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Vancouver and his great voyage : the story of a Norfolk sailor, Captian Geo. Vancouver, R.N., 1757-1798 Anderson, G. H. 1923

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The Story of a Norfolk Sailor, 
Thew & Son, King's Lynn, Printers to His Majesty the King.      Vancouver! in whose veins were blent
Twin strains of that old Viking blood,
Holland's and England's, which had sent
Its farers forth on each full flood
Of sea-search, Life as liefly lent
To wrath as brotherhood :
Once I Cook's brave middy," trained with ear
And eye alert, and toughened then
In Rodney's fight: with Gardner near
He watched, nor recked (O Englishmen,
Have ye forgot ?)—unknowing fear-
Where foes should smite, or when !
O breed of Britain's Ocean-Kings,
Through that long century's war-romance
Two Empires grappled, as in "rings"
Of sea-sway : while, in coward trance,
Half Europe gazed !   Urania sings
I Ye broke proud Bourbon France,
"And pushed forth Britain's battle-line
Till, grappling dire Napoleon's star,
Pale Nelson's 'scutcheon could outshine
The whole world's blazoned ' fields ' of war,
Making all-glorious, half-divine,
The Hell of Trafalgar ! " O rare sea-rovers, handing down
To us the shot-torn flag of Blake,
And gathering always new renown,
Whatever keel-cleft path ye take,
Lead, and we follow—doom or crown ! —
We, youngest sons of Drake !
Ah, but ye waged a nobler fight,
'Gainst slave-hood, ignorance, rapine, wrong ;
Into dark caves ye flung Hope's light:
To People's moaning, " Lord, how long ?'
Ye seemed God's angels in mailed might,
And in your pity strong !
So—sacred trust our coasts shall keep !—
Came shrewd Vancouver, some loved name
Of England's great ones graving deep
On crag and cape : words edged with flame
Whose gleam may rouse us from the sleep
Of dotard ease or shame.
Staunch human-hearted mariner,
Unbaffled, wakeful, unafraid,—
Cleaving, through sea-tides dark or fair,
Unhindered avenues of trade,—
Bv such keen eye and tireless care
Was world-wide England made !
From "At Vancouver's Well," by Dr. Laurence Rentoul. of Melbourne University,
published by Macmillan & Co., London.
By permission of the Author. PREFACE.
The requests of several of my friends for this reprint
encourage me to hope that it may be worth issuing.
I have included a few illustrations and a memorandum
as to the navigator's birthplace.
By the kindness of Mr. S. S. Burlingham, who allowed
me to peruse the Friends' Title Deeds, I think I have been
able to settle definitely the exact position of the Vancouver house. This, and tracing the descent of Bridget
Berners from the ancient Norfolk Kerville family as well
as from the Grenvilles of Cornwall and Devon, have given
me great pleasure.
The  two illustrations  of  Wiggenhall   Church  are  from
blocks   kindly   lent    me    by    the    Norfolk    and    Norwich
Archaeological Association.
G. H. A.  Carved Seats in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Wiggenhall,
shewing the Kerville Arms on one of them.    (See Chap. I.) Kerville Tomb in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Wiggenhall.
The property in New Conduit Street, Lynn, was conveyed
in 1755 to Philip Case and Samuel White in trust for Sarah
Vancouver and her son John, the former of whom was to
receive an annuity of £16 out of the estate and the latter to
take an\ balance.
In 1755 John Vancouver was living in Tower Street. The
next year he was rated for the house in New Conduit Street,
and he continued there until his death in 1773.
George was born 22nd June, 1757.
In 1774 Charles Turner, the acting Trustee under John
Vancouvers will, sold the property to Richard Raven, who
retained the part on which Mr. Potter's house was afterwards
erected, and sold off the remainder to the Quakers and others.
The property purchased by the Vancouvers comprised :—
(1) A capital messuage with the buildings, stable, yard,
gardens and appurtenances abutting on the street in
part, and the messuage next mentioned in other part
towards the South.
(2) A messuage abutting North on the capital messuage,
South on the street, East on the passage leading from
the street to the capital messuage, and West on the
messuage next mentioned.
(3) A messuage West of the last described messuage.  Items 2 and 3 are clearly the present Labour Exchange.
The portions of the property sold to the Quakers were :—
(a) So much of the capital messuage extending northward of the kitchen lately occupied by John
Vancouver, which kitchen and rooms over were then
added to the messuage No. 2 above. The capital
messuage projected about two feet more in the front
eastward than the said kitchen.
(6) A yard or garden late in the occupation of John
Vancouver, north-westward of the capital messuage.
(c) That part of the courtyard in the front eastward of
the capital messuage, together with the passage or
gateway leading thereto from New Conduit Street, to
be divided by a wall from the part now Mr. Potter's.
Another wall was to be built in a circular form from
the north-east corner of the yard of No. 2 above to
the north-east corner of the said kitchen.
Richard Raven reserved the right to build one or more
room or rooms over the gateway leading out of the street
into the courtyard, which accounts for Mr. Potter's house
extending over the gateway.
It seems quite clear from the above that John Vancouver's
house stood on the site of the Friends' Meeting House, and
that the northernmost room of the Labour Exchange which
abuts on the Meeting House was the kitchen of the house.
The rooms north of the Meeting House are probably a part
of the capital messuage.   THE  STOBY  OF A NORFOLK  SAILOR.
1757—1775.      Early Mf-e   and   first
voyage with Cook.
In the history of navigation during
the eighteenth century the fame of
Captain Cook almost obscures the
achievements of the many other daring navigators of that time. The
etory of Cook's wonderful career,—
his humble birth, his flight from the
uncongenial village shop, the years
of obscure drudgery in a coasting
sihip, the services rendered under circumstances of great danger in connection with the conquest of Quebec,
hi_ voyage of as great renown as any
in the history of the world and, finally, the tragic end—is familiar to
most of us. Cook was forty years of
age when, in 1768, he started on the-
first of hi© three famous voyages
which was undertaken for the purpose
of making an observation of the
transit of Venus. On this voyage
(completed in 1771), parts of the
coast of New Zealand and Australia
were explored and the Society and
other islands were discovered. The
second voyage (1772-1775) was for the
discovery of "Terra Australis Incognita,"   the greafc southern continent which for two hundred years had
been the dream of navigators and
which had been marked in anticipation on many an old map.
On board Cook'si ship, the " Resolution," on this second voyage was a
lad of fourteen who was destined to
continue the work of the great navigator. This lad, George Vancouver,
was born at King's Lynn, his father,
John Jaspar Vancouver, being of
Dutch descent.
The Vancouvers may have been
among the many Dutchmen who
came over to assist in the engineering works connected with the drainage of the Fens, but it is more probable that they were refugees from
the 16th century persecutions in the
Netherlands. George in th© journal
of his great voyage says he named
"Point Couverden" after the seat of
his ancestors. Couverden or Coever-
den is the name of a town in North
Sarah Vancouver, the widowed
mother of John Jaspar and the grandmother of George, was rated in Lynn
as a householder up to 1759. In 1752
and 1755 she occupied the fifth tenement from the White Hart Inn and
next to a larger house occupied by Dr.
Lidderdale in St. James' Street. Her
house was therefore probably next to
the present Conservative Club. In
1758 she was rated in Stonegate Ward.
She died in 1769. John Jaspar Vancouver was married to Bridget Ber-
ners, of Lynn, on 22nd June, 1749,
in the church of All Saints', South
Lynn. Although nothing is known of
John Jaspar Vancouver's ancestry,
that of his wife is particularly interesting. Five miles v_v the River Ouse
from Lynn Haven, in the parish of
Wiggenhall St. Mary the Virgin, is
a mansion known as St. Mary's Hall,
which includes a part of the old
Manor House of the Kerville family, who for five hundred years
(Stephen to James I.) were Lords of
the Manor. The Kervilles, who were
allied by marriage to many of the
principal local families, also owned
estates  in several  neighbouring par- ishes, and when Blomefield's History
of the County was written their arms
(Gules, a chevron or, between three
leopards' faces argent) were to be seen
in the windows of various churches
in the district. Edmund Kerville, in
the 14th century, married a daughter
of Sir John Tilney, The wi.e of his
grandson, Thomas Kerville, was a
daughter and co-heir of Gilbert
Haultoft, Baron of the Exchequer,
and their grandson Humphrey married Anne, daughter of Jeffrey Cobbe,
the Squire of Sandringham. Thomas,
the son of the last-named Humphrey,
married Alice, daughter of Sir Henry
Bedingfeld, of Oxburgh, a supporter
of Queen Mary, Governor of the
Tower, and the "jaylor" of the
Princess, afterwards Queen, Elizabeth. Thomas Kerville also espoused
the cause of Queen Mary and he, with
two others, was appointed to enter
Wzzisbech Castle and hold the same
for the Queen's use. Henry Kerville
(the son of Thomas), who married
Winefred, daughter of Sir Anthony
Thorold, Knight, was a Catholic, and
his name appears among the principal
Recusants in Norfolk. In 1586 he
agreed to pay <£50 per annum during
the time he should not go to church,
this being the highest amount in the
list. His son, Sir Henry Kerville,the
last of the name to own the Manor,
married Mary, daughter of Francis
Plowden. He also was devoted to
the ancient faith, and being accused
of holding Papist meetings at his
house, was impri-soned for some time.
The parish church, which- stands
quite near the Manor House, contains
memorials of the Kervilles in their
glory and decay. For it®- old oaken
benches with their richly carved
ends, considered some of the finest
of their kind in the kingdom, we are
probably indebted to the pious generosity of some of the Kervilles,
whose arms can be seen on one of the
seats. * On the floor of the south
aisle is a small marble slab in which
is set a heart of brass with an inscription in memory of Sir Robert
Kerville, who died in the 15th century, while on a mission abroad, and whose heart, enclosed in an iron
casket, was brought home by a monk
for burial in the family chapel. Near
this is an elaborate monument which
tells in stone the story of the end
of this knightly family. Sir Henry
Kerville, who died in 1624, is shown
lying beside bis wife. Beneath are
the effigies of Gervase the little heir,
in swaddling clothes, who died in infancy, and of Mary, his sister, the
last of the Kervilles, who died at the
age of four, a year after her father's
death. After Sir Henry's death, the
estate appears to have been held for
a short time by the Cobbes of Sand-
ringham, probably as trustees. In
the 21st of Charles I. (1645-6), however, it was delivered to> Gregory
Gawsell, a descendent of Thomas
Gawsell, of Watlington, and Catherine Kerville, sister of th» Humphrey
Kerville, who married Anne Cobbe.
The Gawsells held considerable estates
in Norfolk in the time of Edward
IV. Gregory Gawsell was a supporter
of the Commonwealth, being one of
the Treasurers of the Eastern Association. He was Sheriff in 1649, and
died childless in 1656. Elizabeth
Gawsell, his sister, had married
Arthur Berners, of Finchingfield,
Essex, and their son Hatton Berners
succeeded to the St. Mary's estate on
the death of his uncle, Gregory
The Berners familv was an important one in Essex, and on the south
side of the parish church .at Finchingfield their Chantry chapel still
contains an altar tomb with brass
effigies, clad in heraldic dresses, of
John Berners and his wife, 1523.
Hatton Berners, son of the aforesaid
Hatton and grandson of Arthur, had
for his wife Bridget, described on a
tombstone in St. Mary's church as
the "only sister of Sir Simon Leach
of Devonshire, Knight of the Bath."
A more illustrious relationship than
this might have been claimed, for
the mother of Mrs. Hatton Berners
and of Sir Simon Leach was Lady
Bridget, daughter of Sir Bevil Granville, one of the boldest and most
successful   of   the   Cavalier   leaders- Sir Bevil, on the first outbreak of
the Civil War, joined the Royal
Standard and, marching into Cornwall, rescued the whole county from
the Parliament, attacked the partisans
of the Commons and routed them at
Bodmin, Launceston and Stratton.
His last and most brilliant action
was at Lansdowne Hill, near Bath,
where he fell in the hour of victory,
5th July, 1643. A monument was
erected on the spot recording his
loyalty, his valour and his death.
At the moment he was slain he had
the patent for the Earldom of Bath
in his pocket, with a letter from
King Charles I. acknowledging his
services. Bis eldest son took up the
title at the Restoration, and his
daughters were allowed to rank as
Earl's daughters. A still more famous
ancestor was Sir Bevil's grandfather,
Sir Richard Grenville, "the pride of
North Devon," who figure, largely in
Kingsley's | Westward Ho!" and the
story of whose heroic fight in the
" Revenge," " at Flores in the Azores,"
has been immortalised by Tennyson
in the well-known ballad ' "which,
while the sea endures, the sea-wolves
of England will love to hear."
The Berners and Leach families
were both attached to the Royalist
cause. Hatton Berners, at an attempt
to restore Charles II. in 1659, was
ordered to find three horses for Col.
Gurdon's troop, and Simon Leach
wag knighted at the Coronation of
Charles II. on 23rd April, 1661. An
entry in the Register of St. Mary's
church recozrds the death of Mrs.
Berners in these words: "Mdam
Bridgett Berners, wife of Hatton
Berners, Esq., dyd at St. Mary's Hall
Jan. 15th at 5 o th clock in the evening and was buryd at St. Mary's,
Jann.   the 18th,   1705."
Hatton Berners was High Sheriff
of Norfolk in 1667. He died in 1713,
and was followed by his son Gregory,
who, dying in 1715, was succeeded in
the estate by William Berners, another son of Hatton. William married Jane Hotchins, of Lynn, and by
her   had    several    children,    one of whom was Bridget Berners, who became the wife of John Vancouver.
In the parish register at St. Mary's
is the following entry: " Bridget ye
daur. of Will. Berners and Jane Kis
wife bap. Aug. 24, 1715." William
Berners, described as "of Lynn," was
Sheriff in 1717. He died in 1727, and
his wife in 1725. Soon after his death
the estate had to be sold to pay his
debts, and apparently the _amily
moved into Lynn. From the union
of John Vancouver and his wife
Bridget there were six children, viz.:
Bridget, baptised 24th April, 1751;
Sarah, baptised 16 th April, 1752;
Mary, baptised 13th January, 1753;
Charles and John, baptised 11th. Nov.
ember, 1756; George, baptised 16th
March, 1761. The baptism of the
eldest child, Bridget, took place at
All Saints' church, where her parents
had been married, and this suggests
that they then lived in South Lynn.
All the other children were baptised
in the parish church of St. Margaret.
In the ca&e of George, the youngest
child, the Vicar, Dr. Charles Bagge,
has, in addition to the date of the
ceremony, specially recorded that of
his birth, 22nd June, 1757, probably
because nearly four years had intervened between the birth and the
For about twenty-ttwo years from
February, 1748, John Jasper Vancouver held the office of Deputy Collector of Customs, a position of some
responsibility when Lynn ranked as
one of the chief ports of the kingdom. The report of the Commissioners for auditing the public accounts
in 1784 shows that the annual duties
at Lynn exceeded those of all other
ports except London, Bristol, Liverpool and Hull. Many of the mansions of the Lynn merchants of the
period remain and give some idea
of the princely style in which' they
lived. The Deputy Collector's appointment was not from the Crown,
but from the Customer and Collector,
a "patentee," whose office was a
sinecure (worth it is said =61,200 a
year), all the duties being discharged by his deputy. The Customer and
Collector for whom John  Vancouver
first acted was Charles Turner, one
of a powerful local family who dominated the town for about a hundred
years, their names occurring over
and over again in the lists of its
Mayors and Parliamentary Representatives. They were allied by marriage to the Walpoles of Houghton,,
an earlier Charles Turner, who was
created a Baronet in 1727, having
married Mary Walpole, the sister of
Sir Robert Walpole, the great Prime
Minister (who himself represented
the town in Parliament for forty
years), and Horatio Nelson* was a
great-grandchild of this marriage.
