LETTER
FROM THE LORD BISHOP OF NOVA SCOTIA.

ADDRESSED TO
THE SECRETARY OF THE SOCIETY


"Appendix: Letter from the Lordbishop of Nova Scotia," S.P.G. Annual Report 1827 (London: S.P.G. and C.&J. Rivington, 1828), 62-104.

Halifax, 4 Jan. 1828.

REVEREND SIR,

On Thursday, the 24th of May, 1827, I embarked with my chaplain, the Rev. Edward Wix, in His Majesty's ship Orestes, Capt. Jones; and being greatly favoured by winds and weather, we anchored, after a remarkably short and pleasant passage, at St. John's, Newfoundland, on the evening of Monday the 28th.

Tuesday, the 29th, I landed with every possible mark of respect from the navy, army, and civil authorities, having been previously visited on board by Archdeacon Coster, Mr. Carrington, and the principal persons of St. John's. The Governor's carriage was waiting on the shore for me, to conduct me to Government-House, where I found a most kind and comfortable home. The Roman Catholic Bishop, Dr. Scallan, was among my earliest visitors. Sir Thomas Cochrane drove me to Virginia Cottage to dinner, about three miles from the town. It is beautifully situated; and his Excellency has fitted up the house, and arranged its grounds /63/ and water and wood, with every thing about it, in admirable taste.

The entrance to the harbour of St. John's is highly picturesque. It is a strait, so narrow that large vessels must be warped in, if the wind is not favourable, between fortified heights that rise almost perpendicularly, and nearly 600 feet above the water. Close to this entrance an ice-berg was grounded in 66 fathoms water, and with nearly 200 feet of its mass above the surface. This, however, was quite diminutive in comparison with hundreds which we afterwards saw. The town is well situated, and in the centre of very beautiful scenery; but its inhabitants, amounting to nearly 10,000, are sadly crowded together within a very narrow space. Of these, more than one-half are Roman Catholics, who have a spacious church, and afford a very liberal support to their Bishop. There is likewise, at St. John's, a Congregational Meeting-House, and a Methodist Chapel, whose congregation is numerous.

Wednesday 30th. His Excellency was so good as to devote the greater part of this day to the assisting of my information upon all points that bear in any manner upon the religious interests of the island. The Archdeacon and Clergy occupied me during the remainder of it. The whole island now contains more than 70,000 inhabitants, of whom one-half are Roman Catholics, and the larger part of the remainder are members of the Established Church. A large portion of its present occupants are of English descent; and it is only owing to the want of timely means for their instruction in the faith of their forefathers, that a number of these have united themselves with the Church of Rome.

Thursday 31st. A sufficient time having elapsed since my arrival to give notice to the parishioners, there was service at the church this day, preparatory to confirmation, and an appropriate and excellent sermon was delivered by Mr. Wix, to an attentive audience, among whom was the Governor. The church is a spacious and respectable wooden building, commodious and in good repair. It is, however, without tower or steeple. It is well attended by a large /64/ proportion of the most respectable inhabitants of the town, and by many of all classes. This day I made full inquiry respecting a District Committee of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, which once existed here, but was now nearly forgotten by all its former members.

Friday, June 1st. After a levee at Government-House, which was respectably attended, I took the oaths and my seat as a member of His Majesty's Council. His Excellency accompanied me to the central school of the Newfoundland School Society, which affords a very fair specimen of the Madras system; but the pupils are less numerous than I had expected. The average number of boys, for the last six months, not having exceeded thirty, and that of the girls being still less. Those who attend appear to be well-instructed by a respectable master and mistress. But the school is not popular, partly because there has long been an excellent free school in the town, which is now under the care of a superior master, Mr. Bacon, and partly on account of some offence which has been given to the Roman Catholics, who have a very large school under their own management.

Saturday, 2nd. The weather was bad, and I was employed in preparing for my visits to all parts of the island.

Sunday, 3d. A very large congregation was assembled at St. John's Church, which was consecrated. Every thing had been well arranged by the Clergy. In the afternoon 316 persons were confirmed. I preached upon both occasions. The deportment of those who were confirmed, many of whom were advanced in years, was deeply serious and affecting; and the labours of the day were full of comfort, and prompted much thankfulness to God.

Monday, 4th. A large congregation was assembled at the church, although the weather was very discouraging. I preached in behalf of the Committee of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, and 36 l. 10 s. were collected for its funds. After this, a large and respectable number of ladies and gentlemen assembled at the Court-House, the business of the term having been kindly suspended by the /65/ Court for this day; the committee was re-organized; officers were appointed; nearly forty persons requested to become members of the Parent Society; and 50 l. were contributed to the objects of the committee. Many persons were also enrolled as local members. After this, the Archdeacon and Messrs. Carrington, Laugharne, Pering, and Blackman, met me at the parsonage, where they took the oaths, made their subscriptions, and received their institution and licence.

Tuesday, 5th. The weather continued wet and stormy, but we had service again this day; and the Archdeacon preached a very impressive sermon upon the duties consequent to confirmation. I availed myself of an opportunity afforded me this day, for obtaining much information relative to the interior of Newfoundland, from Mr. Cormack, a merchant of St. John's, the only person who has ever penetrated through the centre of the island. He represents it as chiefly consisting of rocky barren land, with many lakes and extensive swamps, but without forests or any land fit for cultivation, except in the neighbourhood of rivers. The journey occupied two months; during which time, Mr. Cormack and his only companion, a Mic-Mac Indian, suffered much from fatigue and privations, and were nearly exhausted at the close of their journey. They saw many herds of deer (cariboo, or rein-deer) and innumerable wild fowl.

Wednesday 6th. I accompanied his Excellency and sundry other gentlemen, on horseback, to Portugal Cove, a beautiful fishing village, on Conception Bay, ten miles from St. John's. Mr. Wix was with us. The scenery is very fine, and was occasionally enriched by immense icebergs in the distance.

The Society formerly had a school at Portugal Cove, taught by Mr. Curtis, who remains here in the service of the Methodists. He teaches about thirty children on weekdays. He reads the Liturgy on Sunday, and delivers an extempore exhortation, when neither Mr. Laugharne nor the Methodist teacher from St. John's is here. There is a neat little building at this place, erected for public worship /66/ at the joint expense of Churchmen and Methodists; a most injudicious plan, which has been too frequently pursued in Newfoundland. Mr. Laugharne generally visits this place every third or fourth Sunday. At my suggestion he will hereafter occasionally spend a few days here, that he may cultivate a pastoral intercourse with the people: the value of which is always obvious. There is a considerable number of Roman Catholics here; but they have no chapel, and are but seldom visited by one of the priests from St. John's, who officiates in a private house.

Thursday, June 7th. Having made arrangements which secured to me the attendance of Archdeacon Coster through the whole of the northern parts of the island, and each of the clergy through the whole extent of his individual charge, I considered it a duty to release Mr. Wix, who returned immediately to the urgent calls for his services in Nova Scotia, although his assistance was so valuable that I could not lose it without regret. I embarked this day on board the Orestes, but was prevented by adverse wind from getting out of the harbour.

Friday, 8th. A threatening day, but we were able to sail, and had a rapid run to Cape Francis, one of the headlands at the mouth of Conception Bay, distant nineteen miles from St. John's. From the Cape we had to work against a strong head-wind, eighteen miles to Harbour Grace, where we anchored in the afternoon. Mr. Burt, the Missionary, who had visited me at St. John's, came on board with Dr. Stirling, one of his churchwardens. The scenery along the shore was bold and romantic; and we passed several splendid icebergs, presenting every possible variety of shape and appearance.

Saturday, 9th. A fine morning enabled us to land early. We were met on the shore by all the principal inhabitants, and a multitude of others. After visiting the parsonage, an old building, but in a comfortable state, we proceeded to the church, a large building, but slightly and unskilfully built. About eleven years ago it was determined by the congregation to make an addition to their old church, which /67/ was effected at an expense of 700 pounds, when the whole was burnt down, and, as was suspected, by an incendiary. A new church was then determined upon, and more than 2000 pounds were collected for the purpose. The frame was so slight, that it was blown down in a storm soon after it was raised. The present church was then erected, and brought to its present condition, at an expense (including the charges of a law-suit with the contractor, for the insufficiency of his work,) of more than 3000 pounds; leaving a debt of 1000 pounds, which hangs like a mill-stone around the congregation, and is the source of continual difficulty and dispute. -- We proceeded to the school of Mr. Bray, who receives a salary from the Society. He is a respectable, but not a popular, person. His children, however, appear to be well taught -- several of them are from respectable families in St. John's, and board with Mr. Bray.

