On 1 April, 1772, Resolution and Adventure were in the naval dockyards at Deptford and Woolwich, respectively, being made ready for sea.
The alterations to Resolution to accommodate Joseph Banks and his entourage had been completed in February. We can get an idea of the alterations made from a letter written by John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich, First Lord of the Admiralty, to Banks on 20 June.
the great Cabbin was heightened, to 6 feet 6 inches and lengthened to 22 feet, which is the same height with the principal cabbin of many of our ships of 74 guns and six foot longer. However that you might not be crouded by the Captain in this small Cabbin, he was to have one erected for him above; and that every one of your suite might have ample accommodation a new deck was to be laid over the main deck that they might have seperate cabbins under it.
On 3 April, Commander James Cook in Resolution wrote to the Navy Board in response to a letter from them on 31 March, in which he had been asked if he was willing to take Mr James Maxwell, midshipman. He was currently in Rose, a sixth rate ship being repaired and refitted at Sheerness. Cook agreed to the move, and Maxwell joined on 28 April as an Able Bodied (AB) seaman.
Also that day, Commander Tobias Furneaux in Adventure wrote in his journal, “Came aboard a pilot and took charge of the Ship, cast off lashings and came to sail... Came too with our best bower [anchor] in Galleons Reach... Moor’d”. Three days later, “Employ’d stowing the Booms”, poles that are used to extend sails. Two days later “Got onboard our Guns (viz) 10 four Pounders and 8 Swivels; Shot, small Arms & Gunners Stores”.
On 9 April, Cook wrote to the Navy Board
His Majestys Sloop Resolution under my command is so very full of Provisions & Stores that it will be impossible for me to allow any one Man, or set of Men, a single Chest to keep the few necessary Cloathing &ca they may have; I pray you will be pleased to order for this purpose, canvas bags to be made for each man, about a yard in length, and the Resolution to be supply’d therewith.
This request was agreed. Also that day, Cook wrote in his journal, “we saild from Deptford and the same evening stop’d a long side the sheer hulk at Woolwich where we were detain’d by contrary Winds untill the 22nd”. Cook did not write a detailed journal as he had done in Endeavour; rather, he wrote a story of the voyage, possibly with its publication in mind. For this day, Joseph Gilbert, the ship’s Master, wrote, “cast off from the sheer hulk [at Deptford] and sailed down the River, at 5 PM made fast to the sheer hulk at Woolwich”. According to John Davall Burr, a Master’s mate, she was “the Guernsey”, the same 4th rate ship that Adventure had been lashed to in February.
The following day, Cook wrote to the Admiralty Secretary, Philip Stephens,
Agreeable to their Lordships order, I have purchased all the Articles intended to be sent out in the Resolution and Adventure (and which are now on board) amounting to Three hundred and Nine pounds One Shilling and Four pence, as will appear by the inclosed papers, which I pray you will be pleased to lay before their Lord Ships and move them to order me to be repaid.
Cook wrote again to the Admiralty Secretary three days later requesting payment of the £309 1s 4d that he was owed. The instruction to pay him was sent to the Navy Board.
On 1 April, Joseph Banks was invoiced by Abraham Staghold for “24 harpoons” and “21 Gunns”. Two days later, he was invoiced by Jos. Reed for “a Coil of Small Whale-Line 300 fath[om], 5 Lines 100 fath, 4 lines 50 fath, 500 small perch - lines”.
On 10 April, Banks was invoiced by Thomas Orpin Engraver, at his Shop opposite Northumberland Court, in the Strand, London, for “Engraving - 40 Brasses with Arms & Jos”. The brasses were the patus that Banks had made for him in March by Eleanor Gyles, Brass Founder, No. 9, Shoe Lane, Fleet Street.
On 17 April, Banks was invoiced by P&J Dollond, Opticians to His Majesty and To His Royal Highness the Duke of Gloucester, N.59 the North Side of St Pauls Church Yard, for “a 4 foot achro[matic] Telescope with large aperture, an edged barred sextant 15 In Radius with the new method of adjusting the back observation and other improvements, Two 2 foot achromatic telescopes, a Magick Lantern”.
