George Cockburn and having on board General Napoleon Buonaparte and certain State Prisoners, viz:—Marshal and Countess Bertrand, Count and Countess Monthelon, General Gourgurd, Count Las Cases and Son and eight servants.
Also arrived H.M. brigs of war Peruvian, Zenobia, and Red Pole.
Oct. 19.—H.M.S. Bucephalus and a part of 53rd Regt. H.M.S. Ceylon and ditto.
April 15—H.M.S. Phæton arrived Sunday 14th April with Governor Sir Hudson Lowe. Commission read and proclaimed on 15th April.
Letters from England, Aug. 1, 1815.—Napoleon Buonaparte having surrendered himself to the Govt. of this country His Majesty's Ministers deeply sensible of the high importance of effectually securing the person of a man whose conduct has proved so fatal to the happiness of the world, and judging that the Island of St. Helena is conveniently fitted to answer that purpose have proposed to us that he shall be placed there under a system of Government adapted to serve the end in view, but innovating no further and no longer upon the present constitution of Government and the conduct of its affairs than that end shall require. We have not failed to express our opinion of Colonel Wilks' merits to H.M. Government who have also a just sense of his character and talents, and it is from no objection personal to him, or any want of personal consideration for him that they propose another Governor, but because they think the peculiar nature of the service and the confidential communications and details personal as well as written into which they will have to enter with the gentleman who shall fill that office require he should be of the class of General officers who served in the scene of the late continental events and be sent from this country. As however the Crown is to defray all the expenses consequent of this new arrangement in the Government of St. Helena so His Majesty's Ministers have declared their intention of granting Colonel Wilks a fair compensation for the loss and disappointment to which he will be subjected.
As the officer destined to be the new Governor of St. Helena is not yet arrived from the Continent and it is judged expedient to convey Buonaparte to that Island without delay Rear Admiral Sir George Cockburn who commands the Squadron appointed to guard him thither is invested by H.M. Govt. with the temporary care and custody of him until the new Governor shall arrive.
Aug, 2.—The Prince Regent has been pleased to approve of all the Military officers of the Comp. Service on your establishment receiving corresponding Commissions from H.R.H. with local rank in the Island of St. Helena of the same date which they now hold from the E.I.C. * * in order that no inconvenience may be felt by the officers of your Establishment on the arrival of the 2nd Battalion of H.M. 53rd Regiment which it is intended to embark for the service of the Island.
Jan. 19, 1816.—Copy of Company's instructions to Sir Hudson Lowe as Governor. The Prince Regent's Ministers having proposed that the Island of St. Helena should be the place of Residence for Buonaparte and that the Comp. would for the sake of the important objects connected with the safe custody of that extraordinary person put the Govt. of the Island during his stay here in the hands of an officer possessing their confidence, the Court of Directors always disposed to make the means of the Comp. available to the public interest acquiesced in these proposals and the same ministers having further selected and recommended you for the trust we have appointed you to be Governor.
The population by the latest return taken 30th Sept. 1814 may be classed as follows: European Inhabitants 736, Garrison 891, Free Blacks 420, Slaves 1293, Chinese 247, total 3587. The administration is invested in the Governor and Council. St. Helena may be considered in the same light as Gibraltar merely a Garrison and it would thence apparently require only a Governor and Lieut.-Governor. But from the description given of the population and the laws to be enforced it has been thought expedient to associate one or more of the oldest inhabitants in the Govt. whose knowledge and experience of the local regulations and customs might render them of great assistance to the Governors who have been generally strangers thereto upon their first appointment.
The laws are assimilated nearly to those in force in this country in conformity with orders of very ancient date, but there are some local ordinances chiefly applicable to the tenure of lands the conditions of which are dictated by the Company in the right of the grant of the Island. The conduct to be observed by masters to their slaves and slaves to their masters is also prescribed in a separate code of laws, copies of which will be forwarded for general circulation. The military are of course subject to Martial Law.
