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Account of the Russian discoveries between Asia and America : to which are added, the conquest of Siberia,… Coxe, William, 1747-1828 1804

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Array        w I e
AP<v/<> JC Stiund.  ACCOUNT
To which are added,
irt.*»i'Hin ,t**w*irrViii3&B&aNK*;-iTTK-m*?
l804,  TO
Cambridge^ March 27,178ft.  [  v   ]
THE firft edition of this work gave to tbe
public the earlieft account of the Ruffian
Difcoveries between Afia and America, which
were fo little known even to the Ruffians themfelves, that a tranflation was printed at St. Pe-
terfburgh. It commenced with the voyages
made by merchants fubfequent to Beering's expedition in 1740, and terminated with that of
Krenitzin and Levafhef in 1769.
The work being long out of print the author
was repeatedly urged to give a new edition, and
jto add thofe accounts which would render this
feries of voyages complete, from the earlieft attempts of Beering to the prefent time. The
reader will therefore find in this edition, a complete feries of voyages from 1711 to 1792, com-
priflng all that is known on the fubjecL Among
thefe additions are Steller's interefting Narrative
of Beering's fatal Expedition from Kamtchatka
to the Coaft of America; the Account of She-
lekof's Voyage and Settlement in Kadiak, and
the Voyages of Ifmaelof and Betfharof from
Kadiak to the Coaft of America.    Thefe narra-
a 3 tives* VI
tives, publifhed in the Neu'e Nordifche Bey-
traege by Pallas, in the German tongue, have
never before been fubmitted to the Engiifh
The author has alfo given abftraBs of Billing's
two voyages, from Mr. Sauer's narrative of the
expedition; and among the Supplementary
♦Accounts of the Ruffian Difcoveries is in-
ferted an abftract of Tfchitfchagof's Voyage
towards the North Pole, which is contained
in the Nordifche Beytraege, and for the firft
time given in an Engiifh drefs. This voyage is
the more curious as it was performed before the
expedition of Captain Phipps, and fully afcer-
tains the impracticability of penetrating into the
high northern latitudes.
By a careful examination the author has been
able to identify many of the difcoveries of the
Ruffians with thofe of our navigators, and to
clear up much of the obfcurity which has hitherto
enveloped this fubjecL To give place to thefe
additions he has excluded feveral conjectural
chapters relative to the vicinity of Afia and
America, and refpe&ing the longitude and latitude of the different places which fubfequent
difcoveries have rendered unneceffary. To
elucidate the whole, has given, with the affiftance of Mr. Arrowfmith, a new chart of the
Ruffian and Engiifh difcoveries in the North
Pacific Ocean.
PRE- [ vii 3
r" "^HE late Ruffian Difcoveries between Afia
•*- and America have, for fome time, engaged
the attention of the curious; more efpecially
fince Dr. Robertfon's admirable Hiftory o£
America has been in the hands of the public.
In that valuable performance the elegant and
ingenious author has communicated to the world,
with an accuracy and judgment which fo eminently diftinguifh all his writings, the moft exaQ:
information at that time to be obtained, concerning thofe important difcoveries. During
my ftay at Peterfburgb, my inquiries were particularly directed to this interefting fubjecl;, in order to learn if any new light had been thrown on
an article of knowledge of fuch confequence to
the hiftory of mankind. For this purpofe I en^
deavoured to collect, the refpecxive journals of
the feveral voyages fubfequent to the expedition
of Beering and Tfchirikof in 1741, with which
the celebrated Muller concludes his accunt of
the firft Ruffian navigations.
Durini Vlll
During my refearches I was informed that a
treatife in the German language, publifhed at
Hamburg and Leipfic in 3 776, contained a full
and exa£t. narrative of the Ruffian voyages, from
1745 to 1770 *,
But I fhould have paid little attention to the
anonymous publication, had I not been affured,
from very good authority, that it was compiled
from original journals. Not refting, however,
upon this intelligence, I took the liberty of applying to Mr. Muller himfelf, who, by order of
the Emprefs, had arranged the fame journals,
from which the anonymous author is faid to
have drawn his materials. Previous to my application, Mr. Muller had compared the treatife
with the original papers ; and he favoured me
with the following ftrong teftimony to its exacl-
nefs and authenticity: ** Vous feres bien de
If traduire pour l'ufage de vos compatriotes .le
" petit livre fur les ifles fitues entre le Kamt-
" chatka et l'Amerique. II n'y a point de
u doute, que Pauteur n'ait ete pourvu de bons
*? memoirs, et qu'ilne s'en foit fervi fidelement.
" J'ai confronte le livre avec les originaux.'*
Supported by this very refpe&aWe authority, I
i The title of the book is, Neue Nachrichten von denen
^"euendeckten Insuln in der See zvvischen Asia und Amerika
aus mit&etheilten Urkunden und Auszue^en verfasset von
h I s,
confldered this treanfe as a performance of the
higheft credi\ and we'll worthy of being more
generally known and perufed, and I have there-
fore in the firft part of the prefent publication,
fubmitted a tranflation of it to the reader's candour ; adding occafional notes to thofe paflages
which feemed to require explanation. The original is divided into fections without any references ; but as it feemed more convenient to divide it into chapters ,• and to accompany each
chapter with a fummary of the contents, and
marginal references; I have moulded it into that
form, without making, however, any alteration in
the order of the journals.
The additional intelligence which I procured
at Peterfburg is thrown into a Second Part: it
confifts of fome new information, and of three
journals *, never before given to the public.
Amongft thefe I moft particularly mention that
of Krenitzin and Levafhef, which, together with
the chart of their voyage, was communicated to
Dr. Robertfon, by order of the Emprefs of
Ruffia ; and which that juftly admired hiftorian
has, in the politeft and moft obliging manner,
permitted me to make ufe of in this collection.
* The journal of Krenitzin and Levashef, the short account of Synd's voyage, and the narrative of Shalaurof 's expedition, Part II. Chapters I. VII. VIII,
This voyage, which redounds greatly to the honour of the fovereign who planned it, confirms
in general the authenticity of the work which I
have tranflated, and afcertains the difcoveries
made by the private merchants.
*f *
As a further illuftration of this fubject, I collected the beft charts which could be procured at
Peterfburg, of which a lift will be given in the
following advertifernent. From all thefe circumftances, I may venture, perhaps, to hope
that the curious and inquifitive reader will not
©nly find in the following pages the moft authentic account of the progrefs and extent of the
Ruffian difcoveries, which has hitherto appeared
in any language; but be enabled hereafter to
compare them with thofe more lately made by
that great and much to be regretted navigator,
Captain (looke, when his journal fhall be communicated to the public.
As all the furs which are brought from the
new-difcovered iflands are fold to the Chinefe,
I was naturally led to make enquiries concerning the commerce between Ruffia and China;
and finding this branch of traffic much more important than is commonly imagined, I thought
that a general fketch of its prefent ftate, together
with a fuccincl: view of the tranfa&ions between
the two nations, would not be unacceptable.
The conqueft of Siberia, as it firft opened a
communication with China, and led to all the
fubfequent difcoveries defcribed in this volume,
will not appear unconnected, I truft, with its
principal defign.
The materials of this fecond part, as alfo of
the preliminary obfervations concerning Kamtchatka, and the commerce to the New-difcovered
Iflands, are drawn from books of eftablifhed and
* undoubted reputation. Mr. Muller and Mr.
Pallas, from whofe interefting works thefe hifto-
rical and commercial fubjects are chiefly com-,
piled, are too well known in the literary world to
require any other vouchers for their judgment,
exaclnefs, and fidelity, than the bare .mention of
their names. I have only further to apprize t^e
reader, that, befides the intelligence extracted
from thefe publications, he will find fome additional circumftances relative to the Ruffian commerce with China, which I collected during my
continuance in Ruffia.
I cannot clofe this addrefs to the reader with-
| out embracing with peculiar fatisfaction the juft
occafion, which the enfuing treatifes upon the
Ruffian difcoveries and commerce afford me, of
joining with every friend of fcience in the warm-
eft admiration of that enlarged and liberal fpirit,
which fo ftrikingly marks the character of jhe
prefent Emprefs of Ruffia.    Since her accef-
fion to the throne, the inveftigation of ufeful
knowledge has been the conftant obje6t of her
generous encouragement. The authentic records of the Ruffian hiftory, have, by her exprefs orders, been properly arranged ; and permiflion to infpecl: them is readily granted. The
*noft diftant parts of her vaft dominions have, at
her expence, been explored and defcribed by
perfons of great abilities and extenfive learning ;
by which means new and important lights have
been thrown upon the geography and natural
hiftory of thofe remote regions. In a word,
this truly great princefs has contributed more,
in the compafs of only a few years, towards civilizing and informing the minds of her fubjefts,
than had been effected by all the fovereigns her
predeceffors fince the glorious sera of Peter th«
March 27,1780,
Of some Russian Words made use of in the follow^-
ing Work.
Baidar, a small boat.
Guba, a bay.
Kamen, a rock.
Kotche, a vessel.
Krepost, a regular fortress.
Noss, a cape.
Oslrog, a fortress surrounded with palisadoes.
Ostroff, an island.
Ostrova, islands.
Quass, a sort of fermented liquor.
Reka, a river.
The Russians in their proper names of persons,
make use of patronymics; these patronymics are
formed in some cases by adding Fitch to the christian name of the father; in others Off" or Eff; the
former termination is applied only to persons of
condition ; the latter to those of an inferior rank.
As, for instance,
Among persons) ) Ivan the son
~e «««.k«.-        rlvah Ivanovitch, r      r t
or condition -) ')    or Ivan.
Of inferior rank, Ivan Ivanoff,
Michael Alexievitch,) Michael  the
Michael Alexeeff,     .) son of Alexey.
Sometimes a surname is added, Ivan Ivanovitch
'Of Russian Weights, Measures of Length, and
Value of Money.
A pood weighs 40 Russian poods—36 English.
Sixteen vershocks—an arsheen.
An arsheen—28 inches.
Three arsheens, or seven feet,—a fathom*, or
Five hundred sazshens—a verst.
A degree of longitude comprises 104f versts—6g§
English miles. A mile is therefore 1,515 parts
of a verst; two miles may then he estimated
equal to three versts, omitting a small fraction*
A rouble—100 copecs; its value varies according
to the exchange from 3s. 8d. to 4s. 2d. Upon
an average, however, the value of a rouble is
throughout this work, reckoned at four shillings f.    : |p. __ . 'M'   ■ -.m:   +   \      '
* The fathom for measuring the depth of water is th»,
same as the English fathom,—6 feet.
I The yalue of a rouble (1803) is-only 2s. 6d. CONTENTS,
Preliminary Observations concerning
1. L^IscovERY"and Conquest of Kamtchatka—Present
State—Government—Population —Tribute—Volcanoes - Page 1
2. General Idea of the Commerce carried on to the New-
jjggcovered   Islands—Equipment   of the   Vessels—
Risks of the Trade, Profits, &c. - 10
3. Furs and Skins procured from Kamtchatka and  the
xNew-discovered   Islands — Sea-Otters — Different
Species of Foxes - - - 13
Account of the Russian Discoveries.
Period i—1711 to 1741.
From the Conquest of Kamtchatka to the Conclusion of
Beering's and Tchirikof's Expeditions.
1. Origin of the Russian Discoveries—Voyage of Beering towards the Northern Ocean - 21
•2. Steller's Journal of Beerinsf's Voyage of Discovery
from  Kamtchatka   to  the Coast of America, in
'A   ^1741      '■'"'%     /I- - -   ; 30
Sect. 1. Departure   from   Kamtchatka—Discovery
A */
of America—Description of the Coast—Account of
an Island on which Steller landed—Animal, vegetable, and marine Productions—Indisposition of
Beering, and Insubordination of the Crew—Return towards Kamtchatka—Incidents of the Voyage
—Distresses of the Crew - -     page 33
Sect. 2. Remarks on S teller's Narrative, and Conjectures relative to the Parts of America touched
at by Beering and Tchelekof 94
Account of the Russian Discoveries.
From 1741 to 1778.
1. Conquest of Siberia—Commencement of the New Dis
coveries—Their Progress—Encouraged by the Empress—Position of the New-discovered Islands   ifJ3
2. Voyages in  1745—First   Discovery of tlfe Aleutian
Isles by Michael Ne^e^s^kof    - - 112
3. Successive Voyages from  1747 to 1753, to Beering's
and Copper Island, antt-to the Aleutian Isles—
Voyage of Emilian Yugof—Of the Boris and Glebb
—Of Andrew Tolstvlf to the Aleutitn Isles, 1749
—Voyage of Vorchief, 1750—Of Novikof and
Baccofyfeom Anadyrsk—Shijjfrreck upon Beering's
Island—Voyage, of Durnef, in the St. Nicholas,
1754—Narrative of the Voyage—Description of
-jtfee. Aleutian \ls|e$—^m^jkccottnt of ,the Inhabitants - 119
Voyages from 1753 to 1756.
4.* Kolodilof's Ship sails from Kamtchatka, 1753—Departure of Serebranikof's Vessel—Shipwrecked
upon one of the distant Islands—Account of the
Inhabitants—The Crew . construct another Vessel
and return to Kamtchatka—Departure of Krassil-
nikof's Vessel—Shipwrecked upon Copper Island
—The Crew reach Beering's Island in two Baidars
- Page 130
5. Voyages from 1756 to 1/58—Voyage of Andrean Tol-
styk in 1756 to the Aleutian Isles—Voyage of Ivan
Shilkin in the Capiton, 1757—Shipwrecked upon
one of the Fox Islands—Thfe Crew construct a
small Vessel, and are again Shipwrecked    1   * 136*
6. Voyages in 1758, 1759? and 1760—to the Fox Islands
—in the St. Vlodimir, fitted out by Trapesnikof,
and commanded by Paikof, 1758—and in the Gabriel, by Betshevin—Account of the Inhabitants of
Alaksu or Alachskak—Voyage of the Peter and
Paul to the Aleutian Islands, 1759    -       -      142
7' Voyage of Andrean Tolstyk in the St. Andrean and
Natalia, 1760—Discovery of some new; Islands
called Andreanofskie Ostrova—-Description of six
of those Islands—Account of the Inhabitants—
The Vessel wrecked upon the Coast of Kamtchatka
"- - - - - 151
S. Voyage of the Zacharias and Elizabeth, fitted out by
Kulkoff, and commanded by Drusinin, 1762—-They
sail to Umnak, and to Unalashka, where they winter
—The Vessel destrdyed; and all the Crew mur-,
dered by the Islanders, except four—Their Adventures and wonderful Escape     - - 159
b 2 9. Voy %x
9. Voyage of the Vessel called the Trinity, under the
Command of Korovin, 1762—Winters at Una-
lashka—Puts to Sea in the Spring—Stranded in a
. Bay of the Island Umnak, and the Crew attjfeked
by the Natives—Many of t^hem killed - Others carried offi by Sickness—Are reduced to great Streights
—Relieved by Glottof, twelve of the whole Company
only remaining—Description of Umnak and Una-
lashka - and Account of the Inhabitants,   page 168
10. Voyage ot Stephen Glottof in the Andrean and Natalia, 1762—He reaches the Fox Islands.—Sails
beyond Unalashka to Kadyak—Winters on that.
Island—Repeated Attempts of the Natives to* destroy the Crew—They are repulsed, reconciled, and
prevailed on to trade with the Russians—Account
of Kadyak—Its Inhabitants—Animals—Productions
—Glottof sails back to Umnak—Winters there—Returns to Kamtchatka—Journal of his Voyage,   185
1.1. Voyage of Solovioi in the St. Peter and Paul, 1764
—He passes two Winters upon Unalashka—Attempts of the Natives to destroy the Crew—Return of Soloviof to Kamtchatka—Journal of his
Voyage—Description of the Islands Umnak and Unalashka—Productions—Inhabitants—Their Manners
—Customs, &c. &c.      - - - ^OS
12. Voyage  of Otcheredin   in the St Paul,   1765—He
winters on Umnak—Arrival of Levasheff upon Una-
lasnka—Return of Otcheredin to Ochotsk   -    231
13. Conclusion—General  Position and  Situation of the
Aleutian and Fox Islands—Further Description of
the Dress, Manners, and Customs of the Inhabitants
—Their Feasts and Ceremonies - 238
14. Voyage of Captain Krenitzin and Lieutenant Levashef,
to the Fox Islands in 1768 and 1769—Krenitzin
winters Chap.
winters at Alashka, Levashef upon Unalashka-*"
Productions of Unalasltka—Description of the Inhabitants of the Fox Islands - - page 248
15. Voyage of Lieutenant Synd, to the North-East of Siberia—He discovers a Cluster of Islands, and a
Promontory, which he supposes to belong to the
Continent of America,- lying near the Coast of the
Account of the Russian Discoveries.   -
From 1778 to the Termination of the Voyage of BiHings
in 1792.
.1. Narrative of Shelekof's Voyage to Kadiak, from 1783
to 1787-- Sails from Okotsk to Kadiak—Attacked by the Konaghi—Succeeds, in terrifying them
by the Effects of Fire-arms—-Forms a Settlement-
Other Engagements with the Natives—Conciliates
their Affection—The Party afflicted by the Scurvy
—Expeditions to the neighbouring Islands, attd the
Coast of America—Description of the Climate-
Returns—Destination of the two Vessels during his
Absence—Reaches Bolcherretsk—Arrival of an English Slpp in the Port of St. Peter and St. Paul-
Proceeds to Irkutsk—General Account ot the Inhabitants and Productions of the Islands, and of
tl*e American Coasts      - -   267, 269
2. Voy- ¥
•jqtil / CONTENTS.
2. Voyage of Ismaelof and Betsharoff—Tduch at Kadiak
—See Suklia or Montague Island—Enter Prince
William's Sound—Anchor in Nutcheek Bay or
Port Etches—Transactions—Visited by Nekshtflfe
Atascha, a native Chief-—Description of the Animals
and Productions of the Bay of Tchugatsk, or Prince
""William's Sound      - - page 302
3. Quit Prince William's Sound—Steer to the Island At-
chaka, or Vancouver's Middleton's Island—Kill
a. CJiief who "attempted to assassinate one of the
Russians—Sail to Koiac or Kaye's Island—Description—Proceed along the American Coast—Visited
by the Natives—Anchor in the Bay of Yakutat,
or Port Mulgrave—Description of the Dwellings,
Manners, &c. of the Inhabitants—Visited by the
Chief Ilchack - - - 313
4. Quit  the Bay of Yakutat—Sail along  the Coast-
Explore the River Ralco—Enter the Bay of Ltoua,
probably Portlock's Harbour—Visited by a native
Chief—Discover an Anchor which had been lost:
by an European Ship—Description of the Bay of
Ltoua—Lose an Anchor—Quit the Bay—Reach
Kadiak * 333
5. Additional Remarks on the Russian Settlement in Kadiak,
from Vancouver - - - 344
6. Voyage of Discovery made by Captain Billings, from
1785 to 1794—Departure from Kamtchatka—
Touches at Kadiak—Account of Shelekof s Establishment—Reaches Prince William's Sound—■* Error
concerning the Position of Cape St. Elias—Kaye's
Island—Return to Kamtchatka—Second Expedition
—Passes the Chain of Aleiitian Islands to Unalashka
—Sails t© the Bay of St. Laurence—Traverses the
Country of the Tchutski—The Ships return to and
winter Chap.
winter at Unalashka—-Distresses of the Crews-
Account of the Inhabitants, and the Mode of carrying on the Russian Trade—Final return to Kamt
page 3&9
Supplementary Account of the Russian
1. Attempts of fhe Russians to discover a  North-East
Passage—Voyages from Archangel towards tae
Lena—From the Lena towards Kamtchatka—Extract from Miller's Aeeotmt of Deshneff's Voyage
found Tschukotskoi Ness—Narrative of a Voyage
made by Shalauroff from the Lena to Shelatskoi
Noss - 366
2. Expedition of CaptainvBillings mtb the Frozen Ocean,
from the Mouth of the Kovyma - 394
3. Attempt of Tchitsehagof to discover a Nori&-East Pas-
sage=r—Stopped by the Ice—Winters in Bell Sound—
Endeavours to force a Passage round Spitzbergen—
Returns— His Remarks ononis Navigation—Second
Voyage - 398
4. Concluding Remarks on the Discoveries of Vancouver,
an& the Desiderat-a in- the Geography of these Regions - - - * 408
PART xxir
if ■
Conquest of Siberia.
1. Irruptions of the Russians into Siberia—Exploits and
Progress 6f Yermac—Defeats Kutchum Chan—
Conquers his Dominions—Receives a Reinforcement
of Russian Troops—His Defeat and Death—Veneration paid to his Memory—Russian Troops evacuate Siberia—Re-enter and conquer the whole
Country—Their Progress stopped by the Chinese
- - - - page 417
Transactions betz&een Russia and China.
2. Commencement of Hostilities between  the Russians
and Chinese—Disputes concerning the Limits of
the two Empires—Treaty of Nershinsk—Embassies
from the Court of Russia to Pekin—Treaty of
Kiakta—Establishment of the commercial Intercourse between the two Nations - 435
3. Account of the Russian and Chinese Settlements on
the Confines of Siberia—Description of the Russian
frontier Town Kiakta—of the, Chinese frontier Town
Maimatschin—its Buildings, Pagodas, &c,   -    448
4. Commerce between  the Chinese and  Russians—List
of the principal Exports and Imports—Duties—
Average Amount of the Russian Trade -    466
5. Description of Zurukaitu—and its Trade—Transport
of the Merchandise through Siberia      - 477
6. Tartarian Rhubarb brought to -Kiakta by the Bucha
rian Merchants—Method of examining and purchasing the Roots—Different Species of Rheum
which yield t!Te finest Rhubarb—Price of Rhubarb
in Russia—Exportation—Superiority of the Tartarian over the Indian Rhubarb - 482
Difcovery and Conquejl of Kamtchatka—Prefent
HE PeF$g{ula of Kamtchatka was difqpv-
ered by the Ruffians the latter end of the feven-
teenth century. The fijrft expe^tion was made in
thefe latitudes in 1696, by fixteen Coffacs, under
the command of Lucas Semaenof Morofko, who
was fent againft-the Koriacs of the river Opooka
by Vloditpir Atlaffof commander of Anadirfk.
Morofko penetrated wit&in four days journey
of the river Kajp&ichatka, and returned t<^ Anadirfk*, after exacting tribute from a {ingle village.
In the following year Atlaffof,at the head
pf a larger body, penetrated into the Peninfula, took poffeffion of the river Kamtchatka
S, R, G. V. 3. p. 72.
by mill H iihr~TffiiVinifa5iiHnTfifnnfflK1
by erecting a crofs upon its banks, and built
fome huts upon the fpot, where the Upper
Oftrog now Hands.
Thefe expeditions were continued during feveral years: Upper and Lower Kamtchatkoi
Oftrogs and Bolcheretfk were built, the Southern diitricl: conquered and colonifed, and in
1711 the whole Peninfula was reduced under
the Ruffian dominion.
During fome years the poffeflion of Kamtchatka brought little advantage to the crown,
except a fmall tribute of furs exafted from, the
inhabitants. The Ruffians indeed occafionally
hunted foxes, wolves, ermines, fables, and other
animals, whofe valuable fkins form an important
article of commerce among the Eaftern nations.
But the far trade was inconfiderable, until the
Ruffians difcovered the iflands between Afia
and America. Since thefe difcoveries, the variety of rich furs, procured from thofe iflands,
has greatly increafed the trade of Kamtchatka,
and rendered it an important branch of Ruffian
The Peninfula of Kamtchatka lies between
51 and 62 degrees of North latitude, and,i72°
and 186° of longitude from the ifle of Fero;
or Weft from Greenwich. It is bounded on the
Eaft and South by the fea of Kamtchatka, on
the Weft by the feas of Okotik and Penfhinfk,
and  on   the   North  by   the   country of  the
It is divided into four diftri&s, Bolcheretfk,
Tigilfkaia Krepoft, Verchnei or Upper Kamtchatkoi Oftrog, and Nifhnei or Lower Kamtchatkoi Oftrog. The government is veiled
in the chancery of Bolcheretfk, which depends
upon the chancery of Ochotfk. The whole
Ruffian force, ftationed in the Peninfula, con-
lifted in 1777, of no more than three hundred
The prefent population of Kamtchatka
amounts to fcarce four thoufand fouls. Formerly the inhabitants were more numerous;
but in 1768, the fmall-pox, carried off five
thoufand three hundred and fixty-eight perfons*
In 1776 there were only feven hundred and fix
males in the whole Peninfula who were tributary,
and an hundred and fourteen in the Kuril Ifles,
which are fubjecl: to Ruffia.
The fixed annual tribute confifted of 279
fables, 464 red foxes, 50 fea-otters, with a dam,
and 38 cub fea-otters. All furs exported from
Kamtchatka pay a duty of 10 per cent, to the
crown: the tenth of the cargoes brought from
the new-difcovered iflands is alfo delivered into
the cuftoms.
Journal of St. Petersburg for April 1777.
B 2 Many SI,iE!
Many traces of volcanoes have been obferved
in this Peninfula 5 and fome mountains are ftill
in a burning ftate. The moft confiderable of
thefe volcanos is fituated near the Lower Oftrog.
In 1762 a great noife was heard within the
mountain, and flames of fire burft from different
parts. Thefe flames were immediately fuc-
ceeded by a large ftream of melted fnow-water,
which flowed into the neighbouring valley, and
drowned two Kamtchadals, who were upon a
hunting party. The afhes, and other combuftible
matter, thrown from the mountain, fpread to the
circumference of two hundred miles. In 1767
there was another difcharge, but lefs confiderable. Every night flames were obferved iffuing
from the mountain, and the eruption, which attended them, did no fmall damage to the inhabitants of the Lower Oftrog. Since that year
no flames have been feen j but the mountain
emits a conftant fmoke. The fame phenomenon
was obferved upon another mountain, called
The face of the country is chiefly mountainous. It produces in fome parts birch, poplars,
alders, willows, underwood, and berries, of different forts. Many vegetables are raifed with
great facility; fuch as white cabbage, turnips,
r'adifhes, beet-root, carrots, and: cucumbers.
Agriculture is  in a low ftate, which is chiefly
owing to the nature of the foil and the fevere
hoar frofts; for notwithftanding various attempts
to cultivate^oats, barley, and rye, no crop has ever
been fufficiently productive to anfwer the labour
and expence* Hemp however has been recently
cultivated with great fuccefs*.
Every year a veffel, belonging to the crown,
fails from Okotfk to Kamtchatka, laden with
fait, provifions, com, and Ruffian manufactures;
and returns in June or July the following year
with fkins and furs.
Additions to the Account of Kamtchatka.
The three divifions of Tygil, Nifhni, and
Virchin, were each commanded by a ferjeant,
and Bolcheretsk was the refidence of the commander in chief and his affiftant, who were
dependant on the chancery of Ochotsk. In
1783, the Emprefs removed the feat of government, from Bolcheretfk to Nifhni Kamtchatka, under the name of a city, eftablifhing a
military commandant of the rank of lieutenant
colonel, and a court of juftice for civil and criminal caufes, (called Bemfkoi Sud) the prefident
of which muft go once a year round the peninfula, to keep order and decide trivial difputes,
* Journal of-St. Petersburg,
alfo to recover tribute. He was alfo the Capstan Ifpravnick, a magiftracy of which all the
members were merchants, and prefided over
commerce and trade.
In 1787, Kozloff Ugrinin, commandant of
Okotfk, vifited Kamtchatka, and divided it into two diftri&s, Nifhni and Petropaoloffki, the
former comprehending Virfhni and Tygil, the
latter the harbour and Bolcheretfk. The whole
force confifted in 1793, in only about 300 Coffacs. An application was made for as many
more, which was probably granted.
The rivers are the Kamtchatka, the greateft,
and in fact the only one that deferves the name,
winding   in   a  fouthern  direction   to   Nifhni,
where it turns eaftward, and falls into the fea of
Kamtchatka, in the latitude 560.    Its courfe is
about 800 verfts, 500 of which  it is navigable
in fmall veffels.    The aeftuary is full of fhifting
banks, and very fhallow;  the water is  clear,
and  the  river abounds with the fineft  fifh :
falmon of different forts, falmon trout, and trout,
and immenfe fhoals of herrings afcend to Nifhni in May and Oftober.    The fecond river is
Byftria. which rifes clofe to the fource of the
Kamtchatka, and flows to the fouth.    It is only
navigable in fmall boats 30 verfts upwards from
Bolcheretfk: here it is joined with the Natfkike,
and bears the name of the Bolfhoi Reka.    It
falls into the bay of Whekafka, in the fea of
Ochotfk. The Natfkike flows no verfts in a
direction nearly weft. In the fame mountain
rifes the Avatfha, which, after a courfe of 70
verfts, enters the bay of Avatfha, 12 verfts weft
of Petropauloffky. The Paratounka takes a
circuitous courfe of about 70 verfts from the
vicinity of the Villuitfh, and flows into the N, W.
extremity of the bay of Avatfha, only 5 miles
from its fource. It is navigable at high-water
for fmall boats to the village of Paratounka, only
6 verfts from its mouth. Numberlefs rivulets
flow into the fea of Ochotfk, but except the Bol-
fhoi Reka, the Tygil and Itfha are the moft
confiderable, and their fources are only 40 verfts
from the fea.
The volcanoes are, Klutfhieffky, 80 verfts
from Nifhni, up the river Kamtchatka. On the
20th of November, 1789, a great rumbling noife,
with a fmart fhock of an earthquake, preceded a
violent eruption of fmall ftones, afhes, and
flames, which continued, with daily fhocks, until
the 21ft of February, 1790. From the information of Captain Billings, the city was illuminated by the flame. The afhes were fcattered
800 verfts from the mountain, and at half that
diftance fo thickly as to prevent travelling in
fledges. Auguft 21ft, 1792, about five in the
morning, a fudden explofion of large ftones and
B 4 afhes iSm
afhes was immediately followed by a dreadfei
earthquake, continuing with aftonifhing violence
three quarters of an hour. It was felt through
the whole peninfula, even to Bolcheretfk, where
its duration was only a few feconds. All the
brick ovens and chimnies Were thrown doWn at
Nifhni, and the people in confternation crawled over the bed of the river Raduga, which was
dry for half an hour, to the mountains.
Shaeveiutfh, a volcano, eighty verfts north of
Klutshevfky. from which fmoke fometimes if-
fues. Tolbatfh, or Tolbatfhuifk, 200 verfts
fouth of Klutfheffkoi, conftantly emits fmoke ©n
the north fide near the fummit, and along a
ridge which feems to unite it to the northern
chain. Avatfha, or Avatfhinfk, 40 verfts to the
north-eaftward of the harbour of St. Peter and
Paul, or Petropauloffki. In 1785 was a violent eruption, and a confiderable part of the
fummit fell in; and in 1799,another covered the
neighbourhood for many miles with afhes and
pumice-ftone. Conftant fmoke iffues from the
fummit, particularly in wet weather. Ozernoi
Sopka (Yavina, by the Kamtchadals) on the Lo-
patka, about 60 verfts from the fouth point of
the peninfula, began burning in 1792. The
neighbouring vallies abound in hot fprings. Vil-
lutfh, called by Cook Paratounka Sopka, is anex-
tinguifhed volcano*    Alaid, a lofty mountain, of
fugar-loaf form, rifing out of the fea, twelve
miles weft of the fouth point of Kamtchatka,
burnt violently in 1792.
allot fprings are found all over the peninfula.
Two villages on the river Kamtchatka, are
inhabited by a fmall colony of Ruffian peafants;
the one is 15 verfts below Virfhni,,the other at
the fort of Klutfheffky mountain.
Rye is here cultivated; but the ground would
probably produce wheat. The farmers are very
few in number, fubject to heavy taxes, feverely
treated by people in office, and find a greater
profit in felling liquors to the hunting Kamtcha-
dals, than they would obtain from agriculture;
they grow juft fufficient for their own provifion,
and are employed as pedlars and hawkers by
the merchants refiding at Ochotfk; moft of
them are (Meftfhanins) privileged traders, for
jwhich they pay a ftipulated fum to the magif-
All garden vegetables are raifed with great
facility; potatoes, cabbages, turnips, radifhes,
beet-root, carrots, Sec.; falads of all kinds; the
foil is very good.
Two tranfport veffels belonging to the crown,
fail from Ochotfk every year; one to Tygil, the
other to Nifhni Kamtchatka; the latter generally calls at Petropaoloffkoi, as does the former
fome* io
fometimes at Bolfheretfk § they carry fait, provifions, flour, and manufactures; and return if
fuccefsful, the fame year with tribute, a few furs,
and faked falmon, particularly the fpecies called
V Wh !
