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Narrative of the adventures and sufferings of John R. Jewitt; only survivor of the crew of the ship Boston,… Jewitt, John R. (John Rodgers), 1783-1821 1815

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SHIP BOSTON,        *
P    HEW   YORK:
PRINTED FOR.  THE  PUBLISHER. ^*iA^w»* ^*!*^S -^ Names of the Crew of the Ship Boston, belonging to
Boston in Massachusetts, owned by Messrs. F. fy T.
Jlmory, Merchants of that place—Jill of whom excepting two, were on the %%d of March, 1803, barbarously murdered by the Savages at Nootka.
John Salter,
B. DelotiWtea,
WilHam Ingraham,
Edviftrd Thompson,
Adam Siddle,
Philip Brown,
Abraham A$nter«,
Francis Duffiejd,
of Boston,
of New-York,
of Blyth, (England,)
of Hull,        Do.
of Cambridge, (Mass.)
of Scituate,        Do. *
of Philadelphia,
of Penton, (England,)
TOlfti Wilsony (blackman) of Virginia,
Wibiam Caldwell,
JHseph Miner,
Wimam Robinson,
ThdWras ^Vtffl&Hi,
Andrew Kelly,
RVibert Burton,
Ames M'Clay,
Thomas Platten,
Thomas. Newton,
Charles Bates,
John Hall,
Samuel Wood,
Peter AJstrom,
Francfsi ^Marten,
of Boston,
of Newburyport,
of Leigh, (Scotland,)
of Air, Do.
Do. Do.
of the Isle of Man,
of Dublin,
of Blakeney, Norfolk, Eng. Do*
of Hull, Do.   Do.
of St. James Deeping, Do.   Do.
of New-Castle, Do.   Do.
j6t Glasgow, (Scotland,)       Do.
Jupiter Senegal, (blackman)
John Thompson, !;7Th*ladelphia,
who escaped—since dead.
John R. Jewitt, of Boston, in England,      Armourer,
the writer of the Journal from* whence this Narrative is taken, and
who at present, July, 1815, resides in Middletown, in. the Slate of
>• Klontz-mah,
Ho >mn-hexa,
^#*iHs}4s<Hch ec k •
Tan? ssis-klnots<
Km k-a-nik-sa,
Tar-t >ose,
Cha hak,
Meet la,
K! tT-tnr-uriss, '
^ w;k,
Kk-k elth,
M il> h ick.
' Quart *^tk,
Coo-coo-h >-sa,
M )o-\vatcht
S >j&Wl
O -u'ha-pu,
•up, Son.
■mah,   Daughter.
Sun or Moon.-
Fresh water.
Mountain or hill.
Fire or f n J.
^ PS
Be »r.
Safin •»».
Hen hig,
Taih e.
A fish-hook.
Qhee-p< kes,
J Sweet or pleas
(   to the taste.
K'Ji -ker-yek,
Pook-sh it-tie,
Knife or dagger.
Goose or up k.
To. blow.
r* .   i .. ,1     f To kindle i
hen -a-oui-sliife-t-le, \     c
1 ' (     firp.
Ar-teese, To bathe.
*la-uiook-su-mah, To go *.o h&h.
Ar-smooti-h- ) «
,    , > A warrior,
check-up,    ,5
Cha-alt-see-klat- J Go o<T, or go
tur-wah, .   \   away.
Ma-kook, To sell.
Knh-uh-pah-chilt, < ' . .
1 ' I something.
How many.
I understand.
C I do not iiuder-
(     stand.
Fm-me-rhap, To piny.
Kle-whar,. To laugh.
Mac-kam- > ,x *
i    • i . t Do you want to buy.
mah-HMi,   y        J J
Kah-ah-coh, Bring it •
Sah wauk, One.
■Soo-jpw k,
Tin ec.
1 our.
■ S»x.
One huudied.
I was born in Boston, a ccnsiderable borough
to\1rn iii-Lincolnshire, in Great-Britain, on the 21st
of May, 1783. My father, Edward Jewitt, was
by trade a blacksmith', and esteemed among the
first in his line of business in that place. At the
age of three years I had the misfortune to lose my
mother, a most - excellent woman, who died in
cbild^bed, leaving an infant daughter, who, with
mys$f, pid an elder brother by a former marriage
of my father, constituted the whole of our family.
My father who considered a good education as the
greatest blessing he could bestow on his children,
was very particular in paying every attention to us
in that respect, always exhorting us to behave well,
and endeavouring to impress on our minds the
principles of virffie and morality, and no expense
in his power was spared to have, us instructed in
whatever might render us useful and respectable
in society. My brotifer, who was four years old-,
er than myself, and of a more hardy constitution,
he destined for his own trade, but to me:v he had
re^jpl^ed to give an education superior to that
wliMi is to be obtained in a common s||iool, it being 1® intention that I should adopt%>ne ofrM.e
learned professions. Accordingly at the age of
twelve he took me from the school in which I had
belli taught the fust raiments of learning, and •m
If 1
r S-ir 1
.     £■■ ;\i   '
•' i^H
placed me under the care of Mr. Moses, a celebrated teacher of an academy at Donnington,
about twenty miles from Boston, in order to be
instructed iti the Latin language, and in some ojfl
the higher branches of the Mathematics. I there
made considerable proficiency in writing, reading,
and arithmetic, and obtained a pretty good knowledge of navigation and of surveying; but my progress in Latin was slow, not only owing to the little inclination I felt for learning that language, but
to a natural impediment in my speech, which rendered it extremely difficult for me to pronounce
it, so that in a short time, with my father's consent, I wholly relinquished the study.
The period of m^T stay at this place was the
most happy of my life, jj My preceptor, Mr. Moses,
was not only a learned, but a virtuous, benevolent,
and amiable man, universally beloved by his pupils, who took delight in his instruction, and to
whom he allowed every proper amusement, that
consisted with attention to their studies.
One of the principal pleasures I enjoyed was
in attending the fair, which is regularly held twice
a year at Donnington, in the spring and in the fall;
the second day* being wholly devoted to selling
horses, Jtprodigious number of which are brought
thither .for^that purpose. As the scholars on thes?
occasions were always indulged*with a holiday, I
cannot express with what eargerness of youthful
expectation I used to anticipate these fairs^nor
what delight I felt at the various shows, exjiibWons
of wild beasts, and other entertainments that they
presented. I was frequently visited by my father,
who always discovered much joy on seeing me,
praised me for my acquirements, and u$uaB|Fleft
me a small sum for my pocket expenses.! JEWITT'S NARRiHTIVm
H|Among thfci scholars at thfi academy, there was
one namedflClikKte^^Rice, with whom I formed a
particular intimacy, which continued during the
whole of my stay. He wi$s my class and room
paate, and as the town he canife from, Ashby, was
more than sixty miles^toff, instead ofrreturning1
home, he used frequently during the vacation, to
go with me to Bos^n, where Ke always i^et with
a cordial welcome from my^father, wteo iriceiveM
me on 'these occasions with the greatest affection,
apparently! taking mueM pride^in me. \ My friend
ijireturn used to take me with him to-an Micle of
bis in Donrfcgton, a very wealtljy man, ^^p, hnf&*
ing no children of kis ®wti, wfcu^very fond of his
nephew, and on his account I tras always a weft-
come visitor^ the house. I hat& a good voice,
and an ear for music, to which I was afcways pa^
sionately attached, though my father iftuteavoured
to disc^irage this propensity, considering it, (as
kef too frequently -flie case) but an introduction ■%■£
is*life of idleness ftnd dissipation, and having be^S
remarked^for ray siiiging $jfc church, which ^as
regularly attended db Sundays and Fe^fiva^days
by the scholars^*'Mr. Morthiop, my Mend|J§lfeefs
uncle, used frequently to request me to 3iifl$?fhe
y$m alwkys pleased wWi my exhibitions erf this
kind, arid it'was no doubt one of the means that
ifcured me so gracious a reception at hillcteuse.
A numbed! of other gentlemen iS tto pla<li wW^
sometimes seiid foflrme to slflg at th^ houl^s,
and as I was not a little vain of rtffjr vocal powtas^
I was much gi?a$$fied on receiving thesef invitations, and accepted them with the greatest pleasure.
? Thus passed away the ttoo happiest years of my
life, when my father, thinking that fehad received
a suffidfeii education for the profession be intend* 10
jewitt s Narrative
ed me for, took me from school at Domlington in
order to apprentice me to Doctor Mason, a surgeon of Eminence at Reasby, in the neighbourhood of the celebrated Sir Joseph Banks. With
regret did I part from my school acquaintance,
particularly my friend Rice, and returned home
with my father, on a short visit to my family, preparatory to my intended apprenticeship. The
disinclination I ever had felt for the profession my
father wished me to pursue, was still further increased on my return. When a child I was always fond of being in the shop, among the workmen, endeavouring to imitate what I saw them do;
this disposition s6 for increased after my leaving
the academy, that I could not bear to hear the
least mention made of my being apprenticed to a
surgeon, and I used so many entreaties with my
father to persuade him to give up tMs plan and
learn me his own trade, that he at last consented*
More foWusrate would it probably have been for
me, had I gratified the wishes of this affectionate
J Parent, in adopting the profession he had chosen
or hie, than thus induced him to sacrifice thefti
to mile. However it might have*beei>, I was at
length introduced into the shop, and my natural
iilfrn of mind corresponding with the employment,
I became in a short time uncommonly expert at
the work to which I was set. I now felt myself
well contested, pleased with ray occupation, and
treated with much affection by my father and kindness by my step-mother, my father having once
more entered the state of matrimony, with a wid*
ow much yotdjger than himself, who had been
brought up in a superior manner, and was an ami*
able and sensible woman. t;"
||§iAb9u! a year alter t had commenced this ap* JEWITT S NAR&ATtVE.
fcrfenticeship, my father finding that he could carry
on his business to more advantage in Hull, removed thither with his family. Aii event of no little
importance to me, as it in a great measure influenced my future destiny.    Hull being one of the
pbest ports in England, and & place of great trade,
riy father had there full employment for his numerous workmen, particularly in vessel work.
This naturally leading me to ail acquaintance with
the sailors on board some of the ships, the many
remarkable stories they told tlid of thiir voyages
and adventures, and of the manners and customs
of the nations they had seeii, excited a strong
wish in me to visit foreign countries, which was
increased by my reading the voyages of Capt.
Cook, aid! some other celebrated navigators.
Thus passed the ||ur years that I lived at Hull,
where my father was esteemed by all who knew
him, as a worthy, industrious, aftd thriving man.
At this period a circumstance occurred which afforded me the opportunity I had for some time
| wished, of gratifying my inclination of going abroad,
p Among our principal customers at Hull, were
the Americans who frequented that port, and from
whose conversation, my father as well as myself
formed the most favorable opinion of that coun-
i try, as affording an excellent field for the exertions
of industry, and a flattering prospect for the establishment of a young man in life. In the summer
of the year 1802, during the peace between England and France, the ship Boston, belonging to
Boston, in Massachusetts, and commanded by
Capt. John Salter, arrived at Hull, whither she
came to take on board a cargo of such goods as
were wanted for the trade, with the Indians on the
North-West coast of America, from whence, aft<& I
jewitt's narrative*
- having taken in a lading of fur^and skins, she wras
to proceed to China, and from thence home to
America. The ship, having occasion for many
repairs and alterations, necessary for so long a
voyage, the ccptain applied to my father to do the
smith work, vvhich was very considerable. That
gentleman, who was of a social turn, used; often
to call at my father's house, where he passed ma-
_njf,of his evenings, with his chief ^nd^second
mutes, Mr. B. Delouisa, and Mr. William Ingra-
ham, the latter a fine yoiiog man of about twenty, j
of a most amiable temper, and of such affable
manners, as gained him the love and attachment
of our whole crew. These gentlemen used occa-
sionally to take me with them to the^|heatre, an
amusement which I was very fond of, and which
ray father rather encouraged than objected to, as
he thought it a good means of preventing^|ung
men wrho are naturally inclined to seek for something to amuse them, from frequenting taverns,
ale houses, and places of bad resort, equally destructive of the healtl&:and morals, while the stage
frequentlyffurnishes excellent lessons of morality
and good conduct.
' In the evenings that he passed at my father's,
Captain Salter, who had for a great number of
years been at sea, and seen almost all parts of the
world, used sometimes to sp$ak of his voyages,
and observing me listen with much attention to his
relations, he one day when I had brought him
some work, said to me in rather a jocose manner,
John, how should you like to go wi|h me? I answered that it would give me great, pleasure, that
I had for a longtime wished to visit foreign countries, partifetilarly America* whi(*h I had been told
so many fine stories of, aaiAhat if my father would JEWITT s NARRATIVE.
give lji| consent and he was willing to take me
with him, I would go. I shall be very glad to
do it, said he, if your father can be prevailed on
to let you go, and as I want an expert smith for
an armourer, the one 1 have shipped for that purpose not being sufficiently master of his trade, I
have no doubt that you will answer my turn well,
as I perceive you are both active and ingenious;
and on my return to America, I shall probably be
able to do something much better for you in Boston. *|I will take the first opportunity of speaking
to your father about it, and try to persuade him tc
consent. | He accordingly the next evening that
he called at our house introduced the subject: my
father at first would not listen to the proposal.
That best of parents, though anxious for my advantageous establishment in life, could not bear to
think of parting, with me, but on Capt. Salter's
telling him of what benefit it would be to me to
go the voyage with him, and that it was a pity to
keep a promising and ingenious your.g fellow, like
myself, confined to a small shop in England, when
if I had tolerable success, I might do so much
better in America, where wages were much higher
and living cheaper, he at length gave up his objections and consented that I should ship on board
th& Boston as an armourer, at the rate of thirty
dollars per j month; with an agreement that the
amount due me, together with a certain sum. of
money T^hich my father gave Capt. Salter for that
purpose, should be laid out by him on,the North-
West Coast in the purchase of furs on my account,
to be disposed of in China for such goodss as would
yield a profit on the return of the .ship.£ my father
being solicitous to give me every advantage in hti^
power, of well establishing myself m tm trade in
& "^feSS.—ST '■ -~v   ;     iTfTTF'
t ii
Boston or some other maritime town of America.
Suc^i were the flattering expectations which this
good man indulged respecting me.| Alas! the fatal
disaster that befel us, not only blasted all these
hopes, but involved ,me in extreme distress and
wretchedness for a long period after. Is
ii The sl^) having,undergone a thorough repair and
been well coppered,, proceeded to take on board
her cargo, which consisted of English cloths,
Dutcfh blankets, looking glasses, beads, knives,
razors, &c, which were received from Holland,
some sugar and molasses, about twenty hogsheads
of rum, including stores for the ship, a great
quantity of ammunition, cutlasses, pistols, and three
thousand ;muskets and fowling-pieces. The ship
being loaded and ready for sea, as I was preparing for my departure, my father came to me, and
taking m£ aside, said to me with much emotion,
John, I am now going to part with you, and heaven only knows if we shall ever again meet. J But
in whatever part of the world you are, always
bear it in mj^d^ that on your own conduct will
depend your success in life. Be honest, industrious, frugal, and temperate, and you will not
fail, fp whatsoever country it may be your lot to
be placed, to gain yourself friends. Let the
Bible b$ your guide, and your reliance in any
fortune that may befall you, that Almighty Being,
who knows how to bring forth good from evil,
■and whoj^er desejts those who put their trust in
him.4 He repeated his exhortations to me to lead
anjionest and a christian life, and to recollect that
I had a father, a mother, a brother, and sister,
who could not but feel a strong interest in my
welfare, enjoining me to write him by; the first
opportunity that should  offer to Eijgland, from jewitt'I^mirative.
Whatever part of the world I might be in, mote
particularly on my arrival in Boston. This I
promised to do, but long unhappily was it before
1 was able to fulfill this promise. I then took an
affectionate leave of my worthy parent, whose
feelings would hardly permit him to speak, and
bidding an affectionate farewell to my brother, sister, and st&p-mother, who expressed the greatest
solicitude for my future fortune, went on board
the ship, which proceeded to the Downs to be
ready for the first favourable wind. II found myself well accommodated on board as regarded my
work, an iron forge having been erected on deck;
this my father had made for the ship on a new
plan, for which he afterwards obtained a patent;
"while a corner of the steerage was appropriated
to my vice bench, so that in bad  weather I could
work below. • ::P'     ■■ jH
On the third day of September, 1802, we
sailed from the Downs with a fair wind, in company with twenty-four sail of American vessels,
most of which were bound home. H    |
I was sea-sick for a few of the ^ftrst days, but it
was of short continuance, and on my recovery I
found myself in uncommonly fine health and spirits, and went to work with alacrity at my forge,
in putting in order some of the muskets, and making daggers, knives, and small hatchets for the
Indian trade, while in wet and stormy weather I
was occupied below in filing and polishing them.
This was my employment, having but little to do
with sailing the vessel, though I used occasionally
to lend a hand in assisting the seamen in taking in
and making sail. As I had never before been out
of sight of land, I cannot describe my sensations,
ft jewitt's narrative.
.after I had recovered from the distressing effects
of sea-sickness, onWiewing the mighty ocean by
which I was surrounded, bounded only by the sky;
while its waves rising, in mountains, seemed every
moment to threaten oor ruin. Manifest as is the
hand of Providence ii* preserving its creatures
from destruction, in rioWtance is it more so than
on the great deep; for whether wTe consider in its
turn iltuary motions the watery deluge! that each
moment menaces to ovei^vhelm us, the immense
violence of its shocks, tin little that interposes
between us and death, a single plank forming our
Only security, which, should, it unfortunately be
loosened would plunge us at once into the abyss,
our gratitude ought strongly to\be excited towards
that superintending Deity who ^in so wonderful a
manner sustains our. lives amid the waves.
We had a pleasant and favourable passage of
twenty-nine days to the Island of St. Catherine
on the coast of Brazils, where the Captain had determined to stop for a few*days to wood and water, l This place belongs to the Portuguese. On
entering the harbour wre were saluted by the fort,
which we returned. The next day the Governor
of the Island came on board of us with his suite;
Captain Salter received him with much respect
and invited him to dine with him, which, he accepted. The ship remained at St. Catharine's
four days, during which-time, we were busily employed in taking in wood, water, and fresh provis-
ions,|Captain Salter thinking it best to furnish
himself here with a full supply for his voyage to
the North-West coast, so as not to be obliged to
stop at the Sandwich Islands. St. Catharine is a
very commodious place for vessels to stop at that jewitt's narrative.
are bound round Cape Horn, as it abounds with
springs of fine water, with excellent oranges,
plantains, and bananas.
Having completed our stores we put to sea, and
on the twenty-fifth of December at length passed
Cape Horn, which we had mSde no less than
thirty-six days before, but were repeatedly forced
back by contrary winds, experiencing very rough
and tempestuous weather in doubling it.
Immediately after passing Cape Horn, all our dangers and difficulties seemed to be at an end; the
weather became fine and so little labour was necessary on board the ship that the men soon recovered from their fatigue and were in excellent
spirits, j A few days after we fell in with an English South Sea Whaling Shij^ homeward bound,
which was the only vessel we spoke with on our
voyage. We now took $]ae trade wind or monsoon, during which we enjoyed the finest weather
possible, so that for the kpace of a fortnight we
were not obliged to reeve a topsail or to make a
tack, and so light was the duty and easy the life
of the sapors during this time, that they appeared
the happiest of any people in the world.
i Captain Salter, who had been for many years
in the East-India trade, was a most excellent seaman, and preserved the strictest order and discipline on board his ship, though he was a man of
mild temper and conciliating manners, and disposed to allow every indulgence to his men, not inconsistent with their duty. We had on board a
fine band of music, with which on Saturday nights,
when the weather was pleasant, we were accustomed to be regaled, the Caption ordering them to
play for several hours for the amusement of the
crew, kThis Jo me was i^QJt^ishrf^ especially
0% 18
during the serene evenings we experienced in tra^
versing   the   Southern   Ocean.    As for   myself,;
during the day  I was constantly occupied at my
forge,  in re-fitting or repairing some of the iron
work of the vessel, but principally in making tomahawks, daggers, &c. for the North West coast.
During  the first part of our voyage we saw
scarcely any fish, excepting some whales, a few
sharks, and flying fish; but after weathering Cape
Horn we met with numerous   shoals of sea  porpoises, several of whom we caught, and as  we
had been for some time without fresh provisions,
I found   it not only a palatable but   really a very
excellent food.    To   one who has never   before
seen them, a shoal of these fish presents a very j
striking and singular appearance; beheld at a distance
coming towards a vessel they  look   not   unlike a
great number of small   black waves rolling   over
one another in a confused manner and approaching
with great swiftness.    As soon as a   sLoal is seen
all is bustle and activity on board the ship, the
^grains and the harpoons are immediately got ready,
md those who are best skilled in throwing them
take their stand at the bow and aiOng the gunwale
anxiously awaiting the welcome troop as they come
gamboling and blowing around the vessel, in search
of food.    When pierced with the harpoon  and
drawn on board, iinless   the fish is instantly killed
by the stroke, which rarely happens, it utters most
pitiful cries, greatly resembling those of an infant.
The flesh cut into steaks and broiled, is not unlike
very coarse beef, and   the harslet in   appearance
and taste is so much   like that  of a  hog, that  it
would be no easy matter to distinguish the*one
from the other; from this circ unstance the sailors
ii?v© given the uame of Uxq berriug hog to tbis fish; JEWlTT's NARRATIVE.
I was told by-some of the crew, that if one of
thfcm happens to free itself from the grains or harpoons, when struck, all the others, attracted by
the blood, immediately quit the ship and give
chase to the wour.ded one, and as soon as they
overtake it immediately tear it in pieces* We also caught a large shark, which had followed the
ship for several days with a hook which I made
for the purpose, and although the flesh was by no
means equal to that of the herring hog, yet to
those destitute as we were of any thing fresh, I
found it eat very well. After passing the Cape
when die sea had become calm wre saw great
numbers fpf Albatrosses, a large brown and white
bird of the goose kind, one of which Captain
Salter shot, whose wTings measured from their extremities fifteen foet. One thing, however, I
must not omi| mentioning, as it struck me in a
most singular and extraordinary manner. This
was, that on passing Cape Horn i i December,
which was mid summer in that climate, the nights
were so light, without any moon, that we found
no difficulty whatever* in reading small print which
wTe frequently did during our watches.
In this manner, with a fair wind and easy weather from the 28th of December, the period of our
passing Cape Horn,we pursued our voyage to~the
Northward until the 12th of March 1803, when
we made Woody Point in Nootka Sound on the *
North West Coast of America. We immediately
stood tip the Sound for Nootka,* where Captain
Salter had determined to stop, in order to supply
the-ship with wood and water before proceeding up
the coast to trade. But in order to avoid the risk
of any molestation or interruption to his men from
the- Indians j wiule tbus employed, be j^ooeeded 20
with the ship about five milesi to the Northward of
the village, which is situated on Friendly Cove,
?!tod sent out his chief mate with several of the crew
in the boat to find a good place for anchoring her.
—After sounding for some time they returned with
information that they had discovered a secure place
for anchorage, on the Western side of an inlet or
small bay at about half a mile from the coast, near
a small island wfcich protected it from the sea, and
where there was a plenty of wood and excellent w^a-
ter. The ship accordingly came to anchor in this
place, at twelve o'clock at night, in twelve fathom
water, muddy bottom, and so near the shore that to
prevent the ship from winding we secured her by
a hauser to the trees.    On the morning of the next
f\\   M,
The arrival of the Boston, at Nootka Sound.
day, the thirteenth, several of the natives came on
board in a canoe from the village of Nootka, with
their king, called Maquina, who appeared much
pleased on seeing us, and with great seeming cordiality, welcomed Capt. Salter and his officers to
14s coijjajry. ||As I h^ never before beheld a sav- JEWITT'S NARRATIVE.
age of any nation, it may readily be supposed that
the novel-y of their appearance, so diherent from
any people that I had hitherto seen, excited in me
strong feelings of surprfse'and curiosity. I v\as,
however, particularly struck with the looks of their
king, who was a man of a dignified aspect, about
six feet in height and extremely strait and well
proportioned; his, features were in general good
and his face was rendered remarkable by a large
Roman nose, a very uncommon form of feature
among these people; his complexion was of a dark
• * copper hue, though his face, legs, and arms were
en this occasion, so covered with red paint, that
their natural colour could scarcely be perceived, his
eye-brows were painted black in two broad.stripes
like a new moon, and his long; black hair, which
'shone with oil, was fastened in a bunch on the top
of his head and strewed or powdered ail over with
white down, which gave him a most curious and
. \ extraordinary appearance. He was dressed in a
large mantle or cloak of the black sea otter skin,
which reached to his knees, and was fastened,
around his middle by a broad belt of the cloth
of the country, wrought, or painted with figures
of several colours; this dress was by no means unbecoming, but on the contrary had an air of savr
age magnificence. His men were habited in
mantles of the same cloth, which is made from the
bark of a tree, and has some resQmblance to straw"
matting, these are nearly square and have two holes
in the upper part large enough to admit the arms—
thev reach as low as the knees, and are fastened
around their bodies with a belt about four inches
broad of the same cloth. |f ; J|i|
JH From his having frequently visited the English
and American ships that traded to the coast, Ma-
\ 22
quina had learned the signification of a number of
English words, and in general could make himself
pretty well understood by us in our own language.
He was always the first to go on board such ships
as came to Nootka, which he was much pleased
in visiting, even when he had no trade to offer, as
.he almost always received some small present, and
was in general extremely well treated by the commanders. He remained on board of us for some
time'during which the captain took him into the
cabin and treated him with a glass of rum; these
people being very fond of distilled spirits, and
some biscuit and molasses which they prefer to
any kind of food that we can offer them. |t
*|f As there are seldom many furs to be purchased
at this place, and it was not fully the season, Capt.
Salter had put in here not so much with an expectation of trading as to procure an ample stock of
wood and water for the supply of the ship on the
coast, thinking it more prudent to take it on board
at' Nootka, from the generally friendly disposition
of the people^ than to endanger the safety of his
men in sending them on shore for that purpose
among the more ferocious natives of the north.
With this view, we immediately set about getting
our water casks in readiness, and the next and two
succeedjng days part of the crew were sent on
shore to cut pine timber and assist the carpenter
in making it into yards and spars for the ship,
while those on board were employed in refitting
the rigging, repairing the sails, &c. when we proceeded to take in our wood arid water as expeditiously as possible, during which time I kept myself busily employed in repairing the muskets,
making knives, tomaxes, &c. and doing such iron
work as was wanted for die ship.    Meantime more JEWITT S NARRATIVE
or less of the natives came on board of us daily,
bringing with them fresh salmon with which they
supplied us in great plenty, receiving in return
some trifling articles. Capt. Salter was always
Tpry particular before admitting these people on
board to see that they had no arms about ihem,
by obliging them indiscriminately to throw off their
garments, so that he felt perfectly secure from any
attack. On the fifteenth the king came on board
with several of his chiefs; he was dressed as before in his magnificent otter skin robe, having his
face highly painted, and his- hair tossed off with
the white down which looked like snow; his
chiefs wer§, dressed in mantles of the country
cloth of its natural colour, which is a pale yellow;
these were ornamented with a broad border painted or wrought in figures of several colours representing men's heads, various animals, &c. and secured around them by a belt like that of the king
from which it wras distinguished only by being
narrower: the dress of the common people is of
the same fashion and differs from that of the chiefs
in being of a coarser texture and painted red, of
one uniform colour. pi
Captain Salter invited Maquina and his chiefs
to dine with him, and it was curious to see how
these people (when they eat) seat themselves (in
their country fashion upon our chairs) with their
feet under them crossed like Turks. They cannot endure the taste of salt, and the only thing
they would eat with us was the ship bread which
they were very fond of, especially when dipped in
molasses; they had also a great liking for tea and
coffee when well sweetened. As iron weapons
and tools of almost every kind are in much request
among them, whenever they came on board they
rm M
were always very attentive to me, crowding around
me at the forge, as if to see in what manner I did
my work, and in this way became quite familiar,
a circumstance, as will, be seen in the end, of
great importance to me. Thf salmon #lfeh they
brought us furnished a most delicious treat "to men
who for a long time had lived wholly on salt provisions excepting such few sea fish as we had the
good fortune occasionally to take. We indeed
feasted most luxuriously, and flattered ourselves
that we should not want while on the coast for
plenty of fresh provisions, little imagining the fate
that awaited us, and that this dainty food was to
prove the unfortunate lure to our destruction! On
the nineteenth, the king came again on board and
was invited by the Captain to dine with Bhn. He -
had much conversation wTith Capt. Salter, and informed him that there were plenty of wild ducks
and geese near Friendly Cove,-on whicBHhe Gap-
tain made him a present of a double-%arreled fowling piece \yith which he appeared to be greatly
pleased and soon after went on shore.