April 15, 1815.—Mr. Amoret Young's slave Samuel shot in the head by a centinel from the shore who fired at another boat. Compensation allowed £120.
Nov. 25.—Improvements by Gov. Wilks. 3226 yards drain and lead pipe from Wells' to Longwood £1231 10s. 6d.
Repairs and additions to Plantations £3485 10s.
Fencing and planting ditto £650.
27000 Pineasters planted by Gov. Wilks many above 4 feet high at 2s. 6d. each, valued at £3375.
Dec. 2.—Imported Cattle from the Cape cost about 1s. 4¾d. per lb. and are inferior to Benguela Cattle which cost 9½d.
April 15, 1816.—Mr. Boys having refused to take to church the corpse of a deceased person alleging it to be a privilege for the upper classes only; is called upon for explanation,
May 19.—Mr. Boys in explanations. Complains of the superstitious habits of the place, the large concourse at every funeral to parade through the streets. Their passage up the aisle of the church round by the altar. Their anxiety to throw every piece of myrtle into the grave.
Oct. 8, 1817.—Census on 30th Sept. 1817. White Inhabitants exclusive of Civil and Military 821, Slaves 1540, Free Blacks 500, Civil and Military, Company's Establishment 820, King's Troops 1475, Families of ditto 352, Chinese 618, Lascars 24. Total 6150.
Aug. 24, 1818.—Public Meeting of Inhabitants resolved that from the 25th December 1818 all children born of Slaves be considered free.
March 25, 1819.—Inhabitants apply for permission to have a special Vestry in consequence of a paragraph in the Morning Chronicle stating that a flagitious traffic in slaves had long been carried on in St. Helena and that the merit of the late abolition was due to Mr. Boys. They state it was due to Sir Hudson Lowe and Mr. Boys had no concern in it except that he like all humane men may have been favourable to it.
Aug. 2.—Two Chinese shot on 1st August by a party of soldiers quelling a tumult. Coroner's verdict—Wilful Murder agaiust 15 persons Soldiers of the Guard.
Aug. 23 —Special Sessions.—After a patient hearing of 14 hours the soldiers were acquitted.
The Chinese had assembled in large numbers with knives and other weapons and first attacked the soldiers (who were sent to quell the tumult) with stones and glass bottles.
April 24, 1820.—The officers of the St. Helena Regt. and St. Helena Artillery and Medical Staff resolve to form a Mess similar to Regimental Messes of H.M. Service, being the first institution of the Mess.
May 4.—Death of George III. Proclamation George IV.
Sept. 18.—The New Road opened and the old one between Barren Hill and Brown's Hill through Woodlands is shut up by presentment of Grand Jury.
April 12, 1821.—Mr. Brabazon suspended for having disobeyed the order that he should go alongside each vessel approaching anchorage and direct her to her berth, resulting in one of the Company's ships having run into the Flagship H. M. St. Vigo. In consequence of which the Admiral had notified be "would fire upon any of the Company's vessels which should not be conducted to their moorings by the Master Attendant."
Letters to England, June 5, 1816.—Mr. Brook's eldest son recommended for an appointment in Bombay. Mr. Brook has given the only full account and History of an Island so interesting in general to your East India possessions and the information contained in which is so useful to every successful administration here.
Aug. 6, 1819.—A very painful occurrence which has occasioned the death of two Chinese who were fired upon by a non-comd. officers party of chiefly St. Helena Artillery. On 31st July their contentions began to threaten serious consequences. Upon the interpositions of Capt. Shortis who assembled a party of soldiers, orderlies, stablemen and workmen employed about Plantation with some military workmen from High Knoll, tranquility was assumed. The soldiers were scarcely withdrawn when a shout from one of the Chinese was followed by a number of others rushing out in a tumultuous manner. The soldiers returned and the Chinese again became tranquil.