General idea of the commerce carried on to the
New-difcovered Iflands—Equipment of the
veffels—Rijks of the trade, profits^ &c.
INCE the conclufion of Beering's voyage,,
which was made at the expence of the
crown, the profecution of the New Difcoveries
begun by him has been almoft entirely carried
on by individuals. Thefe perfons were principally merchants of Irkutfk, Yaktufk, and other
natives of Siberia, who formed themfelves into
fmall trading companies, and fitted out veffels at
their joint expence.
Moft of the veffels equipped for thefe expeditions are two-mafted, commonly built without
iron, and in general fo badly conftru&ed, that
they appear ill calculated to weather fo ftormy a
fea. They are called in Ruffian Shitiki, or fewed
veffels, because the planks are fewed together
with thongs of leather. Some few are built in the
river of Kamtchatka; but they are for the moft
part conftru&ed at the haven of Okotfk. The
largeft are manned with feventy men, and the
fmalleft with forty. The crew generally confifts
of an equal number of Ruffians and Kamtcha-
dals. The Kamtchadals occafion a confiderable
faving, as their pay is fmall; they are alfo lefs
fubject to the fcurvy. But as Ruffian mariners
are more enterprifing, and more to be depended
upon in time of danger, a proportion of them is
unavoidably neceflary.
The expences of building and fitting out the
veffels are confiderable : for there is nothing at
Okotfk but timber for their conftru£tion. Cordage, fails, and fome provifions, muft be brought
from Yakutfk upon horfes. The dearnefs of
corn and flour, which muft be tranfported from
the diftri&s lying about the river Lena, renders
it difficult to lay-in any large quantity for the
fubfiftence of the crew during a voyage, which
commonly lafts three or four years. For this
reafon^no more is provided than is neceflary to
fupply the Ruffian mariners with quafs and
other fermented liquors.
From the  great  fcarcity   of cattle  both at
Okotfk and * Kamtchatka little provifion is laid
* In 1772, there were only 570 head of cattle upon the
whole Peninsula.    A cow sold from 50 to 60 roubles, an ox
from 12
111*: .
11* •
a Mm
;1 «t3''
in at either of thofe places: but the crew provide themfelves with the flefh of fea animals,
which are caught and cured upon Beering's
Ifland, where the veffels for the moft part winter.
The equipment of each veffel ordinarily colts
from 15,000 to 20,000 roubles; and fometimes
the expences amount to 30,000. Every veffel
is divided into a certain number of fhares, generally from thirty to fifty; and each fhare is
worth from 300 to 500 roubles.
The rifk of the trade is great, as fhipwrecks
are common in the rocky and tempeftuous fea
of Kamtchatka: the crews are alfo frequently
furprifed and killed by the iflanders, and the
veffels deftroyed. In return, the profits are
confiderable, and compenfate the inconvenien-
cies and dangers. On an advantageous voyage,
the gain at the moft moderate computation
amounts to cent, per cent, and frequently to as
much more. Should the veffel be capable of
performing a fecond expedition, the expences
are confiderably leffened; and the profits of
courfe increafed.
Some notion of the general profits arifing from
from .60 to 100. A pound of fresh beef sold upon an average for 12f copecs. The excessive. dearness of this price
will be easily conceived, when it is known, that at Moscow
a pound of beef sells far about three copecs,—Journ. St.
this trade may be deduced from the fale of a rich
cargo of furs, brought to Kamtchatka, on the 2d
of June, 1772, from the New-difcovered iflands,
in a veffel belonging to Ivan Popof.
The tenth part of the fkins being delivered to
the cuftoms, the remainder was divided in fifty*
five fhares. Each fhare confifted of twenty fea-
ottser, fixteen black and brown foxes, ten red
foxes, three fea-otter tails, and produced from
800 to 1000 roubles; fo that according to this
price the whole lading was worth about 50,000
Furs and fkins procured from Kamtchatka and the
New - difcovered Iflands—Sea - Otters*—Different fpecies of foxes.
THE principal furs and fkins procured from
the Peninfula of Kamtchatka and the New-
difcovered iflands are fea-otters, foxes, fables,
ermines, wolves, bears, Sec.—Thefe furs are
tranfported to Okotfk by fea, and from thence
carried to f Kiafta upon the frontiers of Siberia;
* Georgi Reise, torn. 1. p. 23, & seq. Journal of St.
f See the account of Kiacta.
where u
where the greater part is fold td the Chinefe at a
confiderable profit.
The fkins of the fea-otters are the richeft and
moft valuable. Thofe animals refort in great
numbers to the Aleutian and Fox Iflands : they
are called by the Ruffians Bohri Morfki, or
fea-beavers, and fometimes Kamtchadal beavers,
on account of the refemblance of their fur to
that of the common beaver. From thefe cir*
cumftances feveral authors have fuppofed this
animal to be of the beaver fpecies; whereas it is
the true fea-otter *. The females are called
Matka, or dams; and the cubs, till five months
old, Medviedki, or little bears, becaufe their
coat refembles that of a bear; they lofe that
coat after five months, and then are called
The fineft fort of fur is thick and long, of a
dark colour, and a fine gloffy hue. Thefe fea-
otters are taken by ftriking them with harpoons
as they fleep on their backs in the fea, hunting
them down in boats, furprifing them in caverns,
or taking them in nets.
Their fkins bear different prices, according
to their quality.
* S. R. G. 3. p. 530. For a description of the sea-
otter, Lutra Marina, called by Linnaeus Mustek Lutris,
see Nov. Comm. Pet. V. 2. p. 367, &c.
*d :■ . "P   . ".ill CONCERNING KAMTCHATKA.
At Kamtchatka * the best fell
per fkin from    -   -    30 to 40 roubles.
Middle fort    20 to 30
Worft fort     15 to 25.
At Kiacta f the old and middle-
aged fea-otter fkins are fold to
the Chinefe per fkin from 80 to 140
The worft fort 30 to 40.
As thefe furs bear fo great a price among
the Chinefe, they are feldom brought into Ruffia
for fale; and feveral, which have been carried
to Mofcow as a tribute, were purchafed for 30
roubles per fkin; and fent from thence to the
1 Journ. St. Petersburg.
Prices of furs at Kamtchatka, in 1793.
Sables, 2f to 10, 15 and 20 roubles each.
Fox skins, fire red (Ognefka) 15 roubles.
Common red, 3 to 5 roubles.
Black continental, 50 to 80 roubles.!
From the islands,   10 to 15.
Wolf, 8 to 16 roubles.
Hare skins, 10 to 15 roubles.
Ermin, 10 to 15 roubles.
Stone fox Pestsi, 30 copecs to 1 rouble.
Sea-otter skins from the Kuril Islands, 300 to 400 roubles.
From America,    - -   100 to 250. .
The mos^ valuable furs are always brought to Kazan and
Moscow* and sold to the Armenians and Greeks.
f Pallas Reise, part 3, p. 137*
Chinefe WfcZ-
:■ /■'.<■ -•> •
Chinefe. frontiers, where they were difpofed of
at a great profitf.
Several fpecies of fox fkins are fent from
Kamtchatka into Siberia and Ruffia. Of thefe
the principal are the black foxes, the Peffi or
Arctic foxes, the red and ftone foxes.—The
fineft black foxes are caught in different parts of
Siberia, and more commonly in the Northern regions between the Rivers Lena, Indigirka, and
Kovyma: the black foxes found upon the. remoter!. Eaftern iflands difcovered by the Ruffians,
or the Lyffie Oftrova, are not fo valuable.
They are very black and large ; and the coat is
ufually as coarfe as that of a wolf. The great
difference in the finenefs of the fur, between
thefe foxes and thofe of Siberia, arifes probably from the following circumftances. In the
iflands the cold is not fo fevere as in Siberia;
and, as there is no wood, the foxes live in holes
and caverns of the rocks; whereas in Siberia
there are large tracls of forefts in which they
find fhelter. Some black foxes, however, which
are otcafionally caught in the diftant iflands, not
wholly deftitute of wood, are of great value. In
general the Chinefe, who pay the moft for black
furs, do not give more for the black foxes of
the New-difcovered iflands than from 20 to 30
roubles per fkin.
t S.R. G. V. 3 .Pallas Reise.
The Arfitic or ice foxes are very common
upon fome of the New-difeovered Iflands.
They are called PeJIJi by the Ruffians, and by
the Germans, blue foxes*. Their natural colour is an afh or bluifh-grey j but they change
their coat at different ages, and in different fea-
fons. In general they are born brown, become
white in winter, and brown again in fummer;
in fpring and autumn, as the hair gradually falls
, off, the coat is marked with different fpecks and
At Kia&at the feveral varieties fell upon an
average to the Chinefe, per fkin from 50 copecs
to   -       -       -       -       -        2t roubles.
Stone foxes  at Kamtchatka
per  fkin from -        -        1 to 2§
Red foxes from 80 copecs  to 1 rouble.
80 copecs.
At Kia&a from 80 copecs to     9 roubles.
Common wolves' fkins at per fkin 2
Beft fort per fkin from     -       8 to 16
Sables per ditto
2^ to, 10.
Pennant's Synopsis.
f Pallas Reise.    The latest prices were, stone foxes, at
Kamtchatka, per skin   -    40 cop. to 1 rouble.
Red foxes -        -        3 to 15 roubles.
At Kiacta -       -       from 10 to 25 roubles.
Sables *       -       -    10 to 25 re
C2  i JO
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Thus far jailed.
Beering to Lot. 6
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SotrnA or B R7 of Tcttig- a,t£k  PART I.
Period 1—1711 to 1741.
F>om the Conquest of Kamtchatka to  the conclusion of
Beering's and Tchirjkof s Expeditions.
Origin of the Ruffian Difcoveries—Voyage of
} Beering towards the Northern Ocean.
THE poffeffion of Kamtchatka was foon
followed by voyages of difcovery to t{ie
North Pacific Ocean. The vague accounts
collected from the Kamtchadals concerning the
vicinity of America to their coafts were tranf-
mitted to Peterfburg, and inflamed the zeal of
Peter the Great.
That monarch accordingly formed the plan of
a voyage of difcovery to afcertain the fepara-
tion, contiguity, or connection of Afia and America, and wrote inftructions with his own hand.
His death did not prevent the execution of th§
project, for the Emprefs Catharine commenced
ihex reign with ordering an immediate expedition under the command 01 Vitus Beering, in
conformity to the following inftructionsi of her
deceafed hufband:
■M Hi
1. You fhall caufe one or two convenient
veffels to be built at Kamtchatka, or elfewhere.
—2. You fhall endeavour to difcover, by coaft-
ing with thefe veffels, whether the country towards the north, of which at prefent we have no
diftinct knowledge, is a part of America or not.
—3. If it joins the continent of America, you
fhall endeavour, if poflible, to reach fome colony
belonging to fome European power; or in cafe
you meet with any European fhip, you fhall diligently enquire the name of the coafts, and fuch
other circumftances as it is in your power to
learn; and thefe you fhall commit to writing, fo
that we may have fome certain memoirs by
which a chart may be conftructed."
e\ -!.
On the 14th of July, having recommended
himfelf to the protection of the Almighty, Beering quitted the river of Kamtchatka, in a veffel
called the Fortune, having on board Spanberg
and Tfchirikof as his two lieutenants, and a crew
of forty men. He failed north-eaft within fight
of land, in order to delineate the coaft of Kamtchatka. On the 8th of Auguft, in latitude 640.
30'. he was vifited by eight natives, in a baidar,
who acquainted him by means of a Koriak interpreter, that they were Tfchutfki; that the
coaft for a confiderable extent was inhabited by
their mmm^mm—m
FROM   I7H   TO   I74I
their nation, and that the land trended towards the
weft. They likewife informed him of an ifland
fituated not far diftant, which he difcovered on
the 10th, and called the ifland of St. Laurence.
An officer who was twice difpatched to examine
it, obferved feveral houfes, but no inhabitants,
who, probably from fear, or fome other motive,
concealed themfelves.
Beering continued his courfe till the 15th of
the fame month, when he found himfelf in the
latitude of 670. 18'. and conceiving that he had
now fully executed hi& orders, as he faw no
land either to the north or eaft, he refolved to
return, deeming it ufelefs to continue his voyage
towards the weft, or to run the hazard of being
prevented by contrary winds from gaining Kamtchatka during the fummer, and obliged to winter'
in a country where he was fure of meeting with
little or no wood, and which might be inhabited
by fome nation enemies to the Ruffians.
From the mouth of the river Kamtchatka, to
the utmoft point of their voyage, they faw nothing upon the coaft but great ridges of rocks,
,the tops of which were covered with fnow though
it was fummer. They traverfed, according to
their reckoning, about ten leagues of latitude,
and thirty of longitude; their departure eaft-
ward was 372 German leagues. On the 20th of
Auguft, in their return, they were vifited by
C 4 forty !;A,e;:
forty perfons in four fmall boats, who,  froia
their appearance feemed to be Tchutfki.   They
brought dried flefh, fifh, and water contained in
whales bladders ; fifteen fox fkins, and four nar-
yal's teeth, which they exchanged for pins- and
needles.    They faid their nation travelled with
rein deer as far as the river Kovyma, which
runs into the Northern Ocean, but had never attempted any paffage by fea; they inhabited along
tract of country upon the coaft, and had poffeffed
it many years; one of them particularly added,
that he had   vifited the  fortrefs  of Anadirfk,
where they had traded with, and been well treated
by the Ruffians.
On the 29th of Auguft a violent ftorm, attended with a thick fog, drove the veffel upon the
coaft of fome country eaft of Kamtchatka, where
they were obliged to come to anchor. On the
2d of September they arrived fafely in the mouth
of the river Kamtchatka, and, having fecured
their veffel in a creek, went to the lower fortrefs,
and paffed the winter*.
This is the only accurate account ever given
to the public of this interefting expedition, which
afcertained the feparation of the two continents,
at leaft as high as latitude 6f. the moft northern
I Harris's Complete Collection of Voyages and Travels,
voi.2.po 1020,1021,
point tfRQN   I7II   TO   I74I.
point of Beering's voyage. Muller, in his Account of the Ruffian Difcoveries, has given a
fhort abftract of this voyage, and has added fome
conjectures which only embarrafs the narrative,
and render it more difficult to be underftood.
He was at that time bewildered with the vague
accounts of the R uffians and Coffacs, who had
vifited the land of Tchutfki, and with the uncertain reports of the Tchutfki themfelves concerrfi
ing the form and fituation of Tchukotfkoi
Nofs, which he placed in latitude 7G0; miftakes
which he afterwards candidly acknowledged and
In 1729 Beering made another attempt to
difcover the continent of America, which the
natives of Kamtchatka defcribed as lying not far
diftant to the eaft of their peninfula. He failed
on the 5th of June, but was prevented by adverfe
winds from proceeding more than two hundred
verfts; and meeting with no land, fteered round
the fouthern promontory of Kamtchatka, entered
the river Bolfchaia, and arrived at Okotfk on the
23d of July.
From this period no attempt was made to
difcover the American continent until 1741,
when Beering and Tfchirikof failed upon their
ever memorable expedition. The whole account which Muller has given of this voyage is
extremely fcanty and confufed, and the narrative
of m
■   ^
of the tranfactions relating to their difcoveries on
the coaft of America is comprifed in a few lines:
c< Nothing particular happened till the 18th
of July, when Captain Beering, after giving orders for fleering more and more northerly,
came in fight of the continent of America in
580. 28'. north latitude, and believed, according
to his journal that he had failed 50*. eaft long,
from Avatcha. Tchirikof reached the fame
coaft three days before, viz. on the 15th of
July in 560. north lat. and according to computation, 6o°. longitude from Avatcha.
<c The coaft made by Tchirikof being fteep
and rocky, and without iflands, he anchored at
fome diftance. Ten men being fent in the longboat on fhore, to provide water and reconnoitre
the country, were to land, and make the appointed fignals, but never returning, were fuppofed to be maffacred by the inhabitants. Six,
difpatched in another boat to their affiftance,
probably fhared the fame fate, as they never returned. After cruifing feveral days, and receiving no tidings of their unfortunate comrades,
Tchirikof could not venture to continue any
longer on the coaft, but on the 27th of July
took his departure for Kamtchatka. Being impeded by contrary winds and ftormy weather, he
did not enter the bay of Avatcha before the 9th
of October, after lofing twenty-one men by the
if FROM   I7II   TO   1741«
fcurvy, and want of frefh water, out of feventy,
of which the crew confifted« among thefe was the
celebrated de l'lfle de la Croyere, who fell down
on the deck, and died at the very moment he
was going to difembark.
" At the fame time Beering attempted to explore the coaft which he had difcovered, and to
provide himfelf with frefh water. The country
confifted of ftupendous mountains covered with
fnow. He failed towards it, but variable breezes
blowing, he could not reach it fooner than the
20th of July, when, under a tolerably large ifland,
not far from the continent, he anchored in twenty-two fathoms water, and a foft clayey bottom..
A point of land, which here projects into the fea,
was called the Cape of St. Elias, becaufe it
was obferved on the day of St. Elias. Another
head-land, that afterwards appeared oppofite the
firft, towards the weft, received its name from
St. Hermogenes. Between thefe points there
was a bay which was deemed fecure.'
u For the purpofe of reconnoitring this bay,
Beering fent the mafter, Kytrof, with fome armed
men; another boat, in which was Steller, was ;
difpatched at the fame time for water. Kytrof
found between fome iflands a convenient anchor-
ing-place, fecure from all winds. Landing on
an ifland, he obferved fome empty huts, but faw
no inhabitants, who were fuppofed to come from
the continent for the purpofe of fifhing." j
Muller s8
:: '-ir .in- • ;
.J:;-" t.      SB
iiee . I
9§: If
Muller then gives a brief account of Steller's
obfervations, which I fhall omit, becaufe thejr
are more circumftantially related in his own
<c On the 2lft of July they again put to fea;
and attempted to trace the coaft as far as 650.
N. latitude, but they could proceed no farther
%o the north, and were even obliged to fail continually to the fouth, becaufe the fhores trended
fouth-weft. At the fame time they were impeded by numerous iflands, in parts contiguous
to the continent. When they hoped to fail in fe—
curity, land was difcovered a-head, and on both
fides, wherefore they were obliged feveral times
to turn and feek a free paffage. It occafionally
happened at night, that with the fame wind and
weather, they at one time failed in calm water,
and at another in a boifterous fea, where they
could hardly govern the fhip. What elfe could
this indicate, than that in the calm they had
failed in fheltered water, between iflands which
the darknefs of the night did not permit, them to
c< Some days paffed without feeing land, when,
on the 27th of July, about midnight, they came
into twenty fathoms, water.    They could not*
difcover whether it was a fand bank, or whether
continent or an ifland, on account of the dark-
* Muller, S. R. G, V. 3.
nefs< FROM   I7II   TO  1741. 29
nefs. They fteered fome times on one fide and
fometimes on the other; every where they found
lefs water; they durftnot venture to anchor, for
the wind was ftrong and the waves high. Moreover it was to be feared they might be too far
from the continent, or too near. At laft it was
concluded to hazard failing to the fouth, in which
they fucceeded, and after fleering fome hours
longer in twenty fathoms water, they regained
an open lea.
"An ifland, difcovered on the 30th of
July, in foggy weather, was called Tumanooi
Oftrof, that is, The Foggy Ifland. They
approached it till they had only feven or eight
fathoms water, and anchored: but when the
weather began to clear up found themfelves
more than a verft from the ifland. The whole
month of Auguft elapfed with fimilar occurrences ; when the fhip's crew began to be much
afflicted with the fcurvy, and particularly the
From this fcanty and uncertain account, much
doubt was entertained, whether Beering and
Tchirikof ever reached America; and fince later
difcoveries have removed that doubt, fubfequent
navigators have differed about the precife parts
explored by Beering and Tchirikof. Cook
places Beering's Bay in one place; Vancouver
in another; and the Ruffians in Prince William's Sound.
Isfi^       CHAP. j4&
ii 1
1©ff   !!
Ne :"
Steller's Journal of Beering's Voyage of Difcovery
from Kamtchatka to the Coafl of America^ m
1741- ,     '^.  e   %        /
PALLAS has given to the public* the Journal
of Steller, who accompanied Beering in this
memorable expedition. As it contains the only
circumftantial relation of that expedition, rectifies feveral errors in Muller's account, and as
it has never made its appearance in Engiifh, I
deemed it neceflary, for the complete elucidation of the Ruffian Difcoveries, to fubmit to the
public a tranflation of thofe parts which detail
the principal events of the voyage; but have
omited feveral prolix accounts of his difputes with
the officers, and fome of his frequent digreffions
concerning the fuppofed fituation of America.
The narrative is preceded by an Introduction,
in which Steller cenfures the preparations and
conduct of the expedition, and lays down an
hypothefis of the relative fituations of Afia and
America towards the North. As this point is.
no longer doubtful, it is needlefs to enter into
* In the 5th volume of his Neue Nordische Beytraege.
II ill FROM   I7H   TO   I74I
the difcuffion j and therefore only that part of
the Introduction which relates to himfelf, and
to his engagement in the expedition is fubjoined.
11 fhall omit/' he fays," any account, as well
of the ten years' preparations, as of Spanberg's
voyage to Japan, and confine myfelf to the narrative of Beering's and Tchirikof's voyage, as
long as the two veffels continued together, and
from their feparation to the particulars of Beering's voyage, and the fate of the crew, until their
return to Kamtchatka on the 26th of Auguft,
1742. But as it is well known that I was fent in
1738 from St. Peterfburg to Kamtchatka, folely
for the purpofe of examining the natural hiftory
of thofe regions, and had not the fmalleft fhare in
the preparations, it is incumbent on me to relate
the manner in which I engaged in the expedition.
" In 1740 I fent a petition from Kamtchatka
to the fenate, requefting permiflion to accompany Captain Spanberg in another voyage to
Japan, to obtain authentic information concerning the intermediate iflands, as well as Japan itfelf. Meanwhile, Captain Beering being ihform-
ed of my infatiable defire to explore new regions,
invited me to Avatcha, and perfuaded me to accompany him to America, under the promife of
juftifying my conduct to the fenate, and of fup-
plying me with every means jn his power to forward RUSSIAN   DISCOVERIES
ward my refearches. He alfo fent me a minute
of a general confultation with his officers, wherein I was charged with the examination of the minerals. I therefore undertook this office from
difinterefted motives, which, I truft will plead
my excufe for quitting Kamtchatka without or*.
ders. And I dare anticipate my pardon, although I have made fo few difcoveries. The
fcantinefs of my information was chiefly occafi-
oned by the failure of the Captain's prOrnifes, who
only fhewed me the continent of America at a
diftance, and with great difficulty confented to fet
me afhore on three iflands, without affiftance,
like a criminal, and difcouraged my zeal w^S|
the moft peevifh expreffions. My advice was
alfo contemptuoufly rejected by the officers, who,
difgufted with their long refidence in Siberia,
were eager to return, and endeavoured to complete in one fummer what could not be ac-
complifhed in lefs than two.:
i i
ssc- FROM
Departure from Kamtchatka—Difcovery of America—Defcription of the Coafl-*—Account of an
Ifland on which Steller landed—Animal,vegetable^ and marine Produftions—Indifpoftion
of Beering, and Infulordination of the Crew—
Return towards Kamtchatka—Incidents of the
Voyage—Difbreffes of the Crew.
The expedition confifted of two packet-boats,
the St. Peter,7 commanded by Beering, and the
St. Paul by Tchirikof. The St. Peter, in which
fhip I failed, carried, befides the captain, Waxet
the chief lieutenant, Kytrof the mafter, and other
officers, feventy-fix men.
June 4, we took our departure from Avatcha,
and failing with fouth, weft, and fouth-Weft
winds, E. S. E. and S. E. by E. were on the
11th, 135 dutch miles from Avatcha, and in
latitude 460. 47'. On the 12th we firft perceived
tokens which indicated the vicinity of land, fuch
as marine plants, and flocks of ducks and fea-
gulls. In latitude 51V we were feparated from
the St. Paul during a thick fog, and never again
came in fight of her, though we failed to the 460.
D .. of 34
of latitude, in hopes of rejoining her. On the
18th we altered our courfe, and fteered north-
eaftward, making two degrees of longitude to
one degree of latitude. On reaching 52°. latitude, we again perceived many tokens of land, to
the north, but did not difcover it till the 18th of
July in 590. and fome minutes of latitude, and j
49°. longitude eaft from Avatcha, or about 500
dutch miles. I truft I may be juftified for
thus briefly relating the events of a month's
voyage, as we had favourable wind and weather;
faw nothing but fky and water, and heard from
the officers only expreffions of aftonifhment, at
the grofs miftake of fappofing that Kamtchatka
was only feparated from America by a narrow
channel. During this period the Captain being
confined by conftant indifpofition to his cabin,
was deceived by the reports of the officers,
and his opinion for fleering towards the north
conftantly over-ruled.
After detailing at fome length, his altercations with the officers, for not crediting his
affertions that they were not far from land,
and for not fleering towards the north,. Steller
continues his journal.
Though land was difcovered on the 15th of
July, yet as it was not fufficiently vifible to be'
delineated, it was according to euftom called my
$f- fancy, FROM   I7II   TO   I714. 35
fancy, although the next day it was more clearly
difcerned in the fame place. It was very elevated, and we obferved a mountain ftretching
inland, whofe height was fo great as to be vifible
at fea at the diftance of fixteen dutch miles. I
do not recollect to have noticed a higher moun*/
tain either in Siberia or Kamtchatka. The coaft
of the continent was much broken, and indented
with many bays and harbours.
It is eafy to conceive the general joy w7hich
the fight of landoccafioned, and all congratulated
the captain on this important difcovery, which
would redound fo much to his honour: but he
coldly received their congratulations, and even
fhrugged up his fhoulders on the occafion.    He
alfo faid afterwards to me and Plenisner in the
cabin, " We think we have completed our difcoveries, and many entertain great expectations,
but we do not confider 5ur diftance from home*
and what accidents may yet happen. We are unacquainted with the country, we are unprovided
with provifions, and perhaps contrary winds may
impede our return."   As we approached land, it
was ridiculous to hear the difcordant exclamations of the crew, priding themfelves on the importance of the difcovery, anticipating great rewards, or pathetically bewailing their fituation.
Some propofed to feek a convenient harbour,
others reprefented the danger of drawing near to
D 2 the m
the land. All clamoroufly urged their refpective
opinions, but no one made any reprefentation to
the captain. General confultations, though formerly held upon every trifle, were omitted in
this important bufmefs, the chief object of this
expenfive expedition, which had already employed ten years in preparation; and the only union
which appeared among us was that of being confined in the fame veffel.
On the 17th we flowly approached the land
with a gentle breeze, and on Saturday the 18th
came fo near that we difcovered, with great
fatisfaction, large tracts of foreft and extenfive
plains ftretching at the feet of the mountains.
The fhore was flat, level, and apparently fandy.
We now left the continent on our right, and
failed to the north-weft under a lofty ifland, con-
fifting of a fingle mountain cloathed with firs ;
and, on account of contrary winds, paffed the
night in repeated tacks.
Sunday the 19th in the morning, being two
miles from the northern extremity of the ifland,
a trifling conteft arofe. On the preceding day
we faw the ftrait between the continent and the.
ifland, into which a confiderable river feemed to
flow, as I conjectured from the current vifible
two miles from fhore, the colour and frefhnefs
of the water, and the various drifted fubftances.
I therefore propofed to .enter this ftrait, and
anchor Prom 1711 to 1714.
anchor in the mouth of the river where we,
fhould probably find fufficient water for our veffel which drew only nine feet, and it would have
been a more commodious fituation than under
the ifland where we anchored on the 20th : but
my propofal was rejected.
We paffed the remainder of the day in tacking
to approach the ifland, to enter the great bay
which we faw at fome diftance, and at the fame
time get under the land, which we effected on the
20th, though not without confiderable terror on
account of the numerous iflands between which
we anchored. The outermoft of thefe was called
Cape St. Elias, becaufe we paffed it on St. Elias's
day, and it was a Angular circumftance that the
officers perfifted in calling that ifland a cape, although a cape is a promontory of the continent.
In this ftate of affairs, inftead of amicably
agitating the queftion concerning their future
proceedings, whether they fhould explore the
coaft, or pafs the winter in thefe parts, or return
without delay to Kamtchatka ; no regular con-
fultation was held, but every one was filent and
acted as he pleafed. It was however unanimoufly
agreed that a boat fhould be fent for water, and
I could not avoid obferving that we were only
come to convey American water to Afia. It
was fetded that the fmall boat fhould be fent for
the purpofe of procuring water, and the mafter
D 3 Kytrof
l*Si P*:
Kytrof fhould be difpatched in the large boat
with a fufficient number of men and fire arms to
explore the land. In vain I requefted to accompany Kytrof, who was willing to receive me;
my requeft was rejected, and it was not without
difficulty that I was permitted to go on fhore
with the watering party with my fervant, Thomas
Lepekin, a Coffac. They endeavoured to alarm
me with terrible accounts of the ferocity of the
natives \ but I was not to be deterred, and I
Janded with the watering party.
I had no fooner landed than I went towards
the continent in company with my Coffac, and
within a verft found marks of inhabitants. I
obferved a trunk of a tree hollowed like a trough,
in which the natives, according to the cuftom in
Kamtchatka, had recently boiled meat by means
of hot ftones: feveral large bones were fcattered
about, which appeared to have been roafted;
they feemed to be the bones of a land animal,
and probably of a rein-deer, which may have
been brought from the continent, I likewife
noticed remains of Yukola, or dried fifh, which
the Kamtchadals ufe inftead of bread; alfo fhells
of large mufcles, fome of which were eight inches
in diameter, and fweet grafs * prepared in the
* The Sphondilium foliolis pinnatifidis of Linnaeus.
Kamt- FROM   I7II   TO I714.
IKamtchadal manner. Near the fame place were
the embers, which were ftill glowing, and a wooden tinder-box, fimilar to thofe ufed in Kamtchatka; but the tinder was different, beingformed
of white mofs, bleached by the fun *. From
thefe circumftances we may conclude that the
natives were of the fame origin as the Kamtcha-
dals ; but we muft fuppofe that, the continent of
America trends farther to the weft, and is much
nearer to Kamtchatka to the north; for it is not
credible that the Kamtchadals fhould be able
with their crazy veflels to perform a voyage of
near five hundred miles.
Having fatisfied my curiofity, I continued my
progrefs, and at the diftance of three verfts
found a way leading through a thick foreft, near
me fhore. Many of the trees were ftripped of
their bark, which I prefume was ufed to cover
the habitations. On the fkirt of the foreft I
found frefh grafs, ftrewed on the ground, and on
removing it obferved a layer of ftones, under
which was a bark covering fupported by poles,
which concealed a cellar (or cabin) containing
feveral houfehold utenfils, particularly veffels
made of bark; alfo falmon and fweet herb, from
* I   am informed   bv  Mr.   Sawer,   that this   tinder,
which Steller mistook for white moss, is composed of the
leaves of wormwood mixed with ashes, and rubbed between,,
the hands.
which igf
re. IIP'
3B*t mi
which brandy is diftilled at Kamtchatka, and
which was prepared with more cleanlinefs, and
better tailed than I had before feen. I likewife
obferved a fpecies of hemp, which I thought was
prepared from nettles, and was probably ufed
for making fifhing nets as in Kamtchatka : alfo
rolls of the inner bark of larch or pine, dried,
which in cafe of neceffity is ufed as food in many
parts of the Ruffian empire : great quantities of
thongs made of fea-weed, which were of extraordinary ftrength. I found arrows much larger
than thofe ufedbytheKamtchadals,and fimilar to
thofe of the Tungufes and Tartars, well polifhed
and ftreaked, indicating that they were fafhioned
with iron tools.
I fent my Coffac with two bundles of dried
fifh, fome arrows, a wooden tinder-box, fome
thongs made of bark, and feveral kinds of grafs,
to the watering party, with orders to deliver them
to the captain, and to requeft two or three men to
affift me in exploring the country. I then
covered the cabin again, proceeded alone, and
Tiaving continued fix verfts, came to a fteep
rock, extending into the fea, which I climbed
with much difficulty; but perceiving that the
eaftern fide was perpendicular, I turned towards
the fouth, hoping to reach the other fide of the
ifland, proceed along the ftrait, and explore the
river and harbour. On defcending the mountain,
which was overfpread with forefts, without any
traces of a road, finding it impaffible, I reafcended,
looked mournfully at the limits of my progrefs,
turned my eyes towards the continent, which it
was not in my power to explore, and obferved,
at the diftance of a few verfts, fome fmoke afcend-
ing from a wooded eminence, which gave me
hopes that I fhould meet with fome of the natives.