On the 20th we were nearly ready for our departure, having taken in what wood and water we
were in want of. jj|
The next day Maquina came on board with
nine pair of wild ducks, as a present, at the same
time he brought with him the gun, onesOf the locks
of which he ha3 broken, telling the Captain that it
was peshak, that is bad; Capt. Salter was very *
much offended at this observation, and considering it as a mark of contempt for his present,|he .
called the king a liar, ad ting other opprobrious
terms, and taking the gun from him tossed it indignantly into the cabin and calling me to+iim said,
* John, this fellow has broken this beautiful^fbwl*
u&«« jewitt's narrative.
ing piece, see if you can mend it:' on examining-
it I told him that it could be done.—As I have
already obierved, M-aquina knew a number^ of
English.words, and unfortunately understood but
too well the leaning of the reproachful terms that
the Captain addresled to him.—dHe said not a
word in reply, but his countenance sufficiently expressed the rage he felt, though he exerted himself to suppress it, and I observed him while the
Captain was speaking repeatedly put his hand to
hitehroat and rub 4t upon his bosom, which he
afterwards told me was to keep down his heart
wtiich was rising into his throat and choaking him.
He soon after went on shore with his men, evidently much disQomposed.
On the morning of the 22d the natives came off
to us as usual with salmon, and remained on board,
•when about noon Maquina came along side with a
considerable number of his chiefs and men in their
canoes, who,fcafter going through the customary
examination were admitted into the ship. He had
a whis+le<$h his hand, and over his face a very ugly mask of wood representing the head of some
wild beast, appeared to be remarkably good humoured aid gay, and whilst his people sung and
capered about the deck, entertaining us with a variety of antic tricks and gestures, he blew his
whistle to a kind of tune which seemed td regulate
their motions. As Capt. Salter was walking on
the quarter deck amusing himself with their danc-.
ing, the king came up^o him and enquired when
he intended to 20 to sea?—he answered, to-mor-
row.—Maquina then said, c you love salmon—
much in Friendly Cove, why not go then and
catch some?'—The Captain thought that it would
be \*Qxy desirable to have n good supply of thes§ '
i M'#
fish for die voyage, and on consulting with Mr
Delouisa it was agreed to send part of the crew
on shore after dinner with the seine in order to
procure a quantity—Maquina and his chiefs staid
and dined on board, and after dinner the chief
mate went off with nine men in die jolly boat and
yawl to fish at Friendly Cove, having set the
steward on shore at our watering place to wash
the captain's clothes. Shortly after the departure
of the boats I went down to my vice-bench*in the
steerage, wbere I was employed in cleaning muskets. H I had not been there more than an hour
when I heard the men hoisting in the long boat,
which, in a few minutes after, was succeeded by
a great bustle and confusion an$leck. I immediately ran up the steerage stairs, but scarcely was
my head above deck, when I was caught by the
hair by, one of the savages^ and lifted from my
feet; fortunately for me, my hair Joeing short, and
the ribbon with which it was tied slipping, I fell
from his hold into the St&erage. As I was falling,
he struck etc me with an axe, which cut a deep
gash in my forehead, and penetrated the skull ^ but
m consequence of his losing his hold, I luckily escaped the full force of the blow; which, otherwise,
would have cleft my head in two: I fell, stunped
and senseless upon the floor—how long I continued in this situation I know7 not, but on recovering
my senses the first* thing that I did, was to try to
get up; but so weak was I, from the loss of blood,
that I fainted andMell. I was however soon recalled to my recollection by three loud shouts or
yells from the savages, which convinced me that
they had got possession of tile ship. It is impossible for me to describe my feelings at this terrific
sounds-Some faint idea may be formed of them JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
by those who have known what it is to half waken
from a hideous dream and still think it real. Never, no, never, shall I lose from my mind, the impression of that dreadful moment. I expected
every instant to share the wretched fate of my unfortunate companions, and when I heard the song
of triumph, by which these infernal yells was succeeded, my blood ran cold in my veins. Having
at length sufficiently recovered my senses to look
around me after wiping the blood from my eyes, I
saw tMifet the hatch of the* steerage was shut. This
was done, as I afterwards discovered, by order of
Maquina, who, on seeing the savage strike at me
with the axe, told him not to hurt me, for that I
was the armourer, and would be useful to them in
repairing their arms; while at the same time to
prevent any of his men from injuring me, he had
the hatch closed. But to me this circumstance
xwore a very different appearance, for I thought
that these barbarians had only prolonged my life
in order to deprive me of it by the most cruel tortures. I remained in this horrid state of suspense
for a very loitg time, when at length the hatch was
opened, and Maquina, calling me by name, ordered me to conle up. I groped my way up as well
as I was able^ being almost blinded with the blood
that flowed from my wound, and so weak as with
difficulty to walk. The king, on perceiving my
situation, /ordered one of his men to bring a ppt
of water to wash the blood from my face, which
having done, I was able to see distinctly with one
of my eyes, but the other was so swollen from my
wound, that it was closed. But what a terrific
spectacle met my eyes; six. naked savages, standing in a circle around me, covered with the blood
of i&y murdered qppgrades, with their daggers up-
m rf
lifted in. their-hands, prepared to strike. I now
thought rny last, moment-'(bad come, and recommended my soul to my Maker.—The king, who,
as I have already observed, knew enough of English to make himself understood, entered the circle^ and placing himself before me, addressed me
nearly in the following wrords—u John—I speak
—you no say no—You say no—daggers come!"
He then asked me if I would be his slave during
my life—-If I wrould fight for him in his battles—
If I would repair his muskets and make daggefi
and knives for him—with sevesal other questions,
to all of which I was careful to answer, yes. He
tiien told me that me womld spare my life, and ordered me to kiss his hands and feet to show my
submission to hpi, which I did.—In the mean tijrie
his people were very clamorous to have me put trf
death, so that there should be none of us left-to
tell our storyfjito our countrymen and prevent them
from coming to trade with them; but the king, in
the most determined manner opposed their wishes,
and to his favour am I wholly* indebted for my being yet among the living. As I was busy at work
at the time of the attack, I was without my coat,
and what with the coldness of the wreather, my
feebleness from loss of blood, the pain of my
%#ynd and the extreme agitation and terror that I
still felt, I shook like a leaf, which the king observing, wrent into the cabin and bringing up a
great coat that belonged to the captain, threw it
over my shoulders, telling me to drink some rum
from a bottlfc which he handed me at the same
time, giving me to understand that it would be
good for me and keep me from trembling as I did.
I took a draught of it, after which, taking me by
.the band) be led me to the quarter deck?1 wberej
the most horrid sight presented itself that ever my
eyes witnessed—-the heads of our unfortunate Captain and his crew, to the number of twenty-five,
were all arranged in a line, and Maquina ordering
one of his people to bring a head, asked me whose
it was: I answered,, the Captain's; in like manner
the others were showed me, apd I told him the
names,'excepting a few that were so horribly mangled that I was not able to recognize them. I
now discovered that all our unfortunate crew had
been massacred, and-learned that after getting possession of the ship, the savages had broke open
the arm chest and magazine, and supplying them-1
selves with ammunition and arms, sent a party on
shore to attack our men gl had gone thither to
fish, and being joined by numbers from the village,
without difficulty overpowered, and murdered
them,'and cutting off their heads, brought them
on board, after throwing their bodies into the sea.
On looking upon the deck, I saw it entirely covered with the blood of my poor comrades, whose
throats had been cut with their own jack-knives,
the savages having seized the opportunity while
they wTere busy in hoisting in the boat to grapple
with them and overpower them by their numbers;
in the scuffle the capjtain was thrown overboard
and despatched by those in the canoes, who immediately cut off his head: What I felt on this occasion, may be more readily conceived than expressed. Ijl y|
After I had answered his questions, Maquina
took my silk handkerchief from my neck and bound
it around my head, placing over the wound a leaf
of tobacco, of which we had a quantity on board.
This was done at my desire, as I had often found
3* as
ll! '
from personal experience the benefit of this application to cuts.
Maquina then ordered me to get the ship under
weigh for Friendly Cove. This I did by cutting
the cables and sending some of the natives aloft to
loose the sails, which they performed in a very
bungling manner. But they succeeded so far in
loosing the jib and topsails, that, with the advantage of a fair wind, I succeeded in getting the ship
into the Cove, where, by order of the King, I ran
her ashore on a sandy beach, at 8 o'clock at night.
We were received by the inhabitants of the vil^-
lags, men, women, and children, with loud shouts
of joy, and a most horrible drumming with sticks
upon the roofs and sides of their houses^, jn wdiich
they had also stuck a great number-of lighted pine
torches, to welcome their king's return and congratulate him on the success of his enterprize.
Maquina then took me on shore to his house,
which was very large and filled wTith people—
where I was received with much kindness by the
women, particularly those belonging 'to the king,
wrho had no less than nine wives, all of whom
came around me expressing much sympathy for my
misfortune, gently stroking and patting my head in
an encouraging and soothing manner, with words
expressive of condolence. How sweet is compassion even from savages?—Those who have been
in a similar situation, can alone truly appreciate its
value. fll
In the mean time, all the warriors of the tribe,
to the number of five hundred, had assembled at
the king's house to rejoice for theiV success.
They exulted greatly in having taken our ship,
and> each one boasted of his own particular exploits
in killing our men, but they were in general much
dissatisfied with my having been suffered to live,
and were very urgent with Maquina to deliver me
to them to be put to death, which he obstinately refused to do, telling them that he had promised me
ray life and would hot break his word; and that
besides, I knew how to repair and to make arms,
and should'be of great use to them.
The king then seated me by him and Ordered
jkhis women to bring him something to eat, when
they set before him some dried clams and train
Oil, of which he ate very heartily, and encouraged
me to follow his example, telling me to eat much
and take a great deal of oil which would make me
strong and fat; notwithstanding his praise of this
new kind of food, I felt no disposition to indulge
in it, both the smell and taste being loathsome to
me; and had it been otherwise, such was the pain
I  endured, the  agitation  of  my   mind, and  the
gloominess- of my reflections, that I should have
felt very little inclination for eating.    Not satisfied
with his first refusal to deliver me up'to them, the
people again became clamorous that Maquina should,
consent to my being killed, saying that not one of
us ought to  be left alive to  give information to
others of our countrymen and prevent them from
coming to trade or induce them to revenge the destruction of our ship, and they at length became so
boisterous that he caught up a large club in a passion and drove them all out of the house.     During
tlrs scene a son of the king, of about eleven years
ol I, attracted no doubt by the singularity oPmy appearance came up to me: I caressed him; he returned my a-tentions with much apparent pleasure,
and considering this as a fortunate opportunity to
, gain the good will of the father, I took the child 1
on my knee, and cutting the metal buttons from off
the coat I had on, I tied them around his neck.
At this he was highly delighted, and became so
much attached to me.that he would not quit me.
The king appeared much pleased writh my attention to his son, and telling me that it wras time
to go to sleep, directed me to lie with his son next
to him, as he was afraid lest some of his people
would come while he was asleep and kill* me with
their daggers^ I lay down as he ordered me, but
neither the state of my mind nor the pain I felt
would allow me to sleep. About iftidnight I was
greatly alarmed by the approach of one of the natives, who came to give information to the king
that there wras one of the white men alive, who
had knocked him down as he wrent on board the
ship at night. This Maquina communicated to
me, giving me to understand that as soon as the sun
rose he should kill him. I endeavoured to persuade him to spare his life, but he bade me be
silent and ga to sleep. I said nothing more but
lay revolving in my mind what method I could devise to save the life of this man. What a consolation thought I, what a happiness would it
prove to me ig my forlorn state among these
heathen, to have a Christian and one of my own coun
trymen for a companion,-and how greatly would
it alleviate and lighten the burden of my slavery.
As I was thinking of some plan for his preservation, it all at once came into my mind that this
man wras probably the sail-maker of the ship, named
Thompson, as I had not seen his h<ead among
those on deck, and knew that he wras below at
work upon the sails not long before the attack.
The more I thought of it the more provable it appeared to me, and as Thompson was a man nearly JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
forty years of age, and had an old look, I conceived it would be easy to make him pass for my father,, and by this means prevail on Maquina to spare
his life. Towards morning I fell into a doze, but
was awakened wdth the first beams of the sun by
the king, wTho told me that he was going to kill
the man who was on board the ship, and ordered
me to accompany him. I rose and followed him,
leading with me the young prince his son.
. On coming to the beach I found all the men of
the tribe assembled. The king addressed them,
saying that one of the white men had been found
alive on board the ship, and requested their opinion as to saving his life or putting him to death.
They were unanimously for the first: This determination he made known to me. Having arranged my plan, I asked him, pointing to the boy
whom I still held by the hand, if he loved his son,
he answered that he did; I then asked the child if
he loved his father, and on replying in the affirmative, I said and u I also love mine." I then threw
myself on my knees at Maquina's feet, and implored him with tears in my eyes to spare my father's
life, if the man on board should prove to be him,
telling him that if he killed my father it was my
wish that he should kill me too, and that if he did
not I would kill myself,—and that he would thus
lose my services; whereas, by sparing my father's
life he would preserve mine, which would be of
great advantage to him by my repairing and making arms for him. Maquina appeared moved by
my entreaties and promised not to put the man to
death if he should be my father. He then explained to his people what I had said, and ordered
me to go on board and tell the man to come on
* shore.    To my unspeakable joy on going into the
ii 34
■ '•
11 .1
jewitt's narrative.
hold, I found that my conjecture was true, Thompson was there, he had escaped without any injury,
excepting a slight wound in the nose, given him by
one of the savages with a knife as he attempted to
come on deck, during the scuffle. Finding the
savages in possession of the ship, as he afterwards
informed me, he secreted himself in the hold, hoping for some chance to make his escape—but that
the Indian who came on board in the night approaching the place where, he was, he supposed
himself discovered, and being determined to sell
his life as dearly as possible, as soon as he came
•within his reach, he knocked him down, but the
Indian immediately springing up, ran 'Off at full
speed.—I informed him in a few 'words that all
our men had been killed; that the king had preserved my life, and had consented to spare his on the
supposition that he was my father, an opinion
which he must be careful not to undeceive them in,*
as it was his only safety. After giving him his
cue, I went on shore with him and presented him
to Maquina, who immediately knew him to be the
sail-maker and was much pleased, observing thai he
could make sails for his canoe.—He then took us
to his house and ordered something for us to eat.
On the 24th and 25th the natives were busily
employed in taking the cargo out of the ship, stripping her of her sails and rigging, cutting away the
spars and masts, and in short rendering her as
complete a wreck as possible, the muskets, ammunition, cloth and all the principal articles taken
from her, being deposited in the king's house.JHPf
While they were thus occupied, each one taking what he liked, my companion and myself being
obliged to aid them, I thought it best to secure
the accounts and papers of the ship, in hopes that
jn some future day I might have it in my power to
restore them to the owners.|| With this view I
took possession of the Captain's writing desk
which contained the most of them, together with
some, paper and implements for writing. I had
also the good fortune to find a blank account book,
in which I resolved, should it be permitted me to
write an account of our capture and the most remarkable occurrences that I should meet with during my stay among these people, fondly indulging
the, hope that it would not be long before some
vessel would arrive to release us. I likewise
found in the cabin, a small volume of sermons, a
bible, and a common prayer book of the Church
of England, which furnished me and my comrade
great consolation in the midst of our mournful
servitude, and enabled nie, under the favor of
divine providence, to support, with firmness, the
miseries of a life which I might otherwise have
found beyond my strength to endure. As these
people set no value upon things of this kind, I
found no difficulty in appropriating them to myself,
by putting them in my. chest, which though it had
been broken open and rifled by the savages, as I
still had the key, I without much difficulty secured. In this I also put some small tools belonging
to the ship, with several other articles, particularly
a journal kept by the second mate, Mr. Ingraham,
and a collection of drawings and views of places
taken by him, which I had the good fortune to
preserve, and on my arrival at Boston, I gave them
to a connection of his, the honorable Judge Dawes,
who sent them to his family in New-Yorktm
On the 26th, two ships were seen standing in
for Friendly Cove. At their first appearance the
inhabitants were thrown into great confusion, but
\ I
iHrl  '
I-   '
soon collecting a number of muskpts and blunderbusses, ran to the shore, from whence they kept
up so brisk a fire at them, that they were evidently
afraid to approach nearer, and after firing a few
rounds of grape shot which did no harm to any
one, they wore ship and stood out to sea. These
ships, as I afterwards learned, were the Mary and
Juno of Boston.
They were scarcely out of sight when Maquina
expressed much regret that he had permitted his
people to fire at them, being apprehensive that
they would give information to others in what
manner they had been received, and prevent them
from coming to trade with him.
A few days after hearing of the capture of the'
ship, there arrived at Nootka a great number of
canoes filled with savages from no less thin twenty
tribes to the North and South. Among those
from the North were the Ai-tiz-zarts, Schoo-mad-
its, Nsu-wit-tiesj Savin-nars, Ah-owz-arts, Mo-
watch-its, Suth-setts, Neu-chad-lits, Mich-la-its
and Cay-u-quets; the most of whom were cbnsid-^
ered as tributary to Nootka.    From the South, jewitt's narrative.
^itfwisarts and Esquiates also tributary, with
the Kla-oo-quates, and the Wickanninish, a large
and powerful tribe about two hundred miles distant.    These last were better clad than most of
the others, and their canoes wrought with much
greater skill; they are furnished with sails as well
as paddles, and with the advantage of a fair breeze,
are usually but twenty-four hours on their passage.
Maquina, who was very proud of his new acquisition, was desirous of welcoming these visitors
in the European manner.    He accordingly ordered his men, as the canoes approached, to assemble on the beach with loaded muskets and blunderbusses, placing Thompson at the cannon which
had been brought from the ship and laid upon two
long sticks of timber in front of the village, then
taking a speaking trumpet in his hand he ascended
with me the roof of his house, and began drumming or beating  upon the boards with  a  stick
most violently.      Nothing   could be more ludicrous than the appearance of this motley group of
savages collected *on the shore, dressed as they
were, with their ill-gotten finery, in the most fantastic manner, some in women's smocks,  taken
from ouj* cargo, others in Kotsacks, (or cloaks)
of blue, red or yellow broadcloth, with stockings
drawn over their heads, and their necks hung round
with numbers of poXvder-horns, shot-bags, and car-
touch-boxes, some of them having no less than ten
muskets a piece on their shoulders, and five or six
daggers in their girdles.    Diverting indeed was it
to see them all squatted upon the beach, holding
their muskets perpendicularly, with the butt pressed upon the sand instead of against their should--
ers, and in this position awaited the ordftr to'fire.
Maquina, at last, called to them with his trumpet
%     I ■ HI i
to fire, which they did in the most awkward and
timid manner, with their nfuskets hard pressed
upon the ground as above mentioned. *At the
same moment the cannon w^ fired by Thompson, immediately on which they threw themselves
back and began to roll and tumble over the sand
as if they had been shot, when suddenly springing
up they began a song of triumph and running backward and forward upon the shore, 'faith the wildest gesticulations, boasted of their exploits and exhibited as trophies what they had taken from us.
Notwithstanding the unpleasantness of my situation,
and the feelings that this display of our spoils excited, I could not avoid laughing at the strange
Sppearance of these savages, their awkward movements, and the singular contrast of their dress and 4
arms. |j|
When the ceremony was concluded, Maquina ih-
vited the strangers to a feast at his house, consisting of while blubber, smoked fierring #pawn, and
dried fish and train oil, of which they eat most
plentifully, jf The feast being over, the trays out
of which they eat, and other things were immediately removed to make room for the dance, which
was to close the entertainment. This was performed by Maquina's son, the young prince Sat-
sat-£ol$-:sis, whom I -have already spoken of, in the
following manner—Three of the principal"chiefs,
drest in their otter-skin mantles, which they wore
only on extraordinary occasions and at festivals,
having their heads covered over with white down
and their faces highly painted, came forward into
the middle of the room, each furnished with a bag
filled with the white down, which they scattered
around in such a manner as to represent a fall of
snow.    These were followed by the young prince, JEWITT S  NARRATIVE.
who was dressed in a long piece of yellow cloth,
^rapped loosely around him, and decorated with
small bells, with a cap on his head, to which was
fastened a curious mask in imitation of a wroli's
head, while the rear was brought up by the king
himself in his robe of sea-otter skin, with a small
whistle in his mouth and a rattle in his hand, with
which he kept time to a sort of tune*on his whistle. After passing very rapidly in this order
around the house, each of them seated himself,
except the prince, who I immediately began his
dance, which principally consisted in springing up
into the air in a squat posture, and constantly turning around on his heels with great swiftness in a
very narrow circle. This dance with a few inter
vals of rest, was continued for about two hours,
during which the chiefs kept up a constant drumming with sticks of about a foot in length on a long
hollow plank, which was, though a very noisy, a
most doleful kind of music. This they accompanied with songs, the king himself acting as chor-
i&j?r, while- the women applaftded each feat of
activity in the dancer by repeating the words, Wocash! Wocash Tyee! that is goodlifvery good
prince. As soon as the dance was finished Maquipa
began to give presents to the strangers in the name
of his son Sat-sat-sok-sis. These were pieces of
European cloth generally of a fathom in length,
muskets, powder, shot, &c. Whenever he gave
them any thing, they had a peculiar manner of
snatching it from him with a very stern and surly
look, repeating each time the words, Wocash Tyea:
This I understood to be their custom, and * watf
considered as a compliment which if omitted would
be supposed as a mark of disregard for the present.
On this occasion Maquina gave away no less than
/ nffflfiMBf;1.
i\ .:ll
i SI
one hundred muskets, the &ame number of looking
glasses, four hundred yards of cloth, and twenty
casks of powder, besides other things.
After receiving these presents, the strangers
retired on board their canoes, for so numerous
wrere they that Maquina would not suffer any but
the chiefs to sleep in the houses; and in order to
prevent the property from being pillaged by them,
he ordered Thompson and myself to keep guard,
during the night, armed with cutlasses and pistols.
In this manner tribes of savages from various
parts of the coast, continued coming for several
days, bringing with them, blubber, oil, herring
spawn, dried fish and clams, for which they received in retyrn, presents of cloth, &c. after which
they in general immediately returned home. I
observed that very few, if any of them, except the
chiefs, had arms, which I afterwards learned i$ the
custom with these people whenever they come
upon a friendly visit or to trade, in order to show,
on their approach, that their intentions are pacific.
M Early on the morning of the 18th the ship wns
diseovered to be on fire. This was owing to one
of the savages having gone on board with a fire
brand at night for the purpose of, plunder, some
sparks from which fell into the hold, and communicating with some combustibles soon enveloped
the whoje in flames. The natives regretted the
loss of the ship the more as a great part of her
cargo still remained on boards To my; companion and myself it was a most melancholy sight, for
with her disappeared from our eyes every trace of
a civilized country; but the disappointment we experienced was still more severely felt, for we bad
calculated on having the provision to ourselves,
which would have furnished us with a stock for JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
,    -years, as whatever is citred with salt, together with
\ most of our other articles of food, are never eaten
H§.'. by these people.    I had luckily saved all my tools
excepting the anvil,, and the bellowTs wdiich was
!# * attached to the forge, and  from- their weight had
*   *not been brought on shore.    We had also the good
fortune 81 looking over wdiat had been tak^n from
the ship to discover a box of chocolate and a case
of port wine, which as the Indians were not fond
of it proved a great comfort to us for sometime,
and from one of the natives I obtained a nautical
almanack, which had belonged to the Captain, and
which was of great,use to me in  determining the
H time.
About two days after, on examining their booty,
t      the.savages found a tierce of rum with which they
were highly delighted, as they have become very
fond of spirituous liquors since their intercourse
.with the.whites.—This Was towards evening, and
Maquina having assembled all the men at his house,
■i gave a least, at which they drank so freely of the
rum, that in a short time, they became so extremely wild and frantic that Thompson   and myself,
apprehensive for our safety, thought it prudent to
retire privately into the wroods, where wre continued till past *mklnight.    On our return we found
the women gone, who are always very temperate,
■M drinking nothing but water, having quitted the housd
and gone to the other huts to sleep, so terrified
■-"  were they at the conduct of the men, who all lay
stretched out on the floor in a state of complete
intoxication.    Howr easy in this situation would it
have been for us to have dispatched or made ourselves masters of our enemies, had there been any
||   ship near to which we could have escaped, but as
-'III - we were situated, the attempt would have been
W     4*
I I if
madness. The wish of reyenge was however
less strongly impressed on my mind, than what
appeared to be so evident an interposition of divine Providence in our favour. How little can-
man penetrate its design, and how frequently is
that intended as a blessing which he views as a
curse. The burning of our ship which we had
lamented \ so much, as depriving us of so many
comforts, now appeared to us in a very different
light, for had the savages got possession of the
rum of which there were nearly twenty puncheons
on board.|j.we must inevitably have fallen a sacrifice to their fury in some of their moments of intoxication. This cask fortunately and a case of
gin was all the spirits they obtained from the ship.
To prevent the recurrence of similar danger I examined the cask, and finding still a considerable
quantity remaining, I bored s small hole in the
bottom with a gimblet, which before morning to
my great joy completely emptied it.      ^Jp
By this time the wound in my head began to be
mtich better, so that I could enjoy some sleep,
which I had been almost deprived of by the pain,
and though I was still feeble from the loss of blood
and my sufferings, I found myself sufficiently wvell
to go to work at my trade, in making for the king
and his wives bracelets and other small ornaments
of copper or steel, and in repairing the arms, making
use of a large square stone for the anvil, and heating my metal in a common wood fire. This was
very gratifying to Maquina and his women particularly, and secured me their good will.
In the mean time great numbers from the other
tribes kept continually flocking to Nootka, bringing
with them in exchange for the ship's plunder such
quantities of provision,, that notwithstanding the JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
little success that Maquina met with in whaling
this season, and their gluttonous waste, always eating to excess when they havg it, regardless of the
morrow, seldom did the natives experience any
want of food during the summer. As to myself and companion we farea as they did, never
wanting for such provision as they vfiad, though
we were obliged to eat It cooked in their manner
and with trpn oil as a sauce, a circumstance not a
little unpleasant, both from their uncleanly mode
of cooking, and many of the articles of their food
which to an European are veitp disgusting, but, as
the saying is, hunger will break through stone walls,
and we found at times in the blubber of sea animals
and the flesh of the dog fish, loathsome ds it in j
general was, a very acceptable repast. But m$jch
oftener would poor Thompson, who was no favorite
with them, have suffered from hunger had it not been
for 4ny furnishing him with provision—This I was
enabled to do from my work, Maquina allowing me
the privilege, when not employed for him, to work
for myself in making bracelets and other ornaments of copper, fish-hooks, daggers, &c. eitlier
to sell to the tribes who visited us, or for our own<
chiefs, who on these occasions, besides supplying
me with as much as I wishedlto eat, and a sufficiency for Thompson, almost always made^me a
present of an European garment taken from the
ship or some fathoms of cloth, which were made
up by my comrade, and enabled us to go comfortably clad for some time, or small bundles of
penknives, razors, scissors, &c. for one of which
we coulfl almost always procure from the natives
two or three fresh salmon, cod, or halibut; or
dried fish, clams and Iferring spawn from the stranger tribes; and had we only been permitted to
I jewitt's narrative,
cook them after our own way, as we had pots,
arid other utensils belonging to the ship, we should
not have had much cause of complaint in this respect; but so tenacious are these people of their
customs, particularly in the article of food and
cooking, that the king always obliged me to give
whatever provisions I bought to the women to
cook—and one day finding Thompson and myself
on the shore employed in boiling down sea-water
irato salt, on being told what it was, he was*very
much displeased, and taking the little we had procured, threw it into the sea. In one instance
alone, as a particular favor, he allowed me to boil
some salmon in my own way, when I invited him
and his queen to eat with me; they tasted it, but
did not like it, and made their meal of some of it
that I had cooked in their country fashion.
