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State Library of NSW
Collection 05: John Hunter - journal kept on board the Sirius during a voyage to New South Wales, May 1787 - March 1791
But they having Business to transact with the Owners of the Ships relative to their Ships Companys, were permitted to proceed as low as Gravesend, where the Sirius joind them the next day and proceeded immediatly to the Nore where we Anchor’d the same day, & on the 4th. of February we arrivd in the Downes; before we left the Nore the Supply Arm’d Tender joind us - We were detaind by bad Wr. and strong Westerly winds in the Downes untill the 19th. when we put to Sea in Company with the Supply & Transports, and arrivd on the Motherbank the 21st: At this Anchorage the whole of the Transports, & Store Ships were directed to Rendezvous, the latter were already arriv’d, & whilst we lay there the other Transports from the Westward join’d us - On the 9th. of May, Capt. Phillip arriv’d in Portsmouth & the next day came on board & issued the Signals & other Necessary Orders to Lieut. J. Shortland the Agent for the Transports.—
On Sunday the 13th: We saild from the Motherbank in Company with the Supply Arm’d Tender and Six Transports having on board 600 Male & 200 Female Convicts, and those Store Ships carrying provisions & various other Stores; on board the Ships carrying Convicts, were Embark’d 160 Marines with their proper Officers. Major Robert Ross was the Commandant of the Batallion & appointed Lieut. Governor of the New Settlement: a Surgeon and three assistants were also Embark’d in the Transports with Medicine & Necessary for the Voyage - The Wind being Easterly we ran out at the Needles, & were accompanied by His Majs. Ship Hyaena Capt. DeCourcy having receiv’d orders from the Admiralty to see us 100 Leagues to the Westward. We had light Breezes with fair & pleasant Weather down Channel, but had the Mortification to find that two of our Transports saild exceedingly heavy, one of which the Hyaena tow’d for two or three days - On the 15th. at Sunsett the start point bore NE½E by Compas distant 7 or 8 Leags. & at Noon on this day which finishes the Nautical & begins the Astronomical day, the Longde. by Aus. was 5°0’1 Wt. of the Meridn. of Greenwich, & by a Time Piece made by Mr. Kendal with which the Board of Longitude had