Charles Turner, the Collector, was a
second cousin of Sir John Turner,
the third Baronet, and he was succeeded in the office by a son-in-law of
Sir John, Robert Hales, under whom
John Jasper Vancouver still acted as
deputy. John Vancouver also held
for many years an important appointment under the Lynn Corporation, in whose Minute Book, under
date 3rd Feb., 1748, it is recorded that
" This day John Vancouver, Gentle-
man, is by the Deputy Mayor, Aldermen and Common Council appointed
Collector of the Town Dues until
Michaelmas next." The town dues
were charges' payable to the Corporation as the Harbour Authority, and
it was usual for the Collector of Customs to be appointed to the office
of Collector of these dues "as from
its peculiar relation to shipping he
alone could collect them with advantage to the Corporation funds." Two
sureties had to be found for a five
hundred pound bond with the Corporation, and Charles Turner was
one of them. This appointment was
renewed annually over twenty times.
In 1754 John Vancouver's mother,
Sarah Vancouver, widow, was accepted as one of the sureties. In 1759-60
John Vancouver and another "substantial burgess" were chosen to collect the Church rate in one of the
wards of the town, and in 1750 he
and Charles   Turner were  appointed
W^ Surveyors of Highways in the parish
■of South Lynn.
At the Parliamentary elections in
the Borough there must have been
•some doings which would shock present day politicians. Although there
were only about three hundred voters,
an election in 1746 is said to have
•cost Sir John Turner and one of the
Walpoles .£4,000, and on another, in
1767, no less than .£12,000 was spent
by the three candidates. In these
contests "election squibs" played an
important part, and John Vancouver's connection with the Turners
brought him under notice in some of
these effusions. In one he is referred to as " Vancouver, That little
vagary-harlequino all over," and in
another we have the following reference:
" No   more   that   grating    sound   to
Turner's ears,
The  name of Molineux, alarm   our
No  longer wanted in  the streets to
Sir John's great Bulwark strut, the
great Collector;
While   little   Van his   happy stazrs
shall bless,
And   not   one soul shall wish   him
to be   less."
In a county election in 1768 John
Vancouver voted for the Tory candidates, de Grey and Wodehouse,
against Coke  and. Astley, Whigs.
At the time of George's birth the
Vancouvers were living in a house
on the north side of Fincham, otherwise New Conduit, street. The
^churchwardens' books show that John
Vancouver from 1752 to 1755 lived in
Tower street. In 1755 he and his
mother purchased the house in New
Conduit Street and he was rated
for it in 1756 and 1757, his
name appearing for the fourth house
from the "King's Head" (until -recently the George Inn, New Conduit
Street), his next-door neighbour being Robert Underwood, who was Town
Clerk from 1729 to 1767. New Conduit street   has    perhaps   undergone more alteration than any of the Lynn
streets, for the houses on the south
side of it were completely demolished
about 1865, and their sites thrown
into the roadway. Before this it
must have resembled the very narrow
Sedgeford Lane. The Vancouver
house stood west of the present Congregational chapel. Tne Friends
meeting, house and rooms and part
of the Labour Exchange stand on its
site, the older parts of the Friends'
buildings being adapted from portions of John Vancouver's "capital
messuage." The existing ancient
Gothic doorway opened into a passage which led to a court yard on
the east or front of the house.
Mr. F. Potter's house is built
on part of the property, which included a fair sized garden or orchard. The two previous occupiers-
had been Dr. Geo. Hepburn and Dr.
Joseph Taylor. It is very probable
that the ancient doorway was the
entrance to the mansion of an old
time merchant of Lynn, John de
Burghard, Mayor 1326, 1332 and 1337,
whose Will is to be found in the Red
Register. The street was formerly
known as Burghard's Lane.
We know nothing of George Vancouver's boyhood. He would, most
likely, be sent to the Grammar School
then conducted in the upper part of
the Charnel chapel, adjoining the
parish church, where Eugene Aram's
arrest must have been witnessed by
some of the contemporaries of the
Vancouver boys.
Nearly all the inhabitants of the
town were dependent on or connected
in some way with the shipping trade,
and the boys must have heard much
of the life of the sea. Lynn sailors
helped in good numbers to make up
the crews of the warships. Many
were pressed men, and there would
be frequent calls by naval vessels to
receive some of these unfortunates.
In 1758 it is recorded that "this
year there was 18d. in the pound
collected every quarter for the Poor
Rates occasioned by the number of
seamen there were impressed for the
Navy whose familiies had relief from the parish." One of the ships of the
Royal Navy at this time bore the
name of "Lynn." A local diarist
notes in 1759 that the guns of St.
Ann's Fort were fired on October 19th
for the conquest of Quebec.
The Lynn merchant vessels traded
to all parts, the imports of coal and
wine being particularly large, and a
few were engaged in the whale fishery. Barges took a large proportion
of the imports up the river into no
less than eight different counties, and
returned laden with corn for export.
The clang of the workmen's tools
in the yards where vessels were built
and 'repaired would be familiar sounds
in the town.
Perhaps, later in life when he was
brought into controversy with the
Spaniards, <xeorge might remember
how in 1762 "His Majesty's declaration of war against the King of Spain
was publiekly read at the Hall door
and Market Cross, upon which occasion the Mayor and Aldermen appeared in their scarlet, and the Common Council in their usual formalities, attended by the sword and
maces, and the other Corporation
officers, with drums, etc."
In 1768 the Vancouver children lost
their mother, and five days after
George's eleventh birthday she was
buried at Wiggenhall St. Mary. In
the Register of burials we have this
entry: "Bridget, wife of J. Vancouver, Gent., June 27, 1768." She
was probably the last representative
of the Kerville, Gawsell and Berners
families to be buried at St. Mary's.
Dr. Burney, the eminent musician,
lived from 1751 to 1760 in Lynn, where
in 1752 his famous daughter, Fanny
Burney, was born, and afterwards
through his second marriage with a
Lynn lady his connection with the
town was continued. His son, James
Burney,bozrn 1750 (afterwards rear-admiral) was second lieutenant on board
the "Adventure," one of the two ships
taken by Capt. Cook on his second
voyage of discovery. In Dr. Burney'e
memoirs we are told how it was on his recommendation that the Earl of
Sandwich, first Lord of the Admiralty,
whom he met at Houghton Hall, entrusted the preparation of the history
of Cook's first voyage to Dr. Hawkes-
worth, and later on when Dr. Burney
was invited to Hinchingbrooke, Lord
Sandwich's seat, he obtained the appointment of his son in one of Cook's
ships. It has been suggested that a
friendship between - the Burney and
Vancouver families led to George Vancouver being attached to the expedition. Captain Cook's commission for
this voyage was dated Nov. 28th,1771,
at which time George Vancouver
would be just ovct fourteen years of
age. The ships sailed from Deptford
9th April, 1772, but did mot finally get
away from Plymouth Sound till 13th
July. George Vancouver was rated as
an able seaman, but was placed on the
quarter-deck as a junior officer. TO
the boy, just fresh from school, this
voyage must have been a wonderful
experience, crowded, as it was, with
a variety of delights and hardships.
The ships were not chosen for speed
or comfort. They were, in fact,
Whitby-bailt vessels of the collier
type, similar to those in which Cook
had traded along the English coast so
many years. The "Resolution," 462
tons burden, carried 112 men, and the
"Adventure," 336 tons, had a crew of
81. A large number of animals and
fowls were also taken, with sufficient
provisions for an extended voyage. It
will be easily seen that the men's accommodation could not be luxurious.
The outward journey from Plymouth
to Table Bay occupied 109 days. After
leaving the Cape the greatest care
was taken to husband the stock of
fresh water, and everybody had to
wash in salt water. Three times,dur-
ing the months of December and January in 1772-3, 1773-4 audi 1774-5, search
was. made for the great southern continent, until in each case the way
was blocked by walls of ice in the
Antarctic Sea. It is related that on
one occasion when Cook was preparing
to tack, in 72 degrees latitude, young
Vancouver went to the end of the
ship's bowsprit, and that he used af- terwards to say he had been nearer
the South Pole than any other man.
The hardships and difficulties experienced were considerable. We read of
the ships sailing for six weeks among
icebergs, and the naturalist attached
to the expedition speaks of the "dull
hours, days and months passed in this
desolate part of the world." He says
they were almost perpetually wrapped
in thick fogs, beaten with showers
of rain, sleet, hail and snow, surrounded by innumerable islands of
ice, against which they daily ran the
risk of being shipwrecked, and forced
to live upon salt provisions. The
rigging was constantly encrusted with
ice, which cut the hand§ of those who
were obliged to touch it. Fresh water
had to be collected in lumps of ice
floating on the sea when the cold
and the saline element alternately
numbed and scarified the sailors'
hands. No wonder that the men were
glad when the Captain had to abandon
the quest and steer northward again
for New Zealand, Otaheite and the
other delightful islands of the Pacific.
The intervals between these excursions
into the realms of ice were occupied
in surveying the coasts of the previously discovered islands and cruising
about in search of others. At the
end of the third attempt to find a
southern continent the globe had
been completely circumnavigated in
or near the Antarctic circle and the
southern ocean had been traversed
in all directions. The great object
sought, however, could not be found.
When the ships arrived at Spithead
on 30th July, 1775, after an absence
of three years 16 days, they had
sailed over a greater space of sea
than any ship ever did before, their
tracks forming more than thrice the
circumference  of   the  globe.
While George Vancouver was so
far away from his native town enduring the hardships of an Antarctic
summer, in January, 1773, his father
had died. There is an entry in the
St. Margaret's churchwardens' accounts under the date 12th January,
1773, of   the   payment  of  eight   shil-
■i lings for a peal of the bell Margaret
for John Jasper Vancouver, and on
13th January he was laid to rest
under the shadow of the church of
All Saints, where twenty years before he had been married. He had
given up his appointment under the
Corporation in September, 1770. No
reason is given in the Records, but
most likely it was failing health.
By his will, dated 21st January, 1771,
Charles Turner, Es<l., and the Rev.
Charles Phelpes, vicar of South
Lynn and afterwards of East Winch,
were appointed Executors and charged with an equal division of his property amongst all his children, John
Davies, of Watlington, Esquire, being named as guardian of the children until they should attain the age
of 21. The house in which he resided, with adjoining premises, of which
he was the freeholder, was soldi a
year after his death for .£850. John
Davis, who was appointed guardian
of the childrten, was Lord of the
Manor of Watlington. He was
cousin to John Vancouver's wife,
being, like her, a grandchild of
Hatton Berners. He died in 1778.
John Vancouver, the younger,
seems to have succeeded his father
as Deputy Customer. At any rate,
he was acting in 1784 under Robert
Hales. How long John Vancouver
the younger held his appointment is
not known. He was, however, rated
for a house near the Customs House
in   1788. CHAPTER II.
1776-1780. Second Voyage with Coopk.
The interval of rest before Cook
commenced his last &nd fatal voyage was only a short one. On 6th
Feb., 1776, he received his commission to again command his old ship,
the " Resolution," in an expedition
to discover a sea-way from the Pacific to the Atlantic at the north of
the American continenft'. Previous
attempts had been made to sail from
East to West. This time it was
determined to start from the Pacific
and endeavour to sail eastward, to
the Atlantic. The "Discovery," a
Bhip of 300 tone, commanded by
Capt. Clerke, was selected to accompany the "Resolution," and George
Vancouver was appointed as a midshipman on the smaller vessel. Sailing   from   Plymouth   on   11th  July,
1776, Table Bay was reached on 18th
October, ten days less being taken
than on the previous voyage. They
were in New  Zealand   in February,
1777, and then sailing across the
Pacific from south to nozrth, calling
here and there, discovering islands,
surveying coasts, they arrived off
North America in March, 1778, and,
reaching Nootka Sound on 24th
April, the real business of the expedition—the search for a passage to
the Atlantic"—began. The usual
hardships began likewise, and in the
cold latitudes the crews continually
lamented their departure from
beautiful Tahiti, and compared unfavourably the northern people with
those of the tropical islands. Unfortunately, too, provisions seem to
have become scanty, and an occasional giflt of fish from natives or a
catch by themselves was hailed by
the crew with the greatest delight.
Cook now sailed about the North
Pacific in many directions, examining the coast and searching for an
inlet which should lead to the desired   passage,   but  without   success. The most northerly point reached
was 69Q 36', and Cook then came to
the conclusion that the sea in that
region was never free from the Polar
ice which he there encountered.
Retracing his course, the Captain
again reached the Sandwich Islands,
which he had discovered on his outward voyage. The men were full of
joy on arriving at this haven "after
suffering excess of hunger and a number of other hardships most severely
felt for the space of near ten
months." At Hawaii, his last discovery in the Sandwich group, the
great navigator met his tragic deaith
on 14th Feb., 1779. The command of
the expedition devolved on Capt.
Clerke, who, however, only retained
it a very short time, for he died on
2nd August, and the two vessels
made their way to England, where
they arrived on 4th October, 1780,
minus both  their commanders.
Thus ended, most sorrowfully,
Vancouver's second voyage. He was
now a man of 23, and in the nine years
service under the greatest navigator
of the age he had gained experience
which enabled him later on to record
hig name indelibly on the map of
the  world.
During Cook's second voyage, Mr.
William Wales acted as Astronomer
on the Resolution. Vancouver being
on the same ship was fortunate in
having his studies directed by that
eminent mathematician, and years
afterwards he wrote in the journal
of his great voyage, "The west point
of Observatory inlet I distinguished
by calling it Point Wales, after my
much esteemed friend, Mr. Wales,
of Christ's Hospital; to whose kind
instruction, in the early part of my
life, I am indebted for that information which has enabled me to
traverse and delineate these lonely
regions." Mr. Wales (who was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in
1776) was not, as stated in the Dictionary of National Biography, engaged in Cook's last voyage; for he
was master of the Royal Mathematical
School at Christ's Hospital from 1775 till his death in 1798. On this last
voyage the duty of taking observations on the Resolution was performed by Cook and his second lieutenant, Mr. King, while William Bailey,
who had been assistant astronomer
on the previous voyage, was engaged
for that purpose on the Discovery,
to which ship Vancouver was attached. CHAPTER   III.
1780—1790.      Service Under Rodney
and gardner.
After his return to England, Vancouver lost no time in rising another
step in his profession. On the 19th
October, 1780, he passed his examination as a Lieutenant, and on the
9th December following he was appointed to the "Martin" sloop. Soon
afterwards he was moved into the
"Fame," a ship of 74 guns with a.
crew of 550, which was attached to
the West Indian fleet under the command of Rodney. This period was a
most critical one in the history of
our foreign possessions. England had
then assuredly to meet the "three
corners of the world in arms." Holland, France, Spain were all arrayed
against her and, worst of all, her own
children in the North American Colonies had rebelled and thrown off
her rule. Many of her possessions
had gone, and in the West Indies
only Jamaica, Barbadoes and Antigua were left to her. Spain had
long coveted Jamaica, and the French
fleet of thirty-six line-of-battle ships
under the Count de Grasse, in the
early part of 1782 made a determined
attempt to capture the island. The
French were to be joined by the
Spanish fleet. The combined fleets
would have amounted to sixty ships
of the line. Rodney, with twelve
ships of the line, joined Hood at Barbadoes on 19th February and took
over the command of the British fleet
now numbering thirty-three. Three
other ships which arrived afterwards
brought up the total to thirty-six.