A large number of people met me by appointment in the afternoon. We formed a numerous committee of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, after prayers for a blessing upon our work, and then proceed to consider some of the difficulties by which the church is embarrassed, and the efforts of its best friends have been paralysed. It was agreed, however, that a subscription should be made to accomplish some repairs immediately required. More than 50 pounds were contributed, and the work has been happily accomplished. It was evident, however, that the hopeless condition of the church accounts was a source of great dissatisfaction and discouragement. -- A tomb-stone in the church-yard of this place covers the remains of a mother and her daughter, who died in 1801, -- one at the age of 118, the other 88. The daughter came some distance to visit the mother on her death-bed, and both died within the same hour. We returned, after a busy day, to a late dinner in the Orestes.

Sunday, June 10th. We went in a boat six miles to Carboneer -- a large congregation, chiefly of men, was assembled. The disproportion of males to females is owing to the /68/ fishery from this place being chiefly managed by agents and servants who are yearly imported, and chiefly from Ireland, though some are also from England. St. James's church and burial-ground were consecrated, and seventy persons were confirmed, after an appropriate sermon from the Archdeacon, very instructive and excellent. At this place, which is populous, there is a large Roman Catholic and a large Methodist congregation. There is a good school, supported by the Newfoundland Society, and a smaller one assisted by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. We returned by water, and, as the sea was rough, we could not by any exertion reach the church at Harbour Grace until after four o'clock. The weather was stormy, and some persons who had a long distance to go by water, had returned home; but we found about 1200 persons waiting for us. -- St. Paul's church and burial-ground were consecrated. I preached, and confirmed 332 persons, many of whom appeared much impressed with the solemnity of their engagements. After service, an address was presented, as in various other places, and I improved the opportunity for urging upon all the duty of union and brotherly love, and pressed the necessity for new exertions in behalf of their embarrassed church. The schoolmaster of the Newfoundland Society called upon me, and gave me a return of his school, which is well managed. The Roman Catholics here are numerous, and have a splendid chapel. The priest is a vicar-general. The Methodists also have a large congregation in this place. We did not return to our dinner in the ship until nearly nine o'clock; and I suffered from the vicissitudes of weather -- having been much chilled in the boat in the morning; exceedingly heated in the crowded church at Carboneer -- chilled a second time, and wet with rain, when going to Harbour Grace; again heated almost to suffocation, in the church there; and shivering a third time on my return to the ship.

The whole of Conception Bay is populous, but especially Harbour Grace, Carboneer, and Brigus -- from each of which an extensive Labrador and seal fishery is carried on. One /69/ mercantile house at Carboneer employed more than thirty sail of square-rigged vessels in foreign trade, in the last year, besides thirty-five schooners in the fisheries.

Monday, June 11th. A stormy day with fog and rain, prevented the sailing of the ship, and enabled me to attend to a multitude of papers relating to a grant from government of 100 pounds to a church at Brigus, which is now altogether in the hands of the Methodists; the consequence of agreeing to any partnership in building places for public worship, which has also been assisted by the prevalent want in this island, of definite titles to the grounds that are occupied; a want which will probably be supplied in future, in all cases in which the Church is concerned.

Tuesday, 12th. We sailed at daylight having the Rev. Mr. Burt with us, and also Captain Buchan of the navy, intimately acquainted with all the coasts and harbours of the island, and Mr. Dunscomb, both of whom had kindly attended us from St. John's, to render us any services in their power. We landed at Upper Island Cove, at the mouth of Spaniard's Bay, to inspect a neat little church in good forwardness. It is a wonderful achievement for the poor fishermen in this little settlement; I commended and encouraged their exertions, and they assured me the church should be finished. I have no doubt their promise is already performed. The people here all began to move to Bread and Cheese Cove about a mile and a half distant, where a large congregation was assembled at eleven o'clock. St. John's Church, another neat little building, erected by extraordinary exertions of the people, and its burial-ground which had been neatly enclosed in expectation of my arrival, were consecrated, and seventy-nine persons with great apparent seriousness and devotion were confirmed, after an appropriate sermon from the Archdeacon; and I endeavoured to encourage their perseverance in every good work. Our ship had proceeded to good anchorage in Bay Roberts, and we followed in a boat to the church at that place; after giving instructions to Mr. Richard Wills, the Society's schoolmaster at Bread and Cheese Cove, a /70/ respectable person, who reads every Sunday at that place and Island Cove, and is well attended.

The church at Bay Roberts is a neat but unfinished building. Here I preached, confirmed fifty-six persons, and consecrated the burial-ground. There is a large Methodist meeting-house at this place, served by a preacher from Port de Grave, and also a Methodist Sunday-school. Mr. Williams the Society's schoolmaster is aged, but able to read on Sunday, and is tolerably well attended. From hence we crossed the Bay in a boat to Baremeed, where I consecrated St. Mark's Church, a very small building, and its burial-ground. The Society's schoolmaster here having lately engaged in trade, must be replaced whenever a fit person can be found. We gave notice of an intended confirmation on the following day at Ship Cove, in this neighbourhood; and returned to our ship to dine after eight o'clock, having this day visited four churches in different settlements.

Wednesday, June 13th. The ship was at sail at an early hour, and having rounded the point of Bay Roberts we landed at Ship Cove before ten o'clock. St. Luke's Church, a well finished new building, and its burial-ground were consecrated, and seventy-five persons were confirmed after a sermon for the occasion. More than fifty who were anxious to be confirmed were kept away by dread of the measles, as all contagious disorders in the fishing season are ruinous to these poor people. I strongly urged upon the principal persons here the duty and necessity of every possible exertion to increase the comfort and usefulness of Mr. Blackman, the Missionary who was soon to be with them. One hundred children attended a Sunday-school in this place which is gratuitously taught, and chiefly by the members of one respectable family, Mr. Furneaux. A good daily school is greatly wanted in this place, and will be well deserving of the Society's assistance, as with good arrangement it may be made to supply instruction to most of the children at Baremeed, Port de Grave, and Ship Cove.

In sailing from this place we visited a great natural curiosity near Cupids, a settlement chiefly in the occupation /71/ of Methodists, who have a large Sunday-school there. We passed in our boat under a magnificent arch formed in the rock, into a narrow cut or fissure several hundred yards in length, through which there was barely room for the boat. The water, which was beautifully transparent, was many fathoms deep, but we could plainly see every thing at the bottom, which abounded with fish, and shells, and curious marine plants. On either side the rock rose perpendicularly nearly 200 feet, and its fragments seemed so slightly fastened, that we apprehended the motion of the oars or our voices would bring some of them down upon us. From hence we sailed to Brigus, a beautiful and flourishing fishing village or fishing town, whose harbour was full of vessels that were gaily dressed with their flags. Owing to the want of a clergyman, who might have been advantageously stationed here some years ago, this place is chiefly in the hands of the Methodists, very much through the extensive influence of Mr. Cozens the principal merchant, and a respectable, exemplary man. The church as it was once called, and, as such, was assisted with 100 pounds from Government, is in their sole occupation. Mr. Meaden, the Society's schoolmaster at Brigus, a very respectable and fit person, has about thirty daily scholars. The Methodists supersede his employment at this place on Sunday, and he therefore reads at Salmon Cove four miles distant, where he has also about thirty Sunday scholars. I visited the patriarch of the place, Mr. Munden, a native of Bridport in England, but a resident here during the last seventy-five years. He is now beyond the age of ninety. I had much pleasure in ministering to his spiritual comfort. Here we parted from Mr. Burt. We embarked in the evening, and had a delightful sail to Lance Cove in Bell Isle, where the ship, which had no anchorage during the day, anchored for the night.

Thursday, June 14th. The weather continued delightfully fine and this day was very hot, although many icebergs were in view, some of which in consequence of the heat foundered, as it is here said, and were broken into numberless fragments with noise like the sound of distant cannon. /72/ We landed at Lance Cove, where there are about ten Protestant families, and left the Archdeacon to baptize several children and follow us in the ship. As Bell Isle is considered a very fertile part of Newfoundland I preferred a walk of three miles, through a very bad path that crossed several swamps and some difficult precipices. The magnificence of the cliff scenery, which is on a very grand scale, amply compensated for our toil. At noon we embarked and sailed to Portugal Cove, where we landed Captain Buchan and Mr. Dunscomb for their return to St. John's; and had a very rapid run to Trinity Bay, sixty miles, thirty-five of which only occupied three hours. We anchored in the harbour of Trinity at nine o'clock, and the Rev. Mr. Bullock immediately came on board, and made a very favourable report of his success in preparing for confirmation. We were very thankful to have escaped the thick fog and numerous icebergs that were outside of the harbour.

