Posts Tagged ‘smallpox’

SMALLPOX – A LETHAL WEAPON- BOSTON 1775; ROBERT ROSS & DAVID COLLINS – SYDNEY 1789; MAJOR ROSS & CAPTAIN COLLINS

Wednesday, March 21st, 2018

‘From time to time throughout history, peoples and governments around the world have used micro-organisms as efficient and cost-effective weapons of mass destruction’. Professor Dorothy H. Crawford, The Invisible Enemy, Edinburgh University Press, 2000.

BOSTON

In 1763, in the earliest recorded deliberate release of a virus, Sir Jeffrey Amherst, British Commander-in-Chief in North America, authorized the distribution of smallpox-contaminated blankets to native Americans who were harassing European settlers around the garrison at Fort Pitt in Pennsylvania’. Crawford. op. cit.

1756-1763: During the British North American Indian theatre of the (Seven Years War) General Thomas Gage served as second-in-command to General Amherst.

‘We gave them two Blankets and an Handkerchief out of the Small Pox Hospital, I hope it will have the desired effect’. Amherst, cited Professor Elizabeth A. Fenn, Pox Americana, The Great Smallpox Epidemic of 1775-82, 2001

General Gage was implicated in the distribution of blankets seeded with smallpox to local Indian tribes at Fort Pitt now Pittsburgh.

“This act had the sanction of an impressive array of British officers, including Sir Jeffery Amherst, commander in chief at the time, and General Thomas Gage, who replaced Amherst and signed off on reimbursements for the “Sundries” used ” to convoy the Smallpox to the Indians”. Fenn. op. cit.

America – 1718-1775: Convict transportation: Britain between 1718 and 1775 exported approximately fifty thousand (50,000) convicted criminals to America.

Tied twice yearly to Assize and County Court Sittings some convicts – reprieved death on condition of exile ‘from the realm’were sentenced ‘for transportation to America’.

There they were sold at regular ‘slave scrambles’ to plantation owners. Most were unskilled men who served their sentence labouring alongside African slaves shipped to America to work the tobacco and cotton fields.

Fewer women prisoners were transported and most were purchased as house-servants.

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SMALLPOX – A BIOLOGICAL WEAPON OF MASS DESTRUCTION – 1789

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

‘The body of the [Aboriginal] woman showed that famine, superadded to disease, had occasioned her deathIt is true, that our surgeons had brought out variolous (smallpox) matter in bottles’. Marine Captain Watkin Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. L.F. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, Sydney, 1961

Botany Bay – January 1788: At 2.15pm on 18 January 1788 HMS Supply, first of a large armed expeditionary force of eleven (11) ships, known in Britain and Australia as the ‘First Fleet’ with an overwhelmingly  male complement of 1500 souls (1300 men, 221 women) anchored in the entrance to Botany Bay, New Holland known now as Australia.

Governor Phillip estimated local Aboriginals numbered 1500. As the population had doubled ‘the main battle was about having enough to eat’. The Story of Australia, Don Watson 1984.

‘From time to time throughout history, peoples and governments around the world have used micro-organisms as efficient and cost-effective weapons of mass destruction’. Professor Dorothy H. Crawford, The Invisible Enemy, Edinburgh University Press, 2000

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JOSEPH JEFFERIES – FROM NEW YORK TO RIO AND OLD SYDNEY TOWN: ONE – THEN THERE WAS NONE

Monday, November 14th, 2016

1789 – April, Sydney: ‘Not one case of the disorder occurred among the white people either afloat or on shore although there were several children in the settlement; but a North American Indian…took the disease and died’. Samuel Bennett, Australian Discovery and Colonisation, Vol. 1 to 1800, Facsimile edition, 1981

Smallpox inoculation, using either pus or dried scab-matter was widespread in the British army of the eighteenth century. It served a dual purpose; to protect – to destroy.

‘It is true our surgeons had brought out variolous matter in bottles’. Marine Watkin Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. F.L. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, 1961

1787 – August, Brazil: When in August – September that year the ‘First Fleet’ en-route to Botany Bay put into Rio de Janeiro for supplies in Joseph Jefferies joined the crew of HMS Supply.

