19th May 1769

Joseph Banks Journal
This morning Tubourai who had slept with me as usual was observd by my servant to have an uncommonly large nail under his Cloaths, this I was informd of and knowing that no such had been either given or dispos'd of in trade was obligd to suspect my freind of theft. I therefore went instantly to his house and chargd him with it, he immediately confessd but atempted to keep his booty by telling me that the nail was gone to Eparre. I became much in earnest and a few threats soon produc'd the stolen goods. I was more hurt at the discovery than he was, I firmly beleive he was the only Indian I trusted and in him I had placd a most unbounded confidence, this event shews more than he could bear: 7 of these nails lay in a basket in one of the tents and on examining it 5 were missing. I thought it nesscessary after this discovery to bring the offender to the tents to receive judgement which I did. Every body there was of opinion that his fault was pardonable. I confess that upon thinking over the circumstances I blam'd myself more for leaving the nails in his way than him for stealing them. It was therefore resolvd that if he brought back the other 4 he should be forgiven and his fault forgot: this I told him and he agreed readily, but instead of performing his part he and his family movd off before night taking with them all their furniture.

No comments:

Post a Comment