I haftened back to the place where I had
landed, and fent an account to the captain, requeuing the fmall boat with fome men for a few
hours, and in the mean time employed myfelf in
defcribing the fcarceft plants which I had difcovered ; but to my inexpreffible concern, I received a meffage to return inftantly on board, or
I fhould be left behind. I ftill however continued on fhore, fent my Coffac to fhoot fome
rare birds, which I difcovered at a little diftance,
and again proceeded towards the weft, reconnoitring the country, and did not return till fun-
fet, laden with plants and other curiofities.
Having again received a pofitive order to repair
on board, I reached the veffel with my collect
Soon after my return I advifed the officers to
fend fome prefents to thefubterraneous dwelling,4
and particularly fpecified knives and hatchets :
but objecting to thefe inftruments, which might
■ 42
'lit m
m »
sM I
be confidered as fymbols of hoftility, they left
an iron kettle, a pound of tobacco/ a Chinefe
pipe, and a piece of filk*.
An hour after my arrival Kytrof returned in
the great boat; he had found a harbour between
fome iflands, clofe to the continent, where we
could remain in fecurity. He faw no inhabitants, but found a wooden dwelling, from which
* I have been thus minute in specifying these things, which
were sent to the cabin, because they furnish an unquestionable proof that this was Kaye's Island, as will appear from a
passage in Sauer's Account of Billings's Expedition.
" An old man came on board the 29th, who seemed very
good natured and intelligent. Mr. Saretsheff and I entered
into conversation with him through our American interpre-"
ter, and asked him how long it was since the first ships made
their appearance among them; and whether he remembered
any boats having been lost ? He answered, that several boats
had been lost, which by his account we thought to be Spaniards. He said that they frequented (on%he chace in summer)
an island, which he described so particularly as convinced us
beyond a doubt, that it was the Kay's Island of Captain"
Cook. He remembered, that when he was a boy, a ship had
been close into the bay, on the west side of the island, and
had sent a boat on shore; but on its approaching land the
natives all ran away. When the ship sailed, they returned
to their huts, and found in their subterraneous store-room,
some glass beads, leaf tobacco, an iron kettle, and something
else. This perfectly answers to Steller's account of the Cape
St. Elias of Beering, and is undoubtedly the very spot where
Steller Jtanded, and where the things above-mentioned were
left in the cellar."   P. 193.
ii FROM  I7II  TO  1714.
he brought feveral utenfils, particularly a hollow
globe of hard burnt clay, inclofing a little clap-
per-ftone, which appeared to be a child's toy,
and a whet-ftone whereon copper inftruments
had been fharpened.
Thefe were all our tranfactions and obfervations, not, on the continent on which no one
landed, but on a fmall ifland which feemed about
three miles * long, and half a mile broad ; near
the continent, (which here formed a great bay, covered with many iflands) and only feparated from
it by a ftrait lefs than half a mile in breadth.
The only reafons why no landing was attempted
on the continent, were indolence, obftinacy, an
untimely fear of a few unarmed and terrified
favages, and a daftardly impatience to return
home; fo that the time bellowed on making obfervations had a geometrical proportion to the
preparations; ten years being employed in the
preparations, and ten hours in making obfervations. We have indeed a fketch of the continent on paper, but a Very imperfect idea of the
country itfelf, founded on a few difcoveries,
upon a fingle ifland, and grounded on mere
fuppofition. The following is drawn from a
curfory view of the American continent.
This part of America is fuperior in climate to
* Dutch or German miles.
the north-eaftern coaft of Afia; for though the
country, as well near the coaft as at fome diftance inland, abounds with very high mountains,
moft of whofe fummits were covered with perpetual fnow ; yet thefe mountains are much
more fertile than thofe of Afia, which produce
fmall quantities of ftunted trees, fcanty herbage,
and are principally bare rock, or covered with
mofs and aqueous plants;' whereas the mountains of America are thickly overfpread to a confiderable height with the fineft trees, and clothed
with rich herbage. The fprings, of which we
noticed a large number, rife in the vales, or at
the foot of the mountains, and do not burft from
the fides, and even near the fummits of the rocks,
as in Siberia.
The productions in the vegetable kingdom are
earlier, more abundant, and more regular in
their growth than thofe of Siberia, and rich forefts
overfpread the coafts even as high as 6o°. latitude. I am therefore of opinion that the continent of America extends from Cape Elias to
beyond 700. of latitude, and protects this part of
the coaft from the north winds, while towards
the eaft it is covered by a high range of mountains.
I found all the common berries in great abundance, and alfo a new kind of rafpberry, which
though not quite ripe, from its fize and excellent
M FROM  I.71 f TO I7I4.
tafte, deferved to be tranfplanted to St. Peterf-
The land animals that fell under my obferva-
tion, befides the rein deer, which from the feat-
tered bones I judged to be natives of the continent, were black and red foxes, not wild. Of common birds I perceived only the raven and magpie, but above ten foreign and unknown fpecies,
which from the brilliancy of their plumage were
eafily diftinsuifhed from the feathered tribes of
Siberia; one in particular of lively colours, of
which I recollected to have feen a figure in a recent account of Carolina*. The appearance of
this bird convinced me that we wTere on the coaft
of America.
The mildnefs of the climate, brings the fhoals
of fifh fooner near the fhore than at Kamtchatka.
Befides whales anddog-fifh, fea-otters frequent the
fhore in prodigious numbers; a proof that they are
probably a little difturbed by.the natives, otherwife
they would be asTcarce as on the coaft of JCamt-
chatka. In regard to minerals, the fcanty information which I am able to give cannot be attributed
* Steller alludes to Catesby's Carolina, 15 th plate, which
represents the North American blue jay, to which Steflers
bird bears some resemblance, but is of a different species.
Hence this bird proof of their vicinity to the American continent, though no one can doubt that Steller was
close to the coast.   Pallas. P^
to 46
iwm 1m
to my negligence, when it is confidered how
little a fingleTnan can perform in ten hours, in a
fmall ifland, and without affiftance; and I will
freely own that I obferved nothing but fand and
grey rock.
On the 21ft of July, impreffed with an anxious
defire to return, Beering appeared on deck, contrary to his ufual cuftom, and without confulting
any of the officers, ordered the   anchor to be
weighed, notwithstanding the  remonftrances of
Lieutenant Waxel to remain on the coaft till all
the veffels were filled with water.    A-few days
afterwards the captain propofed to the officers,
though without a regular confultation, that  as
winter w7as approaching, and  they  were   una-
quainted with the country, fea, and winds, they
fhould be contented with their difcoveries, and
return   immediately homewards ;   adding,  that
though the land probably extended towards the
weft, yet it might alfo tend to the fouth.    He
expreffed his apprehenfion left the veffel might
be ftranded in the night or in foggy weather, or
in cafe of autumnal ftormsbe wrecked upon fome
unknown ifland in an unknown fea.
This propofal, continues Steller, being thwarted by Lieutenants Waxel and Kytrof, we failed
along the coaft, until the 26th of July, for it
was thought proper to follow the coaft, though
it would have been fufficient after failing one
,&t hundred FROM 17II  TO 1714.
hundred verfts to have fteered one or two degrees to the north.
On the 27th, at night, a gale drove us towards a bank, ftretching into the' fea, on which
we found fixty * fathoms water; but the land
could not be difcerned f.
July 28 and 29, flormy and rainy weather,
we perceived many figns of a contiguous land,
from various drifted fubftances.
July 30, J 31. In clear weather and a calm
fea, we purfued our courfe, with a favourable
fouth-eafterly wind.
* * According to Muller, they Came into twenty fathoms
water. " They could not know," lie says, " Whether it was
a sand Bank, or whether they ought to take care of the continent, or of an island, for it was quite dark. Every where
they found less water; to come to an anchor they durst not
venture, for the wind was strong, and the waves high. Moreover it was to be feared that they might be either too far from
the shore, or too near it. At last it was concluded to hazard
sailing to the south, in which' they succeeded so well, that
after steering some hours longer in twenty fathoms water,
they regained a secure sea."-   S. A. G. p, 1.
f Muller says it was quite dark.
% According to Muller, on the 30th of July, they discovered an island which they called Toomanoi Ostrof, or
Foggy Island, near which they anchored in seven or eight
fathoms water; and it is laid down under that name in
Midler's chart of Beering's expedition. But;Cook thinks it
there misplaced, and gives the name to another island not
far distant.   Vol. ^2. p. 407? 410.
Auguft IJ»:
mm mf\
Wm ■ mm
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k. ■' '-^.,;
Elite I
e..".|» •*?, - '
'»■ »il -\K-
IE&.S !.'H: is.i: ,
K pt
"Auguft 1. At one o'clock in the morning
we found ourfelves by foundings in no more
than four fathoms water, which was otherwife
reported to the captain ; but the weather being
calm we got fo far from land, that we anchored
in eighteen or twenty fathoms till day-break.
Auguft 2. We found ourfelves in the morning about three verfts from an ifland*, which was.
tolerably large, and cloathed with forefts. The
weather was warm and agreeable, the fun fhone
brightly, and the wind'was ftill. In vain I desired permiflion to land only for two hours; my
requeft was rejected. Towards the evening we
hove anchor, and fleering wefterly, paffed the
ifland into the open fed.
Auguft 3. We came in fight of the continent
rn latitude 560. at the diftance of about fourteen
miles N. N. W. I W. and had a diftinct view of
high mountains covered with fnowf. With an
eafterly wind we failed to the fouth, becaufe the
continent ftretched to the weft, and found ourfelves in a kind of bay; the continent to the
W. and N. and the ifland to the E. before which
we anchored on the 2d £.    .
* Probably one of the islands in the vieii^ty of KocBak;
f This is plainly that country which the Russians call
X The following "part, from the 2d to the 11th, is taken
from a Russian translation of Stefler's journal, a leaf of the
original being defective.    PaUas*
Auguft FROM I7H  TO I74I.
Auguft 4 to 9. Steering S. we faw feveral
high, large, and woody iflands, lying about S. and
W. about the diftance of two or three miles, in-
fomuch that we feemed inclofed on all fides with
land; This group of iflands fo much impeded
our progrefs, that although the wind was E. and
S.E. and would have carried us feveral hundred
miles in our courfe toward Kamtchatka, yet we
loft the whole time in making repeated tacks.
In thefe parts we perceived numerous herds of
fea-dogs, fea-bears, fea-lions (Foca refina et
Leonina), fea-otters and porpoifes, which were
the harbingers of a violent ftorm.
Auguft 11.    We proceeded with a gentle
S. E. wind out of this land-locked bay due weft.
Auguft 12. The wind falling calm, it was
unanimoufly determined, on account of the late
feafon, and other circumftances, not to explore
the continent farther, but to return to Kamtchatka. This determination, although figned by
all the officers, from the captain to the boat-
fwain's mate, except myfelf, furprifed me exceedingly. We did not, however, follow the
neareft courfe to Avatcha, but ran under the
land, which was the fame as if we had followed
the American coaft. Between the 13th and
17th, the wind being weftward, we continued
tacking north and fouth in order to reach the
latitude of 530 but made little way.
E On 5°
Russian discoveries
An i
wm m\
mm Hie
: :■■■.■  j Jl.,.
ia4 si*"
Bnfc A ■ .:
On the 18th, at four in the morning, fur-
prifed with hearing the people on deck talking
of land, I went up and found that they had re-
folved not to mention this difcovery, becaufe it
appeared in the fouth. This land, though vifible
before fun-rife, was afterwards covered by a fog;,
yet its vicinity was evident from the quantity of
drifted fea-weeds, and the fudden ceffation of the
weft wind proved that we were between the continent and, an ifland.
The officers feemed averfe to make any farther difcovery; yet it Was unpardonable not to
explore it, and lay it down upon the map.
But  it was aftonifhins; that they did not attri-
bute the continual  weft wind  to  the vicinity
of landj and endeavour to run fouthward till they,
came oppofite the open channel, where   they
might have expected a north or north-eaft wind,
which from the  experience of Beering himfelf
was known to prevail in the autumn.
The 19th, at three in the morning, with an
eaft wind we ran due weft.    Towards noon the
wind fubfiding, and the horizon clearing up, the
continent was perceived to the north, but not-:
withftanding the quantity of drifted fubftances,
and the appearance of numerous animals and birds,
none believed it except myfelf and a few more.
Steering foutherly, on the 20th neither the land
nor any figns of it were vifible.
HI From
I*" FROM I7II TO 174l»
From the 20th to the 23d we plied under the
parallel of 530., and obferved numerous whales*
no longer fingle, but>in couples. On the 25th
we experienced a violent ftorm from the weft,
which compelled us to drive; the 26th we paffed
in tacking, and on the 27th the. horizon was
clear, the air cold, and the wind continued
On this day it was determined on account of
contrary winds, and the fcarcity of water, to take
a north-eafterly courfe and return to the land.
On the 28th we faw feveral fea-lions, a kind of
haddock which is feldom found in more than
ninety fathoms water, and  a black  fea-sull;
J * o        *
foon afterwards we imagined we faw land N. by
E., and on the morning of the 29th we difcovered
five iflands, behind which the continent appeared
at the diftance of eleven or twelve miles. The
weather was clear and pleafant, and at three
o'clock in the afternoon we reached the fore-
moft of thefe iflands, lying north and fouth, and
late in the evening anchored near a firiall rocky
iflet, about three verfts from it, to the ea«ft*.
At the largeft of thefe iflands they took in water,
j Muller says these islands are situated in lat. 55°* 25'.
and were called Schumagin Isles, from the first of the crew
who died and was buried here. They are situated ,on the
east side, and near the promontory of Alaska.
£ 2
and WM)]
K* fits'
and Steller landed for a few hours, and found
feveral excellent fprings which he in vain recommended, for the cafks were filled from
brackifh water, to which he attributes the fcurvy
and other diforders afterwards prevalent among
the crew. j
After detailing his numerous fquabbles with
the officers, Steller thus defcribes the ifland and
its  productions.   It appeared to be the largeft
of eight  contiguous   iflands, lying  within the
compafs of fix german miles; it was between
three and four german miles long, and three or
four verfts in breadth; though as we could not
fee the extremity,  it is  doubtful" whether  this
land did not form part of the continent, which ^
appeared north and weft at the diftance of ten-
miles.    This ifland, like the others, confifts of
high rocks overfpread with herbage : the rock is
principally of a yellowifh grey hue, and in fome
places I obferved fand ftone and black flate^r
The coaft is rocky and abounds with fprings.
The firft animal I obferved was a black fox,
which I miftook for a dog, as he barked and was
not timid. We alfo faw red foxes in different
places, and Marmots in great numbers; I perceived the track of an unknown animal which)
refembled that of a wolf, though it was much
larger. The fea birds were two fpecies of
fwans, pelicans (pelicani), razor-bills (torda),
iiim FROM   I7II   TO   I74I
ducks, fnipes, fand-pipers, many forts of gulls,
puffins (aha arctica), Greenland pigeons,divers,
and tufted auks (alca cirrhatajs among which
there is an unknown fpecies. But of land birds
I only perceived ravens, fly-catchers (grifola)3
fnow birds (emheriza navalis)i and moor-hens.
The fifh were, malma,a fpecies of falmon (tetrae.
iagopus)t and father-iafhers (cottusfcorpkis)'.
No trees were difcerned either on this or
any of the contiguous iflands, nor on one which
we difcovered on the 14th, under the fame lati—
tude. and which could not be above forty miles
diftant. All the iflands, likewife, which we
afterwards obferved in our voyage towards
Kamtchatka, were deftitute of wood j a circumftance probably arifing from their pofition and
narrownefs, for from this point to the coaft of
America they lie in the direction of north-eaft
and fouth-weft; and thofe ftretching towards
Kamtchatka north-weft and fouth-eafL Being
long therefore, and narrow in proportion to their
length, they experience the moft fudden tranfi-
tions from heat to cold, and are expofed to the
violent ftorms from the north and fouth to which
thefe regions are peculiarly fubject. Even the
lowTeft fhrubs are fo crooked, that not one
ftraight flick two ells long can be found in a
whole diflrict* y§
All the fhrubs growing in thefe ifles, except
the dwarf willow, which does not rife more than
two ells high, have been defcribed in another
place. In general I fhall only add that the moft
rare American productions, growing on rocks,
are found here as well as at Cape Su Elias, and
were afterwards obferved in Beering's Ifland,
and during the autumn in Kamtchatka. The
plants growing in vallies and moift places are
the fame as thofe which are natives of Europe,
Afia, and America, under the fame latitude.
The vegetable productions, which we found of
the greateft ufe, were, befides the red bilberries
and whortle berries, the excellent antifcorbutic
herbs, cochlearia, lapathum folio cubitali (heidel
heren), or rafpberry empetrum or fchikfcha,
gentian, and a fpecies of creffes which I collected
for the captain and myfelf. In vain I reprefented, that the medicine cheft contained no remedies for the fcurvy and afthma, the moft
common difeafes in fea voyages, and requefted
fome men to gather antifcorbutic herbs for the
ufe of the crew : my propofal was contemptu-
oufly rejected, even after the captain had recovered the ufe of his limbs by means of fcurvy-,.
grafs, and the lapathum folio cubitali, which I
prescribed, in three days, had again fattened the
teeth of feveral of the crew*
As it rained in the evening, I built a fhed for
the purpofe of paffing the night on fhore; but
returned FROM   1711   TO   I74I
returned to the veffel and reprefented the  bad-
nefs of the   water,  and urged the neceffity of
gathering herbs.    My remonftrances had no effect: and I was ordered to gather the herbs my- <
felf, as if I had been a furgeon's apprentice.
On the qift of Auguft I agrain went on fhore,
continuing my occupations and exploring the
country ; but towards evening I was fummoned
haftily to the veffel, on account of a rifing ftorm,
of which not the leaft fign appeared on fhore, as
the whole crew were to be collected on board,
-that we might be ready to put to fea, fhould the
ftorm drive the veflel from her anchorage, although the place was before faid to be protected
on all fides.
We all haftensd to the eaftern fhore of the
ifland, and found every thing in great confufion;
the fick, who were landed the day before, could
hardly be conveyed to the boat, the furf running
fo high that we were oblised to wade through
the water up to the middle. This day we in.*
terred the firft of our crew who died, of the
name of Schumagin, and called the ifland after
him, Schumagin's Ifland.
On reaching the veflel we had the difappoint-
ment to find that Kytrof and his party, who had
been fent on fhore, were not returned, and a
violent ftorm blowing from the north-eaft we
were apprehenfive left we fhould be obliged to
E 4 leave if
m f
K*f. ■'•■''"'■.'
>h t
leave them on fhore. Fortunately however, the
captain, during the firft ftorm at midnight, did
not permit the cable to be cut, but threw out
another anchor, which faved us from being
wrecked inthe darknefs of the night, and in the
confufion which reigned among the crew; and
the wind at length fhifted to the weft, on which
quarter we were covered by the land.
September 1. The wind being ftill high, with
continual rain, we paffed the day with confiderable anxiety, becaufe Kytrof had not yel arrived.
If we had not been detained by his abfence we
might have availed ourfelves of the favourable
gale which continued-five days, and made more
than one hundred miles in our courfe*. On
the 3d, Kytrof and his party being returned, we
weighed anchor, /and with a fouth-weft wind*
paffed round the rocky iflet, as we could not
Hand out to fea till we had cleared the outermoft
ifland to the fouth-eaft. At two in the afternoon
we reached the back part of the ifland, and came
to anchor two verfts from land.
On the 4th we made an attempt to purfue our
voyage by paffing round the weft fide of the
ifland; but being prevented by a contrary
wind, we returned to our  former anchorage.
*  .XT,
Notwithstanding the frivolous complaints of Steller, his
own account clearly justifies the conduct of Beering.
* Here FRON   I7II   TO   I74I.
Here we unexpectedly faw fome Americans^
we heard a loud cry near a rock to the fouth,
which we miftook for the roaring of a fea-lion,
as we did not expect to find inhabitants in a
defolate ifland, at the diftance of twenty miles
from the continent. Soon after two fmall baidars, each containing one man, were obferved
approaching our veffel. At the diftance of half
a verft they commenced a long and uninter-
rupted oration, which none of our interpreters
underftood, and which we fuppofed to be a
prayer, conjuration, or a compliment to welcome us as ftrangers, fimilar to the ceremonies
ufed in Kamtchatka and the Kuril Iflands. As
they drew near we beckoned them to approach
us without fear. But as they byfigns invited us
to land, and feemed to offer us wood and water,
we again beckoned them, and pronounced the
^Wprd, Nitifchi, which according to Baron La-
hontan in his defcription of North America,
fignifies water : this word they repeated feveral
times, and again pointed to the land. One
however, as he came near, took out from his
bofom fome iron or lead-coloured micaceous
earth, and drew marks with it acrofs his cheeks
in the fhape of two pears, fluffed his noftrils with
grafs, and thruft thin pieces of bone through the
cartilige of his nofe. He then took up a rod
three ells in length, coloured red, refembling
a bil- Hi!;
a billiard flick*, faftened two hawk's wings to
it by means of whalebone, difplayed it to us, and
threw it laughing towards our veflel into the
water. We in return tied two Chinefe tobacco-
pipes and fome glafs beads to a little board, and
threw it towards him : he took it up, examined
it, and gave it to his companion, who laid it
upon his baidar. Becoming bolder, he approached nearer, but with great caution, tied
the body of a hawk embowelled to another
flick, and held it out to our Koriac interpreter,
to receive from us a piece of Chinefe filk and a
looking-glafs. But the interpreter pulling the
flick towards him, inftead of faftening the filk to
it, the American alarmed, let it go, and paddled
to a little diftance. We then threw him the
filk and looking-glafs, and they both rowed to
land, beckoning us to follow them. During this
interview fome natives on the fhore continued
fhouting, and calling to their companions.
After a fhort converfation the boat was hoifted
out, in which I refolved to go on fhore with
Lieutenant Waxel, the Koriac interpreter, and
* This rod, with its ornaments, was probably the Calumet
of the American tribes, which is occasionally used both as a
Symbol of peace and war. It is a pipe, the bowl of which
is made of red marble, with a tube of a long reed, and
ornamented-with feattars and wings of birds.
nine FROM   I7II   TO   I74I
nine of the crew. We were provided with
lances, hangers," and guns, which we concealed
under a fail-cloth to caufe no fufpicion; we alfo
took bifcuit, brandy, and other trifles as prefents.
Unfortunately we could not land, the coaft being rocky, and the furf fo violent that the boat
with great difficulty was prevented from being
dafhed to pieces. On our approach, both men
and women flocked towards the fhore, appearing
full of admiration, and inviting us in the moft
friendly manner to land. The drefs of both
fexes was fo much alike, as to be fcareelv diftin-
guifhed from each other. %M
We accordingly ordered our interpreters to
flrip, and wade through the water. The iflanders
received them in a friendly manner, and holding
them under the arms, which among them is a
great mark of refpect, led them to the place where
they had been fitting. They then prefented them
with a piece of whale blubber, talked inceffantly,
and pointed towards the other fide of the hills,
as if to notify the place of their dwelling, as we
afterwards fuppofed from obferving fome huts
in that direction, when we coafted the ifland
Several of the iflanders remained gazing at us,
and repeatedly invited us to fhore; and when
we made figns that it was impoffible to venture
near the fhore, one of them lifted his baidar
into »
i lite
it 9!#: i
1 m
into the water, and rowed towards us. Not-
withftanding my remonftrances he was welcomed
with a cup of brandy, which he, imitating us,
emptied quickly, but as quickly fpit up again,
appearing indignant at this fuppofed deception.
Our men however, thought the Americans had
failor's ftomachs, and endeavoured to remove
hi$ difguft by prefenting him with a lighted
pipe of tobacco, which he accepted : but being
iequally difgufted with Jiis attempt to fmoke,-
rowed away with great marks of difpleafure.
The moft civilized European would be affected
in the fame manner if prefented with toad-ftool,
or rotten fifh and willow bark, which are delicacies with the Kamtchadals.
The wind increafing we called back the interpreters*; but the iflanders, who appeared de-
firous of their company, would not permit,
them to return. They teftified a particular
partiality to our Koriac, who refembled them
in countenance and pronunciation. They firft
endeavoured to detain tfeem by offering whale
blubber and paint; but finding gifts ineffectual
they held them by the arms, others Waded
through the water, feized a rope which was
fattened to our boat, and not perhaps aware
of our danger, endeavoured to draw it a-fhore.
The iflanders not being diffuaded by our figns,
we difcharged three muikets over their heads,
which I FROM   I7II   TO   1741.
which fo terrified them that they fell .as if
thunderftruck. Our interpreters, availing themfelves of this opportunity, ruflied into the water,
and waded to the boat.
On recovering from their alarm the natives
made figns for us to depart, and fome even took
up ftones. We inftantly returned to our veffel, much diffatisfied with our adventure; but
we had reafon to congratulate ourfelves on our
fafe arrival, for a brifk fouth wind arofe immediately, and it foon afterwards began to rain,
which continued the whole night.
I fhall here mention a few circumftances
which attracted my attention during the fhort
time of our continuance on the fhore. The
baidars of the Americans are about twelve feet
long, two high, and two broad on the deck,
pointed before, flat and fquare at the ftern.
The frame appears to be of ribs joined at each
extremity, and extended within by crofs bars.
They are covered with fkins, probably of feals,
arid flained brown or black.
The iflanders, whom I obferved, were moftly
young or middle aged; they are of moderate
(lature, but tolerably well proportioned; their
arms and legs very flefhy. Their hair is ftraight
and of a gloffy blacknefs; their face brown and
flat, the nofe is likewife flat, but not broad or
large, the eyes black, the lips thick and turned
upwards* m,
Pf ?Ii
■iff ffl^1
il IP
IIS ftp
W- ij'   e
Hi Bite
yg life
' jpfll
■:;-..-■.■ IS..
upwards. Their necks are fhort, fhoulders
broad, bodies thick but not corpulent. They
wore fhirts made with the inteftines of whales,
either tied round the waift with a thong, or
hanging loofe. They had boots and breeches
like thofe of the Kamtchadals, made of feal
fkin, flained of a brownifh red with alder bark,
and at the girdle a long iron knife hanging in a
fheath of very bad workmanfhip, like the Ruffian
peafants,, which appeared to be of their own manufacture.
While one of the natives was cutting a bladder with a knife, we examined it as accurately as
the diftance would permit, and could perceive,
that it was not like European workmanfhip. It
may therefore be conjectured, that they do not
poffefs iron ore, of which hitherto few or no
traces have been difcovered at Kamtchatka, and
are alfo not acquainted with the method of frnelt-
ing it. The neatnefs of the arrows found in the
hut near Cape St. Elias, proves doubtlefs, that
the favages muft have iron or copper knives.
On the contrary I know from certain information, that the Tchutfki traded from one of the
neighbouring iflands to America; and though
this intercourfe, from fome difagreement has
been interrupted, it has been carried oh through
fhe inhabitants of the ifles. The chief articles of this traffic are knives, hatchets, lances,
/ and FROM   I7H    TO   I74I
and iron arrow heads, which the Tchutfki purchafe at a very high price . from Anadyrfk, and
barter for a much higher with the Americans for
the fkins of fea-otters, foxes, and martens.
Now, if the Americans themfelves could fmek
iron, and fabricate thefe goods, why fhould they
buy them at a dear rate from others ?
September 8, it rained much in the forenoon,
biit grew variable in the afternoon. The wind
being fouth-eaft, we were afraid of being driven
on fhore, and weighed anchor. At the fame
time we obferved two baidars going towards the
fiiore. We fought for an anchorage, where wTe
might be fheltered towards the weft, and found
one at five o'clock. About an hour afterwards
nine Americans came in their baidars drawn up
in a line, and performed the fame ceremonies
which I have already mentioned. They wore
hats of bark, coloured green and red, open at
top and fhaped like candle fereens, apparently
j for protecting the eyes againft the rays of the
fun. Some of thefe fereens were ornamented
with hawks feathers and grafs, in the fame manner as the natives of Brazil adorn themfelves with
tufts of feathers. Thefe hats might lead us to
fuppofe, that the natives of this part of America
are defcended from Ana; for the Kamtchadals and
Koriacs wear the like, of which feveral fpecimens
may be feen in the mufeum of St, Peterfburg.
In exchange for a rufty kettle, five needles,
and fome thread, we procured two of thefe hats;
on one of which was a little image or idol in
a fitting pofture, with a feather behind, probably to reprefent the tail. Having exchanged
thefe articles they paddled to fhore without
any further ceremony, made a great fire, and
fhrieked for a confiderable time: foon after
it   became   dark,   and we did   not   fee   them
On this occafion I again obferved, that thefe
people deem it a particular ornament to bore
holes in various parts of the face, as we do in the
ears, and to infert ftones and bones. One of them
had put a kind of flate pencil, above two inches
long, through the cartilege of the nofe; a fecond
fluck a bone, three inches long, between the
chin and under-lip, and a third in both noftrils.
Finally, I obferved that the greater part of thefe
Americans have little or no beard, in which
thev agree with the inhabitants of Kamtchatka
and other Siberian nations. It is however ftill
to be decided, whether thefe people inhabit the
continent or the iflands. According to my
opinion they vifit the iflands during the fum-'
mer, for the fake of birds and their eggs; others
for hunting whales and feals, and are probably
compelled to return to the continent in winter
for want of fuel.
From JTROM 17H TO I74I.
From the> beginning of September, when they
feem to have fallen in with the chain of the Fqx
Iflands in latitude 500. to the middle of October,
the weather was extremely variable: they experienced a feries of florms, fuch as appalled the
moft courageous fpirit, and induced the pilot,
Haffelberg, to declare, that during the expedience of fifty years, he had never witneffed fuch
violent tempefts. During this dangerous navigation, in which they were repeatedly entangled
with iflands, and narrowly efcaped fhipwreck,
the mifery and defpondency of the crew were
inexpreffible; and their condition was rendered
-ftill more deplorable, by difcontent andinfubor-
dination, and by the helplefs ftate of Beering.
At one period only ten perfons were capable of
duty, and they were too weak to fyrl the fails,
fo that the fhip was left to the mercy of the
Steller draws a ftriking picture of their extreme mifery :—H The general diftrefs and mortality," he fays, " increafed fo faft, that not only
the fick died, but thofe who pretended to be
healthy, when relieved from their polls fainted,
and fell down dead, of which the fcantinefs of
water, the want of bifcuits and brandy, cold,
wet, nakednefs, vermin, fear, and terror were not
the leaft caufes." In this condition they paffed
two months, the fport of wind? and waves, un-
F certain
■ e ••' -
j;    -       .   >    ' V , W& §
r- m&g,.
■ ft**1! #11
certain where they were, and what courfe to
purfue; at one time attempting to return to the
coaft of America, and at another fleering towards
At length, on the 5th of November, when their
water was nearly exhaufted, they were gratified
with the fight of land, which was fuppofed to be
Avatcha, though by their reckoning they were
between 550 and 560 latitude, or about 20 to the
north of that place. But finding from obfervation that their reckoning was nearly correct, they
perceived their miftake, and endeavoured to return to an ifland which they had paffed, and fuppofed to be Ifopa, which lies near the peninfula of Kamtchatka, to the north of Avatcha.
Towards evening they ftood off the land, to
avoid falling in with it in the night, which threatened to be flormy. It afterwards blew hard,
and as they were incapable of furling the fails,
the fhrouds of the main-mall were broken.
November 6. Lieutenant Waxel, and the
mate, Kytrof,. over-ruled Beering's opinion to
direct their courfe to Avatcha, and perfuaded
the crew to fleer towards the bay laft feen, by
affuring them that it was Kamtchatka, although
neither its pofition or appearance refembled any
part of that coaft, and it afterwards proved to be
Beering's Ifland. Thefe officers juftified this
meafure from the fcantinefs of water, of which
only FROM I7H  TO 1741.
only fix barrels remained; and by obtaining a
certificate from Steller of the fickly ftate of the
They accordingly ftood towards  the land,
without taking fufficidnt precautions ; for the officers were fo negligent, that none of them made
their appearance on deck for three hours.   And
though in confequence of Steller's reprefentation,
Beering ordered the lieutenant and mate to their
duty, they merely directed the fleerfman to approach the land.    8 Soon after fun-fet,  we,"
fays Steller,  c< anchored about a verft from the
fhore, in nine fathoms water, and within half-an-
hour, though the night was fine, and the moon
ilione extremely bright, a dreadful fweli arofe,
which beat the fhip about like a ball, broke one
of the cables, and we expected every moment to
be driven on fhore and dafhed to pieces.    Difc.
order and difmay inftantly fpread through the
whole crew, and the officers for a while were incapable of determining what meafures to purfue.