A North American Indian Jefferies was born on New York’s Staten Island.  In July 1776 Admiral Richard Howe RN commander of the Royal Navy’s ‘North American Station’ arrived there.

It is said during America’s Revolutionary War of Independence (1775-1783)  ‘the largest fleet in British naval history’ just on four hundred (400) ships were docked at Staten Island.

1789 – April, Sydney: ‘A smallpox epidemic struck the Aboriginal population around Sydney. Inexplicably the epidemic did not affect the Europeans, but [Governor] Phillip estimated that it resulted in the death of 50% of the local Aboriginal community’. People of Australia, Macquarie Series, Ed. Bryce Fraser, 1998.

The young adventurer Joseph Jefferies died of smallpox at Sydney on or about the 10th of May 1789.

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SMALLPOX SYDNEY 1789 – A VERY CONVENIENT THEORY – IT WAS THE MACASSANS STUPID

Monday, January 25th, 2016

1788 -Sydney Cove, July: ‘Yesterday twenty [20] of the natives came down to the beach, each armed with a number of spears, and seized on a good part of the fish caught in the seine [trawling nets]…several stood at a small distance with their spears poised ready to throw them if any resistance was made’. Governor Arthur Phillip to Under-Secretary Evan Nepean, July 10, 1788, Frank Murcott Bladen, Historical Records of New South Wales

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‘They [Aborigines] are not pleased with our remaining amongst them, as they see we deprive them of fish, which is almost their only support’ . Governor  Philip to Evan  Nepean, September 1788  

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‘[1789] Our impatience of news from Europe strongly marked the commencement of the year. From the intelligence of our friends and connections we had been entirely cut off, no communication whatever having passed with our native country since the 13th of May 1787, the day of our departure from Portsmouth.’ Marine Captain Watkin Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. L.F. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, 1961

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‘1789] An extraordinary calamity was now observed among the natives…pustules similar to those  occasioned by smallpox were thickly spread on the bodies but how a disease, to which our former observations had led us to believe them strangers could have introduced itself, and have spread so widely, seems inexplicable’. Tench. ibid.     

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By a strange coincidence, smallpox reached Port Jackson at about the same time as the First Fleet’. Cassandra Pybus, Black Founders, UNSW Press, 2006 

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‘You cannot overate the solicitude of H.M. Government on the subject of the Aborigines of New Holland. It is impossible to contemplate the condition or the prospects of that unfortunate race without the deepest commiseration. Still it is impossible that the government should forget that the original aggression was ours’.  Lord John Russell to Sir George Gipps, 21 December 1838, Historical Records of Australia, Series, Vol. XX.

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ARTHUR PHILLIP AND “RULE 303”

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

1790 – 11 December, Sydney Cove: ‘Put ten [10] to death…bring in the heads of the slain…bring away two [2] prisoners…I am resolved to execute the prisoners…in the most public and exemplary manner’. General Orders, Governor Arthur Phillip RN to Marine Captain Watkin Tench. Cited, Captain Watkin Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. F.L. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, 1961

1889 – April 3, United Kingdom: Judicial Committee of the Privy Council; Lord Watson, Lord Fitzgerald, Lord Hobhouse, Lord MacNaghton, Sir William Grove, Cooper V Stuart [1889] 14 AC ruled; ‘it [New South Wales] was peacefully annexed to the British Dominion’.