On the following morning Capt Shortis proceeded to town for the purpose of reporting to the Governor, ordering his Sergeant to keep his party on the alert. Soon after the Chinese upwards of 100 on one side and between 200 and 300 on the other commenced fighting on which the soldiers marched down the hill. One of the Chinese parties immediately united with the soldiers The other party dispersed in various directions and whilst several of them were scrambling up the opposite hill some stones were either thrown or rolled down, one of which it is said struck a Corporal. He immediately fired his musquet—his example was followed by the rest when two Chinese were killed. The Coroner's Jury returned a verdict of murder.
March 8, 1821,—H.M.S. Redwing prevented from sailing in consequence of a surf that has precluded and still precludes all communication except by telegraph between the Shore and the Shipping. We are concerned to state that besides several persons hurt two lives it is supposed are lost. The one a woman washed off the Wharf and the other a Lascar who in the attempt to save her was so bruised that he is not expected to survive.
The Wharf has been cleared of everything moveable including a Wooden House and a Sentry Box; and even the Stone Buildings there have been and still are exposed to such danger that the Governor has withdrawn the Sea-Gate Guard, one of the Sentries belonging to which narrowly escaped drowning with the loss of his firelock. Several very serious breaches are made upon the quay and nothing but the substantial and workman-like manner in which the new part of the Wharf and the new Crane have been completed could have saved them. The sea beat over the counterscarp in Jamestown and filled the Ditch. It rushed through the Portcullis at Ruperts. The lower battery at Banks is much damaged and in short neither the remembrance of any person here nor tradition can furnish an instance of the Sea having run so high at any former time.
It is impossible at the present moment to ascertain the value or extent of the injury sustained but the destruction that has taken place in the quay which connects the two Crane Wharfs and the complete demolition in several places are likely to present great impediments to the discharge of the cargoes of the expected Store Ships.
Letter from England, Aug. 12, 1818.—The shock of an Earthquake throughout the Island for about half a minute. We are happy that no injury attended the event
May 5, 1821.—Napoleon Buonaparte died at Longwood 5th May, aged 52; was buried on 8th May and on 21st May all of the household of the late Emperor sailed for England in the store ship Camel.
July 21.—Sir Hudson Lowe departed for England, provisional Government appointed Brigadier-General Coffin to be Commander-in-Chief and to manage all military affairs. Mr. Brooke President of Council and to manage all Civil affairs—each drawing £150 monthly for table expenses in addition to salary.
Sept. 24.—The new Iron Railing to Government Garden completed at considerable expense. Drivers of Carts are therefore prohibited from leaving their Carts opposite the Garden and the Public Sales are prohibited from being held under the "Almond Tree."
£200 allowed Colonel Wright for the quarrying of stones on his land for the building at Longwood. Building of new village on N.W. of High Knoll authorized—General Coffin deciding there could be no objection to the site in a military point of view as regards defence.
July 15, 1822.—A number of Oak Trees at Plantation dying from the white worm under the bark.
Aug. 19.—Colonel Hodson as lessee of Casons and Hardings has planted the trees above the road and in 8 acres of steep hangings on the South of Casons telegraph. On 16th Sept. is allowed £369 for his improvements on surrendering the land.
Dec. 2, 1822.—Colonel Hodson while drilling the Regiment on Parade with blank cartridge, one of the cartridges fired proved to be a ball cartridge which nearly shot him. Private Justin McCarthy confessed to Serjeant Irwin that he and Vaughan had drawn lots which of the two should shoot Colonel Hodson on parade that morning. Sentenced 1000 lashes and to be drummed out of the Corps. (On this occasion Col. Hodson was fired at in a volley.)
Book Judicial Consultations, 1815-1821.—Numerous cases of slaves claiming freedom on the ground that they had been kidnapped, &c. Toby, Mr. Balcombe's slave, one of the cases. He was brought to the Island by Capt. Frazer and sold or given to Mr. Wrangham.