In May, the weather became uncommonly
mild and pleasant, and so forward was vegetation
that I picked a plenty of strawberries by the'mid-
dle of the month. Of this fruit there are great
quantities on this coast, and I found them a most
delicious treat.—My health had now become almost
re-established, my wound being so far healed that
it gave me no farther trouble. I had never failed
to wash it regularly once a day in sea water, and
to dress it with a fresh leaf of tobacco, which I
obtained from the natives, who had taken it from
the ship, but made no use of it. This was all the
dressing I gave it, except applying to it two or
three times, a little loaf sugar, which Maquina gave
me, in order to remove some proud flesh which
prevented it from closing. My cure would doubtless have been much sooner effected had I have
been in a civilized country, where I could have
had it dressed by a surgeon and properly attended jewitt's narrative.
to, But alas! I had no good Samaritan with oil
and wine to bind up my wounds, and fortunate
might I even esteem myself, that I was permitted
to dress it myself, for the utmost that I could
expect4 from the natives was compassion for
my misfortune, which I indeed experienced from
the women, particularly the queen, or favorite wife
of Maquina, the mother of Sat-sat-sox-sis,, who
used frequently to point to my head and manifest much kindness and solicitude forme. I must
do Maquina the justice to acknowledge that he always appeared desirous of sparing me any labour
which he believed might be hurtful to me, frequently
enquiring in an affectionate manner, if my head pained me. As for the others, some of the chiefs ex-^
cepted, they cared little what became oftme, and
probably would have been gratified with my death.
My health being at length re-established and my
wound healed, Thompson became very importunate for me to begin my journal, and as Lhad no
ink, proposed to cut his finger to supply me with
blood for the purpose whenever I should want it.
On the first of June I accordingly commenced a
regular diary, but had no occasion to make use of
the expedient suggested by my comrade, having
found a much better substitute in the expressed
juice of a certain plant, which furnished me with a
bright green colour, and after making a number of
trials I at length succeeded in obtaining a very tolerable ink, by boiling the juice of the black-terry
with a mixture of finely powdered charcoal and
filtering it through a cloth. This I afterwards preserved jn bottles and found it answer very well,
so true is it that fa necessity \s the mother of invention." As for quills I" found no difficulty in
procuring them,  whenever I   wanted, jxom the
l jewitt's narrative.
:' ill
crows and ravens with which the beach was almost
always covered, attracted by the offal of whales,
seals, &c. and wrhich were so tame that I could
easily kill them with stones, while a large clam
shell furnished me with an ink stand.
ff The extreme solicitude of Thompson that I
should begin my journal, might be considered "as
singular ina man, who neither knew how to write
or read, a circumstance by the way, very uncom- j
mon in an American, were we less acquainted with
the force Of habit, he having been for many years
at sea, and accustomed to consider the keeping of
a journal as a thing indispensable. This man was
born in Philadelphia, and at eight years oldv ran
away from his friends, and entered as a cabin boy
on board a ship bound to London; on his, arrival
there finding himself in distress, he engaged as /an
apprentice to the captain of a Collier, from whence
he*was impressed on board an Englishman of war,
and continued in the British naval service about
twenty-seven years^ during which he was present
at the engagement under Lord Howe with the
French fleet in June, 1794, and when peace wasp
made between England and France was discharged.
He was a very strong and powerfol man, an expert boxer, and perfectly fearless; indeed so little
was his dread .of danger, that when irritated he
was wholly regardless of his life. 'Of this sthe fol- .
lowing will furnish a sufficient proof. 1
One evening about the middle of April, as I.
was at the house of one of the chiefs, where I had&f
been-employed on some work for him, word was
brought me that Maquina was going, to kill Thompson. I immediately hurried home, whefe I found '
the king in the act of presenting a loaded musket
at TJiKW£px% who was steading be&re bim wittt
his breast bared and calling on-him to fire. I in-
stantly stepped up to Maquina, who was foaming
with rage, and addressing him ,in soothing words,
begged him for my sake not to kill my lather, and
at length succeeded in taking the musket from him
and persuading him to sit down. On enquiring
into the cause of his anger, I learned that while
Thompson was lighting the lamps in the king's
room, Maquina having substituted our's for their
pine torches, some of the.boys began to teaze him,
running around him and pulling him by the trow-
sers, among the most forward of whom was the
'young prince. .This caused Thompson to spill
the oil, which threw hira into such a passion, that
without caring what hejdid, he struck the prince
so violent a blow in his face with his fist as to
knock'him down. The sensation excited among
the savages by an act, which was considered as
the highest indignity, and a profanation of the sabred person of majesty may be easily conceived.
The king was immediately acquainted with it, who,
on coming in and seeing his son's face covered
with blood, seized a musket and began to load*it,
• determined to take instant revenge on the audacious offender;- and had I arrived a few minutes
later than I did, my companion would certainly
have paid with his life for his rash and violent con-
' duct. I found the utmost difficulty in pacifying
Maquina, who for a long time after could not forgive Thompson, but would repeatedly say, u John,
you die—Thompson kill."—r-But to appease the'
king was not all that was necessary. l In consequence of the insult offered to their prince, the
whole tribe held a council, in which it Was unanimously resolved that Thompson shoulcLbe put to
death m the most cn&l manner.    I however inter* ftf
1 ti
jewitt's narrative.
ceded so strenuously with Maquina, for his life,
telling him that if my father was killed, I was determined not to survive him, that he refused to
deliver him up to the vengeance of his people,
saying, that for John's sake they must consent to
let* him The prince, who, after I had succeeded in calming his father, gave me an account
of what had happened, told me that it was wholly
out of regard to me, as Thompson was my father,
that his life jj had been spared, for that! if any one
of the tribe should dare to lift a hand against him
in anger, he would most certainly be put to death.
Yet even this narrow' escape produced not much
effect on Thompson, or induced him to restrain
the violence of his temper. For not many weeks
after, he was guilty of a similar indiscretion^, in
striking the eldest son of a chief, who was about
eighteen years old, and according to their custom
was considered as a Tyee, or chief himself, in
consequence of his having provoked him by calling him a white slave. This affair caused great
commotion in the village, and the tribe was very
clamorous for hislleath, but Maquina would not
consent. I used frequently to remonstrate with
him on the imprudence of his conduct and beg
him to govern his temper better, telling« him, it
was our duty, since, our lives were in the power of
these savages, to do nothing to exasperate them.
But all I could say on this point availed little, for
so bitter wTas the hate he felt for them, which' he
was no way backward in manifesting both by his
looks and actions, that he declared he never would
submit. to $their insults, and that he had much
rather be killed than be oblige#d to live among
them, adding that he only-wished he had a good
vessel and some guns, and he would destroy the jewitt's narrative
whole of the cursed race; ibr to a brave sailor like
him, who had fought the French and Spaniards
with glory, it was a punishment worse than death
to be a slave to such a poor, ignorant, despicable
set of beings. |i       i .      i
As for myself I thought Very differently. After
returning thanks to that merciful Being who had in
so wonderful a manner softened the hearts of the
savages in my favour, I had determined from the
first of my capture to adopt a conciliating conduct
towards them, and conform myself, as far as was
in my power, to their customs and mode of thinking, trusting that the same divine goodness that
had rescued me from death, would not always suffer me to languish in captivity among these heathen. With this view I sought to gain their good
will by always endeavouring to assume a cheerful
countenance, appearing pleased with their sports
and buffoon tricks, making little ornaments for the
wives and children of the .chiefs, by whicli means
I became quite a favorite with them, and fish
hooks, daggers, &c. for themselves. As a farther
recommendation to their favour, and what might
eventually prove of the utmost importance to* us, I
resolved to learn their language,* which in the
course of a few months residence, I so far succeeded in acquiring, as to be able in general to
make myself well understood.! I likewise tried to
persuade Thompson to learn it as whsft might prove
necessary to him. JBut he refused, saying, that
he hated both them and their cursed lingo, and
would have nothing to do with it. , ;J| M
* By pursuing this conciliatory plan, so far did I
gain the good wjrll of the savages, -particularly the
chiefs, that I scarcely ever failed*experiencing kind
treatment from 'them, and was received with a
* 50
smile of welcome at their houses, where I was
always sure of having something given me to ^at,
whenever they had it, and many a good meal have
I had from them, when they themselves were short
of provisions and suffering for the want of them.
And it was a common practice with me when we
had nothing to eat at home which happened not
unfrequently during my stay among them, to go
around the village, and on noticing a smoke from
any of the houses, which denoted that they were
cooking, enter in without ceremony and ask them
for something, which I was never refused. Few
nations indeed, are there, so very rude and unfeeling, whom constant mild treatment and an attention
to please, will not mollify and obtain from them
some return of kind attention. This, the treatment I received from these people may exemplify,
for not numerous, even among those calling themselves civilized,)are there instances to be found of
persons depriving themselves of food to give it to
a stranger, whatever may be his merits.
m It may perhaps be as well in this place to give
a description of Nootka, some accounts of the
tribes who were accustomed to visit us, and the
manners and customs of the people, as far as I
hitherto had an opportunity of observing them.
The village of Nootka, is situated in between
49 and 50 deg. N. lat. at the bottom of Friendly
Cove, on the West or North West side. It con-
Sists of about twenty houses or huts, oh a small
hill which rises with a gentle ascent from the shore.
Friendly Cove which affords good and secure anchorage for ships close in with the shore is a small
harbour 6i not more than a 'quarter or half a mile
in length, and about half a mile or three quarters
broau  formed by the line of coast on the East* JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
and a long point, or headland which extends as-
much as three leagues into the sound in nearly a
Westerly direction. This as well as I can judge
. from what I have seen of it, is in general from one
to two miles in breadth, and mostly a rocky and
unproductive soil with but few trees. The Eastern and Western shores of this harbour are ste'ep,
and in many parts rocky, the trees growing quite
to the water's edge, but the bottom to the North
and North-West is a fine sandy beach of half a
mile or more in extent. From the village to the
North and North-East extends a plain, the soil of
which is very .excellent, and with proper cultivation may be made to produce almost any of our
European vegetables; this is but little more than
half a mile in breadth, and is terminated by the sea
coast, which in thi^ place is lined with rocks and
reefs and cannot be approached by ships. The
coast in the neighbourhood of Nootka is in general low and but little broken into hills and vallies.
The soil is good, well covered with fine forests of
pine, spruce, beach and other trees, and abounds
with streams of the finest water, the .general appearance being the same for many miles round.
The village is situated on the, ground occupied
by the Spaniards, when they kept a garrison here;
the foundations of the church and the governor's
house are yet visible, and a few European plants
are still to be found, which continue to be self-
propagated, such as onions, peas, and turnips, but
the two last are quite small, particularly the turnips, which afford us nothing but the tops for eating. Their former village stood on the same spot,
but the Spaniards finding it a commodious situa-*
tion, demolished the houses and forced the inhabitants to retire five or six miles into* the country.
. i-Mrf
With great sorrow, as Maquina told me, did they
find themselves compelled to quit their ancient
place of residence, but with equal joy did they
repossess themselves of it when the Spanish garrison was expelled by the English.C I
'The houses as I have observed are above twenty in number, built nearly in a line. IThese are
of different sizes according to the rank or quality
of the Tyee, or chief, who lives in them, each
having one, of which he is considered as the lord.
They vary not much in width, being usually from
thirty-six to forty feet wide, but are of very different lengths, that of the king which is much the
longest being about one hundred and fifty feet,
while the smallest which contain only two families
do not exceed forty feet in length, the house of
the king is also distinguished j from the others by
being higher.
Their method of building, is as follows, they
erect in the ground two'very large posts at such a
distance apart ag is intended for the length of the
house. On these, which are of equal height*, and
hollowed out at the upper end,, they lay a large
spar for the' ridgepole of the ^building, or if the
length of the house requires it, twp or more, supporting their ends by similar upright posts; these
spars are sometimes of an almost incredible size,
having myself measured one in Maquina's house
which I found to be one hundred feet long and
eight feet four inches in circumference. At'equal
distances from these two posts two others are
placed on each side, to form the width of the
building; these are rather shorter than the first,
and on them are laid in like manner spars, but of
a smaller size, having the upper part hewed flat,
with a narrow ridge on the outer side to support
2i#»wn the ends of the planks.    The roof is formed of
pine planks wdth a broad feather edge, so as to lap
well over each other, which are laid lengthwise
from the ridgepole in the .centre, to the" beams at
the sides,  after which the  top  is  covered with
planks of eight feet broad, which form a kind of
covering projecting so far over the ends of the
planks, that form the roof, as completely to exclude the rain.    On these they lay large stones to
prevent their being displaced by the wind. ..The
ends of the planks are not secured to the beams oji
which they are laid by any fastening, so that in a
high storm I have often known all the men obliged
to turn out and go upon the roof to prevent them
from being blown off, carrying large stones and
pieces of rock with them to secure the boards, always stripping themselves naked on these occasions
whatever mav be the severitv of the weather, to
prevent their garments from being wet and muddied, as these storms are almost always accompanied with heavy rains.    The sides of their houses
are much more open and exposed to the weather,
this proceeds from* their not being so easily made
close as the roof, being built with planks of about
ten feet long and four or five wide, wdiich they
place betWeen stancheons or small posts of- the
height of the roof, of these th^re are four to each
range of boards, two at each end and so near each
other as to leave space * enough for admitting a
plank/   The planks or boards which they make
use of for building their houses, and for other uses,
they procure of different lengths as occasion requires, by splitting -them out, with hard wooden
wedges from pine logs,,  and afterwards dubbing
them down with their chizzels, with much patience,
5*   *
f m
<■   ,■'-■;
to  the  thickness wanted, rendering  them quitd
smooth.      f|" f"'   W • ■ -*' /%: :" '      -^p
There is but one entrance; this is placed usually at the end, though sometimes in the middle as
was that of Maquina's. Through the middle of
the building from one end to the other, runs a
passage of about eight or nine feet broad, on each
side of which, the several families that occupy it,
live, each 'having its particular fire-place, but without any kind of wall or separation to mark their
respective limits; the chief having his apartment
at the upper end, and the ijext in rank opposite on
the other side. They have no other floor than
the ground i >the fireplace or hearth consists of a
number of stones loosely put together, but they
are wholly without a chimney, nor js there any
opening left in the roof, but whenever a fire is
made, the plank immediately over it is thrust aside,
by-means of a pole, to give vent to the smoke.
The height of the houses in general, from the
ground to the centre of the roof does not exceed
ten feet, that pf Maquina's was not far from fourteen; the spar forming the ridgepole of the latter
was painted in red and black circles alternately by
way of ornament, and the large posts that supported it had their tops curiously wrought or carved,
so as to represent human heads of a monstrous size,
which were painted in their manner. These were
not, however, considered as objects of adoration,
but merely as ornaments.
The fiirniture of these people is very simple,
and consists only of boxes in which they put their
clothes, furs, and such things as they hold most val-,
uable; tubs for keeping their provision of spawn and
blubber in; trays from which they eat; baskets for JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
tfeir dried fish and other purposes, and bags made
of /bark matting, of which they also make their
beds, spreading a piece of it upon the ground when
they lie ddwn, and using no orner bed covering
than their garments. The boxes are of pine, with
a top that shuts over, and instead of nails or pegs
are fastened with flexible twigs, they are extremely smooth and high polished, and sometime^ ornamented with rows of very sm^l white shells.
The tc8)s are of a square form, secured^ the like
manned and of various sizes, some beifig extremely large, having seen themAat were six feet long
by four broad and'five deep. The Trays are hollowed out with their chizzels from a solid block of
wood, and the baskets and mats are made from tHe
bark of trees. From this .they likewise make the
cloth forftheir garments, in the following manner.
A quantify of this bark is taken and/put into fresh
water where it is kept*for a fortnight to give it
time to completely soften; it is then taken out arid
beaten upon a plank, with an instrument made of
bone or some very hard wood, having grooves or
hollows on one sMe of it, care being4aken to keep
the mass constantly moistened with water, in order
to separate with more ease the hard and woody
from the soft and fibrous parts, which, when completed,'they parcel out into skeins, like thread.
These they lay in the air to bleach, and afterwards
dye them black or red as suits their fancies, their
natural colour being a pale yellow. In order to
form the cloth, the women by whom the whole of
this process is performed, take a certain number of
thes# skeins and twist them together by rolling
them with their hands upon their knees, into hard
rolls, which are afterwards connected by means of
^strong; thread made for the purpose.
1 56
jeSwitt's narrative
I ftp
||| Their dress usually consists of but a single garment, which is a loose cloak or mantle (called
Kutsack) in one piece, reaching nearly to the feet.
This is! tied, loosely over the right or left shoulder
so as to leave the arms at full liberty. ^||:-   ||i
Those^)f the common people are painted red
with ochre the better to keep out the rain, but the
chiefs wear them of their native colour, which is
a pale yellow, ornamenting them with borders of
the sea otter skin, a kind of grey cloth made of
the hair of some animal which they procure from
the tribes to the South, or their own cloth wrought
or painted with various* figures in red or black,
representing men's heads, the sun and moon, fish
#nd animals, which are frequently 'executed writh
much skill. They have also a*girdle of the same
kind for securing this mantle, or Kutsack) around
them, which is in general still more highly ornamented, and serves them to wear their daggers and
knives in. |In winter however,, they sometimes
make use of an additional garment, which is a kind
of hood, with a hole in it for the purpose of admitting the head, and falls over the breast and back
as low as the shoulders; this is bordered both at
toj) and bottom with fur, and is never worn except
when they go out. The garments of the women
vary not essentially from those of the men, the
mantle having holes in it for the purpose of admitting the arms, and being tied clos£ under the chin,
instead of over the shoulder. The chiefs have
also mantles of the sea otter skin, but these are
only put on upon extraordinary occasions, and one
that is made from the skin of a certain large animal, wThich is brought from the South by the
Wickanninish and Kla-iz-zarts. This they prepare by dressing it in warm water, scraping off
ffie hair and what flesh adheres to it carefully with
sharp muscle shellsY and spreading it out in the
sun to dry, on a wooden frame, so as to preserve
the shape. When dressed in this manner it becomes perfectly white and as pliable as the best
deer's leather, but almost as thick again, | They
then paint it in different figures with such paints as
they usually employ in decorating their persons:
these figures mostfy represent human heads, canoes
employed in catching whales, &c. This slqn is<
called Metamelth and is probably got from an animal of the moose kind, it is highly prized by these
people, is their great war dress, and only worn
when they wish to make the bes| possible display
of themselves.. Strips or bands of it, painted as
above, are also sometimes used by them for girdles or the bordering of their cloaks, and also for
bracelets and ancle ornaments by some of the inferior class.
On their heads when they go out upon any ex-
cjiirsion, particularly whaling 6r fishing, they wear
-a kind of cap or bonttet in form not unlike a large
sugar loaf with the top cut off. j This is made of
the same materials with their cloth, but is in general of a closer texture and by way of tassel has a
long strip of the skin of the Metamelth attached to
it, covered with rowrs of small ifhite shells or
beads. Those worn by the commori people are
painted entirely red, the chiefs having theirs of
different colours. The one worn by the king and
whifch serves to designate him, from all the others,
is longer and broader at the bottom; the top, instead of being flat, having unon it an ornament in
the figure of a small urn. It is also of a much
Hifer texture than the others and plaited or wrought
I in black and white stripes with the representation
I 58
1/        "W:   Wi    W
in front of a canoe in pursuit of a whale with the
harpooner standing in the prow prepared to strike.
This bonnet is called Seeya-poks. jf     ;W
Thefr mode of living is very simple-*—their food
consisting almost wholly of fish, or fish spawn fresh
or dried, the blubber of the whale, seal, or sea-cow,
muscles, clams, and berries of various kinds; all
of which are eaten wTith a profusion of train oil for
sauce, not excepting even the most delicate fruit,
as strawberries■ and raspberries. With so little
variety.initheir food, no great can be expected, in
their cookery. Of this, indeed, they may be said
to know but two methods, viz. by boiling and steaming, and even the latter is not very frequently practised by them. Their mode of boiling is as follows:
into one of their tubs, they pour water sufficient
to cook the quantity of provision wanted. A number of heated stones are then put in to make it boil,
when the salmon or other fish are put in without
any oilier preparation than sometimes cutting off
the heads, tails and fins, the boiling in the mean
time being kept up by the application of the hot
stones, after which it is left to cook until the whole
is nearly reduced to one mass. It is then taken
out and distributed in the trays. In a similar manner they cook their blubber and spawn, smoked or
dried fish, and in fine, almost every thing they eat,
nothing going down with them lik° broth.
When they cook their fish by steam, which are
usually the heads, tails, and fins of the salmon, cod
and halibut, a large fire is kindled, upon which
they place a bed of stones, whicfi, when the wood
is burnt down, becomes perfectly heated. Layers of green leaves or pine boughs, are then placed upon the stories, and the fish, clams, &c. bfcing
laid upon them, water is poured over them, and JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
the whole closely covered with mats to keep in
the steam. | This is much the best mode of cooking, and clams and muscles done in this manner,
are really excellent. These, as I have said, may
be considered as their only kinds of cookery;
though 1 have in a very few instancies known them,
dress the roe or spawn of the salmon and the herring, when first taken,* in a different manner; this
.was by roasting them, the former being supported
between two split pieces of pine, and ||ie other
having a sharp stick run through it, with one end
fixed in the ground; sprats are also roasted by them
in this way, a number being spitted on onq stick;
and this kind of food, with a little salt, would be
found no contemptible eating even to a European.
At their meals they seat themselves upon the
ground, with their feet curled up under them,
around their trays, which are generally about three
feet long by one board, and from six to eight inches deep, jf In eating they make use of nothing but
their fingers, except for Lie soup or oil, which
they lade out with clam shells. If Around one of
these trays, from four to six persons will seat
themselves, constantly dipping in their fingers or
clam shells, one after the other.-—The king and
chiefs alone have separate trays, from which no
one is permitted to eat with them, except theiqueen,
or principal wife of the chief, and whenever the
king or one of the chiefs wishes to distinguish any
of his people with a special mark of favour on
these occasions, he calls him and gives him some
of the choice bits from his tray. The slaves eat
at the same time, and of the same provisions, faring in this resjfect as well as*their masters, being
seated with the Jfamily and only feeding from separate trays.    Whenever a feast is given by the
) 60
■fa* •
king or any of the chiefs, there is a person who
acts as a master of ceremonies, and whose bu^
neSs it is to receive the guests as they enter the
house and point out to them their respective seats,
\yhich is regulated with great punctiliousness as regards rank; the king occupying the highest or the
seat of honour, his son or brother sitting next him,
and so on with the chiefs according to their quality; the private persons belonging to the same family being always placed together to prevent ^ny
confusion. The women are seldom invited to
their feasj$, and only at thos^ times when a general invitation is given to the village. ;-J    ff
As whenever they cook, they always calculate
to have an abundance for all'{he guests, a profusion
:in this respect being considered as the highest luxury, much n\ore is usually set before them than they [
oan eat. f>That which is left in the king's tray he
sends tp his house for; his family, by one of his
slaves, as do the chiefs theirs, while those who eat
|rpm the same tray and who generally belong to
the same family, take it home as common stock,
or each one receives his portion, which is distributed on the spot. This custom appeared very singular to my companion and myself, and it was a most
awkward thing for us at first, to have to lug home
with us, in our hands or arms, the blubber or fish
that we received at these times; but we soon became reconciled to it, and were very glad of an
opportunity to do it. .
In point of personal appearance the people of
Nootka are among the best looking of any of the
tribes that I have seen. The men,are in general
from about five feet six to five foft eight inches
in height; remarkably straight, of a good form, robust, and strong, with their limb$ in general well jewitt's narrative.
turned and proportioned excepting the legs* and feet,
which are clumsy and ill formed, owing no doubt
to their practice of sitting on them, though I have
seen instances in which tjiey were very well sharped; this defect is more particularly apparent in
the women, who are for the.most part of the time
within doors, and constantly sitting while employed in their cooking and other occupations. The
only instance of deformity that I saw among them
was a man of dwarfish stature; he was thirty yeai^
old and*but three feet three inches high; he had
however no other defect than this diminutive size,
being well made, and as strong and able to bear
fatigue as what they were in. general. Their complexion, when freed from the paint and oil with
which their skins are generally covered, is a brown,
somewhat inclining to a copper cast. \ The shape
of the face is oval; the features are tolerably regular, the lips being thin and the teeth very white
and even: their eyes are black but rather small,
and the nose pretty well formed, being neither flat
nor very prominent: their hair is black, long and
coarse, but they have no beard, completely extirpating it, as well as the hair from their bodies,
Maquina being the only exception, who suffered
his beard to grow on his upper lip, in the manner
of, mustachios, which was considered as 'a mark
of digriity. As to the women they are much
whiter, many of them not being darker than
those in some of the Southern parts of Europe.
They are in general very well looking and
some quite handsome. Maquina'S favorite wife
in particular, who was a Wickinninish princess,
would be considered as a beautiful woman in
any country. She, was ^uncommonly well formed,  tall,   and   of a   majestic  appearancfe:   her
P i  '■■'■■
skin remarkably fair for one of these peopl
with considerable colour, her features handsome
and her eyes black, soft, and languishing; her hair
wras very long, thick, and black, as is that of the
females in general, wdiich is muclusofter than that
of the men; in this they take much pride, frequently oiling and* plaiting it carefully into two broad
plaits, tying the ends with a strip of the cloth of
the country and letting it hang dowii before on
each side of the face. -    # p
The women keep their garments much neater
and' cleaner than the men, and are extremely modest in their deportment and dress; their mantle or
Katsack, which is longer' than that of the men,
reaching quite to their feet, and completely enveloping them, being tied close under me chin, and
bound with a girdle of the same cloth or of sea
otter skin around their waists; it has also loose
sleeves which reach to the elbowrs. Though fond
of ornamenting their persons they are by no means
so partial to paint as the men, merely colouring
their eye-brows black and drawing a bright ^red
stripe from each corner of the mouth towards the
ear. Their ornaments consist chiefly of ear-rings,
necklaces, bracelets, rings for the fingers and ankles, and small nose jewrels, (the latter are however
wholly confined to the wives of the king or chiefs)
these are principally made out of copper or brass,
highly polished and of various forms and sizes; the
nose jewel is usually a small white shell or bead
suspended to a thread. The wives of the common people frequently wear for bracelets and ankle rings, strips of Ithe country cloth or skin of
the Metamelth painted in figures, and those of
the king;' or principal chiefs bracelets, ard necklaces, consisting of a number of strings of ffe-waw, JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
an article much prized by them, and which makes
a very handsome appearance. % This Ife-waw^as
they term it, is a kind of shell of a dazzling whiteness, and as smooth as ivory, it is of a cylindrical
form,' in a slight degree curved, about the size of
a goose quill, hollow, three inches m length and
gradually tapering to a point, which is broken off
by the natives as^it is taken from the water; this
they afterwards string upon threads of bark, and
sell it by the fathom; it forms a kind of circulating
medium among these nations, five fathoms being
considered as the price of a slave their most valuable
species of property. It. is principally obtained
from the Aitizzarts, -a people living about thirty or
forty miles to the Northward, who collect it from
the reefs and sunken rocks with which their coast
abounds, though it is also brought in considerable
quantity from the South.H Their rhode of taking
it has been thus described to me. To one end
of a pole is fastened a piece of plank in which a
considerable number of pine pegs are inserted,
made sharp at the ends; above the plank in order
to sink it, a stone or some weight is tied, and the
other end of the pole suspended to.a long rope;
this is let down perpendicularly by the Ife-w'aw
fishers in those places where that substance is found,
which are usually from fifty to sixty fathoms deep;
on finding the bottom they raise the pole up a few
feet and let it fall, this they repeat a number of
tirhes as if sounding, when they draw it up and
take off the Ife-ivaio which is* found adhering to
the points. This method of procuring it is very
laborious and fatiguing, especially as they seldom
take more than two or three of these shells at a
time, and frequently none. ^^B
^Though the woajen, 3s I have said*, make but
=44^ jewitt's narrative.
little use of paint, the very reverse is thecstse with
the men. In decoding i|^J|, heads and faces
they place their priiujjtpal pri|e, and none of our
mq^t fashionable beaus, when preparing for a grand
ball can be more particular: For I have known
Maquina after having been employed for more than
an hour in,paining his face, rub the whole off and
recommence the operation anew whe$ it did not
entirely please him. The mfpner in which they
&int themselves frequently varies, according to the
occasion, but it oftener is the mere dictate of whim.
—-The most usual method is to paint 'the eye-brows
black, in form of a half moon, and the face red in
small squares, "Hvith the arms.and legs and part of.
the body red; sometimes one half of the face is
painted red in squares, and., the other black; at
others, dotted with red spots, or red and black instead of squares, w^h a variety of other devices,
such as painting one half of the face and body red,
and the other black. But a method of painting
which they sometimes employed, and which they
were much more particular* in, was by laying on the
face a quantity of bear's greasp of about one eighth
of an inch thick; this they raised up into ridges resembling a small bead in joiner's work, with a stick
prepared for the purpose, and then painted them
red, which gave the face a very singular appearance. On extraordinary occasions, the king and^
principal chiefs used to strew over their faces, after painting, a fine black shining powder, procured
from some "mineral, as Maquina told me it was
got from the rocks. This, they call pelpelth, and
value it highly, as, in* their opinion, it serves to
set off their looks to great advantage, glittering,
especially in the sun, like silver.—This article is
^ugbj them in ljag£ by the Nmche$ia$fo a very JEWITT S NARRATIVE
savage* nation who live along way to the North,
from whom they likewise receive a superior kind
of red paint, a species of very fine and rich ochre,
which they hold in much estimation.