At length, by the advice of Lieutenant Offzin
and the boatfwain, they fuffered the veffel to
drive, and after lofing their fecond anchor, fortunately came into ftill-water, where they eaft
November 7. Steller was employed in packing
up his baggage, as heforefaw that the veffel would
be driven on fhore or dafhed to pieces by the
F* firft 68
»# 'i?lee>,.
firft ftorm. He then landed with Plenifner his
Coffac, and fome of the fick j they fhot feyerafc
moor-hens, fea-otters, and fea-hounds which they
dreffed, and fent to the commander and their
companions on board. The other officers, particularly Lieutenant Waxel, ftill flattered themfelves that the fhore on which they were driven,
was part of Kamtchatka; they were however,
not acquainted with the animal called the fea-
etter, whkh at firft was miftaken for a bear, and
afterwards for an hyaena. Towards evening the
party on fhore formed a hut of drift-wood, and
covered it with an old fail, in which they paffed
the night." From this place I fhall continue the
tranflation of Steller's Journal.
November 8. The weather was ftill agreeable.
M. Plenifner agreed with me this moaning, that
he would fhoot birds, and I fhould feek other
provifions; and at noon we were to meet at this
place, I went accordingly with my Coffac,
eaftward along the fhore, collected feveral natural curiofities, and hunted fea-otters; but my
Coffac fhot eight ftone-foxes, the tamenefs and
fatnefs of which aftonifhed me much. Towards
noon I returned to our hut, and after dinner
went with M. Plenifner and our Coffac along'
the fhore, weftward, to look for wood or
poles, but found nothing. We faw fome fea-
otters, and killed feveral ftone-foxes and moorhens.
wm; FROM   17'il   TO  1741
hens. In returning, we fat down at a little
rivulet, refrefhed ourfelves with tea, and thanked
God heartily that we had good water, ^nd ftood
again on firm land.
This day the fhip was fecured as much as pof-
fible, by cafting all the anchors^ fo the boat did
not come a-fhore. After fupper, as we were
fitting by a fire, a ftone-fox took away two moorhens in our prefence, which was the firft inftance
of thofe artful tricks and thefts committed by
thofe animaki
I encouraged my fick Coffac, who confidered
me as the caufe of his misfortune, and reproached
me for my curiofity which had brought him into
this trouble, and made the beginning of the en-
iking fellow fhip.—c< Be of good cheer," I faid,
" God will help us: if this is'not our country,
yet we have hopes to reach it. You fhall not
ftarve; if you cannot work and wait on me, I
VuH affift and ferve you. I know your integrity
and fidelity; all I have is yours, alk me only,
and I y?i\\ divide every thing with you." He
replied, " I am willing to ferve herjnajefty, but
you brought me into this mifery: who forced
you to go with thefe people? could you not
have enjoyed the good living at the Bolchaia
Keka?" His fincerity made me laugh heartily,
faying, " thank God we are both alive: as I
brought you into this mifery, you will, if God
F 3 helps
V St.- '"   JErf
N$B Sis
life* i%*§
helps us, have in me a conftant friend and benefactor. My intentions were good, Thomas!
let yours be the fame; you know not what might
have befallen you at home.5'
Meanwhile I entered into an engagement
with M. Plenifner to build a hut for our winter
refidence, and to afford each other mutual affiftance in cafe we had landed upon an ifland.
November 9. The weather being fine, we
made an excurfion to collect wood, and fixed on*
the fpot where we, with the reft of the crew,
afterwards built our huts: we alfo employed
ourfelves in hunting foxes, of which we killed
no lefs than fixty, with our hatchets and daggers.
Towards evening we returned to our old hut,
where feveral fick had been landed from the
November 10. The wind was eafterly, the'
weather clear in the forenoon, and cloudy in the
afternoon, but the night was fnowy and windy.
We tranfported all our baggage to the place
chofen the day before for building a hut, which
was at the diftance of a verft. In the mean
time more fick were brought on fhore, and
among thefe the commander, who paffed the
night under a tent, and furprifed us by his patience and re Agnation. He afked my opinion
of the country: I replied, " It cathnot be Kamtchatka, as the great number and tamenefs of the
».*." FROM   I7II   TO   I74I
animals plainly demonftrate that it is either very
thinly or not inhabited. It cannot however, be
far diftant, becaufe the vegetable productions are
fimilar to thofe of that peninfula, and none of
the American plants are found here. Moreover, I difcovered the cafement of a window of
Ruffian workmanfhip, probably drifted from
the Kamtchatka river. Should it, however, be
any part of tbe peninfula, it muft be Kronotfki
Nos, which I think doubtful from the following
circumftances; a part of a fox-trap, which I
difcovered on the fhore, was not formed with
iron teeth as in Kamtchatka, and I therefore infer
that it was brought from the coaft of America.
I Ukewife obferved a fpecies of fea animals
(manati) not known in the peninfula, and the
fogs which rife to the fouth feem to prove, that
there is no neighbouring land in that direction.'*
On thefe obfervations the commander only exclaimed; I Our veffel cannot be faved; God
preferve our long-boat 1"
After flipping with the commander, on the
moor-hens fhot by Plenifner, I told the furgeon* s-mate, Betge, that if he pleafed he might
join with us, for which he thanked me, and
we were now four in company. We went to
our new abode, fat by the fire, and fettled
our plan over a difh of tea. I then railed a
fmall hut, which I covered with my two great
F 4 coats iUfe
fit iISS-
ssf *n .•»„;.- .■
■S3-. few M
coats and an old blanket. The air-holes on
the fides were clofed with foxes which wev
had killed this day in great abundance. So
we went to reft, and M. Betge returned to the
commander. Near midnight, a violent wind,
accompanied with much fnow, tore off our
covering, and we ran towards the fhore tp collect wood, and brought it to a pit hollowed lite
a grave, capable of containing not more than
two- perfons. Having laid fome flicks acrofs
and covered it with our clothes, we made a
fire, warmed ourfelves, and paffed the night in
the pit, God be thanked, tolerably well. -
November 11. I went to the fhore and
caught a fea-dog, boiled its lard with peafe, and
fhared it with my three companions, who in
the mean time had made two fhovels, and began
to widen our pit. In the afternoon the Cap-
t^n Commander was brought on poles, and
lodgfed in a tent formed with a fail, at the place
we had firft chofen for our habitation. We
treated him and two other officers who came to
our pit with tea. The officers returned to the
fhip, and M. Kytrof propofed to Lieutenant
Waxel to pafs the winter on board, as being
more warm and comfortable than living in a
t,ent on fhore with a fcarcky of fuel: he came
a-fhore however the third day, and could not
be prevailed on to return to the fhip.    We now
ml FROM  f^ll TO I741
enlarged the pit wnieh formed our dwelling,
collected wood for a roof, and for boarding it
within. In the evening we made a flight roo£
and received into our dwelling Rofeling, gu&*
ner's-mate. At the fame time fome of the crew
who were capabM of working, dug a fquare pit
and covered it with double fails* for the ufe of
the fick.
November 12. We worked very hard to
complete our dwelling, and others following our
example made the third abode in the fame manner, which was named after its beginner (the
boatfwain) Alexei Iwanof. To-day many fick
were brought from the veffel, fome of whom
died as foon as they came ituo the air, other*
during the paffage in the boat, and fome on
reaching the fhore. We faw the moft difmal
and terrifying objects; the foxes mangled the
dead before they Could be buried, and were even
not afraid to approach the living and helpkfs,
who lay fcattered here and there, and fmell to
them like dogs. One exclaimed, that he was
perifhing /with cold; another complained of
hunger and thirft, as their mouths were fo much
affected by the fcurvy, that their gums grew over
their teeth like a fpunge. The ftone-foxes,
which fwarmed around our dwellings, became fo
bold and mifchievous as to carry away and deftroy different arttdes of provision and cioathing*
One &%■
VL*i   $
A   -A.
Miff 1 '-n-J I
One took a fhoe, another a boot, a third a glove,
and a fourth a coat; they even ftole the Von
implements. All our attempts to drive them
away were ineffectual, and all the punifh-
ments we inflicted on them ferved only to
increafe their audacity : they forced themfelves into our dwellings, and carried away
whatever they could find ; but their artful
and comical tricks diverted us in fpite of our
November 14. I went in the afternoon with
Plenifner and Betge on a hunting party : we
killed four fea-otters, of which we threw the
offal into a brook; the flefh, the fkins, and entrails we brought home, which we did not reach
till night. We made palatable food of the
livers, kidneys, hearts, and flefh; but we put no
value on the coftly fkins, and as we had no leifure
to dry and prepare them, they w7ere thrown
afide until they were damaged and gnawed by
the foxes. We now began to prize thofe articles
which we had not efteemed before, as hatchets,
knives, punches, needles, thread, twine, fhoes,.
fhirts, (lockings, poles, cords, Sec.: we were
fenfible that rank or learning would give us
here no preference, nor contribute to our maintenance, and therefore refolved to work without
compulfion. To-day I offered the commander
a young fea-otter, recommending him to have it
dreffed w)m
dreffed in different ways, as afubftitute for other
frefh meat. But he expreffed a great antipathy
to this kind of food, and preferred moor-hens, of
which we fent him more than he could confume.
At this period we were employed in conftruct-
ing our huts, and divided ourfelves into three
parties; the firft went to the veffel to land the fick
and provifions; the fecond drew large pieces of
^mber the diftance of four verfts ; but I and a
fick gunner remained at home. Befides performing the office of cook, I vifited the captain,
whofe two fervants could render him but little
affiftance, and attended the fick, fupplying them
with warm foup, and other comforts. This day
the dwellings being finifhed, we conveyed thither
many fick in the afternoon, who for want of
room lay promifcuoufly on the ground, with no
other covering but their clothes. They were
unable to affift each other; and nothing was
heard but cries and groans, accompanied with
imprecations on the authors of their mifery.
November 15. All the remaining patients
were landed. One of them called Boris Saend
we took into our abode, and he recovered in
three months. M. Kytrof alfo earneftly be-
fought us to admit him into our fociety, as he
was afraid to remain among the failors,who continually reproached and threatened-Aim ; but as
pur dwelling was full, and he was confidered as
* th#
H\ <-'■ I
the author of our misfortune, his requeft wjaSfBot
complied with.    In ^heenfuing days our labour
and wants increafed.    Lieutenant Waxel was
alfo landed, fo much afflicted with the fcurvy,
that we relinquifhed all hopes of his recovery:
he received  from us  all the  affiftance in our
power, and we anticipated his lofs as an incalculable misfortune, becaufe Kytrof, the next in
command, was fo detefted by all, that confufionr
and infubordination would have enfued.    We
built a feparate hut for him and fome other patients, and lodged him in the barrack till it was
finiihed.    At this time, the party difpatched to
examine the country returned, with the unplea-
fing intelligence that it was not connected with;
Kamtchatka to the weft ward, and that there were?
no traces of inhabitants.    We were alfo in continual apprehenfion  left   the  inceffant  ftorms
fhould ctrive our veffel to fea, and with it all our
provifions : for, on account of the high fea, we
were unable for feveral days to reach the fhig^
and in addition to our misfortunes, ten or twelve
of the crew fell fick in confequence of their repeated exertions to remove the provifions and
ftores; on the whole,  want, nakednefs,  ejfld,
ficknefs, impatience and defpair were our daily
t     At length, towards the end  of November;
a ftorm fortunately ftranded   the veffel, befc,
ter frfcOM I7H  TO  I74t
ter than perlaps human fkill could have effected,
and revived our hopes of preserving the prow-
fions and materials, as we were no longer compelled to wade through the fea ; and we now
repofed ourfelves a few days to recover our
ftrength, abftaining from all work except do-
sneftic occupations.
During this temporary refpite, three perfons
were again difpatched to explore the country
towards the eaft ; for all hopes were not yet
relinquifhed that we were on fome part of
In the midft of thefe flattering expectations,
jeveral perfons expired on fhore ; among them
we greatly regretted the experienced pilot, Andrew Haffelberg, who had ferved at fea more
than fifty years, and continued till tfee age of
feventy in an unremitting difcharge of his duty.
■Befides him died two grenadiers, a gunner, the
mailer's fervant, and a mariner.
On the 8th of December Captain Beering
Hied, two days after we loft the mate, Chi*
taingof, and on the 8th of January Enfign La--
gunof, who was the thirtieth and laft of our company that died on the ifland.
As the lamentable end of the commander
made different impreffions on different people, I
cannot omit a few particulars relative to his
efcaracter and life,
\  er«
1 -^
l*r. If!
'ee-- Illlp'i
IP «
up #- ' :
f IP
t ■.■■!'
Vitus Beering was a native of Denmark; he
was an upright and pious Chriftian, a friendly
quiet man, and univerfally beloved.    After two
voyages to the Indies, he entered in 1704 into
the Ruffian fervice as lieutenant, and in  1741
-was for his merit advanced to the rank of captain commander.    He was employed in feveral
expeditions, particularly the two voyages from
Kamtchatka.      Impartial  perfons muft  allow>
that in this fatal voyage he  ufed his   utmoft
endeavours to perform his duty; he often complained that his ftrength was no longer adequate
to fuch arduous and diftant expeditions,   and
frequently  lamented that a younger and more
active perfon had not  been appointed  to the
command.    He was more diftinguifhed for prudence and circumfpection than for promptnefs
of refolution,  or  activity of enterprife.    His
principal defect was extreme mildnefs, and too
great facility in adopting the opinions of others,
which occafioned the infubordination and want
of difcipline fo fatal to the expedition.    As he
frequently expreffed  his gratitude  to the Almighty for his former fuccefs and recent happi-
nefs, his death was more lamentable, particularly
when it is confidered, that he might have fur-
vived had he reached Kamtchatka, and enjoyed
the comforts of a warm dwelling and frefh provifions;  whereas hunger, thirft, cold, fatigue
TBM FROM   I7II   TO   I744
and defpondency brought him to the grave. He
had been long afflicted with a tertian ague, and
a fwelling in his feet, which being driven by
cold to his vital parts, terminated in a gangrene.
He difplayed the moft affecting refignation to
the will of the Supreme Being, and enjoyed his
underftanding and fpeech to the laft moment.
He was convinced that we were driven on an unknown land, yet would not terrify others by declaring his opinion, but cherifhed their hopes,
"and encouraged their exertions. He died on
the 8th of December, and was buried the enfu-
ing day, according to the proteftant ritual. His
body was placed between his adjutant, a com-
miffary, and two grenadiers, and we erected a
crofs over the grave to indicate the place of interment, and ferve as a mark that we had taken
poffeflion of the country.
Soon after the death, of our commander, the
whole crew were fheltered from the feverity
of the winter in fubterraneous dwellings, contiguous to each other, which were called the
barrack, the hut of the lieutenant, mine, Alexei
Iwanof's, and Luka Alexeef's.
On Chriftmas day moft of the crew were recovered by the excellent water and the flefh of
fea animals, and turned their principal attention
to the means neceflary for their deliverance.
One of their chief employments was to hunt
fea 8o
E§ $$f. ■
ii itet**1'1''.;
./A A AAA?':
. -IH/, ..-;:V"P:;!
fea anipals for the purpofe of procuring food,
and of faving their meal; which was diftributed
with the ftricteft oeconoray. From the middle
of November to the beginning of May, the
^monthly allowance for each perfon was thirty
pounds, and for the firft two montHs fevejj|l|
pounds of barley. In May and June it was reduced to twenty pounds, and totally withheld during July and Auguft, as twenty-five pood were
referved for the voyage to Kamtchatka, of which
twenty remained on our arrival at Avatcha.
As the meal, however, had been kept for three
years in leather bags, and had been drenched
with the fait water^ in which the gunpowder and
Other articles wens diffolved, the tafte was extremely naufeous; and until we were habituated,
to the ufe of it, produced difagreeable effects.
For fome time we prepared the meal by
making fmall cakes, and frying them with train
oil, or the fat of the fea cow; but having erected
two ovens before our departure^ we once more
^ggjoyed the luxury of eating bread. We had
®q difficulty in procuring food from the fea ani-
mals, which abounded in this part of the ifland,
until the crew imprudently drove them from,
the neighbourhood, by wantonly and unneceffa-
rily annopng them; hence our labour wTas con-v
liderably increafed, and we were compelled to
&unt at a great diftance from our habitations.
m w.
To fupply ourfelves with fuel, was likewife
a confiderable labour, as the ifland produced
nothing but willow bufhes, and the drift-wood
was often deeply buried in the fnow. Till the
end of March we were compelled to bring it
from  the diftance of  even fifteen   or fixteen
! verfts. Our load on thefe expeditions amounted
from fixty to eighty pounds, befides our hatchets
and kettles, ahd the neceflary implements for
mending our fhoes and clothes. In April,
however, we were relieved from this labour by
the thaw, and breaking up of the veffel.
A regular diftribution of our labour was alfo
[eftablifhed by our party, and afterwards adopted
by all; a German and a Ruffian daily hunted,
[others were employed in fetching wood, and a
(German and Ruffian ftaid at home to cook for
[their companions.
On the 26th of December the fecond party
[fent   on difcovery   returned   with   the  report
lat we were upon an ifland, the coaft of which
Ihey had traced weft ward ; but from the oars,
)artsof fifh barrels, and other articles drifted on
he ftrand, they inferred that Kamtchatka was at
10 great diftance.
January 29. Our company killed the firft
ea-lion, the flefh of which was delicious, re-
Cm bling veal, and the fat was like the marrow
tf an ox.    On the ill of February, a violent
G north-
«jft *
north-weft wind and high tide drove our veffel
into fuch a fituation that we flattered ourfelves
] we fhould float it at high water, could we recover
our anchors; but on examination we found it
filled with fand. We were however confoled,
for this difappointment, as it diminifhed the
labour of breaking up the veffel.
In fpring, the fnow being melted, we could
proceed over land to the fouth, where the otters
and fea-dogs had not yet been frightened, and
were found in great numbers. We often vifited
thefe parts, notwithftanding the diftance, and
fteepnefs of . the mountains. During one of
thefe expeditions we nearly loft a third of our
party. The ill of April, the gunner Rofdig,
the furgeon'smatevBetge, the midfhipman Sind,
and a Coffac went on a hunting excurfion, and
were overtaken towards the evening with fuch a
violent hurricane that no one could Hand upon
his legs, nor fee a ftep before him, which was
followed at night by a fall of fnow not lefs than
fix feet in depth. After lying the whole night
under the fnow, they had the greateft difficulty
in working their way through it, to reach the
fhore; but the midfhipman had left them, and
feemed to be loft. During this time we were
under the greateft alarm left our companions
hadperifhed, but fortunately we had fcarcely
opened a paffage to our hut, when three of the
people FROM   I7H    TO   1741
people arrived benumbed and fpeechlefs, and
the furgeon's-mate was quite blind. We inftantly undreffed them, covered them with feather beds, and recovered them with tea. About
an hour afterwards three of our men brought
back the midfhipman whom they difcovered
wandering near the fhore. Having fallen during
the night into a brook his cloaths and his limbs
were frozen, and we were apprehenfive left his
hands and feet would mortify; but he gradually
recovered, from the ftrength of his conftitution,
and the furgeon's-mate regained his fight in a
On the 25th of February the mildnefs of the
feafon induced us to difpatch the mate Yufchin ;
.with four men to explore the country weftward,
but in fix days they only reached the northern
point of land fixty verfts from our abode, and
after amufing themfelves with hunting beavers
they returned on the 8th of March, with a falfe
account that the fleep rocks extending into the
fea had prevented them from proceeding.
On the 10th of March it was refolved to
fend a party with Alexei Iwanof, one of the
failorSj by'Lefnaya Retfchka over the land to
the fouth, and then along the fhore till he
fhould reach the end of the ifland or the continent, as we then thought we were ftranded on
Kronozki   Nofs.      Thefe  fcouts  began  their
jour- IP
journey the 15th of March, but returned unexpectedly the 19th alfo with the report that they
could not proceed farther fouthward on account
of the precipitous rocks. During this expedition they difcovered fome of the pieces of the
floop which was built the laft winter at Avatcha,.
which the carpenter Akalof, recollected; they
alfo faw an animal which from their defcription.
appeared to be a fea-bear.
On the 2 2d of March, the fame party were
ordered to proceed to the northernmoft point,
and from thence fouthward, unlefs they fhould
meet with infurmountable obftacles : in that cafe
they were to return to the north, or by croffing
the mountain, continue till they reached the
continent or difcovered the termination of the
ifland. In the latter cafe they^ fhould inftantly
return and profecute the building of the veffel;
but fhould they reach the continent or Kamtchatka, half of the party were to proceed to
Avatcha, and the remainder bring the information to our abode.
I, together with three of my companions,
went with this party, and croffed the country for .
the firft time near Lefnaya Retschka. There
we killed feveral fea-otters, which were fo nu- I
merous that we might have flaughtered a hundred, had we not been more defirous of their
flefh than of their coftly fkins.
say?*! m
FROM   I7H   TO   I74I
On the 5th of April, during a gleam of favourable weather, Plenifner, and myfelf, with
my Coffac and a fervant of Beering, went on a
hunting expedition. Having killed as many
fea-otters as we were able to carry, we made a
fire in a cliff, where we propofed to pafs the
night. At midnight a violent hurricane arofe,
and the fnow fell in fueh quantities that we fhould
have been buried had we not run continually
backwards and forwards. In the morning,
after a long and fruitlefs fearch for fhelter, we
refigned ourfelves to our fate; but the Coflac
fortunately difcovered a large cavern, which
feemed to have been formed by an earth-
quake. Here we entered with our provifion
and wood. This cave afforded a fecure retreat
from the weather, contained a cavity in which we
could hide our provifions from the depredations
of the flone-foxes, and was provided with an
aperture which ferved the purpofe of a chimney.
This cave jmd the bay were named in compliment to me. The cavern was inhabited by numerous foxes, which retired on our approach
through the chimney ; but the fmoke from our
fire caufed fuch fneezing and fpitting amongft
them as gave rife to no fmall diverfion ; but at
night they occafionally returned into the cave,
and anmfed themfelves with taking our caps
and other fimilar gambols.    On the 4th we re-
G 3 turned
luSkisTSaP ft J*t
turned to our abode with a rich booty, and
were received with great delight by our companions, who thought us loft.
Some days before, a hunting party was undertaken by the mate Yufchin, three men, and the
fhip carpenter, (who had engaged to build a new
veffel from the wreck) and upon whom therefore
all our hopes of deliverance depended. Having
fought a retreat from the violence of the ftorm
in a cave near the fhore, the high water confined them feven days without nourifhment and
fuel, and they did not return till the ninth day,
when we thought them either drowned or buried
in the fnow, which fell from the mountains.
On coming home the 8th of April, we heard
the agreeable news, that this ufeful perfon was
returned: the mariner and his party had alfo arrived on the 6th of April, with the information
that we were really upon an ifland, and that
they defcried high mountains to the north-eaft.
According to the latitude I think this high land
could not be confidered as part of America, but
as another ifland unknown at Kamtchatka *.
As we had noother chance of reaching Kamtchatka than by building a fmall veffel, we fub-
fcribed on the gth of April the following refolu-
tions.    l. The twelve men   who could work
* Steller was in the right; for this high land seen to the
N, E, was Copper Island.—Pallas.
with FROM   I71I   TO   I74I
with the hatchet fhould' affift Ihe carpenter.
2. Yhe others (except the two officers and myfelf) fhould alternately hunt and work. 3. The
provifions fhould be depofited in one place, and
a   non-commiffioned  officer
fhould give the cook of each party his fhare,
that the carpenter might fuffer no want." On
the following day the firft preparations were
made ; the veffel was cleared, and the materials
put on fhore. Whet-ftones were cut and put
into troughs, the inftruments ground, the forge
conftructed, iron claws, wedges and hammers
forged, wood collected and charcoal made, which
laft occafioned the greateft delay.
As the diftance of the place where we hunted
was eighteen or twenty verfts, we were greatly
relieved by catching two fea-bears, weighing
twenty pood each, two or three of which were
fufficient for a week's provifion. We were ftill
more benefited by a frefh whale thrown up five
verfts weftward from our dwelling on the 20th
of April; it was fifteen fathoms long, and produced fo much oil and lard that fome barrels of
it remained at our departure. The flefh of the
young fea-bears and of female bears maintained
us during May and part of June,
The 5th of May the beginning of our veffel,
and future deliverance was made, by laying the-
ftern and fore-pofts of the keel, which was ce-
G 4 lebrated ii
IftVw IP**;"*?
K w 1> ;
iJ-B;' ■.'    liv"*   ;1*.|
B^t iF«&;
j;- i:;;ve-:.j;;
e;e i'f' ;h-a
lebrated at the invitation of Lieutenant Waxel,
for want of other liquor, with Mongolian Saturn,
or tea-foup, prepared with flour and butter.
The mild weather in the fpring having dif-
folved the fnow, much drift wood was found on
fhore, which furnifhed charcoal fufficient for the
forge; we alfo procured many herbs and roots,
which afforded us an agreeable and wholefome
change of diet. On the nth of May and following days, it not only thawed, but the continual rain with fouth-eaft winds caufed fuch an
inundation that the rivulets overflowed our
fubterraneous dwellings to the depth of two
feet; we therefore built fummer huts above
ground. The conftruction of our veflel was
delayed on this account, for a few days, but was
again refumed and our ardour increafed, as we
hoped to fail for Kamtchatka in Auguft. The
maintenance of the people being facilitated by
the flefh of fea-cows, which we caught in greatv
abundance, we were no longer under the ne-
ceffity of hunting, and the men were thus relieved from undertaking troublefome joumies
over the mountains, without fhoes or clothes.
By the conftant exertions, and encouragement of Lieutenant Waxel, the veffel, which
was thirty-fix feet long in the keel, and forty-two
over the flern *, was ready to be launched in July.
* So in. the original, but probably an error.
W&&. FROM I7II  TO  I74I
From that time to the 13 th of Auguft we
were employed in preparing the tackling, and
building the frame for launching the veffel,
which was a difficult undertaking, as we were ill
provided with materials, particularly wood,
Which was conveyed from the moft diftant parts
of the fhore. Mean-while fome raifed a flore-
houfe to preferve the remainder of the materials ; fome built an oven, and baked bifcuits
for the voyage; others prepared barrels ; fome
took foundings, and not a fingle perfon was idle
in promoting our deliverance from this defert
ifle. f     J|i|    ¥       -|fe$
On the 8th of Auguft, every thing was in order and ready for the voyage. After offering
up public prayers for fuccefs in our enterprife,
we gave the veffel the name of St. Peter, and all
affifted in launching it. But to our great con-
flernation the veffel hung on the flocks, and it
was not without difficulty that we floated it the
following day. We continued our exertions
night and day; on the nth the veffel was mafted
and rigged; then the water and provifions were
put on board, and finally the remains of the §
baggage. Mean-while a fmall boat was conftructed by the carpenter. Our provifion confifted of four pounds of butter for each man,
twenty-five pood of rye-meal, five barrels of
pickled fea-cow or manati flefh, two pood of
peafe, and a barrel of pickled beef, which not-
withftanding our neceffities had been faved for
our return.
Auguft 13, we quitted our dwellings with
mixed fenfations of hope and fear, and repaired
to the veffel, which was to carry us home, or
terminate our exiftence. The veffel was fo fmall
that the crew were obliged to creep over each
other as they lay down in their refpective places;
Lieutenant Waxel, M. Kytrof, I, and the fon of
the lieutenant, had the beft birth in the cabin ;
the other forty-two men occupied the hold,
which was fo full of water barrels, provifions
and baggage that there was fcarcely room to lie
down. The crew being divided into three
watches, two places were affigned to three men ;
but as the veffel was ftill too fmall we threw beds
and clothes into the fea. We had fcarcely
reached the veffel before we obferved the ftone- v
foxes bufy in examining our dwellings, and dividing the remains of the provifions which we
left behind.
Auguft 14. Having addreffed a fervent prayer
for the affiftance of the Almighty, we weighed
anchor, and as the weft wind was favourable to
pafs the eaft point of the ifland, we chofe the
direct courfe to Avatcha, though the mouth of
the Kamtchatka river was twice as near, and our
veffel ill calculated  to   fuftain   an   autumnal
ftorm. FROM  I7II   TO  I74I
ftorm. We advanced fo far with a moderate
wind, that in the evening we reached the fouth-
jeaft part of our ifland. The weather being pleafant, we paffed the day in coafting the ifle, and
recollecting the names we had given to each vale
I and mountain, which we had fo often, and with
fo much difficulty traverfed, in fearch of provifions
Late in the evening we were a-breaft of the
fartheft point of land, and on Sunday the 15th,
the wind being moderate in the forenoon, we
ftill defcried the fouth part of the ifland, which,
as the wind increafed, we loft fight of towards
night. We continued now fleering between
weft and fouth to Avatcha, with favourable wind
and weather. But at midnight we were much
terrified, as we perceived water in the veffel,
which being crowded, it was difficult to find the
leak. Having omitted to place kettles under
the pumps, they were foon choaked by the chips
in the hold, and the danger increafed every moment, the wind being high and the veffel weakly
ftuilt. In this alarming fituation the fails were
furled, and the place cleared; fome bailed out
the water, and others threw the balls and cartridges overboard. Fortunately the carpenter
fucceeded in difcovering and flopping the leak,
and we were providentially faved.
Auguft 16.    We purfued our courfe, and
#? it! t
Kj    :;.-,
Sew?  IttTirT^ii'-'
E$ PILftsn
fc;e- !e5e'A:
:*sii ■
IP' !
h e   ; --- -
L ■"'•;-■&:.'!! i
afl; •
early on Tuefday the 17th faw the continent ol
Kamtchatka. We made the land near Cape
Kronozkoi, but the weather being foggy we did
not fee it till we were within a mile of the fhore.<
It was notwithftanding, refolved to fleer for
the harbour from which we were not lefs thanl
thirty miles. On account of contrary winds and
calms nine days were fpent in tacking, and it
was not till the night of the 26th of Auguft,
after continually rowing for twenty-four hours,
that we came into the bay at night, and entered
on the 21ft in the evening the long wifhed for
Notwithftanding our deliverance and happy
arrival, the accounts received from a Kamtcha-
dal at the entrance gave us great affliction.
Being fuppofed either dead or fhipwrecked, the
greater part of our property had fallen into the
hands of ftrangers. Mean-while we were fo ac-
cuftomed to mifery, that inftead of new projects
we only thought of continuing our ufual manner
of living, and confidered our prefent fituation as
a dream. After offering up on the following
day hearty thanks to Heaven, in a common
prayer, for our miraculous prefervation and
happy return, the fea-officers refolved to proceed immediately to Okotfk. But I took my
leave of them, and walked thirty miles to Bol-
cheretfkoi Oftrog, where I fafely arrived in the
bofora FROM I7II  TO I74I.
bofom of my family the 5th of September, and
celebrated the birth day of our moft gracious
emprefs. After fome weeks the report reached
Bolcheretfk that the veflel appointed for Okotfk
was driven back into the harbour: but as the
commander neglected to fend the account of
our return by the galliot which failed after to
Okotfk, eight months elapfed before it was
known at Peterfburg that we were not dead.
>EO*s Ipl
Remarks on Steller's Narrative, and Conjectures
relative to the Parts of America touched at by
Beering and Tchelekof.
IS •SB1'.*   / *-ZS£&-i8
According to  Steller's narrative, that Beer-
ing fitft difcovered the continent of America in
latitude 590. and fome minutes, and longitude 1
490. or five hundred dutch miles, from Avatcha,
or 216°. from Ferro.
Should this computation be deemed accurate,
it would carry them no farther than that part of
the American continent which lies near Shoal
Nefs, considerably to the weft of Cook's River.
There was probably little deficiency in the latitude, but from the authority of Steller himfelf
we may infer that the longitude was extremely
erroneous; for he obferves many errors concerning the diftance of the two continents muft
have occurred, as no notice was taken of the impediments arifing from currents; it likewife appears, that no aftronomical obfervations were
made; but the longitude computed from the
fhip's reckoning. Hence Muller fays, Beering
difcovered the continent of America in 580. 28'.
latitude, and 500. eaft longitude from Avatcha
accord- FROM I7II TO I74I,
according to computation, and Tfchirikoff in 560.
latitude, and 6o°. longitude; but he fuppofes
that both may have been miftaken, for if we
compare their voyage thither, with their return,
it feems that* Captain Beering was on the coaft
of America, in longitude 6o°. from Avatcha, or
2360. from Fero, and Tfchirikof in 650. from
Avatcha, or 241°. from Fero.