1790 – December: ‘Military and police raids against dissenting Aboriginal groups lasted from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries…These raids had commenced by December 1790’. Professor Bruce Kercher, History of Law in Australia, Allen and Unwin, 1995

Australia’s First Peoples can, with laser accuracy, plot their near annihilation from the raids of December 1790. ‘as if the invasion of their land would call for any other response but armed resistance’. Dr Peter Stanley, The Remote Garrison, The British Army in Australia 1788-1870, Kangaroo Press, 1986

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SMALLPOX – DEAD ABORIGINES DON’T EAT – STARVATION & SMALLPOX – JANUARY 1788 TO JUNE 1790

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

‘The body of the [Aboriginal] woman showed that famine, superadded to disease, had occasioned her death. But how a disease to which our former observations had led us to suppose them strangers could at once have introduced itself, and have spread so widely seems inexplicable’. Marine Captain Watkin Tench, Sydney’s First Four Years, ed. L.F. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, Sydney 1961

Portsmouth – 1787, May 13: A large expeditionary force, eleven (11) ships commanded by Captain Arthur Phillip RN, sailed from England to invade the island continent of New Holland. See: Apollo II, Fly Me To The Moon

Botany Bay – 1788, January 20: Within thirty-six (36) hours between 8-20 January the ships of the  ‘First Fleet’ were at anchor in Botany Bay, New Holland, now Australia.

HMS Supply first to arrive immediately played out her ‘seine’ trawling nets.

‘While the seine was hauling some of them [Aborigines] were present…No sooner were the fish out of the water than they began to lay hold of them as if they had a right to them, or that they were their own’. Dr John White, Chief Medical Officer, First Fleet Journal, Oxford City Press, 2011

Port Jackson – 21 January: Taking Captain Cook’s 1770 charts Phillip accompanied by officers and surveyors set off in three (3) ship’s long-boats hoping to find a more defensible site.

Sydney Cove: That afternoon they sighted the towering headlands of Cook’s Port Jackson’. Rowing through into a vast harbour Phillip settled on a protected deep-water cove naming it for the Home Secretary Lord Sydney.

Botany Bay – 23 January: ‘The boat[s] returned on the evening of the 23d…it was determined the evacuation of Botany Bay should commence the next morning.

24 January: ‘I [Tench] rose at the first dawn… when the cry of “another sail” struck on my astonished ear’. Tench. ibid.

Two (2) French ships, La Boussole and L’Astrolabe, commanded by Jean-Francois La Perouse, appeared off the entrance to the bay. HMS Sirius’ deck- mounted cannon forced La Perouse back out into raging seas.

25 January: The weather kept Captain Phillip inside Botany Bay until the afternoon of the 25th January. Then aboard HMS Supply he quit Botany Bay and before dark Supply dropped anchor in Sydney Cove.

26 January – Sydney Cove: Next morning at first light Phillip landed with a detachment of marines. A flagstaff was built and the Union Jack raised. By nightfall the remaining English ships were riding alongside Supply. See: Australia Britain by a Short Half-Head – Captain Arthur Phillip & Comte Jean- Francois La Perouse

‘Owing to the multiplicity of pressing business necessary to be performed immediately after landing, it was found impossible to read the public commissions and take possession of the colony in form, until the 7th of February ‘. Tench. ibid.

What to do about La Perouse was without doubt the most ‘pressing business’.

Governor Phillip’s solution was extraordinary. Drop everything and occupy an uninhabited mere dot of an island that, in 1774 Captain James Cook on his second Pacific voyage, had named Norfolk Island.

To stymie the French on 31st January 1788, Phillip advised Lieutenant Phillip Gidley King RN, his closest friend and trusted ally, he was t be sent there to establish an even more isolated ‘Robinson Crusoe’ settlement there.

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6 February, Sydney: At the end of the first week of February 1788 the fleet’s two hundred and twenty-one (221) women and their children were rowed ashore.

7 February, Sydney: The following day, with all the ‘pomp and circumstance of glorious war‘, Governor Phillip’s commissions were read.

Without consent of its First Peoples or entering into treaty them,in the name of King George III,Britain claimed ‘Sovereignty’ over New Holland ‘from Cape York in the most northern extremity….and adjacent islands….to South Cape’.