Friday, June 15th. Captain Jones had me in a boat at a very early hour, that we might row through the different branches of this fine harbour, and see its beautiful scenery, before any business could engage us. Mr. Bullock came immediately after breakfast to attend me either to Bonaventura, ten miles distant, or English harbour, three miles in an opposite direction. The best boat was manned for the purpose, but a thick fog and high wind prevented the attempt. I visited the church at Trinity, which is a remarkably neat, well finished, and commodious building, but greatly wants a steeple, which is in forwardness while I am writing this report. Our next visit was to the Newfoundland Society's school, which is well taught by Mr. Fleet, and contains eighty-eight children; it is the only school in the place and very useful, it is open on Sundays and well attended. Of the children, fourteen are Methodists, seven Roman Catholics, and sixty-seven belong to the Church, which they regularly attend with their schoolmaster. There is a Methodist meeting-house and a resident preacher here, but his congregation is not numerous, nor are the Roman Catholics. Saturday, 16th. A fine morning induced us to renew the /73/ attempt in which we had failed yesterday. We breakfasted early, were in our boat, before six o'clock, and at Bonaventura before nine. Some time was required to assemble the women from the neighbouring settlements of Old Bonaventura and Careless Harbour; the men were chiefly out in their fishing boats, but those whom we passed left their fishing and followed us to the shore. They appeared to be a simple and affectionate people warmly attached to the Church. I had therefore the greater pleasure in consecrating their humble little church, St. John's, and its burial-ground. They readily promised an enlargement and improvement of both, and an attention to the improvement of their path ways, that their women and children may attend the public worship with dry feet, which is now impossible even at Midsummer. So little regard has been paid to the internal improvement of the island, that in every part of it these paths were lately in the same wretched state in which they were more than a century ago, and the people seemed totally ignorant of the facility with which they could improve them. In this respect the clergy are doing much for them, that their attendance at church may be made easy. The Archdeacon has by his personal influence and regular superintendence, induced his congregation to make three miles of excellent road at Bonavista. Mr. Chapman has done the same at Toulinquet or Twillingate, and now the facility is discovered, the work will be extended every year. I obtained a promise from the different settlements in Trinity Bay, that under Mr. Bullock's direction a good bridle road shall be made to connect all the places that can be visited by a clergyman. Mr. Thompson, the Society's schoolmaster at Bonaventura, in addition to a daily school, attends the children on Sunday, and reads twice to an attentive little congregation, but he is infirm. On our return we were greatly delayed by a north-east gale; although our boat had twelve oars, we advanced only half a mile in an hour, and were sadly knocked about, till being thoroughly chilled, Mr. Bullock landed with me as soon as it was possible to make the shore, and we walked several miles through a /74/ different country to Trinity, where we arrived after dark having an arm of the sea to cross, and I had to get into a boat after this to reach the ship.

Sunday, June 17th. A very fine day, for which we were all thankful, as many of our congregation had to come from distant places by water. St. Paul's Church and burial-ground at Trinity were consecrated in the morning, when I preached to a crowded and attentive audience. In the afternoon the congregation was still greater, 367 persons were confirmed. The Archdeacon addressed them in a very solemn manner. Every individual had been separately instructed and examined, as was the case generally throughout the island. One poor woman came eighteen miles in a small boat to be confirmed, without any other assistance than her son, eight years old, could afford, and was exposed to part of the gale which had been so inconvenient to myself on the preceding day. It was very gratifying to me to learn that the memory and long and valuable services of the Society's late Missionary in this place, the Rev. Mr. Clinch, who was a person of primitive zeal and manner, were most gratefully cherished; the effect of his faithful labours is manifest, and doubtless they have been greatly blessed.

Monday, June 18th. The Archdeacon and Mr. Bullock came on board the Orestes before four in the morning, and the ship was immediately under sail; but the wind was so light and variable that the whole day was consumed in going to New Perlican or Pelican, thirty miles, where we anchored at night, and landed Mr. Bullock to give notice of our arrival, and prepare for service. This day we passed an enormous iceberg more than 500 feet above the surface of the water.

Tuesday, 19th. Mr. Bullock had a preparatory service at seven in the morning. I landed at nine, found a numerous congregation, of whom fifty-four were confirmed and addressed. I urged the people to complete their church, all the materials for which were collected, and obtained their warm assurances of attention in every respect to the comfort of any Missionary who should be sent to their side of Trinity /75/ Bay. I encouraged them to expect one, who, I am thankful to say, is now there, Mr. Otto S. Weeks, in Deacon's orders. At eleven we proceeded in a boat four miles to Sillee's Cove, generally called Silly Cove; but the impossibility of giving notice on the preceding evening prevented the assembling of the people, all the men having gone at daylight to fish in their boats. The old church having fallen into decay from age, a new one has been erected, and will soon be finished. We visited the Society's aged and venerable schoolmaster, Mr. John Thomas, now eighty-seven years old. He has laboured faithfully in this place since the year 1777, just half a century; and the effect of his instruction is visible in this and all the adjoining settlements. He is now dependent for support upon the small allowance he receives from the Society; and as he can no longer labour in his office, he was apprehensive this would be taken from him, but I encouraged him to hope otherwise. We ministered to his temporal and spiritual comfort, and left him cheered by our visit, for which he was very grateful. Sillee's Cove is a very neat little settlement; its inhabitants, with few exceptions, are members of the Church, and were greatly delighted with the prospect of having a clergyman on this side of Trinity Bay.

The ship came to us from New Perlican, and anchored in the evening at Heart's Content, a beautiful harbour containing fifty families, chiefly belonging to the Church. The Archdeacon and Mr. Bullock immediately landed, and were busily occupied in preparing all who were desirous to be admitted to the solemn rite of confirmation. The weather continued fine, but the fishing season had commenced in consequence of the arrival of swarms of Capelin, the favourite bait. We were well aware that this must prove a serious obstruction to our objects.

Wednesday, June 20th. Mr. Bullock had stopped all the boats belonging to Heart's Content, and at nine o'clock I found a large congregation assembled. St. Mary's church, a neat building, and burial-ground were consecrated, and sixty-four persons were confirmed, after a sermon on the subject. /76/ Here, as in other places, promises were cheerfully, and, as I believe, sincerely made to do every thing for the comfort of a Missionary and schoolmaster, to procure a legal conveyance of the church property, and to improve the roads. At noon we embarked, but as there was no wind we took an early dinner, and went in a boat seven miles to Heart's Delight, where there is a slight church, but in want of repair. It might have been consecrated if the people had been at home, but there was only one man in the settlement, and he was confined with measles; the rest were in their fishing boats. I commissioned this individual to offer them my sincere good wishes and my earnest desire that they would bear their part in providing for the comfort of a Missionary, and the complete repair of the church. He assured me that this desire would be duly regarded. The soil in this neighbourhood is very good, and a valuable glebe may be provided. The land is also well covered with wood. No exertions could bring the ship to New Harbour as we anxiously wished, and we anchored for the night in Shoal Bay, an exposed roadstead.

Tuesday, June 21st. The ship was under sail at daylight, and worked against a strong breeze to New Harbour, before seven o'clock, but, unfortunately, the men were nearly all away at the fishery, which had commenced with an extraordinary promise of success. The Archdeacon and Mr. Bullock collected the few that were left, and as many women as could immediately attend. St. George's Church and burial-ground were consecrated, and twenty-four persons, who seemed deeply impressed with the solemnity of the ordinance, were confirmed. The baptism of several children detained us some time, but we embarked before two o'clock, and in five hours we were at Trinity, a distance of fifty miles.

Sir Thomas Cochrane, who was to sail from St. John's in his yacht, soon after we had left that place, to visit the southern shore, had requested us to meet him on an isthmus between the bays of Placentia and Trinity. This isthmus is only two miles wide, while the ships, by the water communication, were 500 miles asunder. It was his Excellency's /77/ kind intention to have taken us in his yacht to all the settlements in Placentia Bay; and he crossed the isthmus twice on foot in search of us; but we found it would entirely prevent my spending a Sunday with each of the clergy, and I was therefore obliged reluctantly to relinquish so pleasant an arrangement.

Friday, June 22d. After a rainy night, the ship was under sail at four in the morning, and ran to Bonavista Head, forty miles, in a few hours, sailing past many icebergs. The fishing-boats on the coast were innumerable. We anchored at Bonavista at one o'clock; but the harbour is difficult, and not secure. We landed in the afternoon, and were received on the shore by all the principal inhabitants, who conducted us to the church and parsonage, both of which are respectable and convenient buildings. We had an uncomfortable row to the ship at night, through heavy squalls of wind and rain.

Saturday, 23d. A fine day after a stormy night. We landed soon after breakfast, and received many visitors. We afterwards called at the Newfoundland Society's school, but, being Saturday, no children were assembled. The master gave us full information, and a written report of his school. We afterwards walked nearly three miles, upon a road lately made through the Archdeacon's exertions, to Lance Cove, which being the nearest landing-place to Bonavista Head, the first land discovered in this western world by Cabot, is probably the first spot that was trodden by an European foot. Here we embarked in a boat which had been sent for the purpose, and rowed into, and along, and through some magnificent caves; but in consequence of a heavy swell the boat struck upon a sunken rock in one of them, under some terrific heights. We dined at the Archdeacon's.

Sunday, June 24th. A very fine day, for which all of us were thankful. We landed at ten o'clock, and met a large congregation. Christ's Church and burial-ground were consecrated, and I preached to attentive hearers. In the afternoon the church was crowded to excess. Two hundred and ten /78/ persons were confirmed, and I addressed them seriously. We returned to the ship in the evening to dinner.