The object of the British Admiral
Was to prevent the junction which de
Grasse desired to make with the
Spaniards. On 8th April the French
weighed anchor, but were soon pursued and overtaken by Rodney off
Dominica. After a short fight between some of the ships on the following day, the French, favoured by the wind, withdrew from action.
Followed persistently by the British,
de Grasse was reluctantly brought to
action. A great battle lasting twelve
hours took place on 12th April, the
French being totally defeated. Their
loss in killed and wounded amounted
to 9,000; that of the English being
under 1,000. The loss on the " Fame"
was only 15, and on Rodney's ship
the "Formidable" 54. De Grasse was
taken prisoner and oonveyed to England. Jamaica was saved, the naval
power of France and Spain destroyed
•and the war at an end. This impoit-
-ant engagement was Vancouver's
only, experience of actual warfare.
The "Fame" returned to England in
1783. In the next year Vancouver
was appointed to the "Europa," and
in her sailed to Jamaica in 1786 under
Commodore Alan (afterwards Lord)
Gardner. He left the "Europa" in
September, 1789, and was appointed
second in command of an exploring
•expedition' about to be despatched to
the South Seas. A new ship named
the "Discovery" was fitted out under
Vancouver's superintendence, but before the preparations fox the voyage
were completed events happened
which caused the expedition to be
abandoned and which brought to Van-
■cover the opportunity which has
made him famous.
—■ 1790
— Nootka Dispute.
On the 15th May, 1790, Parliament
was informed by a message from the
King of a fresh quarrel with Spain,
and for a time it looked as if nothing could; prevent an outbreak of
hostilities between the two countries.
It appears that one John Meares,
formerly a commander in the Royal
Navy, in May, 1788, in a trading ship
called the "Felice," entered Nootka
Sound on the north-western coast of
America, where he was soon afterwards joined by two other ships, the
"Iphigenia" and the "North-West
America." He traded with the Indians and purchased from the chiefs
Maquilla and Calicum, to whom' the
district belonged, the whole of the
land that forms Friendly Cove,
Nootka Sound, in his Britannic
Majesty's name for "eight or ten
sheets of copper and' some trifling
articles." Meares then sailed for
Ohina, leaving behind the "Iphigenia" and the "North-West America" with instructions that they were
to winter m the Sandwich Islands.
When these two vessels returned to
Nootka in the following spring they
were seized by the commander of a
Spanish frigate. The captains and
crews of the English ships were made
prisoners, and on the arrival shortly
afterwards of two other vessels, the
"Argonaut" and the "Princess
Royal," belonging to Meares, these
also were seized. The Spaniards
justified •'■heir action by the allegation that the coast and the adjacent
seas belonged to Spain and that any
foreign ships trading there were guilty
of smuggling, if not piracy. Meares,
as soon as he heard of the outrages,
proceeded to England and complained
to His Majesty's Government on 30th
April, 1790. Satisfaction and reparation were at once required from
Spain. As the Spanish Government
oid not comply with the English de
alt. mands, a message from His Majesty
was on 15th May laid before Parliament containing   information of the
acts  of  violence  complained  of  and
expressing  the King's determination
to support fee honour of his crown
and the rights of the English people.
The House of Commons unanimously
voted an address approving the policy
adopted by the Government, and voted
a million pounds for the purposes of
enforcing the rights of the country.
Preparations for war were now made
by  both  countries.   A large  English
fleet known   as  "the Spanish armament"   was    assembled   under   Lord
Howe.   Spain,  however, at last gave
way, and agreed that the settlement
at Nootka Sound was to be restored
and reparation made for the injuries
sustained by Meares.   It was further
agreed that   British subjects   should
enjoy  free   navigation    and    fishing
rights in the Pacific Ocean and South
Seas  provided that   they should  not
go within ten leagues of any part of
the coast already occupied by Spain.
Arrangements   were    made   that   an
English officer should be sent out " to
receive  back   in   form   the   territory
on which the Spaniards had seized,"
and  at  the same  time to make an
accurate survey of  the  coast northwards from the 30th degree of north
latitude.     For this duty Vancouver
was selected.     On the abandonment
of the proposed   expedition   in   the
"Discovery"   he had been appointed
to the " Courageux,**  commanded by
Gardner.     When   the   "Courageux"
was paid off Vancouver was promoted
to  the   rank   of   Commander,   15th
December, 1790.      The   "Discovery,"
being already fitted ^or a voyasre, was
selected for the expedition to Nootka,
and Vancouver was appointed to command her.   The burthen of the vessel
was only 340  tons, and that of her
armed tender, the "Chatham** (Lieut.
Wm.  Robt.  Broughton,   commander)
135 tons, and there were 100 men on
the    "Discovery,**   and   45   on   the
Vancouver tells us that the Discovery was copper-fastened, sheathed
with plank and coppered over, while the Chatham was only sheathed with
copper. The former mounted ten
four-pounders and ten swivels; the
latter, four three^pounders and six
swivels. He expresses his satisfaction with the provisions furnished
for the voyage and names several of
the articles supplied. Sour-krout and
portable soup were sent in large proportions, and for medicines, among
other things, Dr. Jenner's powders,,
vitriolic elixir, and a hundred-weight
of Peruvian bark. There was also a
liberal assortment of various commodities, useful and ornamental, to
help in the establishment of friendly
intercourse with the natives. The
vessels were supplied with everything
necessary for protection against any
hostile attempts of the native Indians,
while for the "amusement and entertainment of such as were peaceably
and friendly disposed" there was a
"most excellent assortment of well
prepared fireworks."
By th|§ written instructions, dated
8th March, 1791, the ships were to
proceed to the Sandwich Islands and,
while wintering there, to examine
and survey the islands. As soon as
the weather should be favourable in
the following February or March
they were to repair to< the north-west
coast of America for the purpose of
acquiring a more complete knowledge
of it. Orders from the Government
with reference to taking over the
buildings and land seized by the
Spaniards were to be sent to the
Sandwich Islands by another vessel.
In the examination of the coast the
principal objects to be kept in view
-were: 1st, To acquire information
with respect to any water communication between the north-west coast
and the country upon the opposite
side of the continent. 2ndly, To ascertain the number, extent and situation of any settlements made by
any European nation, and the time
when such settlement was  made.
In the prosecution of the first-
named object particular attention
was to   be   paid to  the examination of the "supposed straits of Juan de
Great care was to be taken to
avoid giving any ground of jealousy
or complaint to the subjects of His
Catholic Majesty, and to co-operate
with any Spanish ships which might
be met with employed on similar
All the work was expected to be
completed so that the ships could
return to England in the summer of
Additional instructions, dated 20th
August, 1791, were duly sent to Van-
cover by the "Dcedalus" transport
to receive from the Spanish officer
commanding at Nootka possession of
the buildings and districts or parcels
of land which were occupied by His
Majesty's subjects in the month of
April,  1789. CHAPTER V.
1791-2 — New Hoplland, Society an_
Sandwich    Islands',     New
Albion, Strait oe Juan de
Fuca & Vancouver Island,,
The Discovery left Deptford on the
7th Jan., 1791.. This was the first
trial of the ship under sail, and she
satisfied Vancouver that he had a
"handy and in all other respects a
very comfortable vessel." S'he was detained in the Long Reach taking on
board ordnance stores and other
things from Deptford dockyard, leaving on the 26th for Portsmouth, where
she arrived on 5th Feb. Certain defects in the ship's head being reme-
d_eid, Portsmouth was left on 3rd
March, and on the 12th Falmouth
was reached. Here the Discovery had
to wait for the Chatham, whose pre-
•paration had not been so forward.
Both ships sailed out of Carrack Road
on 1st April, and Vancouver records
that "at midnight we took a long
farewell of our native shores."
The choice of route to the Pacific
Ocean having been left to Vancouver,
he decided to go by way of the Cape
of Good Hope. The Chatham was
found to be a bad sailer and "very
crank." Cape Town was reached on
10th July. Here four seamen, who
seemed unfitted to the service, were
replaced by others. The precautions
taken for the preservation of the
health of the crews are described as
follows: The store rooms were "clear,
ed, cleaned and washed with vinegar,"
and notwithstanding the weather was
hot and the smoke and heat were inconvenient and disagreeable, good fires
were burning between decks in the
fore part of every day to keep up a
constant circulation of fresh and pure
air throughout the ship.
The vessels left the Cape on 17th
August, "saluting the garrison with
eleven  guns, which were equally re- "turned." Before leaving, several of
the Discovery's crew were attacked
with dysentery, and a marine died
after the ship sailed.
Australia, then called New Holland,
was the next destination, and land
was sighted on 26th September. A
•conspicuous promontory at the southwest corner of the continent was
given the name of "Cape Chatham"
"in honour of that noble earl who
presided at the Board of Admiralty
on our departure." Stalling eastward
along the coast they discovered a
capacious harbour which Vancouver
named "King George the Third's
Sound." On the 29th the British
colours were displayed, His Majesty's
health drunk, and formal possession
was taken "of the country from the
land we saw north-westward of Cape
Chatham so far as we might explore
it» coasts," Various capes, islands
and mountains were named as the
-ships proceeded. Storms and contrary winds kept the ships in the
newly discovered sound, the time being employed in surveying the inlet
and the land on its edge, until the
11th October, when the voyage was
•continued eastward. On the 21st October Termination Island was found,
and so named because it was the end
■of the researches on this coast. The
length of coast surveyed extended to
110 leagues. No natives appear to
have been met with, but deserted villages were seen and extraordinary
devastation of the forests had been
^caused by fires. Descriptions are given
in the journal of the voyage of the
animal and vegetable life observed,
and of such minerals as came under
notice. For the benefit 6f those who
might visit the country afterwards,
vine cuttings and water cresseg were
planted and several kinds of seeds
were sown.
On leaving New Holland a southeasterly course was steered, and on
-the 26th October Van Dieman's Land
(now Tasmania) was sighted. Round,
ing that island, the ships made for
Dusky Bay in New Zealand (which
Vancouver had previously visited in 1773 with Capt. Cook) and they arrived there on 2nd November. A violent
gale was encountered here, the Discovery being driven from her anchorage and sustaining considerable damage to her sails and rigging. It was
decided to put in at Facile Harbour
inside the' Bay, and some time was
spent there in repairing the* vessels.
When these repairs were well advanced an excursion was made in
three boats over the spacious Bay
and the upper part of the northern
arm, the onlj part not examined by
Cook, and by him called "Nobody
knows what," was explored; This
arm was found to be divided into
two branches, leaving (what Cook
called Apparent Island), _ peninsula
joined to the main land by a high
but narrow ridge of mountains. The
heads of these two branches Vancouver humorously designated " Somebody knows what." Facile Harbour
and Anchor Island Harbour were
carefully surveyed during the stay.
On the 22nd November the ships sailed out of Dusky Bay, the health of
the crew (many of whom had been
sick since leaving Cape Town) perfectly re-established. Only one with a
chronic complaint and two' with
wounds were on the surgeon's list.
The care of his men's health seems
always to have been uppermost in
Vancouver's mind, and "on the most
trifling occasion of indisposition, no
person was ever permitted to attend
his duty." This was Vancouver's
fifth visit to New Zealand.
The next appointed rendezvous was
. Matavai Bay in Otaheite, one of the
Society Islands. On the way a cluster
of seven craggy islands, not seen by
Cook, extending about six miles, was
•discovered and named from their
dangerous position "The Snares."
Another island which Vancouver
named Oparo was discovered on 22nd
December. Some of the natives came
off to the ship, and after considerable persuasion went on board, where
they were presented with various
articles. Owing to these gifts, the
Captain   says,   "we shortly   had   as many visitors as it was pleasant to
entertain." The Discovery on reaching Matavai Bay found the Chatham
already there. On the way Lieut.
Broughton had discovered and taken
possession of an island which he
named Chatffam Island. On landing
he had met some natives and tried
to barter with them, but though willing and anxious to take, they gave
nothing in return. Some of the
natives proved hostile in the end,
and unfortunately one was killed by
the English in self defence. Vancouver expresses his satisfaction at
finding when the two ships met "that
every individual composing the society of each vessel was in a most perfect state of health." While here the
Captain made some strict regulations
for trading with the natives.
The hospitable Otaheitans (who
have pleased every voyager who has
touched at their charming and fruitful island) were delighted by the visit
of the Englishmen. They crowded on
board as soon as the Discovery was
anchored. Vancouver was grieved to
find that most of the friends he had
left in 1777 were dead. The king
Otoo was still living on another island, but had resigned his kingdom
to his eldest son, a boy 9 or 10 years
old, who had taken the name of Otoo,
the father (whom Vancouver speaks
of as "my old friend") now calling
himself Pomurrey.
The first day of 1792 was observed
as a holiday by the crews. "Everyone had as much fresh pork and plum,
pudding as he could make use of; and
lest in the voluptuous gratifications
of Otaheite we might forget our
friends in old England, all hands
were served a double allowance of
grog to drink the healths of their
sweethearts and friends at home.**
Perhaps to account for the omission
of "wives" from the toast list, Vancouver adds " It is somewhat singular
that the gunner of the Discovery was
the only married man of the whole
party. The stay at Otaheite extended over
three   weeks,  during which  a small
boat was built and the vessels overhauled. Friendly intercourse was
preserved with the natives, presents
were exchanged, and on one occasion
they were treated to fireworks, but
another promised display later was
withheld as a punishment for the
theft of some linen. Axes were looked
upon as the most valuable presents
by the native men. Red cloth and
linen were also much in request, while
the ladies most desired seissors and
(vanity of vanities!!) looking glasses.
Vancouver laments that the islanders
were neglecting their own manufactures and becoming more and more
dependent on occasional callers for
various European commodities. The
old chief Pomurrey was sent for and
was found to have a "perfect recollection" of Vancouver, who, he observed, however, "looked very old
since we had parted." Pomurrey at
one sitting drank a bottle of brandy
without diluting it. This, as might
be expected, produced violent convulsions, but after an hour's sleep he
■ arose to all appearances as much
refreshed with his nap as if he had
retired perfectly sober." The old
man wanted more drink, and on his
being refused and expostulated with,
he accused Vancouver of being a
stingy fellow. The latter determined
to cure him by letting him have as
much brandy or rum as he chose to
call for. In less than a week the
cure was made, Pomurrey ceasing to
ask for spirits and being satisfied
with a few glasses of wine at and
after dinner. One of the chiefs
brought for inspection a portrait of
Capt. Cook drawn by Mir. Webber in
1777. This picture wa_ kept in the
house of the chief of Matavai and had
become a public register. On the back
of it was recorded the fact that the
"Pandora," the ship despatched to
search for the "Bounty" mutineers,
had quitted the island on 8th May,
1791. It will be remembered that the
Bounty left England in December,
1787, arrived at Matavai Oct., 1788,
and in1 April, 1789, some of the crew,
wr flattered with the hopes of a happy
life among the Otaheitans, and also
attracted by some of the women, who
are described by the captain of the
Bounty as " handsome, mild and
cheerful in their manners and conversation/' so far forgot their duties
and position as English sailors as to
rise in mutiny, casting off the captain and those who were loyal to him.