His claim to freedom not entertained on the ground that he had been brought to the Island prior to the date when the importation of Slaves was prohibited.
This is the Slave Toby who interested Napoleon at the Briars. Napoleon on leaving the Briars presented 20 Napoleons to Toby. [See Mrs. Abel's "Recollections of Napoleon," page 27]. Several of the Slaves claimed freedom on the ground of their having been in England, and their claim was referred to decision of the Company.
Oct 15, 1835.—Chinese Acho sentenced death for Burglary.
Messrs. Greentree and Brooke protest against any reprieve by Gov. Dallas. (Finally reprieved).
Law Letter, April 16, 1816.—This letter is specially intended to report to yr Hon. Court our proceedings in the cases of a considerable number of Slaves who have claimed their freedom in consequence of a Notification from the Bench at the last Sessions which was induced by the following circumstance:—General Buonaparte in a conversation at his own table had adverted to a tale of distress related to him by an aged individual stating his having been entrapped and carried off in his youth from his native country (Sumatra) and consigned to Slavery in this Island—and Admiral Sir George Cockburn who was present and understood from the part taken in the conversation by a gentleman, a native of the Island, that many cases of that nature really remained without redress, had the kindness to communicate to the Governor as a fit subject for further notice, the substance of the conversation above adverted to. This occurred on the day preceding the Quarterly Sessions which afforded the Governor an opportunity in a short charge to the Grand Jury to notice the subject as a prevailing rumour in a certain circle, to specify the case in question for their particular investigation and to draw their attention to all similar violations of the Law. After retiring for some time the, foreman returned that the presence of the particular Individual could not be obtained on account of illness. It will be seen that this case was afterwards investigated and the claim unanimously rejected. Other cases referred to in this letter, in some of which the claim to freedom was allowed.
June 5, 1823.—Governor Walker minutes that the Farm buildings at Longwood are in a ruinous condition and their reconstruction would be attended with great expense. Proposes therefore to appropriate "the Old dwelling House at Longwood as Farm Offices." Cannot be consigned to a more useful and necessary purpose.
Oct. 2.—Mr. R. F. Seale reports his Model of the Island on the scale of one foot to a mile 10 ft. 6 in. in length from East to West and 6 ft. 8 in. North to South. Had been offered £400 for it.
Oct. 6.—Governor considers the Model a work of very great merit. But objects to its being seen by a foreigner.
Oct. 16.—Gov. Walker suggests establishment of an Observatory at Ladder Hill in connection with the Military Institution and to give time to shipping for correcting their chronometers.
Dec. 11.—Water from Chubb's Spring 380 tuns in a day.
May 27, 1824.—Model of Island by R. F. Seale. £500 awarded. Mr. Seale requires another year to complete it and considers £500 an inadequate remuneration.
June 7.—Lieut.-Governor's House Furniture:—Dining Table and 12 China arm chairs with cushions to be given the Library. [N. B.—Still in use].
June 21.—General Walker's Minute on Introduction of Silk Worms. The Island without Commerce, Arts, or Manufactures and something of that sort needed for the increasing population. The Worms shipped from India had died, but a Chinaman had undertaken to proceed to China and obtain a supply of Worms.
June 24.—Saturday night 19th June a heavy fall of Rocks from top of Ladder Hill above the Mess Rouse killing one man. General Walker's Minute and Report of Committee. Buttresses built under other impending cliffs.
Aug. 26.—The Vestry having recommended a Tax on Free Blacks the Governor points out that they cannot recognise any distinction of Colour in legislation and that in the case of hundreds of individuals it would not be an easy matter to determine whether they ought to be classed as Whites or Blacks.
The Law recognise three classes only: The Military governed by Articles of War, Slaves by a special Code, and the rest of the Inhabitants who do not come within these two descriptions.