Confidering thefe uncertain data, and the
fcanty information contained in Muller's Account, it is no wonder that doubts fhould be
entertained, whether Beering and Tfchirikof
reached America; and that fince later difcoveries have removed thofe doubts, fubfequent navigators have not afcertained the precife parts
which they reached. For fome of the late Ruffian
navigators lay down the utmoft limits of Beering's Voyage, too near the weftern fhore of
Montague ifland, at the entrance of Prince William's Sound, place Mount St. Elias upon that
ifland, and fuppofe the part of the continent firft^
difcovered by Beering, to be that land which lies
between Prince William's Sound, and Cook's
Inlet; but this fuppofition is wholly incompatible with both Muller's and Steller's Narrative.
Captain  Cook, after candidly allowing   the
difficulty of afcertaining the difcoveries of the
Ruffians from a confufed and uncertain narrative, conjectures that Beering reached the con*
tinent a little to the northward of Cape Fair-
weather, where he perceived ah appearance of a
bay and an ifland off the fouth point of it, that
was covered with wood. He confiders this bay
as fituated in latitude 590. 18'. and longitude
2210. eaft from Greenwich, and diftinguilhes it
by the name of Beering's bay: the high mountains which he faw in 58°. 53'. at forty leagues
diftance, he calls Beering's Mount St. Elias.
Vancouver however afferts that no fuch bay
or ifland exifts in that latitude, and that Cook
was led into the miftake by the great diftance
at which he faw the coaft. He therefore places
Beering's Bay a little farther to the north weft,
at Dixon's Admiralty Bay*, in latitude 59°. 33V
and longitude 2200. 30'. weft from Greenwich.
He cenfurCs Portlock and Dixon for laying
down Beering's and Admiralty Bays as two bays,
declares that the minute examination with which
he furveyed the coaft, enabled him to affert,
that between Capes Suckling and Fairweather,
Admiralty Bay is the only bay, which according to Kytrof* s defcription, "affords between
Called by Perouse, Baie de Monti.    Tome 2, p. 160,
4to. edition.
iflands FROM    I7II    TO   I74I.
iflands a convenient anchoring place, fecure from
all winds;" that its latitude accords nearly with
that affigned by the Ruffians to Beering's difcovery,'' hence he fuppofes it to be the, fame;
as that defcribed by Cook, cajls it Beering's
Bay, and confiders a cove denominated by
Dixon, Port Mulgrave, as the anchoring, place
explored by Kytrof. But notwithftanding the
minutenenefs of Vancouver's examination, Cook
is juftified in placing a bay which he calls Beering's Bay, between Admiralty Bay and Cape
Fairweather; for exactly in the latitude and
longitude mentioned by Cook, La Peroufe
difcovered a bay with, one or two iflands off
its fouth point, into which a river empties
itfelf, called by him Beering's Riven*
But it fufficiently appears from Skier's Narrative, that neither of thefe bays could be that
difcovered by Beering and explored by Kytrof;
for neither of them is diftinguifhed by that long,
narrow,.and mountainous ifland lying off the
continent, which was examined by Steller, and
is too remarkable to be overlooked.
In fact, the only bay hitherto difcovered between Prince William's Sound and Cape Fair-
weather,  which   anfwers   Steller's   defcription,
W ' 'rSf
* Voyage de la Perouse, torn. 2, p. 142,—144.
H and \
and by its pofition fuits the courfe of the voyage
is Cook's Comptroller's Bay, fituated near the
latitude of 6o°. and longitude 216°. 20'. eaft from
Greenwich, or 234°. from Fero.    At the moutn
of this bay is a long narrow and mountainous
ifland,  called by Cook, Kaye's Ifland, which is
feparated from the eaftern extremity  of Cape
Sucfiittg, by a ftrait about a mile and a halP
broad, with a fmaller ifland towards the weft, denominated by Vancouver Wingham's Ifland, and
between which there is good anchorage. Towards
the entrance of the bay are feveral rocky iflets;
within are many fmall iflands, and a large river
empties itfelf towards the north-weftern extremity.    Vancouver  afferts,   that  Comptroller's
Bay, and Kaye's Ifland, could not be the places
firft difcovered by Beering, becaufe cc that bay is
rendered inacceffible by fhoals, and incapable of
affording any flicker  to   fhipping."     But  he
makes this affertion without fufficient evidence,
and the furvey of thofe parts taken by Mr. Puget,
undet his orders, proves that there was a good
paffage between Wingham's and Kaye's Ifland,
and the continent, and good anchorage in the vicinity of both thefe, iflands; there is no reafon
therefore to fuppofe that Beering's veffel, whicha
only drew nine feet water, could not have paffed
the fhoal into the bay, for Mr, le Mefurier, who
ml founded FROM  I7II TO 1^41.
kmded the paffage, found at leaft 2^ fathoms
I water at the edge of the fhoal. The affertion
at it is incapable of affording fhelter to fliip-
ng can only be proved from experience, and
pok defcribes it as covered from almofl all
\'nds. Mr. Puget found excellent anchorage
the eaft fide of Wingham's Ifland, and the
ace where the Chatham anchored off Kaye's
[and, was well protected from the moft prevail-
t winds. It is not probable, therefore, when we
mfider the form of the bay, and the protection
brded by Kaye's and Wingham's Iflands^-and
[pit of land extending from Cape Suckling to
p north-weft, that it fhoukl not afford protec-
hn to a fmall veffel like Beering's, between the
tirids, which according to Cook it contains,
be afpect of the country, par try low and
|d fandy, partly elevated tracts of thick foreft,
Id rifing into mountains covered with fnow,
[fwers to the defcription of Steller, and the
[ipendous fummit of Mount St. Elias, refem-
p the mountain noticed by Steller, as the
bheft he had ever feen, and which he difcerned
: the diftance of fixteen dutch miles from
lid. Cook obferved Mount St. Elias at the
Iftance of forty leagues, and Vancouver fays,
I till eleven at night Mount St. Elias was yet
Ithin  our vifible horizon,  appearing like a
H 2 lofty
l 1
jgO? :*£=:ee:e'
ii lip'
lofty mountain, although at the diftance of on
hundred ant} fifty geographical miles*.''
After endeavouring to reconcile the accoun'
of Muller and Steller, and comparing their nai
ratives with Cook's and Vancouver's journals,
am induced to conjecture, that Beering firft di
covered the continent of America in the neigl
bourhood of Kaye's Ifland, and after much oj
pofition from contrary winds, anchored eitb<
between Wingham's and Kaye's Ifland, or b(
tween Kaye's Ifland and Cape Suckling. The
remained only one day on this fpot, durir.
which Steller explored Kaye's Ifland, an
Kytrof difcovered the anchorage in the ba]
Kaye's Ifland was probably the Cape St. Elgj
Sailing from Kaye's Ifland, they conti|uiel
along the coaft until they felfin with the far
* Vol. 3, p. 210.
I am informed by Mr. Menzies, who accompanied Vai
couv&r, that according to geometrical observations taken la
the commander of the Spanish expedition, it was 2,792 tofei
in height, ©r 16,75.2 French feet; but according to Dagel
the geographer, who accompanied La Perouse, 1,980, <
11,88.0 French feet.—Voyage de la Perouse, torn. 2, p. 14
If we credit the Spanish observations, it exceeds the heigl
of Mont Blanc by 2,406 French feet, if Dagelet's, it is low<
by 4,8/2 French feet.—(See Travels in Switzerland, Le
ter 3(5). An interesting.view of this stupendous mountaii
which seems wholly covered with snow, is given in.V&
couver's Voyage, Vol. 3, p. 204.
^$® bant
p!|ll$ FROM   I7II    TO   1741
ank, which, according to Vancouver, ftretches
jrom the north eaftern point of Hinchinbrook
Hand to  Cape   Suckling.    Steering  inftantly
outh to avoid this fhoal, they miffed the enhance  of Prince William's Sound,  and fail-
ng through the open fea for feveral days, an-
jhored under a woody ifland, tolerably large,
vhich Beering called Toomanoi Oftrofor Foggy
Ifland, and which was probably that lying in la-
itude 560. 10'. and longitude 2020. 45'. eaft from
reenwich.  Directing their courfe due weft, they
lifcovered?that land in $6°. latitude which is now
ailed Alafka.    Being prevented from running
ither north or weft by the prolongation of the
bontinent, they failed fouth and fouth-weft, and
became entangled among the Schumagin Iflands,
hich are fituated inlatitude 550.25'. When they
jiad cleared thefe iflands, which employed them
feveral days, they feem to have paffed fouth of
pe Aleutian and Fox Iflands, occafionally dif-
covering land, which they confidered as the continent, and after being driven about by violent
ftorms, miftook their courfe, and  were fhip-
wrecked on Beering's Ifland.
mi'*' ' e--; ' •
We? 1^
1 FROM I74I TO  177?,
From 1741 to 1778,
Conquefl of Siberia—Commencement of t\e N&tp
Difcoveries—Their Prpgrefs—Encouraged by
the Emprefs—Pofition of the New-difcovered
I/lands. HI
AThirft after riches incited the Spaniards to
the difcovery of America, and turned the
attention of other maritime nations to that quarter ; and the fame paffion occafioned, about the
middle of the fixteenth century, the difcovery
and conqueft of Northern Afia, a countryx
before unknown to Europeans. The foundation of dais conqueft was laid by the celebrated
H 4 Yer- f
Yermac*, a&the head of a band of adventiirers,
lefs civilized, but lefs inhuman than the conquerors of America. By the acceffion of this
vaft territory, now known by the name of Siberia, the Ruffians acquired an extent of empire
never before attained by any nation.
The firft project for making difcoveries in
that tempeftuous fea, which lies between Kamtchatka and America, was conceived and planned
by Peter I. the greateft fovereign who ever fat
upon the Ruffian throne, until it was adorned by
Catherine the fecond. The nature and completion of this project under his immediate fuccef-
fors are well known to the public from the relation of the celebrated Muller. No fooner
had Beering and Tchirikof opened their way to
iflands abounding in valuable furs, than private
merchants engaged with ardor in fimilar expeditions ; and, within a period of ten years, more
important difcoveries were made by individuals,
at their own private coft, than had been hitherto
effected by all the expenfive efforts of the
Soon after the return of Beering's crew, the
inhabitants of Kamtchatka ventured over to the
ifland, on which Beering was fhipwrecked and
* The reader will find an account of the conquest of
Siberia, related in the subsequent part of this work,
died, FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
tfied, where fea-otters and other^Tea-animals
reforted in great numbers. Mednoi OJlrof, or
Copper Ifland, which takes that appellation from
large maffes of native copper found upon the
beach, and which is feen from Beering's Ifle, was
an eafy and fpeedy difcovery.
Thefe two fmall uninhabited fpots were for
fome time the only iflands known until a fcarcity
of land and fea-animals occafioned other expeditions. Several of the veffels fent out upon
thefe voyages were driven by flormy weather to
the fouth-eaft; by which means the Aleutian
Ifles, fituated about the 195th * degree of longitude, and but moderately peopled, were firft
From 1745, when thefe iflands were nrft
vifited, until 1750, when the firft tribute of furs
"was brought to Okotfk, the-government was
not fully informed of their difcovery. In that
year, Lebedef was commander of Kamtchatka.
From 1755 to 1760, Captain Theredof and
Lieutenant Kafhkaref were his fucceffors.    In
* The author reckons, throughout this treatise, the longitude from the first meridian of the isle of Fero. The longitude
.and latitude, which he gives to the Fox Islands, correspond
.exactly with those in the general map of Russia. The longitude of Beering's Island, Copper Island, and of the Aleutian
v Isles,, are somewhat different. See advertisement relating to
the Charts.
176.0, Feodpr Ivanovitch Soimonof, governor
of Tobolfk, turned his attention to thofe iflands;
and, the fame year, Captain Rtiftfhef, at Okotfk,
inftructed Lieutenant Shmaleff, the fame officer
who was afterwards commander in Kamtchatka,
to promote expeditions in thofe feas.
The prefent Emprefs (to whom every cir-
cumftance which contributes to aggrandize the^
Ruffian empire is an object of attention) has
jgiven new life to thefe difcoveries. The merchants who engaged in them have been ani-
mated by rewards, and the importance and true
pofition of the Ruffian iflands have been afcertained by an expenfive voyage * made by order
of the crown.
Meanwhile, we may reft affured, that feveral
modern geographers have erred in advancing
America too much to the weft, and in queftion*
ing the extent of Siberia eaftwards, as laid down
by the Ruffians. It appears, indeed, evident,
that the accounts and even conjectures of MuL*
ler, concerning the pofition of thofe diftant regions, are more and more confirmed by facts;
in the fame manner as the juftnefs of his fuppo-
* The -author here alludes to  the secrets expedition of
Captain Krenitzin and Levashef, whose journal and chart
were sent, by order of the Empress of Russia, to Dr. Robert
en, and- are given in a subsequent chapter of this work.
fition FROM   I741   TO   1778*
% OT
fition concerning the coaft of the fea of Okotfk*
has been lately eftablifhed. With refpect to the
extent of Siberia, it appears almoft beyond a
doubt, from the moft recent obfervations, that
its eaftern extremity is fituated beyond 2000.
of longitude. In regard to the weftern coaft of
America, all the navigations to the new-difcovered iflands evidently fhew, that between
50 and 6o°. of latitude, that continent advances
no where nearer to Afia than the coafts touched
at by Beering and Tchirikof, or about 2360. of
As to the new-difcovered iflands, no credit
muft be given to a chart publilhed in the Geographical Calender of St. Peterfburg for 1774;
nor is the antient chart of the difcoveries, publifhed by the Imperial Academy, which feems
to have been drawn up from mere reports, more
deferving of attention.
The late navigators give a far different defcription of the northern Archipelago. From
tfoeir accounts we learn, that Beering's Ifland is
fixated due eaft from Kamtchatkoi Nofs, in the
* Muller formerly conjectured, tijat the epast of the sea
of Qkotsk stretched south-west towards the river Ud, and
from thence to the mouth of the Amoor south-east; and the
truth of this conjecture has been since confirmed by a coast-
jag voyage made by Captain Synd.
185th «?£ ^..'=A' e-
fp  K» A" ..
13 ■
■:%-: eeee:;e':-
Si IPfll
If i
eee,e :
185th degree of longitude. Near it is Copper
Ifland; and, at fome diftance from them, eaft-
fouth-eaft, are three fmall iflands, named by the
inhabitants, Attak, Semftfhi, and Shemiya: thefe
are properly the Aleutian ifles; they ftretch
from weft-north-weft towards eaft-fouth-eaft, in
the fame direction as Beering's and Copper
Iflands, in the longitude of 1950. and latitude
54°- . \
To the north-eait, at the diftance  of fix or
eight hundred verfts, lies another group of fix or
more iflands, known by the name of the Andrea-
no fffkie Oftrova.
South-eaft, or eaft-by-fouth of thefe, at the
diftance of about fifteen degrees, and north by
eaft of the Aleutian, begins the chain of Lyffie
Oftrova, or Fox Iflands: this chain of rocks
and ifles ftretches eaft-north-eaft between 56
and 6i°. of north latitude, from 2110. of longitude moft probably to the continent of America;
and in a line of direction, which croffes with
that in which the Aleutian ifles lie. The largeft
and moft remarkable of thefe iflands are Umnak, Aghunalafhka, or, as it is commonly fhortHa
ened, Unalafhka, Kadyak, and Alagfhak,
Of thefe and the Aleutian Ifles, the diftance and pofition are tolerably well afcertained
by fhips reckonings, and latitudes taken by
pilots.   But the fituation of the Andreanofffky
M«P FROM    I74I   TO    I778.
Ifles* is ftill doubtful, though probably their direction is eaft and weft • and fome of them may
* *f
unite with that part of the Fox Iflands which is
moft contiguous to the oppofite continent.
No veffels have yet reached the main land of
America, though poffibly the time is not far
diftant when fome of the Ruffian adventurers
will fall in with fifeat coaft. More to the north
perhaps, at leaft as high as 700. latitude, the
continent of America may approach the coaft of
the Tfchutfki, and form a large promontory,
accompanied with iflands, which have no connection with any of the preceding ones. That
fuch a promontory really exifts, and advances
near to Tfchukotfkoi Nofs, can hardly be doubted; at leaft it feems to be confirmed by all the
lateft accounts which have been procured frome
thofe parts. That prolongation, therefore, of
America, which by Delifle is made to extend
weftward, and is laid down oppofite to Kamtchatka, between 50 and 6o°. latitude, muft be
entirely removed; for many of the fhips whofe
voyages are related in this collection, paffed
through that part of the ocean where this imagl
nary continent was placed.
* These are the same islands which are called, by Mr,
Straehlin, Anadirsky Islands, from their supposed vicinity to
the river Anadyr, and are probably part of the Fox Islands. RUSSIAN DISCOVERIES
It is even more than probable, that the AleiU
tian, and fome of the Fox Iflands, are the
fame which Beering fell in with upon his return ; though, from the unfteadinefs of his courfe,
thefe true pofition could not be exactly laid
down in the chart of that expedition* .
As the fea of Kamtchatka is now fo much frequented, thefe conjectures cannot remain long
undecided ; and it is only to be wifhed, that fome
expeditions were made nortfe-eaft, to difcover
the neareft coafts of America. For there is no
reafon to expect fuccefs by taking any other
direction; as all the veffels, which have fteered
a more foutherly courfe, have failed through
an open fea, without perceiving figns of land.
A full and judicious account of all the dif.
coveries hitherto made in the Eaftern ocean
may be expected from Mullerf.    Meanwhile,
* This error is however so small, and particularly with
respect to the more eafctern coasts and islands, such as Cape
Hermogenes, Toomanoi, ShumaginsIsland, and mountain
f St. Dolmat, that their situation corresponds with that of
the Fox Islands in the general map of Russia, prefixed to
this work.
f Muller has already arranged several of the journals,
and sent them to the board of admiralty at St. Petersburg,
where they are at present kept, together with the charts
of the respective -Voyages.
the FROM  1741 TO I778.
the following narrative,, extracted from original
papers, and procured from the beft intelligence,
may be acceptable to the public; and induce
the Ruffians to publifh more circumftantial relations. Befides, the reader will here find a
[more authentic and accurate account than has
been publilhed in the calendar of St. Peterfburg*; and feveral miftakes in that memoir
are corrected.
* A German copy of the treatise alluded to in the texif
Rtfas sent, by its author, Mr. Stashlin, Counsellor of State
fo: the Empress of Russia, to the late Dr. Maty; and it is
mentioned in- the Philosophical Transactions for 1774,
under the following title: " A new Map and Preliminary
Description of the New Archipelago in the North, discover^ a few years ago by the Russians in the N. E. beyond Kamtchatka. A translation of this treatise was
published tneLsame'year by Heydinger.
CHAP. 2<
Voyages in 1745—Firft difcovery  of the AkiU
tian Ifles by Michael Nevodfiikof.
A Voyage made in the year 1745 by Emilian
■*• ■*• Baffof fcarcelv deferves notice, as he
only reached Beering's Ifland, and two fmaller
ones to the fouth, and returned on the 31ft of
July, 1746. :.•;■,-•,--   ,..- >   ]
The firft remarkable voyage was undertaken
in the  year 1745.    The veflel was  a   Shitifcf
named Eudokia, fitted out at the expence  of
Aphanaffei   Tfebaeffkoi,   Jacob Tfiuprof, and
others; fhe  failed from the Kamtchatka river
Sept, 19, under the command of Michael Ne-.
vodtfikof, a native of Tobolfk.    Having difcovered three unknown iflands, they wintered
upon   one   of   them,   in   order   to  kill   fea-
otters, which were numerous.    Thefe were undoubtedly the  neareft* Aleutian iflands:   the
language of the inhabitants was not underftood
by a Kamtchatkan interpreter.    For the purpofe therefore of learning this language, they
W^% •■%.'   /■•     *\ -
* The small group lying S. E. of Beering's Island, are
the real Aleutian isles: they are sometimes called the
Nearest Aleutian Isles; and the Fox Islands, the Furthest
Aleutian Isles.
arried FROM   1741   TO   I778.
carried back with them one of the iflanders,
and prefented him to the chancery of Bolche-
jretfk, with a falfe account of their proceedings,
j This iflander was examined as foon as he had
[acquired a flight knowledge of the Ruffian language, and, as it is faid, gave the following
report. He was called Temnac, and the name
[of the ifland of which he was a native, was Att.
JAt fome diftance from thence is a great ifland
I called Sabaya, of which the inhabitants are de-
Inominated Kogii, who, as the Ruffians under-
jftood or thought they underftood him, made
rroffes, had books and fire arms, and navigated
[in baidars or leathern canoes. At no great
diftance from the ifland where the Ruffians wintered, were two well inhabited iflands: the firft.
[lying E. S. E. and S. E. by S., the fecond
|E. and E. by S. Temnac was baptized under
|he name of Paul, and fent to Okotfk,
As the mifbehaviour of the fhip's crew towards the natives was fufpected, partly from
|he lofs of feveral men, and partly from the
report of thofe Ruffians, who were not con-
:erned in the diforderly behaviour of their com-
>anions, a ftrict^ enquiry was inftituted; and
te following circumftances tranfpired from
le relations of the commander and fome of
le  crew.
After fix days failing, they came in fight of
I the
i*?i SPS1I
• e e^ee
the firft ifland on the 24th of September, at midday, paffed it, and towards evening difcovered
the fecond ifland ; where they lay at anchor until
On the 25th feveral inhabitants appearing
on the coaft, the pilot rowed towards fhore
in the fmall boat, with an intention to
land; but, obferving their numbers increafe to
about an hundred, he was afraid of venturing,
although thev beckoned to him. He contented
himfelf, therefore, with flinging fome needles
amongft them, and the iflanders, in return
threw into the boat fome fea-fowl of the cormorant kind. The captain endeavoured to
hold a converfation with them by means of
the interpreters, but no one underftood their
language. The crew now attempted to row.
the veffel out to fea; but the wind being contrary, they were driven to the other fide of
the ifland, where they eaft anchor.
The next day Tfiuprof, having landed with
fome of the crewT to look for water, met feveral
inhabitants: he gave them fome tobacco and
fmall Chinefe pipes, and received in return i
prefent of a flick, upon which the head of a
feal was carved. They endeavoured to wreft
his mufket from him, but without effect; and as
he was retiring towards the boat, they feized tjie
rope which faftened it to the fhore. This attack
compelled Tfiuprof to fire, and having wounded
one FROM   1741   TO   1778.
lone perfon in the hand, they quitted their hold,
and he rowed back to the fhip. The favages
inftantly  threw  off  their   clothes,   carried  the
J *
I wounded perfon into the fea, and waflied him.
In confequence of this encounter, the fhip's
crew would not venture to winter at this place;
jbut rowed back to the other ifland, where they
came to anchor-
The next morning Tfiuprof and Shaffyrin
llanding with a larger party, obferved traces of
iinhabitants; but meeting none, returned to the
|mip, and coafted fhe ifland. The following
Iday the Coffac Shekurdin went on fhore, accompanied by five failors, two of whom he fent
back with a fupply of water, and remained with
the others to hunt fea-otters. At night the
party came to fome dwellings inhabited by five
families; but, upon their approach the natives
abandoned their huts, and hid themfelves among
the rocks. Shekurkin having returned to the
fhip, was again fent on fhore with a larger company, to difcover a proper place for laying
up the veffel during winter. In their way they
obferved fifteen iflanders upon a height, and
threw* them fome fragments of dried fifh, in order
to induce them to approach nearer; but as
this overture did not fucceed, Tfiuprof ordered
fome of the crew to feize one of them for the
purpofe of learning their language.    This order
I 2 was
i;- "^if f.'"- Zw el HP*'
j1: A^A'   "I
Hit   ffe%E%S«'
":■•■»■ *   «-^^*e'
was executed, notwithftanding the refiftance
of the iflanders with their bone-fpears; and the
Ruffians immediately returned with their pri-
foner to the fhip. They were foon afterwards
driven to fea by a violent ftorm, and beat about
from the fecond to the ninth of October, during
which time they loft their anchor and boat: at
length they came back to the fame ifland,
where they paffed the winter.
Soon after landing, they found in an adjacent
hut the bodies of two inhabitants, who were
probably killed in the laft encounter. In their
way the Ruffians were met by an old woman who
had been taken prifoner, and fet at liberty. She
was accompanied with thirty-four iflanders of
both fexes, dancing to the found of a drum, and
brought a prefent of coloured earth. Pieces of
cloth, thimbles, and needles, were diftributed
among them in return, and they parted amicably.
Before the end of October, the fame perfons, together with the old woman and feveral children, returned dancing as before; brought birds, fifh,.
and other provifion, and paffed the night with
the Ruffians. Soon after their departure,
Tfiuprof, Shaffyrin, and Nevodtfikof, accompanied with feven of the crew, followed them, and
found them among the rocks. In this interview the natives behaved in the moft friendly
manner; and  exchanged  a baidar and   fome
fkins FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
fkins for two fhirts. They were obferved to
[have hatchets of fharpened ftone, and needles
[of bone; they lived upon the flefh of fea-otters,
ifeals, and fea-lions, which they killed with clubs
land bone-lances.
On the 24th of October, a party of ten
[perfons, fent by Tfiuprof under the command
[of Larion Belayef, treating the inhabitants in
a hoftile manner, they defended themfelves
[with their bone-lances. This refiftance gave
[the Ruffians a pretext for firing, and they killed
[fifteen men, in order to feize their women.
Shocked at thefe barbarous proceedings, She-
kurdin retired privately to the fhip, and made
a report to Tfiuprof, who countenanced in-
^ftead of punifhing thefe cruelties, as he was
[incenfed againft the iflanders for refufing to
give him an iron bolt, which he faw in their
poffeffion. He had even committed feveral
[acts of hoftility againft them,and had formed
I the horrid defign of poifoning them with a mix-
jtureof corrofive fublimate. To preferve appearances however, he difpatched Shekurdin
and Nevodtfikof to reproach Belayef for his
diforderly conduct; but fent him at the fame
time a fupply of ammunition.
The Ruffians continued upon this ifland,
where they caught many fea-otters, until the-
14th  of  September,   1746; but dreading the
I 3 refenjt-
„- "_*]
Ipsa ifeS::
■ye ■
ii'  -    ?•!
refentment of the natives, they put to fea with
an intention of feeking for fome uninhabited
iflands. They were however overtaken by a
violent ftorm, and were driven about until the
30th of October, when their veffel ftruck upon
a rocky fhore, and was wrecked, with the lofs
of almoft all the tackle, and the greater part of
the furs. Worngout with cold and fatigue,
$hey ventured, the firft of November, to penetrate into the interior of the country, which
they found rocky and uneven, and were informed by fome of the natives that the iflancj
was called Karaga, and that the inhabitants
were tributary to Ruffia, and of the Koriac
tribe. The iflanders behaved to them with
great kindnefs, until Belayef attempted to feduce
the wife of the chief. The woman gave intelligence to her hufband, and the natives threatened
the whole crew w#h immediate death; but
means were found to pacify them.
The 30th of May, 1747, a party of OIo-
torians made a defcent upon the ifland in three
baidars, and attacked the natives; but, after
fome lofs on both fides, they went away. They
foon after re-appeared with a larger force, and
were again compelled to retire; but as they
threatened to return in a fhort time, and deftroy all the inhabjjtapts who paid tribute, the
iflanders advifed  the Ruffians   to depart, and
B!^'?fi« »..*5W
FROM   I74I   TO   1778.
affifttfd them in building two baidars. They
put to fea the 27th of June, and landed on the
21ft of July at Kamtchatka, with the remainder
of their cargo, confifting of three hundred and
twenty fea-otters, of which they paid the tenth
into the cuftoms. Twelve men were loft
during this expedition.
CHAP. 3.
Succeffive Voyages, from 1747 to 1753, to Beering's and Copper Ifland, and to the Aleutian
Ifles—Voyage of Emilian Yugof—Of the Boris
and Glebb—Of Andrew Tolftyk to the Aleutian
Ifles, 1749—Voyage of Vorobief, 1750—Of
Novikof and Baccof from Anadyrfk—Shipwreck upon Beering*s Ifland—Voyage of Dur-
nef, in the St. Nicholas, 1754—Narrative of
the Voyage—Defcription of the Aleutian Ifles
'—Some Account of the Inhabitants.
IN 1747 * two veffels failed from the Kamtchatka   river, according to   a   permiflion
granted by  the  chancery  of Bolcheretfk   for
* It najty be necessary to inform the reader, that, in this
and the two following chapters, some circumstances are
occasionally omitted, which are found in the original.
These omissions relate chiefly to the names of some of the
partners engaged in the equipments, and to a detail of immaterial occurrences prior to the departure of the vessels.
a! 120
hunting fea-otters. One was fitted out by Andrew
Wfevidof, and carried forty-fix men, befides
eight Coffacs : the other belonged to Feodor
Kolodilof, Andrew Tolftyk, and company; her
crew, confifted of forty-one Ruffians and Kamt-
chadals, with fix Coffacs.
The latter veffel failed the 20th of October,
and was forced by ftrefs of weather and other accidents, to winter at Beering's Ifland. From
thence they departed May the 31ft, 1748, and
touched at another fmall ifland to take in water
and other neceffaries. They then fteered S. E.
for a confiderable way without discovering any
newT iflands; and, being in great want of provifions, returned to the Kamtchatka river, Auguft
14, with a cargo of two hundred and fifty old
fea-otter fkins, about one hundred young ones,
and one hundred and forty-eight petf or arctic
fox fkins, which were all killed on Beering's
We have no account of Wfevidof's voyage,
except that he reached an uninhabited ifland,
probably one of the neareft Aleutian Ifles, and
returned the 25th of July, 1749, with the fkins
of one thoufand and forty fea-otters, and two
thoufand arctic foxes.
Emilian Yugof, merchant of Yakutfk, obtained
from the fenate of St. Peterfburg permiflion to
fit out four veffels for himfelf and his affociates,
m§. and FROM   1741   TO   I778.
and procured the exciufive privilege of hunting
fea-otters upon Beering's and Copper Iflands
during thefe expeditions, for which monopoly he
agreed to deliver to the cuftoms the third part
of the furs.
October 6, 1750, he put to fea from Bolcherefk, in the floop John, manned with twenty-five
Ruffians and Kamtchadals, and two Coffacs; he
was foon overtaken by a ftorm, and the veffel
driven on fhore between the mouths of the
rivers Kronotfk and Tfchafminfk.
October, 1751, he again failed, and returned
on the 22dof July, 1754, to New Kamtchatkoi
Oftrog, with,the fkins  of feven  hundred and
fifty-five   old   fea-otters,   thirty-five  cub  fea-
otters, four hundred   and  feventeen   cubs   of
fea-bears, and feven thoufand and forty-four arctic fox fkins ;   of the latter, two thoufand were
white, and   one thoufand  feven  hundred  and
fixty-five  black.    Thefe  furs   were  procured
upon   Beering's   Jfland   and   Copper   Ifland,
where Yugof died.    Having difobeyed an injunction to take on board fome officers of the
Ruffian navy, to accompany him in the expedition, the fhip and cargo were feized by order
of the chancery of Irkutfk, but as it appeared
that certain  perfons had depofited money in
Yugof's hand, for equipping a fecond veffel, the
crown delivered up the cargo, after referving the
third part, according to the original ftipulation.
This kind  of charter-company being foon
X J o
diffolved through mifconduct and want of capi-
s O x
tal, other merchants were allowed the privilege.
of fitting out veffels, even before the  return of
Yugof's fhip;   and were  more   fortunate   in
making difcoveries.
Nikiphor Trapefnikof, a merchant of Irkutfk,
fent out a fhip, called the Boris and Glebb, upon
condition of paying, befide the ufual tribute, the
tenth of all the furs; the Coffac Sila Sheffyrin
went on board for the purpofe .of collecting it.