The Pandora was sent to search tor
the mutineers, and, as stated, had
only left Otaheite with some of them
seven months be! ore Vancouver's
visit. The subsequent history of the
remainder of the mutineers is romantic. Years afterwards the sole survivor and the children of some of his
guilty companions were discovered xm
an island of the Pacific called "Pit-
cairn" Island, and that island and
another,—Norfolk Island—are still
peopled by descendants of the mutineers. Vancouver frequently saw some
of the women who had infatuated the
mutineers, and he remarks that they
"were not such as we siiould have
imagined could possibly have tempted
Englishmen to so unpardonable a
breach of their duty," and indeed he
speaks very disparagingly of the
beauty of the women, his opinion differing considerably from that of Capt.
Bligh of the "Bounty." The account
given by Vancouver of his stay at
Otaheite is lengthy and full of interest, giving as it does minute descriptions of the natives, their customs
and ceremonies.
Our voyagers left on 24th January,
1792, directing their course northward,
having now for the first time pointed
> their vessels' heads towards the grand
object of the expedition, and on the
1st March they came in sight of
Owhyhee,one of the Sandwich Islands.
Tho reception at these islands was not
of such a hospitable character as at
the Society Islands, and difficulty was
experienced at Owhyhee in getting a
supply of water. At Woahoo and
Attowai the inhabitants were a little
more friendly, but still they compared
unfavourably with those of the islands previously visited, and Vancouver speaks with  great  disgust  of their morals. They found some Englishmen living at Attowai engaged in
collecting sandal wood and pearls for
an American trader. An elderly chief
named Enemoh affected to recollect
Vancouver's former visit with Capt.
Cook, adding that he was present
when Vancouver gave a lock of his
hair to another chief named Taio,
who had ever since preserved and carried the relic, about with him. This
incident appears to have been impressed on Enemoh's memory by his
being refused a similar pledge of
friendship, while it had quite gone
from Vancouver's recollection. The
visit to the Sandwich Islands was concluded on 16th March. At one time
great apprehensions were felt that
some attack might be made, and
watchfulness was observed to guard
against any such treachery. Before
leaving, however, a better opinion of
the natives appears to have been
formed, and they were treated to a
firework display. Presents were exchanged as usual. The chief desire of
the natives was for firearms, but their
requests for these were firmly refused.
On 17th April Vancouver arrived,
in about 40° N. latitude, within two
miles of the coast of New Albion, as
the country north of Mexico and Calir
fornia,now known as Oregon andWash.
ington in the United States, was then
called. This name of "New Albion"
was given by Sir Francis Drake. Here
the expedition had (after an absence
from England of more than twelve
months) arrived at a point where the
real work for which it was despatched
was about to begin, At this, time
very little appears to have been known
of the country bordering on the
north-east of the Pacific ranging between California and Alaska. A map
prepared after . Cook's last voyage
shows that there was more familiarity
with Alaska and Behring's Strait,
where names are thickly studded all
along the coast line. Cook had called
at Nootka, the entrance to which he
had named "King George's Sound,"
but he had no idea when he landed
there that he was on a large island
and consequently what we now know as Vancouver Island is not shown as
detached from the mainland. So also,
a little further north, we do not find
Queen Charlotte Islands marked.
Cape Perpetua, Cape Foul weather and
Cape Flattery at the entrance to Juan
de Fuca Sitrait are names given by
Cook, while north of Nootka we have
the vague statement " Land seen by
the Spaniards 1775."
After Cook's time, certain parts of
the coast were visited by various
traders in search of furs. Nathaniel
Portlock in the "King George," with
George Dixon in the "Queen Charlotte," during the yeans 1786-7 traded
along the coast southward from Cook's
river to Nootka. Dixon discovered
and named Queen Charlotte Islands
and Queen Charlotte's Sound after
his vessel. John Meares was at Prince
William's Sound in 1786, and at Noot.
ka in 1788. His'transactions with the
chiefs at the latter place may be
looked upon as having laid the foundation of British dominion in Western
Canada. He published in 1790 an account of his voyages illustrated by
engravings and maps". A French
edition was also published. On one
of the maps he indicates an alleged
track of the American sloop Washing,
ton by a channel from Juan de Fuca
Strait round what he terms "Northern Archipelago" to an entrance north
of Queen Charlotte Islands. George
Dixon, in 1791, published a vigorous
attack on Meares for misrepresenting
in his book important facts relative
to geography and commerce, including
the map referred to above. It certainly seems that no rehahce can be
placed on the statement that the
Washington circumnavigated Vancouver Island. Captain Robert Gray,
who was in command of the ship at
the time she was said to have made
the voyage, disclaimed the honour.
Vancouver was fortunate enough to
meet Gray in command of another
ship, the "Columbia," just before
reaching the Straits of Juan de Fuca,
and he says in his journal: " It is not
possible to conceive anyone to be more
astonished than was Mr. Gray, on hie
being made acquainted, that his auth- ority had been quoted, and the track
pointed out that he had been said to
have made in the sloop Washington.
In contradiction to which, he assured
the officers that he had penetrated
only 50 miles into the straits in question, in an E.S.E. direction; that he
found the passage five leagues wide;
and that he understood from the
natives that the opening extended a
considerable distance to the northward; that this was all the information he had acquired respecting this
inland sea, and that he returned into
the ocean by the same way he had
entered." Gray was succeeded in the
command of the Washington by Oapt.
John Kendrick, and Meares, in a reply to Dixon, stated that he got his
information from a man who talked
with Capt. Kendrick. Kendrick, how.
ever, did not afterwards make any
claim to the important discovery of
the passage, which it is safe to assume
he would have done had he made the
voyage. The weakness of the unsupported hearsay evidence on which
Meares relied justifies us in classing
the supposed track of the Washington with other very manifest errors
in the chart. Reports had been obtained from the natives that Nootka
was on an island; both Meares and
Gray had sailed a short distance up
the strait; and these facts may have
been the basis of the conjectural track
which Meares marked on his map.
Vancouver sighted new Albion,
slightly south of Cape Mendocino, and
he then followed the coast in a northerly direction, Point St. George,
Dragon Rocks, St. George's Bay, and
Cape Orfordl '(after (the noble earl
of that title "my much respected
friend") being named on the way.
The Earl of Orford at this time was
the celebrated Horace Walpole, who
had previously been one of the members for King's Lynn. When, however, Vancouver left England, George
Walpole, a grandson of the great
Prime Minister, held the title, and it
was in his honour that the cape was
named, his death, on 5th December,
1791, not being known to the voyagers.
Cape Perpetua being passed they had "nearly reached tlie northern extent
of the coast seen thereabouts by Capt.
Cook." On the 28fh April Point
Grenville in lat. 47 ° 22' was passed
and named after the Right Hon. Lord
Grenville. On the 29th the ships were
brought to anchor within the entrance
to the Staits of Juan de Fuca.
There is a good deal of mystery
about the connection of the name of
Juan de Fuca with this estuary. De
Fuca is said to have been a Greek
pilot, in the service of Spain, who,
in 1592, entered, on the coast of North
America, "a broad inlet of the sea
between 47,° and 48 c" and to have
sailed therein more than twenty days
until he came, as he thought, into tie
Atlantic. He then returned by the
same route.      By some it is thought
de   Fuca   really   navigated  the
separating    Vancouver    Island
British Columbia, and that when
he reached Queen Charlotte Sound he
imagined that he had passed from
the Pacific to the Atlantic, and discovered the north-west passage.
Others, again, are of opinion, from
statements in the narrative which are
at variance with fact, that there is
great suspicion "as to whether the
reported voyage was ever performed
or the hero oi it ever existed." The
balance of evidence, however, seems
to favour de Fuca's claim to the discovery of the strait. Captain Barkley, of the British trading ship "Imperial Eagle" rediscovered the inlet
in 1787, but did not explore it. Barkley Sound on the south-west side of
Vancouver Island was discovered and
named by Captain Barkley at the
same time. It is generally admitted
that Captain Meares was the firsij
Englishman to actually enter the
strait, and he it was who
it by the name of Juan de
up a short
attacked by
to return.
were   great
It is evident
Fuca.   He
and then,
was com-
this strait might prove the beginning
of a waterway connecting the Pacific
with, the Atlantic, it having been
"alledged that the Spaniards have recently found an entrance in the lati- tude of 47° 45' north, which in 27"
days course brought them to the_vic-
inity of Hudson's bay." It will be
remembered too that Vancouver was
enjoined to pay particular attention
to this strait. On 30th April the
ships sailed up the inlet along the
southern shore and, as they proceeded,
conjectures as to its nature varied
from hour to hour.,
At one time, high land just rising
from the horizon ahead seemed to indicate a speedy termination of the
inlet. Then, the land not||| being
visibly connected, it was thought
that it might form a cluster of
islands. A very conspicuous craggy
mountain covered with snow was
seen rising ■" apparently at a very remote distance." This mountain, the
highest peak in the Cascade range,
and which we now know to be 10,700
feet in height, was given the name
of Mount Baker in compliment to
Vancouver's 3rd lieutenant, who first
observed it. By the evening a long,.
low, sandy point on the Southern
shore was reached, which was named
New Dungeness from its great resemblance to Dungeness in the English channel, and here anchor was
cast. This was almost directly opposite the site, on the northern side
of the Strait, where the city of Victoria now stands. May-day was spent
in searching for a harbour and a
supply of water, both of which were
found, and next day the ships were
taken into an inlet which was duly
named "Port Discovery." The beautiful surrounding country called to
the minds of the wanderers "certain
delightful and beloved situations in
old England." Vancouver was charmed by the district. He says, " To describe the beauties of tjhis region
will, on some future occasion, be a
very grateful task to the pen of a
skilful panegyrist. The serenity of
the climate, the innumerable pleasing landscapes, and the abundant fer.
tilifiy that# unaissislted najture puts
forth, require only to be enriched by
the industry of man with villages,
mansions, cottages, and other buildings, to render it the most lovely
country that can be imagined; whilst
the labour of the inhabitants would
be   amply rewarded   in the bounties which nature seems ready to bestow
•on cultivation." The country was,
however, nearly destitute of inhabitants. Those seen were friendly and
resembled the natives of Nootka, but
were cleaner. They bartered bows
and implements for knives, trinkets,
etc., and were very anxious to sell,
for some pieces of copper, two children, each about six or seven years of
age. An encampment was formed on
shore and the following is a description given of the work of overhauling the vessels:—"On Thursday
morning the 3d we sat seriously to
work on board, and on shore where
the sailmakers were repairing and
-altering the sails; coopers inspecting
the casks; gunners airing the powder; and parties cutting wood, brewing spruce beer, and filling water;
whilst those on board were as busily
•employed in necessary repairs about
the rigging; getting the provisions
to hand; clearing the main and after
holds for the reception of shingle
ballast, of which we had for some
time stood in much need; some of
•our carpenters were stopping leaks
about the bows, and the rest assisted in caulking the Chatham's sides."
Eastward of Port Discovery an important opening, with many
branches, was found and named
Admiralty Inlet. This name has now
nearly gone out of use, having been
■srupereeded by that of Puget Sound.
The Discovery's yawl and launch and
the Chatham's cutter were engaged
from the 7th to the 14th May in exploring and surveying the offshoot
from Admiralty Inlet named Hood's
"Canal, after Lord Hood, a harbour
at the entrance being called Port
Townshend "in honour of the noble
marquis of that name."
The Townshends are intimately con.
nee ted with the history of Norfolk.
Many of them sat in Parliament for
the county or some of it© boroughs.
Sir Horatio Townshend was one of
the six commoners who with six peers
went to the Hague to entreat Charles
11. to return to hia dominions. For
his service in bnnoirig «hout the
"Restoration** he was. in 1661, created
Baron Townshend of Lynn Regis, and
ill 1682 he was advanced to the dignity of Viscount Townshend of Rayn-
ham (the family seat), about eighteen miles from Lynn. The great-grand-'
son of the 1st Viscount was advanced
to the dignity of Marquis Townshend,
and he is the Marquis to whom Vancouver here refers. This nobleman,
who was godson to George I., had a
distinguished career. At the siege of
Quebec he became commander-in-chief
after the death of Wolf, and to him
the town surrendered. He also fought
at Dettingen, Fontenoy, Culloden and
Laffeldt. He was Lord Lieutenant of
Ireland for five years, and held many
other important posts.
At various points along the coast
tall straight poles like flag staves or
beacons 90 to 100 feet high were observed, but for what purpose these
were fixed Vancouver was unable to
discover. Similar poles are several
times referred to by him, and he always seems curious to know their use.
It has since been ascertained that
the 'Indians used the poles for the
purpose of catching ducks. Nets were
stretched from one pole to another,
and in these the ducks1 were caught
at night or during thick weather.
In one place two poles, about fifteen
feet high from the ground, had on
the top of each a human head recently placed there. A singular
method of disposing of the dead was
noted, canoes suspended between two
or more trees twelve feet from the
ground contained the skeletons of
two or more persons. Baskets holding the skeletons of young children
were found suspended on high trees,
and human bones were found scattered about the beach in great numbers.
The ships left Port Discovery on
18th May, the Chatham going north
to explore what looked like an archipelago of islands, and the Discovery
continuing the examination of Admiralty Inlet. The survey of the Inlet lasted a fortnight. A harbour
(now a naval station of the United
Sftates), on the western side of Admiralty Inlet, was named Port
Orchard, after H. M. Orchard, who
is entered on the Discovery's muster
roll as a clerk. South of this harbour an island was named Vashon's
Island "after my friend Captain
Vashon, of the Navy." The southern
extremity of Admiralty Inlet was
named Puget's   Sound, after   one of
■B_W the officers, a branch of the Inlet to
the north-east being termed Possession
bound. Inside the latter, at a place
named after "a particular friend"
Penn's Cove, a deserted village
wag found with several sepulchres
lormed exactly like a sentry box.
One of the witnesses to Vancouver's
will was Granville Penn (a grandson
of the founder of Pennsylvania), and
he may have been the " particular
friend" referred to. Mr. Whidbey,
who circumnavigated the island
named after him on the east of the
entrance to Admiralty Inlet, met with
some natives who had not, apparently, seen any Europeans belore.
They showed a great desire to be
satisfied as to the colour of the visitors' skins;, making signs that the
hands and faces were painted white,
and when convinced of their mistake
"their astonishment was inexpressible." The western arm of Possession
Sound was named Port Gardner, after
Vice-Admiral Sir Alan Gardner, under whom Vancouver had previously
served, and the smaller or eastern
one was designated Port Susan, after,
it  is said,   Admiral   Gardner's  wife
The 4th June, being the anniversary
of the King's birthday, all hands
were served "as good a dinner as we
were able to provide them, with
double allowance of grog to drink the
King's health," and formal possession
was then taken of the coast from that
part of New Albion in lat. 39° 20-
north and long. 236p W east to the
entrance to the "supposed" straits of
Juan de Fuca; as likewise all the
islands within the straits and in the
interior sea, which was honoured with
the name of the Gulf of Georgia, the
continent binding the said gulf being named New Georgia, in honour
of His Majesty.
The north and west points respectively of Admiralty Inlet were named
Point Partridge and Point Wilson,
the latter alter Capt. Geo. Wilson,
of the Navy, " my much esteemed
friend." The name of the other point
ia accounted for b(y the fact that
Captain Vancouver's brother, John,
married, in 1786, Martha, daughter of
Henry Partridge, K.C., Recorder of
King's Lynn, by his second wife,
Alice, daughter of Simon Taylor,
merchant. The Taylors lived in the
house   in   Queen   Street,   Lynn,  how known as Clifton House. The initials
S. T. and the date 1708 may still be
seen on a cistern head on the front
of the house. One ot the family, also
named Simon Taylor, Mayor in 1675
and 1681, and Member of Parliament
1678-1684, was knighted 9th July, 1684.