On 18 April, Banks was invoiced by Christopher Fuhrlohg for “A travelling kist [chest] with drawers and petitions[partitions]”, and by John Cobb for “a mahogy Solid Chest of Drawers wth a Secratary Drawer upon top with Strong lifting hands, 12 Mahogy folding Chairs the seats covd wth blk Leather & brass Nail, 4 Armd Chairs & 2 Stools to form a Couch”. He was also charged “For Mens Time Going on board to Take Dimentions for Carpetts & other Jobbs & Men & Womens Time laying Down of the Carpett fixg up the Curtains & Sundry other Jobbs”.
Earlier in the year, Banks had ordered a supply of medals struck to commemorate the voyage from “Messrs Boulton and Fothergill of Birmingham”. They are nowadays referred to by the name Resolution and Adventure medals. Somehow, Banks managed to get the Admiralty to pay for them. On 16 April, the Admiralty wrote to the Navy Board to pay Boulton and Fothergill “£50 for making a Die and striking off Two thousand Medals which are to be put on board the said Sloops to be distributed to the Natives of such new discovered Countries as they may touch at”. Also ordered from Birmingham were “several Iron Utensils, Shott, Jacketts, & Trowsers, Ribbands, Beads, & other Articles... in order to exchange for Refreshments with the Natives... or to distribute to them in Presents, towards obtaining their Friendship, & winning them over to our Interest”.
On 9 April, the Stamford Mercury reported
the mathematical, astronomical, and other instruments and utensils belonging to Mr. Banks, were conveyed from his house in New Burlington-street, and shipped on board the vessel in which that Gentleman is shortly to sail to the South Seas.
On 11 April, the Middlesex Journal reported
Orders have been given to Dr. Solander and Mr. Banks, to endeavour to penetrate as far as 60 degrees South, to see what land can be discovered towards the South Pole.
On 21 April, the Leeds Intelligencer told its readers
Lord Sandwich, &ca. with many Foreign Ambassadors, and persons of distinction, are expected at Woolwich tomorrow, to go on board the Resolution now lying there, and to take a final leave of Mr. Banks, Dr. Solander, and Capt. Cook, &c., before their departure on their intended voyage to the South Sea.
On 12 April, Gilbert wrote, “Mustered by the Clerk of the Cheque”. He was a member of the dockyard responsible for pay and personnel.
On 14 April, Robert Palliser Cooper, First Lieutenant in Resolution, wrote, “Sent Cutter up to Deptford for John Marra who was Confin’d on board the Grenville Brig for Security”. Marra had sailed in Endeavour, and had joined Resolution as Gunner’s mate on 17 December, 1771. Cooper was a relation of Hugh Palliser, the Comptroller of the Navy.
On 16 April, Cooper wrote, “Read the Articles of War & Abstract of the late Act of Parliament to the Ship’s Company & Punish’d Patrk Wheeland Qr Master one Dozen [lashes] for Disobedience to orders”. According to Burr, the man was Patrick Wheeling. The Quartermaster’s surname is sometimes also spelt Whelan.
On 22 April, Cooper wrote, “cast off from the Hulk [at Woolwich] & Came to Sail... At 6 came to an Anchor with the Best Bower at Longreach... Punish’d John Marra Gunners Mate one dozen [lashes] for Mutiny & Desertion”. According to Burr, they were “in Long Reach, abreast of Poor Fleet”, i.e. Purfleet.
On 22 April, Furneaux wrote, “Passed by us the Resolution, saluted her with three chears”.
On the 22nd Cook wrote to the Admiralty Secretary
Please to acquaint my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty with the arrival of His Majestys Sloop Resolution under my command at Long Reach, in order to take in her Guns and other Ordnance Stores, which could not be done in Gailions Reach, there not being there a sufficient depth of Water for the Sloop to lay with safety.