They failed in Auguft, 1749, from the Kamtchatka river ; and returned the 16th of Auguft,
1753, with a large cargo of furs. They vifited
an unknown ifland, probably one of the Aleutians, where feveral of the inhabitants were per-
fuaded to pay a tribute of fea-otter fkins, the
names of thefe iflanders, were Igya, Oeknu,
Ogogoektack, Shabukiauck, Alak, Tutun, Ono-
nufhan, Rotogei, Tfchinitu, Vatfch, Afhagat,
Avyjanifhaga, Unafhayupu, Lak, Yanfhugalik,
Umgalikan, Shati, Kyipago, and Olofhkot *;
another Aleutian contributed three fea-otters^
The cargo confifted of three hundred and twenty
prime fea-otter fkins, four hundred and ,eighty
* The author here remarks in a note, that the proper
names of the islanders mentioned in this place, and other
parts, bear a surprising resemblance, both in their sound
and termination, to those of the Greenlanders.
of FROM   1741   TO  I778.
of the fecond, and four hundred of the third
fort, five hundred female and middle aged, and
two hundred and twenty medwedki or young'
Andrew Tolftyk, a merchant of Selenginfk,
having obtained permiflion from the chancery
of Bolcheretfk, refitted a fhip which had made
a former voyage [ he failed from Kamtchatka
Auguft the 19th, 1749, and returned July the
According to the commander's account, they
lay at anchor from the 6th of September, 1749,
to the 20th of May, 1750, off Beering's Ifland,
where they caught only forty-feven fea-otters;
proceeded from thence to the Aleutian Iflands*,
firft difcovered by Nevodtfikof, and killed one
thoufand fix hundred and fixty-two old and
middle-aged fea-otters, and one hundred and
nineteen cubs; their cargo confifted befides of
the fkins of feven hundred and twenty blue foxes,
and of eight hundred and forty young fea-bears.
The inhabitants of thefe iflands did not appear
to have ever before paid tribute; and feemed
to be a-kin to the Tfchutfki tribe, their women
being ornamented w7ith different figures traced
in the fkin by means of needles, in the manner of
that people, and of the Tungufians of Siberia,
* See chap, 2.
They B12&*
rHt«.-:i;"« e-
: -? * ic-.  . ai-> j.
i   £,*  'V --- :• - :
'"v : e    ■■'■'■
—L.-V . - .- V   _•"  -   •;   ,?■
They differed however from them, by having
two fmall holes cut through the bottom of the
under-lip, through each of which they pafs a bit
of the fea-horfe tufh, worked into the form of a
tooth, with a fmall button at one end, to keep it
within the mouth. Thefe people killed, without
provocation, two Kamtchadals belonging to the
fhip. Upon the third ifland fome inhabitants
had paid tribute : their names were reported to
be Anitin, Altakukor, and Alefhkut, with his
fon Atfchelap. The weapons of the whole ifland
confifted of only twelve fpears and one dart of
bone, all pointed with flint, and the Ruffians 00-
ferved two figures carved in wood, refembling
Auguft 3, 1750, the veffel Simeon and John,
fitted out by Wfevidof, agent for the Ruffian
merchant R. Rybenfkoi, and manned with fourteen Ruffians (partly merchants, and partly
hunters), and thirty Kamtchadals, failed under
the command of the Coffac Vorobief. They
were driven by a violent current and tempeflu-
ous weather to a fmall defert ifland, the pofition
of which s not determined, but it was probably
one of thofe near Beering's Ifland. The fhip
being fo fhattered by the ftorm, that it was noV
longer in a condition to keep the fea, Vorobief
built a fmall veffel with drift-wood which he'
called Jeremiah, and arrived at Kamtchatka in
autumn, 1752.
Upon FROM 1741 TO I778.
Upon the fmall ifland were caught feven
hundred old and one hundred and twenty cub
[ fea-otters, one thoufand nine hundred blue foxes,
five thoufand feven hundred black fea-bears, and
one thoufand three hundred and ten Kotiki, or
cub fea-bears.
A voyage made about this time from Anadyrfk- deferves particular mention.
Aug. 24, 1749, Simeon Novikof of Yakutfk
iand Ivan Baccof of Uftvug, agents for Ivan
Shilkin, having  determined to  proceed from
[Anadyrfk to Kamtchatka by fea, built a veffel
one   hundred  verfts above   Anadyrfk,  which
employed two years in conftructing.
In 1748, they failed down the river Anadyr,
jand through the bays of Kopeikina and One-
menfkaya, where they paffed many fand-banks,
entered the exterior gulph, which they reached
in nine days, and waited for a favourable wind.
here they faw feveral Tfchutfki, who appeared
upon the heights fingly and not in bodies, as if
to reconnoitre, which made them cautious. In
paffing the large opening of the exterior bay,
they fteered between the beach, on the left, and
a contiguous rock; where, at the diftance of a
hundred and twenty yards the depth of water is
from three to four fathoms; failed E. S. E.
about fifty verfts, in four fathoms water; doubled
a fandy
_ 126
a  fandy point,   which ftretches   towards   the
Tfchutfki coaft, and reached the-open fea.
From the 10th of July to the 30th, they were
driven by tempeftuous winds, not far from the
mouth of the Anadyr, and ran up the fmall
river Katirka, upon whofe banks dwell the
Koriacs, a people tributary to Ruffia. The
mouth of the Katirka is from fixty to eighffl|
yards broad, from three to four fathoms deep,
and abounds in fifti. They again put to fea;
and at length reached Beering's Ifland, where
they lay at anchor from the 15th of September
to the 30th of October, when a violent ftorm;
dafhed the veffel to pieces upon the rocks. The
crew efcaping, fearchedfor the remains of Beering's wreck, to employ the materials in con-
ftructing a boat, but found nothing but rotten
planks, a few cables, and iron-work corroded
with ruft. Having felected the beft cables, and
what iron-work was immediately neceflary, and
gathered drift-wood during the winter, they
built a fmall boat, whofe keel was only feventeen
Ruffian ells and an half long, and named it Ca-
piton. In this they put to fea, and failed in
fearch of an unknown ifland, which they thought
they faw lying North-eaft : but being miftaken,
tacked, and ftood for Copper Ifland, from
whence they failed to Kamtchatka.
' JM?^
L      !
Bmm FROM   174t  TO  I778.
The veffel being granted in property to Ivan
Shilkin, as fome compenfation for his loffes,
with the privilege of employing it in a future
expedition to the new-difcoVered iflands, he
failed the 7th of October, 1757, with a crew of
twenty Ruffians, and the fame number of Kamtchadals ; accompanied by Studentzof, a Coffac,
who was fent to collect the tribute for the
crown. An account of this expedition will be
given hereafter*.
Auguft, 1754, Nikiphor Trapefnikof fitted
put the St. Nicholas, and failed from Kamtchatka
under the command of the Caffac Kodion Dur-
nef. After touching at two of the Aleutian Ifles,
and vifiting a third, which had not before been
difcovered, he returned to Kamtchatka in 1757.
His cargo confifted of the fkins of one thoufand
two hundred and twenty fea-otters, of four hundred and ten female, and fix hundred and fixty-
five cubs; befide which, the crew had obtained
in barter from the iflanders the fkins of fix hundred and fifty-two fea-otters, of thirty female,
and fifty cubs.-
According to an account delivered in the
the third of May, 1758, by Durnef and Sheffy-
rin, who was fent as collector of the tribute, they
reached in ten days Ataku, one of the Aleutian
See chap. 5.
Iflands, where they remained until 1757, and
lived upon amicable terms with the natives.
The fecond ifland, which is neareft to Ataku,
and which contains the greateft number of inhabitants, is called Agataku; and the third Shemya;
they lie from forty to fifty verfts afunder. Upon
all the three iflands there are (exciufive of
children) but fixty males, whom they rendered
tributary. The inhabitants live on wild roots
and fea-animals; but do not employ themfelves
in catching fifh, although the rivers abound with
all kinds of falmon, and the fea with turbot;
their cloaths are made of the fkins of birds and
of fea-otters. The Toigon, or chief, of the firft
ifland informed them, by means of a boy who
underftood the Ruffian tongue, of three large
and well-peopled iflands, lying eaftward, Ibiya,;
Kickfa, and Olas, whofe inhabitants fpeak a
different language. Sheffyrin and Durnef found
upon the ifland three round copper-plates, containing an infcription, and ornamented with foliage, which the waves had eaft upon the fhore >
and brought them, together with other trifling curiofities, procured from the natives, to New
Kamtchatkoi Oftrog.
Another fhip built with larchwood by Trape-
fnikof, which failed in 1752 .under the conduct of
Alexei Drufinin, a merchant of Kurfk, was eaft
away at Beering's Ifland.   The crew having conftructed FROM I74I TO I778.
flrufted a veffel out of the wreck, which they
named Abraham, bore away for the more diftant
I iflands; but being forced by contrary winds, and
meeting with the St. Nicholas upon the point of
failing for the Aleutian Ifles, embarked on board
that fhip, after leaving the new-conftructed veffel under the care of four failors. The crew
took upon Beering's Ifland five fea-otters, one
thoufand two hundred and twenty-two arctic
foxes, and two thoufand five hundred fea-bears;
their fhare of the furs, during the expedition in
the St. Nicholas, amounted to five hundred
fea-otter fkins, procured by barter.
K » 1
:, , CHAP. 4.
Voyages from 1753 to 1756.
Kolodilofs Ship fails from Kamtchatka^ 1753—
Departure of Serebranikojf's Veffel—Shipwrecked upon one of the diftant Iflands-*—Ac-
trnni of the inhabitants—The crew conftruB
another Veffel and return to Kamtchatka—Departure of Kraffilnikoff' s Veffel—Shipwrecked
upon Copper IJlandL—The Crew reach Beering's Ifland in two baidars.
!HREE veffels  were fitted out tin 1753-M
one by Kolodilof, a fecond by Serebrani- j
kof, agent for the merchant Rybenfkoy, and a I
third by Ivan Kraffilnikof, a merchant of Kamtchatka.
Kolodilof's fhip failed from Kamtchatka the!
19th of Auguft, with a crew of thirty-four per- j
fons, and anchored the 28th off Beering's Ifland,:
where they propofed to winter, in order to layi
in a flock of provifions; but in attempting to
land, the boat overfet, and nine of the crew]
were drowned.
June 30, 1754, they ftood out to fea:  the
weather however proving ftormy and foggy, and
the FROM I74I  TO I778.
the fhip fpringigg a-leak, they were in danger
[of perifhing; but unexpectedly reached one of
(the Aleutian Inlands, where they lay from the
15th of September until the 9th of July, 1755.
fin the autumn of 1754 they were joined by a
Kamtchadal, and a Koriac, who, with four
[others, had deferted from Trapefnikof's crew ;
I and remained upon the ifland in order to catch
fea-otters for their own advantage. Four of thefe
[deferters were killed by the iflanders for feducing
(their wives; but thefe two not being guilty of
■the fame diforderly conduct, the inhabitants
■lived with them upon the beft terms. The
Icrew killed upon this ifland above one thoufand
■fix hundred fea-otters, and returned to Kamt-
jchatka in autumn 1755.
Serebranikof's veffel failed in July 1753,
■nanned alfo with thirty-four Ruffians and Kamt-
Idiadals: they difcovered feveral new iflands,.
■which were probably fome of the more diftant
limes; but were lefs fortunate in hunting fea-
|>tters than KolodiloPs crew. They fteered
IS. E. and on the 17th of Auguft anchored under
Im unknown ifland, whofe inhabitants fpoke a
II language they did not underftand. Here they
■propofed looking out for a fafe harbour; but
■were prevented by; a fudden ftorm, which drove
Ithera from theil^^hor. The fhip being toft
■about for feveral days towards the eaft, they
K 2,
1 !%J
T: -■---■>..■'
difcovered not far from the firft ifland, four
others; ftill more to the eaft three other iflands
appeared in fight; but they were unable to land.
The veffel continued driving until the 2d of
September, and was confiderably fhattered,
when they fortunately came near an ifland and
eaft anchor; they were however forced from i
this ftation, the veffel wrecked upon the coaft,
and the crew with difficulty reached the fhore.
This ifland feemed to be oppofite to Katyfkoi
Nofs in the peninfula of Kamtchatka, and near ]
it they faw three others. Towards the end of I
September, Dmitri Trophin, accompanied with 1
nine men, went in the boat on an hunting j
and reconnoitring party ; they were attacked
by a large body of inhabitants, who threw darts
from a fmall wooden engine, and wounded one
of the company. The firft fire however drove
them back ; and although they returned feveral
times to the attack in numerous bodies, yet they
were eafily repulfed.
Thefe favages mark and colour their faces
like other iflanders, and alfo thruft pieces of
bone through holes in their under-lips.
Soon afterwards the Ruffians were joined in a
friendly manner by ten iflanders, who brought
the flefh of fea-animals and fea-otters : a prefent
the more welcome, as they had lived for fome time
upon fmall fhell-fifh and roots, and had fufferedi
greatly FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
greatly from hunger. Several toys were dif-
tributed in return. The Ruffians remained
until June, 1754, upon this ifland; when they
departed in a fmall veffel, conftructed with the
remains of the wreck, and called the St. Peter
and Paul, in which they landed at Katyrfkoi
Nofs, where having collected one hundred and
forty fea-horfe teeth, they reached the mouth of
the Kamtchatka river.
During this voyage twelve Kamtchadals deferted ; of whom fix were flain, together with a
female inhabitant, upon one of the moft diftant
iflands. The remainder, upon their return to
Kamtchatka, were examined ; and gave the following account. The ifland, where the fhip was
wrecked, is about feventy verfts long, .and
twenty broad ; around it lie twelve other iflands
of different fizes, from five to ten verfts diftant
from each other, and eight of them appear to
be no more than five verfts long: all thefe
iflands contain about one thoufand fouls. The
dwellings of the inhabitants are provided with
no other furniture than benches, and mats
of platted grafs. Their drefs confifts of a
fhirt of bird-fkins, and an upper garment
made of inteftines flitched together; they
wear wooden caps,- ornamented with a fmall
piece of board projecting forwards, apparently,
K 3 as
m*M 1
as it feemed, for a defence againft arrows.
They are all provided with ftone-knives, and
a few of them poffefs iron ones: their only
weapons are arrows with points of bone or
flint, which they fhoot from a wooden inftru-
ment. There are no trees upon the ifland:
it produces however the cow-parfnip*, which
grows at Kamtchatka. The climate is by no
means fevere, for the fnow does not lie upon
the ground above a month in the year.
KraflilnikoPs veffel failed in 1754, and anchored on the 18th of October off Beering's
Ifland; where all the fhips which make to the
new-difcovered, iflands are accuftomed to winter, in order to procure a flock of provifions
from the fea-cows and other amphibious animals. Here they refitted the veffel which had
been damaged by driving upon her anchor; and
having laid in a fufficient flore of all neceffaries,
weighed the ift of Auguft, 1754. The 10th
they were in fight of an ifland, but the coaft was
lined with fo many inhabitants, that they dnim
not venture a-fhore, and ftood out to fea7*
Being overtaken by a ftorm, they were reduceS
to great diftrefs for want of water; at length
they were driven upon Copper Ifland, where
they landed; and,  having taken in wood and
f Heracleum.
water, FROM   I74I   TO   1778.
water, they again fet fail. They were beat back
however by contrary winds, and dropped both
their anchors near the fhore; but the ftorm in-
creafing at night, both cables were broken, and
the fhip dafhed to pieces. All the crew were
fortunately faved; and means were found to get
a^ffiore the fhip's tackle, ammunition, guns, and
the remains of the wreck; but the provifions
were moftly fpoiled. Here they were expofed
to a variety of misfortunes; three were drowned
on the 15th of October, as they were going to
hunt, and the others almoft perifhedwith hunger,
having no nourifhment but fmall fhell-fifh and
roots. On the 29th of December great part of
the fhip's tackle, and all the wood collected from
:the wreck, was wafhed away during an high fea.
Notwithftanding their diftreffes, they continued
their hunting parties, and caught one hundred
and three fea-otters, together with one thoufand
three hundred and ninety blue foxes.
In fpring they put to fea in two baidars, carrying with them all the ammunition, fire-arms,
and remaining tackle, and reached Beering's
Ifland, where they found the fmall veffel Abraham, with the four failors left a-fhore by the crew
of Trapefnikof's fhip*. But as that veffel was
not large enough to contain the whole number,
* See the preceding chapter.
I K 4
/    .
together Sbw
; ft
1 ,3111
together with their cargo of furs, they ftaid until
Serebranikof's and Tolftyk's veffels arrived,
which took in eleven of the crew, with their part
of the furs. Twelve remained at Beering's
Ifland, where they killed great numbers of arctic
foxes, and 'all returned to Kamtchatka in the
Abraham, excepting two, who joined Shilkin's
•'    CHAP. 5.       ,'...' 'A
Voyages from 1756 to 1758—Voyage of Andrean
Tolftyk in 1756 to the Aleutian Ifles—Voya'gS
of Ivan Shilkin in the Caption, 1757—Shipwrecked upon one of the Fox Iflands—The
Crew conftruM a fmall Veffel, and are again
SEPTEMBER 17, 1756, the veffel Andrean
and Natalia, fitted out by Andrean Tolftyk*
merchant of Selenginfk, and manned with thirty
eight Ruffians and Kamtchadals, failed from the
mouth of the Kamtchatka river to Beering's
Ifland, where they continued until the 14th of
June. As no fea-otters came on fhore that
winter, they killed nothing but feals, fea-lions,;
and fea-cows, whofe flefh ferved them for provifion, and their fkins for covering baidars.
June 13, 1757, they weighed anchor, and in
eleven days reached Ataku, one of the Aleutian
Si   ifles FROM  1741 TO I778.
ifles difcovered by Nevodtftkof. Here they
found the inhabitants, as well of that as of the
other two iflands affembled, having juft taken
leave of Trapefnikof's crew, who had failed for
Kamtchatka. The Ruffians feized this opportunity of perfuading them to pay tribute, which
they effected by means of the Toigon, whofe
name was Tunulgafen. He recollected one of
the crew, a Koriac, who was formerly left upon
thefe iflands, and acquainted with the language.
A copper kettle, a fur and cloth coat, a pair of
breeches, flockings, and boots, were bellowed
upon this chief, and on his departure for his
own ifland, he left three women and a boy, to
acquire the Ruffian language.
The Ruffians wintered upon this ifland, and
divided themfelves, as ufual, into different hunting parties : they were compelled by flormy
weather to remain there until the 17th of June,
1758, and before their departure, Tunulgafen
returned with his family, and paid a year's
This veffel brought to Kamtchatka the moft
circumftantial account of the Aleutian ifles yet
The two largeft contained at that time about
fifty males, with whom the Ruffians lived in
great harmony. They heard of a fourth ifland
at fome diftance, called by the natives Iviya,
which they did not vifit on account of tempeftu-
ous weather.
The firft ifland is about one hundred verfts
long, and from five to twenty broad. They
eftimated the diftance from the firft to the fecond,
which lies Eaft-by-South, to be about thirty
verfts, and about forty from the fecond to the
third, which flands South-Eaft. The original
drefs of the iflanders was made with the fkins of
birds, fea-otters, and feals, which were tanned;
but the greater part had procured from the Ruffians dog-fkin coats, and under garments of
fheep-fkin, of which they were very fond. They
are reprefented as naturally talkative, quick of
apprehenfion, and much attached to the Ruffians. Their dwellings are hollowed in the
ground, and covered with wooden roofs re-
fembling the huts of Kamtchatka. Their principal food is the flefh of fea-animals, which they \
harpoon with bone lances ; they alfo feed upon
feveral fpecies of roots and berries, namely*,
cloud-berries, crake-berries, bilberries, and fervices. The rivulets abound with falmon, and 1
other fifh of the trout kind, fimilar to thofe of
Kamtchatka, and the fea with turbot which are j
caught with bone hooks.
Thefe iflands produce fmall offers and un-
Rubus Chamaemorus—Empetrum—Myrtillus—Sorbus. 1
derwood, FROM  I74I TO 1778.
derwood, but no large trees; the fea however
drives afhore fir and larch, fufficient for the con-
ftruction of the huts. Arctic foxes and fea-
otters frequent the firft ifland in great numbers;
and the fhores, during flormy weather, are
covered with wild geefe and ducks.
The Ruffians, according to the'order of the
chancery of Bolcheretfk, endeavoured to perfuade the Toigon. of thefe iflands to accompany
them to Kamtchatka, but without fuccefs.
Upon their departure they diftributed among
the iflanders fome linen, and thirteen nets for
the purpofe of catching fea-otters, which were
thankfully received. This veffel brought to
Kamtchatka the fkins of five thoufand and
thirty old and young fea-otters, of ten hundred
and forty old and young arctic foxes, and of
three hundred and thirty Medwedki or cubs of
The fmall veffel Capiton, which was built
upon Beering's Ifland, and which was given
to the merchant * Ivan Shilkin, as fome com-
penfation for his loffes, put to fea September 26, 1757, carrying on board the Coffac
Ignatius Studentfof, who has given an account
of the voyage.
Soon after their departure they were driven
back to the fhore of Kamtchatka by ftrefs of
* See chap. S.
i;-? \',e,.
Ii". A-.^efM;
VfJ.   '!■    ..<----'" A tV-'-Jt,:*,!-'
weather, and the veffel ftranded, by which accident they loft the rudder and one of the crew.
This misfortune prevented them from putting to
fea again until the following year, when they
failed with thirty-nine of the original crew,
feveral being left behind on account of ficknefs.
At Beering's "Ifland they took up two of Kra-
filnikoFs crew*, who had been fhipwrecked.
They again fet fail in Auguft, and touched at the
neareft Aleutian Ifles, after fuffering greafely from
florms, they continued their courfe to the remoter
iflands lying between Eaft and South-Eaft, and
having paffed by the firft, anchored off the fecond. A boat being fent towards the fhore,
the crew were fuddenly attacked by a numerous
body of iflanders, and had fcarcely time to favel
themfelves by returning to the veffel. They<
had no fooner got aboard, than a violent gale, of
wind broke the cable, drove them to fea, and
wrecked the veffel upon a fmall ifland at no
great diftance. The crew reached the fhore
with difficulty, and faved nothing but the firearms and ammunition.
They had fcarcely landed before they were
befet by a number of favages, rowing in baidars
from the weftern point of the ifland. Though
feveral of the Ruffians were difabled by cold and
See chap. 4-
wet FROM   I74I   TO   I7784
wet, and only fifteen remained Capable of defending themfelves, they advanced without hefi-
tatipn to the iflanders ; and Nicholas Tfiuprof,
who had a (light knowledge of their language, in
vain endeavoured to footh them % but thefavages
gave a fudden fhout, and faluted them with a
volley of darts. The Ruffians then fired, killed
two of the affailants, and forced the remainder
to retire ; and although a frefh body appeared in
fight, no new attack was made. The favages
foon afterwards left the ifland, and rowed acrofs
the ftrait.
From the 6th of September to the 23d of
April, the crew underwent all the extremities of
famine; their beft fare was fhell-fifh and roots,
and they were even at times reduced to ftill the
cravings of appetite with the leather which the
waves wafhed from the wreck. Seventeen died
of hunger ; and the reft would foon have fhared
the fate of their companions, had they not fortunately difcovered a dead*whale, which the fea
had eaft afhore. They remained upon this
ifland another winter, where they killed two
hundred and thirty fea-otters; and, having built
a fmall veffel out of the remains of the wreck,
put to fea in the beginning of fummer 1760.
Having reached one of the Aleutian iflands,
where Serebranikof *s veffel lay at anchor, they
were again fhipwrecked, and loft all the remain-
"0 Egp
,.e ■ y ?'
■ing tackle and furs. Only thirteen of the crew
-now remained, who returned on board the above-
mentioned veffel to Kamtchatka, July 1761.
CHAP. 6.
Voyages in 1758, 1759* and 1760—to' the Fox
Iflands—in the St. Vlodimir, fitted out by
Trapefnikof, and commanded by Paikof 1758.
—and in the Gabriel, by BetfJievin—Account
of the inhabitants of Alakfu or Alachfkak—
Voyage of the Peter and Paul to the Aleutian
Iflands, 1759.
EPTEMBER 1758, the merchant Simeon
Krafilnikof and Nikiphor Trapefnikof fitted
out two veffels for the purpofe of catching fea-
otters. One of thefe, called the St. Vlodimjija
failed the 28th under the command of Dmetri
Paikof, carrying tlte Coffac Siia Shaffyrin as
collector of the tribute, and a crew of forty-five
men. In twenty-four hours they reached
Beering's Ifland, where they wintered.
July 16, 1759, they fteered South in fearch of
land; but, being difappointed, bore away to
the North for the Aleutian Ifles; _and baffled
by contrary winds, failed towards the diftant
iflands, known at prefent under the name of
Si     Lyflie
wmm FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
Lyffie Oftrova, or the Fox Iflands. Sep. i,
they reached the firft, called by the natives
Atchu, and by the Ruffians Goreloi, or the
Burnt Ifland \ but, as the coaft was fteep and
craggy, they made to Amlak, lying at a fmall
diftance, where they determined to pafs the
winter. They divided themfelves into three
parties: the firft, at the head of which was
Alexey Drufinin, went to a fmall ifland called
in the journal Sitkin; the Coffac Shaffyrin led
the fecond, confifting of ten perfons, to Atak;
and Simeon Polevoi remained aboard with the
reft of the crew. All thefe iflands were well
peopled; the men wore bones thruft through
their ears, under the lips, and the griftle of
the nofe; and the faces of the women were
marked with blackifh ftreaks made with a needle
and thread in the fkin, in the fame manner as a
Coffac, one of the crew, had obferved before
Upon fome of the Tfchutfki. The inhabitants
had no iron; the points of their darts and lances
v/ere tipped with bone and flint.
The Ruffians firft imagined that Amlak
was uninhabited; but in one of their hunting
parties they found a boy of eight years old, whom
they brought with them; they gave him the name
of Hermolai, and taught him the R uffian language, that he might ferve as an interpreter*
After penetrating  further, they  difcovered a
.? •.
,.*t J
il-s- IBS
ml *aAi 144
hut, wherein were two women, four men, and
as many boys, whom they treated kindly, and
employed in hunting, fifhing, and digging roots.
This kind behaviour encouraged others to pay
frequent vifits, and exchange fifh and flefh for
goats hair, horfes* manes, and glafs beads. They
procured alfo four other iflanders with their
wives, who dug roots for them ; and thus the
winter paffed without any difturbance.
In fpring the hunting parties returned; during
thefe excurfions only one man was killed upon
the ifland Atak, and his fire-arms taken away
by the natives. June 1760, the fame parties
were fent to the fame iflands. Shaffyrin, who
headed one of the parties, was foon afterward!
killed, together with eleven men, by the inhabitants of Atak, but for what reafon is not known.
Drufinin received the firft information of this
maffacre from fome inhabitants of Sitkin, where
he then was, and immediately fet out with the
remaining hunters to join their companions on
board. Although he fucceeded in regaining the
veffel, their number was fo considerably reduced that their fituation appeared very dangerous: he was foon however relieved from
his apprehenfions by the arrival of the merchant
Betfhevin's veffel  at  the   ifland   of   Atchu*.
Atak and Atchu   are two names for the same island j
Called also by the Russians Goreloi, or Burnt Island.
9    The
Bl wm£-
FROM I74I  TO  I778.
:   ^tee- : 1
The two crews entered into partnerfhip: the
St. Vlodimir received twenty-two men, and
ransferred eleven to the other veffel; the
owner wintered at Amlak, and the latter con-
inued at anchor before Atchu.
This veffel, fitted out at the expence of Bet-
hevin, a merchant of Irkutfk, was called Ga-
oriel, and put to fea from the mouth of the Bol-
haia Reka July 31 ft, 1760. She was manned
yith forty Ruffians and twenty Kamtchadals,
nd had on board Gabriel Pufhkaref of the
krrifon of Ochotfk, Andrew Shdanof, Jacob
Sharypof,  Prokopei Lobafhkof, with Nikiphor
olodof, and Aphanaffei Ofkolof, Betfhevin's
Hiving paffed the fecond ftrait of the Kuril
fles, they reached the Aleutian Ifles on the 24th
f Auguft, and failed among thofe more remote
lands which lie in one continued chain to the
xtentof 15 degrees of longitude.
September 25 they reached Atchu, or Burnt
fland, and found the St., Vlodimir lying twenty
erfts from that ifland, before Amlak, in danger of
king attacked by the iflanders. They immediately
bined crews, in order to enable the enfeebled
ornpany of the St. Vlodimir to continue hunt-
ng; and, as it is ufual in fuch cafes, entered into
t contract for the divifion of the profit. During
[he winter the two crews killed, partly upon
L Siguyam,
:' 'Wmm
•Ml'?' - .^S/^^B
ft: •' $sv9ImI
^"e';'ee--  ■
H --e ■''
'Hi -
; ■ %    1
■  ,v-;-e - ■ 146
Siguyam, about eight hundred fea-otters of different fizes, about one hundred medwedki or
cubs, fome river otters, above four hundred red,
greyifh, and black foxes, and collected twelve
pood of fea-horfe teeth.
In June 1761, the crews were diftributed
equally on board the two veffels: Kraffilnikof's
remained at Amak, with an intention of returning to Kamtchatka, and Betfhevin's put to
fea from Atchu, in queft of other iflands. They
touched firft at Umnak, where they met Nifci|
phorof's veffel, took in wood and water, and repaired their fails; they fteered for the moft remote ifland Alakfu, or Alakfhak, where, having
laid up the fhip in a bay, they built huts, anc|
made preparations for wintering. This ifland
was well inhabited, and the natives behaved at
firft in a very friendly manner, for they trafficked]
with the Ruffians, and even delivered nine of
their children as hoftages; but the lawlefs and
irregular behaviour of the crew foon irritated
and provoked the iflanders to hoftilities.
In January 1762, Golodof and Pufhkaref
went with a party of twenty men along the fhore;
and, in attempting to violate fome girls on
the ifland Unyumga, were furprifed by a numerous body of natives : Golodof and another
Ruffian were killed and three wounded. Not
long afterwards, the watch of the crew was fud-
denly FROM I74I TO I778.
mly attacked by the iflanders; four were flain,
many   wounded,   and   the   huts   reduced
May 3, Lobafchkof and another Ruffian were
lied, as they were going to bathe in the warm
lings,  which lie about five verfts  from1 the
Even;   on which feven of the hoftages were
[it to death.    The fame month the natives at-
lpted to furprife the Ruffians, but being differed, were repulied by means of the fire arms,
•length the  Ruffians, finding  themfelves in
Intinual danger, weighed anchor, and failed for
jnnak, where they took on board two inhabits with their  wives and children in order to
|w them other iflands;   but were prevented
[tempeftuous weather from reaching them, and
re driven weftward, with fuch violence, that
their fails were   carried away.     At length,
[the 23d of September, they ran a-ground in
(diflrict of Stobolfkoi Oftrog.    Six men were
mediately difpatched in the fmall boat and two
liars to land, and were accompanied with fell d girls who had been brought from the new-
ffrovered iflands in order  to   gather berries,
ianwhile the crew endeavoured to ply to wind-
ff d, and the party in the boat were fcarcely able,
Recount of a ftorm, to reach the fhip, and catch
11 of a  rope,  which was flung out to them.
ifo- men remained with the baidars; and were
L 2 ; after-
afterwards carried by fome Kamtchadals to New
Kamtchatkoi Oftrog. The fhip, without one
fail remaining was driven along the coaft of
Kamtchatka towards Avatcha, and about feventy
verfts from that harbour ran into the bay of
Kalatzoff on the 25th of September. The cargo
confifted of the fkins of nine hundred old and
young fea-otters, and of three hundred and fifty
Pufhkaref and his crew during this voyage
treated the iflanders with great inhumanity ; they
were brought to trial in 1764; and the preceding
account is drawn from the concurring evidence
of feveral witneffes.   It appears alfo, that they
brought away from  Atchu   and Amleg   two
Aleutian men and three boys, Ivan an Aleutian J
interpreter, and about twenty women and girls
whom they feduced.    Ivan, and one of the -jboys
whom they called Mofes, were the only perfom
who arrived at Kamtchatka.     On   their   firfti
approach to that coaft, fourteen women were fend
afhore to dig roots and gather berries; of thefe
two ran away, and a third being killed, as they
were returning to the fhip, by . Gorelin, the reft
in a fit of defpair leaped into the fea and were
drowned.    All the remaining Aleutians^ except'
ing Ivan and Mofes, were immediately thrown!
overboard by Pufhkaref's order.   The accounl
whid FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
[which follows, although it is found in the depofi-
[tions, does not deferve to be entirely credited.
The natives are very tall and ftrong. They
[make their clothes of the fkins of birds; and
wear bones in their under lips by way of ornament. They were faid to ftrike their nofes until
they bled, in order to fuck the blood; but we
[are informed from fubfequent accounts, that
the blood was intended for other purpofes*.
