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10 August, 1768

 

On 10 August, 1768, the Admiralty Secretary wrote to the Victualling Board, “A proper quantity of Saloup is to be put on board the Endeavour Bark, that experiment may be made of the good effects of it”.

Endeavour sailed through the night several miles off the coast of Beachy Head.  James Cook wrote in his journal, “At 4am Sounded 35 fathoms, small brown stones”.
Soundings can be taken by dropping a piece of heavy lead over the side on the end of a long piece of rope.  The rope is knotted at intervals of a fathom, so that the distance to the sea-bed can be calculated.  If the bottom of the lead weight is hollowed out and filled with a soft wax, then when the lead hits the bottom, bits of the sea bed stick to the wax, giving useful information about what is down there.

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