On 23 April, the Admiralty Secretary wrote to Cook and to Furneaux ordering the masters to include with their books of navigation “the Nautical Almanac or Astronomical Ephemeris for the Present Year... and for every succeeding Year... as soon as they shall be Published & you are carefully to see that the same be used, upon all Proper occasions & that the Longitude, deduced from the Lunar Observations, be inserted in the Log Book”.
The next day, Furneaux, “6 weigh’d and came to sail, at 8 Anchor’d in Longreach with the small bower [anchor]... found here His Majesty’s Sloop Resolution”. According to Gilbert, “Receivd on board our Guns & gunner stores, came down the river & anchor’d here His Majs Sloop Adventure”.
On 26 April, Gilbert wrote, “the Capt thinking the ship too deep ordered some Iron ballast to be got out of the hold to be returned”, i.e. to lighten the ship.
On 29 April, Burr wrote, “Recd our Marines on Board, Viz: 1 Lieut, 1 Sergt, 2 Corporals, one Drum, & 15 private Men”. John Edgcumbe was Second Lieutenant. He had previously sailed in Endeavour. Furneaux wrote, “Received onboard our Complt [complement] of Marines”. They were a Serjeant, a Corporal, a Drummer and nine Privates.
On 2 May, the Admiralty Secretary wrote to the Victualling Board about the inspissated juice of malt, prepared in accordance with the instructions the Admiralty had sent on 16 January. Three-fifths was to be sent to Resolution and two-fifths to Adventure. Their commanders were to be sent instructions for “making proper experiments of its efficacy”.
On 2 May, the Kentish Gazette reported
This day the Resolution, Capt. Cooke, and the Adventure, were reviewed at Long-Reach by the Earl of Sandwich and several other persons of distinction, previous to their voyage round the world with Dr. Solander and Mr. Banks. After which a grand entertainment was given to the nobility and gentry who attended.
According to Cooper, “Came on board the Right Honble the Earl of Sandwich, the French Ambassadore [Adrien-Louis de Bonnières, Comte de Guines] & other Company to Dine. Saluted them at their Coming & going away with 17 Guns & 3 Cheers”. Furneaux wrote, “Saluted Lord Sandwich, who did us the honor of a visit”. Cook noted that “scarce a day past on which she was not crowded with Strangers who came on board for no other purpose but to see the Ship in which Mr Banks was to sail round the world”.
On 4 May, the Admiralty ordered both Resolution and Adventure to sail downstream to The Downs. However, neither ship left that day. From a letter to Cook we learn that he was not in Resolution as he “wishes to be absent a few days longer”. We do not know when he left the ship, or where he went.
On 5 May, the Admiralty ordered Cook “To give Francis Mason, a gardener sent out by the king, a passage to Cape of Good Hope”. Banks, who had visited the Cape in Endeavour, had recommended to King George III that one of the plantsmen at Kew Gardens be sent to the Cape to collect living plant specimens, and to prepare them for export back to England. Francis Masson joined the ship on 29 May.
On 7 May, Cooper wrote, “At 1 AM the Launch retd from Town. Mr Wm Sandford Midsn fell over board out of her at Woolwich & was Drown’d”. William Sandford had joined on 10 February.
On 7 May, we discover from a letter Cook wrote to the Victualling Office that Resolution and Adventure were no longer to “touch at Portsmouth as was once intended, but are to proceed from the Downs immediately to Plymouth”. The Navy Board ordered ballast for the ships to be supplied at Plymouth.
Two days later, the Admiralty ordered the Navy Board to pay six months’ wages in advance to the officers and men of Resolution and Adventure, so that “they could make provision for their families”.
On 8 May, Furneaux “at 6 AM weigh’d and came to Sail, at 9 Anchor’d with the Best Bower... at Gravesend... Commenced Sea Victualling”. The next day Adventure sailed to the Nore, and the following day “Anchor’d in the Downs... Found here the Glory”, a fifth rate ship.
