23rd January 1769

Tierra del Fuego
Winds variable from South-East round by the South-West to North-West. First part, a fresh breeze and Squally, the remainder moderate breezes and sometimes Calm and clear weather, which is more than we have had for several days past. At 4 a.m. saw the Land in the South-West Quarter, and a small Island bearing West; from this Time until 9 it was Calm, at which time the Ship drove very fast to the North-East by North. At 9 Sprung up a light breeze at North, loos'd all the Reefs out, and set the Steering sails. The Cape of good Success bore North-East by North; Staten land seen from the Deck bearing North-East; the Sugar Loaf on Terra Del Fuego North-North-East, and is the same Hill as is seen from the North-East side of the Land; it appears to stand but a little way in Land from the Shore; and the Mainland and Islands on the Coast extending from the Cape of good Success to the South by West. The Country Mountainous, of an indifferent height; the Tops were covered with Snow, which had lately fell, as it did not lay long. There appeared to be several Bays and inlets and Islands laying along the Coast; the 3rd view in the Chart exhibits the appearance of this Coast where g is new Island, c the Sugar Loaf, and h the Cape of good Success. At noon the West End of New Island bore North-West by West, 5 leagues. Latitude observed 55 degrees 25 minutes South, this Island I named New Island because it is not laid down in any Chart.

Joseph Banks Journal
At day break this morn there was land almost all round us, which we judged to be Terra del Fuego not far from the streights and attributed the little way we had made to the streng[t]h of the current setting us to the Eastward. Our old Freind the Sugar Loaf was now in sight who seemd to have followd us, for he was certainly much nearer to us now than he was when we saw him last on the other side of the streights.

Sydney Parkinson’s Journal
The land on both sides, particularly Staten-land, affords a most dismal prospect, being made up chiefly of barren rocks and tremendous precipices, covered with snow, and uninhabited, forming one of those natural views which human nature can scarce behold without shuddering. — How amazingly diversified are the works of the Deity within the narrow limits of this globe we inhabit, which, compared with the vast aggregate of systems that compose the universe, appears but a dark speck in the creation! A curiosity, perhaps, equal to Solomon's, though accompanied with less wisdom than was possessed by the Royal Philosopher, induced some of us to quit our native land, to investigate the heavenly bodies minutely in distant regions, as well as to trace the signatures of the Supreme Power and Intelligence throughout several species of animals, and different genera of plants in the vegetable system, "from the cedar that is in Lebanon, even unto the hyssop that springeth out of the wall:" and the more we investigate, the more we ought to admire the power, wisdom, and goodness, of the Great Superintendant of the universe; which attributes are amply displayed throughout all his works; the smallest object, seen through the microscope, declares its origin to be divine, as well as those larger ones which the unassisted eye is capable of contemplating: but to proceed.

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