10th - 11th May 1770
[Off Cape Hawke, New South Wales]
10th. In the P.M., had the wind at North-East by North, with which we stood in Shore until near 4 o'Clock, when we Tack'd in 23 fathoms Water, being about a Mile from the land, and as much to the Southward of Cape 3 Points. In the night the wind veer'd to North-West and West, and in the morning to South-West. Having the advantage of a light Moon, we made the best of our way along shore to the Northward. At Noon we were by observation in the Latitude of 32 degrees 53 minutes South, and Longitude 208 degrees 0 minutes West, and about 2 Leagues from the land, which extended from North 41 degrees East to South 41 degrees West. A small round rock or Island,* (* Nobby Head, at the entrance of Newcastle Harbour, formed by the Hunter River. Newcastle is the great coal port of New South Wales. It has a population of 20,000, and exports 1,500,000 tons of coal in the year.) laying close under the land, bore South 82 degrees West, distance 3 or 4 Leagues. At sunrise in the Morning found the Variation to be 8 degrees East. In the Latitude of 33 degrees 2 minutes South, a little way inland, is a remarkable hill, that is shaped like the Crown of a Hatt, which we past about 9 o'Clock in the forenoon.
11th. Winds Southerly in the day, and in the night Westerly; a Gentle breeze and Clear weather. At 4 P.M. past, at the distance of one Mile, a low rocky point which I named Point Stephens (Latitude 32 degrees 45 minutes); on the North side of this point is an inlet which I called Port Stephens* (* Called after Mr. Stephens, one of the Secretaries to the Admiralty. It is a large and fine harbour.) (Latitude 32 degrees 40 minutes; Longitude 207 degrees 51 minutes), that appear'd to me from the Masthead to be shelter'd from all Winds. At the Entrance lay 3 Small Islands, 2 of which are of a Tolerable height, and on the Main, near the shore, are some high round hills that make at a distance like Islands. In passing this bay at the distance of 2 or 3 miles from the Shore our soundings were from 33 to 27 fathoms; from which I conjectured that there must be a sufficient depth of Water for Shipping in the bay. We saw several smokes a little way in the Country upon the flat land; by this I did suppose that there were Lagoons which afforded subsistance for the Natives, such as shell-fish, etc., for we as yet know nothing else they have to live upon. At 1/2 past 5, the Northermost land in sight bore North 36 degrees East, and Point Stephens South-West, distant 4 Leagues, at which time we took in our Steerings,* (* Studding sails.) and run under an Easey sail all night until 4 A.M., when we made all sail; our soundings in the night were from 48 to 62 fathoms, at the distance of between 3 and 4 Leagues from the land. At 8 we were abreast of a high point of Land, which made in 2 Hillocks; this point I called Cape Hawke* (* After Admiral Sir Edward Hawke, First Lord of the Admiralty.) (Latitude 32 degrees 14 minutes South, Longitude 207 degrees 30 minutes West). It bore from us at this time West distant 8 Miles, and the same time the Northermost land in sight bore North 6 degrees East, and appear'd high and like an Island. At Noon this land bore North 8 degrees East, the Northermost land in sight North 13 degrees East, and Cape Hawke South 37 degrees West. Latitude in per Observation 32 degrees 2 minutes South, which was 12 Miles to the Southward of that given by the Log, which I do suppose to be owing to a Current setting that way. Course and distance sail'd since Yesterday at Noon was first North-East by East, 27 Miles, then North 10 degrees East, 37 Miles; Longitude in 207 degrees 20 minutes West; Variation per morning Amplitude and Azimuth 9 degrees 10 minutes East.
Posted by Arborfield at 08:47