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Week 18 - the port of Rio

[ 19th of June 1836 to 25th of June 1836 ]
[ View related 'school content': Week 18: Life Onboard ]
[ View related 'school content': Week 18 - the port of Rio ]

This week we see the Cygnet in Rio Harbour, where it has called to replenish stores and take on fresh provisions.  From the terse comments in Finniss‘ diary we are led to believe that the decision to call at Rio was taken by Kingston, perhaps acting on John Morphett’s advice, but against the wishes of the captain, and, by implication, the advice of Finniss himself.  The simmering tension between these two men probably stems from their earlier rivalry for the post of deputy surveyor,  but if we are to believe Finniss, Kingston also quarrels continuously with Captain Lipson and with others.  And the disagreements are reflected in petty squabbles between their servants.  None of this bodes well for good working relationships once they arrive in South Australia.

On the Duke of York meanwhile, Captain Morgan acts as doctor to a member of his crew who has a stomach complaint, but his decision to withhold the sailor’s rum ration is not appreciated.

Sugar Loaf Mountain, Rio de Janeiro, 1838.


Read on for a week of high drama.  The crew mutinies on the Cygnet, tragedy strikes on the John Pirie, and the Africaine begins its journey with a large body of emigrants on board.

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Image credit: Corcovardo, Rio, circa 1838. Owen Stanley. Image courtesy of National Library of Australia

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