Notwithstanding this custom of painting themselves, they make it an invariable practice, both in
summer and winter, to bathe once a day, and sometimes oftener; but as the paint is put on with oil,
it is not much discomposed thereby, and whenever
they wish, to wash it off, they repair to some piece
of fresh water and scour themselves wThh sand or
rushes. 1 . '/'.■-,. ■     f|:
In dressing their heads on occasion of a festival or visit, they are full as particular, and almost
as long, as in painting. The hair, after being well
oiled, is carefully gathered upon the top of the
head and secured by a piece of pine or spruce
bough with the green leaves upon it. After having it properly fixed in this manner, the king and
principal chiefs used to strew all over it the white
down obtained from a species of large brown eagle,
which abounds on this coast, which they are very
particular in arranging so as not to have a single
feather out of place, occasionally wetting the hair
to make it adhere. This, together with the bough,
which is sometimes of considerable size, and stuck
over with feathers by means of turpentine, gives
them a very singular and grotesque appearance,
which they, however, think very becoming, and
the first thing they do on learning the arrival of
strangers is to go and decorate themselves in this
manner. ■ ' d|-     '-%\ :. ••'   ;     If-, :-|||
. The men also wear bracelets of painted leather
or copper, and large ear-rings of the latter—but
the ornament on which they appear to set the most
value, is the nose-jewel, if such an appellation may
6* W. M
fr< 66
be given to the wooden stick, which some of them
employ/or this, purpose. The king and chiefs,
however, wear theitl of a different form, being
either small pieces of polished copper or brass, of
whi&fa I made ni&ny for them, in the shape of hearts
and diamonds, or a1 twisted conical shell about half
an inch in length of a blueish colour and very brigfat,
which is brought from the South. These are suspended by a small wire or string to the b©le, in
the gristle of the nose, which is formed in infancy,
by boring it with a pin, the holetbeing afterwards
( enlarged by the repeated insertion of wooden pegs
of ah increased size, until it becomes about the diameter of a piijie stem, though%ome have them of
a size nearly sufficient to admit tibe little finger.—
The common class who cannot readily procure the
more expensive jewels that I have mentioned,
substitute for them, usually! a.smooth round stick,
some of which are oi an almost incredible length,
fori have seen them projecting not less than eight
or nine inches beyond the face on each sWe; this
is made fast or secured in its place by little wedgj**
es on each side of it. These sprk-sail-yard fellows, as my mess-mate used to call them, when
rigged out id this manner made quite a strange
show, and it was his delight whenever he saw ohe
of them coming towards, us with aaair of consequence proportioned to the length of his stick, to
put up his hand suddenly as he was passing hj^i,
so as to strike the stick, in order, as he saiS, to
brace him up sharp to the wind; this used to make
them very angry, but nothing was. more remote
from Thompson's ideas than the wish to cultivate
theirfavour. t/jj-   ...
The natives of Nootka appear to have but little
inclination for the ohase, though some of them, JEWITT'S NARRATIVE.
Were expert mayksmen, and'used sometimes to
shoot ducks and geese, but the seal and the sea-
otter form the principal objects of their hunting,
particularly the latter. Of this animal, so much
iffoted fer its valuable skin, the following description may not be uninteresting. The sea-otter is
nearly five feet in length, exclusive of the tail,
whic^ltf about twelve inches, and is very thick
and broad where it joins the bodyf but gradually
tapers to the end, which is tipped wifh white.
pThe colour of the rest is a shining silky black,
with the exception of a broad white stripe on the
top* of the head. Nothing more beautiful
than tfne of these animals when seen swimming,
especially when on the lookout mv any object.
At such times it raises its head quite above the
surface, and the contrast between the shining,
black and the white, together with its sharp ears
and a long gift of hair rising from the middle of
itS\ forehead, which look like three small horns,
render it quite a novel and attractive object*
They are in general veryttame, and will permit a
canoe or boat'to approach very near before they
dive.* I ^vtts told, however, that they are become
much more shy since they have been accustomed
to shoot them with muskets, than when they used
only arrows. The skin is held in great estimation
in China, n!6re especially that of the tail, the fur
of which is finer and closer set than that on the
body. This is always cut off and sold separately
by the natives. The* value of a skin is determin-*
* ed by its size, that being considered as a prime
skin which will reach, in length, from a man's
chin to his feet.' The food of the sea-otter is
fish, which he is very dexterous; in taking, being
an excellent swimmer, with feet webbed like those 68
of a goose.—They appear to be wholly confined
to the sea-coast, at least to the salt water. They
have usually three or four young at a time, but I
know not how often they breed, nor in what places
they deposit their young, though I have frequently I
seei%them swimming around the mother when no
larger than rats. The flesh is eaten by the natives, cooked in their usual mode by boiling, and,;
is far preferable to that of the seal of which they
make much account.
But if not great hunters there are few people
more expert in fisbing. Their lines are generally
made from the sinew of the whale, and are extremely strong. For the hook, they usually make
use of a straight piece of hard wood, in the lower
part of which is inserted and well secured, with
thread or whale sinew, a bit of bone made very
sharp at the point and bearded; but I used to make
for them hooks from iron, which they preferred,
not oqly as being less liable to break, but more
certain of securing the fish. Cod, halibut, and
other seafish were not only caught by them with
hooks, but even salmon. To take this latter fish,
they practise the following method—One person
seats himself in a small canoe, and baiting his hook
with a 'sprat, which they are always careful to procure as fresh as possible, fastens his line to the
handle of the paddle; this, as he plies it in the *
water, keeps the'fish in constant motion, so as to"
give it the appearance of life, wdiich the salmon
seeing, leaps at it and is instantly hooked, and by
ii sudden and dexterous motion of the paddle,«
drawn on board. I have known some of the native^ to take no less than eight or ten salmon of a
morning in this manner, and have seen from twenty to thirty canoes at a time in Friendly Cove thus jewitt's narrative.
employed. They are likewise littleness skilful in
taking the whale. This they kill with a kind of
javelin or harpoon, thus constructed and fitted.
The barbs* are formed of bone which are sharpened on the outer side and hollowed within for the
purpose of forming a socket for the staff; these are
then secured firmly together with whale sinew,
the point being fitted so as to receive a piece of
muscle shell which is ground to a very sharp edge,
and secured in its place by means of turpentine.
To this head or prong is fastened a,strong line of
whale sinew about nine feet in length, to the .end
of which is tied a bark rope from fifty to sixty
fathoms long, having gfrom twenty to thirty seal
skin floats or buoys, attached to it at certain intervals, in Order to check the motion of the whale
and obstruct his diving. In the socket of the harpoon a staff or pole of about ten feet long, gradually tapering from the middle to each-end, is placed: this the harpooner holds in his hand in order
td strike the whale, and immediately detaches it as
soon as the fish is struck. ,The whale is considered as the.king's fishj and no other person, when
he is present, is permitted to touch him until the
royal harpoon has first drawn his blood, however
near he may approach; and it wrould be considered almost as sacrilege for any of the common people to strike a whale,*before he is killed, particularly if any of the chiefs should be present. They
also kill the porpoise and sea cow with harpoons,
but this inferior game is not interdicted the lower
'class. _: • $| ■#) •"' ■■.-•■'■';■■ <\ -'*'' ' $%
With regard to their canoes, some of the handsomest to be found on the whole I coast?are made
at Nootka, though very fine ones are brought by
the Wickanninish and the Klaiz-zarts, who have
K tv
li! "
them more highly ornamented.    They are $|Lal!
si^es, from such as are capable of holding only one
person to their largest war canoes which will c$rry
forty men, and are extremely light. :|Of^these, the
largest of any that I ever sawr, was one belonging
to Maquina, which I measured and found to be
forty-two feet six incl$ps in length at the bottom,
and forty-six feet from stem to stern.    These are
made of pine hollowed out from a tree with their
chfeels solely, which are about three inches broad;
and six in length, and set into a handle of very
hard wood.    This instrument was formerly made
of flint or spme hard stone  ground  down to  as
sharp an  edge as possible, but since they have
learnedjthe use of iron, they have almost all of
them of that metal.    Instead of a mallet for strik-
ing this chisel, they make use of a smooth round
stone, whic|i they hold in the palm of the hpd.
With this same awkward instrument they not Oply
excavate their canoes and trays and smooth their
plank, but cut down such trees as they want, either for building, fuel, or o.tlaer purposes,  a labour
which is mostly done by their slaves. SI, '^$.| :J1
t|f The falling of trees as practised by them is Jl
slow and most tedious process, three of them being generally from two to three days in .cjitting
down a large one, yet so attached were th$y to
their own method, that notwithstanding they saw*
Thompson fr6queh$Iy with one of our axes, of
which there was a number saved, fall a tree in less
time than they could have gone round it with their
chisels, still they could not be persuaded to make
use of them/ ^4 ^ /Hi
After hollowing out their canoes, which they do
very neatly, #hey fashion the outside, and slightly
burn it for the purpose of removing apy| splinj&rs JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
or small points that might obstruct its passage
through the water, after which they rub it over
thoroughly, with rushes or coarse mats, in order to
smooth it, which not only renders it almost as
smooth as glass, but forms a better security for
it from the weather; this operation of burning
and rubbijag down the bottoms of their canoes is
practised as often as they acquire any considerable
degree of roughness from use. The outside, by
this means becomes quite black, and to complete
their work'they .paint the i^ide of a bright red,
wifh ochre or some other similar substance; the
prows and sterns are almost ajways ornamented
with figures of ducks or some qifher kind of bird,
the former being so fashioned as to represent the
J|§ad and the latter the tail, these are separate pieces from the canoe, and are fastened to it with
small flexible twigs or bark cord. Some of these
canoes, particularly those employed in whaling,
which will hold about ten men, are ornamented
within about two inches below the gunwale, with
two parallel lines on each side of very s^all white
.jjjjbells running fore and aft, which has a very pretty effect. Their war canoes have no ornament of
this kind but are painted on the outside with figures, in white chalk representing eagles, whales,
human heads, &c. They are very dexterous in
the use of their paddles, which are very |yeatly
wrought), and ar£ five feet long with a short handle
■and a blade seven inches broad in the middle tapering to a sharp point. With these they will make
a canoe skim very swiftly on the water with scarcely any noise, while they keep time to the stroke
of the paddle with their songs s # / :f|lf
.With regard to these they have a number ^prich
>!:: iiji I
they sing on various occasions; as" war* whaling,
and fishing, at their marrifeges and feasts, and at
public festivals or solemnities. The language of
the most of there appears to be very . different, in
many respects, from that used in their common
conversation, which leads me to believe either
that they have a different mode of expressing themselves in poetry, or that they borrow their songs
from their neighbors, and what the more particularly induces me to the latter opinion, is, that when/
ever any of the Newchemass, a people from the
•Northward and who speak a yery different language, arrived, they used to tell me that they expected a new song, and were almost always sure
to have one.
Their tunes are generally soft and plaintive, and
though not possessing great variety, are not deficient in harmony.—Their singing is.generally accompanied with several rude kinds of instrumental
music; among the most prominent of which is a
kind of drum* This is nothing more than a long
plank hollowed out on the under side and made
quite thin, which is beat upon by a stick of about
a foot long and renders a sound not unlike beating
on the head of an empty cask, but much louder.
But the twro most favorite instruments are the rattle and the pipe or whistle; these are however only used by the king, the chiefs, or some particular
persons; the former is made of dried seal-skin, so
as to represent a fish, and is filled with a numbef
of small smooth pebbles,, it has a short handle and
is painted red. The whistle is made of bone,
generally the leg of a deer, it is short but emits a
* A specimen of one of their war songs will be found at the end
of this work. >
■"i jewitt's narrative.
very shrill sound. They have likewise another
kind of music, which they make use of in dancing,
in the manner of castanets, this is produced by a
number of muscle or cockle shells tied together
and shaken to a kind of tune, which is accompanied with the voice.
»,Their slaves, as I have observed, form their
most valuable species of property.—These are of
both sexes, being either captives taken by themselves in war, or purchased from the neighboring
tribes, and who reside in the same house, forming
as it were a part of the family, are usually kindly
treated, eat of the same food, and live as well as
their masters. They are compelled however at
times to labour severely, as not only all the menial offices are performed by them, such as bringing
water, cutting wood and a varieiy of others, but
they are obliged to make the canoes, to assist in
building and repairing the houses, to supply their
masters with fish, and to attend them to war and
to fight, for them. | None but the king and chiefs
have slaves, the common people being prevented
from holding them either from their inability to
purchase them, or as I am the rajiier inclined to
think from its being considered as the privilege of
the former alone to have them, especially as all
those made war belong either 'to the
king or the chiefs, who have captured them, each
one holding such as have been taken by himself or
)iis slaves. There is probably however some little distinction in favour of the king, who is always
the commander of the expedition, as Maquina had
nearly ♦fifty, male and female, in his house, a number constituting about one half of its inhabitants,
comprehending those obtained by war and purchase,
whereas none of the other chiefs had more than
■■     "^ 74
! ! 11:
twelve. The females are employed principally in
manufacturing cloth, in cooking, collecting berries,
&c. and with regard to food and living in general
have not a much harder lot than, their mistresses,
the principal difference consisting, in these poor
unfortunate creatures being considered as free to
any one, their masters prostituting them whenever
they think proper for the purpose of gain. In this
way many of them are brought on board the ships
and offered to the crews, from whence an opinion
appears to have been formed by some of our navigators, injurious to the chastity of their females,
than which nothing can be more generally untrue,
as perhaps in no part of the world is that virtue
more prized.||y ',"■'f$f    '}':.     jgM  ...       ..*  i
The houses at Nootka as already stated, are
about twenty, without comprising those inhabited
by the Klahars, a small tribe that has been con-*
.quered and incorporated into that of Nootka,
though they must be considered as in a state of
vassalage as they are not permitted to have any
chiefs among them,.and live by themselves in a
cluster of small houses at a little distance from the
village. ;The Nootka tribe which consists of about
five hundred warriors, is not only more numerous
itan almost any of the neighbouring tribes, but far
exceeds them in the strength and martial spirit of
its people; and in fact there are but few nations
within a hundred miles either to the North or
South but are considered as tributary to them.    /
In giving some account of the tribes that were
accustomed to visit Nootka, I shall commence at
the Southward with the Kla-iz-zarts, and the Wick-
inninish, premising that in point of personal appearance there prevails a wonderful diversity between;
the varitaufc tribes on the coast, with the exception JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
of the feet and legs, which are badly shaped in almost all of them from their practice of sitting on
them. The Kla-iz-zarts are a numerous and
powerful tribe, living nearly three Jiundred miles
to the South, and are said to consist of more than
a thousand warriors. They appear to be more
civilized than any of the others, being better and
more neatly dressed, more mild and affable in their
manners, remarkable for their sprightliness and
vivacity, and celebrated for their singing and dancing. They exhibit also great marks of improvement in whatever is wrought by them; their
canoes; though not superior to those of Nootka in
point of form and lightness, being more highly ornamented, and their weapons and tools of every
kind have a much higher finish and display more
skill in the workmanship. Their cast of countenance is very different from that of the Nootkians,
their faces being very broad, with a less prominent
nose and smaller eyes, and the top of the head
flattened as if it had been pressed down with a
weight. Their complexion is also much fairer,
and their stature shorter, though they are well
formed and strongly set. They have a custom
which appears to be peculiar to them, as I never
observed it in any of the other tribes, which is to
pluck out not only their beards, and the hair from
their bodies, but also their eye-brows, so as not
to leave a vestige remaining. They were also in
general more skilful in painting and decorating
themselves, and I have seen some of them With
no less than a dozen holes in each of their ears to
which were suspended strings of small beads about
two inches in length. Their language is the same
as spoken at Nootka, but their pronunciation is
much more hoarse and guttural.    These people
* 76
are not only very expert in whaling, but are great
hunters of the sea otter and other, animals with
which their country is said to abound, as the Metamelth a large animal of the deer kind, thfe skin
of which I have already spoken of, another of a
light grey colour, with very fine hair from which
they manufacture a handsome cloth, the beaver and
a species of large wild cat, or tyger cat.
The Wickinninish, their neighbours on the
North, are about two hundred miles from Nootka.
They are a robust, strong and warlike people, but
considered by the Nootkians as their inferiors in
courage. This tribe is more numerous than that
of Nootjka, amounting to between six and seven
hundred warriors. Though not so civilized as .the
Kla-iz-zarts and less skilful in their manufactures,
like them they employ themselves inr hunting as
well as in whaling and fishiftg. Their faces are
broad but less so than the Kla-iz-zarts, with a
darker complexion, and a much less open and
pleasing expression of countenance, while their
heads present a very different form, being pressed
in at the sides and lengthened towards the top,
somewhat in the shape of a sugar loaf. These
people are very frequent visitors at Nootka, a
close friendship subsisting between the two nations,
Maqunia's Arcomhh, or Queen, Y-ya-tintla-nO)
being the daughter of the Wickinninish king. The
Kla-oo-quates adjoining them on the North are
much less numerous, their force not exceeding
four hundred fighting men; they are also behind
them ia the arts of life. These are a fierce, bold,
and enterprizttig people, and there were none that
visited Nootka, whom. Maquina used to be more
on his guatfd against, or viewed with so much suspicion.    The Eshquates are about the same num- JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
ber; these are considered as tributary to Maquina:
Their coast abounds with rivers, creeks, and
marshes. To the North the nearest tribe of any
importance is the Aitizzarts; these however do not
f&xceed three hundred warriors. In appearance
they greatly resemble the people of Nootka, to
whom tlomy are considered as tributary, their manners, dtfess, and style of living also bemg very
similar. They reside at about forty miles distance
up the sound. A considerable way further to the
northward are the Cayuquets; these are a much
more numerous tribe than that of Nootka, but
thought by the latter to be deficient in courage and
martial spirit, Maquina having frequently told me
that their hearts were little like those of birds.
There are also both at the North and South
many other intervening tribes, but in general small
in number and insignificant, all of whom as well as
the above mentioned speak tie same language.
But the Newchemass who come from a great way
to the Northward, and from some distance inland,
as I was told by Maquina, speak quite a different
language, although it is well understood by those
of Nootka. These were the most savage looking
and ugly men that I ever saw, their complexion
being much darker, their stature shorter, and their
hair coarser, than that of the other nations, and
their dress and appearance dirty in an extreme.
They wear their beards long like Jews, and have
a very morose and surly countenance. Their usual
dress is a Kootsuck made of wolf skin, with a
number of the tails attached to it, of which I have
seen no less than ten on one garment, hanging from
the top to the bottom; though they sometimes
wear a similar mantle of bark cloth, of a much
coarser texture win that of Nootka, the original
w 7*
I» I
colour of which appears to be the same, though
from their very great filthiness, it was almost impossible to discover what it had been. Their,
mode of dressing their hair also varies essentially
from that of the other tribes, for they suffer that
on the back of the head to hang loose, and bind
the other over their foreheads in the manner of a
fillet, with a strip of their country cloth, ornamented with small white shells. Their weapons are
the Cheetoolth, or war club, which is*made from
whale bone, daggers, bows and arrow's, and a kind
of spear pointed with bone or copper.- They
brought with them no furs for sale, excepting a few
wolfskins, their merchandize consisting principally of the black shining mineral called pelpelth, and
the fine red paint which they carefully kept in
close mat bags, sonje small dried salmon, clams,
and roes of fish, with occasionally a little coarse
matting cloth. They were accustomed to remain
a much longer time at Nootka than the other
tribes, in order to recover from the fatigue of a
long journey, part of which was over land, and on
these occasions taught their songs to our savages.
The trade of most of the other tribes with Nootka
was principally train oil, seal or whale's blubber,
fish fresh or dried, herring or salmon spawn, clams,
and muscles, and #ie yama, a species of fruit
which is pressed and dried; cloth, sea otter skins,
and slaves. From the Aitizzarts, and the Cayuquets, particularly the former, the * best I-whaw
and in the greatest quantities ^s obtained. The
Eshquates furnished us with W$d ducks and geese,
particularly the latter. The/Wickinninish and
Kla-iz-zarts brought to market many slaves, the
best sea otter skins, great quantities of oil, whale
sinew, and cakes of the yama, highly ornamented JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
canoes, some I-whaw, red ochre and pelpelth of
an infetior quality to tha% obtained from the New-
pfaemass, but particularly the so much valued McU
ameltk^ond an excellent root called by theKla-iz-
zartS/ Quawnoose. This is the size of a small onion, but rather longer, being of a tapering form
like a pear, and of a*brownish colour. It is cooked by steam, is always brought in baskets ready
prepared for eating,* and is in truth a very fine vegetable, being sweet, mealy and of a most agreeable flavour. It was highly esteemed by the natives who used to eat it as they did everything else
with train oil.—From the Kla-iz-zarts was also received, though in no great quantity, a cloth manufactured by them from the fur already spoken of,
which feels like wool and is of a grey colour.
Many of the articles thus brought, particularly
the provisions, were considered as presents, or
tributary offerings, but this must be viewed as little more than a nominal acknowledgment of superiority, as they rare|y failed to get the full amount
of the value of their presents. I have known
eighteen of the great tubs, in which they keep
their provisions, filled with spawn brought in this
way. On these occasions R great feast is always
made, to which.not only the strangers, but the
whole village, men, women, and children are generally invited^ and I have seen five of the largest
tubs employed at such time in cooking at the
king's house. At these feasts they, generally indulge in eating to an excess, making up in this
respect for their want of inebriating liquors, which
they know no. method of preparing in any form,
their only drink "being water. %   M-
Whenever they came to visit or trade it wras
their general custom, to stop a few miles distant
I 80
* under the lee of some bluff or rock, and rig themselves out in their best #nanner, by painting and
dressing their heads. On theif first coming on
shore, they Were invited to eat by the king, when
they brought to him, such articles as he wanted,
after which the rest of the inhabitants were permitted to purchase, the strangers being careful to
keep then! in their canoes until sold, under str&$|
guard to prevent their being stolen, the disposition
of these people for thieving being so great, that it
is necessary to keep a watchful eye upon them. i||
This was their usual mode of traffick, but whenever they wished to purchase any particular object,
as for instance, a certain slave, or some other
thing of which they were very desirous, the canoe
that came for this purpose would lie on at a little
distance from the shore, and a land of embassador
or representative of the king or chief by whom it
was sent, dressed in their best manner, and with
his head covered with the white down, would rise,
and after making known the object of his mission
in a pompous speech, hold up specimens of such
articles as he was instructed to offer in payment,
mentioning the number or quantity of eafch, when
if the bargain was concluded, the exchange was
immediately made.
On their visits of friendship or traffick, the
chiefs alone used to sleep on shore, this was generally at the house of the king or head chief, the
others passing the night on board of their canoes,
which was done not only for the preservation of
their property, but because they wfcre not permitted to remain on shore, lest they might excite
some disturbance or commit depredations *#
All these people generally go armed, the common class wearing only a'dagger, suspended from JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
their .neck^behind, with a string of metamelth, and
sometimes thrust in their girdles. The chiefs in
addition to the dagger carry the Cheetoolth, or
war-club suspended in the same manner beneath
their mantles; this in the hands of a strong man is
a powerful weapon, in the management of which,
some of the older chiefs are very dexterous. It
is made from the bone of a whale, and is very
heavy. The blade is about eighteen inches long
and three broad, till it approaches near the point,
where it expands to the breadth of four inches.
In the middle, from whence it slopes off gradually
to an edge on each side, it is frofn one to.two
inches in thickness. This blade is usually covered with figures of the sun and moon, a man's head,
&c. and the hilt which is made to represent the
head of a man or some animal, is curiously set
with small white shells, and has a band of metamelth fastened to it in order to sling it lover the
shoulder. Some of the tribes have also a kind of
spear headed with copper or the bone of the'sting
ray, which is a dangerous weapon; this is however
not usual, and only carried ])y the chiefs. The
bow and arrow are still used by a few, but since
the introduction of fire arms among them, this
weapon has been mostly laid aside.
But to return to our unhappy situation. Though
my comrade and myself fared as well, and even
better than we could have expected among these
people, considering their customs and mode of
living, yet our fears lest no ship would come to
our release, and that we should never more behold
a Christian country, were to us a source, of constant/pain. JrOur principal consolation in this
gloomy state, was to go on Sundays, whenever
the wreather would permit, to the borders of a
*S>fc •J«n^
jewitt's narrative.
fresh water pond, about a mile from the village,
where, after bathing, and putting on clean clothes,
we would seat ourselves under the shade of a
beautiful pine, while I read some chapters in the
Bible, and the prayers appointed by our Church
for the day, ending our devotions with a fervent
prayer to the Almighty that he would deign still to
watch over and preserve our lives, rescue us from
the hands of the savages, and permit us once more
to behold a,Christian land. In this manner were
the greater part of our Sundays passed at Nootka;
and I felt grateful to heaven, that amidst our other
sufferings, we were at least allowed the pleasure
of offering up our devotions unmolested, for Maquina, on my explaining to him as well as was in
my power the reason of our thus retiring at this
time, far from objecting, readily consented to it.
The pond above mentioned was small, not more
than a quarter of a mile in breadth: and of no great
length, the water being Very clear, though not of
great depth, and bordered by a beautiful forest of
pine, fir, elm, and beach, free from bushes and
underwood—a most delightful retreat, which was
rendered still more attractive by a great number
of birds that frequented it, particularly the humming bird. Thither we used to go to wash our
clothes, and felt secure from any intrusion from
the natives, as they rarely visited it except for the
purpose of cleansing themselves of their paint.
In July we at length thought that the hope of delivery we had so long anxiously indulged, was on the
point of being gratified. A ship appeared in the
offing, but alas, our fond hopes vanished almost as
soon as formed; for instead of standing in for the
shore she passed to the northward and soon disappeared.    I shall not attempt to describe our disap- jewitt's narrative
pointment—my heart sunk within me, aud I felt as
though it was my destiny never more to behold a
Christian face. Four days after there occurred a
tremendous storm of thunder and lightning, during
which the natives manifest great alarm and terror,
the whole tribe, hurrying to Maquina's house,
where, instead of keeping within, they seated
themselves on the roof amid the 'severest of the
tempest, drumming upon the boards, and looking
up to heaven, while the king beat the long hollow
plank, singing, and as he afterwards told me, begging Quahootze, the ^name they gave to God, not
to kill them, in which he was accompanied by the
whole tribe; this singing and drumming was continued until the storm abated.     If
As the summer drew near its close, we began
to suffer from the frequent want of food, which
was principally owing to Maquina and the chiefs
being out whaling, in which he would not permit
Thompson and myself to join, lest we should
make our escape to some of the neighbouring
tribes. At these times the women seldom or ever
cook any provision, and we were often hungry,
but were sometimes fortunate enough to procure
secretly, a piece of salmon, some other fish, spawn,
or even blubber, which, by boiling in salt water,
with a few onions and turnips, the remains of the
Spanish garden, or young nettles and other herbs,
furnished us a delicious repast in private. In the
aaaean time, we frequently received accounts from
the tribes who came to, Nootka, both from the *
Bprth and south, of there being vessels on the
coast, and were advised by their chiefs to make
our escape, who also promised us their aid, and to
pul us on board. These stories, however, as I
afierwards learned, were almost all of them with-
■11 i.T**««f
jewitt's narrative.
out any foundation, and merely invented by these
people with a view to get us into their power in
order to make slaves of us themselves, or to sell
us to others. But I was still more strongly solicited to leave Nootka by a woman. This wras a
Wickinninish princess, a younger sister of Maquina ?s wife, who was there on a visit. I had the-good
fortune, if*, it may be so called, to become quite a
favourite with her. She appeared much interested
for me—asked me many questions respecting my
country, if I had a mother and sister at home, and
if they would not grieve, for my absence.. Her
complexion wasjairer than that of the women in general, and her features more regular, and she would
have been quite handsome had it not been for a defect in one of her eyes, the sight of which had
been injured by some accident, the reason, as
Maquina told me, why she had not been married, a
defect of this kind being by these savages considered as almost an insuperable objection. She
urged me repeatedly to return with her, telling me
that the Wickinninish were much better than the
Nootkians; that her father would treat me more
kindly than Maquina, give me better food and
clothes, and finally put me on board one of my own
country vessels. I felt, however, little disposed
to accompany her, considering my situation with
Maquina full as eligible as it would be with the
Wickinninish, if not better, notwithstanding all she
said to the contrary,  m. ':m^' :^»S^ -
^ On the third of September, the whole tribe
quitted Nootka, according!to their constant practice, in order to pass the autumn  and winter at
i|Tashees and Cooptee,,the latter lying about thirty
miles up the Sound in a deep bay, the navigation
of which is very dangerous from the great number jewitt's narrative
of reefs and rocks with which it abounds. On
these occasions every thing is taken with them,
even the planks of their houses, in order to cover
their new dwellings. To an European, such a.
removal exhibits a scene quite novel and strange:
canoes piled up with boards^and boxes, and filled
with men, women and children of all ranks and
sizes, making the air resound with their cries and
songs. j At these times, as well as when they have
occasion to go some distance from their houses,
the infants are usually suspended across the mother's shoulders, in a kind of cradle or hammock,
formed of bark, of about six inches in depth, and
of the length of the child, by means of a leather
band inserted through loops on its edger; this they
also keep them in when at home, in order to preserve them in a straight position, and prevent any
distortion of the limbs, most probably a principal
cause of these people being so seldom deformed or
t The long boat of our ship having been j repaired and furnished with a sail by Thompson,
Maquina gave us the direction of it, we being better acquainted with managing it than his people,
and after loading her as deep as she could swim,
we proceeded in company with them to the north,
quitting Nootka with heavy hearts, as we could
entertain no hopes of release until our return, no
ships ever coming to that part of the coast. Passing Cooptee, which is situated on the southern
bank, just within the mouth of a small river flowing from the east in a narrow valley at the foot of
a mountain, we proceeded about fifteen miles up
this stream to Tashees, between a range of lofty
hills on each side, which extend a great distance
ia-laad, and are povered with the finest forest
ft alf>
wfc 86
„jewitt's narrative.
trees of the country. || Immediately on our arrival,
we all went to work very diligently in Covering the
houses with the planks we had brought, the frames
being ready erected, these people never pfetend*
ing to remove the timber. In a very short time
the work was completed, and we were established
in our new residence. j^ ..f'ii
Tashees is pleasantly situated and in a most secure position from the winter storms, in ^ small
vale or hollow on the south shore, at the foot of a
mountain. The spot on which it stands is level,
and the soil very fine, the country in its vicinity
abounding with the most romantic views, charmingly diversified, and fine streams of water falling
in beautiful cascades from the mountains. The
river at this place is about twenty rods in width,
and in its deepest part, from nine to twelve feet.