Monday, June 25th. The weather was fair, but the wind unfavourable. The ship, however, worked out of the harbour at an early hour, and was at King's Cove, ten miles, before nine o'clock. Most of the inhabitants here are Roman Catholic, but a few families belong to the Church, and by their spirited efforts, and some little assistance from the Society, a neat church, St. James's, has been erected, which was consecrated, with its burial-ground. Twenty-seven persons were confirmed, whom I afterwards addressed. The priest who resides here, Mr. Sinnett, is highly spoken of; and Mr. Murphy, the chief person here, who is a Roman Catholic, was particularly attentive to us, as he is to every clergyman of the Church who visits the place. Mr. Joseph Saunders, the Society's catechist, a worthy man, with moderate qualifications, reads on Sunday, and has a Sunday-school.

We re-embarked at one o'clock, and were soon off Kiels or Keels, six miles. The Archdeacon and Mr. Bullock had some difficulty in explaining the nature of confirmation, and preparing the people for it, with suitable impression, for there has been no school here; very few can read; and the consequent ignorance is alike perceptible and deplorable. Nothing could be more strongly marked than the effects of this ignorance were, even in the countenances of the people. About one-third are Roman Catholics, the remainder belong to the Church. Here, as at King's Cove, we had given previous notice of our visit, and the boats were stopped, so that most of the inhabitants were assembled. The church (St. Philip's) and the burial-ground were consecrated. The building is substantial, and very sufficient for the place. Its erection was chiefly owing to the exertions of Mr. Hobbs, of this place, now an aged man, and so deaf, that it was impossible to converse with him, beyond a commendation of his zeal and liberality. His father and grandfather died here. Thirty-seven persons were confirmed, and many children were baptized. Mr. Joseph Mesh, the reader here, is very insufficiently /79/ qualified, but is the best the place affords. Mr. Wills, a trader from Conception Bay, just commencing an establishment, promised to open a Sunday-school immediately.

We returned to the ship at six in the evening, and proceeded to Salvage, thirteen miles, but finding no anchorage, we gave notice for early service the next morning, and stood off for the night. Many islands in this neighbourhood enrich the scenery.

Tuesday, June 26th. We landed at Salvage before six o'clock, and found the people still on the fish stages, where they had passed the night in curing the immense quantities they had caught on the preceding day. A large congregation was assembled, of whom forty-nine were confirmed. Boats filled with people continued to arrive as long as we remained, and as all of them brought children for baptism, we were inconveniently delayed, especially as the ship was in rather a critical situation. When, as we supposed, all was finished, and we had put off from the shore on our return, another boat arrived, and we were obliged to land again, upon the entreaty of a mother with many tears, that we would not leave her infant unbaptized, as she knew not when any other opportunity for its baptism might be afforded. The Society's schoolmaster here, Mr. James Sheldon, has been very useful. He has a daily school except in full fishing season, and a Sunday-school throughout the year, attended by more than fifty scholars, whose proficiency is very creditable to him. He also reads on Sunday; and the contrast between this place and Keels, only a few miles distant, marks the value of his services. The church here is well built, but will not be finished till the winter. I had much conversation with most of the people after the service, and urged them to adorn their profession in all things. Every inhabitant but one, as I was informed, is a member of the Church. Soon after we reached the ship, she was enveloped in fog, and being now in a dangerous navigation, surrounded by many rocks and icebergs, we were obliged to give up the prospect of landing, until the weather should clear.

Wednesday, June 27th. Our situation during the night, /80/ in consequence of fog, icebergs, and rocks, required every possible precaution; and even so we hardly escaped, for in trying to avoid one danger, we were immediately exposed to another. So much ice was about us, that the mercury fell nearly to the freezing point. In the morning, a momentary diminution of the fog enabled Mr. Bullock, who is intimately acquainted with the coast, to ascertain our situation, and by a great press of sail, we were enabled to get to Greenspond about noon, when the fog became more dense than before. Had we been a few days earlier, we should have found this place completely closed against us by floating ice. Immense quantities were still here, and a large iceberg was grounded in the harbour. The principal gentleman of the place came on board. The Archdeacon and Mr. Bullock landed, assembled the people for evening service, and prepared as many as they could for confirmation. We were not expected here, in consequence of the shore being so obstructed by ice, and therefore they had much to engage them. The weather was unfavourable, and they remained on shore, but I slept in the ship.

Thursday, June 28th. I landed soon after six, and found a large congregation waiting for me. St. Stephen's church, a very respectable building, was consecrated, but the burial-ground was not sufficiently inclosed; seventy-six persons were confirmed. In the midst of the ceremony, I waited for the baptism of a woman, who was afterwards confirmed: she and all around her were deeply affected. The Newfoundland Society have promised teachers to this place, and a school and dwelling-house for their reception are in progress. But the people are unfortunately distracted by contentions, which check every good undertaking. There are many respectable persons here, much trade, and a large congregation, chiefly attached to the Church; and it may be hoped, that by the blessing of God upon the faithful labours of a discreet and pious clergyman, whenever such can be sent, much good will be effected. I encouraged the expectation of a clergyman, and of a schoolmaster, if the Newfoundland Society should be unable to assist them; and I earnestly /81/ exhorted them to co-operate in putting down all contention, and to mutual forgiveness, and Christian love.

We had proposed to remain here some hours, but a favourable breeze tempted us away, and placed us in the midst of icebergs, as soon as we were well out of the harbour. Our progress did not exceed thirty-five miles during the day, in the course of which it was supposed that we saw not less than 1000, as more than 300 were in sight at the same moment. Some were more than half a mile in length, and more than 500 feet above the water, seven-eighths of their bulk generally, and sometimes nine-tenths, being under water. They assume every possible shape, and there is great variety in the view of any one of them, from different points. Some are like castles; some like cathedrals; some like mosques; some like farm-yards, with all their appropriate buildings; some have cataracts falling from them; some have arches so immense that a ship under full sail might pass through them. A very large one was broken by shot from our guns. Several thousand tons of ice were dislodged from one side, like an avalanche, when the whole mass rolled, until nearly the same quantity fell from the opposite side, with a motion as slow and stately as the launch of a first-rate ship, and with noise like thunder; after which the centre, as if relieved of too heavy a burthen, rose majestically to a greater height than at first. Even the largest of these astonishing masses are evidently fragments; some of them have large rocks on the top, which have stuck in them when they have been aground, and are so firmly fixed that they remain, after the mass has rolled over, and that part which was the bottom of it thus becomes the top.

This day we witnessed another very curious scene. An immense whale attacked by several threshers, a fish from sixteen to eighteen feet in length, who spring from the water, and fall with such violence on the back of the whale, that his flesh is beaten to a jelly, while the sword-fish pierces him beneath, and keeps him on the surface of the water. The contest generally ends with the death of one of the parties: and after the death, they are sometimes taken by the /82/ fishermen, who find them floating on the water, or thrown upon the shore. But I must return from these digressions.

Friday, June 29th. A fine day, with light wind, which brought us nearly to the island of Fogo. The number of icebergs was so sensibly diminished, that we hoped for a clear sea at night, but upon counting them, 114 were seen from the deck.

Saturday, June 30th. The night was fine, and the ship was under topsails only, as there was a very rocky and dangerous passage a-head, which could not be attempted till the morning. Through this we passed safely, and anchored at Toulinquet before noon. The missionary, Mr. Chapman, came on board, with his principal churchwarden, Mr. Pearce; and after completing arrangements for a preparatory service in the evening, and for the duties of the following day, we landed, and visited the church and parsonage, which are large, but ill built, and unhappily encumbered with a debt of 1500 pounds, which never will be paid. As the parsonage at Bonavista, and several other churches in Newfoundland are in the same situation, it may be proper to explain the cause. Some years ago, when the fisheries were most productive, and money consequently abundant, the merchants, who are the chief managers here, undertook the buildings, upon a subscription made by the numerous individuals who dealt with them, each of whom was debited in the merchants' books with the sum he had agreed to subscribe. When the fisheries failed, as they did very rapidly, and money was no longer abundant, the planters and fishermen increased their debts to the merchant for indispensable supplies, and the subscriptions still stand to their debit. The buildings, hastily erected, soon shew symptoms of decay, and the subscribers, if they could command the money they promised, would rather expend it on new and more substantial edifices; for it is manifest that the old buildings are often not worth half of the money that is due for them -- and they are apt to think that the advantages of the former state of things were chiefly secured by the merchants. In this way the 1500 pounds due from the church and parsonage at Toulinquet, /83/ is due chiefly to three mercantile houses, and I could not have consecrated the church, if these houses had not kindly and properly consented to secure the property to the Church, and signed the petition for the consecration.