The Partridge family is still represented in Lynn by a member of the
legal pro-ession.
The ships were now headed north
from Admiralty Inlet up the Gulf
of Georgia, and on 8th June Cypress
island (named from the abundance of
upright cypress) was reached, and the
Discovery's anchors were cast inStnaw-
berry Bay on the western side of the
island, but the Chatham was driven
to the eastward by a strong flood tide
and lost her stream anchor. The
anchorage in Strawberry Bay being
much exposed it was decided to proceed furtner north, and on 11th June
Birch Bay (named from the abundance of black birch trees) was
reached. Here it was arranged to
station the ships while the coast was
examined from boats. Mr. Whidbey,
in the Discovery's cutter, attended by
the Chatham's launch, was to make
further observations1 to the southeast; and Vancouver in the yawl, accompanied by Mr. Puget in the
launch, was to proceed further up
the main inlet of the gulf. Vancouver was absent from the ships
from the 12th to 23rd June. It is
evident from the care that wag taken
to explore every opening on the continental side that Vancouver had always in mind the hope of discovering
some inlet which would prove the beginning of a navigable passage to the
Atlantic. A point north-west of Birch
Bay was named Point Roberts "after
my esteemed friend and predecessor
in the Discovery," and on the 13th
•an important inlet was reached. This
was named Burrard's Canal, after Sir
Harry Burrard, of the Navy, and it
is particularly interesting from the
fact that on the shores of this inlet
now stand© the city which bears the
name of the pallant sailor who commanded the little expedition which
sailed up the channel on that June
day in 1792. The growth of the city
of Vancouver is phenomenal. The
whole of the little town which stood
on the site was completely destroved
by fire on 13th June,  1886.   The in- habitants pluckily set to work at once
to rebuild their homes. A charter of
incorporation was granted, the name
ot Vancouver being given to the new
town. In fifteen years the population
reached 26,000. By 1903 it had risen
to 30,000, and it now amounts to
200,000. The city is the mainland
terminus of the Canadian Pacific
Railway, and it has one of the finest
harbours in the world. The shipping
returns for 1919 show a total of 23,000
vessels entering and leaving the harbour with a registered tonnage of
over ten millions. Where now stands
this important town, with its handsome buildings, electric cars, shipbuilding yards and other indications
of prosperity, our voyagers only saw
" two or three natives straggling about
the beach."
Point Grey on the southern side
of the entrance to Burrard's Canal,
was named after Capt. Geo. Grey, of
the Navy, and the point on the north,
ern side was named Point Atkinson.
Howe's Sound (so named in honour
of Admiral Earl Howe), lying between
Point Atkinson and Point Gower and,
further to the north-west, Jlervis's
Canal (after Admiral Sir John Jervis)
were carefully explored before the
course of the boats was directed towards the station where the ships had
been left. In each case it was found
that the eastern range of snowy mountains was an "impenetrable barrier
to that inland navigation of which
we had heard so much, and had sought
with sanguine hopes and ardent exertions to discover."
On the way back to the ships two
Spanish vessels of war were met with.
These vessels were engaged in surveying the gulf, and Vancouver reco_tis
his mortification in finding that others
liad already examined the external
shores a few miles beyond where his
own researches had so far extended.
From the Spaniards the news was
obtained that Sen. Quadra, the Spanish commander, was waiting the arrival at Nootka of the English expedition in order to neaociate the restoration of those territories to the
crown of Great Britain.
On the 23rd June the English ships
were reached, a distance of 830 mile*
having been traversed in the boats.
The next day the ships sailed out of Birch Bay and, accompanied by the*
Spanish vessels, proceeded up the
gulf to the north-westward. A
large number of whales playing about,
in every direction favoured the assertion that a passage to the ocean would
be found by persevering in the present course, and in that course,always
keeping close to the continental shore
and anxiously examining every inlet,
Vancouver proceeded cautiously on
the voyage which, ultimately on 9th
August, 1792, took him again into the
Pacific Ocean, and thus proved that
the land to the westward of his
course, and which now bears his
name, was an island. The ships anchored in several places, and surveying parties were sent out in the
boats. How thoroughly their work
was done may be best judged by referring to the chart of the locality
published with the History of the
Voyage. The navigation was often
difficult. Dangerous intricate channels, studded with rocky islets, had
to be threaded; and when the Pacific
had been nearly reached, the Discovery grounded on a bed of sunken
rooks. As the water fell, the situation became alarming. When the
tide was at the lowest the ship's forefoot was in only about 3£ feet of
water, while her stern was in four
fathoms. Fortunately, the weather
being favourable, there was no swell,,
and she floated off with the next
tide without having received any apparent injury. The Chatham also
grounded soon afterwards, but was
got off without much difficulty. Many
of the names bestowed during the
voyage, on headland, island and inlet
still remain in use. Point Mudge,
Johnstone's Strait and B rough ton's
Archipelago were named after officers
in the expedition. Naval friends
were honoured by Call's Canal,.
Knight's Canal, Point Duff and
Mount Stephens. Point Upwood at
the southern end of Texada Island
was named " in remembrance of an
early friendship." Most likely this
was after a family named Upwood of
Terrington, near Lynn. They acquired the Lovell's Hall estate in
1688. The last male representative
was Vicar of Terrington, and he
died in 1868. Desolation Sound obtained its name from the  "desolate* rude and inhospitable aspect " of the
surrounding country.   The headland**}
at the entrance to  this/Sound were
respectively named Point Sarah and
Point Mary.   Two of his sisters bore
these names, and though Vancouver
does not tell us so there can be little
•doubt that it was after them that he
called these two points.    A few  Indian   villages were   seen and  visited
•during the voyage.   The natives were
uniformly   friendly,   but,   as   usual,
.given  to  thieving.       Some  of them
were armed with muskets, which they
had  apparently   obtained   from    the
Spaniards.     More than three months
were occupied by  this   interior voyage.   Queen Charlotte's Sound, where
"the ships emerged   into   the   ocean,
had been name-din 1786.   This name,
and those of Smith's Inlet, Calvert's
Inlands   and   Fitzhugh's   Sound,   being names given by the first discov-
-erers, were continued by Vancouver.
Before turning towards Nootka,
Vancouver spent ten days more in
investigating the continental shore.
While so engaged he was surprised
by the arrival of an English trading
brig<. Learning that Senr. Quadra
was " waiting with the greatest impatience to deliver up
the settlement and territories
at Nootka," Vancouver decided to
abandon the northern survey for the
present and sail for Nootka.
ingly, on 19th August the
sailed round the north side
verf s Island and on the 28th they
reached Nootka. Vancouver •records
that he was received " with the greatest cordiality" by Senr. Don Juan
Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra.
He also notes his gratification with
a repast such as lately they had been
little accustomed to,—"a dinner of
five courses served with great elegance," royal salutes being fired on
drinking health to the Sovereigns of
England and Spain.
And now began a diplomatic duel,
which lasted lor abou£ three weeks.
-Quadra attempted to justify the action
of hie'countrymen, and, while denying that Mr. Meares had any house
at Nootka or had ever . purchased
any land there, offered "without prejudice to the legitimate right of
Spain" to cede to England the
houses,   offices    and    gardens   which
of Cal- were taken from British subjects in
April, 1789, observing at the same
time that Nootka. ought to be the
most northerly Spanish settlement,
the land to the north being left free
to both parties. Vancouver firmly
declined to enter into a discussion
on the respective rights and pretensions of the Courts of Spain and
England, his powers being only to
receive the territories which, according to the convention of 28th October,
1790, Senr. Quadra was authorised to
restore and put him in possession of.
These territories' he understood to
be " Nootka in toto and port Cox " (or
Clayoquot), and he refused to entertain the idea of hoisting the British
flag on the spot pointed out by
Quadra "not extending more than a
hundred yards in any direction." He
also claimed as " ports of free acess "
ail establishments north of St. Francisco, which he conceived to be the
northernmost settlement occupied by
the subjects of His Catholic Majesty
in April, 1789. Several interviews
took place between the two coni-
manders, and letters passed between
them, but they could not agree. At
one interview everything appeared to
be settled, Quadra accepting Vancouver's version and inquiring who
the British intended to leave in possession. Soon afterwards Vancouver
was surprised to receive a letter from
the Spaniard in which the original
contention was revived. So a settlement of the dispute was as far off
as ever. In the end, negotiations had
to be broken off and an arrangement
made to refer the differences to the
respective Courts. During all this
fencing the friendly personal intercourse was not affected in any way.
The two commanders visited, dined
together and appear to have formed
feelings of great respect for each
other. A suggestion made by Quadra
that Vancouver should name some
port or island after both of them
resulted in the tract of land which
had first been circumnavigated by the
Englishman being named "Qjuadra
and Vancouver's Island." The Spaniard's name has long since dropped
out of use, but the island still bears
the name of the English commander.
While   the    negotiations   weTe   in
progress, Vancouver,  accompanied by Quadra, paid a formal visit to the
Indian chief Maquinna, who was
greajcly pleased by this attention. A
few days afterwards the Chief, with
two wives and some relatives, returned the visit and, says Vancouver,
"they had not been long on board
when I had great reason to consider my royal party as the most
consummate beggars I had ever seen."
Everything which, struck their fancy
they demanded and if refused affected to be offended. On this occasion
some of the fireworks which had been
brought for the purpose were let off
to amuse the guests. It is recorded
that the Spaniards had succeeded in
gaining the good opinion of the
natives, who regretted the prospect
of  their quitting the station.
Vancouver, in his account of the
negotiations with Quadra, expresses
the hope that his actions will not be
found liable to censure "when the
very important commerce of this
country shall be properly appreciated." It was a great satisfaction to
him that a few days after the negotiations were suspended a Portuguese
vessel arrived, having on board a Mr.
Robert Duffin, who had accompanied
Meares in 1788, and was with him on
his first arrival at Nootka. Mr.
Duffin's account of the transaction
between Mr. Meares and the Indian
Chiefs proved to Vancouver that his
action m refusing to agree to the
Spanish proposals was right.
Despatches were now prepared for
England and entrusted to the 1st
lieutenant, Mr. Mudge, who it was
hoped would return with further
On arriving at Nootka, Vancouver
had found awaiting him the Dcedalus
store ship laden, with a supply of provisions and stores for the use of the
expedition. The crew of this ship had
passed through some most distressing
experiences. The ship had a narrow
escape from destruction by fire near
the Marquesas Isles and Lieut. Her-
gest the commander, Mr. Gooch the
astronomer, and one of the seamen
were murdered by the inhabitants of
Woahoo whilst on shore procuring
water at that island.
On 12th October, 1792, Nootka was
quitted and   the   three   ships  sailed southwards along the coast making
observations and explorations as they
proceeded, the Chatham being left on
the way to make further investigations of the Columbia River and the
Dcedalus to make observations at
Gray's Harbour.
Broughton, with the Chatham,
spent about a fortnight in exploring
the Columbia River, up which he went
about 120 miles, the greater part of
the way in boats. He gave the names
of officers of the expedition to several
tributaries and islands, and a point
at the end of his journey he called
"Point Vancouver." "Having every
reason to believe that the subjects of
no other civilized nation or state had
ever entered this river before,"
#Broughton formally took possession of
it and the country in its vicinity in
the name of the King. It appears,
however, that Capt. Grey in the
"Columbia" had been about twelve or
fifteen miles up the river earlier in
the same year and these rival claims
to discovery afterwards caused
trouble between England and the
United States.
The Discovery arrived at the
Spanish town and settlement of St.
Francisco on 14th November. Here
they were most hospitably entertained, and Vancouver gives a
very minute description of the settlement and the surrounding country.
The Chatham having arrived, both
vessels sailed from St. Francisco,
I as fine a port as the world affords,"
and made for Monterrey where they
found at anchor, besides the Dcedalus,
three Spanish vessels, one of which
was commanded by Senr. Quadra,
who had taken up his residence at
the Governor's house. The Englishmen were welcomed and again treated
in a most friendly manner. It was
here arranged, with the kindly 'help
of Quadra, that Lieut Broughton
should proceed across the continent
of America with further despatches
for England. Provisions and stores
were taken off the Dcedalus, which
was then laden with live cattle and
despatched for the service of the infant colony in New South Wales. CHAPTER   VI.
Second Visit to the Sandwich
Islands and Survey of the
American   Coast.
In the early  part  of 1793 another
visit   was    made   to    the   Sandwich
Islands.    Nearly a month was  spent
at  Owhyhee,   the  natives   of    which
were    extremely    hospitable.       Vancouver   was   evidently   pleased with
the king,  but  he    had    some   little
trouble in  settling the jealousies   of
the minor chiefs over the division of
presents   which   he  made   to   them.
He embraced    every   opportunity to»
convince the king and his chiefs that
a peaceable mode   of   life   was to be
preferred and more conducive to their
happiness than the continual state of
warfare  that  had so long disgraced
their islands.     A  visit was made  to
the fatal spot where Capt.  Cook was
murdered.   The natives were at much
pains to   produce   reasons    for  this
catastrophe and to shew that it fulfilled  the prophecies    of the priests
who   had   foretold   it.      Before   the
party left the  island     the Sovereign
desired that a superb cloak of yellow
feathers  which   he had worn   in his
last battle for the sovereignty of the
island  might   be   presented  to   King
George.     Wherever    English   sailors
went at this time they appear to have
spread  the   fame of their sovereign,
King George, so    much so that they
came to be known by the natives of
the   places   they   visited   as   "King
George men."    As usual, surveys and
observations were made, and on 9th
March  the ships sailed   for   Mowee,
where Vancouver again devoted himself assiduously to promoting a peace
between the inhabitants  of this  and
the neighbouzring islands.   The poverty of this  island   was very marked,
and no   wonder, after a  war lasting
eleven years.    One of the chiefs produced   to Vancouver  a lock   of   the
latter's   hair  which had   been  given
fourteen or fifteen years before when
Cook was at the island and which had
been treasured ever since.   The fame
of the fireworks having reached the natives they requested a display,
which was given. From here the
Chatham was sent back to Nootka
for 'repairs. The Discovery next made
for Waohoo with one of the Chiefs
from Mowee on board to aid in bringing to justice the surviving murderers of the Captain and Astronomer
of the Dcedalus. Three men were delivered up, and after all the available
evidence of their guilt had been carefully sifted they were publicly executed. Surveys of the island were
made, presents bestowed on the
chiefs, and the usual display of fireworks was " regarded with a degree
of awful surprise not before observed." After sailing round Attowai
and Onehow this visit to the Sandwich Islands was concluded on 30th
March, 1793.
Nootka was again reached on 20th
May, and finding that the Chatham
had departed two days before, the Discovery proceeded to the North West
and overtook the Chatham in Fitz-
hugh's Sound between the -mainland
and Calvert's Island. While necessary repairs were being made to the
Discovery the coast was examined by
two boat parties. An. inlet branching
from the Sound into the continent
was named Burke's Canal after the
Right Hon. Edmund Burke, and an
island on its western side was named
King's Island after Capt. Jas. King
of the navy. The ships again sailed
northward on 10th June.
Muscle Canal, Poison Cove and
Carter's Bay (to the east of Princess
Royal Island) owe their names to the
death of a seaman named Carter by
poisoning through eating mussels.