Sept. 13.—Governor Walker's Minute on the progress of Population:—In 1769, Total Blacks 976; in 1785, 1030; in 1803, 1208, also 331 Free Blacks. Last imported Slaves in 1789. Last 20 years Slave population nearly stationary. Free Blacks in 1810, 404; in 1820, 613; in 1824, 1066.
Population in 1823, about 4700; deaths 47.
July 21, 1824.—Napoleon's Tomb.—Board of Arbitrators award to Mr. Torbett £650 for past damage and £50 a year so long as the body may remain.
April 10, 1826.—Napoleon's Tomb.—Mr. Torbett's receipt for £1200 in full of all demands for use of Tomb so long as required.
Sept. 9, 1821, Letters to England.—General Coffin has complied with our request for a party to renew the Longwood fence. A large quantity of the stone from the old fence having been taken to build the house, for General Buonaparte.
Nov 20.—"Lower Stairs."—The cavity more serious than we at first imagined. A solid mass of masonry literally overhung its base 10 feet, so that the next violent surf would probably have affected the lower stairs total destruction. Cost of work £60. Governor Brook's original intention was prevented by the breaking in of the surf upon the work before it was completed, leaving a kind of funnel in which the sea rushes in. This can be completed for £350.
April 29, 1822.—The embarkation of the last division of the XX Regt. in the ship Orwell took place this morning.
Oct. 24, 1823.—Observatory.—It had been intended by the Governor that the studies of the Military Institution should embrace the knowledge of the Celestial bodies and that advantage should be taken of the favourable situation of the Island for Astronomical Observations. Capt. Hamilton of the ship Susan suggested that the establishment of an Observatory on a small scale at Ladder Hill is very desirable, as it would afford an opportunity of correcting Chronometers, which there is frequently great difficulty in doing. The instruments he recommends are a good transit telescope and a watch or clock that have been well tried and proved. A mural sextant might be included though he does not think it to be absolutely necessary. There can scarcely be a better situation than Ladder Hill for an Observatory and there is a building there (a tower) which at no great expence can be fitted up for the purpose.
April 24, 1827.—A long standing practice to fire upon any ship that attempted to enter the road without permission. The many years which have elapsed since the commencement of the late War may have obliterated from the memory of strangers and the present generation of Inhabitants that the above order was adhered to in Peace as well as in War and the removal of the restrictions incident to the residence of Napoleon Buonaparte may have given rise to an idea that the order in question have ceased to be in force. That the true state of the case is not universally known amongst the shipping is proved by vessels sometimes holding their course towards the anchorage until a shot from the Easternmost Battery is fired upon them. We suggest that the existence of the old standing Regulation should be advertized in the different Gazettes in Europe.
July 6, 1827.—The Briars purchased in England by the Company had been handed over by Mr. Baker for a Silkworm Establishment and for Mulberry Trees.
Jan. 1, 1828.—Emancipation Report on the value of slaves. All to be liberated in five years by loans from the Company.
Feb. 15.—Bye Laws.—Mr. Brooke has made a compilation from the Old Records.
April 14.—Governor Walker and his family take their passage in the Atlas. Brooke, Greentree and Blenkins the provisional Government and Command of Troops devolving on Lt.-Colonel Wright as Senior Officer until the arrival of Governor Dallas.
Sept. 1.—With the view of saving the heavy labour and expense of carriage along the zigzag between Jamestown and Ladder Hill the Governor (Dallas) proposed the construction of an Inclined Plane upon the principle of several which have been beneficially adopted at Bridgenorth and Monmouth of 45° of Elevation, 3° more than Ladder Hill and many other parts of England and Wales.
Jan 3, 1827.—Letters from England.—Model of the Island placed at Addiscombe. Mr. Seale allowed another £500 (£1000 in all).
June 13.—The Briars purchased from Messrs. Burnie for £6000 and the Brewery for £3000.
Dec. 5.—Brigadier General Dallas retired from Madras Army appointed Governor.
Jan. 14, 1829.—Inclined Plane—(Ladder to Ladder Hill.) £200 allowed in aid of the work.