We found at least half of the inhabitants here confined with measles, and those who have escaped are afraid to venture from their homes, lest they should take the infection. The fishery here, as in several other places, had begun the day before our arrival, the commencement of the fishery being always determined by the arrival of the bait, which, upon its first appearance, engages every individual, lest a single day of the short and uncertain season should be lost. There is no schoolmaster at this place, but great occasion for one. The Missionary teaches a Sunday-school, which has sometimes been attended by 100 scholars. The mercury was at 58 degrees this day outside of the harbour, but upon coming within, it rose to 71 degrees in the short space of ten minutes. In the evening the Archdeacon and Mr. Bullock collected a small congregation, and assisted Mr. Chapman in preparing for confirmation.

Sunday, July 1st. We had a better congregation in the morning than we expected. St. Peter's Church and burial-ground were consecrated, and the Archdeacon preached a very interesting sermon, but many of the people seem uncouth and wild, with little devotion and much apathy. The congregation, as is usual in Newfoundland, was larger in the afternoon, and I endeavoured to rouse them. Ninety-three were confirmed, some of whom shewed good feeling, but the church was so noisy, and so much interrupted by running in and out during the service, that after the close of it I collected the principal persons, and spoke so much and so seriously on these points, that with much apparent sincerity they promised their best endeavours for improvement, and I have reason to hope that their engagement has been fulfilled. Here, as at Greenspond, there is much jarring; and some very wild religious opinions have been introduced. Mr. Chapman seems earnestly desirous to promote their best interests, and discharge all his duties faithfully.

/84/ The ship had sailed, to save time, as Captain Jones intended to get round the island of Toulinquet, and pick me up on the opposite side. The vessel however was becalmed, in consequence of which I had a long row before I got on board; after which a light breeze enabled her to proceed towards Exploits, Burnt Island. Mr. Chapman accompanied us, and I greatly regretted that we were unable to visit Morton's Harbour, where he occasionally officiates.

Monday, July 2d. A current during the night had taken us out of our course, but before ten o'clock we entered Exploits Bay, which forms the mouth of a noble river of the same name. We landed on Burnt Island, where there is a fishing settlement and a church, but as no clergyman had been here for some time, we left Mr. Chapman on shore to prepare the people for confirmation, and returned to the ship with Mr. Peyton, the principal magistrate of the place, and a very intelligent person, who was formerly in the Navy Pay Office, but came to this place because his father required his assistance. We had hardly reached the ship when a violent gale of wind arose, in which several boats and some lives were lost upon the coast. The wind however was fair, and we ran very rapidly for twenty-five miles up this magnificent river, with the topsails on the caps, when we anchored in a very safe harbour.

Tuesday, 3d. This was the first day since I left Halifax that was devoted to personal gratification. The weather was fine, but as hot as I have ever felt it. While the ship was being provided with wood, we went in the boats about thirteen miles up the river to a rapid, where we landed, and walked about two miles to a splendid waterfall. The land is good, finely wooded with large timber, and the scenery is rich and picturesque. Mr. Peyton, who was with us, has twelve fishing stations for salmon along thirty miles of the river, and the abundance of seal, deer, wild fowl, and game of every description is surprising. But our interest in all we saw was greatly increased by knowing that this was the retreat of the Beothick, or red, or wild Indians, until the last four or five years. We were on several of their stations and saw many /85/ of their traces. These stations were admirably chosen on points of land, where they were concealed by the forest, but had long views up and down the river, to guard against surprise. When Cabot first landed, he took away three of this unhappy tribe, and from that day to the present they have had reason to lament the discovery of their island by Europeans. Not the least advancement has been made towards their civilization. They are still clothed in skins, if any remnant of their race be left, and bows and arrows are their only weapons. English and French, and Mic-Macs and mountaineers, and Labradors and Esquimaux shoot at the Beothick as they shoot at the deer. The several attempts that have been made under the sanction of Government to promote an intercourse with this race have been most unfortunate, though some of them had every prospect of success. An institution has been formed in the present year to renew these praiseworthy attempts, the expenses of which must be borne by benevolent individuals; and while I am writing, Mr. Cormack, the enterprising individual who was named in page 65 of this report, is engaged in a search for the remnant of the race; but as it is known that they were reduced to the greatest distress by being driven from the shores and rivers, where alone they could procure sufficient food, and none have been seen for several years, it is feared by some that a young woman who was brought in about four years ago, and is now living in Mr. Peyton's family, is the only survivor of her tribe. The Beothick Institution have now assumed the charge of this interesting female, that she may be well instructed and provided for. Mr. Cormack has only taken with him one Mic-Mac, one mountaineer, and one Canadian Indian, and they are provided with shields to protect them from arrows, that they may not be compelled to fire. If any remain, they are hidden in the most retired covers of the forest, which is chiefly confined to the margins of lakes and the banks of rivers. Mr. Cormack and his three companions are provided with various hieroglyphics and emblems of peace, and hope to discover the objects of their pursuit by looking from the tops of hills for their /86/ smoke, which may sometimes be seen at the distance of eight or ten miles in the dawn of a calm frosty morning. Who can fail to wish complete success to so charitable an attempt? We returned to our ship in the evening greatly delighted with every thing we had seen, but much exhausted with excessive heat; several of the party also suffered from the mosquitoes, which were innumerable.

Wednesday, July 4th. The weather continued fine, and we had a rapid sail down the river at an early hour in the morning, making only one stop at a beautiful fishing station on Sandy Point, from whence the Beothick a few years ago stole a vessel and several hundred pounds worth of property from Mr. Peyton. Between nine and ten we landed at Burnt Island, and while the clergy were engaged in assembling the people for service, I had some conversation with Shanawdithit, the Beothick young woman I have already mentioned. The history of her introduction to Mr. Peyton's family is soon related. In April, 1823, a party of furriers in the neighbourhood of the Exploits River followed the traces of some Red Indians, until they came to a wigwam or hut, from whence an Indian had just gone, and near it they found an old woman, so infirm that she could not escape. They took her to Mr. Peyton's, where she was kindly treated, and laden with presents. After a few days she was left at her wigwam, while the furriers searched for others. Two females were soon discovered, whose dress was but little different from that of the men. Though much alarmed, they were made to understand by signs that the old woman, who was their mother, was at hand. The man who had been first seen was their father, who was drowned by falling through the ice. The women were in such lamentable want of food that they were easily induced to go to Mr. Peyton's. He took them to St. John's, where every thing they could desire was given to them, and after a stay of ten days they were taken back to Exploits, and returned to their wigwam, in full confidence that an amicable intercourse with their tribe would be established. One of the young women, who had suffered some time from a /87/ pulmonary complaint, died as soon as she was landed. In a short time the other two returned to one of Mr. Peyton's stations nearly famished, and very soon after they arrived there the old woman also died, and Mr. Peyton has retained her daughter, Shanawdithit, in his family ever since. She is fond of his children, who leave their mother to go to her, and soon learned all that was necessary to make her useful in the family. Her progress in the English language has been slow, and I greatly lamented to find that she had not received sufficient instruction to be baptized and confirmed. I should have brought her to Halifax for this purpose, but her presence will be of infinite importance if any more of her tribe should be discovered. She is now twenty-three years old, very interesting, rather graceful, and of a good disposition; her countenance mild, and her voice soft and harmonious. Sometimes a little sullenness appears, and an anxiety to wander, when she will pass twenty-four hours in the woods, and return; but this seldom occurs. She is fearful that her race has died from want of food. Mr. Peyton has learnt from her that the traditions of the Beothick represent their descent from the Labrador Indians, but the language of one is wholly unintelligible to the other. All that could be discovered of their religion is, that they feared some powerful monster, who was to appear from the sea, and punish the wicked. They consider death as a long sleep, and it is customary to bury the implements and ornaments of the dead in the same grave with their former possessors. They believe in incantations. When the girl who died was very ill, her mother, who was of a violent and savage disposition, heated large stones, and then poured water upon them until she was encircled by the fumes, from the midst of which she uttered horrid shrieks, expecting benefit to her suffering child.

Mr. Chapman had been diligent in visiting and instructing the people during our short absence in the upper part of the river. A congregation was assembled at eleven o'clock, and forty-nine persons were confirmed. All of these were /88/ very decorous in their whole behaviour, and many of them appeared sincerely devout. Shanawdithit was present. She perfectly understood that we were engaged in religious services, and seemed struck with their solemnity. Her whole deportment was serious and becoming. She was also made to understand my regret that her previous instruction had not been such as to allow of her baptism and confirmation, and my hope and expectation that she would be well prepared if it should please God that we met again. Mr. Peyton pledged himself that every possible endeavour should be made for this purpose.

The church at Exploits, Burnt Island, is ill-constructed, and most inconveniently situated; the people therefore, at my suggestion, engaged to take it down, and reconstruct it in a fitter place and in a better manner. There is very great occasion for a school in this place, and as Mr. William Mosdell, a competent person of good character, was willing to undertake the office, I recommended his immediately taking the charge, and promised to request for him an allowance of 15 pounds a-year from the Society, to commence from July 1, 1827. He will also teach a Sunday School and read to the people. A Dissenter who had been accustomed to read, willingly resigned the employment, as he thought Mr. Mosdell was well qualified; and being much pleased with the doctrines and services of the Church, after due examination, he gladly united himself with her.