Several other men were poisoned, but
The navigation of the channel
which led into Milbank's Sound was
found to be extremely intricate and
tedious, on one occasion the Discovery only gaining half a mile in
four hours. The south east point of
the entrance into Milbank's Sound
was named Cape Swaine after the
3rd Lieutenant of the   Discovery.
The course now taken lay between
the continent and Princess Royal
Island. The extensive inlets to the
north of that island were examined,
among the names given in this
neighbourhood being. Gardner's Canal, after Sir Alan Gardner, and Hawkesbury's Island after Lord Hawkesbury,
who subsequently became Lord Liverpool. About the 2nd July the ships
anchored near the Isle de Gil at
the north-west corner of Princess
Royal Island. From that point a
boat expedition explored a channel
running north-west, which was named
Grenville's Canal, after Lord Grenville. The land on the south-west
side of this channel was named
Pitt's Archipelago, after the Right
Hon. William Pitt; and an island
at the northern end, Stephens Island,
after Sir Philip Stephens of the
Admiralty. An inlet into the mainland to the north-east of Pitfs Archipelago was called Port Essington.
All these names still survive. "The
opening called by Vancouver "Port
Essington" is now the Skeena
River and "Port Essington " is a
settlement just within its estuary.
Near the mouth of this river now
stands the town of Prince Rupezrt, the
terminus of the Grand Trunk Pacific-
Railway,* which carries passengers
from the Atlantic to the Pacific over
3,600 miles of Canadian territory,
and from Prince Rupert regular
passenger steamers ply to Vancouver
city by the course so far taken by
the expedition through Grenville
Channel. On the 14th July the ships
left their anchorage with the object
of proceeding (towards the ocean
through Nepean Sound, and then
morflhJwestwaird through the Canal
del Principe between Bank's Island
and Pitt's Archipelago. North of
Stephens Island, three English vessels engaged in the fur trade were
met with and Vancouver says "the
satisfaction arising from meeting
with our fellow countrymen in sucn
distant regions of the globe was very
mutual on this occasion.** The opening from Chatham's Sound running
between Stephens Island and another named Dundas's Island (after
the Right Hon. Henry Dundas) was
designated Brown's passage, after the
commander of these three trading
vessels. Mr. Brown told Vancouver
that he had heard from the natives
of an opening in the continent which
led to a very considerable inland
navigation. Coming to a channel,
north-east of Dundas*s Island, which afterwards he named Observatory
Inlet, Vancouver hoped he had reached the inlet referred to. He sailed
some distance up this channel and
anchored at a spot which he called
Salmon Cove. He now took charge
of a surveying party, which iri
twenty-three days (traversed 700 geographical miles without, as he disappointedly says, "having advanced
our primary object of tracing the
continental boundary more than
twenty leagues from the station of
the vessels." In that excursion he
explored and named Portland Canal
(afftier the Bentinck family), proceeded north up a Channel which he
named Behzm's Canal (in gratitude
to Major Behm for his kindness to
the officers and crews of the Resolution and Discovery in 1779) and
rounded the island which he named
after the viceroy of New Spain
"Revilla Gigedo."
On returning southward the party
was treacherously attacked by a party
of natives on the west coast of this
island. Two of the crew were wounded, but the Indians were easily dispersed by a discharge of firearms.
This attack was quite unexpected,
as hitherto the natives had been
always friendly and tractable. A
small opening still named "Traitors'
Cove I commemorates this affray. An
interesting place name is Ithat of
■ Point Nelson " in Behzm's Canal,
"after Captain Nelson of the Navy,"
as we have here probably the first instance of a place being named after
the future Admiral. The ships were
reached again On 16th August, to
the great zrelief not only of the boat
crews, whose provisions were nearly
ran out, but also of those left on the
ships. Vancouver remarks on his
return, "such were the perplexing,
tedious, and laborious means, by
which alone we were enabled by degrees to trace the north-western
limits of the American continent."
Some important astronomical and
nautical observations having been
made in his absence led him to bestow the name we have already referred to of Observatory Inlet. The
west point of the inlet was named
Point Wales, after Mr. Wales, of
Christ's Hospital, and the east Point
Maskelyne,    after    the    Astronomer
mm. Royal, the Rev. Nevil Maskelyne,
who from 1782 to 1811 was the nonresident Rector of North Runcton,
two miles from King's Lynn. On
leaving the inlet the ships proceeded
to the north-west and the next place
of anchorage was named Port Stewart, on the east coast of what is now
known as Cleveland Peninsula. As
usual, exploring parties were despatched. One made a further examination of Behm's Canal, while another went northward through
Prince Ernest's Sound and rounded
the group of islands, the principal of
which are now called Zarenbo, Etolin
and Wrangell, but which was originally named after the Duke of York.
On leaving Port Stewart the ships
continued a north-westerly course up
the Strait which was named after
the Duke of Clarence. The land to
the west of the strait was named
Prince of Wales's Archipelago. Aftei
devoting a short time to surveying
the coast north of this Archipelago,
it was decided not to go further north
this year. Vancouver says that although by no means satisfied with
the small extent in a direct line
which had' been examined during the
summer, yet he derived consolation
in reflecting that in all probability
they had overcome the most arduous
part of their task and, further, that
there could no longer remain a
doubt as to the extent or fallacy of
the pretended discoveries by De Inica.
On 22nd September the Duke of
Clarence's Strait (the entrance to
which is now known as Summer
Strait) was left, and once again the
ships turned towards the south.
Sailing along the western side of
Queen Charlotte's Islands, giving
names on the way to North Point,
Frederick Point (now Frederick.
Island), Cartwrighfe Sound, Engle-
field Bay and other points, on calling
again at Nootka it was found that
no intelligence had been received
either from Europe or New Spain.
The Chatham now proceeded tto
Bodega to obtain further information
respecting that port, while the Discovery went on to St. Francisco.
When joined at the latter port by
the Chatham the two ships sailed for
Monterrey, and on the way fell in
with the Doedalus laden with stores for them. A south-easterly course-
was steered along the coast of .New
Albion, careful observations of the
shore being made on the way. At
St. Barbara, the cozmlmandant allowed supplies of wood and water to
be obtained, and furnished the expedition with cattle and other stores.
The examination of the coast was
finished on 14th December, 1793, at
the 30th degree of north latitude near
St. Domingo. Remarking on the
scattered Spanish settlements and
Catholic missions along the coast,.
Vancouver says: "The Spaniards, in
doing thus much, have only cleared
the way for the ambitious enter-
prizers of those maritime powers-
who may seek to be benefited by
the advantages which the fertile
soil of New Albion "seems calculated
to afford"; and, after pointing out
how the Spaniards had stocked the
country with an abundance of cat*
tie, had pointed out fertile spots,
introduced valuable vegetables and"
proved which were suitable for
growth there, and also how the missionaries had weaned a large proportion of the natives from their uncivilised savage way of life, he goes on
to say that " all these circumstances
are valuable consideratiozns to new
masters, to whose power, if properly
employed, the Spaniards would have
no alternative but that of submissively yielding. That such an event
should take place appears by no
means to be very improbable. The
advantages that have already been
derived and are likely still to
accrue, in the prosecution of a well-
conducted trade, between this coast
and (China, India, Japan and other
places, may on some future day,
under a judicious and well-regulated
establishment, become an object of
serious and important consideration
to that nation which shall be inclined to reap the advantages of such
a commerce." These are the words
of a far-seeing man. The country
is now held by an English-speaking
nation, and Spain is only represented
by the names given during her feeble
occupation, while the commerce between this coast and the Eastern
hemisphere surpasses anything that
Vancouver could have ever dreamed
1794 —Third visit  to   the   Sandwich
Islands and conclusion   of   the
Survey of the Coast of  North-
West America.
The ships, on leaving New Albion,
sailed again for Owhyhee, which was
reached on: 9th Jan., 1794.   The King
*nd  hig subjects were   delighted  by
this further visit, and it   is evident
that Vancouver was extremely popular
with them.   He had won their confidence, and though firm in his dealings
and rigorously insistent on the honesty of  the   natives,  he made   them
see that he was wishful only for their
good.     The fruits of this treatment
were very apparent.     The wants of
the expedition were readily supplied,
and all such offices of kindness as the
Englishmen stood  in  need  of   were
executed by the natives "with such
promptitude  and  cheerfulness   as  to
indicate that they   considered   their
labours amply repaid by our acceptance of their services.**     A further
proof of their goodwill was the  permission given to attend their religious
ceremonies.   But the most important
evidence of the trust which the natives
reposed in Vancouver is the fact that
they   voluntarily   acknowledged   the
■sovereignty of King George over their
island.     The    following    inscription
•on copper recozrding this act was deposited in a conspicuous place at the
royal residence: " On the 25th of February,  1794,  Tamaahmaah,   king    of
Owhyhee, in council with the principal
chiefs   of   the   island   assembled   on
board His Britannic Majesty's   sloop
Discovery in Karakakooa bay, and in
the  presence  of  George   Vancouver,
commander of the said sloop; Lieutenant Peter  Puget, commander of his
said Majesty's armed tender the Chatham;  and the other officers  of   the
Discovery;   after   due   consideration,
unanimously ceded the said island of
Owhyhee to His   Britannic   Majesty,
and acknowledgd themselves to be sub- jects of Great Britain." This cession
was never confirmed by the English
Government. The stay at Owhyhee,
much to the regret of the natives, was
brought to a close on 3rd March, ahd
after devoting eleven more days to
the examination of other islands in
the group, sail was made northwardly.
On 12th April the'Discovery reached
Cook's River, Alaska, and the examination of the shores was proceeded
with. Finding that this opening was
only an extensive arm of the sea, its
name was changed from Cook's River
to' Cook's Inlet, and Vancouver remarks that "had the great and first
discoverer of it, whose name it bears,
dedicated one day more to its further
examination, he would have spared the
theoretical navigators, who have followed him in their closets, the task
of ingeniously ascribing to this arm
of the ocean a channel, through
which a north-west passage, existing
according to their doctrines, might
ultimately be discovered." Considerable anxiety for the safety of the
ship was caused at times by the
drifting ice and rapid currents.
By the 15th the examination of the
inlet was completed and sail was made
for Prince William Sound, east of
Cook's Inlet. The 16th was ushered
in by a sight little expected in these
seas, not less than 200 skin canoes,
each carrying two Indians, visiting
the ships. These natives were almost
all men grown, so the tribe to which
they belonged must have been a considerable one. Some bartering wa-f
done with these natives who, like all
the others- lately seen, "conducted
themselves with great propriety."
The examination of Prince William's
Sound occupied the expedition until
16th June and the Sound "proved to
be a branch of the ocean that requires the greatest circumspection to
navigate." The delineation given in
the account of Capt. Cook's last voyage was found to be faulty in some
very important particulars, and Vancouver attributes, many of these
errors to the Editor of the History of
the Voyage.   In   addition to trouble
_S3 from the treacherous shoals and rocks
some very violent storms were encountered, and these did considerable
damage to the rigging and sails.
Russians engaged in collecting furs
were seen at various points along the
coast, which was very sparsely inhabited by Indians. Port Etches on
Hinchinbrook Island at the entrance
to the Sound was left on the 20th
June. Contrary winds made the progress eastward very slow and Kaye's
island was not passed till the 26th.
The southern point of this island was
given the name of Cape Hamond
after Sir Andrew Snaps Hamond,
who distinguished himself in the
American war and who from 1794 to
1806 was Comptroller of the Navy.
Sir Andrew purchased an estate at
Terrington, near Lynn, and his house
there is still called "Hamond Lodge."
A low projecting point of land in
lat. 59p 47' and long. 219* 17', passed
on 1st July, was called point Manby,
after the master of the Chatham. On
the 3rd a strange sail was seen eastward. This proved to be the "Jack-
all," commanded by a Mr. Brown,
from whom startling accounts of the
state of Europe were received. The
tidings of the death of Louis XVI., of
the anarchy in France, her declaration
of war against England, the attempts
which the discontented were making
in Great Britain by the promulgation
of French doctrines to subvert our
inestimable constitution, "breaking as
it were from a cloud upon the minds
of persons so little prepared to receive them," became the subjects of
most serious and painful reflection for
our voyagers.
Cape Fairweather was passed on the
6th, and on the 7th the entrance to
Cross Sound was reached. The west
point of the entrance was named
Cape Spencer in honour of Lord Spencer. A place of anchorage was found
on the east side of the harbour, and
named Port Althorp, for a station
while the examination of the inlet woe
being made, and here the Chatham
(which had been despatched from
Prince Williams Sound to survey the <oast as far as Port Mulgrave) joined
the Discovery again. The principal
•surveying party working its way into
the Sound found that the main channel (which was given the name of
Chatham's Strait) brought them again
into the ocean. The detached land
on the west of Chatham Strait was
named George Ill's. Archipelago. Several arms branched off from the main
channel, and to" one of these, running
northward into the continent, Vancouver has given particular interest
by the names he connected with it.
The arm or branch itself he called
Lynn Canal " after 'the place of my
nativity, the town of Lynn in Norfolk," while the, point at the entrance
to it he named Point Gouveiden " after
the seat of my ancestors." About midway, on the east side of the canal,
is a bay which he designated "Ber-
ners Bay" and its southern -corner
" Point Bridget," after his mother's
family and Christian names, while
the northern corner he named "Point
St. Mary's," after, no doubt, the
home of his mother's family, the parish of Wiggenhall St. Mary the Virgin being always referred to locally as
" St. Mary's." The party had a narrow escape from some apparently
peaceable and friendly, but really
hostile, Indians, whose artful character caused one place to be named
"Point Seduction," while "Point Retreat** marked the place to which the
party retired after their unpleasant
encounter with the natives. Although
the inland navigation round King
George HI's Archipelago was good
it was incommoded, and in some
places nearly closed, by large fragments of floating ice, and this decided
Vancouver not to take the ships that
way, but to pursue hie route by the
ocean, which would also allow him to
delineate the exterior coast. Accordingly, on 29th July, he sailed * southward along the shore, and on 1st
August anchored in Christians Sound,
the southern entrance to Chatham's
Strait. From this station two partie-a
were despatched. By the 19th the
work  of surveying was finished, the work of the present season being connected with that of the two preceding
years; and to commemorate this the
harbour where the ships were anchored was named Port Conclusion. Many
names which still find a place on the
map of the neighbourhood were given
at this time. An island directly south
of Lynn Canal was called Admiralty
Island, and the waterway on the east
side of it Stephen's Passage. The
channel south of the island and connecting Stephen's Passage with Chatham Strait was named Prince Frederick Sound In Stephen's Passage we
have quite a number of Norfolk
names. Port Snettisham, Point An-
mer, Holkham Bay, Port Houghton
are all named after villages not far
from Vancouver's birthplace, while
Points Styleman, Coke, Astley, Wind,
ham, Hobart and Walpole commemorate well-known Norfolk families. The
uncommon name of Vandeput which
was given to a promontory on the
north coast of Prince Frederick's
Sound raises some speculation as to
whether it had any family connection
with Vancouver. Peter van de Put,
an affluent London merchant in the
middle of the 17th century, married
a daughter of Dierick or Theoderick
Hoste, of London, merchant, and of
Sandringham, near King's Lynn. Both
families were of Dutch extraction, as
Vancouver also was. The Hoste family, who owned the SandTingham estate for about 150 years, originally
came to England to escape from the
persecutions of the Duke of Alva in
the Netherlands. Peter van de Pufs
mother was Sarah Jaupine, the daugh.
ter of another refugee, while his sister and a daughter were both named
Sarah. George Vancouver's grandmother and one of his sisters also
bore that name. It seems therefore
possible that Point Vandeput may
have been so designated because Vancouver's grandmother was a descend-
ent of the family of that name.