14 February, Norfolk Island:  A week later just on dusk HMS Supply slipped out through Sydney Heads and disappeared from view. See: Asleep In The Deep

10 March, Botany Bay: La Boussole and L’Astrolabe sailed for home never to be seen again.

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‘Before leaving Botany Bay [25 January] Phillip had messages painted on the rocks of Bare Island near which the Fleet had been moored, to guide the ships which Phillip believed were following closely from England, around to Sydney Cove’. Bruce Mitchell, The Australian Story and Its Background, Cheshire Press, 1965

But when no ships arrived it became clear white survival would depend on appropriating foods, especially fish, that for millennia had sustained local Aboriginal families. Abandoned and Left to Starve January 1788 – June 1790

‘Our customary method was to leave Sydney Cove about four in the afternoon and go down the harbour and fish all night from one cove to another. We made 23 hauls of the seine in one night’. Jacob Nagle, The Nagle Journal 1775 to 1841, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, New York ed. John C. Dann, 1988

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AN EVACUATION – SAVING LIEUTENANT WILLIAM COLLINS

Monday, February 9th, 2009

‘It is probable the ships’ company will be on salt provisions for some months after they arrive on the coast of New South Wales, [I] will be glad of two hundred pounds [91kg]of portable soup in addition to fifty pounds [23kg] already supply’d. Arthur Phillip to Admiralty, 22nd March 1787, Historical Records of New South Wales.

‘Portable soup’ a dried concoction made from; ‘all the offals of oxen killed in London for the use of  the navy’ was capable of re-constitution.

1787 – 13 May, Portsmouth: Led by flagship HMS Sirius a large armed squadron of eleven (11) ships commanded by Captain Arthur Phillip RN with a complement of 1500 souls, known in Britain and Australia as the ‘First Fleet’, sailed from England to Botany Bay on the south eastern coast of ‘New South Wales’ in mid May 1787.

1788 – 18/20 January, Botany Bay: After eight (8) months voyaging via Tenerife, Rio de Janeiro and Cape Town, within thirty-six (36) hours between 18-20 January, the entire English Fleet were riding at anchor inside Botany Bay.

1788 – 24 January, Botany Bay: La Boussole and L’Astrolabe, two (2) French ships commanded by Comte Jean- Francois La Perouse appeared in the entrance to the bay. The French battling high winds and rolling seas, sailed south to shelter from the storm and seek safety from Sirius’s guns. See: Eyes Wide Shut – A Military Campaign and Arthur Phillip

‘Phillip ordered a party to be sent [there] Point Sutherland to hoist English colours. He also stipulated that the move to Port Jackson be kept secret’. John Moore, The First Fleet Marines 1786-1792, Queensland University Press, 1987

1788 – 25 January, Port Jackson: Captain Phillip aboard HMS Supply quit Botany Bay ordering the fleet follow when bad weather abated.

By 7 pm that evening Supply anchored in Sydney Cove situated deep within Port Jackson. Guarded by towering headlands ‘here’ Phillip reported to London ‘a thousand Ship of Sail of the Line may ride in the most perfect Security’. Historical Records of New South Wales

1788 – 26 January, Sydney Cove: At first light –  26 January 1788 – marines rowed Captain Phillip ashore a flagpole was erected and ‘English Colours’  – the Union Jack – was hoisted to signify that, in the race for New Holland England had beaten France her arch-enemy and shattered the long-held ambition of the Bourbon Kings to dominate the Indian and Southern Oceans. See: Britain by a Short Half-Head Captain Arthur Phillip & Comte Jean-Francoise La Perouse

‘When Phillip planted the flag at Sydney Cove in 1788 he was not claiming the land away from the aboriginal people but to make sure the French did not to make the claim first’. Professor Larissa Behrendt,The Honest History Book, ed. David Stephens & Alison Broinowski, New South Publishing, 2017

By night-fall – 26 January – the remaining English ships were anchored alongside HMS Supply.

1788 – 7 February, Sydney Cove: Nigh on two (2) weeks later – 7 February –  after back-breaking toil forced from the convicts, Governor Phillip with all the ‘pomp and circumstance of glorious war’, without consent of its Peoples or entering into treaty with them as required by international law where territory was inhabited, claimed British sovereignty over New Holland in the name of His Majesty King George III of England.

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