This place may be considered as our northern frontier of Newfoundland, being not far distant from Cape John, where the French fishing establishments begin. From this place therefore we turned towards St. John's, and in the evening were off the Island of Fogo, forty miles distant from Exploits. As there was not a sufficient harbour for the Orestes at the chief settlement, we left the ship, and she proceeded to Shoal Bay, an open roadstead, while we landed to give notice and prepare the people. Messrs. Bullock and Chapman remained on shore for this purpose, while the Archdeacon returned with me to the ship, distant from us four /89/ miles; the wind blowing so hard that we were in much danger. It was agreed that we should land so early as to have service at four o'clock on the following morning.

Thursday, July 5. After a very tempestuous night, which was fatal to several boats and their crews on the coast, I was called at two in the morning, but the lieutenant of the watch reported the wind so violent and the sea so rough, that a boat could not go to the shore with safety. I was therefore prevented from landing until eight, when it was not effected without difficulty. I found that the people assembled at four, when the clergy detained them at service till seven. Despairing of seeing me, as the ship was so far from them, they then dispersed, and the lulling of the storm which enabled me to land, enabled the men to go to their fishing stations, while the women repaired to their labour at the fish stages. The latter, however, and a few of the former were recalled. St. Andrew's Church, a very sufficient building, and burial-ground were consecrated, and forty persons were confirmed. The principal people assured me of their desire to promote all the benevolent designs of the Society to the utmost of their power. Churchwardens were appointed, and engagements made for forming a committee of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. I was pleased with all I saw, and heartily commended the people to the blessing of God. Mr. James Bell, who teaches a Sunday School, and reads on that day, has superior qualifications for those offices, and is a most respectable and exemplary person; but a daily school is greatly wanted, and so remote is this island from the clergy, and so difficult of access, that a Missionary ought to be stationed here. We left Mr. Chapman at this island, having passed it on our way to Exploits, and deferred our visit till on our return, on purpose to have him with us. He was very attentive, and is most anxious to be useful. At twelve we embarked, and having a delightful breeze, we made rapid progress, and passed the peculiarly dangerous navigation around Cape Freels before the night closed upon us, and in the midst of icebergs, as before.

Friday, July 6th. The sea was very rough during the /90/ night, and the Archdeacon was very unwell. He was put into a fishing-boat early this morning, and landed at Bird Island Cove, five miles from Bonavista, soon after daylight, but not without difficulty, as the sea was still rough, and the fog thick, and our ship narrowly escaped a dangerous reef of rocks in effecting it. His services had been so valuable, and his assistance and society so useful and agreeable, that I could not part from him without regret. At noon we were near Trinity, and landed Mr. Bullock, for whose attentions I was much indebted. Being robust and active, he had gone through extraordinary labour, and with great earnestness and delight. Here I received a letter from Admiral Lake, acquainting me that it would be necessary that the Orestes should remain on the Newfoundland station, for which she was peculiarly adapted, and that he had directed Captain Canning in his Majesty's ship Alligator to come from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to St. John's, and take me from thence to the Bay of Chaleur, and from that to any other places I might wish to visit on my way to Halifax. We proceeded on our voyage.

Saturday, July 7th. Although much delayed by head winds and rough sea, we arrived in the evening of this day in the harbour of St. John's. Sir Thomas Cochrane had not returned, but had left directions for my occupation of his house and establishment; but, having several places to visit before I should quit the Orestes, I preferred remaining in the ship.

Sunday, July 8th. The weather fine, but very warm. I preached in the morning to a large congregation at St. John's Church, and afterwards consecrated the burial-ground. In the afternoon I confirmed sixty-four persons, whom I addressed. Their whole deportment was most becoming. In the evening I returned to the ship.

Monday, July 9th. After many visits from the shore, and the completion of arrangements with Mr. Laugharne for attending to Torbay and Petty Harbour, which are difficult of access, I landed with Mr. Carrington, and devoted most of the morning to an examination of Mr. Bacon's /91/ school, which is assisted by the Society, but chiefly supported by Government, and quite free. Mr. Bacon is a superior master, and his pupils did him great credit. He has 140 names on his books; his average attendance is 110; but this day, owing to the prevalence of measles and fever, he had only 70. His school is well attended on Sunday. Arrangements were now made for his going to Halifax, for full instruction in the national system. The girls' school, taught by Miss Rennell, a very respectable person, varies from 80 to 100. It requires some superintendence, and to be opened on Sundays; for which purposes I engaged the assistance of the principal ladies of St. John's.

Tuesday, July 10th. I set out in a boat for Torbay (nine miles) at six in the morning, where Mr. Laugharne and his congregation were ready for me at nine. St. Nicholas church and its burial-ground were consecrated. Fifty-two persons were confirmed; and I have seldom addressed a more attentive congregation than I found in this humble settlement, with which it was impossible not to be gratified. About half the population are members of the Church of Rome, who chiefly reside on one side of the harbour, and the other is occupied chiefly by the Protestants, a circumstance not unusual in this island. Mr. Laugharne was prevailed upon to return with us in the boat, but as we were on the ocean, and the sea was rough, he suffered exceedingly, and was seriously ill. We took shelter, during a shower, in a very magnificent cave, into whose entrance the Orestes might have sailed, as it was not much less than 200 feet in height. The water was deep, but most beautifully transparent. This day's engagement kept me nearly eight hours in the boat. The reader at this place, a poor fisherman, is warmly recommended by Mr. Laugharne, for a small allowance from the Society. A school is very desirable here. In the evening I received letters from Halifax, informing me of the death of a very affectionate and beloved sister, Mrs. Pidgeon.

Wednesday, 11th. I remained on board the Orestes, and wrote to the Society's Secretary on several important points.

Thursday, 12th. The weather was so unpromising that /92/ Captain Jones did not think it safe for a boat to venture upon the open sea until after nine o'clock, when it became more moderate, and we set out for Petty Harbour, ten miles; but our passage was rough and uncomfortable, and so impeded by a heavy swell, that we did not arrive till after one o'clock. Most of the Protestants had remained at home to receive me, and the few boats that had gone to their fishing ground returned as soon as we were seen approaching the harbour. This is one of the neatest fishing villages in Newfoundland. The Romanists are all on one side of the harbour, and the Protestants, who are all members of the Church, on the other. Like Torbay, it has communication with St. John's by land; but the path is only fit for foot-passengers. Mr. Laugharne was here to receive me, and I was again attended by Colonel Dunscomb, who had been with me at Torbay, and presented handsome flags to the churches at both places. Flags are used throughout Newfoundland, to give notice of service, and every church has its flag-staff. The flag is hoisted to the top at an early hour, lowered half-mast half an hour before service, and entirely when the service commences. St. David's church and burial-ground were consecrated, and seventy-eight persons were confirmed. The church is a very neat building, and the congregation attentive and interesting; so that I had great satisfaction in addressing them. The reader at this place, Mr. Allan, is a man of respectable character. The Newfoundland Society's School is remarkably well taught by Mr. and Mrs. Martin, who are valuable acquisitions to this settlement. She was confirmed, and both are constant at church and sacrament. The school contains thirty-three girls and twenty-three boys. The attendance on Sunday is larger, and then Mr. Allan assists; but the Roman Catholics seem unwilling to send their children at any time. This place has never had a respectable school before; and the value of Mr. Martin is sensibly felt. Mr. Laugharne had much reason to be gratified with the evident good feeling of his people, both here and at Torbay. We did not return to our ship until after eight o'clock.

/93/ Friday, July 13th. We sailed in the Orestes for Ferryland, forty miles, at a very early hour; but being baffled with light winds, we made but slow progress. An opportunity was afforded us for examining a natural curiosity on the shore, which is rarely visited, although it is a mark which guides all vessels on this part of the coast. It is called the Water-spout. It is formed by a small natural shaft, from the surface of the ground to a cave beneath. The sea is forced into the cave, and with such violence as to throw the water or vapour through the shaft, many feet into the air; sometimes to a great height, when the wind is violent and the sea rough. We approached it in a boat, and had a fine view of the cave; but the surf was so great, that Captain Jones was hurt in landing, and no one else attempted it. The aperture above is not twelve inches in diameter, but the rush of the vapour is violent, and the noise of the sea in the cave tremendous. In the evening a thick fog compelled us to stand out to sea, under easy sail, for the night.

Saturday, 14th. We found ourselves to windward of Ferryland; and passing it soon after daylight, we anchored in Capelin Bay, which is very near it, and forms a safe harbour. Mr. Blackman, the Society's Missionary, came on board, and attended me to the shore, where the principal persons were soon introduced to me. The church is merely a shell; but measures were taken for its completion, as the old church has been allowed to decay, until scarcely a vestige remains. The scenery is interesting, and there is much pasture and meadow in the neighbourhood. More than a century ago, Lord Baltimore, heir to the Grantee of the province of Avalon, which includes Ferryland, passed a winter here, on his way to Maryland, and lived in a cellar, whose ruins remain, because he fancied he could not be warm above the surface of the ground. In this neighbourhood is the Isle of Bays, which is said to be the only cultivated spot in Newfoundland that has never been in the hands of the French. It once withstood an arduous siege, and repelled its assailants.