This village is the extreme point of navigation, as
immediately beyond, the river becomes much more
^hallow, and is broken into rapids* and falls. $j/£iie
houses here are placed in a line like those at Nootka, but closer together, the situation being more
confined they are also smaller, in consequence of
which we were much crowded, and incommoded
for room.
The principal object in coming to this place, is
the facility it affords these people of providing
their winter stock of provisions, which consists
principally of salmon, and the spawn of that fi&h;
to which may be added herring and sprats, and
herring $pawn. The latter, however, is always
procured by them at Nootka, previous to their
quitting it. At the seasons of spawning, which
are early in the spring land the last of August, they
collect a great quantity of pine branches, which
they place in different parts of the Cove at the JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
depth of about ten feet and securef|theni by m&$ns
of heavy stones. On these the herring deposit
their spawn in immense quantities; the bushes are
then taken up, the spawn stripped from the branches, and after being washed and freed from the
pine leaves by the women, is dried and put up in
baskets for use|l It is considered as their greatest
delicacy, and eaten both cooked and raw: in the
former case, being boiled and eaten with train oil,
and in the latter, mixed up with cold water alone.
The salmon are taken at Tashees, principally in
p6ts or wears. Their method of taking them in
wears is thus:—A pot of twenty feet in length,
and from four to five feet diameter at the mouth, is
formed of a great number of pine splinters which are
strongly secured, an inch and a half from each other, by means of hoops made of flexible twigs, and
placed about eight inches apart. At the end it
tapers almost to a point, near which is a small
wicker door, for the purpose of taking out |he fish.
This pot or wear is placed at the foot of a fall or
rapid, where the water is not very deep, and the
fish driven froirt above with long poles, are intercepted and caught in tjie wear, from whence they
are taken into the canoes. In this manner I have
seen more than seven hundred salmon caught in
the space of fifteen minutes. I have also . sometimes known a few of the striped bass taken in this
manner but rarely.
At such times there is great feasting and merriment among them. The women and female slaves
being busily employed in cooking', or in curing
the fish for their winter stock, which is done by
cutting off the heads and tails, splitting them, taking out the back bone, and hanging them up in
their houses to dry.    They also dry the halibut
r 88
and cod, but these instead of curing whole they
cut up into small pieces for that purpose/and expose to the sun. The spawn of the salmon, which
is a principal article of their provision, they take
out, and without any other preparation, throw it
into their tubs, where they leave it to stand and
ferment, for though they frequently eat it fresh,
they esteem it much more when it has acquired a
strong taste, and one of the greatest favours they
can confer on any person, is to invite him to eat
Quakamiss, the name they give this food, though
scarcely any thing can be more repugnant to a European palate, than it is in this state; and whenever they took it out of th^se large receptacles,
which they are always careful to fill; such was the
ftench which it exhale.d, on being moved, that it
uas almost impossible for me to abide it, even after habit, had in a great degree dulled the delicacy
of jny senses.—When boiled it became less offensive, though it still retained much of the putrid
smell and something of the taste. i|
Such, is the immense quantity of these fish, and
they are taken with such facility, that I have known
upwards of twenty-five hundred brought into Ma-
quina's house at once, and at one of their great
feasts, have seen one hundred or more cooked in
one of their largest tubs. :^w
I used frequently to go out with Maquina upon
these fishing parties, and was always sure to receive a handsome present of salmon, which I had
the privilege of calling mine; I also went with him
several times in a canoe, to strike the salmon,
which I have attempted to do myself, but could
never succeed, it requiring a degree of adroitness
that I did not possess. I was "also permitted to
go out with a gun, and was several times very sue- JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
cessful in shooting wild ducks, and teal, which
are very numerous here, though rather shy. | These
they cooked in their usual manner, by boiling, without any farther dressing than skinning them.    In
many  respects, however, our situation was less
pleasant here than at Nootka.    We were more
incommoded for room, the houses not being so spacious, nor so well arranged, and as it was colder,
we were compelled to be much more within doors.
We however, did not neglect on Sundays, when
the weather would admit, to retire into the woods,
and by the* side of some stream, after bathing, return our thanks to God for preserving us,  and
offer up to him our customary devotions.    I was
however, very apprehensive, soon after our arrival
at this place, that I  should be deprived of the
satisfaction of keeping my journal, as Maquina one
day observing me writing in it, enquired of me
what I was doing, and when I endeavoured to explain it, by telling him that I was keeping an account
of the weather, he said it was not so, and that I
was speaking bad about him and telling how he
had taken our ship and killed the crew, so as to
inform my countrymen, and that if he ever saw
me writing in it again, he would throw it into the
fire.    I was much rejoiced that he did no more
than threaten, and became very cautious afterwards
not to let him see me write.      ^ \i
Not long after I finished some daggers for him,
which I polished highly; these pleased him much,
and^he gave me directions to make a cheetoolth,
in which I succeeded so far to his satisfaction,
that he gave me a present of cloth sufficient to
make me a complete suit of raiment, besides other
things. Thompson, also, who had become rather
more of a favourite than formerly, since he had
H 8* 'r.M
I 1
made a fine sail for his canoe, and some garments
for him out of European cloth, about this time
completed another, which was thought by the savages a most superb dress. This was a Kootsuk
or mantle, a fathom square, made entirely of European vest patterns of the gayest colours. Theae
were sewed together, in a manner to make the
best show, and bound with a deep trimming of the
finest otter skin, with which the arm-holes were
also bordered; while the bottom was farther embellished with five or six rows of gik buttons, placed as near as possible to each other. Nothing
could exceed the pride of Maquina when he first
put on this royal robe, decorated like the coat of
Joseph, with all the colours of the rainbow, and
glittering with the buttons, which as he strutted
about made a tinkling, while he repeatedly exclaimed in a transport of exultation, Klew shish
Katsuck—wick kum atack Nootka. A fine garment—Nootka cant majce him.    f
Maquina, who knew that the chiefs of the tribes
who came to visit us, had endeavoured to persuade
me to escape, frequently cautioned me not to listen
to them, saying that should I 'make the attempt,
and he*Were to take me, he should certainly put
me to death. While here he gave me a book in
which I found &e names of seven persons belonging to the ship Manchester of Philadelphia, Capt.
Brian, viz.—Daniel Smith, Lewis GMloii, James
Tom, Clark, Johnson, Ben and Jack. These
men, as Maquina informed me, ran away from the
.ship, and came to him, but that six* of diem soon
after went "off in the night, with an intention to go
to the Wickinninish, But were stopped by the
Eshquiates, and sent back to him, and that he ordered them to be put to death; and a most cruel JfcWITT*S NARRATIVE.
death it was, as I was told by one the natives,
four men holding one of them on the ground, and
forcing open his mouth,-while they choaked him
by ramming stones down his throat. As to Jack the
boy, who made no attempt to go off, Maquina afterwards sold him to the Wickinninish. I was informed by the princess Yuqua, that he was quite a
small boy, who cried a great deal, being put to
hard labour beyond his strength by the natives, in
cutting wood and bringing water, and that when
he heard of the murder of our crew, it had such
an effect on him that he fell sick and died shortly
after. On learning the melancholy fate of this unfortunate lad, it again awakened in my bosom those
feelings that I had experienced at the shocking
death of my poor comrades.
The king finding that I was desirous of learning
their language, was much delighted, and took great
pleksure in conversing with me. On one of these
occasions, he explained to me his reasons for cutting off our ship, saying that he bore no ill will to
my countrymen, but that he had been several times
treated!*very ill by them. The first injury of
which he had cause to complain, was done him by
a Captain Tawnington, who commanded a schQpn-
er which passed a winter at Friendly Cove, where
he was well treated by the inhabitants. This man
taking advantage of Maquina's absence, who had
gone to the Wickinninish to procure a wife, armed
himself and crew, and entered the house where
thei*e were none but women, whom he threw into
the greatest consternation, and searching the
chests, took away all th$ skins, of which Maquina had no less*than forty of the best: and that
about the same time, four of their chiefs were barbarously killed by a Captain Martinez, a Spaniard.
• . 92
jewitt's narrative.
That soon after Caj>tain Hanna, of the Sea-Otter,
in conseqnence of one of the natives having stolen
a chisel from the carpenter, fired upon their canoes which were along side, and killed upwards-
of twenty of the natives, of whom several were
Tyees or chiefs, arid that he himself being on
board the vessel, in order to escape was obliged
to leap from the quarter deck, and swim for a long
way under water. v4
J?  s g&r=r
The Sea Otter firing upon the Natives.
These injuries had excited in the breast of Maquina, an ardent desire of revenge, the strongest
passion of the savage heart, and though many
years had elapsed since their commission, still
they were not forgotten, and the want of a favourable opportunity alone prevented him from sooner
avenging them. Unfortunately for us, the long
wished for opportunity at length presented itself
in our ship, which Maquina finding not guarded
with the usual vigilance of the North West Traders, and feeling his desire of revenge rekindled by
the insult offered by Capt. Salter, formed a plan for JEWITT'S NARRATIVE.
attacking, and on his return,.called a council of
his chiefs, and communicated it to them, acquainting them with the manner in which he had been
treated. No less desirous of avenging this affront
offered their king, than the former injuries, they
readily agreed to his proposal, which was to go on
board without arms as usual, but under different
pretexts, in greater numbers,.and wrait his signal
for the moment of attacking their unsuspeoting
victims. The execution of this scheme, as the
reader knows, was unhappily too successfut^^
And here I cannot but indulge a reflection that has^
frequently occurred to me on the manner in which
our people behave towards the natives. For
though they are a thievish race, yet I have no
doubt that many of the melancholy disasters have
principally arisen from the imprudent conduct of"
some of the captains and crews of the ships employed in this trade, in exasperating them by insulting, plundering, and even killing them on slight
grounds. This, as nothing is more sacred with a savage than the principle of revenge, and no people are
so impatient under insult, induces them to wreak
their vengeance upon the first vessel or boat's crew
.that offers, making the innocent too frequently suffer
for the wrongs of the guilty, as few of them know
to discriminate between persons.of the same general
appearance, more especially when speaking the
same language. And to this cause do I believe, must
principally be ascribed the sanguinary disposition
with which these people are reproached, as Ma-*
quina repeatedlynold me that it was not his wish to
hurt a white man, and that he never should iMp done
it, though ever so'much in his power, had they
not injured hifc. And were the commanders of
oUr ships to treat the savages with rather more*
l fill'
m H^
civility than they sometimes do, I am inclined to
think they would find their account in*it; not that
I should recommend to them a confidence in the
good faith and friendly professions of these people,
so as in any degree to remit their vigilance, but on
the contrary, to be strictly on their guard, and
suffer but a very few of them to come on board
the ship, and admit not many of their canoes along
side at a time; a precaution that would have been
the means of preventing some of the unfortunate
events that have occurred, and if attended to,
fbiay in future, preserve many a valuable life*
Such a regulation too, from what I know of their
disposition and wants, would produce no seri©us
difficulty in trading with the savages, and they
would soon become perfectly reconciled to it.
Among the provisions which the Indians procure at Tashees, I must not omit mentioning a
fruit that is very important, as forming a great article of their food. This is what is called by them
the Yama, a species of berry that grows in bunches like currants, upon a bush from two to three
feet high, with a large, round and smodfe leaf.
This berry is black, and about the size of a pistol
shot, but of rather an oblong shape, and open at
the top like the blue whortleberry. The taste is
sweet but a little acrid, and when first gathered, if
eaten in any great quantity, especially without oil, is
apt to produce cholics. To procure it, large
companies of women go out on the mountains, accompanied by armed men, to protect them against
wild beasts, where they frequently remain for several days,* kindling a fire at night, and sheltering
themselves under sheds constructed of boughsi.
At these parties, they collect great quantities. I
have known Maquina's queen and her women re-
1 HH jewitt's narrative.
turn loaded, bringing with them upwards of twelve
bushels. | In order to preserve it, it is pressed in
the bunches between two planks, and dried and
put away in baskets for use- It is always eaten
with oil.
Of berries of various kinds, such as strawberries, rasp-berries, black-berries, &c. there are
great quantities in the country, of which the natives
are very fond, gathering them in their seasons, and
eating them with oil, but the yama is the only one
that they preserve.
Fish is, however, their great article of food, as
almost all the others, excepting the yama, may be
considered as accidental.—They nevertheless are
far from disrelishing meat, for instance, venison and
bear's flesh. With regard to the latter, they have
a most singular custom, which is, that any one
who eats of it is obliged to abstain from eating any
kind of fresh fish whatever, for the term of two
months, as they have a superstitious belief, that
should any of their people after tasting bear's
flesh, eat of fresh salmon, cod, &c. the fish, though
at ever so great a distance off, would come to the
knowledge of it, and be so much offended thereat,'
as not to allow themselves to be taken by any of the
inhabitants. This I had an opportunity of observing while at Tashees, a bear Having been killed
early in December, of which not more !han ten
of the natives would eat, „being prevented by the
prohibition annexed to it, which also was the reason of my comrade and myself not tasting it, on
being told by Maquinagthe consequence.
As there is something quit^urious in their management of this animal, when* they have killed one,
I shall give a description of i™ After well cleansing the bear from the dirt dnd blood, with which-
. 96
jewitt's narrative.
it is generally "covered when killed, it is brought
in and seated opposite the king in an Upright posture, with a chief's bonnet, wrought in figures on
its bead, and its fur powdered over with the white
down. A tray of provision is then set before it,
and it is invited by words and gestuYes to eat.
This mock ceremony over, the reason of which I
could never learn, the animal is taken and skinned, and the flesh anH entrails boiled up into a
soup, no part, but the paunch being rejected.
Thompson and one of the Indianis shooting a Bear.
This dressing the bear as they call it, is an occasion of great rejoicing throughout the village,
all the inhabitants being invited to a great feast at
the king's house, though but few of them, in consequence of the penalty, will venture to eat of the
flesh, but generally content thertiselves with their
favourite dish of herring spawn and water. The
feast on this occasion was closed by a dance from
'Sat-sat-sak-sis, in the manner I have already described, in the course of which he repeatedly shifted
his mask for another of a different form..
A few days after a second bear was taken  like
the former, by means of a trap. This I had the
curiosity to go and see at the place Where it was
caught, which was in the following manner. On
the edge of a small stream of water in-the mountains, which the salmon ascend, and near the
spot where the bear is accustomed to watch for
them, which is known by its track, a trap ox box
about the heighth of a man's head is built of posts
and planks with a flat top,'on which are laid a
number of large stones or rocks. The top and
sides are then carefully covered with turf, so as to
resemble a little mound, and wholly to exclude the
light, a narrow entrance of the height of the building only being left, just Sufficient to admit the
head and shoulders of the beast. On the inside,
to a large plank that covers the top, is suspended
by a strong cord a salmon, the plank being left
loose so that a forcible pull will bring it down.
On coming to its usual haunt, the bear enters the
trap, and in endeavouring to pull away the fish,
brings down the whole covering with its load of
stones upon its head, and is almost always crushed
to death on the spot, or so wounded as to be unable to escape. They are always careful to examine these traps every day, in order if a bear be
caught, to bring it away, and cook it immediately,
for it is not a little singular, that these people will
eat no kind of meat that is in the least tainted, or
not perfectly fresh, while, on the contrary, it is
hardly possible for fish to be in too putrid a state
for them, and I have frequently known them when
a whale has been driven ashore, bring pieces of it
home with them in a state of offensiveness insupportable to any thing but a^crow, and devour it
with high relish, considering it as preferable to that
which is fresh.    G'
9 W
m 98
On the morning of the 13th of December, com*
menced what appeared to us a most singular farce.
Apparently without any previous notice, Maquina
discharged a pistol close to his son's ear, who immediately fell down as if killed, upon which all the
women of the house set up a most lamentable cry,
tearing handfulls of hair from their heads, and exclaiming that the prince was dead, at the same time
a great number of the inhabitants/rushed into the
house armed with their daggers, muskets, &c. enquiring the cause of their outcry; these were immediately followed by two others dressed in wolf
skins, with masks over their faces representing the
head of that animal; the latter came in on their
hands and feet in the manner of a beast, and taking
up the prince carried him off-upon their backs,
retiring in the same manner they entered. We
saw nothing more of the ceremony, as Maquina
came to us, and giving us a quantity of dried provision, ordered us to quit the house &nd not return
to the village before the expiration of seven days,
for that if we appeared within that period, he should
kill us. Jf
At any other season of the year such an order
would by us have been considered as an indulgence, in enabling us to pass our time in whatever
way we wished, and even now, furnished as we
were, with sufficient provision for that term, it
was not very unpleasant to us, more particularly
Thompson, who was always desirous to keep as
much as possible out of the society and sight of
the natives, whom he detested. Taking with us
our provisions, a bundle of clothes, and our axes,
we obeyed the diredlions of Maquina, and withdrew into the woods, where we built ourselves a
cabin to shelter us, with the branches of trees, and jewitt's NARRATIVE.
keeping up a good fire, secured ourselves pretty
well from the cold.I Here we passed the prescribed period of our exile, with more content than
much of the time while with them, employing the
day in reading and praying for our release, or in
rambling around and exploring the country, the
soil of which we found to be very good, and the
face of it, beautifully diversified with hills and valleys, refreshed with the finest streams of water,
and at night enjoyed comfortable repose upon a
bed of soft leaves, with our garments spread over
us to protect us from the cold. -'jjjfc
A%the end of seven days we returned arid found
several of the poeple of A-i-tiz-zart with their
king-or chief at Tashees, who had been invited
by Maquina to attend the close of this performance,
which I now learn was a celebration, held by them
annually, in honour of their God, whom they call
Quahootze, to return him their thanks for his past,
ahd implore his future favours. It terminated on
the 21st, the day after our return, with a most extraordinary exhibition; Three men, each of
whom had two bayonets run through his sides,
between the ribs, apparently regardless of the pain,
traversed the room, backwards and forwards, singing war songs,' and exulting in this display of
firmness.'.., ' M     ''■/..' '«
On the arrival of the 25th, we could not but
call to mind, that this being Christmas, was in our
country a day of the greatest festivity, when our
fellow countrymen assembled in their churches,
were celebrating the goodness of God, and the
praises of the Saviour. What a reverse did our
situation offer—captives in a lavage land, and slaves
to a set of ignorant beings unacquainted with religion
or humanity, hardly were we permitted to offer up
>s&y M
our devotions by ourselves in the woods, while we
felt even grateful for this privilege. Thither with the
king's permission, we withdrew, and after reading
the service appointed for the day, sung the hymn of
the Nativity, fervently praying that heaven in its
goodness, would permit us to celebrate the next
festival of this kind in some Christian land. On our
return, in order to conform as much as was in our
power to the custom of our country, we were desirous of having a better supper than usual. With
this view we bought from one of the natives,
some dried clams and oil, and a root called Klet-
sup} which we cooked by steaming, and found it
very palatable. This root consists of many fibres,
of about six inches long, and of the size of a crow
quill. It is sweet, of an agreeable taste, not unlike the Quanoose, and it is "teaten with oil. The
plant that produces it I have never seen. JE      .'Si
On the 31st, all the tribe quitted Tashees for
Cooptee, whither they,go to pass the remainder
of the winter, and complete their fishing, taking
off every thing with them in the same manner as at
Nootka. We arrived in a few hours at Cooptee,
which is about fifteen miles, and immediately set
about covering the houses, which was soon completed, f* v V?%,*|
This place, which is their great herring and
sprat fishery, stands just within the mouth of the
river, on the same side with Tashees, in a very
narrow valley at the foot of a high mountaiti.
Though nearly as secure as Tashees from the winter storms, it is by no means so pleasantly situated, though to us it was a much more agreeable
residence, as it brought-us nearer Nootka, where we
were impatient to return, in hopes of finding some
vessel there, or hearing of the arrival of one near. JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
The fi^st snow tfiat fell this season, was the day
'lifter our arrival, on New-Years ; a day that like
Christmas, brought with it, painful reccollections,
but at the same time led us to indulge the hope of
a more fortunate year than the last.
Early on the morning of the 7th of January,
Maquina took me with him in his canoe on a visit
to Upquesta, chief of the A-i-tiz-zarts, who had
invited him to attend an exhibition at his village,
similar to the one with which he had been entertained at Tashees. This place is between twenty and thirty miles distant up the sound, and stands
on%he banks of a small river about the size of that
of Cibptee, just within its entrance, in a valley of
much greater extent than that of Tashees ; it consists of fourteen or fifteen houses, built and disposed in the manner of those at Nootka. The
tribe, which is considered as tributary to Maquina, amounts to about three hundred warriors, and
the inhabitants, both men and women, are among
the best looking of any people On the coast.
On our arrival we were received at the shore by
the inhabitants, a few of whom were armed with
muskets, which they fired, with loud shouts and
exclamations of Wocash^ wocash.
.fWe were welcomed by the chiefs messenger,
or master of ceremonies, dressed in his best garments, with his hair powdered with white down,
and holding in his hand the cheetoolth, the badge
of his office. This man preceded us to the chief's
house, where he introduced and pointed out to us
our respective seats.^ On entering, the visitors
took off their hats, which they always wear on
similar occasions, and Maquina his outer robes, of
which he has several on whenever he pays a visit,
and seated himself near the chief.    As I was dress-
ed in European clothes I became quite an object
of curiosity to these people, very few of whom
had ever seen a white man. Thay crowded around
me in pumbers, taking hold of my clothes, examining my face, hands and feet, and even^ppen-
ing my mouth to see if I had a tongue, for notwithstanding I had by this time become well acquainted with their language, I. preserved the
strictest silence, Maquina on our first landing having enjoined me not to speak, until he should direct. Having undergone this examination fon some
time, Maquina at length made a sign to me to speak
to them. On hearing me address them in their
own language, they were greatly astonished arid
delighted, and told Maquina that they now perceived that I was a man like themselves, except
that I was white and looked like a seal, alluding to
my blue jacket and trowsers, which they wanted
to persuade me to take off, as they dicj not lil^
their appearance.^ Maquina in the mean time gave
an account to the chief, of the scheme he had
formed for surprising our ship, and the manner in
which he and his people had carried it into execution, with such particular and horrid details of that
transaction as chilled the blood in my veins. Trays
of boiled herring spawn and train oil were soon after brought in and placed before us, neither the
chief or any of his people eating at the same time,
it being contrary to the ideas of hospitality entertained by these nations, to eat any part of the food
that is' provided for strangers, always waiting
until their visitors have finished, before they have
their own brought in.
The following day closed their festival with an
exhibition of a similar kind, to that/which had been
given at Tashees, but still more cruel, the different JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
tribes appeargag on these occasions to endeavour to
surpass each other, in their proofs of fortitude and
endurance of pain. In the morning twenty men
entered the chief's house, with each an arrow run
through the flesh of his sides, and either arm, with
a cord fastened to the end, which as the performers
advanced, singing and boasting, was forcibly drawn
back by a person having hold of it. , After this
performance was closed we returned to Cooptee,
which we reached at midnight, our men keeping
time with thfir songs to the stroke of their paddles.
The natives now began to take the herring and
sprat in immense quantities with some salmon,
and there was nothing but feastpg from morning
till night. The following is the method they employ to t^ke the herring. A stick of about seven
feet long, two inches broad, and half an inch thick,
is formed from some hard wood, one side of which
is set with sharp teeth, made from whale bone, at
about half an inch apart. Provided with this instrument, the fisherman seats himself in the prow
of a canoe, which is paddled by another, and whenever he comes to a shoal of herring, which cover
the water in great quantities, he strikes it with
both hands upon them, and at the same moment
turning it up, brings it over the side of the canoe,
into which he lets those that sfre taken drop. It is
astonishing to see how many are caught by those
who are dexterous at this kind of fishing, as they
seldom fail when the shoak are numerous, of tal->
ing as many as ten or twelve at a stroke, and in a
very short time will fill a canqe with them. | Sprats
are likewise caught in a similar manner.
. About the l^eginning of February, Maquina gave a
great feast, at which were present not only all the
,   i
1 4\
jewitt's narrative.
inhabitants, but one hundred persons from A-i-
fe-zart, and a number from Wickinninish, who
had been invited to attend it. It is customary with
them to give an annual entertainment of this kind,
and it is astonishing to see what a quantity of provision is expended, or rather wasted on such an
occasion, when they always eat to the greatest excess. It was at this feast that I saw upwards of
a hundred salmon cooked in one tub. The whole
residence at Cooptee presents an almost uninterrupted succession of feasting and gbrmondizing,
and it would seem as if the principal object of these
people was to consume their whole stock of provision before leaving it, trusting* entirely to their
success in fishing and whaling, for a supply at
NootSca.       %
; On the 25th of February, we quitted Cooptee,
and returned to Nootka. With much joy did
Thompson and myself again find ourselves in a place,
#here notwithstanding the melancholy recollections
which it excited, we hoped before long to see some
vessel arrive to our relief; and for this we became
the more solicitous, as of late we had become much
more apprehensive of our safety in consequence of
information brought Maqtihia a few days before
we left Cooptee, by some of the Cayuqtiets, that
there were twenty ships at the northward preparing tocome against him, with an intention of destroying him and his whole tribe, for cutting off the
Boston. This story which was wholly without
foundation, and discovered afterwards to have been
invented by these people, for the purpose of disquieting him, threw him into great alarm, and notwithstanding all I could say to convince him t&at it
was an unfounded report, so great was his jealousy
of us, especially after it had been confirmed to JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
him by some others of the same nation, that he
treated us with much harshness, and kept a very
suspicious eye upon us. Nothing indeed could
be more unpleasant than bur present situation,
when I reflected that our lives were altogether dependent on the will of a savage, on whose caprice
and suspicions  no  rational calculation could be
made. ■■-'%'■'        . ,..'■*
Not long after our return, a son of Maquina's
sister, a boy about eleven years old, who had been
for some time declining, died. Immediately on
his death, *whic$a was about midnight, all the men
and women in the house, set up loud cries and
shrieks^ which awakening Thompson and myself,
so disturi^ed us that we left the house. This
lamentation was kept up during the remainder of
the night. In the morning, a great fire was kindled, in which Maquina burned in honour of the deceased, ten fathoms of cloth, and buried with him
ten fathojns more, eig|*t of I-whaw, four prime
sea ottar skins, and two small tfunks, conjoining our
unfortunate cap trip's clothes and watch. This
boy was considered as a Tyee or chief, being the
Only son of ♦ Tootoosch, one of their principal
chiefs, who had married MaqWH#'s sister, whence
arose this ceremony on his interpient; it being an
established custom with these people, tjp&t whenever a chief dies, his most valuable property is
burned or buried with him; it is, however, wholly
confined to the chiefs, and appears to be a mark
of honour appropriate to them. In this instance
Maquina furnished |he articles, in order that his
nephew might have the proper honours rendered
him. § Tootoosch his father was esteemed $he first
warrior of the tribe, and was one who had been
particularly wtive in the destruction of our ship,
! it
I   ■■
having killed two of our poor comrades, who were
ashore, whose names were Hall and Wood.