On this day, 10 May, Resolution sailed downstream to Fiddlers Reach. The next day she reached Gravesend, and arrived three days later at the Nore. Cook summarised in his journal what took place
in this short passage she was found so crank that it was thought unsafe to proceed any further with her. This being represented to me with all its circumstances by Mr Cooper the first Lieutenant. I laid the same before the Admiralty and seeing that it was absolutely necessary that something should be done to remove the evil complain’d of I proposed to cut down her poop, shorten her masts and to change her guns from six to four pounders.
According to William Falconer’s “Marine Dictionary” of 1780, the term crank means that a ship “is rendered incapable of carrying sail without being exposed to the danger of oversetting”.
On 15 May, the Navy Board wrote to the Admiralty saying that the trouble must be attributed to the accommodation for passengers and the quantity of heavy stowage. It was proposed that she should be ordered to Sheerness, for alterations to be made in her structure, including changing the guns from 6 pounders to 4 pounders. The Admiralty agreed, and gave the necessary orders.
Charles Clerke, who had sailed in Endeavour, was Second Lieutenant in Resolution. He wrote to Banks on 15 May.
We weigh’d anchor at Graves-End this morning about 10 O’clock, with a fine Breeze from the Eastward, the wind from that quarter, laid us under the necessity of working down the Reaches which work, I’m sorry to tell you, we found the Resolution very unequal to; for whilst several light Colliers were working down with their whole Topsails, Staysails &c. one small Brig in particular with her Top Gallant Sails; these Light Vessels so upright, that a Marble wou’d hardly rowl from Windward to Leeward, the Resolution I give you my honour, under her reeft Topsails, Jibb & Main Top Mast Staysail, heel’d within three Streaks of her Gun Ports. She is so very bad, that the Pilot declares, he will not run the risk of his Character so far, as to take charge of her, farther than the Nore without a fair Wind, that he cannot with safety to himself attempt working her to the Downs... I do think her by far the most unsafe Ship, I ever saw or heard of.
Resolution’s pilot, William Appleby, was ordered to report to the Navy Office. On 19 May
He acquainted the Board that he took charge of her at Deptford and Piloted her to the Warp below Sheerness. That she is very crank owing to her being over built with the additional Works raised on her. That he is well acquainted with these kind of Ships having served his time in them, and been Mate and Master of several of them, and that they are of a built for burthen and stowage. That he is of opinion if the additions were taken away, she will be as good as any Ship of that kind. That he never heard of her being esteemed Crank when a Merchant Ship or could say any thing to that effect having never seen or known the Ship before.
On 20 May, the Morning Chronicle reported
Mr. Banks and Dr. Solander are now expecting to sail every day. They have been waiting these three weeks and upwards for a fair wind, which has never offered in that time.
On 21 May, the London Evening Post reported
The ship that Messrs Banks and Solander were going round the world in, has lately been repaired and raised eight or nine feet in Deptford-yard, but in going down the river she was found to be so much over-built, that she could not carry her top-sails, while many ships in company carried top-gallant sails; so they were obliged to run her into Sheerness, where she must be again cut down, or she cannot proceed. The pilot has been examined before the Navy Board, and yesterday was re-examined before the House of Commons.
According to Cook, on 20 May, he “set out for Sheerness and arrived thier the same evening and found everything in great forwardness, the Poop and Spar deck was already taken away”. The next day he reported to the Admiralty Secretary that “the intended alterations go on with great alertness”.
On 24 May, Cook wrote, “Mr Banks and Dr Solander came down to take a view of the Sloop as she was now altered, and return’d to town again the same eveng and soon after Mr Banks declared his resolution not to go the Voyage, aledging that the Sloop was neither roomy nor convenient enough for his purpose, nor noways proper for the Voyage... which had cost him about five Thousand pounds”.