The adjacent continent north westward from New Cornwall (named in
the previous year) to Cross Sound was
called New Norfolk, and in the name of and for His Britannic Majesty, his.
heirs and successors, possession of the
continent from New Georgia, north
westward to Cape Spencer at the entrance to Cross Sound, was taken with
colours displayed, boats' crews drawn
up under arms, three volleys of musketry, and all the other formalities-
usual on such occasions, not forgetting a double allowance of grog for the
purpose of drinking His Majesty's
health. This tract of country forming
part of the Province of Alaska is not
now British territory. It gradually
fell under the dominance of the Russians, and they disposed of their
rights to the United States in 1867.
Vancouver now concluded that the
surveying work of the expedition had
at length been completed, and that
the precision with which the survey
had been carried into effect would
■ remove every doubt and set aside
every opinion of a north-west passage
or any water communication navigable for shipping, existing between
the North Pacific and the interior of
the American continent, within the
limits of our researches." A sidelight,
showing that the quest for this passage had been ever in the minds of
the voyagers,is tue mention that when
the last two exploring parties had
met and were resting in the evening
before returning to the ships, "no
small portion of facetious mirth passed
amongst the seamen, in consequence
of our having sailed from old England on the first of April for the purpose of discovering a north-west passage, by following up the discoveries
of DeFuca, De Fonte, and a numerous
train of hypothetical navigators." CHAPTER   VIII.
1794—1795.    End op the Voyage.
The  two ships departed from Port
-Conclusion  on the  22nd   August for
Nootka    Sound,    which   was   reached on 2nd September. Here Vancouver
was grieved by the intelligence that
Sen;. Quadra had died in the month
of March.   Once again he records his
admiration,    gratitude    and     respect
for the late Spanish Governor's eon-
•duct   towards   the   English   and   his
" deepest regret for the loss of a character so amiable and  so truly ornamental to civil society." It was found
•that no instructions had arrived from
•either the  Spanish   or   the    English
Governments for   dealing   with   the
-deadlock  in which   the   negociations
had ended.    Partly to enable  many
necessary repairs to be   done to the
vessels and partly with the hope that
•despatches    might   yet   be   received,
the departure from   Nootka  was delayed for some time.   This hope was
not,  however,   fulfilled,   and^ on  the
17th October the ships   again sailed
-southward.    At Monterrey Vancouver
was again disappointed at finding no
despatches.       The   acting   Governor
kindly sent an extraordinary courier
to St.  Diego, more   than   400   miles
distant,   to   ascertain    whether    any
had  been received there, but  he returned without any.   While the ships
were at Monterrey the long-expected
instructions   from the  Spanish  Government   arrived,   but    none    came
from England.    The Spanish instructions stated that no further altercation   would take   place  with   respect
to the precise  meaning  of the first
article of the convention, as the respective   Courts   had adjusted   that
matter in  an   amicable    way,    and
nearly on the terms repeatedly offered
by Vancouver to Quadra in Septem-
T»r, 1792.     Having maturely considered this intelligence Vancouver concluded that his government did  not
expect he should remain away longer
than the survey  of the coast might
require.     His stores   and  provisions
were also in a very exhausted state,
—for some time he had been obliged,
owing to  his stock   of powder being
low, to ask that the firing of salutes at the place of call might be dispensed with. He therefore determined to make for home by way of
Cape Horn.
On the way South, every opportunity was taken advantage of to fix
the position of important promontories on the main land. The Isles,
of Cocos and Gallipagos were visilted,
four days being spent at the former.
Some attention was given to this
island, which it was thought might
become " a place of importance to
those whose pursuits may direct them
to this part of the Pacific Ocean,"
furnishing as it did a supply of
good water, fuel, cocoanuts and other
stores. Two days were celebrated by
the usual " extra allowance of grog "
and "an excellent dinner," one being
Christmas Day, 1794, and the other
the anniversary of the departure
from Falmouth and the commencement of the fifth year of their
labours. The springing of the Discovery's main mast made it necessary
that the ship should repair to the
nearest port for the purpose of procuring a new mast. Valparaiso was
the port chosen, and the warm welcome given by the Governor and residents left no cause to regret the
visit. With a plentiful allowance of
fruit and vegetables some scorbutic
patients were soon restored to health.
An excursion was made to the capital
city St. Jago by invitation of the
President and Captain General of the
kingdom of Chili, Don Ambrosio Higgins de Vallenar, whose fluency in
speaking English excited the visitors'
astonishment until they learned that
he was a native of Ireland, who had
entered the service of His Catholic
Majesty. At St. Jago, which had then
about 30,500 inhabitants, Vancouver
and the officezrs who accompanied him
were overwhelmed with hospitality
by the President, officials and other
residents, and the Englishmen were
somewhat embarrased in having to
attend, in their threadbare uniforms,
a Levee at the Palace. They were,
however, soon put at ease by the
friendly Captain-General, whose government is spoken of by Vancouver
in the highest praise. This brilliant
Irishman, whose genius Vancouver
recognised, had not then attained his
highest  office.     "The realms   of  fic-
■ _■ tion," says a recent writer, " can
surely produce nothing more marvellous than the career" of this remarkable man, "the greatest British,
subject that had ever set foot in
South America." Ambrose 0' Higgins, born in 1720, in County Meath,
the son of a farmer, was as a boy
employed in menial work in the house
of his father's landlord. An uncle,
who was a priest in Spain, undertook to train the boy for the Church.
Ambrose, however, after studying for
some time, decided to emigrate to
America. He landed at Buenos Aires
with a small stock of merchandise.
Later on he was at Lima, in Peru,
selling his wares from a stall near
the Cathedral. He did well by his
trading and settled down in Santiago.
He then entered the service of the
Government and soon displayed talents which rapidly brought him into
prominence. He was employed in improving the roads of the country; he
led expeditions against the hostile
Indians, whom, after conquering, he
actually induced to assist in his work,
and to live in friendly intercourse
with the Spaniards; he provided new
water supplies, improved the sanitary conditions of the towns and carried out a host of important reforms.
He was created Marquis of Osorno
and made Captain-General of Chile in
1792, and this was his position at
the time of Vancouver's visit in 1795.
In the following year he was promoted to be Viceroy of Peru, the
highest position in South America
and one which has been compared
with the present day ViceroyaFty of
India. At Lima, the Capital, where
he had formerly stood with his stall
before the Cathedral, he ruled Peru,
wisely and well, for five years until
his death in 1801.
In remedying the defect which had
led to the ships stopping at
Valparaiso the voyagers were not so
fortunate, for there was not a spar
either there, or in the country within
reach, of a size sufficient to be converted into a mast and the expedient
had to be adopted of turning the old
mast end for end, bringing the most
defective parts below the deck and
making it as secure as their means
allowed. This was only a sorry makeshift  and   it was   with  not   a little anxiety that Vancouver proceeded on
his way. Four year's hard wear had
wrought sad havoc on the ships and
with a main yard in three pieces,
split sails and badly worn ropes, the
utmost care had to be exercised in
navigating the ships during some
strong gales which they soon encountered.
After rounding Cape Horn in the
last days of May, 1795, the ships
made for St. Helena, which was seen
from the Discovery on 2nd July.
The Chatham arrived next day, having kept up her reputation for slow
sailing on the return journey. Learning there that hostilities had broken
out between England and Holland,
Vancouver promptly took possession
of a Dutch East Indiaman as a
prize. The Chatham was sent off
about ten days later with despatches
to the British General at St. Salvador, Brazil. The Dutch prize having been committed to the charge of
Lieut. Johnstone, the Discovery, with
spars, sails and rigging repaired,
leBtl St. Helena on 15th July. Although Vancouver had been informed
that the National Assembly of France
had decreed that the Discovery and
Chatham should pass the seas unmolested by the French cruisers,
notwithstanding the existing war
between the two countries, it
was a great relief to him when he
came up with a fleet of ships under
the convoy of H.M. ship Sceptre.
Three weeks later he records that
"from our masthead the glad tidings were announced that land was
plainly to be seen." This land was
the Western coast of Ireland, and
the fleet anchored in the Shannon on
12th September, 1795. Resigning the
command of the Discovery to his first
Lieut., Mr. Baker, Vancouver next
day took leave of his officers and
crew, "not, however, without emotions which, though natural, on
parting with a Society with whom I
had lived so long, shared so many
dangers, and from whom I had received such essential services, are yet
more easily to be imagined than I
have the power to describe." A few
days afterwards he deposited the
books, papers and charts relating to
the voyage at the Admiralty. The
Discovery arrived in the Thames  on 20th October, 1795, while the Chatham
reached England three days earlier.
In closing the record of his long
voyage in the Discovery, lasting as it
had four years eight months and 29
days, Vancouver, reflecting on the
dangerous service and the many perils
passed through, says: "I offered up
my unfeigned thanks to the Great
Disposer of all human events for the
protection He had been pleased on all
occasions to vouchsafe unto us and
which had now happily restored us
to our country, our families and our
friends." And truly there was much
to be thankful for when it is considered that out of about one hundred
and fifty men on the two
ships, one only had been lost
by disease and five from accidents, and that (with one exception)
all who (returned were in perfect
health. This one exception stands
out whenever reference is made to
the good health of the voyagers all
through the years 1794 and 1795. The
constitution of Vancouver himself
had been seriously undermined by
the hardships of his calling. He had
not been well enough to take much
part in the surveying expeditions of
1794. On one occasion he says that,
considering himself sufficiently recruited, he determined to take
charge of a surveying party, but after
a few hours he was obliged to return
to the ship and was confined for several days to his apartments. The Muster Books of the Discovery
and Chatham show that besides Vancouver there were at least nine Norfolk men on the two ships. There
may have been more, as the place
of birth % not always given. Five
of the nine were connected with
Spelman Swaine was born there
on 1st Jan., 1769, being the second
son of Spelman Swaine, of Levering-
ton, Cambs., by his marriage with
Dorothy, daughter of Walter Robertson, Mayor of Lynn in 1747 and 1761.
Arthur Young, the famous traveller
and agriculturist, who was apprenticed for three years to Mr. Robertson, and who afterwards married
Miss Allen, a sister of Dr. Burney's
second wife, refers in his autobiography to Miss Robertson, saying
I She was of a pleasing figure, with
fine black expressive eyes, danced
well, and also sang and performed
well on the harpsichord; no wonder
as she' received instructions from Dr.
Burney." Spelman (Swaine the
younger entered the navy in 1782,
passed for lieutenant in 1791, and
was one of the master's mates oh the
Discovery when the expedition sailed.
He became master of the Chatham in
1792, and later in the same year third
lieutenant of the Discovery. After
the completion of the voyage he served in several. ships, obtainins: his
captain's commission in 1810. From
1834 to. 1848 (when he died at Wisbech)
he acted as Chief Bailiff of the Isle
of Ely, an appointment in the gift
of the Bishop. He was given the
rank of Rear-Admiral, retired, in
1846. Several curiosities collected by
him during the voyage are still exhibited in the Wisbech Museum.
Cape Swaine, Millbank Sound, was
named by Vancouver aftezn his
lieutenant. Thomas Manby, a native of Denver,
Norfolk, was the son of Matthew
Pepper Manby, by his wife Mary,
daughter of John Woodcock, of Lynn.
Members of the Manby family lived
at Lynn, and most likely Thomas
was a pupil at the Grammar School
there, as we know his brother
George William, the inventor of the
rocket life-saving apparatus, was.
Thomas Manby was at first a master's
mate on the Discovery. At the beginning of 1793 he was appointed
master of the Chatham, and in 1795
was moved hack to the Discovery
as acting lieutenant. The western
headland at the entrance to Yakutat
Bay (called by Vancouver Beering's
Bay), Alaska, was named Point Manby. In after years Manby commanded successiveljy the "Charon," the
" Bourdelaie," and the "Africane,"
doing good service in transporting
troops,convoying traders and cruising
against privateers.
The town of Langley, twenty
miles from the city of Vancouver, is said to be named
after John Langley, a marine on the
Discovery, who settled in Lynn as an
innkeeper and recruiting sergeant.
He is mentioned in J. D. Thew's
" Recollections" as one of the characters of the town. Some of his
descendants are still living in
Among the A.Bs. we have John
Massingham and William Gamble, of
Lynn, John Rycraft, of Yazrmouth,
John Allen, John Willis and Samuel
Manning, who are given as of Norfolk. The last-named was made
boatswain's mate on 4th March, 1791.
Poor Sam must have celebrated his
promotion very unwiely, for on the
10th he was punished for drunkenness. The nature of his punishment
is not stated, but for a similar offence another culprit was given three
dozen  lashes.
Several officers of the expedition
did good service and in after years
obtained high rank. e Zachary Mudge, lieutenant of the
Discovery whose name was given to
a cape in the Gulf of Georgia, became an Admiral.
Peter   Puget,   another    lieutenant,,
after whom. Puget Sound was named,
Jbecame a C.B. and  a Rear-Admiral.
William Robert Broughton, commander of the Chatham, who on a
later voyage made very accurate surveys of the coast of Japan and the
Loo Choo Islands, of which voyage he
published an account, became a C.B.
Joseph Baker, lieutenant, drew the
principal charts published with the
journal under the "immediate inspection" of Vancouver. Mount
Baker, in the Cascade range, named
after him, is the Mount Ararat of
Indian legend. His name was also
given to Baker Islands, Columbia
River, and Point Baker, Alaska. He
seems to have been held in high
esteem by Vancouver. He attained
the zriank of captain, and in 1811
was highly praised for services rendered in connection with the defeat
of the Danes at Anholt.
Archibald Menzies, naturalist and
surgeon, collected a large number of
plants during the voyage, some of
which are in the British Museum,
some at Kew, and others at Edinburgh. He published an account of
the voyage in Loudon's Magazine of
Natural History. The black spruce-
fir of British Columbia is named
after him "Abies Menziesii."
The Hon. Thomas Pitt (born 1775),
rated as A.B. on the Discovery, seems
to have been a troublesome and unruly lad. He had been three times
flogged before Vancouver, on 7th Feb.,
1794, for some act of insubordination,
took the drastic step of discharging
him from the ship, which was then
at Hawaii. Pitt had then, by the
death of his father in January, 1793,
become second Baron Camelford, and,
although this was not then known by
Vancouver, it speaks well for the
latter's fearlessness in maintaining
discipline that he did not hesitate to
expel a  youth  with  such influential family connection*-. If any justification for Vancouver's action were
needed it is supplied bfy the after
career of this quarrelsome nobleman.