About the time of our removal to Tashees, while
in the enjoyment of the highest health, he was
suddenly seized with a fit of delirium, in which
he fancied that he saw the ghosts of those two men
constantly standing by him, and threatening Mm,
so that he would take no food^, except what was
forced into hi£ mouth. A short time before this,
he had lost a daughter of about fifteen years of
age, which afflicted him greatly, and whether his
insanity, a disorder very uncommon amongst these
savages, no instance of the kind having occurred
within the memory of the oldest man amongst
them, proceeded from this cause, or that it was
the special interposition of an all merciful God in
our favour, who by this means thought proper to
induce these barbarians still farther to respect our
lives, or that for hidden purposes; the Supreme
Disposer of events, sometimes permits the spirits
of the dead to revisit the world, and haunt the
murderer I know not, but his mind from this period
until his death, which took place but a fewr weeks
after that of his son was incessantly Occupied with
the images of the men whom he had killed. This
circumstance made riiuch impression upon the tribe,
particularly the chiefs, whose uniform opposition
to putting us to death, at the various councils that
were held on our account, I could not but in part
attribute to this cause, and Maquina used frequently in speaking of Tootoosch's sickness, to express
much satisfaction tMt his hands had not been
stained with the blood of any of our men. When
Maquina was first informed by his sister, of the
strange conduct of her husband, he immediately
went to his house, taking us with him; suspecting jewitt's narrative.
that his disease had been caused by us, and that the
ghosts of our countrymen had been called thither by
us, to torment him. We found him raving about
Hall and Wood, saying that they were peshak,
that is bad. Maquina then placed some provision
before him to seq if he would eat. On perceiving it, he put forth his hand to take some, but instantly withdrew it with signs of horror, saying
that Hall and Wood were there, and would not
let him eat. Maquina then pointing to us, asked
if it was not John and Thompson who troubled
him. Wik, he replied, that is, no, John klush-
ish—Thompson klushish—John and Thompson
are both good; then turning to me, and patting me
on the shoulder, he made signs to me to eat. I
tried to persuade him that Hall and Wood were
not there, and that none were near him but ourselves: he said, I know very well you do not see
them, but I do. At first Maquina endeavoured to
cpnvince him that he saw nothing, and to laugh
him out of his belief, but finding that all was to no
purpose, he at length became serious, and asked
me if I ljad ever peen any one affected in this
manner, and what was the matter with him. I
gave him to understand, pointing to his head, that
his brain was injured, and that he did not see
things as formerly. Being. convinced by Too-
toosch's conduct, that we had no agency in his
indisposition, on our return home, Maquina asked
me what was done in my country in similar cases.
I told him that such' persons were closely confined, and sometimes tied up and whipped, in order
to make them better. After pondering for some
time, he .said that he should be glad to do any
thing to relieve him, and that he should be whipped, and immediately gave o#ers to some of his
i 108
men, to go to T^otoosch's house, bind him, and
bring him to his, in order' to undergo the operation. Thompson was the person selected to
administer this remedy, which he undertook very
readily, and for that purpose provided himself with
a good number of spruce braijches, with which he
whipped him most severely, laying it on with the
best wijl imaginably, while Tootoosch displayed
the greatest rage, kicking, spitting, and attempting
to bite all who came near him. This was too
much for Maquina, who, at length, unable to endure it longer; ordered Thompson to desist, and
Tootoosch to be carried back, saying that if there
was no other way of curing him but by whipping,
he must remain mad.
The application of the whip produced no beneficial effect on Tootoosch, for he afterwards became still more deranged; in his fits of fury sometimes seizing a club, and beating his slaves in a
most dreadful mariner, and striking andfepitting at
all who came near hra), till at length his wife no
longer daring to remain in the house with him,
came with her son to Maquina's. r        ^
The whaling season now commenced, and Ma-
quiaa was out almost every day in his canoe in
pursuit of them, but for a considerable time, with
no success, one day breaking the staff of his harpoon, another, after having been a long time fast
to a whale, the weapon drawing, owing to the
breaking of the shell which formed its point, with
several such like accidents, arising from the imperfection of the instrument. At these times he
always returned very morose and out of temper,
upbraiding his men with having violated their obligation to continence preparatory to whaling. In
this state of ill humeur he would give us very lit- ifl
jewitt's narrative.
tie to eat, which added to the* women not cooking when the men are away, reduced us to very
low fare. p'- ".$|      -^/W:-\'
Eff' In consequence of the repeated occurrence of
similar accidents, I proposed to Maquina to inake
him a harpoon or foreganger of steel, which would-
be less liable to fail hink 1 The idea pleased him,
and in a short time I completed one for him, with
which he was much delighted, and the very next
day weak out to make trial of it.    He succeeded
with it in taking a whale. § Great was  the joy
throughout the village as soon as it was known
that the king had secured , the whale, by notice
from a person stationed at the/head-land in the offing. % All the canoes were immediately launched,
and, furnished with harpoons and seal skin floats,
hastened to assist in buoying it up and in towing it
in.    The bringing in of this fish exhibited a scene
of universal festivity,|| As soon as the canoes appeared at the mouth'of the cove, those on board
of them singing a song of triumph to a slow air, to
which they kept time with their paddles, all who
were on shore, men, women, and children, mounted the roofs of their houses, to congratulate the
king on his success, drumming most furiously on
the planks, and exclaiming Wocash—wocash Tyee*
The whale on being drawn on shore, was immediately cut up, and a great feast of j the blubber
given at Maquiia's house, to which all the village
were invited, who indemnified themselves for their
lent, by eating as usual to excess.    I was highly praised for the goodness'of my harpoon, and a
quantity of blubber given me, which I was permit-
ed to cook as I pleased, this I-lfeiled in salt water
with  some young nettles  and  other greens for
vm SH 110
jewitt's narrative
t§ - Thompson -and myself, and in this way we found
||f it tolerable food.   Iff   -M j : -W \#    W\ '.fj|
|f     Their method of procuring the pil, is to skim
it from the water in which the blubber is boiled,
and when cool, put It up into whale bladders for
use, and of these I have seen them so la*rge as,
when filled, would require no less than five or six
j§|men to carry.    Several of the chiefs, among whom
were Maquiffa's brothers, who after the king has
caught the first whale, are privileged to take them
also, were very desirous, on discovering the superiority of my harpoon, that I should'make some
for them, but this Maquina would not permit, reserving for himself this  improved weapon..   He
however gave me directions to make   a number
.   more for himself, which I executed, and also made
him several lances, with  which he  wras  greatly
pleased. ' ||". '-■"" ...   V-ff|* '- H'-'   1
As these people have some very singular obser-
i vances preparatory tb whaling, an account of them
will, I presume^ not prove uninteresting, especially
as it may serve to give a better idea of their manners. A short time before leaving Tashees, the
king makes a point of passing a day alone on'the.
mountain, whither he goes very privately early in
the morning, and does not return till late in the
evening. This is done, as I afterwards learned,
for the purpose of singing and praying to his God
for success in whaling the ensuh g season. At
Cooptee the same ceremony is performed, and at
Nootka after the return thither, with still greater
solemnity, as for the next two days he appears
very thoughtful and gloomy, scarcely speaking to
any one, and observes a most rigid fast. On these
occasions, he has always a broad red fillet made JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
of bark, bound around his head, in token of humiliation, with a large branch <af green spruce on the
top, and his great rattle in his hand. In addition
to this, for a week before commencing their whal-
||ing, both himself and the crew of his fcanoe ob-
'■ serve a fast, eating but very little, and going into
the water several times in the course-of each day
||to bathe, singing and rubbing their bodies, limbs
and faces with shells and bushes, so that on their
return I have seen them look as though they had
been severely torn with briers. They are likewise obliged to abstain from any commer.ce with
their women for the like period, the latter restric-
vtion being considered as indispensable to their success, fe iy
Early in June Tootoosch, the crazy chief, died.
On being acquainted with1 his death the whole vil-
: lage, men, women, and children set up a loud
cry, with every-.testimony of the greatest grief,
which they continued for more than three hours.
As soon as he was dead, the body, according to
their custom, was laid out on a plank, having the
head bound round with a red bark fillet, which is
with them an emblem of mourning; and sorrow.
After# laying some time in this manner, he was
wrapped in an otter skin robe, and three fathoms
of I-whaw being put about his neck, he was placed
in a large .coffin or box about three feet deep,
which was ornamented on the outside with two
rows'of the small white shells. In this, the most
valuable articles of his property were placed with
him, among which were no less than twenty-four
prime sea-otter skins. At night, which is their
time for interring the dead, the coffin was borne
by eight men with two poles, thrust through ropes
passed around it, to tho^place of burialy accom-
i ass
panied by his wife and family, with their hair cut
short,* in token of grief, all the inhabitants joining
the procession. The place of burial was a large
cavern on the side of a hill at a little distance from
the village, in which, after depositing the coffin
carefully, all the attendants repaired to Maquink's
house, where a number of articles belonging to the
deceased,, consisting, of blankets, pieces of\ cloth,
&c. were burned by a person appointed by Ma-1
quina for that purpose, dressed and painted in the
highest style, with his head covered with white
down, who, as he put in the several pieces, one by
one, poured upon them a quantity of oil to increase
the flame, in the intervals between, making af
speech and playing off a variety of buffoon tricks,
and the whole closed with a feast and dance from
Sat-sat-sak-sis, the king's son. "S
The man who performed the ceremony of bufn-
ing on this occasion, was a very singular character, named Kinneclimmets. He was held in high
estimation by the king, though Only of the common class, probably from his talent for mimicry
apd buffoonry, and might be considered as a kind
of king's jester, or rather as combining in his pier-
son the character of a buffoon with*thai of master
of ceremonies, and public orator to his majesty,
as he was the one who at, feasts always regulated
the place of the guests,' delivered speeches on receiving or returning visits,fbesides amusing the
company at all their entertainments, with a variety
of monkey pranks and antic gestures, which appeared to these savages the height, of wit and humour, but would be considered as extremely low
by the least polished people. Almost all tl^ kings
or head chiefs of the principal tribes, were aceom-,
panied by a similar chai^cter, -who appeared to be. JEWITT S NARRATIVE
attached to their dignity, and are called in their*
language,  Climmer-habbee.
This man, Kinneclimmets; Avas particularly
odiou§ to Thompson, who would never join in the
laugh at his tricks, but when he began, .would almost always quit the hofrse with a very surly look,
and an exclamation of, cursed* fool! which Maquina, who thought nothing could equal the cleverness
of his Climmer-habbee. used to remark with much
dissatisfaction, asking me why" Thompson never
.laughed, observing that I must have had a very
good tempered woman indeed for my mother, as
my father wTas so very iil-nafured a man. Among
those performances that gained him the greatest
applausd; was his talent of eating to excess, for I
have known him devour at one meal, no less than
seventy-five large herring, and at another time
when a great feast was given by Maquina, he undertook, after drinking three pints of oil by way
of wnet, to eat four^dried salmon, and five quarts
of spawn, mixed up with a gallon of train oil, and
actually succeeded in swallowing the greater part
of this mess, until his stomach became so overloaded, as to discharge  its contents  in the  dish.
if One of his exhibitions, however, had nearly cost
him his life, this was on occasion of Kla-quak-
ee-na, one of the chiefs, having bought him a new
wife, in celebration of which he ran three times
;lphrough a large'fire, arid burned himself in such a
Inanner, - that he was not able to stir for more than
* four  weeks.    These feats of savage skill   were
!|[.much praised by Maquina, who never failed to
mmake him a present, of cloth, muskets, &c. on
siSch occasions.
':'M The death of Tootoosch increased still more
the disquietude which his delirium had   excited
I! 114
among the savages, and all those chiefs who had
killed our men became much alarmed, lest they
should be seized with the same disorder and die
like him; more'particularly, as I had told Maquina,
that I believed his insanity was a punishment inflicted on him t>y Quahootze, for his truelty in
murdering two innocent men, who had never injured hjm^i  I  .t|g§.' ^ :#■' j     M'. 'M-  'JPlL-'' ■
Our situation had now become jinpleasant-in the
extreme. The summer was so far advanced, that
we nearly despaired of a ship arriving to our relief,
and with that expectation, almost relinquished the
hope of ever having it in our power to quit this
savage land. We were treated too with less indulgence than before, both Thompson and myself
being obliged, in addition to our other employments, to perform the laborious task of cutting and
collecting, fuel,-which we had to bring on our
shoulders from nearly threef miles distant, as it
consisted wholly of dry trees, all of which near
the village, had been consumed. To add to this,
we suffered much abuse from the common people,
who,- when Maquina or some of the chiefs were
not present, would insult us, calling us wretched
slaves, asking us where was our. Tyee or captain,
making gestures signifying that his head had been
cut off, arid that they would do* the like to us;
though they generally took good care at such times
to keep well out of Thompson's reach, as they
had more than once experienced to their cost the
strength of This fist. This conduct was not only
provoking and grating to our feeling* in the highest
degree, but it convinced us of the. ill disposition
of these savages towards us, and rendered us fearful lest they might at some time or other persuade
or force Maquina and the chiefs, to put us to death. JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
We were also   often brought to great distress
for the want of provision, so far as to be reduced
to collect a scanty supply of muscles and limpets
from the rocks, and sometimes even compelled to
part with some of our most necessary articles of
clothing, A order to purchase food for our subsistence.    This wTas, however, principally owing
to the inhabitants themselves experiencing a great
scarcity of provisions this season,  there having
been,   in  the first place,  but  ven   few  salmon
caught  at Friendly   Cove, a most  unusual  circumstance, as they generally abound there in the
spring, which, was by the natives attributed to their
having been driven away by the blood of our men,
who had been thrown into the sea, which with
true savage inconsistency, excited their murmers
against Maquina, who had  proposed cutting off
our ship.    Relying on this supply, they had in
the most inconsiderate manner squandered away
their   winter   stock   of provisions, so that in a
few days after their return, it was entirely Expended.    Nor were the king and chiefs much more
fortunate in their whaling, even after I had furnished Maquina with the improved weapon for that
purpose; but four whales having been taken during
theseason, which closes the last of May, including
one that had been struck by Maquina and escaped,
and was afterwards driven on shore about six miles
from  Nootka,   in almost   a  state  of   putridity.
These afforded but a short supply, to a population, including all ages and sexes, of no less than
fifteen hundred persons, and of a character so very
improvident, that after feasting most gluttonously
whenever a whale was caught, they were several
times for a week together, reduced to the necessity of eating but once, a day,  and of collecting jewitt's NARRATIVE.
cockles and muscles from the rocks for their food.
And even after the cod and halibut fishing commenced in June, in which they met with toletable
success, such was. the- savage caprice of Maquina
that he would often give us but little to eat, finally \
ordering us to buy a canoe and fishing implements,
and go out ourselves and fish, or we should have
nothing. To do this, wre were compelled to part
with our great coats, which were not only important to us as garments, but of which we made our
beds, spreading them under us when we slept.
From our want of skill, however, in this new employ, we met with no success, on discovering
which, Maquina ordered us to remain at home.
Another thing, which to me in particular, proved
,an almost constant source of vexation and disgust,
and which living among them had not in! the least
reconciled me to, was their extreme filthiness, not
only in eating fish, especially the whale, when an a
state  of offensive putridity,   but while  at their
meals of making a practice of taking the vermill:
from their heads or clothes, and eating therd, by
turns    thrusting^ their  fingers    into    their Hhair,
and  into the dish, and spreading their garments
over the tubs in which the provision was cooking, in order to set in motion tlreir inhabitants.
Fortunately for Thompson, he regarded this much
less than myself, and when I-used to point out to
him any instances of their filthiness in this respect,
he would laugh and reply, Never mind John, the
more good things the better.    I must however do
Maquina the justice to state, that he \Vas much
neater both in his person and eating than We#e the
others, as was likewise his queen, owing no doubt
to his intercouse with foreigners, which had given
him ideas of cleanliness, for I never saw either of JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
them eat any of these animals, but on the contrary
they appeared not much to relish this taste in
others. Their garments, also, were much cleaner, Maquina having been accustomed to give his
away when they became soiled,* till after he discovered that Thompson and myself kept ours cleam
by washing them, when he used to make Thompson do the same for him.
M Yet amidst this state of endurance and disappointment, iri hearing repeatedly of the arrival of
ships at the north and south, most of which proved
to be idle reports, while expectation was almost
Wearied out in looking for them, we did not wholly
klespond, relying on the mercy of the Supreme
Being., to offer up to whom our devotions on the
days appointed for his worship, was our chief consolation and support, though we were sometimes \
obliged by our task-masters to infringe upon the
Sabbath, which was to me a source of much fe-
' gret.  .   if ,#• -'       0--   <-\,   ' -
We were nevertheless, treated at times, with
much kindness by Maquina, who would give us a
plenty-of the best that he had to eat,' and occasionally, some small present of cloth for a garment,
promising me, that if any ship should arrive within
a hundred miles of Nootka, he would send a canoe
wTith a letter from me to the captain, so that he
might comb to our release. These flattering promises and marks of attention were however, at those
times, when he thought himself in personal danger
from a mutinous spirit, which the scarcity of provision had excited among the natives, who/like
true savages, imputed ill their public calamities,
of whatever kind,* to the misconduct of their chief,
or when he was apprehensive of an attack from
some of the other tribes who were irritated withhim
1 j     p
for putting off the Boston, as it had prevented ships
from coming to trade with them, and who were"Jj
constantly alarming him with idle stories of vessels ||
that were preparing to come against him, and exterminate both him and his people the Cayuquets.
At such times, he made us keep guard over him
both night and 'day, armed with cutlasses and pistols, being apparently afraid to trust any of his own -
men.    At one time, it was a general revolt of his §
people that he apprehended—then  three of his||
principal chiefs, among whom was his elder broth- .
er, had conspired to take away his life, arid at||
length he fancied that a small party, of Klaooquates,   \
between whom and the Nootkians,.little friendship^
subsisted, had come to Nootka, under a pretence of
trade, for the sole purpose of murdering him and his
family, telling us, probably to sharpen our vigilance, that their intention was to kill us-likewise;
and so strongly were his fears excited on tMs occasion, that he not only ordered us to keep near
him armed by day, whenever he went out, and to
patrole at night before his house while they remained, but to contiriue the same guard for three daysfl
after they were gone, and to fire at one and at; four
in the mornings one of the great guns, to let them
know, if, as he suspected, they were lurking in the
neighbourhood, that he was on his guard.    While
he was thus favourably disposed towards us, I took
an opportunity to inform him of the ill treatment
that we frequently received from-his people, arid
the insults that were offered us, by some of the
stranger tribes in calling us white slaves, and loading us with other opprobrious terms. § He  was
much displeased, and s.aid that his subjects should
not be allqped to treat us ill, and that if any of the
grangers did it, he Wished us to punish the offend- JEWITT's NARRATIVE
erf with death, *at the same time directing us for
our security, to go constantly armed. This permission was soon improved by Thompson to the
best advantage ;* for a few days after, having- gone to
the pond to wash some of our clothes, and blanket
for Maquina, several Wickinninish who were then
at Nootka, came thither, and seeing him washing
the clothes, and the blanket spread upon the grass
to dry, they began according to custom to insult
him, and one of them bolder than the others,
walked over the blanket. Thompson was highly
incensed, and threatened the Indian with death if
he repeated the offence, but he, in contempt of the
threat, trampled upon the blanket, when dra\ying
his cutlass, without farther ceremony, Thompson
cut off his head, on seeing which the others ran
Thompson killing the Indian.
off at full speed; Thompson then gathering up the
clothes and blanket on which were the marks of the
Indian's dirty feet, and taking with him the head,,
returned and informed the king of what had passed, who was much pleased, and highly commends 120
ed his conduct.    This had a favourable effect for
us, not only on the stranger tribes, but the inhabi-Jl
tants themselves, who  treated us  afterwards  w\jth
less disrespect. '^^-''    •   *'    .   .'■'      'f^
6    In the latter part of July, Maquina informed me
that he was going to war with the A-y-charts, a
tribe living at about fifty miles to the south, on account of some controversy that had arisen the preceding summer, and  that.I must make a number,
of daggers for his men, and cheetoolths  for his
chiefs, which having completed, he wished me to
make .for his owiruse a weapon of quite a different
form, in order to dispatch his enemy by one blow
on the head, it being the calculation  of these na- |
tions on going to war, to surprize their adversaries
while asleep.    This was a steel' dagger, or more
properly a spike, of about  six  inches  long made
very sharp, set at right angles in an iron handle of
fifteen inches long, terminating at the lower efid in
a crook or turn, so as to prevent its being wrenched from the  hand, and at the upper, in   a round
knob or head, from whence the spike protruded.
This instrument I polished highly, and the more to
please Maquina, formed on the back of the knob,M
the resemblance of a man's head, with the mouth
open, substituting for eyes, black beads, which I
(fastened in with red sealing wax.v   This  pleased
him much, and was greatly admired by his chiefs,
who wanted me to make similar ones for them, but
Maquina would not suffer it, reserving for himselfM
alone this weapon.
When these people  have finally determined on
War, they make it an invariable practice for three
or four weeks prior to the expedition, to go  into .
th§ water five or six times* a day, where they wash
and scrub themselves from head to foot with bush JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
es intermixed with briars, so that their bodies and
faces will often be entirely covered with blood.
During this severe exercise, they are continually
Exclaiming, ' "Wocash Quahootze^ Teechamme
ah welth, wik-etish tau-ilth-—Kar-sab-matemas—•
Wik-sish to hank matemas—/ ya-ish kah-shitth
—As-smootish warich matemas—Which signifies,
Good, or great God, let me live—Not be sick—
Fkid the enemy—Not fear him—Find him asleep,
and kill a great many of him. During the whole of
this period they have jio intercourse with their
women, and for a week, at least, before setting out,
abstain from feasting Or any kind of merriment,
appearing thoughtful, gloomy, and morose, and for
the three last days, are almost constantly in the
water, both day and night, scrubbing and lacerating themselves in a terrible manner. Maquina
having informed Thompson and myself jthat he
should take us with him, was very, solicitous that
we should bathe and scrub ourselves in the same
way with them, telling me that it would harden
our skins so that the weapons of the enemy wotild
UOt pierce thefti, but as we felt no great inclination
to amuse ourselves in this manner, we declined it*
The expedition consisted of forty canoes, carrying from ten to twenty men each. Thompson and
myself ajmed ourselyes with cutlasses and pistols,
but the natives, although they had a plenty of
Eutopean arms, took with them only their daggers
and cheetoolths, with a few bows and arrowTs, the
latter being about a yard in length,, and pointed
with copper, muscle shell, or bone: the bows are
four feet and a half" long, with strings 'made of
whale sinew..
To go to A-y-chart, we ascended from twenty
to thirty miles, a river about the size of that of
fa IF 122
' I
Tashees, the banks of which are high and covered
with wood.    At midnight, we came in sight of the
village, which was situated on the we§£ bank fiearft
the shore on a steep hill  difficult of access,  andjl
well calculated for defence.    It consisted of fifteen
or sixteen houses, smaller than those at Nootka,
and built in the same style, but compactly placed.
By Maquina's directions, the attack was deferred^
until the first appearance of dawn, as he said that
was the time when men slept the soundest.
|| At length  all being ready for the attack, we
landed with the greatest silence, and going aroundjf
so as to q$me upon the foe in the rear, clambered
up the hill^ and while the natives, as is their custom, entered  the  several  huts, creeping on all||
fours, my comrade and myself stationed ourselves^
without, to intercept those who 'should attempt to
escape, or come to the aid of their friends.    iM
wished if possible, not to stain my hands  in the
bloojL of any fellow crekture, and though Thompson would gladly have put to death all the savages
in the country, he was too brave to think of attacking a sleeping enemy.    Having entered the houses,
on the war-whoop being given by Maquina, as he
seized the head of the chief, and gave him the fatal.
blowr all proceeded to the work of death.    The
A-y-charts being thusf surprised, were unable to
make resistance, and with the exception of a veryS
few, who were so fortunate as to make their escape,
were* all killed or taken prisoners on condition of M
becoming slaves to their captors.    I also had the
good fortune to take four captives, whom Maquina, as a favor, permitted me to consider as mine,
and occasionally employ them in fishing for me;
as for Thompson, who thx|sted for revenge, he had
ao wish to take any prisoners^ but with his cutlass, !      .
the only Wiapon he wQhld employwpjiSt thetri,
succeeded in killing seven stout fdfiOws who came
to attack him, an act which oltained him great
credit with Maquina and the chiefs, who after this,
held him in much higher estimation, afid gave him
the appellation of Chehiel-suma-har, it being the
name of a very celebrated wa$ior of their fetiott in
ancient times, whose exploits were the constant
theme of their praise. ||     '#■•; 1©
Thompson slaying the Natives. lp
.After having put to death all the old and Infirm
of either sex, as is the barbarous practice of these
people, and destroyed the buildings, we re-embarked with'our booty in our -canoes, for Nootka,
where we were received with great demonstrations
of joy by the women and children, accompanying our war-song with a most furious drumming on
the houses. The next day a great feast was given
by Maquina, in celebration of his victory, which
was terminated as usual with a dance b^ Sat-sat-
sak-sis.        Wm '^9       ^ ■ ^ ' IP?
Repeated applications had been made to Maquina, by a numbef of Jrings or chiefs, to purchase
ill if
ml 124
M               ill;:
j^H 11] J
■I *"ll J
me, esj^cially after he had showed them the harpoon I had made for him, which he took much
pride in, but he constantly refused to part with me
on any terms.—Among these, the king of the
Wickinninish was partieulaiiy solicitous to obtain
me, having twice applied to Maquina for that purpose," once in a very formal manner, by sending
his messenger with four canoes, who, as he-approached the shore, decorated in their highest style,
with the white down on his head, &c. declared
that he eame|jo buy Tooteyoohannis, the name by
which I was known to them/for his master, and
that he had brought for that purpose four young
male slaves, two highly ornamented canoes, such
a number, of skins of the metamelth, and. of the
quartlack) or sea-otter, and so many fathoms of
cloth and of I-whaw, while as he mentioned the
different articles, they were pointed out or held
up by his attendants, but even jhis tempting offer had
no influence on Maquiua; who in the latter part of
the summer, was,again very strongly urged to sell
mo by Ulatilla, or as he is generally called, Ma-
chee Ulatilla, chief of the Klaizzar^, who had
come to Nootka on a visit.    * j^        J|
m This chief, who could speak tolerable English,
had much more the appe^ance of a civilized «man,
than any of trie savages that I saw. ft'He appeared
to be about thirty, w^g rather small in his person,
but e&tremely well firmed, with a skfti almost as
fair as that of an E&opean, good features, and a
countenance expreMive of candour and amiable-
ness, #nd which wa£ almost always brightened with
a smile. He was rimch neater both in his dress
and person than any of the other chiefs, seldom
wearing paint, except upon his eye-brows, which
after the custom of his country, were plucked out, JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
and a few strips of the pelpelth on the lower part of
his face. He always treated me with much kindness, was fond of conversing with me in English and
in his own language, asking me many questions rela^
tive to my country, its manners, customs, &c. and
appeared' to take a strcgig interest in my fate, telling me, that if he could persuade Maquina to part
with me, he would put me on board tbfe first ship
that came to his country; a promise, which from
his subsequent conduct, I have good reason to
think he would haye performed, as my 'deliverance, at length, from captivity and suffering was,
under the favour of divine providence, wholly owing to him, the only letter that ever reached an ;
European or American vessel, out of sixteen that
I wrote at different times, and sent to various parts
of the coast, having been delivered by him in person. So much pleased was I with this man's behaviour to me while at Nootka, that X made for
him a Cheetoolth, which I burnished highly, and
engraved with figures; with this he was greatly de- ,
lighted; I also should have made for him a harpoon
would Maquina have consented.§      ' <- '. >1
With hearts full of dejection and almost lost to,
hope, no ship having appeared off Nootka this season, did my companion and myself accompany the
tribe on their removal in September to Tashees,
relinquishing in consequence, for six months, even
the, remotest expectation of relief.