A meeting of the Board of Longitude had been held on 15 May. Members present included Lord Sandwich (1st Lord of the Admiralty), Nevil Maskelyne (Astronomer Royal), and Philip Stephens (Secretary to the Admiralty).
The Earl of Sandwich having proposed to the consideration of the Board whether it may not be proper to give some directions with respect to the safe custody of the Watch Machines which are going out under the care of Messrs [William] Wales & [William] Bayly in the Resolution & Adventure Sloops, as well to prevent any improper management or ill treatment of the sd Watch Machines as to obviate any suspicions thereof hereafter; And the Board entirely concurring in opinion with his Lordship that such directions are extremely proper & necessary”, it was resolved, “That such Boxes as Messrs [Larcum] Kendal and [John] Arnold shall judge most proper for the reception of their respective Watch Machines be immediately provided;
That three good Locks, of different wards, be also provided & affixed to each Box;
That the Key of one of the Locks of each Box be held by the Commander of the Sloop wherein such Box may be; that the Key of another of the said Locks be kept by the 1st Lieutenant of the said Sloop or Officer next in command to him; And that the Key of the third Lock be kept by such one of the abovementd Observers (Messrs Wales & Bayly) as shall be on board: Which three persons are daily to be present at the winding up of the said Watch Machines & comparing them with each other whilst on board & with the Astronomical Clock whilst on shore; and to see that the respective times shewn at such comparisons be properly inserted, & attested under their hands, in the General Observation Book which the sd Observers are ordered to Keep. But, if it shall happen that the Commanders, Officers or Observers or either of them, cannot at any time through indisposition or absence upon other necessary duties, conveniently attend, their key or keys are, in such case, to be delivered to such other Officer or Officers of the Sloops as the Commdrs can best trust therewith, in order that such other Officer or Officers may attend at the winding up & comparing &ca of the abovementd Watch Machines during such indisposition or Absence.
On 26 May, Johann Reinhold Forster wrote in his journal
Mr Irwin [Charles Irving, surgeon and inventor, who was working with Cook on problems of seawater distillation], who had not seen me ever since I left London in the year 1767, came late in the Evening & in a very mysterious manner told me, that Mr Banks did not go in the Resolution to the South Seas, & asked whether I would go; I told [him] if a proper provision were made for me & my Family, I would not hesitate one moment but my Son George must in that case go with me, being both as a Naturalist & a tolerable Draughtsman well qualified for to assist me. Mr Irwin seemed to like it, desired me to keep upon this
application the strictest secrecy, & told that he had it in his power to recommend me in such a manner that I would be certainly employed in the Expedition, & as he was to breakfast with Mr Stephens [the Admiralty Secretary] he would speak to him about it”.
Meanwhile, during the afternoon of 13 May, Furneaux in Adventure had “at 6 weigh’d and came to sail”. The following morning, she passed Beachy Head, and the next day the Isle of Wight. On 19 May, the ship sailed into Plymouth Sound, and “Saluted Rear Admiral Spry with 13 Guns”. Richard Spry was the port Admiral at Plymouth. Furneaux “Found riding here His Majesty’s Ship the Torbay”, a guard-ship in which he had been second lieutenant before being promoted to Adventure. On 22 May, “Came aboard a Pilot and carried the Sloop up to Barn Pool, and here we hook in the moorings”.
On 29 May, Furneaux “fired 13 Guns being the Anniversary of King Charles’s restoration”. King Charles II had entered London on 29 May, 1660, on his return from exile.
On 1 June, the Daily Advertiser reported news from Plymouth, dated 26 May.
Arrived his Majesty’s Ship Panther, Com. Shuldham, from Portsmouth for Newfoundland, and the Savage Sloop of War, from Portsmouth, with Money to pay the Artificers of the Dock-Yard. The Adventure, one of the Ships going to the South Seas with Dr. Solander and Mr. Banks, is arrived here, and sailed into Hamoaze, in order to have some necessary Repairs done before she proceeds on the Voyage.