Aug. 26, 1827—Very heavy surf higher than ever known in Sandy Bay and all around the Island except between Banks' and Lemon Valley from 24th to 26th Aug. Wind changed on 24th at 8 a m. from S.E. to S.W. until 26th at 6 p.m. Lightning to South on 10th Aug. 3 to 4 a.m., also on 26th 3 to 5 a.m., attended with heavy rain.
Librarian allowed 6d. a day, having books of the E. I. Company to a considerable value under his charge.
Feb. 13, 1828.—Mr. Prince applies to cover over the Run by the Bazaar. Mr. R. Torbett objects. States that Water Spouts frequently break over the Island, that one about sixty years ago did happen—which did choke the Water Course at the Bridge and the Flood broke over with great violence into the Main Street which did much injury.
March 31.—Large fall of Rocks opposite the Botanical Garden. A woman killed by a stone 91 lbs. weight in the street opposite Serjt. Bell's house on 25th March.
May 1.—General Dallas considers the position of the Grand Magazine in Town quite unsuitable and orders its removal to Ladder Hill.
June 23.—Mr. Charlton drowned on Friday 20th June.
Mr. James Boys from Madras appointed to act provisionally during Mr. R. Boys absence.
July 13, 1829.—Spar Shed or Crane on the Wharf granted to Messrs. Solomon and others.
July 29.—The Agricultural Society wish to hold their meetings for business after dinner. Govt. have no objection to after dinner discussions but insist that no subject should be decided on except before dinner.
July 23.—Spar Shed may be resumed for public purposes paying the occupants the expense incurred by them for excavation.
March 29, 1830.—H.M. Sybille Commodore Collier, arrived and detained in quarantine for Coast fever and refused pratique. Commodore Collier wishing to proceed to South for benefit of his sick request the St. Helena schooner may go into Sierra Leone and deliver his despatches for the Coast Squadron.
Letters to England—March 29, 1830.—H.M. Sybille Commodore Collier arrived on the 12th inst. with fever on board and kept in strict quarantine. Commodore wanted Longwood, which was refused and we offered Lemon Valley which he refused. The Commodore had appointed his Squadron to meet him at Sierra Leone by the first week in April, but from fresh cases of fever the Surgeon recommended the Sybille should proceed Southward to a colder climate.
To avoid the detention and exposure of other vessels waiting at Sierra Leone he requested that the St. Helena schooner under orders for home should make a deviation in her passage to convey a letter to Sierra Leone ordering the Squadron to join him at Ascension which was compiled with.
Mr. Charlett acting 2nd Mate St. Helena schooner quits the vessel upon her departure.
Assistant Surgeon Waddell from increasing disease in his eyes allowed to go for England in the schooner.
June 28, 1830.—St. Helena schooner taken by Pirates and her Commander, Mate, and Dr. Waddell and several of her crew murdered. It must however be lamented that Captain Harrison was so highly imprudent as to quit the schooner at the desire of the commander of so suspicious a looking vessel as the Pirate is represented, thus also weakening his own crew by abstracting from it the four men who rowed him on board—but still it appears extraordinary that the 16 remaining persons should have tamely suffered nine men from the Pirate to proceed unresisted in their murderous acts. Mr. Charlett, late acting 2nd Mate, having been examined by us regarding the disposition of the crew stated that discontent had at times prevailed amongst them inconsequence of the watch being relieved at 7 bells a.m. instead of 8 and the forenoon watch being extended to ½ past 12. He also stated that some of the men murmured at the vessel being hurried away from St. Helena sooner than was expected and that he overheard one man say "he wished they might fall in with a Pirate, that Pirates would not hurt them (meaning the Seamen), that the vessel indeed might be plundered but that it was the officers only who had danger to apprehend." Mr. Charlett however observed that be considered the words merely as grumbling and uttered without any serious intentions. This man went by the name of Martin and had not long joined the schooner and it is understood that he had formerly been taken by a Pirate. A seaman and also Lieut. Toby of the Marines appeared to recognize him on arrival at Sierra Leone as a man they had somewhere seen previously, but he affected not to know them. Now although these circumstances are in themselves insufficient to contradict the account given by the Carpenter (Gillies) who is well spoken of, yet they are enough to excite suspicion that the real truth of the case has not yet come to light.