Soon after our establishment there, Maquina informed me, that he and his chiefs had held council
both before and after quitting Nootka, in which
they had determined that I must marry one of their
women, urging as a reason to. unduee me to consent, that, as there was now no probability of a ship
coming to Nootkato release me, that I must con-
mil im
sider myself as destined to pass the remainder of my
life with them, that the sooner I conformed to
their customs the better, and that a wife and family
would render me more contented and satisfied with
their mode of living. I remonstrated against this
decision, but to no purpose, for he told me that
should I refuse, both Thompson and myself would
be put to death, telling me however, that if there
were none of the women of his tribe that pleased
me, he would go with me to some of the other
tribes, where he would purchase for me such an
one as I should select. Reduced to this sad extremity, with death on the one side, and matrimony on the other, I thought proper to choose
what appeared to me the least of the two evils,
and consent to be married, on Vendition, that as
I did not fancy any of the Nootka women, I should
be permitted to make choice of one from some
other tribe.   .' ^|   ft ■: M)'} :^^^^'
This being settled, the next morning by day-light
Maquina with about fifty men in two canoes, se\
out with me for A-i-tfz-zart, taking with him a
quantity of cloth, a number of muskets, sea-otter
skins, &c. for the purchase of my bride. With
the aid of our paddles and sails, being favoured
with a fair breeze, we arrived some time before
sun set at the village. Our arrival excited a general alarm, and the men hastened to the shore,
armed with the weapons of their, country, makiflg
many warlike demonstrations, ^and displaying much
zeal and activity. We in the meantime remained
quietly seated in our canoes, where we remained
for about half an hour, when the messenger of the
chief, dressed in their best manner, came to welcome us, and invite us on shore to eat. We followed him in procession to the chiefs hopse,. Ma-
II I^tjft	
quina at our head, taking care to leave a sufficient
number in the boats to protect the property.
When we came to the house, we were ushered in
with much ceremony, and our respective seats
pointed out to us, mine being next to Maquina by
his request.   ,. ';'^i: '     ||
After having been regaled with a feast bf herring
spawn and oil, Maquina asked me if I saw any
among the women who were present that I liked.
I immediately pointed out to him a young girl of
about seventeen, the daughter of ^Upquesta, the
chief, who was sitting near him by her mother.
On this Maquina making a sign to his men, arose
and taking me by the hand, walkedjnto the middle,of the room, and sent off two of his men to
bring the boxes containing the presents from the
canoes. In the mean time Kinneclimmets, the
master of ceremonies, whom I have already spoken of, made himself ready for the part he was to
^ict, by powdering his hair with the white down.—
When the chests were brought in, specimens of
the several articles were taken out, and'showed by
our men, one, of whom held up a musket, another
a skin, a third a piece of cloth, &c. On this
Kinneclimmets stepped forwrard, and addressing
the chief, informed him that all these belonged to
me, mentioning the nurpber of each kind,' and that
they were offered him for the purchase of his
daughter Eu-stoch-ee-exqua^ as a wife for me.
As he said this, the men who held up the various
articles, walked up to the chief, and with a very
stern and morose look, the complimentary one on*
these occasions, threw them at his feet. Immediately on which, all the tribe, both men and women, who were assembled on this occasion, set
up a cry of Klaek-ko-Tyee,  that Is, Thank ye
MP8 128
jewitt's narrative*
chief. His men, after thigr ceremony, having returned to their places, Maquina rose, and im a
speech of more than half an hour, said much in my
praise to *the*A-i-tiz-zart chief, telling him that I
was as good a man as themselves, differing from
them only in being* white, that I was besides acquainted with many things of which they were ignorant; that I l$new how to make daggers, chee-
toolths, and harpoons,. and wras a very valuable
person, whom he was determined to keep always
with him; praising me at the same time for the
goodness of my temper, and the manner in which
I had conducted since I had been with them, ob-
servirig that all the people of Nootka, and even
the children loved me.       i       •      ||; \
.While Maquina was speaking, his master of cer-
ejnonies was continually skipping jabout, leaking
the most extravagant gestures and exclaimsag Wocash.    When he had ceased, the A-i-tiz-zart chief
arose amidst the acclamations of his people,.and
began with setting forth the many good qualities and
accomplishments   of his  daughter; that he loved
her greatly,   and as she was his only one,  he
could not think of parting with her.    He spoke
in this mannerfor some time, but finally concluded,
by consenting  to the proposed union, requesting
that she might be well used and kindly treated by
her husband. f'At the close of this speech, when
the chief began to manifest a disposition^ consent
to our union, Kinneclimmets again began to  call
out as loud as  he could bawl,  Wocash,   cutting a
thousand capers and spinning himself around on his
heel like a top.
When Upquesta had finished his speech, he directed his people to carry back the presents- which
Maquina had given him, to me, together with two JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
young male slaves to assist me in fishing. These,
after having^eengplaced before me, were by
Maquina's men taken on board the canoes. This
ceremony being over, wre were invited by one of
the principal chiefs to a feast,' at his house, of
Klussamit, or dried herring, where after the eating wras over, Kinneclimmets amused the company
very highly with his tricks, and the evening's entertainment was closed by a new war-song from
our men, and one in return from the A-i-tiz-zarts,
accompanied with expressive gestures, and wielding of their weapons.    Ii |
After this, our corripany returned to lodge at
Upquesta's, except a few who wTere left on board
the canoes to,watch the property. In the morning I received from the chief his,daughter, with an
earnest request that I would*use her well, which I
promised him, when taking leave of her parents,
she accompanied me with apparent satisfaction on
board of the canoe. §1
The wind being ahead, the natives were obliged
to have recourse to their paddles, accompanying
them*with"their songs, interspersed with the witticisms and buffbnry of Kinneclimmets, who, in his
capacity of king's steersman, one of his functions
which I forgot to enumerate, not only* guided the
course of the canoe, but regulated the singing of
the boatmen. At about five in the morning, we
reached Tashees, wThere we found all the inhabi-
iants collected on the shore to receive us. We
were welcomed with loud shouts of joy, and exclamations of Wocash, and the women taking my
bride under their charge, conducted her to Maquina's house, to be kept with them for ten days;
it being an universal custom as Maquina informed
me, that no intercourse should take place between
m 130
, jewitt's narrative.
the new married pair during that period. At
night Maquina gave a great feast, which was succeeded by a dance, in wdiich all the women joined,
and thus ended the festivities of my marriage.
The term of my restriction over, Maquina assigned me as an apartment, the space in the upper
part of his house, between him and his eldfer brother, whose room was opposite. Here I established
myself with my family, consisting of myself and
wife, Thompson and the little Sat-sat-sak-sis, who
had always been strongly attached to me, and now
solicited his father to let him li$& with me, to
which he consented. This boy wa$ handsoine, extremely Well formed, amiable, aftd of a pleasant,
sprightly disposition. I used to take a pleasure in
decorating him with rings, bracelets, ear jewels,
&c. which I made for him of copper, and ornamented and polished them in my best manner. I
was also very carefol to keep him free from verfriin
of every kind, washing him and combing his hatf
every day. These marks oft attention were not
only very pleasing to the child, who delighted in
being kept neat and clean, as wrell as in being dressed^ off in his finery, but was highly gratifying both
to Maquina arid his queen, who used to express
much satisfaction at my cafe of him. I
In making my domestic establishment, I determined, as far as possible, to live in. a more comfortable and cleanly mariner than the others. For
this purpose, I erected With planks, a partition of
about three feet high, between mine and the ad*-
joining rooms, and rnade three bedsteads of tlje
same, which I covered with boards, for my family
to sleep on, which I found much more comfortable than sleeping on the floor asiidst the dirt..    jl«
Fortunately I found my Indian princess both JEWITT S NARRATIVE*
ami&ble and intelligent, for one whose limited
sphere of observation must necessarily give rise
to but a few ideas. She was extreihely ready to
agree to any thing that I proposed relative to our
mode of living, was very attentive in keeping her
garments and person neat and clean, and appeared
in every respect, solicitous to please me. She
was, as I haves$id, about seventeen; her person
was small, but well formed, as were her features,
her complexion was, without exception, fairer
than any of the women, with considerable colour
in her cheeks, her hair long, black, and much softer than is usual with them, and her teeth small,
even, and of a dazzling whiteness, while the expression of her countenance, indicated sweetness
of temper and modesty. She would, indeed, have
beTen considered as very pretty in any country, and
excepting Maquina's queen, was by fat the handsomest of any of their women.
With a partner possessing so many attractions,
many may be apt to conclude g that I must have
found myself happy, at least comparatively so; but
far otherwise was it with me, a compulsory marriage with .the most beautiful and accomplished person in the world, can never prove a source of real
happiness, and in my situation, I could not but
view this connection as a chain thatTvas to bind me
down to this savage land, and prevent my ever
again*seeing a civilized country; especially, when
in a few days after, Maquina informed me that
there had been a meeting of his chiefs in which it
was determined, that as I had married one of'their
women, I must be considered as one of them, and
conform to their customs, and that in future, neither myself nor Thompson should wear oyy European clotites, but dress in Kutsaks like themselves
I This order was to me most painful, but I persuad-1
ed Maquina, at length, so far to relax in it as to
permit me to wTear those I had at present, which
•were almost worn out, and not to compel- Thompson to change his dress, observing,* that as he was
an old man, such a change would cause his death.
.Their religious celebration, which the last year*
took place in December, was in this, commenced
on the 15th of November, and continued for fourteen days. As I was now considered as one of
them, instead of being ordered to the woods, Maquina directed- Thompson and myself to remain,
and pray with them to Q'uahootze to be good to
them, and thank him for what he had done. It
wras opened in much the same manner as the former. After which, all the men and women in the
village assembled at Maquirca's house, in their v
plainest dresses, and without any kind of ornaments
about them, having their heads bound around with,
the red fillet, a token of dejection and humiliation,
and their countenances expressive of seriousness
and melancholy. The performances during the
continuance* of this celebration, consisted almost
wholly in singing a number of songs to mournful
airs, the king regulating the time by-beating on his
hollow plank or drum*, accompanied by one of his
chiefs, seated-near him with the great rattle. In
the mean time, they eat but seldom, and then very
little, retiring to sleep late, and rising,at the first
appearance of dawn, and even interrupting this
short period of repose, by getting up at midnight
and singing. It was terminated by an exhibition
of a similar character to the one of the last year,
but still more cruel. A boy of twelve years old,
withrsix bayonets run into his flesh, one through*
•each arm and thigh, and through each sid*'close to EV
jewitt's narrative.
the ribs*, was carried around the room, suspended ;
upon them, without manifesting any symptoms of
pain. Maquina, on my enquiring the reason of
this display, informed me that it was an ancient
custom of his nation; to sacrifice a man at the close
of this solemnity in honour of their God, but that
his father had abolished it, and substituted this in
its place. The whole closed on the evening of •
the 29th, with a great feast of salmon spawn and
oil, at which the natives as risual, made up for
their late abstinence.||fc        . />-.., J|v - }.\ |r;
A few days after a circumstance occurred,
which, from its singularity, I cannot forbear mentioning. I was sent for by my neighbour Yealth-
lower, the king's elder brother, to file his teeth,
which operation having performed, he informed
me that a new wife, whom he had a little time before purchased, having refused to sleep with him,
it was his intention, provided she persisted in her
refusal, to bite off her nose. I endeavoured to
dissuade him from it, but he was determined, and
in fact, performed his savage threat that very
night, saying that since she would not be his wife,
she sliould not,be that of any other, and in the
morning sent her back to her father.
This- inhuman act did not, however, proceed
from any innate cruelty of disposition, or malice,
a§ he was far from being of a barbarous temper;
but such is the despotism exercised by these savages over their women, that he no doubt considered it as a just punishment for her offence, in being so obstinate and perverse; as he afterwards told
me, that in similar cases, the husband had a right,
with them, to disfigure his wife in this way, or
some other, to preVent her ever marrying again. ||
About the middle of December, we lsft Tash- i
iff: tm
jewttt's narrative.
ees for Cooptee. As usual*at this season, we
found the herring in great plenty, and here the*
same scene of riotous feasting as I witnessed the
last year, was renewed by our improvident natives,
who, in addition to their usual fare, had a plentiful supply of wild geese, which were brought us in
great quantities by the Esquates. These, as Maquina informed me, were caught with nets made
from bark, in the fresh waters of that country.
Those who take them, make choice for that purpose, of a dark and rainy night, and with their ca.-
noes stuck with lighted torches, proceed with as
little noise as possible, to the place where the
geese are collected,' who, dazzled by the light,
sufffer themselves to be approached very near,
when the net is thrown over them, and in this
ajianner, from fifty to si^ty, or even more, will
sometimes be taken at one cast.
fp On the 15th of January, 1805, about midnight,
IvVas thrown into considerable alarm, in consequence of an eclipse of the moon, being awakened
from my sleep by a great outcry of the inhabitants.
On going to discover the cause of this tumult, I
found them all out of their houses, bearing lighted
torches, singing and beating upon pieces of plank;
and when I asked them the reason of this proceeding, theyv pointed to the moon, and said that, a
great cod-fish was endeavouring to swallow her,
and that they were driving him away. The origin of this superstition I could not discover.
Though"in some respects, my situation was rendered more comfortable since my marriage, as I
lived in a more cleanly manner,'and had my food
better and more neatly cooked, of which, besides,
I had always a plenty, my slaves generally furnishing me, and Upquesta never failing to send me an jewitt's narrative.
ample supply by thfe canoes that came from A-i-tiz-
zart; still, from my being obliged at this season
of the year, to change my accustomed clothing, and
to dress like the natives, with only a piece of cloth
of about two yards long, thrown loosely around me,
my European clothes having been for some time
entirely worn out, I suffered more than I can express from the cold, especially as I was compelled
to perform the laborious task of cutting and bringing the fire wood, which was rendered still more
oppressive to rne, fromPmy comrade for a considerable part of the* winter, not having it in his
power to lend me his aid, in consequence of an
attack of the rheumatism in one of lis knees, wittf
which he suffered for more than four months, two
or three weeks of which he was so ill as to be In-
able to leave the house. This state of suffering,
with the little hope I now had of ever escaping
from the savages, began to render my life irksome
to me, still, however, I lost not riiy confidence in
the aid of the Supreme Being, to whom, whenever
the weather and a suspension from the tasks imposed on me, would permit, I never failed regularly, on Sundays, to retire to the woods to worship, taking Thompson with me when he was able
to go.     I
It On the 20th of February, we returned to our
summer quarters at Nootka, but on my part, with
far different sensations than the last spring, being
now almost in despair of any vessel arriving to release us, or our being permitted to depart if there
should.-—Soon after our retiirn,' as preparatory to
the whaling season, Maquina ordered me. to make
a good nufnber of harpooris for himself and his
chiefs, several of which I had completed ^vith
some lances, when on the'16th of March, Iw&s 1
taken very ill with a violent cholic, caused, I presume, from my having suffered so much from the
cold in going without proper clothing. For a
number of hours I was in great pain, and expected
to die, and on its leaving me, I was so weak as
scarcely to be able to stand, while I had. nothing
comforting to take, nor any thing to drink but cold
water. On the day following, a slave belonging te
Maquina died, and was immediately, as is their
custom in such cases, tossed unceremoniously out
of doors, from wh®ce he was taken by some others,
and thrown into the water. The treatment of this
poor creature made a melancholy impression upon
my mind, as I could not but think, that such probably, would be my fate should I die among these
heathen, and so far from receiving a decent burial,
that I should not even be allowed the common privilege of having a little earth thrown over my remains.
The feebleness in which the violent attack of
my disorder had* left me, the dejection I felt at the
ahnost hopelessness of my situation j and the want
of warm jclothing and proper nursing, though my
Indian wife, as far as she knew how, wras always
ready, and even solicitous, to do every thing for
me she could, still kept me very much indisposed,
which Maquina perceiving, he finally told me, that
if I did not like living with my wife,* and that was"
the cause of my being so sad, I might part with
her. This proposal I readily accepted, and the
next day Maquina sent her back to her father.
On parting with me, she discovered much emotion,
begging me that I would suffer her to remain till I
had recovered, as there was no one who would
take so good care of me as herself. § But when I
told her she must go, for that I did not think I
should ever recover,  which in truth I but little JEWITT'S NARRATIVE.
expected, and that her father would take good'
care of her, and treat her much more kindly than
Maquina, she took an affectionate leave, telling me
that she hoped I should sopn get better, and left
[her two slaves to take care of me.
- ' Though I rejoiced at, her departure, I was
greatly affected with the simple expressions of her
regard for me, and could not but feel strongly interested for this poor girl, who in all her conduct
towards ma, had discovered so much mildness and
attention to my wishes; ami had it not been that I
considered her as an almost insuperable obstacle
to ray being permitted to leave the country, I
should no doubt have felt the deprivation of her
society a realjoss. After her departure, I requested Maquina, that, as I had parted with my.wife,
he would permit me to resume my European dress,
for, otherwise, from not having been accustomed
to dress like them, I should certainly die. To
this he consented, and I once more became com-
Ifertably clad. h ^f,. ■■ v        '-. 'im x   --1§ '
Change of clothing, but more than att, the hopes
which I now began to indulge, that in the course
of the summer I should be able to escape, in a
short time restored me to health, so far, that I
could again go to work in making harpoons for
Maquina, who, probably, fearing "that he should
have to part with me, determined to provide himself with a good stock.
pi shall not however, longer detain the reader
with a detail of occurrences that intervened between
this period, and that of my escape, which, from
that dull uniformity that marks the savage,life,
would be in a measure, but repetitions, nor dwell
upon that mental torture I endured, from a constant conflict of hope and fear, when the former,
12* ■a
almost wearied out with repeated disappointment,
offered to our sinking hearts no prospect of release,
but death, to .which w'e were constantly exposed
from the brutal ignorance and savage disposition
of the common people, who in the various 4coun*-r
cHs that wTere held this season to determine what
to do with us, in case of the arrival of a ship, were
almost always for putting us to* death, expecting
by that means to conceal the murder of our crew,
and to throw the blame of it on some other tribe.
These barbarous sentiments, were, however, uniformly opposed by Maquina and his chiefs, who
would not consent to our being injured. But as
some of their customs and traits of national character, which I think deserving of-notice, have not
been mentioned, I shall proceed to give a brief
account of them.
The office of king or chief, is, with those people, hereditary, and descends to the eldest son, or
in failure of male issue, to the elder brother, who
in the regular line, is considered as the second
person in the kingdom. . At feasts, as I have observed, the king is always placed in. the highest,
or seat of honour, and the chiefs according to their
respective ranks, which appear, in general, to be
determined by their affinity to the royal family;
they are also designated by the embellishments of
their mantles, or Kutsaks. The king or head Tyee,
is their leader in war, in the management of which
he is perfectly absolute. He is also president of
their councils, which are almost always regulated
by his opinion.^ But he has no kind of power
over the property of his subjects, nor can he require them to contribute *to hfe -wants, being in
this respect, no more privileged than any other
person.    He has in common with his chiefs, the
right of holding slaves, which is not enjoyed by
private individuals, a regulation probably arising
from their having been originally captives taken in
battle, the spoils of war being understood as appertaining to the king, who receives and apportions
them among his several chiefs and warriors, according to their rank and deserts. In conformity
with this idea, the plunder of the Boston, was all
deposited in Maquina's house, who distributed part
of it among his chiefs, according to their respective ranks or degree of favour with him, giving to
one, three hundred muskets, toailother, one hundred
and fifty, with other things in like . proportion.
The king is, however, obliged to support his dignity by making frequent entertainments; and whenever he receivers a large supply of provisions, he
must invite all the men of his tribe to his house, to
eat it up, otherwise, as Maquina told me, he would
not be considered as conducting like a Tyee,
and would be no more thought of than a com-
mon man. I
With regard to their religion—They believe in
the existence of a Supreme Being, whom they call
Quahootze, and who, to use Maquina's expression,
was one great Tyee in the sky, who gave them their
fish, and could take them.from them, and was the
greatest of all kings. Their usual place of worship, appeared $o be the wrater, for whenever they
bathed, they addressed some wTords in form of
prayer to God above, intreating that he would
preserve them in .health, givi&them good success
in fishing, &c. These prayers were repeated with
much more energy, on preparing for whaling or for
war, as I have already mentioned.. Some of them
would sometimes go several miles to bathe, in order
to doit in secret; the reason for this I could neyer
i 140
* secret ma
learn, though I am induced to think it was inconsequence of some family or private quarrel, and that
they did not "wish what they said to be heard;
while at othe^imes, they would repair in the same
mer to the w7oods, to pray. This was
particularly the case with the women, who'
might also have been prompted by a sentiment'of
decency, to retire for the purpose of bathing, as
they are remarkably mpdesfc. I once found one
of our women more than two miles from the village, on her the woods, with her eye$
shut, and her facp turned towards heaven, uttering wrords in a lamentable tone, among which I
distinctly heard, Wocash jUi-welth, meaning good
Lord, and which has nearly the sanle signification
M^ith Quahootze. Though I came v^ry near her, she"
appeared not to notice me, but contikued her devotions; and I have frequently seen/he women go
alone into the woods, evidently for the purpose of
addressing themselves to a superior being, and it
was always very perceptible on their return, when
they had thus been employed, from their silence
and melancholy looks.       ?M$k
They have no belief however, in a state of future existence, as I discovered in conversation with
Maquina, at Tootoosch's death, on my attempting
to convince him, that he still existed, and that he
would again see hijn after his deaih: but he could
comprehend nothing of it, and pointing to the
ground, said that there wras the, end of him, and
that he was like that. Nor do they believe in
ghosts, notwithstanding the case of Tootoosch
would appear to contradict this- assertion, but that
was a remarkable instance, and such a one as had
never been known to occur before; yet .from the
mummeries performed over the sick, it is very ap- JEWITT S NARRATIVE.
parent that they believe in the agency of spirits, as
they attribute disease to some evil one that has entered the body of the patient. Neither have they
any priests, unless a kind of conjuror may be so
considered, who sings and prays over the sick, to
drive away the evil spirit.
On the birth of twins, they have a most singular
custom, which, I presume, has its origin in some
religious opinion, but what it is, I could never satisfactorily learn. The father is prohibited for the
space of two years from eating any kind of meat,
or fresh fish, during which time', he does no kind
of labour whatever, being supplied with what he
has occasion for from the tribe. In the mean
time he and his wife,.who is also obliged to conform to the same abstinence, with their children,
live entirely s&f^rate from the others, a small-hut
being built for their accommodation, and he is never
invited to any of the feasts, except such as consist wholly of dried provision", wThere he is treated
with great respect, and seated among vthe chiefs,
though no more himself, jByan a private individual.
Such births are very rare aAMig them; an instance
of the kind however occurred%hile I wras It Tateh-
ees the last time^but it was the only on@^Mmvn
since the reign of the former king. Thwfather
always appeared very thoughtful and gloomy, never
associated with the other inhabitants, and was at
none of the feists but such as were entirely of
dried provisfon, and of this, he eat not to excess,
and constantly retired before the amusements commenced. His dress was very plain, and he wore
around his head the red fillet of bark, the symbol
of mourning and devotion. It was his daily practice to repair to the mountain, with a chief's rattle
in his hand, to sing and pray, as Maqaina informed
m 142
me, for the fish, to come into their waters. When
not thus employed, he kept continually at home,
except when serit for to sing and perform his ceremonies over the sick, being considered as a sacred
character, and one    much in favour   with   their
s6ds- ■  *    -    Kjfc B      is S-,
These people are remarkably healthful, and }ive
to a very advanced age, having quite a youthful
appearance for their years. They have scarcely
any disease but the cholic, their remedy for which,
is friction, a person rubbing thehowels of the sick
violently, until the pain has subsided, while the
conjuror or holy man, is employed, in the mean
time, in making his gestures, singing, and repeating
certain words, and blowing off the evil spirit, when
the patient is wrapped up in a bear skin in order to
produce perspiration. Their cure^for the rheumatism, or similar pains, which I saw applied by Maquina, .in the case of Thompson, tq whom it gave relief, is by cutting or scarifying the part affected.
In dressing wounds, they simply wash them with
salt water, and bind thgln up with.a strip of cloth,
or the bark of atre^ They are, however; very
expert and. successful in the cure of fractured or
dislocated limbs, reducing them very dexterously,
and after binding them up with bark, supporting *
them with blocks of wood, so as to preserve
their J position. During the whole time I was
among them, but five natural deaths occurred,.
Tootoosch and his two children, an infant son of
Maquina, and the slave whom I have mentioned, a
cirumstance not a little remarkable in a ^population
of about fifteen hundred; ana ?s respects child-
birth, so light do thdV make of it, that I have.seen
their women the-day after, employed as usual, as if
little or nothing had happened*     . - ■*' J;- t+'M^.Zr
jewitt's narrative.
The Nootkiaris in their conduct towards each
other, are in general pacific and inoffensive, and
appear by no means an ill tempered race, for I do
not recollect any instance of a violent quarrel between any of the men, or the men and their wives,
while I was with them, that of Yealthlower excepted. But when they are in the least offended,
they appear to be in the most violent rage, acting
like so many maniacs, foaming'at the mouth, kicking and spitting most furiously; but this is rather a
fashion with thern, than a demonstration of malignity, as in their public speeches, they use the same
violence, and he is esteemed the greatest orator,
wdio +bawls the loudest, stamps, tosses himself
about, foams and spits the most.
In speaking of their regulations, I have, omitted
mentioning, that on attaining the age of seventeen,
the eldest son of a chief, is considered as a chief'
himself, and that whenever the father makes a present, it is always done in the name of his eldest son,
or if he has none,-in that of his daughter. The
chiefs, frequently purchase their wives at the age
of eight or ten, to prevent their being engaged by
others, though they do not)take them from their
parents until they are sixteen.
With regard to climate, the greater part of the
spring, summer, and autumn, is very pleasant, the
weather being at no time oppressively hot, and
the winters uncommonly mild, for so high a lati
tude, at least as far as my experience went. A,
Tashees and Cooptee, where we passed the coldest part of the season, the winter did not set in till
late in December, nor have I ever known the ice,
even on the fresh water pond£, more than two or
three inches in thickness, or a snow exceeding four
inches in depth; but what is wanting in snow, is am- 144
ply made up in rain; as I have frequently knowrn it
during the winter months % rain almost incessantly
for five or '.six days in succession.
It'was now past mid-summer, "and the hopes we
had indulged of our release, became daily more
faint, for though wre h^d heard of no less than seven,
vessels on the coast, yet none appeared inclined to
venture to Nootka. The destruction of the Boston,
the largest, strongest, and best equipped ship, with
much the most valuable cargo of any that had ever
been fitted out for the North-West trade, had inspired the commanders of others with a general dread
of coming thither; lest they should share the same
fate; and though in the letter I wrote (imploring
those who should receive them, to come to the
relief of two unfortunate Christians who wrere suffering among heathen), I stated the cause of the
Boston's capture, and that there was not the least
danger in coming to Nootka, provided they would
follow the directions I laid down; still I felt very
little encouragement, that any of these letters would
come to hand, when on the morning of the nineteenth of July, a day that will be ever held by me
in grateful remembrance, of the mercies of God,
while I wras employed with Thompson in forging
daggers for the king, my ears were saluted with the
joyful sound of three cannon, and the cries of the
inhabitants, exclaiming, Weena, weena—Mameth-
lee—that is, strangers,—white men.
Soon after, several of orir people came running
into the house, to inform me that a. vessel under
full sail wras coming* into the harbour. Though
my heart bounded with joy, I repressed my foel-
ipgs1, and affecting to pay no attention to what wTas
said, told Thompson to b£ on his guard, and not
betray any joy, las our  release,' and perhaps our Arrival of the brig Lydia, at Nootka Sound.
lives, depended on our conducting ourselves so as
to induce the natives to suppose we were not very
anxious to leave them. *We continued our w<^pks
as if nothing had happened, when in a few minutes
after, Maquina came in, and seeing us at work
appeared much surprised, and asked me if I did
not know that a vessel had come. I Answered in
a careless manner, that it was nothing to me.
How, John, said he, you no glad go board. I
replied that I cared very little about it, as I had
become reconciled to their manner of living, and
had no wish to go awray. He then told me, that he
had called a council of his people respecting us,
and that we must leave off work and be present at it.