On 4 June, Furneaux “fir’d 21 Guns, it being the Anniversary of His Majesty’s Birth”. King George III was born on 4 June, 1738.
On 28 May, the Admiralty Secretary wrote to the Navy Board that Banks had this day informed their Lordships that he did not intend to proceed in Resolution. Therefore, accommodation was to be prepared only for the captain, officers, and for the astronomer who was going at the request of the Board of Longitude.
According to Cook’s journal
On the 30th Mr Palliser the Comptroller of the Navy paid us a Visit in order to inspect into the several alterations that had been & were still to make, for this gentleman had taken upon him in spite of all that had been alledged against her to make her compleatly fit not only for the sea but for the service she was intended for, indeed if his advice had not been over ruled at first a great deal of unnecessary trouble and expence would have been saved not only to the Crown but to Mr Banks and every other person concerned.
On 1 June, Cook wrote to the Navy Board,
Mr Hunt, Master Builder of this Yard, being desireous that tryal may be made, in the Resolution, of the composition he has invented to prevent Worms from eating into Ships Bottoms &ca I pray you will be pleased to order two of her Boats bottoms to be paid therewith to be supply’d with two or three hundred weight for such other tryals as may offer in the Course of the Voyage.
The Navy Board agreed to the request.
The same day, Cooper recorded, “Employ’d getting the Baggage &ca belonging to Mr Banks, Dr Solander &ca into a Barge, they having declin’d the Voyage”.
On 2 June, Cook wrote to Banks from Sheerness.
I receiv’d your letter by one of your People acquainting me that you had order’d every thing belonging to you to be removed out of the Ship and desireing my assistance therein. I hope Sir you will find this done to your satisfaction, and with that care the present hurry and confused state of the Ship required some few articles which were for the Mess I have kept, for which together with the Money I have remaining in my hands I shall account with you for when I come to Town.
Taught by experience not to trust to the knowledge of Servants the whole of every necessary article that wanting in such a voyage, I had indipendent of what I purchased for the mess, layd in a stock of mess articles which will be now quite sufficient for me, and is the reason why I have not kept more of yours.
The Cook & two French Horn men are at liberty to go when ever they please.
If it should not be convenient to send down for what may be still remaining in the Ship of yours they shall be sent you...
I Pray my best respects to the Dr [Solander] & since I am not to have your Company in the Resolution I most sin[c]erely wish you success in all your exploring undertakens”.
On 7 June, Cook wrote to the Admiralty Secretary
All the alteration that have been made in His Majestys Sloop Resolution under my command, are now in a fair way of being finished in a few Days, painting excepted, I pray you will be pleased to move my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to grant me a Weeks leave of absence from the Sloop in order to come to town to settle some private affairs of my own before I take my final departure.
The following day, the Admiralty Secretary wrote to Captain Suckling, Senior Officer, Chatham, granting Cook’s leave.
On 2 June, Reinhold Forster was told by the lawyer and naturalist Daines Barrington that Lord Sandwich “seemed pleased with... my character”.
Three days later, Forster wrote in his journal
Ld Sandwich suspecting that Mr Banks would endeavour to obtain a new Ship, he went to His Majesty, & laid the plan of sending me on the Expedition, with the Character given me by Mr Barrington before the King, who was graciously pleased to approve of my going on the Expedition.
The next day, Forster recorded “The chief members of the Council of ye Royal Society signed a Certificate in my favour, recommending me as a proper person for going on the Expedition”.
On 8 June, Sandwich wrote to Lord North, the Prime Minister.
I hope (if you have no objection of your own) that you will encourage Mr. Foster [Forster] who from all hands is admitted to be one of the fittest persons in Europe for such an undertaking; he is ready to go at a moment’s warning, is thoroughly satisfied of the safety of the ship and with her present accomodation, and having his son with him, who is a very able draughtsman and designer, will fully supply the chasm occasioned by Mr. Banks’ having withdrawn himself from the voyage.