June 21.—St. Helena schooner captured by Pirates and her crew massacred. On 17th June H.M.S. Ariadne arrived from Sierra Leone bringing following intelligence:—
Capt. Gordon H.M.S. Athol at Sierra Leone, reports the St. Helena schooner arrived at Sierra Leone 2nd May 1830. Had left St. Helena on 31st March, was boarded on 6th April at 10 a.m. in lat. 1 South, Long. 9 West by a Felucca under French colours with a crew of 40 to 50 men of all nations. Sent for Capt. Harrison and his papers and detained him sometime on board the Felucca leaving six of their men on board of the schooner with arms concealed in the boat. The stranger then proceeded to violence with drawn knives, forcing the crew below for the purpose of Plundering the vessel of her cargo, demanding with threats to know where the money was concealed. Capt. Harrison and Dr. Waddell were the first to suffer being lashed back to back and thrown overboard. Seven more men and four Africans shared the same fate. The carpenter and steward escaped by surrendering their money and concealing themselves in the hold. They then parted company and in one hour returned and cut away the masts and attempted to scuttle the vessel, but not succeeding kept sailing round the vessel and firing shots at her for some time and at 6 o'clock left her entirely. The remainder of the crew, viz. the carpenter and five men who had been concealed below, saved the vessel and took her into Sierra Leone.
The Felucca from the description given of her, was well known to the ships of the squadron—and as she had no idea the St. Helena would escape it was hoped the Felucca would proceed to the Coast and be captured by the ships which were sent in search of her. The Felucca had been boarded on 5th Dec. 1829 by Commodore Collier and was then described in the Sybille's Boarding Book as the Daspegado, Don Antonio Constanti master, Spanish colours, from Barcelona and belonging to Barcelona bound to St. Thomas, 50 tons, 1 gun, 34 crew. Has been 12 months out and no cargo.
The Primrose sent immediately in search of the Felucca. The Felucca's shots picked out of the schooner's side were 9 pounders. Pirate afterwards captured.
Jan. 3, 1831.—The Inclined Plane in use by all the Public more than a year without a single charge.
Sept. 22.—Churchwardens informed that Insane persons could not be permanently retained in Hospital. As a temporary measure they could be accommodated in the prison at Sandy Bay until provision could be made for them by the Parish.
Nov. 3.—Proposals for a new line of road to the Country from Castle path passing under High Knoll, coming out somewhere near the Country School—length 4100 yards, perpendicular rise 1685 feet, rise in 100 feet 13 feet 8 inches. Plan and section of the road given.
Nov. 10.—Guinea grass seed sent originally by Court of Directors 14th January 1789, said then to be a very rare plant and the only one in England. Mr. Beale urges its superiority and recommends its use for public forage. Govt. are not aware of its superiority to forage and allude to a withdrawal of Mr. Beale's tender. Mr. Beale comments upon the allusion—which be says he shall content himself "with being obliged to brook."
Nov. 17 —Mr. Blakes comments upon a denial that he had been ordered to give up a Bond—sends copy of the order remarking if that be not an order I can only lament my ignorance and the loss of that valuable time I have so unprofitably spent in learning the rudiments of the English language.
Jan. 24, 1832.—Plantation House.—General Dallas represents it as unhealthy from its overgrowth of trees.
April 23.—Proposal to devote £300 Parish Funds to a Chapel at Hutt's Gate. Negatived in Vestry by 12 to 7.
July 9.——Slaves 645 valued at £28062 to be emancipated in 5 years, one-fifth annually.