The religious zeal of this place requires to be roused; but /94/ there are many respectable inhabitants here, from whom much may be expected. There is great need of a school, as it does not appear that any of respectability has ever been attempted. A large portion of the inhabitants are Roman Catholics, and have a resident priest. Nearly thirty years ago, more than 50 pounds a-year were contributed by the people to assist the comfortable support of the Society's Missionary; and I urged this fact, to provoke similar exertion and liberality now.

This place was once the rendezvous of East India ships that wanted convoy; and in the last war 200 sail, from all the ports in these colonies, have been assembled at one time for the same object. The place was once visited by Lord Nelson.

Sunday, July 15th. By the assistance of a carpenter's crew, and flags from the Orestes, the church was made very comfortable for temporary use, and received a larger congregation than could have been elsewhere accommodated. I preached a preparatory sermon for confirmation, and afterwards consecrated two burial-grounds. In the afternoon I confirmed thirty-six persons, and earnestly endeavoured to animate the people to an increase of zeal and devotion. The ship was out of the harbour when the service was finished. I joined her in a boat that was sent for me, and we proceeded on our return to St. John's. There are several settlements in the neighbourhood of Ferryland, to which the occasional visits of a missionary would be very useful. Between this place and St. John's is the Bay of Bulls, a populous place, where almost all the inhabitants, some years ago, were Protestants. The church was burned by Admiral Rickery in the late war, and the mission was abandoned. I was informed, that in a time of more than ordinary sickness the services of a clergyman were particularly desired; but as no clergyman of the Church could be found to attend to the people, a very serious impression was made by a diligent priest of the Romish Church. His labours were soon followed by a visit from the Roman Catholic Bishop, and the people have ever since adhered to that communion.

/95/ Monday, July 16th. The night was foggy, but the sea smooth, and we glided along under easy sail. Early in the morning, there was a little opening of the fog for a few minutes, which enabled us to enter the harbour of St. John's. Having now received all the assistance which the Orestes could afford me, I took up my abode at Mr. Dunscomb's, to await the arrival of the Alligator. I could not take leave of Captain Jones, without expressing my warmest thanks for his unbounded attention. He considered all my objects as parts of his own duty; and by unwearied endeavours, aided by a fleet vessel, enabled me to accomplish, in little more than six weeks, what, under the circumstances, might have occupied a summer. The ship had sailed with me nearly three thousand miles, and, at times, through difficult and dangerous navigation.

The Alligator had met with some disasters in the river St. Laurence, which led me to apprehend she would be delayed; and as I was under engagement to have an ordination at Halifax, in September, and Sir Thomas Cochrane was very desirous that I should visit Placentia Bay, I was obliged reluctantly to change my arrangements, and postpone my visit to the Bay of Chaleurs. I had sent for Mr. Bullock to attend me to Placentia, and he arrived at St. John's on Thursday, the 19th of July.

Sunday 22d. I preached to a large congregation at St. John's in the morning, and in the afternoon rode to Portugal Cove, in Conception Bay (ten miles), where I again preached to very attentive hearers, and afterwards confirmed sixty-eight persons. A woman, whose residence was at Carboneer, was prevented from being confirmed there, as she had been called away to attend a dying father. Having relations at Petty Harbour, which is nearly fifty miles from Carboneer, she resolved upon going thither for confirmation; but owing to the unfavourable winds, she was a day too late. She then came to St. John's, and followed me to Portugal Cove, where she was now confirmed, with deep seriousness and devotion. The church here is the joint property of /96/ Churchmen and Methodists, and therefore could not be consecrated. Here, as in all places where a school has been established for any time, the good effect was prominent; and, as many can read, there were many prayer-books in use during the service.

The remainder of my time, while I was waiting for the arrival of the Alligator, was chiefly occupied in such intercourse at St. John's as was best calculated to extend my acquaintance with the island.

Friday, July 27th. Sir Thomas Cochrane returned from his visits to the Southern bays, where he had been greatly interrupted and delayed by constant fog. His Excellency's return greatly increased my means for obtaining useful information.

Sunday, 29th. I preached both morning and afternoon to crowded congregations at St. John's.

Monday, 30th. The Alligator forced her way through a very thick fog, in which we had been enveloped for many days, and anchored in the harbour without being seen by any one.

Friday, August 3d. This being the first day of favourable weather for sailing, I parted from the Governor and many kind and attentive friends, with mutual regret; embarked on board the Alligator, with the Rev. Mr. Bullock, under salutes, and we were soon out of the harbour, but made little progress.

Saturday, 4th. The weather was such as to prevent our landing at any place where our services could be useful.

Sunday, 5th. We sailed up St. Mary's Bay, and passed the village of St. Mary's in the afternoon. Mr. Bullock landed, assembled the few Protestants in the place, and officiated; after which he followed the ship to her anchorage, three miles. In a population of 500, only sixteen Protestants were to be found here, and these had not been visited by any clergyman for twenty-seven years. I was informed that not more than five persons here can write their names; and their whole moral condition was represented /97/ to me as deplorable. The children are chiefly taken to St. John's for baptism. The priest from Ferryland makes an annual visit.

Monday, August 6th. We had intended to remain here this day, in which case I promised to land at St. Mary's; but as Placentia was our chief object, and the weather was very uncertain, Captain Canning thought it desirable to improve a little fair wind at daylight, when the anchor was accordingly weighed. We did not get out of St. Mary's bay until the evening, when a strong breeze enabled us to pass Point Lance, and sail under the fine cliffs, and along the rocky shore of Cape St. Mary. As the night came on, the gale increased, the moon was obscured, and a thick fog was gathering. We were now in the dangerous Bay of Placentia, and without a pilot. We could not get out to sea, against a violent wind, and to remain in the bay was very perilous. Under these circumstances Captain Canning determined upon attempting the harbour of Placentia, taking in all sail, and using every precaution. Owing to the imperfection of the charts, the ship struck upon the rocky bar of Cape Verd, a little before midnight, and as it was impossible to force her over it, we remained striking violently for five hours. The ship lost the whole of her false keel, and a part of the main keel, which floated alongside; but as she is a remarkably strong vessel, and was in some measure protected from the violence of the sea by Cape Verd, she sustained no other material damage, though she struck so hard with every sea, that we were glad to support ourselves by taking firm hold of the beams. She happily floated at high water, a little before five o'clock, and soon afterwards was anchored in the outer harbour of Placentia. In less than two hours the wind shifted only a few points, when the sea broke so violently on the bar where the ship had grounded, that she must have gone to pieces had she not providentially floated before the change of wind. Every thing was done in the ship with great coolness and skill, which prevented any confusion, though the storm was violent, and the rain fell in torrents. Two convicts on board were greatly alarmed, and /98/ earnestly begged to have their irons loosed: but their guard very coolly replied, he would knock them off in good time, when he should perceive the ship going to pieces.

Tuesday, August 7th. The weather improved towards noon, though the wind was still high. We rowed two miles to Old Placentia, once the seat of government, both French and English. I had no hope of collecting a congregation, and landed rather to gratify my curiosity, and to visit the ruins of ancient fortifications. I was, however, met upon the shore by several persons, who informed me my visit had been anxiously expected by a few members of the Church, who were desirous of confirmation. I was happy to gratify their wishes, although, in a population now reduced nearly to 500, there are not many more than thirty Protestants at the present time. Notice for service was soon circulated, for the first time in twenty-one years. We assembled at the church, which appears to have been particularly neat, but is now so much in ruin that Sir Thomas Cochrane, in his late visit, considered its repair impossible. I procured the best carpenters in the place, had it thoroughly examined, and ascertained that it might be repaired effectually for less than 100 pounds. The people were rejoiced; readily promised their contributions; and the work is likely to be speedily accomplished. Several Roman Catholics will contribute, as all have a local attachment which makes them desirous to preserve every thing in the place from further decay. One Roman Catholic gentleman promised to contribute as large a sum as any Protestant would subscribe, which will oblige him to pay 10 pounds. I found, in excellent order, a very beautiful service of plate, which was presented to this church about the year 1787 or 1788, by His Royal Highness the Lord High Admiral, when he was at Placentia, where His Royal Highness's beneficence is remembered with gratitude and respect. The church books are also splendid. These were the gift of a respectable merchant, the late Mr. Saunders. Several attempts had been made for the removal of the books and plate to St. John's, but the people were greatly gratified upon receiving my assurance that I would not be /99/ instrumental to such an act. The Roman Catholics joined in resistance to the measure, when it was attempted. Mr. Bullock made as much preparation as the time would permit, and divine service commenced at four o'clock in the afternoon. Ten persons, whose manner was particularly devout, were confirmed, and I endeavoured to address them in a manner adapted to their peculiar condition. The beginning of the first lesson, Jeremiah xlii, was remarkably applicable to this small remnant of the Church, and afforded topics for my address to them. Six persons were very desirous of receiving the Lord's Supper, and I could not hesitate in administering it to their comfort and my own. If the employments of this day have had a shade cast upon them by sincere regret for the destitute condition of the Church in this place, which once had a respectable congregation, they have also awakened an encouraging hope that, by God's blessing, there may, at no distant period, be a happy restoration.