I They were accufed even of murdering their
own children, in order to drink their blood;
[but this , is undoubtedly an invention of the
criminals, who reprefented the iflanders in the
moft hideous colours, as an*excufe for their own
cruelties. Their fubterraneous dwellings are
fimilar to thofe of the Kamtchadals; and have
j feveral openings on the fides, through which they
make their efcape when the principal entrance is
befet by an enemy. Their weapons confift of
! arrows and lances pointed with bone, which they
dart to a confiderable diftance.
The ifland Alakfu is faid to contain rein-deer,
bears, wild boars, wolves, otters, and a fpecies of
'' It appears, in the last chapter of this translation, that
the islanders are accustomed to glue on the points of their
darts with blood; and that this was the real motive for the
practice mentioned in the text.
dogs with long ears, which are very fierce an^ j
wild. The greater part of thefe animals not being found upon thofe Fox Iflands which lie
nearer to the weft, this circumftance feems to
prove that Alakfu * is fituated at no great diftance from the continent of America. Red and
black foxes are fo numerous that they are feen in
herds of ten or twenty. Wood is driven upon
the coaft in great abundance. The ifland produces no large trees, but under^wood, and a great
variety of bulbs, roots, and berries. The coafts
are frequented by large flocks of fea-birds, the
fame which are obferved upon the fhore of the
fea of Penfhinfk.
Auguft 4, 1759, the Peter and Paul, fitted out
at the expence of the merchant Rybenfkoi, by his
agent Andrew Serebranikof, and manned with
thirty-three perfons, fet fail from the mouth of
the Kamtchatka river. They fteered fouthwards
until the 20th of September, without feeing land,
when they ftood for the Aleutian Ifles, one of
which they reached on the 2 7th. They remained
there until the 24th of June, 1761; during which
time they killed one thoufand nine hundred fea-
otters, and obtained four hundred and fifty by
. * Alaksa or Alaxa is laid down by Cook in his chart as,
a promontory of the American continent; but subsequent
navigators in conformity with these daily  accounts still
Pf>pose it to be an island.—-Sauer, p. 17-i.
barter FROM 174t TO 1778.
barter with the iflanders. The Coffac Minya-
chin,whowas on board as collector of the tribute,
in his account calls the firft ifland by the Ruf*
fian name of Krugloi, or Round Ifland, which
he fuppofes to be about fixty verfts in circumference: the largeft ifland lies thirty verfts
from thence, and is about an hundred and
fifty round; the final left is about thirty verfts
from the latter, and is forty in circumference.
Thefe three iflands contain feveral high rocky
mountains. The number of inhabitants was
computed to be about forty-two men, befides
women and children.
;,y; ./■    v  chap. 7.
Voyage of Andrean Tolftyk in the St. Andrean
and Natalia, 1760.—Difcovery of fome new
Iflands called Andreanofjkie Oflrova.—Defcription of fix of thofe Iflands.—Account of
the Inhabitants--~The Veffel wrecked upon the
Coafl of Kamtchatka.
THE moft remarkable voyage hitherto made
is that of the St. Andrean and Natalia, of
which a narrative is extracted from the journals
of the two Coffacs, Peter Wafyutinfkoi and
Maxim Lafarof. This veffel, fitted out by
Andrean Tolftyk, left the mouth of the Kamtchatka river September 27, 1760, ftood out to
L 4 fea
V jSsS'Cf.e'j1 .:"V
,.A|t*»-' -**t.
£a Wi
■' ;i&
Tea eaftward; and on the 29th reached Beering's
Ifland.    There fhe lay at anchor in a bay, from
whence the crew landed all the tackle and lading.
Soon afterwards they were driven afhore by a
violent autumnal ftorm, without any other damage than the lofs of an anchor.    Here they
paffed the winter;   and after refitting, put to
fea June 24, 1761 ; paffed Copper Ifland, and
fleered S. E. towards the Aleutian ifles, which
they did not   reach till   the   6th of   Auguft.
They eaft anchor in an open bay near Attak,
in order  to procure  an interpreter from the
Toigon Tunulgafen; but he being dead, they
fent   prefents   to   the Toigon   Bakutun.    As
three fhips were already lying at anchor before
this ifland, on the 19th/ they again ftood out to
fea in queft of the more diftant iflands, for the
purpofe of exacting a tribute, carrying on board
a relation of the Toigon Bakutun, who had a
flight knowledge of the Ruffian language.   They
fteered N. E. and N. E. by E. and were* driven,
on the 28th, by a gale of wind towards an ifland,
where they immediately eaft anchor.    The foK
lowing morning the two Coffacs, with a party
of eight perfons, went afhore, but faw no inhabitants.    Auguft 30, the veffel was brought
into a fafe bay, and the next day fome of the
crew were fent afhore to   procure wood for
refitting, but no large trees were found upon
the FROM I74I TO I778.
the whole ifland.    Lafarof, one of the party,
[who had been there before in Serebranikof's
I veffel, called the ifland Ayagh or Kayaku, and
mother, which lay about the diftance of twenty
rerfts, Kanaga.    In returning to the fhip, they
tfaw two   iflanders rowing  in   baidars   towards
Kanaga, one of whom had ferved as an interpreter, and was known to Lafarof;  he presented  them with fome frefh provifion, which
[they gratefully accepted, and   continued their
courfe acrofs the ftrait to Kanaga.    Soon afterwards  Lafarof and eight men rowed over to
that ifland, and invited the Toigon, who was a
[relation of the interpreter, to pay them a vifit
[at Kayaku.
Near the place where the veffel lay at anchor,
la rivulet falls into the bay; it flows from a
lake two or three verfts in circumference,
jand formed from a number of fmall fprings.
jThe courfe of the rivulet is eight verfts, and
jn fummer feveral fpecies of falmon and other
jfifh, fimilar to thofe found at Kamtchatka,
afcend the ftream as far as the lake.
Lafarof was employed in fifhing in this rivulet, when the Toigon of Kanaga, accompanied
with a confiderable number of the natives in
fifteen baidars, arrived at the fhip: they were
hofpitably entertained, and received feveral
prefents. The Ruffians embraced this opportunity
K'^'mr.  -
HI fJ&
L *54
tunity of perfuading the iflanders to acknowledge
themfelves fubject to the Emprefs, and to pay
a regular tribute.
As foon as the veffel was laid up in a fecure
place, Tolftyk, Vaffyutin, and Lafarof, with feveral others, went in four baidars to Kanaga.
Tolftyk remained upon that ifland; but Vaffyutin and Lafarof rowed in two baidars to
Tfetchina, which is feparated from Kanaga by
a ftrait about feven verfts in breadth; the
iflanders received them amicably, and promifed
to pay tribute. The feveral parties returned
all fafe to Kayaku, but without having procured any furs. Soon afterwards Tolftyk difpatched fome hunters in four baidars to Tagalak, Atchu, and Amlak, which lay to the eaft
of Kayaku; as none of thefe parties met with,
any oppofition from the natives, they remained*
in great tranquillity upon thefe feveral iflands
until 1764. Their fuccefs in hunting was not
great, for they caught no more than one
thoufand eight hundred and eighty full grown
fea-otters, feven hundred and feventy-eight
middle-aged, and three hundred and feventy-
two cubs.
Lafarof thus defcribes the fix iflands* which
* These are the six islands described by Mr.  Stsehlin
in his description of the New Archipelago.
r FROM  1741   TO I778.
|lie in a chain fomewhat to the north-weft of
he Fox Iflands, and muft not be confounded
ith them. The firft certain account was
rough t by this veffel, the St. Andrean and Na-
alia, from whence they are called the Andrean-
ffkie. Oftrova, or the Iflands of St. Andrean.
Ayagh is a hundred and fifty verfts in cir-
umference, contains feveral high and rocky
ountains, the intervals of which are bare heath
d moor ground. Not one foreft tree is to be
und upon the whole ifland. The vegetables
em for the moft part like thofe of Kamtchatka,
fo crow* or crakeberries and the larger fort of
ilberries, but in fmall quantities, and an abun-
nce of the roots of burnet and all kinds of
ake weed, fufficient in cafe of neceffity, to
urnifh a plentiful provifion for the inhabitants.
Che rivulet already defcribed is the only one in
be ifland. The number of inhabitants cannot
afcertained, becaufe the natives pafs con-
nually from ifland to ifland in their baidars.
Kanaga lies weft from Ayagh, is two hundred
erfts in circumference, and contains a high vol-
ano, where the natives find fulphur iri fum-
er;* at the foot of this mountain are hot
rings, in which they occafionally boil their pro-
* Empetrum,   Vaccin.   Uliginosum,   Sanguisorba,   &
ma MR
vifion. On this ifland there is no rivulet, and
the low grounds are fimilar to thofe of Ayagh.
The inhabitants amount to two hundred.
Tfetchina lies eaftward forty verfts from Kanaga, and is eighty in circumference. It is full
of rocky mountains, of which the moft lofty is
the Bielaia Sopka, or White Peak. In the
valley there are alfo fome warm fprings, but no
rivulet abounding in fifh; the ifland contains
only four families.
Tagalak is forty verfts in circumference, ten?
eaft from Tfetchina;   it contains a few rocks,j
but neither rivulets with fifh, nor any vegetable
production fit for fuftenance.    The coafts are
rocky, and dangerous;   this ifland  is alfo inhabited by no more than four families.
Atchu lies in the fame pofition forty verfts
diftant from Tagalak, is three hundred' in]
circumference, and provided with a harbour, J
where fhips may ride fecurely at anchor. It
contains many rocky mountains, and feveral
fmall rivulets that fall into the fea, one of which
running eaftwards abounds in fifh. The roots
juft mentioned, and bulbs of white lilies are
found in plenty. The inhabitants amount to
about fixty.
Amlak   is a mountainous ifland more than
feven verfts eaftward from Atchu, and is alfo
three hundred in circumference.    It contains
v the FROM   1741   TO   I778.
the fame number of inhabitants as Atchu, has a
commodious haven, and produces roots in abundance. Of feveral fmall rivulets, one only,
which flows towards the north, contains any
fifh. Befides thefe, a clufter of other iflands
was obferved ftretching farther to the eaft.
The inhabitants of thefe fix iflands are tributary to Ruffia; they dwell in fubterraneous
cabins, in which they make no fires but in
winter when the weather is cold; they burn a
heap of dry grafs, over which they fland and
catch the heat. Their clothes are made like
fhirts, of the fkins of the *guillimot and puffin,
which they catch with fpringes. Over thefe in
rainy weather they wear an upper garment,
made of the bladders and other dried inteftines
of feals and fea-lions oiled and ftitcheel together.
The clothes of the women and children are
made of fea-otter fkins in the fame form as
thofe of the men. They catch cod and turbot
with bone-hooks, and eat them raw. As they
never collect a ftore of provifion, they fuffer
greatly from hunger in ftormy weather, when
they cannot venture out to fifh, at which time
they are reduced to live upon fmall fhell-fiftt
and fea-wrack, which they gather upon the*
beach.   In May and June when the weather
.  :\*cm
Colymjjus Troile, Alcs^ Arctica.
im "^Arf'~,."
•     A^
is calm they row out in their baidars, and harpoon fea-otters and fea-dogs.
Whenever they pafs the night at a diftance
from home, they dig a hole in the earth, and lay
themfelves down, covered only with their
clothes and mats of platted grafs. Regardlefs
of every thing but the prefent moment, deftitute
of religion, and without the leaft appearance of
decency, they feem but few degrees removed
from brutes.
As foon as the hunting parties were returned,
and the veffel prepared for departure, the Toigons of thefe iflands (excepting Kanaga) came
in baidars to Tolftyk, accompanied with a confiderable number of natives; their names were
Tfarkulini, Tfhunila, Kayugotfk and Mayatok.
They brought a voluntary tribute, with prefents
of dried falmon, and unanimoufly expreffed fa-
tisfaaion at the good condud of the Ruffians.
Tolftyk gave them in return toys and other trifles, and defired thein to recommend to the in3
habitants of the other iflands the  like friendly
behaviour towards the Ruffian merchants who
fhould vifit them.
June 14, 1764, they failed for Kamtchatka,
and anchored on the 19th before Shemiya, one
of the Aleutian Iflands. The 21ft they were
forced from their anchor by tempeftuous winds,
and driven upon a rocky coaft.    This accident
obliged FROM I74I TO I778.
bbliged them to fend their lading afhore, and to
praw the fhip on land in order to repair the
damage, which was effected with much difficulty.
jOnthe 18th of Auguft they ftood out to fea,
md reached Atchu, on the. 20th. Having
fprung a leak, they again refitted the veffel 5
Mid, after taking on board the crew of a fhip
btely eaft away, failed for Kamtchatka. Or*
die 4th of September they came in fight of that
peninfula near Tzafchminfkoi Oftrog, and on
j;he 18th, as they endeavoured to enter the
pouth of the Kamtchatka river, were forced by
florin upon the fhore; the veffel was deftroyed,
id great part of the cargo loft.
I CHAP. 8.
Voyage of the Zacharias and Elizabeth, fitted
out by Kulkoff, and commanded by Drufinin*
1762—They fail to Umnak and to Unalafhka,
where they winter—The Veffel deftroyed- and
all the Crew murdered by the Iflanders, except
four—Their Adventures and wonderful Efcape*.
[SHALL here barely mention that a veffel
was fitted out in Auguft, 1760, at the ex-
)ence of Terrenti Tfebaeffkoi; but I fhall have
)ccafion to be very circumftantial in my accounts ansa
ff*Ji =
counts concerning feveral others, which failed
during the following years, as more copious information concerning the Fox Iflands was procured from thefe voyages, although for the
moft part unfortunate, than from all the preceding ones.
In 1762 four veffels failed for the Fox
Iflands; of which only one returned to Kamt-j
The firft was the Zacharias and Elizabeth,
fitted out by Kulkof, a merchant of Vologda,
and Company, under the command of Drufinin,
and manned by thirty-four Ruffians, and three
September 6, they departed from Okotfk, and
arrived October the 11th in the haven of St.]
Peter and Paul, where they wintered. June
54, 1763, they again put to fea, and having
reached, in eleven days, the neareft Aleutian]
Iflands, anchored before Attak. They remained here about fourteen days, and took on
board feven Ruffians whohad been fhipwrecked
on this coaft. Among thefe was Korelin, who
returned to Kamtchatka, and gave this account
of the voyage.
July the 17th, they failed from Attak towards
the more diftant ifles, landed upon an ifland,
where the crew of the Andrian and Natalia was
m 91:
FROM   1741   TO   I778.
ngaged in hunting, and, having laid in a fupply
f water, continued their voyage.
In the beginning of September they arrived
at Umnak, one of the Fox Iflands; eaft anchor
about a verft from the fhore, and found Giot-
|tof's veffel, whofe voyage will be mentioned in
fucceeding chapter*. Drufinin immediately
ifpatched his firft mate Maefniflc, and Korelin,
ith thirty-four of the crew-on fhore. They
affed over to the eaftern extremity of the ifland,
hich was diftant about feventy verfts from the
effel, and returned on the 12th of September.
During this expedition, they faw feveral remains
f fox-traps fet by the Ruffians, and met with
fome natives who fhewed tribute-quittances.
The fame day letters were brought by the
iflanders from Medvedef and Korovin f, who
^ere juft arrived at Umnak and Unalafhfka in
two ve'ffels fitted out by the merchants Protaffof
nd Trapefnikof, and anfwers were returned by
he fame meffengers.
On the 22d, Drufinin failed to the northern
oint of Unalafhka, which lies about fifteen
erfts from Umnak; the crew having laid up
he veffel in a fafe harbour, and brought the
ading afhore, made preparation to conftruct an
* Chap. 10.
t See the following chapter.
:; s;.
.-& Bg*S
hut. Soon after their arrival, two Toigons ol
the neareft village voluntarily brought hoftages
and their example was immediately followed bd
feveral of the more diftant villages. Having received information of an hunting party fent froir
Trapefnikof's fhip, Maefnifk difpatched threq
companies on the fame errand, one confiftind
of eleven men, among whom was Korelin, undei
the command of Peter Tfekalef; a fecond oil
the fame number, under Michael KudyakofJ
and a third of nine- men, under Yephtm KafkifcJ
fyn. Tfekalef's Was the only one of which wq
have received any circumftantial account; foi
not a fingle perfon of the other two, or of thd
crew remaining on board, ever returned t<|
Kafkitfyn remained near the haven, and two
other companies were difpatched to the northerr
point of the ifland. Kudyakof flopped at 1
place called Kalaktak, which contained aboui
forty inhabitants. Tfekalef went to Inalokj
which lies about thirty verfts from Kalaktak,
Having found a dwelling with about feventy in J
habitants, to whom he behaved with kindnefs,
be built an hut^ and kept a conftant watch.
December 4, fix of the party being difpatched
to look after the pit-falls, there remained only
five Ruffians, Peter Tfekalef, Stephen Korelin,
Dmitri Bragin, Gregory Shaffyrin,  and Ivan
Nfel FROM   I74I   TO   1778.
jRokovin, the iflanders therefore feized this opportunity of giving the firft proof of their hoftile
intentions. As Tfekalef and Shaffyrin were
upon a vifit to the iflanders, they fuddenly,
[and without any provocation, ftruck Tfekalef
upon the head with a clubj and flabbed him
with knives. They next fell upon Shaffyrin,
who defended himfelf with a hatchet; and though
defperately wounded, forced his way back to his
companions. Bragin and Korelin, who remained in the hut, had immediate recourfe to
heir fire-arms; but Kokovin, who was at a
fmall diftance, was furrounded by the favages,
[thrown down, and flabbed with knives and
darts, until Korelin came to his affiftance; who
having wounded two, and driven away the
bthers, brought his companion half-dead to the
Soon afterwards the natives furrounded the
hut, which the Ruffians had taken the precau-
ion to provide with loop holes. The fiege
afted four days without intermiffion. The
{landers were prevented indeed by the fire-
rms from ftorming the hut; but whenever the
uffians made their appearance, darts were im-
[ediately fhot at them from all fides; fo that
ey could not venture out for water. At
engih, when Shaffyrin and Kokovin were a
little recovered, they all fallied out upon the
i M 2 iflanders
tee :ee 'ar
J|ll :
%'. ■•'
m ^B
m ass
1 >*?: XWL^mSi
iflanders with their guns and lances; killed
three, wounded feveral, and difperfed the reft.
During the fiege the favages were obferved at
a little diftance holding up in triumph fome
arms and caps, which belonged to the fix Ruffians who were fent to the pit-falls, and had
been maffacred by the natives.
The natives at length difappearing, the Ruffians dragged the baidar into the  fea,  rowed
without moleftation out of the bay, which is
about ten verfts broad, landed near a fmall habitation, and finding it empty, drew the baidar
afhore, and traverfed, with their  fire-arms and
lances, the mountains towards Kalaktak, where
they had left Kudyakofs party.    As they approached that place towards evening, they fired!
from the heights; but no fignal being returned,!
they concluded as was really the cafe, that this
company had alfo been maffacred by the inha-j
bitants.    They themfelves narrowly efcaped the
fame fate; for, on the report of the fire-arms, j
numerous bodies of the iflanders made their ap*J
pearance, and clofely purfued them; the nightj
however favoured their efcape over the fandy j
fhore of a bay to a rock, where they were fhel-l
tered, and with   their   fire-arms,   ooliged the I
iflanders to retire.    As foon as their affailantsl
were withdrawn, the Ruffians proceeded towards!
the haven, where they had left their veflel at an-l
1 FROM I74I  TO I778.
Ichor.    They  ran without  interruption during
■ the whole night; and at break of day, when
■ they were about three verfts from the haven,
I efpied a locker of the veffel lying on the fhore.
I Struck with this alarming difcovery, they precipitately   retreated to  the  mountains;   from
I whence they defcried feveral iflanders rowing
in baidars, but faw no appearance of their own
I veffel. During that day they concealed themfelves
and did not venture again towards the\haven
[ till the evening. Upon their arrival they found
the veffel broken to pieces, and the mangled bodies of their companions fcattered on tne beach.
Having collected all the provifion which had
been untouched by the favages, they returned
to the mountains.
The following day they fcooped out a cavity
at the foot of a mountain about three verfts
from the haven, and covered it with a piece of a
fail. In the evening they again repaired to the
haven, where they found an image of a faint and
a prayer-book; but all the tackle and lading
were taken away, excepting the leather facks
for provifion, which the natives had ripped up,
and left as ufelefs. The Ruffians collected all
that remained; and dragged as much as they
were able to their retreat in the mountains,
where they lived in a very wretched ftate from
M 3 the i66
the 9th of December to the 2d of February,
Mean while they employed themfelves' in
making a little baidar, which they covered with
the leather of the facks.; At night they drew it
from the mountains to the fea, and rowed along
the northern fhore of Unalafhka, in hopes of
reaching TrapefnikoPs vefjel, which they finx-
pofed. lay at anchor upon the coaft. They
Jcept at fome diftance from the fhore, and by
that means, paffed three habitations unperceived.
The following day they obferved five iflanders
in a baidar, who feeing them retired to Maku-
fhinfk, before which place they were obliged™
pafs. Darknefs comfng on, the Ruffians landed
on a rock, and paffed the night afhore. Early
in the morning, difcovering the iflanders ad-,.-
vancing towards them from the bay of Ma-
Jcufhinfk, they placed themfelves in an ad van-?
tageous poft and prepared for defence.
The favages rowed clofe to the beach; part
landing, and   part remaining in their baidar&j
they commenced the affault by a volley of darts^l
and notwithftanding * the Ruffians did great execution with their fire-arms, the fkirmifh continued the whole   day.    Towards evening the
enemy retired, and the fugitives betook themii
ielyes with their baidar to an adjoining cavern,
\ ,     '   : . II   '%-    The FROM 1741 TO 1778.
The attack was again renewed during the night;
[but the Ruffians repulfed the affailants without
! much'difficulty. In this encounter Bragin was
flightly wounded. They remained in this place
three days; but the rife of the fpring-tide
forced them to fally out towards a neighbouring cavern, which they reached without lofs,
notwithftanding the( oppofition of the iflanders.
They were confined in this cave five weeks,
and kept watch by turns. During that time
they feldom ver.cured twenty yards from the
entrance; and were obliged to quench their
thirft with fnow-water, and with the moifture
dripping from the rock. They alfo fuffered
greatly from hunger, having no fuftenance but
fmall fhell-fifh, which they occafionally collected on the beach. Compelled at length
by extreme want, they one night ventured to
draw their baidar into the fea, and fortunately
efeaped without being perceived
They continued their progrefs at night, but
in the day, 1ud themfelves on the fhore, by
Wriich means they reached Trapefnikof's veffel
the 30th of March, 1764. What happened to
them afterwards in company with the crew of
this veffel will be mentioned in the fucceeding
chapter.    Shaffyrin died during  the voyage;
M 4 but
but Korelin, Kokovin, and Bragin*, returned
fafe to Kamtchatka.    The names of thefe brave
men deferve to be recorded for the courage)
and perfeverance  with   which they fupported
and overcame fuch imminent dangers.
CHAP. 9.
Voyage of the Veffel called the Trinity, under the
command of Korovin, 1762—Winters at Una- I
la/Iika—Puts to Sea in the Spring—Stranded
in a Bay of the Ifland Umnack, and the Crew
attacked by the Natives—Many of them killed
Others carried off by Sicknefs—Are reduced
to great Streights—Relieved by Glottof, twelve
of the whole Company only remaining—Defcrip-
iion of Umnack and Unalqflika—and Account
of the Inhabitants.
rTP!HE fecond veffel which failed from Kamt-
-*•    chatka in the year 1762, was the Trinity,
fitted out by the trading company of Nikiphor
* These Russians were well known to several persons of
Credit, who have confirmed the authenticity of this rela*
tion. Among the rest, the celebrated naturalist Pallas
saw Bragin at Irkutsk: from him he had a narrative of•
their adventures and escape; which, as he assured me,
perfectly tallied with tfie above account, drawn from the
journal of Korelin.
Trapek FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
Trapefnikof, merchant of Irkutfk, under the command of Ivan Korovin, and manned with thirty-
eight Ruffians and fix Kamtchadals.
September 15, they failed down the Kamtchatka river, ftood out to fea the 29th, were
driven at large for ten days by contrary winds,
on the 8th of October eaft anchor on the fouth
fide of Beering's Ifland, laid up the veffel in
a fecure harbour, and brought the lading afhore.
They ftaid here until the firft of Auguft, 1763,
and killed about five hundred arctic foxes and
only twenty fea-otters, which reforted lefs frequently to this ifland, in confequence of being
diflurbed by the Ruffian hunters.
Korovin, having collected a fufficient ftore of
provifions, feveral fkins of fea-cows for the
:overings of baidars, and fome iron which renamed from the wreck of Beering's fhip, prepared to depart. Upon his arrival at Beering's
[fland the preceding autumn, he found there a
/effel fitted out by Jacob Protaffof, merchant of
riumen, under the command of Dennis Med-
/edef*, with whom Korovin entered into a
formal contract for the divifionof the furs.    He
This is the fourth vessel which sailed in 176*2. As the
whole crew were massacred by the savages, we, have no account of the voyage; mention of this massacre is occasionally made in- this and the following chapters.
took 170
took onboard ten of Medvedef's crew, and gave
him feven in return.
Auguft 1, Korovin put to fea from Beering's
Ifland with thirty-feven men, and Medvedef
with forty-nine. They failed without coming in
fight of the Aleutian Ifles; and on the 15th,
Korovin made Unalafhka, where Glottof lay at
anchor, and Medvedef reached Umnak. Korovin received the news of his fafe arrival hy
fome iflanders, and afterwards by letters, as both i
veffels lay at no greater diftance from each
other than a hundred and fifty verfts.
Korovin anchored in a convenient bay at th6
diftance of fixty yards from the fhore.    On thej
16th he landed with fourteen men ; but finding
only  an  empty fhed,  returned to  the veffel* I
After, having taken a reinforcement, he again j
went afhore in fearch  of inhabitants.    About I
feven verfts from  the haven, he came to twdi
habitations,  and   faw   three   hundred   perfons,
among   them three Toigons, recollected   afridl
accofted  in  a friendly  manner   Barnafhef, a
native of Tobolfk, who had been there before =
with Glottof.    They lhewed fome tribute-quittances,  which   they had lately received fromj
the Coffac Sabin   Ponomaref.    Two of thefe
Toigons gave each a boy of twelve years of age
as an  hoftage,  whom   they  paffed for   their]
I Children ; and the third delivered  his fon of
about i FROM   1741   TO   I778,
about fifteen years of age> the fame who had been
JklottoPs hoftage, and whom Korovin called
lexey. %With thefe hoftages he returned to
be fhip, which he laid up in the mouth of a
river, and brought all the provifion and lading
afhore. Soon afterwards the three Toigons
came to fee the hoftages, and informed Koro-
yin, that Medvedef's veffel rode fecurely at
anchor off Umnak.
September 15, every thing being prepared for
wintering, Korovin and Barnafhef fet out in two
Daidars, each with nine men and one of the
loftages, who had a flight knowledge of the
Ruffian language. They went along the northern
:oaft of the ifland, towards its weftern extremity,
In order to hunt, and to enquire after an interpreter called Kafhmak, who had been for-
berly employed by Glottof. Having rowed
ibout twenty verfts, they paffed a village, and
5ve verfts beyond, landed at another; but as the
number of inhabitants amounted to two hundred,
they durft not venture* to the dwellings. Upon
kbis the Toigon of the place came to them with
his wife and fon; he fhewed a tribute-quittance,
and delivered his fon, a boy of thirteen years of
age, whom Korovin called Stepanka, as a
hoftage, for which he received a prefent of
They now rowed to a third village, five verfts
> e ■■;»£«
'£ A    ^, ■
fit&- e- -
from the former, where they found the interpreter Kafhmak: he accompanied them to the
two Toigons who gave them a friendly recep-
tion, and fhewed tribute-quittance^. A few natives only made their appearance ; the reft as
the Toigons pretended were gone out to fifh.
The next morning each Toigon gave a boy as
a hoftage; one of the boys Korovin called
Gregory, and the other Alexey. The Ruffians
were detained two days by a violent ftorm:
during which time a letter from Medvedef was
brought by an Aleutian, and an anfwer returned
by the fame perfon. The ftorm at length
abating, they rowed back to the next village;
where they continued two nights without any
apprehenfions from the favages, and Korovfj
returned in fafety with the hoftages.
In the beginning of October they built a hutj
partly of wood, and partly of feal-fkins, and
made preparations for hunting. On the 14^
two companies, each confifling of eleven men,
were fent on a hunting party to the eaftern
point of the ifland, and returned in four days
with hoftages. About fixty verfts from the
haven, they met a party of twenty-five Ruffians,
commanded by Drufinin; at the fame time fome
Toigons brought a prefent of flurgeon and
whales' blubber, and received in return beads
and provifion.
Koro- FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
Korovin and his company now thought themfelves fecure, and twenty-three men, under the
command of Barnafhef, were difpatched in two
iaidars on a hunting party towards the weftern
joint of the ifland.    Eight mufkets were dif-
iributed to each boat, a piftol and a lance to each
lan, and a fufficient flore  of ammunition  and
jrovifion.    The following  day   two   accounts
rere fent from Barnafhef, and letters were alfo
received from the crew of Protaffof's veffel.
'rom the 2d of November to the 8th of December, the Ruffians who  remained with Korovin,
Ikilled forty-eight dark-coloured foxes, together
with a hundred and feventeen of the common
[fort;   during this expedition one man was lost.
[Some of the natives came  occafionally in bai-
pars, and exchanged fea-otter and fox fkins for
[corals.    On the 8th of December letters were
[again brought from Barnafhef, alfo from the crew
[of Protaffof's fhip, and anfwers were returned
[by the fame meffengers.
After their departure the mother of Alexey
[came with a meffage from the Toigon her huf-
band, importing that a number of iflanders were
advancing towards the fhip. Korovin accordingly ordered the men to arm, and foon after,
feventy natives approached, and held up fome
fea-otter fkins. The Ruffians criedout that no
more than ten at; a time fhould come over the
i. ~ ". 1
a>S i?4
brook towards their hut; upon which tnej
iflanders left their fkins with Korovin, and re J
turned without hoftilities. Their appretienfion J
were now fomewhat quieted, but again excitedj
by the arrival of three Kamtchadals belonging tel
Kulkof's fhip, who flew for protection to Ko-I
rovin ; they brought an account that the crewl
had been killed by the favages, and the veffel|
deftroyed. It was now certain that the feventyl
iflanders had come with hoftile intentions. This]
information fpread fo fudden a panic among the!
Ruffians, that it was even propofed to burn the]
veffel, and to endeavour to find their companions, who were difperfed on hunting parties.
The day however paffed without any attack,!
but towards the evening of the 10th of December, the favages affembled in large bodies, and
invefted the hut on all fides, and for four days
and nights inceflantly annoyed the Ruffians withi
their darts 5 two of them were killed, and the
furvivors nearly exhaufted by continual fatigue*
On the fifth day the iflanders took poll in a
neighbouring cavern, where they continued
watching the Ruffians fo clofely during a whole
month, that none of them durft venture fifty
paces from their dwelling. Korovin, finding
himfelf thus harraffed, ordered* the hut to be
deftroyed, and then retired to his veffel, which
Was brought for greater fecurity out  of the
mouth *$&
FROM   1741   TO   I778.
mouth of the rivulet to the diftance of a hundred
lyards from the beach : there they lay at anchor
from the 5th of March to the 26th of April,
fuffering greatly from want of provifion, and ftill
more from the fcurvy.
During this period they were attacked by a
Ijarge body of the natives, vho advanced with
forty baidars, in hopes of furprifing the veffel.
Korovin was warned of their approach by two
of the inhabitants, one of whom was a relation of
the interpreter Kafhmak, and prepared for their
reception. On their approach Korovin fired
and killed one perfon, when they were ftruck
with a panic and rowed away. Incenfed at tbwt
failure they immediately, put to death the two
j natives, who had betrayed their defign to the
I Ruffians. Soon after the father of Alexey came
I and demanded his fon, who was reftored to
Ihigi: and on the 30th of March Korelin and
his three brave companions arrived as is men-
I tioned in the preceding chapter; by which re-
|&&forcement the number of the crew amounted
to eighteen perlons.
April 26, Korovin put to fea from Unalafhka
[with eleven hoftages.,   The veffel was driven
j until the 28th. by  contrary winds, and  then
I fended in a bay of the ifland Umnak.    The
I ammunition and fails, together wfd* the fkins for
the conilruQaon Of baidars, were brought afhore
*£& 176
with great difficulty.    During the difembarkJ
ation one fick man was drowned ; another,diec
as foon as he reached the land, and eight hoftagel
ran away amidft  the  general  confufion.    The)
faithful interpreter Kafhmak and three hoftagei
however remained.    The whole number of thd
Ruffians amounted only to fixteen, and of thefej
three were   afflicted with the  fcurvy.    Unden
thefe  circumftances   they   fecured   themfelvesl
between their baidar and fome empty barrels,!
which they covered with feal fkins, while thel
fails were fpread over them in form of atent.l
Two Ruffians kept watch;   and there being nop
^appearance  of iflanders, the others  retired to!