Aug. 6.—Govt. object to receive Mrs. Watson as a lunatic at the Hospital, but offer the Parish the ground of the Union Brewery for a Poor House.
Nov. 1.—Inclined Plane bought from Proprietors for £882 10/., 353 shares.
Feb. 11, 1833.—Order to detain all Dutch merchant ships—question as to intention, to detain all vessels of War.
June 6.—Whale Fishery. £1000 subscribed for establishing.
Aug. 6.—Church Tower in Town, dangerous cracks in it and repairs ordered.
Oct. 10.—Mrs. Harper allowed £150 for a public road and Water Course through her land to Francis Plain.
April 21, 1834.—Memorial from the Civil Servants relating to the expected loss of office on the transfer of the Island.
April 23.—Yesterday a Proclamation was published respecting the transfer of the Island to the Crown which is posted in the Proclamation Book. This morning at daylight the Royal Standard was hoisted at Ladder Hill and at 12 o'clock a Royal Salute was fired from Munden's Battery.
May 29.—Wine Licences—four allowed. Duty of 10d. a gallon on imports of Cape Wine.
July 22, 1835.—Church Steeple in danger of falling and ordered to be taken down.
Nov. 30.—Unusually high surf on 29th Nov. which knocked in the Coal Yard gate and destroyed 40 feet of the Glacis Wall.
Letters from England, January 14, 1829.—Silk.—52 lbs. received and sold at prices from 9s. 9d to 18s. 6d. per lb. Silk much admired and the Cocoons must have been of an excellent description.
Dec. 31.—Articles used at Plantation have amounted to no less than 10512 in 13 years. Inventory ordered annually.
Jan. 19.—The Quarantine of H.M.S. Sybille an indispensable precaution. Approve of sending St. Helena schooner to Sierra Leone. Regret the murder of the Captain and others by Pirates. £1176 of Copper money was on board. The schooner had been detained and taken to Lisbon by a Portuguese Frigate. We have claimed to be reimbursed for the detention by the Govt. of Portugal.
Jan. 26, 1832.—Lieut. Johnson's Astronomical Observations highly creditable to him.
Pump sent out for the Well sunk 80 feet deep in Ruperts.
Slavery to be abolished as soon as possible. 869 Slaves valued £37639. Since 19th December 1826 124 Slaves had been freed for £5550 of which upwards of £1300 had been repaid. Number of Slaves by return to 30th Sept. 1830—272 men, 160 women, 107 boys, 88 girls; Total 627. Slaves to be divided into classes and one-fifth to be liberated every year. Purchase money to be considered as a Loan to the Slave.
Inclined Plane commenced. £300 already paid, and Plane to be taken on the Company's account on further payment of £850.
Feb. 15, 1833.—New Road round the East face of High Knoll cannot be sanctioned in the present state of Indian finances.
Sept. 4.—Act of Parliament providing Clause III. That the Island and all property will be vested in His Majesty from 22nd April 1834.
Jan. 23 .—Lieut. Johnson during absence to enable him to pursue the study of Astronomy allowed £300 in addition to Furlough pay.
April 29.—The Court have determined not to interfere with the private shippers of Stores by sending any further supplies to the Island.
Letters to England, July 8, 1830—Mutinous conduct on board the Farguharson and Inglis. Military party sent off. Ladder Hill and Mundens manned, Governor proceeds on board and ten men are flogged.
July 22, 1831.—The Theatre destroyed by fire on Friday morning last 15th July.
Oct. 13.—Mrs. Harper recommended for £130 for damage to her property by the Water Course and thoroughfare to Francis Plain. A cart road may be cut to the Plain without further remuneration.
June 7, 1832.—General distress among the landed Proprietors dating chiefly from the sudden change of affairs consequent on the demise of Buonaparte. Estates encumbered by loans from the Company and Public Institutions.
July 14.—Slave Committee report on Valuation:—