Mr. Bullock was so unwell that I was obliged to leave him on shore, as the water was still very rough, and I did not reach the ship for dinner until nearly ten at night.

Wednesday, August 8th. As soon as Mr. Bullock could come to me, with Mr. M'Gill, who kindly offered to conduct us, we set out in a boat for Little Placentia, distant by water twelve miles, where we were very kindly received by Mr. Tucker's family, who has the chief management of the fishery and commerce here. Though chiefly brought up among Dissenters in England, he expressed an anxious wish to have a clergyman of the Church, whose services, he is satisfied, might be a great blessing to this part of Newfoundland. He was delighted to find his daughters desirous of confirmation, and well prepared for it, and his wife anxious to partake of the holy communion, for which no opportunity had ever been afforded in this place until now. The population is about 500, who are, with few exceptions, of the Church of Rome; but in the neighbouring harbours and islands there are between 100 and 200 persons who still retain their affection for the Church, besides many others, who, having joined the Romish Communion, because all hope of spiritual /100/ instruction in their own was lost, may not be unwilling to return to their first principles. I preached as plainly as I could to about fifty or sixty persons, chiefly Roman Catholics, but owing to the impossibility of giving timely notice, only three persons were ready for confirmation. The devotion of these was highly exemplary. Mr. Tucker engaged to superintend a Sunday-school, for all denominations, and to read on that day to all who will attend him. Schools are greatly wanted at both Placentias. Mr. Tucker's principals, the house of Neave and Penny at Poole, are Quakers, but so strongly impressed with the necessity for schools here, that they would probably contribute very liberally to any attempt for their establishment. I left this place with favourable impressions, and much hope that, with the blessing of God, its prospects may brighten. Mr. Tucker is to propose a subscription for the erection of a small church. We sent away our own boat, as the sea had become rough, and were conveyed by Mr. Tucker two miles up an arm of the sea, from whence a very delightful walk of four miles brought us abreast of our ship, one of whose boats was sent for us immediately. In walking along the shore, we picked up many fragments of the Alligator's keel, which could not be mistaken, as they were of teak wood.

Thursday, August 9th. The ship was delayed by headwind and fog. I landed on Cape Verd, whose owner has been on it seventy years, and holds a French grant for its title. Mr. Bullock assembled a small but serious congregation at Old or Great Placentia, and gave them service.

Friday, 10th. A thick fog. Mr. Bullock officiated again to a larger congregation than met him yesterday. I remained on board to write very particularly respecting the religious affairs of Newfoundland, to Sir Thomas Cochrane.

Saturday, 11th. The fog broke away about nine, and the ship was quickly under sail in hope of reaching Burin, or some harbour on the western shore of the Bay, where our services might be useful on Sunday, but the wind failed, and no effort could effect this.

Sunday, 12th. Calm and fog, which prevented any progress /101/ during the day. In the evening the fog was dispersed, and with the help of sweeps, and boats towing the ship, she was anchored, not without some risk of being again on shore, at Great Burin, some time after dark. Mr. Bullock landed immediately to make arrangements for early service on Monday, but discovered that Little Burin would be the most desirable place to hold a confirmation, of which it would be impossible to give sufficient notice, unless it were delayed till Tuesday, which was accordingly determined upon.

Monday, August 13th. A north-east gale, with violent rain, made us very thankful to be in harbour. The weather improved in the afternoon, when Mr. Bullock assembled about 100 persons, to whom he fully explained the nature and obligations of confirmation. He afterwards proceeded to Ship Cove, in Little Burin, for the same purpose, but could not return at night.

Tuesday, 14th. A very squally day; but as I was unwilling to disappoint those who expected me at Ship Cove, I set out in a boat at eight o'clock, but was very nearly overset by a squall, before I had proceeded a mile. About seventy persons were assembled in the court-house, which was very convenient for service, and of these, thirty-six were confirmed, after I had addressed them. There is a Methodist teacher at this place, who very politely offered me the use of his meeting-house, a building which was originally erected on a very singular plan for a church and parsonage; but being overwhelmed with debt it was sold for some trifling sum, after the removal of Mr. Grantham, the Society's Missionary here some years ago, and so passed into the hands of the Methodists. A school is greatly wanted at each of the two Burins. The principal inhabitants undertook to make some efforts among themselves to assist in their establishment, and for the erection of a church. The people here, when the success of the fishery was most extraordinary, very preposterously engaged to the Society to pay 300 pounds a year to a Missionary! When the Rev. Mr. Grantham was sent hither, he brought the engagement with him, and when it totally failed he left them in great /102/ disappointment. They might as easily have paid 3000 pounds as 300 pounds, or rather both sums were alike impossible. Soon after our return to the ship, Mr. Bullock left us in a cutter which Sir Thomas Cochrane had very kindly sent with us, to secure his comfortable return to St. John's. His services had always been zealous and valuable, and called for the sincere expression of my thanks.

Wednesday, August 15th. We got out of the harbour with great difficulty, and sailed for Halifax. The winds were constantly baffling, and the voyage was tedious, but without any circumstances of much interest. We anchored one windy night under the Isle of Little Miquelon, a French fishing station, but without settled inhabitants; and another in Country Harbour on the coast of Nova Scotia for protection from a storm. The French Islands St. Pierre and Miquelon employ 500 sail of vessels in their fishery, and about 8000 men, most of whom come from France for the fishing season, and return in the autumn. They are chiefly from Normandy, and Roman Catholics.

Friday, August 24th. I landed safely at Halifax, with much thankfulness to God, after an absence of three months, during which, with constant fatigue and occasional peril, I had traversed nearly 5000 miles. I had been enabled to preach thirty-two times, to consecrate eighteen churches and twenty burial-grounds, and to confirm 2365 persons at twenty-seven several confirmations, in the discharge of which duties I had much comfort and encouragement, for which I humbly desire to be duly thankful to the Author of every mercy.

There are peculiar circumstances at Newfoundland, which increase the difficulties of providing for the instruction of the people. Their settlements are greatly scattered; always difficult of access, and often inaccessible. During the short fishing season every one is wholly engaged in the fishery, on which they depend for support; and in the winter it is a frequent practice to remove to the forest for shelter, fuel, and employment in preparing lumber. These difficulties however may be successfully met by becoming earnestness /103/ and zeal. Sometimes it will be desirable for the schoolmasters to move with the people, and tilt (as it is called) in the woods. The clergymen must also be ready, with a pure missionary spirit, to visit occasionally these temporary lodgements in the forest; and during the busiest seasons they will always find the general inclination of the people leaning towards the Church. Pressed as they often are by the hurry of the fishing season, they will always be ready for instruction even then, on the Sabbath, which is seldom violated by Protestants here. But a personal intercourse must be kept up, through every difficulty, between the clergy and all the members of their flocks, or their influence will not be such as it ought to be. In the course of my visits through the island, I met with a Roman Catholic priest who was uncommonly popular, and had great influence through an extensive circuit. Although he appeared to be a good humoured person, I was rather surprised at the very great regard he had so universally secured, until I ascertained that it was his habit to pass a day and a night with every family of his flock, however poor the accommodation they could afford him. A Missionary without missionary zeal can do nothing here. He will often have formidable difficulties to contend with; but if he be earnest in the great cause in which he is embarked, he will not be left without much comfort and encouragement in his arduous course. A large increase of the clergy and schoolmasters is immediately required, and under right direction, and with a blessing upon their labours, their services cannot fail to be of the highest value. The means for defraying the necessary expense, would not long be withheld by those who have power to supply them, if they could witness the great spiritual wants, and the worthiness of the objects which require their benevolent regard and assistance. His Excellency the Governor has promised his endeavours to provide for the conveyance of a clergyman with the judges on their circuit, which will enable him to visit several remote settlements, that would otherwise be entirely beyond his reach. It will also be very desirable to authorize the Archdeacon, in whose /104/ prudence unbounded confidence may be placed, to provide for the actual expenses of missionary visits to various places that are now entirely neglected, as often as he can prevail with missionaries to make these visits of Christian love. In all cases they must be accomplished by water, and never without some difficulty and personal risk.

I have only to commend the whole work to the great Shepherd of the Christian Fold, and earnestly implore his blessing upon every endeavour to promote the salvation of his numerous flock.

(E-text furnished by Dr. Hans Rollmann; typed by Ms. Heather Russell;htmlized by Dr. Hans Rollmann)


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