On 10 June, Cooper wrote, “Came to the Nore the Augusta Yacht. Visited us the Right Honble the Earl of Sandwich &ca. Saluted him with 3 Cheers”. According to Cook
His Lordship inspected into and was pleased to approve of all alterations that had been made... Every thing being now nearly upon the point of finishing and having some business to settle in London I set out for that place in the Eveng and upon my arrival learnt that Mr John Reinhold Forster and his son Mr George Forster were to imbark with me, gentlemen skill’d in Natural history and Botany, but more especially the former.
On 11 June, James Scott a marine in Resolution, was transferred to Adventure as Second Lieutenant of marines. As the ships were in different places, the Admiralty Secretary wrote to Suckling at Chatham to discharge the marine, and wrote to Spry at Plymouth to embark Scott, and then discharge another marine. Scott was discharged from Resolution on 12 June, and mustered in Adventure on 7 July, whereupon marine John Hall was discharged.
On 13 June, Forster “met Capt Cook that day at Mr Banks’s & went with him to the Admiralty, where a board of longitude was to be held, in order to see there Mr Hornsby; & then went with Capt Cook home, to have him to dinner”. Thomas Hornsby was Professor of Astronomy at Oxford. Also present at the meeting of the Board of Longitude were Nevil Maskelyne, Philip Stephens and four others.
The Astronomer Royal laid before the Board the following Bills, vizt
Messrs Dollonds for Mathematical Instruments supplied for the use of Messrs Wales and Bayly £169 10s 0d;
Mr Nairne for Optical & Mathematical Do[ditto] supplied to Do £119 3s 6d; Mr Burton for Mathematical do supplied Do £76 13s 0d;
Mr Adams for do supplied Do £27 9s 0d
Thomas Shrimpton, Ironmonger, for Iron work to support the Astronomical Clocks for the use of Do £12 0s 0d;
Richard Ashworth for wood work to support do & for Trucks, wheels &ca for the Use of Do £6 19s 9d...
A Memorial from Mr Owen Straton was read proposing a Method of finding out the Longitude by means of an Instrument of his invention, And the said Mr Straton, who was attending, being called in & examined and it appearing that the Instrument proposed is a Sun Dial, he was told it could not be of any service & then withdrew...
Mr Kendall attended & gave in a paper showing the particulars wherein the Watch Machine last made by him for the use of the Board differs from Mr [John] Harrison’s, which paper was read.
On 21 June, Furneaux recorded, “came in and Anchor’d in the Sound His Majesty’s Ships the Royal Oak, Terrible, Centaur, and Worcester. Lord Sandwich in the Augusta Yacht went up the Harbour. Salut’d him with 13 Guns & three Cheers, as did all the fleet which he returned with 7”.
On 21 June, Cooper wrote, “Punish’d Philp Brotherson Drumr one Dozen [lashes] for Theft”. Cook “tooke leave of my Family and set out, in company with Mr Wales the Astronomer for Sheerness”.
On 22 June, Cooper wrote, “sailed out of the Harbour to the Nore & then work’d to Windward to try the Ship with the Officers of the Yard on board. Found her to behave exceedingly well”. According to Cook, Resolution’s “draught of Water at this time was... a foot lighter than when she first went into Sheerness, one great point gain’d by cutting her down”.
On 25 June, Cook wrote, “we run over the Flatts and Anchored in Margate road and the next day got into the Downs where we lay but one night and than sail’d for Plymouth Sound”. James Burney, a midshipman in Resolution, wrote in his journal, “Anchord this afternoon in the Downs, where we staid just long enough to provide ourselves with a little grogg & then Weighd Anchor,—In our passage to Plymouth we tried Mr Irwins Machine for making Salt Water fresh & found we could get near 15 Quarts per Hour”.
On 20 June, Forster in London wrote, “All my baggage was sent on board the Resolution by the Sheerness paquet”. Six days later, “Having compleated my Equipment, I took leave of my Family & Friends & took a post-chaise for Plymouth, The Resolution having left Sheerness ye 22d”.