Before break of day, about an hundred favages advancing fecretly from the fhore threwi
their darts at the diftance of twenty yards with I
fuch force, that many pierced the baidar and
fkins; others paffed through the fails. By this
difcharge, the two perfons who kept watch, together with the three hoftages, were killed on
the fpot, and all the Ruffians wounded. They
Were indeed fo effectually furprifed, as to be
prevented from having recourfe to their firearms. In this diftrefs Korovin fallied forth
with four Ruffians and attacked the enemy with
lances; two of the favages were killed, and the
others driven to  flight; but Korovin and his
party FROM   I74I   TO   I77S1
laity were fo feverely wounded, that they had
larcely ftrength fufficient to return to their
During   the night the ftorm increafed and
ifhed the veffel to pieces, and the greater part
the wreck which was eaft on fhore, was carried
[ay by the iflanders.    After breaking the bar-
i\s of fat, emptying the facks of provifion, and
iftroying moft of the furs, they went away, and
id not again make their  appearance  until the
>th of April.    When they retired, the Ruffians
bllected the wretched remains which had been
bft untouched  by the  favages, or which the
aves had eaft a-fhore fince their departure.
April 30, a body of pne hundred and fifty
fatives advanced from the eaftern part of the
Band towards the tent; and at the diftance of
Lndred yards, fhot at the Ruffians with fire-
;ms, but luckily without effect.    They alfo fet
in fire the high grafs, and the wind blew the
[ames towards the tent; but the Ruffians having
[reed the enemy to retreat, gained time to ex-
nguifh the flames.
This was the laft attack, although ficknefs and
lifery detained Korovin and his companions on
lis fpot until the 21ft of July. They then put
fea in a baidar eight yards long, which they
lad conftructed in order to make to ProtaffoPs
feffel, with whofe fate they were as yet un-
N ac- 178
acquainted.    Their number was now reduced 1
to twelve, among whom were fix Kamtchadals.
After rowing ten days, they landed on the
beach of the fame ifland Umnack; and there
obferved the burnt) remains of a veffel, and \
fragments of clothes, fails, and ropes. At a
fmall diftance was an empty Ruffian dwelling,
and near it a bath-room, in which they found, to
their inexpreffible terror, twenty dead bodies in
their clothes. Each of them had a thong of
leather, or his own girdle fattened about his
neck, with which he had been ftrangled. Korovin and his companions recognifed them at
part of. Protaffof's crew ; and diftinguifhed
among the reft the commander Medvedef. They
difcovered no traces of the remainder; and, as:
none ever appeared, we have no account of thei
circumftances attending this cataftrophe.
Having buried their countrymen, Korovin
and his companions began to build a hut; but
were prevented from finifhing it, by the unexpected arrival of Stephen Glottof*, who came
to them with a fmall party by land. Korovin
and his companions joined Glottof, and rowed
- the next day to his veffel.
Soon afterwards Korovin was   fent with a
party of twenty to coaft the ifland of Umnack,
See the following chapter.
in FROM   1741   TO   1778,
in order to difcover if any part of Medvedef *s
crew had made their efcape; but his enquiries
were without fuccefs. In the courfe of this ex=
pedition, as he lay at anchor, in September,
before a fmall ifland fituated between Umnack
and Unalafhka, fome favages rowed towards the
Ruffians in two large baidars; and fhot at then*
with fire-arms, though without effect. The fame
evening Korovin entered a bay with an intention
of paffing the night on fhore; but, as he approached the coaft, a number of favages in a
hundred baidars furrounded and faluted him with
a volley of darts. Korovin fired, and having dif-
perfed them, made to a large baidar, which he
few at fome diftance, in hopes of finding Ruffians.. He was however miftaken; the iflanders
who were aboard landed at his approach; and
after fhooting at him with fire-arms, retired to
the mountains.
Korovin there found the fame baidar in which
Barnafhef had failed, on a hunting party; within
were only two hatchets and fome iron points
for darts. Three woman were feized at the fame
time; and two natives, who refufed to furrender
themfelves, were put to death. They then went
to the dwelling from which all the inhabitants had
fled, and found therein pieces of leather, blades of
fmall knives, fhirts, and other things, which had
N 2 be- n
belonged to the Ruffians. All the information
which they could procure from the women was,
that the crew had been killed, and this booty
taken away by the inhabitants, who had retired
to Unalafhka. Korovin gave thefe women their
liberty; and, being apprehenfive of frefh attacks, returned to the haven.
Towards winter Korovin, with a party of
twenty-two men, and Ivan Glottof an Aleutian
interpreter, was fent on a hunting expedition
to the weftern point of Unalafhka. Being|
informed by fome iflanders, that a Ruffian
fhip, under the command of Ivan Soloviof *,
was then lying before Unalafhka, he rowed towards the haven where fhe was at anchor. On
the way he had a fharp encounter with the:
natives, who endeavoured to prevent his landing : of thefe, ten were killed; and the reft fled,
leaving behind fome women and children. Ko-
rovin ftaid three days aboard Soloviof's veffel,
and then returned to the place where he had
been attacked. The inhabitants however, made
no oppofition to his landing; but on the contrary, received him with kindnefs, and permitted
him to hunt: they delivered hoftages, entered
into a friendly traffic, exchanging furs for beads,
* Chapter 11,
and '•V''-*'- ;
FROM I74t TO I778.
and even reftored feveral mufkets and other
things, taken from the Ruffians who had been
A fhort time before his departure, the inhabitants again ffiewed hoftile intentions; for
three of them fuddenly attacked the Ruffian
centinel, with knives, but the centinel difengaging
himfelf, and retreating into the hut, they ran
away. The Toigons of the village affected ignorance of this treachery; and the offenders
were foon afterwards difcovered and punifhed.
Korovin, as he was returning to Glottof, was
forced to engage with the iflanders on Una-
lafhka, and alfo on Umnak, where they endeavoured to prevent him from landing. * Before the end of the year a ftorm drove the baidar on the beach of Umnak, and the tempef-
tuous weather fetting in, they were detained
until the 6th of April, 1765, and were reduced
to live chiefly upon fea-wrack, and fmall fhell—
fifh. On the 22d they returned to Glottof, with
an in confiderable cargo of furs. Three days
after his arrival, Korovin quitted Glottof, and
went with five other Ruffians to Soloviof, with
whom he returned the following year to Kamtchatka. The fix Kamtchadals of Korovin's
party joined Glottof.
According to Korovin's account, the iflands
Umnak and Unalafhka are fituated not much
N 3 more
s-i" «>
1 .<.>•■-''«■-'.
»«5 l82
more north than the mouth of the Kamtchatka
river; and, according to the fhip's reckoning,
about the diftance of one thoufand feven hun*
dred verfts eafhvards from the fame place. The
circumference of Umnak is about two hundred
and fifty verfts; Unalafhka is much larger.
Both iflattds are wholly deftitute of trees; buf
drift-wood is brought a-fhore in large quantitiea|
There are five lakes on the northern coaft of
Unalafhka, and one only upon Unmake of which
none exceeded ten verfts in circumference^
Prom thefe lakes iffue feveral fmall rivulets,
which flow only a few verfts before they fall into
the fea. The fifh enter the rivulets in the
middle of April; afcend the lakes in July, and
continue there till Auguft. Sea-otters and
other fea-animals refort but feldom to thefe
iflands; but there are abundance of red and black
foxes. North-eaftward from Unalafhka two
iflands appeared in fight, at the diftance of five
or ten verfts; but Korovin did not touch at
The inhabitants row in fmall baidars from one
ifland to the other, and from this unfettled manner of life their numbers cannot be afcertained.
Their dwellings are made in the following manner : having dug a hole in the earth proportioned
to the fize of their intended habitation, of twenty,
thirty, or forty yards in length, and from fix to.
ten FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
ten broad, they fet up poles of larch, firs, and
ph, and lay planks acrofs, which they cover
with grafs and earth. They enter through
apertures in the top by means of ladders. Fifty,
a hundred, and even a hundred and fifty perfons
dwell together in a cave. As they feldom make
fires within, thefe dwellings are much cleaner
than thofe of the Kamtchadals; but in winter
they warm themfelves by kindling dry herbs.
Several of thefe iflanders wear fur-flockings
in winter; but the greater part go bare-footed, and all without breeches. The fkins of
cormorants, puffins, and fea-divers, ferve for
the mens' cloathing; and the women wear the
fkins of fea-bears, feals, and fea-otters. They
fleep on thick mats, which they twift of a foft
[kind of grafs growing on the fhore, and have
no other covering than their ufual clothes.
Many of the men have five or fix wives; and
the beft hunter or fiflier has the greateft
number. The women make their needles of the
bones of birds' wings, and ufe finews for thread.
Their weapons are bows and arrows, lances
and darts, which, like the Greenlanders, they
throw to the diftance of fixty yards by means of
a little hand board. Both darts and arrows are
feathered; the arrows are an ell and a half
long; the fhaft, which is well made confidering
the want of inftruments, is often compofed of
N 4 two
■tv ?
two pieces joined together, and the point
formed of flint, fharpened by beating it between j
two ftones.    The darts as well as the lances were ]
formerly tipped with bone ; but the points are
now commonly made of iron procured from the
Ruffians, and from which they ingenioufly form
little hatchets and two-edged   knives.    Theyj
fhape the iron by rubbing it between two ftones, j
and wetting it frequently with fea-water.    With I
thefe inftruments and ftone hatchets they build
their baidars.    They have a ftrange cuftom of J
cutting holes in the under-lip and through the
griftle of the nofe | they place in the lip two
little bones, wrought in the form of teeth which
project fome inches from the face, and in the
nofe a piece of bone is inferted crofsways.   The
dead are buried with their boat, weapons, and
*The author repeats here several circumstances which?
have been mentioned before, and many of them will occur
again : but my office as a translator would not suffer me to
omit them0
CHAP. FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
CHAP. 10.
Voyage of Stephen Glottof in the Andrean and
Natalia, 1762—He reaches the Fox Iflands
—"Sails beyond Unalafka to Kadyak—Winters
on that Ifland—Repeated Attempts of the
Natives to deftroy the Crew—They are re-
pulfed, reconciled, and prevailed on to trade
with the Ruffians—Account of Kadyak.—Its
Inhabitants — Animals—-- Produclions — Glottof fails back to Umnak—Winters there—*
Returns to Kamtchatka—Journal of his
THE following voyage, which extended
further, and terminated more fortunately
than the laft expeditions, is one of the moft memorable yet made.
Terenty  Tfebaeffskoi  and   company, merchants of   Lalfk, fitted out   the Andrean and
Natalia under the command of Stephen Glottof, an experienced and fkilful feaman of Ya-
renfk.    This veffel, manned  with  thirty-eight
Ruffians  and  eight  Kamtchadals, failed from
the bay of  the river   Kamtchatka the  iff of
I October,  1762.    In  eight days they reached
I Mednoi Oftrof, or Copper Ifland, and having
I found a convenient harbour, unloaded and laid
;A-^-: e.-
tyl oks
m 4
I l*V*'      •   *& ;'ri^-*j^K- _-."er
up the veffe   for the winter.    They firft fup-J
plied themfelves with provifions;   and  after-
wards killed a quantity of ice-foxes, and a confiderable number of fea-otters.
For the benefit of the crown and their own
ufe in cafe of need, they refolved to take on
board all the remaining tackle and iron-work |
of Beering's fhip, which was buried in the j
beach of Commander's Ifland. For this purpofe
they difpatched, on the 27th of May, Jacob
Malevinfkoy with thirteen men in a baidar to
that ifland, who brought back twenty-two pood
of iron, ten of old cordage fit for caulkers' ufe,
fome lead and copper, and feveral thoufand
Copper Ifland has it^s name from the native I
copper found on the coaft, particularly at the
fouth weftern point. Of this native copper
Malevinfkoy brought two large pieces, weighing
twelve pounds. Amongft other floating bodies
the fea drives on the fhores of this ifland, the
true camphor wood, and another fort very white,
foft, and fweet-fcented, is found.
After making the neceflary preparations for
continuing the voyage, they failed from Copper
Ifland the 26th of July, 1763, and fteered for
Umnak and Agunalafhka, where Glottof had
formerly obferved great numbers of blapk foxes.
On account of ftorms and contrary winds, they
did FROM   1741   TO   I778.
i not reach Umnak till the 24th of Auguft;
d without lofing time, refolved to fail further
the difcovery of new iflands.    They paffed
jht, feparated only by ftraits, which, according
their   eftimation, were   from twenty to an
[ndred verfts broad.    Glottof did not land till
readied the laft and moft eafterly   of thefe
tnds, called by the inhabitants Kadyak, which
fcording to the natives was not far diftant from
coaft of a wide-extended woody continent.
jo land however was to be feen from a little
land denominated  by the  natives  Aktunak,
juated thirty verfts eaft of Kadyak.
September 8, the veffel ran up a creek, fouth
[ft of Aktunak, where a rivulet falls into the
\, which flows from a lake fix verfts long, one
bad, and fifty fathoms deep.    During the ebb,
e veffel was left aground; but the return of
|e water fet her again afloat.    Near the fhore
:re four large huts, fo  crouded with people,
it their number could fcarcely be counted:
it foon after   Glottof's arrival, they quitted
eir dwellings, and retired with precipitation.
he next  day fome  iflanders in baidars  ap-
roached the veffel, and" accofted the people on
>ard: and as Ivan  Glottof,  the Aleutian in-
[rpreter, did not well underftand the language,
ley   foon   afterwards   returned   with   a   boy
[horn they had formerly taken prifoner from
Ifanak, 88
Ifanak, an ifland to the weft of Kadyak. Hil
the Aleutian interpreter perfectly underflooq
and by his means they converfed with the fl
vages, and endeavoured to perfuade them ;
become tributary. They ufed every argumej
in their power to prevail on them to deliva
the boy for an interpreter, but all entreatii
were ineffectual, and the favages rowed bad
towards the cliff called Aktalin, which lies thnj
verfts to the fouth of Kadyak, where the]
feemed to have habitations.
On the 6th of September, Kaplin, who w
fent with thirteen men to the cliff, found u\
huts, which contained a hundred natives. Tha
behaved in a friendly manner, and anfwera
the interpreter by the boy, that they had noboc
proper for an hoftage, but that they would du
liver the boy. Kaplin received him thankfulli
and brought him on board; he afterwards ac
companied Glottof to Kamtchatka, and w
baptized by the name of Alexander Popof, bend
then thirteen. For fome davs after this con
ference, the iflanders came off in companies d
five, ten, twenty, and thirty ; were admitted o
board in fmall numbers, and kindly received
but with a proper degree of circumfpection.
On the 8th of September the veffel wa
brought further up the creek, and on the ot
Glottof with ten  men proceeded to a village
when FROM   1741   TO   I778.
ere the natives had begun to refide: it con*
ed of three fummer-huts covered with long
ifs, from eight to ten yards broad, twelve long,
four high.,   They faw there about an hun-
d men, but neither women nor children, and
they could not perfuade the favages to give
ages,   Glottof  refolved to keep a   ftrong
Although the iflanders vifited them ftill in
11 bodies, their hoftile intentions became
re and more apparent. At laft on the 1 ft of
ober, by day-break, a great number having
embled in the remote parts of the ifland, ap=
Dached without being difcovered by the watch;
d feeing no one on deck but thofe on duty,
3t fuddenly into the veffel with arrows. The
itch found refuge behind the quarter boards,
1 gave the alarm without firing. Glottof
mediately ordered a volley to be fired over
sir heads with fmall arms; upon which they
tantly retreated. At break of day, no enemy
is feen; but they difcovered feveral ladders,
^ndles of hay in which the favages had put ful-
lur, and a quantity of birch-tree bark, left
[hind in their precipitate flight.
Glottof now found it neceflary to be on his
lard againft their evil attempts, and his fuf-
cions were further increafed by the fubfequent
ndu& of the natives; for though they came
' .*j£l
tB i&i
4$:;rL ft
:1 K;if
m:le?t e
to the veffel in fmall bodies, yet they examineci
every thing, and particularly the watch, witi
the   ftricteft jattention,   and   always   returned
without paying regard to the friendly propo.
fitions of the Ruffians.
On the 4th of October two hundred made!
their appearance, carrying wooden fhields before
them, and preparing with bows and arrows foi
an   attack.    Glottof  endeavoured  at firft b)|
perfuafion to prevail upon them to defift; bull
obferving them to continue advancing, he ven-
tured a fally.    The enemy difconcerted by this
intrepidity, retreated without refiftance.
The 26th of October they made a third ad
tack, and advanced towards the veffel by day^
break; the alarm however was given in due time]
and the whole crew were under arms. The approach of day-light difcovered different partiesj
of the enemy advancing under the protection oi
wooden fereens. Of thefe moving breaft-workd
they counted feven, covering from thirty to
forty men armed with bone lances. Befide
thefe a croud of armed men advanced feparatdyj
to the attaek, fome bearing whale jaw-bones,J
and others wooden fhields. Diffuafion proving
ineffectual, and the arrows beginning to fall
even aboard the fhip, Glottof gave orders to\
fire. As the fhot from the fmall arms did not
pierce the fereens, the iflanders advanced with
*}**■ $$s
■ "*ll
FROM  I74I TO I778.
uth fteadinefs and intrepidity. In this im-
unent danger Glottof rifked a fally of his
mole crew, armed with mufkets and lances; the
ganders inftantly threw down their fereens,
3ed with precipitation to their boats, and rowed
:>ff. They had feventeen large baidars and
feveral final] canoes. The fkreens which they
left behind were made of three rows of flakes
placed perpendicularly, and bound together
with fea-weed and offers, twelve feet broad,
und above half a yard thick.
The iflanders now appearing fufficiently in-
1 x O j
jimidated, the Ruffians built a wtinter hut of
Irift wood, and waited the approach of fpring
[vithout further annoyance. Although they
law none of the inhabitants, yet Glottof kept
[is people together; fending out occafionally
Inail hunting and fifhing parties to a lake, five
lerfts from the creek. During the whole winter
Ihey caught in the lake feveral different fpecies
If trout and falmon, foles, and herrings, a fpan
nd a half long, and even turbot and cod-fifh,
Ifhich afcended with the flood.
At laft, on the 25th of December, two
Banders vifited the fhip, and converfed at a
lliftance by means of interpreters ; but foon
lleparted without paying any attention to the
bropofals of peace and trade made by the Ruf-
ians;  nor   did   any  of  them appear again
\'fiA."*.;'» i
;-W'J'.   1       .J
IHKl 192
before the 4th of April. Want of fufficient
exercife in the mean time brought on a violent fcurvy among the crew, of which nine
On the 4th of April four natives made
their appearance, and feemed to pay 4nore attention to the propofals; at laft one of them
advanced, and offered to barter two fox-fkins
for beads. They did not fet the leaft value
upon other goods of various kinds, fuch as
fhirts, linen, and nankeen; but demanded glafe-
beads of different colours, for which they exchanged fkins with pleafure. This friendly
traffic, together with Glottof's entreaties, operated powerfully, and after holding a conful-,
ration with their countrymen, they, returned
with a folemn declaration, that their brethren
would in future commit no hoftilities. From.
that time until their departure a daily intercourfe
was carried on with the iflanders, who brought
fox and fea-otter fkins, and received in exchange
a flipulated number of beads. Some were even
perfuaded to pay a tribute of fkins, for which
receipts were givep.
Among other wares the Ruffians procured
two fmall carpets, curioufly platted and interwoven with beaver-wool like velvet. The
iflanders brought alfo for fale, well dreffed fea-
otter fkins, the hair of which was fhorn with
fharp FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
iarp ftones, and appeared like velvet. The caps
f the natives had furprifing and fometimes not
ngraceful decorations, fome being adorned with
anes like a helmet; others, feemingly peculiar
the females, were made of inteftines ftitched
>gether with rein-deer hair and finews in a
oft elegant tafle, and ornamented on the crown
ith long ftreamers of hair died a beautiful red.
|>f all thefe curiofities Glottof carried famples
> Kamtchatka*.
The natives differ confiderably in drefs and
nguage from the inhabitants of the other Fox
lands; and feveral fpecies of animals were
)ferved upon Kadyak, which are not to be
und on the other iflands, viz. ermines, martens^,
avers, river-otters, wolves, and wild boars,
le tracks of bears were alfo obferved.    Some
the inhabitants had clothes made with the
ins of rein-deer and the jevras, a fort of fmall
armofet.    Both thefe fkins were probably pro-
These and several similar ornaments are preserved
a cabinet of curiosities at the Academy of Sciences of
j Petersburg : a cabinet which well merits the attention
the.curious traveller ; for it contains,a large collection
the dresses of the Eastern nations. Amongst the rest,
p compartment is entirely filled with the dresses, arms,
p implements, brought from the New-discovered islands,
gravings of these caps, dresses, and ornaments, are
ind in Cook, Vancouver? and Sauer.
O cured
.A ..>. 1
.'".; m
cured from the continent of America, $lac^
brown, arl(i re(i foxes, were feen in greaf num.
ber; jand the coaft abounds wit)$ ^-fjpgs, fey
Igears, fea-lions, and fea-otters. The b'jrdsggd
cranes, geefe€-fiuc^, gulls, ptarmigans, 9$&wd
and magpies; but no uncommon fpecies was
ddcovejed. The vegetable productions a$e|$|J
berries, cranberries, whortleberries, and wild
lily-roots. -JCadyak likewife yields pillows and
alders, which affords the ftrongeft proof of its
vicinity tp the confinent. The extent of Kadyak cannot be exactly afcertained; as the
RuffianSjr-through fear of the native^, did not
venture to explore the country.
The inhabitants, like thofe of the Aleutian
and nearer iflands, perforate holes in the under-
lips and the griftle of the nofe, in which they
infert the bones of birds and animals worked
in|o the form of teeth.    Their clothes are made
with tlie fkins gf birds, foxes, fea-otters, young J
rein-deer, and marmofets, fewed together with!
finews.    They wear alfo fur-flocking of reindeer fkins, but no breeches.    Their arms are
bows, arrows, andtances, whofe points, as wefl as I
their fmall hatchets, are of fharp flint: fome few
make knives and lance-points of rein-deer bones.
Their wdoden fhields are called kuyak^whicy
amongft the Greenlanders fignjfies a fmall canoe.
Their manners are altogether rude; they are not j|
courteous fROM 1741 TO 1778*
iourteons to ftrangers, nor do they (hew any
jjfld of deference or fubmiffion to each other.
Some of their canoes contain only one or two
Ijerfbns;   others are larger, apd firnilar to tlje
{omens' boats of the Greenlanders.    Their food
■mfifts chiefly of raw and dried fifh, partly
tughl at fea with bone hooks, and partly in ri-
jilefs, by mearis of bag„nets made of finews.
■ hey call themfelves Kanagift, a name that has
{> fmall refemblance to Karalit; by which ap-
lillation the Greenlanders and Efquimaux on
{e coaft of Labradore diftinguifli themfelves;
je difference between thefe two denominations
i occafioned perhaps by a change of pronun-
Ittion, or by a miftake of the Ruffian faiiors.
heir numbers feem very confiderable on that
rt of the ifland where they had fixed habita-
Kadyak makes with Aghunalafhka, Umnak,
Id the fmall intermediate iflands, a continued
Irchipelago, extending N. E. and E. N. E.
I wards America: it lies by the fhip's reckon-
Ig in 2300of longitude; fo that it cannot be
Jr diftant from that part of the American coaft
hich Beering formerly reached.
[The large ifland Alakfu, lying northward
(|>m Kadyak where Pufhkaref* wintered, moll
See c^agt^r &
be tg6
be ftill nearer the continent: and the account!
given by its inhabitants of a great promontory.j
called Ataktak, ftretching from the continent
N. E. of Alakfu, is not improbable.
Although the conduct of the iflanders ap-l
peared more friendly; yet on account of theiil
numbers Glottof refolved not to pafs anotheJ
winter on Kadyak, and prepared for his depar.{
ture.    He wanted hoops for, repairing his waterJ
cafks, and learning from the   natives that therel
were trees at no great diftance from the bay, htl
difpatched, on the 25 th of April, Lukas FtorufJ
kin with eleven men to fell wood. After rowing!
along the South coaft forty or fifty verfts, he ob I
ferved, half a verft from the fhore, in vallies be-(
tween the rocks,  alders,  fimilar  to   thofe   ol
Kamtchatka;   the largeft of which were fronj
four to feven inches in diameter.    After fellinm
as much wood as he wanted, he returned thcj
fame day without perceiving an iflander or habi-{
tation. gjl
They brought the veffel down the creek ini
May; and, after taking in all the peltry and
flores, left Kadyak on the 24th. Contrary 1
winds retarded their voyage, and drove them;
near the ifland Alakfu, which they paffed; theirl
water being nearly exhaufted, they afterwardsh
landed upon another ifland, called Saktunak, in I \
order to procure a fupply.   At laft on the 3d!
oil <i»f*
FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
of July, they reached Umnak, and anchored in
bay which Glottof had formerly vifited.   Gong   a-fhore   in  a baidar,  he   found  his   hut,
hich  was  in   ruins;   and  near   it   obferved
nother Ruffian dwelling, that had been built in
is abfence; in which lay a murdered Ruffian.
Refolving to procure further  information, he
roffed   the    ifland  the   5th   of   July,   with
(ixteen of his  crew,  and  difcovered  the remains  of a  burnt  veffel, fome prayer-books,
images,   Sec.;    but   all    the    iron-work   and
cordage were carried off.    Near   the fpot he
Pound alfo a bathing room filled with murdered
Ruffians in their clothes.    From fome marks,
e concluded that this was the crew of the vef-
el fitted out by Protaffof; nor was he miftaken
n his conjectures.
Alarmed at the fate of his countrymen,
IBottof returned to the fhip. Seven iflanders
low advanced in baidars, and expreffed a de-
ire to trade. They held up fea-otter fkins at a
iiftance, but would not venture on board ; and
)y the interpreter defired Glottof and two of his
)eople to come on fhore and barter. Glottoff
liftrufting the favages, refufed to comply with
[heir demands; on which they landed, and fired
it the veffel, but without effect. They were
-ven bold enough to row towards the veffel a
econd time.    In order if poflible to procure
O 3 intel-
|e v"
i "-- ■   : I
e-.i;:---      -'
$&■ *
HH exam
intelligence, every method of coneifiating them
was tried by meansi of the interpreters; and at
laft ode? approached the fhip, and demanded victuals, which being thrown to him, he came on
board. He then related the fate of the veffel
feized by the iflanders; and gave fome intelligence concerning the fugitives under tie eotfi-
inand of Korovin. He confeffed,; that then
defign was» to entice GloMof on fho»%elulI
him, and make themfelves matters ©f the fhip;
for which purpofe more than thir-t^ iflanders
were pofted in arabufh rjeMfi&the neareft rx&cbsv
Glottof having detained the iflander on board
landed with a ftrong party, attacked the favages
who fhot both with arrows and mufkets, btf
without effect, and were foon>forced to retire to
eir canoes.
July 14<, a violent ftorm ardfe, in wham Glot<!
tofs veffel parted her cable,, and was force)! gh
fhore, but without any other lofs than that of an
anchor. The 6rew through want of frefh provi*
Sons, became fo fickly, that they werer almoft
defenceJefs. On the a8lteof July, Glottof,. wkW
ten men, wenfc fon that parti ofi the ifland, wherr,
according to information he expected to fibdilfiW
rovin; but difcovered only parts; of the wrecfc
On the 2d of Auguft, as-he was returning, five
iflanders approached him in canoes, and informed  him, that on the other  fide of the
ifland FROM   I74I   TO   I778.
[and lie would find Korovin wfrjrrmi people,
[who were building a hut on the balnlr 6r* a ri-
fiflefr   Glottof andFliis comparitoViW accordingly
fHfef oVer laVitf to the pfate pointed out by the
flaridefs^ and found Korovrh  conformable to
Sti&fifflhafittfii;   The circuttfra^es of their
jfi§ctkm and fef aratfoti are related in the pre-
$fing chapter.
'©$t5f£6¥ having now refblved i8 winter onPtJm-
InaE, raid irprffis veffel. Orf f$fe itf m SeptiemoSl*
Korovlri, was at his own defire diff^ftcmld $ftri
Itfnuflfing pgffty in two Midars. On h?s return,
ftf Maf ^65, thiiy received tne fiift rm^ffigence
of me'arrival of S6lov%f's verol, whrch lay be-
jfore Unalafhka*. None of me iflanders appeared near die harbour* during -^irtrer, and
rffere were hone probably at rtMt tffme upori
tltnMft; for Glottof made excursions on all
fides, went once round the ifland, and fotmWsrnf
the habitations empty. He likewife examined
the country, and caufed a ftrict fearch to be made
after the remains of the plundered veffel.
According to GlottoPs account, Umnak is
about three hundred verfts in circumference.
It contains feveral rivulets, which take their rife
from lakes, and fall into the fea after a very
fhort courfe.    No trees were obferved on the
Chapter 11.
ifland, 200
ifland, and the vegetables were the fame as thofe
of Kamtchatka.
The following fummer fmall parties of the inhabitants were feen; but they fled upon the approach of the Ruffians. Some of them were at
laft perfuaded to hold a friendly intercourfe,
and pay tribute ; by which means the Ruffians
recovered part of the arms, anchors, and ironwork of the plundered veffel. They continued
to trade with the natives during the fummer of
.1765, for the fkins of foxes and fea-otters.
In the winter hunting parties were fent out
in Umnak as well as to Unalafhka; and in
July 1766, Glottof, without meeting with more
difficulties, began his voyage homewards. We
fhall here conclude with a copy of his journal
kept on board; from which, inferences with regard to the fituation of the iflands may be
Journal of Glottof, on board the Andrean
and Natalia.
Oct. 1. Sailed from Kamtchatka Bay.
S. Wind Southerly, steered between E. and
S. E. three hours. |||
3. Wind S. E. worked at N. E. course sixteen hours.
4. From midnight sailed East with a fair
wind, eighteen hours.
Oct. FROM   I741   TO   I778.
jOct.  5. At sjx o'clock A. M. discovered Beerinfffs
Island distant about eighteen versts.
6\ At one o'clock came to anchor on the
South East point of Copper Island.
7. At eight A. M. sailed to the South side of
the Island, anchored there at ten o'clock.
—2 3nI
fug. 1.
yuly 26. Sailed from Copper Island at five P. M.
27. Sailed with a fair S. S. W. wind, seventeen
Made little way.
Drove—wind E. N. E.
Ditto m
2. At eleven A. M. wind N. E. steered E.
3. Wind W. S. W. sailed eight knots an
hour, two hundred and fifty versts.
4. Wind South—sailed one hundred and
fifty versts.
5. Wind ditto—sailed one hundred and
twenty-six versts.
6. Wind ditto, three knots, forty-five versts.
7. Calm.
8. During the night gentle S. E. wind, steered
N. E. at two and a half l$*ipts.
9. Forenoon calm. At two o'clock, P. M.
gentle N. E. wind, steered between E.
N. E. and S. E. at the rate of three
s-.f: .
m* 204
May 25. Wind N. W.  and made   but little  way]
W.S.W.       pjr,   "    ■,-.-V:
.26. Wind W. ship drove towards S. E.
27. Wind W. S. W. ship drove E. S. E. The
same day the wind came round to the S*
when steered again towards Kadyak.
28. Wind E. S. E. fell in with the island
Alaska or Alaksu.
29. Wind S. W. steered N. W.
30. Wind W. N. W. the ship drove under
the foresail.
31. Wind W. drove to the Southward.
June 1. Wind W. S. W. landed on the Island Sak- i
tunak, for a supply of water.
2. Wind S. E. steered S. W, along the island!
at three knots.
3. Wind N. E. steered W. S. W. at the rate!
of three to four knots, sailing in these
twenty-four hours one hundred versts.
4. Calm.
5. At eight o'clock A.M. a small breeze S.E, j
6. Wind E. afterwards calm. Towards evening the Wind S. E. steered S. W. at
three knots, anc( unexpectedly discovered land ahead, which kept clear of
with difficulty.
From the 7th to the 10th at anchor off a
small cliff.
10. A hard gale at S. the ship drove foul of
the anchor, stood out to sea steering E.
11. Anchored again at a small distance from