The men having assembled at Maquina's house,
he asked them what was their opinion should be
done with Thompson and myself now a vessel had
arrived, and whether he had not better go on board
himself, to make a trade, and procure such articles
as were wanted. Each one of the tribe who
wished, gave his opinion. Some were for putting
us to death, and pretending to the strangers, that
a different nation had cut off the Boston, while
others, less barbarous, were for sending us fifteen
or twenty miles back into the country until the departure cf the vessel. These, however, were the
sentiments of the common people, the chiefs opposing our being put to death, or injured, and
several of them, among the most forward of whom
were YealtjWower and the young chief, Tooioin-
nakinnish, were for immediately releasing us; but
this, if he could avoid it, by no means appeared to
accord with Maquina's wishes. ^!^^^S fr 11
'^Having mentioned Toowinnakinnish, I shall
briefly observe, that he was a young man of about
twenty-three years old, the only son of Toopees-
hottee, the oldest and most respected chief of the
tribe. His son had always been remarkably kind
and friendly to me,, and I had in return frequently
made for him daggers, cheetoolths, and other things,
in my best manner.*% He was one of the handsomest men among them, very amiable, and much
milder in his manners than any of the others, as
wdll as* neater both in his person and house, at
least his apartment, without even excepting Maquina. ■* ':!!.'•
With regard, however, to Maquina's going on
board the vessel, which he discovered a strong inclination to do, there was but one opinion, all remonstrating against it, telling; hirii that the captain
wouldTdll him or keep him a prisoner, in consequence of his having destroyed our ship. When
Maquina had heard their opinions, he told them
that he was not afraid of being hurt from going on
board the vessel, but that he would, however, in
that respect, be guided by John, whom he had
always found true. H'He then turned to me, and
asked me if I thought there would be any danger JEWITT S NARRATIVE
in his going, on board. I answered, that I was not
surprised at the advice his people had given him,
unacquainted as they were with the manners of the IS
white men, and judging them by their own, but if
they had been with them as much as I had, or
even himself, they would think very different./
That he had almost always experienced good and
civil treatment from *them, nor had he any reason
td fear the contrary now, as they never attempted
to harm those who did not injure them, and if he
wished to go on board, he might do 4t, in my
opinion, with securitylp^After reflecting a few
moriienfs, he said, with much apparent satisfaction,
that if I would write a letter to the captain, telling
him good of him that he hacl treated Thompson
and myself kindly since \ve had been with him,
and to use him well, he would go. It may readily be supposed that I felt much joy at this determination; but knowing that the least incaution
might annihilate all my hopes of escape, * I was
careM not to manifest it, and to treat his going or
staying as a matter perfectly indifferent to me. I
told him that if he wished me to write such a letter,
I had no objection, as it was the truth, otherwise
I cjuld not have done it.
I then proceeded to write the recommendatory
letter, wiiich the reader will naturally imagine wTas
of a somewhat different tenor from the one he had
required; for if deception is in any case warrantable, it was certainly so  in  a situation like  ours, jjj
wiiere the only chance of regaining thatN freedom
H which we had been so unjustly deprived, de- jjj
pended upon it; and I trust that few, even of the |
most rigid,;will condemn  me with severity fori
making use of it, on an   occasion which afforded"1
ine the only hope of ever more beholding a Chris* f|
tm 1 a o
tian country, and preserving myself, if not from
death, at least from a life of continued suffering.
The letter which I wrote, was nearly hi the following terms:—
To Captain
of the Brig ,
Nootka, July 19, 1805.
THE bearer of this letter is the Indian king by
the-name of Maquina. He was the instigator of
the capture the ship Boston, of Boston in North
America, John Salter captain, and of the murder of
twenty-five men of hev crew, the two only survivors
being now on shore—Wherefore I hope you will
take care to confine him according to his merits,
putting in,your dead lights, and keeping so good a
watch over him, that he cannot escape from you.
By so doing we shall be able to obtain our reltase/in
the course of a few hours. jjjjf     i§$"
M       JOHN R. JEWITT, Armourer
of the Boston, for Mmself and
John Thompson, Sail-maker of said ship.
te I have been asked how I dared to write in this
manner: my answer is, that from my long residence among these people, I knew that I had little
to apprehend from their anger on hearing of their
king being confined, while they knew his life depended upon my release, and that they would sooner, have given up five hundred white men, than*
have had him injured *    This will serve to explain JEWITT-S NARRATIVE
the little apprehension I felt at their menaces afterwards, for otherwise, sweet as liberty was to me,
I should hardly have ventured on so hazardous an
On my giving the letter to Maquina, he asked
me to explain H,to him. This I did line'by line,
as he pointed them out with his finger, but in a
sense verylfifFerent from the real, giving him to
understand that I had written to the captain, that
as he had been kind to me since I had been taken
by him, that it was my wish that the captain should
treat him accordingly, and give him what molasses, biscuit, arid rum he wTanted. When I had
finished, placing his finger in a significant manner
on my name at the bottom, and eyeing me with a
look that seemed to read my inmost thoughts, he
said to me, If John, you no lie?" . Never did I
undergo such a scrutiny, or ever experience greater apprehensions than I felt at that moment, when
my destiny was suspended on the slightest thread,
and the least mark of embarrassment on mine, or
suspicion of treachery on his part, would probably
have rendered my life the sacrifice. Fortunately
I was able to^preserve my composure, and my being painted in the Indian manner, which Maquina
had since my marriage, required of me, prevented
any change$n my countenance from being noticed,
and I replied with considerable promptitude, looking at him in my turn, with all the confidence I
could muster, u Wtiy do you ask me such a question, Tyee? have ycfu ever known me to lie?'
1 No." u Then how can you suppose I shoulo|
tell you a lie no#, since I have never done it.'l|
As I was speaking, he still continued looking all
me with the same piercing eye, but observing noth^
ing to excite his suspicion, he told me thaffehe be
# 150
jijtvttt's narrative.
lieved what I said was true, and that lie would go
on hoard, and gave orders to get ready his cano
His chiefs again attempted to dissuade him, usin
.   every argument for tha. purpose, while his  wives-
crowded around him, begging him on their knees,
not to trust himself with the  white men.    Fortu-
|   nately for my companion and myself, so strong was
his wish of going on board the vessel, that he wa>$
deaf to their solicitations, and making no other re-
I ply to them, than, % John no lie," left the house,
taking four prime skins with him as a present to the
captain. i%   • '. n  .'
Bfcp Scarcely had the canoe put off!, when he order-
I ed his men to stop, and calling to me, asked me
I if I did not want to go on board with him.    Sus-
| peeling this as a question  merely intended to en-
Ij snare me, I replied that i had no wish to do it, not
IIhaving any desire to leave them.     jf'
|||     On going on board the brig, Maquina immedi-
|ately gave his present of skins and my letter to the
jjfcaptain,; who on  reading it, asked him into the
cabin, where he gave him some biscuit and a glass
H of rum, at the" same time, privately directing his
pnate to go forward, and return with five or si* of
Jlljthe men armed.    When they appeared, the cap-
j   tain told Maquina that he was jiis prisoner, and
Should continue so, until the two^men, whom he
cnew to be on shore, were released, at the same
Bme ordering him to be put in irons, and die winnows secured, which was instantly done, and a
fouple of men placed as a guard over him.    Ala-
iuina was greatly surprised ftnd terrified at this re-
ijbption; he however, made no attempt to resist,,
jut requested the captain to permit one of his men
ih come and see him.    One of them was aecord-
ijjgly called,, and Maquina said something to him jewitt's narrative.
v.hkh the captain did not understand, but supposed to be an order to release us, when the man^gp|
turning to the canoe, it was paddled off with Jife^
utmost expedition to the shore. As the canoe approached, the inhabitants, who had all collected
upon the beach, manifested some uneasiness at not
seeing their king on board, but when on its arrival,
they were told that the captain had made him a
prisoner, and that John had spoke 'bad about him
in a letter, they all both men and women, setltip
a loud howl, and ran backwards and forwards upon
the shore like so many lunatics, scratching their
faces, and tearing the hair in handfuls from/tleir
heads. |§
After they had beat about in this manner for
some tinje, the men ran to their huts for their
weapons, as if preparing to attack aft invading
enemy; while Maquina's wives and the rest of the
women, came around me, and throwing themselves
on their knees, begged me with tears to spare his
life, and Sat-sat-saK-sis, who kept constantly with
rfve, taking me by the hand, wept bitterly, and joined his entreaties to theirs, that I would not let the
white men kill his father. I told them not to afflict themselves, that Maqyina's life was in no danger, nor would the least harm be done to him. :Wk
The men were.however, extremely exasperated
with me, more particularly the common people,
who came running in the most furious manner towards me, brandishing their weapons, and threatening to cut me in pieces no bigger than their
thumb nails, while others declared they would
burn me alive over a slow fire, suspended by my
heels. All this fury, however, caused me but lit||
tie alarm, as I felt convinced they would not dar|i
to execute their threats while the king was oil
& 152
board the brig.    The chiefs took no part in this
violent conduct, but came to me and enquired the
reason why Maquina had been thus treated, and if
•     the captain intended to kill him.    I told them that
if they would silence the people, so that I could
t    be heard,   I would explain all to them.    They
.   immediately put a stop  to the noise, when  I in-
;' formed them that the captain in confining Maquina,
had done it of his own accord, and only in order
to make them release Thompson and myself, as
he well knew  we wrere with them, and if they
would do that, their king would receive no  in-   I
jury, but be well  treated, otherwise he would be
kept a prisoner.    As many of them did not appear
to be satisfied with this, and began to repeat their
murderous threats—Kill me, said I to them; if it
is your wish, throwing open the bear skin which I
wore, here is my breast, I am only one among so
[many, and can make no resistance, but unless you
B|wish to see your king hanging by his neck to that
||pole, pointing to the yard arm of the brig, and the
If sailors firing at him with bullets, you will not do it.
0 no, was the general cry, that must never be; but
■ppyhat must  we  do?    I  told them that their  best
I plan would be, to  send  Thompson on board, to
I desire the captain to use Maquina well till I was. released, which would  be soon.     This  they were
[[perfectly willing to do, and I directed Thompson
Ko go on board.    But he objected, saying that he
Jwould not leave me alone with the savages.    I told
him not to be under any fear for me, for that if J
could get him off, I could manage well enough for
myself, and that I wished him immediately on get-
Eng on board the brig, to see the captain, zr.d re-    j: ,
luest him to keep Maquina close till I was released, as I was in no danger while he had hirn safe. ^Ewitt's narrative.
When I saw Thompson off, I asked the natives
what they intended to do with me. They said I
must talk to the captain again, in another letter,
and tell him- to let his boat come on shore with
Maquina, and that I should be ready to jump into
the boat at the same time Maquina should jump on
shore. I told them that the captain, who knew
that they had killed my shipmates, would never
trust his men so near the shore for fear they would
kill them too, as they were so much more numerous; but that if they would select any three of
their nuriSbej; to go with me in a canoe, when we
came within hail^ I could desire the captain to
send his boat with Maquina, to receive me in exchange for him.
This appeared to please them, and after some
whispering among the chiefs, who from what words
I overheard, concluded that if the captain should
refuse to send his boat with Maquina, the three
men, would have no difficulty in bringing me back
with them, they agreed to my proposal, and selected three of their stoutest meny to convey me.
Fortunately having bieen for some time accustomed to see me armed, and suspecting no design on
my part, they paid no attention to the pistols that I
had about me.        ^ # ff
As I was going into the canoe, little Sat-sat-sak-
%is, who could not bead* to part with me, asked me,
with an affecting simplicity, since I was going
away to leave him\, if the white men would not
Jet his father come on shore, and not kill him. I
told him not to be concerned, for that no one
should injure his father, when taking an affectionate leave of me, and again begging me not to let
the white men hurt his father, he ran to comfort
: 154
his mother, who was at a little distance, with the
assurances I had given him.
On entering the canoe, I seated myself in the
prow facing the three men, having determined if it
was practicable, frorn the moment I found Maquina was secured, to get on board the vessel before
he was released, hoping by that means, to be enabled to obtain the restoration of wtiat property belonged to the Boston, still remaining in the possession of the savages, which I thought, if it could
be done, a duty that I owed to the owners.
.With feelings of joy impossible to be described,
did I quit this savage shore, confident now that
nothing could thwart my escape, or prevent the
execution of the plan I had formed, as the men appointed to convey and guard me, were armed
with'nothing but their paddles. As we came
within hail of the brig, they at once ceased pad-
dlirig, when presenting my pistols at them, I ordered them instantly to go on, or I would shoot
the whole of them. A proceeding so wholly unexpected, threw them into great consternation, and
resuming their paddles; in a few moments, to my
inexpressible delight, I once*naore found* myselfl
along side of a Christian ship, a happiness which I
had almost despaired of ever again enjoying. AH
the crew crowded to the side to see me as the canoe come up, and manifested much joy at my
safety. I immediately leaped on board, where I
was welcomed by the captain, Samuel Hill, of the
brig Lydia of Boston, who congratulated me on
my escape, informing me that he had received my
letter off Kla-iz-zart, from the chief IVlackee Ulatilla, who came off himself in his canoe, to deliv-
it to him, on which he immediately proceeded*
,si jewitt's narrative
hither to aid me. I returned him my thanks in
the best manner I could for his humanity, though
I hardly knew what I said, such was the agitated
state of my feelings at that moment, with joy for
my escape, thankfulness to the Supreme Being
who .had so mercifully preserved me, and gratitude
to those whom he Lad rendered instrumental in
my delivery, that I have no doubt, that what with
my strange dress, being painted with red and black
from head to foot, having a bear skin wrapped
around me, and my long hair, v^hich I was not al
lowed to cut, fastened on the top of my head in a
large bunch, with a sprig of green spruce, I must
have appeared more like one deranged than a rational creature, as captain Hill afterwards told me,
that he never saw any thing in the form of man,
look so wild as I did when I first came on board.
The captain then asked me into the .cabin,
where I found Maquina1 in irons, with a gu§rd over
him. He looked very melancholy, but on seeing
me his countenance brightened up, and he expressed his pleasure with the welcome of '* Wocash
John;" when taking him by the hand, I asked the
captain's permission to take off his irons, assuring
him, that as I was with him, there was no danger of
his being in the least troublesome. He accordingly
consented, and I felt a sincere pleasure in freeing
from fetters, a man, who, though he had caused the
death of my poor comrades, had nevertheless, always proved my friend and protector, and whom I
had requested to be thus treated, only with a view
of securing my liberty. Maquina smiled and appeared much pleased at this mark of attention from me.
When I had freed the king from his irons, captain Hill wished to learn the particulars of our capture, observing that an account of the destruction ^«s
of the ship and her crew had been received at
Boston before he sailed, but that nothing more
wras known, except that two of the men wTere living, for whose rescue the owners had offered a liberal reward, and that he had been able to get
nothing out of the old man, whom the sailors had
supplied so plentifully with ^rog, as to bring him
too much by the head to give any information.
I gave him a correct statement of the whole proceeding, together with the manner in which my life
and that of my comrade had been preserved. On
hearing my story, he was greatly irritated against
Maquina, and said he ought to be killed. I observed that however ill he might have acted in
taking our ship, yet that it would, perhaps, be wrong
to judge an uninformed savage, with the same se-»
verity as a civilized person, who had the light ofy
religion and the laws of society to guide him.
That Maquina's conduct in taking our ship, arose
from an insult that he thought he had received from
captain Salter, and from the unjustifiable conduct
of some masters of vessels, who had robbed him,
and without provocation, killed a number of his
people. Besides that, a regard for the safety of
others ought to prevent his being put to death, as I
had lived long enough with these people to know that
revenge of an injury, is held sacred by them, and
that they would not fail to retaliate, should he kill
their king, on the first vessel or boat's crew that
should give them an opportunity; and that, though
he might consider executing hhn as but an act of
iustice„ it would probably cost the lives of many
"Americans.    '§•     ■ ■   f§||
The captain appeared to be convinced from
what I said, of the impolicy of taking Maquina's
life, and said that he would leave it wholly with
me whether to spare or kill him, as he was resolved to incur no censure in either Case. I replied
that I most certainly should never take the life of
a man who had preserved mine, had I no other
reason, but as there was some of the Boston's
property still remaining on shore, I considered it
a duty that I owed to those who were interested in
that ship, to try to save it for them, and with that
view I thought it would be well to keep him on
board till it was given up. He concurred in this
proposal, saying if there was any of the property
left, it most certainly ought to be got.
« During this conversation Maquina Was in great
anxiety* as from what English he knew he perfectly comprehended the subject of our deliberation;
constantly interrupting me to enquire what we had
determined to do with him, what the captain said,
if his life would be spared, and if I did not think
that Thompson would kill him. r I pacified him as
well as I was able, by telling him that hehad nothing to fear from the captain, that he would not be
hurt, and that if Thompson wished to kill him,
which was very probable, he would not be allowed
to do it. He would then remind me that I was
indebted to him for my life, and that I ought to do
by him as he had done by me. I assured him that
such was my intention, and I requested him to* remain quiet, and not alarm himself, as no harm was
intended him. But I found it extremely difficult
to convince him of this, as it accorded so little
with the ideas of revenge entertained by them. I
told him however, that he must restore all the
property still in his possession, belonging to the
ship. This he was perfectly ready to do, happy
to escape on such terms. But as it was now past
five, and too lafte for the articles to be' collected,
i jcwitt's narrative.
and brought off, I told him that he must content
himself to remain on board witl\ me that night,
and in the morning he should be set on shore as
soon as the things were delivered. To this he
agreed, on condition that I would remain with him
in the cabin. I then went upon deck, and the canoe that brought me having been sent back, I
hailed the inhabitants, and told them that their
king had agreed to stay on board till the next day,
when he would return, but that no canoes must attempt to come near the vessel during the night, as
they would be fired upon. They answered, Wo-
ho, woho—very well, very well. I then returned
to Maquina, but so great were his terrors, that he
would not allow me to sleep, constantly disturbing
me with his questions, and repeating, " John, you
know when you was alone, and more than five
hundred men were your enemies, I was your friend
and prevented them from putting you and Thompson to death, and now I am in the powTer of your
friends, you ought to do the same by me." I assured him that he would be detained on board no
longer than the property was released, and that as
soon as it was done, he would be set at- liberty.
J& At day break I hailed the natives, and told them
that it was Maquina's order that they should bring
off the cannon, and anchors, and whatever remained with them of the cargo of the ship. This.
they set about doing with the utmost expedition,
transportingthe cannon and anchors by lashing together two of their largest canoes, and*covering
them with planks, and in the course of two hours,
they delivered every thing on board that I could
recollect, with Thompson's and my chest, containing the papers of the ship, &c. |^»
When ©very* thing belonging to the ship had jewitt's NARRATIVE.
been restored, Maquina was permitted to return in
his canoe, which had been sent for him, with a
present of what skins he had collected, which
wrere about sixty, for the captain in acknowledgment of his having spared his life and allowed him
to depart unhurt; such was also, the transport he
Telt when captain Hill came into the icabin, and
told him that he was at liberty to go, that he threw
off his mantle," which consisted of four, of the very
best skins, and gave it to him, as a mark of his
gratityde; m return for which, the captain presented
him with a new great coat ancrhat, with \dhich he
appeared much delighted. The captain then desired me to inform him that he should return to
that part of the coast in November, and that he
wished him to keep what skins he should get,
which he would buy of him. This Maquina promised, saying to me at the same time, u John, you
know I shall be then at Tashees, but when you
cpme make pow, which means, fire a gun to let
me know, and Infwill come down." When he
came to the side of the brig, he shook me cordially by the hand, and told me that he hoped I
would come to see him again in a big ship, and
bring much plenty of blankets, biscuit, molasses
and rum, for him and his son who loved me a
great deal, and that he would keep all the furs he
got for me, observing at the same time, that he
should'never more take a letter of recommendation from any one, or ever trust himself on board a
vessel unless I was there. Then grasping both
my hands, with much emotion, while the tears
trickled down his cheeks, he bade me farewell,
and stept into the canoe, which immediately paddled him on shore. ; |§|
Notwithstanding my joy at my deliverance, and 160
jewitt's narrative.
the pleasing anticipation I felt of once more be-*
holding a civilised country, and again being permitted to offer up my devotions in a Christian
church, I could not avoid experiencing a painful
sensation on parting with* this savage chief, who
had preserved my life, and in general treated me
with kindness, and considering their' ideas and
manners, much better than could have been expected.
My pleasure was also greatly damped by an unfortunate accident that occurred to Toowinnakinn-
ish. That interesting young chief had come on
board in the first canoe in the morning, anxious to
see and comfort his king. He was received with
much kindness by captain Hill, from the favorable
account I gave of him, and invited to remairi on
board.' As the muskets were delivered, he was in
the cabin with Maquina, where was also the captain, who on receiving them, snapped a number in
order to try the locks; unluckily one of thenrhaph
pened, to be loaded with swan shot, and going off,
discharged its contents into the body of poor
Toowinnakinnish, who, was sitting opposite. On
hearing the report, I instantly ran into the cabin,
where I found him weltering in his blood, with
the captain who was .greatly shocked at the accident, endeavouring to assist him. We raised him
up, and did every thing in our powei to aid and
comfort Mrii, telling him that we felt much grieved
at his misfortune, and that it was wholly unintentional; this he told me he was perfectly satisfied of,
and while we dressed and bound up his wounds in
the best manner we could, he bore the pain witfi
great calmness, and bidding me farewell, was put
oi> board/one of the canoes, and taken on shore,
where after  languishing  a few- days, he expired. JEWITT S NARRATIVE
To me, his misfortune was a source of much
affiiction, as he had no share in the massacre of
our crew, was of a most amiable character, and had
always treated me with the greatest kindness and
hospitality; .-., . -' ^ ''       $5&i|Y      '.'■■'W; J|r -
The Brig being under weigh, immediately on
Maquina's quitting us, we proceeded to the northward, constantly keeping the shore in sight, and
touching at various places for the purpose of trad
Having already exceeded the bounds I had prescribed myself, I shall not attempt any account of
our voyage upon the coast, or a description of the
various nations we met with in the course of it,
among whom were a people of a very singular appearance, called by the sailors the Wooden-lips.
They have many skins, and the trade is principally managed by their women, who are not only expert in making a bargain, but are as dexterous in
the management of their canoes, as the men are
After a period of nearly four months from our
leaving Nootka, we returned from the northward
to Columbia river, for the purpose of procuring
masts, &c. for our brig, which had suffered considerably in her spars during a gale of wind. We
proceeded about ten miles up the river, to a small
Indian village, where we heard from the inhabitants, that Captains Clark and Lewis,**'from the
United States of America, had been there about a
fortnight before, on their journey over-land, and
had left several medals with them, which they
showed us. The river at this place, is of considerable breadth, and both sides of it from its en-
trance, covered with forests of the very finest pine
tu§ft>er7 fir and spruce, interspersed with Indian 162
settlements. Here, after pro#ding ourselves with
spars, we sailed for Nootka, where we arrived in
the latter part of November. The tribe being absent, the agreed signal was given, by firing a cannon, and in a few hours after a canoe appeared,
which landed at the village, and putting the king
on shore, came off to the brig.-—Enquiry was immediately made by Kinneclimmets, who was one
of the three men in the canoe, if John was there,
as the king had some skins to sell them if he was.
I then went forward and invited them on board,
with which they readily complied, telling me that
Maquina had a number of skins with him, but that
he would not come on board unless I would go on
shore for him. This I agreed to, provided they
would remain in the brig in the mean time. To
this they consented, and the captain taking them
into the cabin, treated them with bread and molasses.
"I then went on shore in the canoe, notwithstanding-
the remonstrances of Thompson and the captain,
who, though he wanted the skins, advised me by
no means to put myself in Maquina's power; but I
assured him that I had no fear as long as those men*
were on board. As I landed Maquina came up
and welcomed me with much joy: on enquiring
for the men, I told him that they were to remain
till ray return. "Ah John,"said he, I see cc you
are afraid to trust me, but if they had come with
you, I should not have hurt you, though I should
have taken good care not to let you go on board
of another: vessJL" He then took his chest of
skins, and stepping into the canoe, I paddled him
along-side the brig, where he was received and
treated by Capt. Hill with the greatest cordialit|Ly
who bought of him his skins. He left us much
pleased with his reception, enquiring of me how jewitt's narrative.
many moons it would be before I should come
back again to see him and his son, who had begged him hard to let him come with him to see me:
saying, that he would keep all his fujrs for me, and
that as soon as my son, who was then about five
months old, was of a suitable age to take from his
mother, he would send for him, and take care of
him as his own.
As soon as Maquina had quitted us, we got under weigh, and stood again to the northward.
We continued on the coast until the eleventh of
August, 1806, when having completed our trade,
we sailed for China, to the great joy of all our
crew, and particularly so to me. With a degree
of satisfaction that I can ill express,* did I quit a
coast to which I was resolved nothing should again
tempi one to return, and as the tops of the mountains suBk in the blue waves of ocean, I seemed to
feel my heart lightened of an oppressive lpad.
We had a prosperous passage to China, arriving
at Macao in December, from whence the brig proceeded to Canton. There I had the good fortune
to meet a townsman and an old acquaintance, in
the mate of an English East-Indianian, named John
Hill, whose father, a wealthy merchant in Hull, in
the Baltic trade, was a next door neighbour to mine.
Shortly after our arrival, the captain being on
board the English ship, and mentioning his having
had the good fortune to liberate two men of the
Boston's crew from the savages, and that one of
them was named Jewitt, my former acquaintance
immediately came on board the brig too see me.
Words can- ill express my feelings on seeing
him. Circumstanced as I was, among persons
who were entire strangers to me, to meet thus in
a foreign land, with one between whom arid my-
m& 164
self, a considerable intimacy had subsisted, was a
pleasure that those alone who have been in a simu-
lar situation can properly estimate. He appeared
on his part, no less happy to see me, whom he
supposed to be dead, as the account of our capture
had been received in England som$ time before
his sailing, and all my friends supposed^me to have
been murdered. From this young man, I received
every attention and aid, that a feeling heart, interested in the fate of another,||could confer. He
supplied me with a new suit of clothes, and a hat,
a small sum of money for my necessary expences,
and a number of little articles for sea-stores on my
voyage to America. I also gave him a letter for
my father, in which I mentioned my wonderful
preservation, and escape, through the humanity of
captain Hill, with whom I should return to Boston. This let,ter he enclosed to his father, by a
ship that was just sailing, in consequence of which
it was received much earlier than it otherwise
would have been.
Arrival of tfie brig Lydia at Boston,
We left China in Februrary,  1807, and after a
pleasant voyage of one hundred and fourteen d£ys, JEWITT S   NARRATIVE.
arrived at Boston. My feelings on once more finding myself in a Christian country, among a people
speaking the same language with myself, may be
more readily conceived than expressed. In the
Post-Office in that place, I found a letter for me
from my mother, acknowledging the receipt of
mine from China, expressing the great joy of my
family on hearing of my being alive and well, whom
they had for a long time given up for dead, and
requesting me to write to them on receiving her letter, which I accordingly did. While in Boston,
I wTas treated with much kindness and hospitality
by the owners of the ship Boston, Messrs.
Francis and Thomas Amory of that place, to whom
I feel myself under great obligations for their
goodness to me, and the assistance which they so
readily afforded a stranger in distress.      # jetvitt's narrative.
Commencing ivith a chorus repeated at the end of
each line.x
Hah-yee hah yar har, he yar hah.
Ie yie ee yah har—ee yie hah. |>
Ie yar-ee yar hah—ee yar hah.
Ie yar ee I yar yar hah—Ie yar ee yee yah!
I-ye ma hi-chill at-sish Kla-ha—Ha-ye-hah.
Que nok ar parts-arsh waw—Ie yie-yar.
Waw-hoo naks sar hasch-^-Yar-hah. I-yar hee I-yar.
WawN hoo naks ar hasch yak-queets sish ni-ese,
Waw har.    Hie yee ah-hah.
Repeated over and over with gestures and brandishing of weapons.
.        'V       r |^   NOTE. ^ ' :W. '|:     • ,f|
Ie-yee ma hi-chill, signifies, Ye do not know. It appears to he a poetical mode of expression, the common
one for you do not know, being, Wik-kum-atash; from
this, it would seem that they have two languages, one
for their songs and another for common use. The
general meaning of this first son^ appears to be, Ye little know ye men of Klahar, whet valiant warriors, we
are. Poorly can our foes contend with us, when we
come with our daggers, &c.
The Nootkiansiiave no songs of a historical nature,
nor do they appear to have any tradition respecting
their origin.
THE   END.   J§S#!
■gg       ^  £\
mm  t fcS 1 m   Pill


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