Pitt reached Malacca on a trading
vessel, and there joined the "Resistance** as an able seaman. Soon afterwards he was appointed acting
lieutenant of the ship, but on 24th
Nov., 1795, was summarily discharged
and left to find hie way back to
England. Vancouver, after his arrival in England, was challenged by
Camelford to a duel, and he agreed
to accept the challenge if any flag
officer to whom the case might be
referred should decide that he owed
Camelford satisfaction. This reference Carftelford refused, and meeting Vancouver one day he attempted
to assault him, but was prevented
by some bystanders. In 1798, when
commanding the "Favourite" sloop,
Camelford shot dead the lieutenant
of another ship who, apparently with
good cause, disputed hi© claim to be
the senior officer at Antigua, where
both ships were. For this, Camelford
was tried and, unaccountably, acquitted. His next escapade was the
planning of an expedition to obtain
a set of French charts. On being
arrested* and having his conduct disapproved by the Admiralty, he requested that his name might be struck
off the list of Commanders, and this
was done. In 1799, for knocking a
man downstairs at a theatre, he was
fined J&OO, and in February, 1804, he
was engaged in another theatre quarrel and fight. A duel on 7th March,
1804, with a Mr. Best, whom he had
grossly injsulted, resulted in the
death, three days later, of this pugnacious peer. Grenville'e Canal, between the mainland and Pitt*s ArchL
pelage, and Point Grenville on the
New Albion Coast, were named by
Vancouver after Lord Grenville (a
cousin of Wm. Pitt, the great Prime
Minister), who married Anne Pitt, a
sister of the second Bartvn Camel-
fcTd. Lord Grenville, before his
elevation to the- peerage, was successively Speaker of the House of
Commons and Foreign Secretary. He was Premier in 1806, his administration being known as that of "all the
talents." He belonged to the family
of Grenville of Wotton, Bucks., a
younger branch of the Grenvilles of
A charge which has been made
against Vancouver that his discipline
was unnecessarily harsh seems to rest
entirely on this case of Thos. Pitt,
Lord Camelford. We have to remem.
ber that flogging was a common punishment in the navy at this time,
and the commander of such an expedition as this, thrown as he was
on his own resources for several
years, could not afford to overlook
any breach of discipline. But though
he may have been very strict, Vancouver's journal shows that he took
a fatherly interest in his men and
was always ready to recognise any
good work done by them. When a
boat surveying party is absent longer
than expected he is full of anxiety
and apprehension. The brewing of
"excellent spruce beer" and the celebration of notable days were no doubt
all meant to keep the crews in a
cheerful humour. Never grudging
in his praises, he speaks in one passage of the "consolation derived on
all painful occasions by having the
most explicit confidence in the discretion and abilities of my officers
and the exezrtions and ready obedience of My people.'*
In his dealings with the natives,
Vancouver was always guided by a
charitable consideration for their
feelings and customs, and here his
character compares most favourably
with that of Capt. Cook, whose cruelty
and hypocrisy, there is little doubt,
caused the brawl in which he lost
his life. Even when one of his
parties is attacked he advances as a
possible excuse that the natives may
have been previously defrauded by
dishonest traders, as he found some
had been. On another occasion he
refuses to allow a coffin to be opened
ot disturbed for fear of giving pain
to  the  friends  of  the   deceased.   At one place where he called for wood
and water and found a poor empty
dwelling, he "caused to be deposited,
near the watering place, some beads,
knives, . looking-glasses and other
trinkets, as a compensation to the
solitary owner, should he ever return, for the wood we had cut down."
At the end of hie journal he attests
that his sincere desire had always
been to deal in such a way as should
prevent the necessity of resorting to
measures which might endanger the
lives of the Indians, and after residing, as it werSj amongst them for
more than two years without having
occasion to fire a shot in anger, he
had hoped to have completed his researches' without the lose of life to
a single individual belonging to the
countries visited. In this, however,
he was, as we know, disappointed.
The number of Indians from Traitors'
Gove who fell in the unprovoked1 attack on 12th August, $798, could not
be ascertained^ but with this excep-
tion only two natives afterwards lost
their lives in consequence of the expedition. A missionary to the Sandwich (now known as the Hawaiian)
Islands about 30 years ago says that
thez natives loathed the memory of
Cook, while on the other hand they
loved that of Vancouver, and a cow-
respondent at Honolulu, the capital
of these islands, says "Vancouver
was the best friend the Hawaiians
had among the earlier visitors, and
did' much to enable Ramfehameha to
'unite the groups in onw kingdom and
put an end to the constant internecine
warfare that had existed for many
years  before the arrival of Cook."
The  museum   at  Honolulu   has  a
copy   of    Abbot's    portrait   labelled
thus:   "Georige  Vancouver,   English
navigator,  and   la  true    friend    to
Hawaiians." CHAPTER X.
The Spaniards finally evacuated
Nootka on 28th March, 1795, when the
British flag was hoisted there. This
event must have been very gratifying
to Vancouver, completing as it did
the work of his voyage. And here it
may be said that probably it is due
to his tact and firmness in the negoci-
ations with Quadra that Vancouver
Island and British Columbia now
form part of the British Empire, and
that had his work been followed up
at the time the Sandwich Islands and
the states of Washington and Oregon
might possibly also have been British possessions.
During his absence from England
Vancouver had been advanced, on
28th August, 1794, to post rank, prob-
,ably in recognition of his work as
shown by the despatches conveyed to
England by Broughton. After his -return he gave all his energies to the
preparation of the journal of the
voyage. This work is a continuous
record of the gallant sailor's wholehearted devotion to the tasks on
which he was engaged. His earnest
desire that his work should be done
a© accurately as possible is most
noticeable. Observations are compared and checked with scrupulous
care, and if an observation made by
Cook or some other voyager is found
to be inaccurate it is only corrected
after the closest investigation.
The surveying work undertaken
during the voyage was very extensive, including as it did the coast of
North West America from 30? north
(Lower California) to 60» north
(Cook's Inlet, Alaska), the Sandwich
Islands and part of the south-west
coast of Australia. A modern geographer says that Vancouver's survey was "se thorough and so accurate as
to be available to the present day.**
Another eminent authority, Professor Davidson, of the University of
•California, who was for more than
forty years engaged on the Pacific
coast with the U.S. Coast and
Geodetic Survey, gives his testimony
to the work in these words: "I have
.gone over every foot of the work
done by Vancouver on this coast and
I wish to say that he was a great
hig man."
Beyond the fact that he must have
worked industriously on his history
little is known of Vancouver's doings
in the two and a half years which
he lived after the completion of his
In April, 1798, worn out and a dying man, he took up his residence at
the famous "Star and Garter" Inn,
Richmond. It is said that on first
entering the Brewer zroom of the
Hotel he exclaimed, "In all my
travels I never clept eyes on a more
beautiful spot than this. Here would
I live and here would I die." On the
_8th of the same month he made a
■will by which after a legacy of .£25
to hie agent, Mr. Sykes, he gave to
his elder brother John the rest of
•his property, which was then "about
to be engaged in the purchase and
improvement of Ealing Manor in
Berks" subject to the payment of
fifty pounds per annum to hie brother
Charles and of twenty-five pounds per
annum to each of his sisters Sarah
and Mary Vancouver, and in the
event of his brother Charles dying
before both or either of hie sisters,
then the annuity of fifty pounds given
to Charles was to be equally divided
between his said two sisters. One
witness, as previously stated, was
Cranville Penn, and the other David
Dundas, most likely the eminent
physician of that name.
Twelve days later, on 10th May,
1798, the weather-worn sailor wa§
He was buried in the churchyard
of St. Peter's, Petersham, Richmond. Inside the church is a mural tablet
bearing the  following inscription:—
"In the Cemetery
adjoining this Church
were interred in the year 1798
the mortal remains of
Captain George  Vancouver, R.N.
whose   valuable  and enterprising
Voyage of Discovery
to the North Pacific  Ocean
round the World
during five years of laborious survey
added greatly
to  the  geographical  knowledge
of  his countrymen.
To the memory
of that celebrated navigator
this monumental tablet
is erected by
The Hudson's  Bay  Company."
The grave outside is marked by a
severely plain headstone bearing the
simple record: "Captain George Van.
couver, died in the year 1798, aged 40."
Ealing Manor, which Vancouver
was apparently arranging to purchase,
is in the parish of Hampstead Norris,
near Newbury. To this he may have
been attracted by the fact that the
Partridge family had an estate in
the county, and also by his friendship with the Penns, whose seat was
at Stoke Park, just over the boundary of the neighbouring county of
Bucks. The proposed purchase was
never completed.
Until within a few weeks of his
death Vancouver was engaged in the
preparation of the journal. The first
two volumes were printed and more
than half the third. So far he had
examined the work and compared it
with the engraved charts of his discoveries. He had also prepared the
introduction and the remainder of
the third volume, with the exception
of about 100 pages. His brother John,
assisted by Captain Puget, completed
the work, which was published in
1798 at the expense of the Board of
Admiralty. It consists of three quarto
volumes illustrated  by  eighteen   en- gravlngs -with an accompanying folio
of ten charts and six sheets of coast
views. John Vancouver, in hie dedication to King George III., says he
trusts that, to the discoveries of Captain Cook, "the exertions of Captain
Vancouver will be found to have
added the complete certainty that,
within the limits of his researches On
the continental shore of North-West
America, no internal sea, or other
navigable communication whatever
exists, uniting the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans."
Sixty years later, when the northwest passage was discovered by Captain McClure's expedition, further
north than Vancouver had looked for
it, so far north, indeed, as to be commercially useless, another son of
Lynn, Samuel Gurney Cresswell, after
carrying home despatches for the Ad.
miralty, was welcomed in his native
town as "the Englishman who first
traversed the long sought north-west
An octavo edition of Vancouver's
journal in six volumes was published
in 1801. With this there was only
one general chart, the copper plates
from whch the charts accompanying
the first edition had been printed
having been lost in the meantime. An
illustrated French edition was published in three volumes, 1799-1800.
,J£1 the editions of the wprk are now
very scarce.
The National Portrait Gallery, Lon.
don, has a portrait ef Vancouver
painted soon after his return from
his long voyage, and described in'the
official catalogue as follows: " Painted
probably by Samuel F. Abbott (1760-
1803). A half length figure wearing
dark blue suit with gilt buttons and
a plain white neck cloth, seated towards the right. On a table to the
right lies a volume inscribed *Holy
Bible.' In the background arranged
en three shelves are books of voyages,
inscribed Cook's, Anson's, Magellan
and Drake. A red curtain is behind
to the left.   The terrestrial globe he- side him shows the North Pacific
Ocean, and a line across it is inscribed 'Cook's track.' Eyes dark
yellow grey, fair complexion, smooth
cheeks, red lips, double chin; eyebrows
broad, very dark, arched and remarkably short. Countenance rather
There is a copy of this portrait
in the Parliament Buildings at Victoria, British Columbia.
In King's Lynn but little attention has been paid to the career of
the great navigator, and until quite
recently very few indeed of the townsmen were even aware that it was
his birthplace. Thanks, however, to
the exertions of Mr. F. H. Partridge
a copy of Abbott's portrait was obtained for the Town Hall and unveiled by the Mayor on 17th December, 1914, when the following lines
were read by Mr. Partridge:
The  Vancouver Portrait.
Lynn,   who  has sent  so  many sons
to   fly
The flag  of Britain in far distant
Has ever shown a parent's modesty
In   careless   disregard    of    Fame's
Loth   to make choice of   one   or of
As  more renown-deserving  than   his
No   doubt  she loved   them  all  and
took a pride
In their   achievements,  when  they
were recorded;
And   they,   her sons,    it  cannot   be
By gifts of Freedom were at times
This   done,  she   made  no1 more  ado
about them—
Those  who  received   no  praises  did
without them.
She  must have felt some interest in
Who,   through  home-sickness,    not
in conquest's boast,
Mindful of good beginnings  well begun, Scattered oor Norfolk names upon
a coast
Thousands  of   miles  away—Truly   a
Proud of his birth as an East Anglian.
Now many   pour  their blessings on
the name
Of George Vancouver, born in distant  Lynn;
And our old   Borough finds reflected
As source of their Columbia's origin.
His  name   stands  foremost,   on    her
hist'ry's   page,
And  Lynn  becomes  a   place  of pilgrimage.
" We^ln our thousands reverence your
"The  sturdy   founder  of   colonial
Says  fair  Columbia,   "Lynn,    what
have  you done
"To    keep    his    honoured    name
revered and bright" P
Lynn,   conscious  of   the  fame  that
should be his,
Replies "Not much I fear, but Here
It is a pity that the man' whose
name has been given to an important
island, to one city in Canada and to
another in the United States, should
not in his native town have been
commemorated by the naming of some
street or place. A good opportunity
is now offered to remedy this by the
making of the proposed new road
from the South Gate, which might
very well be called Vancouver Road.
Although attached to the profession
of arms, Vancouver was essentially
a man of peace. There was nothing
spectacular about his life, and his
death was not, like Cook's, a tragic
one. For many years no advantage
was taken of his discoveries. The
Napoleonic wars war© raging, and
the country was absorbed in so many
startling events nearer home. These
factors perhaps explain why his
carreer yafiter causing some passing
interest   at the  time of  his  return and1 death, soon ceased to attract,
attention. It is only in quite recent
years, consequent, doubtless, on the
growing importance of the land so*
intimately associated with his labours, that enquiries have been made
which have led to the disclosure of
the facts which are so far known.
As late a© 1907 Professor Meany, of
Washington, in his annotated reprint
of the first volume of the journal,
commenting on the scarcity of information on the subject, said "It is-
a matter of surprise to find how very
little is known of the man himself.
Brief biographies in the encyclopaedias keep his name from total
oblivion. Through all these nothing-
is said of his family or his personality, the place of his birth is not
mentioned, and even the exact date-
is unknown."
As time goes on, no doubt, further
information will be forthcoming. One
would like to know more about his
father's family. Did they, as has
been suggested, voluntarily immigrate into this country to assist in
work similar to what they had been
accustomed in their native Holland,
or were they refugees from the religious persecutions which drove so
many of their compatriots to the-
shores of England? About his
brothers and sisters, the information
is extremely scanty. John was living
in 1809, his wife having predeceased
him in 1807, leaving no children. His
brother Charles and his sisters Sarah
and Mary were evidently living at
the date of his will, the sisters being-
unmarried. Bridget, his eldest sis-
' ter, who is not mentioned in the will,
was married in 1774 at Grimston, Norfolk, to Christopher Dixon, of Snet-
For many years after George Vancouver's voyage and death the country bordering the shores of North-
West America was left to the trapper
and hunter. The whole of what is
now known as British Columbia was
ruled up to 1858 by the Hudson's Bay •Company, who discouraged settlers
in the country. Differences soon
arose with the United States, which
•claimed the land as far north a$ 54 9
40- N. The British Government resisted this claim. The difficulty was
tided over for a time by treaties in
1818 and 1827 providing for a joint
•occupation, but it was brought to a
head in 1846 by the United States
giving notice terminating this arrangement. Once again there was
talk of war about this piece of territory, but a compromise offered by
the British Government and accepted by the States settled the boundary
■along the 49th parallel and the centre
•of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. In
1849 the Hudson's Bay Company had
a grant of Vancouver Island for ten
.years and a Royal Governor was sent
out. The first elective Assembly for
the island met in 1856. The great
influx of miners consequent on the
-gold discoveries on the Fraser River
in 1858 made it necessary that a similar government should be set up
-on the mainland, the whole of which,
west of the Rocky mountains, was
therefore made a Crown Colony. The
name of British Columbia given to
■this colony was chosen by Queen Victoria. The two colonies were united
in 1866, and the final step of union
with the other provinces of Canada
was taken in 1871.
In this fagt progressing province
the memory of Captain George Vancouver is held in great veneration.
The spot where he met Senr. Quadra
-at Nootka is marked by a monument
bearing the following inscription:
"" Vancouver and Quadra met here in
August, 1792, under the treaty between
Spain and Great Britain of October,
1790. Erected by the Washington
University State Historical Society,
August,  1908."
The island with which Vancouver's
and Quadra's names were at first
jointly linked, and which owing to
the agreement of its latitude with
that of the mother country and its
similar relative position to  the   ad-    


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