Forster described his journey from London to Plymouth.
We passed through Brenton [Brentford] a dirty town, came to Hounslow, all a fine & cultivated country, then passed Hounslow-heath, filled with furze & gallows, both a disgrace to the Country. Dined at Stainsbridge [Staines]: passed over the uncultivated hills on Bagshot common, which furnish ye London Markets with the finest mutton, but in my opinion would be better imployed in plantations chiefly of oak. The same country continues to Murrelgreen, whence we went to Basingstock an ancient town; we passed Sutton & Stockbridge, & having crossed the bleak & dreary heath on the plains of Salisbury, we reached that ancient city: the spire is remarkable on account of its height & pointed figure & has walls round the city. Our road lay still on the same barren heath. The bottom of all the country is chalk.
On 27 June, Forster continued “We reached Barnet-down a single house & then came to Blandford”. His journey that day took him and his son via Dorchester, “a tolerable good place”, Bridport, which “has a manufacture of Sailcloth which employs a good number of hands”, Axminster, where “carpets are manufactured”, Honiton, whose “chief Staple commodity are coarse cloaths”, Exeter, “a very disagreeable dirty place, surrounded by old decaying walls, its streets are extremely narrow, go up & down hill, & make the city to a dismall place”.
The next day they passed through Chudleigh, a “small inconsiderable town”, Ashburton “another small town. The Inn we put up, was occupied by a Scotsman called Kenneth Ross who overcharged every article of our bad fare, & gave us most sorry horses & a surlly, impudent driver”. In the Afternoon they reached Plymouth
a place with narrow irregular winding streets, which have a Channel with running fresh water in their middle, & though this is a great inconvenience to carriages, which must always have one wheel in the channel, & to people walking in the Streets, who are constantly splashed by the horses; it has on the other hand the Advantage of carrying off all the filth & impurities of the town, especially at night, when the contents of a great many pots with humane excrements are emptied into it, as few people have regular little house in this town. The recession of the Sea at ebbtide leaves a great part of the interior harbour dry & causes an untolerable stench.
On 29 June, the Forsters
came to Plymouthdock a kind of new town 2 miles from Plymouth with a number of good houses & regular streets, which are improving every day. The dockyard is beyond this inclosed in high walls & none but those who are belonging to it are admitted: we wanted to wait upon Lord Sandwich, who was gone up the river 10 or 12 miles, in the Afternoon I went on board the Adventure, who lay near mount Edgecombe in Pool, but found neither Capt Furneaux, nor Lieut. Kempe on board.
William Hodges had recently returned to London from Derby, where he had been painting some scenes for the local theatre. As a result of the recommendation of Henry Temple, Second Viscount Palmerston, he was offered the position of artist in Resolution, in place of Johann Zoffany, who was to have accompanied Banks. The letter about Hodges’s appointment to Cook from the Admiralty Secretary was annotated “under the hand of”, i.e. by the direction of, three Lords of the Admiralty: Palmerston, The Honourable Augustus John Hervey, and Thomas Bradshaw.
The letter, dated 30 June, said
Whereas we have engaged Mr William Hodges, a Landskip painter to proceed in his Majesty’s Sloop under your Command on her present intended Voyage, in Order to make Drawings & paintings of such places in the Countries you may touch at in the Course of the said Voyage as may be proper to give a more perfect idea thereof than can be formed from written descriptions only; You are hereby required and directed to receive the said Mr Wm Hodges on board giving him all proper accomadation and assistance; victualling him as the Ship’s Company; and taking care that he does diligently employ himself in making Drawings or paintings of such places as you may touch at, that may be worthy of notice, in the Course of your Voyage, as also of such other Objects & things as may fall within the Compass of his Abilities.
According to Cooper,
26 June, Resolution anchored at Dungeness.
27 June the ship passed Beachy Head.
30 June she passed Bill of Portland.
Originally published in Cook's Log, page 48, volume 45, number 2 (2022).
your email address will not be published