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· PROVINCIAL OCCURRENCES . IN THE COUNTIES OF ENGLAND, AND IN WALES, SCOTLAND,
LONDON. Expedition of Captain Ross - The following letter from Captain Ross to the Secre. tary of the Admiralty, details the principal occurrences of his voyage; and will be found highly interesting to all who can admire enterprising courage and perseverance:
On board the Isabella, of Hull, Baffin's Bay, Sept. 1833. · Sir,-Knowing how deeply my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty are interested in the advancement of nautical knowledge, and particularly in the improvement of geography, I have to acquaint you, for the information of their Lordships, that the expedition, the main object of which is to solve, if possible, the question of a north-west passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, particularly by Prince Regent's Inlet, and which sailed from England in May, 1829, notwithstanding the loss of the foremast and other intoward circumstances, which obliged the vessel to refit in Greenland, reached the beach on which his Majesty's late ship Fury's stores were landed on the 13th of August.
We found the boats, provisions, &c., in excellent condition, but no vestige of the wreck. After completing in fuel and other necessaries, we sailed on the 14th, and on the following morning rounded Cape Garry, where our new discoveries commenced, and keeping the western shore close on board, ran down the coast in a S.W. and W. course, in from 10 to 20 fathoms, until we had passed the latitude of 72° north in longitude 94° west ; here we found a considerable inlet leading to the westward, the examination of which occupied two days. At this place we were first seriously obstructed by ice, which was now seen to extend from the south cape of the inlet, in a solid mass, round by S. and E. to E.N.E.: owing to this circumstance, the shallowness of the water, the rapidity of the tides, the tempestuous weather, the irregularity of the coast, and the numerous inlets and rocks for which it is remarkable, our progress was no less dangerous than tedious, yet we succeeded in penetrating below the latitude of 70° north in longitude 92° west, where the land, after having carried us as far east as 90°, took a decided westerly direction, while land at the distance of 40 miles to southward was seen extending east and west. At this extreme point our progress was arrested on the 1st of October by an impenetrable barrier of ice. We, however, found an excellent wintering port, which we named Felix Harbour.
Early in January, 1830, we had the good fortune to establish a friendly intercourse with a most interesting consociation of natives, who, being insulated by nature, had never before communicated with strangers; from them we gradually obtained the important information that we had already seen the continent of America, that about 40 miles to the S. W. there were two great seas, one to the west, which was divided from that to the east by a narrow strait or neck of land.
The verification of this intelligence either way, on which our future operations so materially depended, devolved on Commander Ross, who volunteered this service early in April, and, accompanied by one of the mates, and guided by two of the natives, proceeded to the spot, and found that the north land was connected to the south by two ridges of high land, fifteen miles in breadth, but taking into account a chain of fresh-water lakes, which occupied the valleys between, the dry land which actually separates the two oceans is only five miles. This extraordinary isthmus was subsequently visited by myself, when Commander Ross proceeded minutely to survey the sea-coast, to the southward of the isthmus leading to the westward, which he succeeded in tracing to the 99th deg. or to 150 miles of Cape Turnagain of Franklin, to which point the land, after leading him into the 70th degree of north latitude, trended directly: during the same journey he also surveyed 30 miles of the adjacent coast, or that to the north of the isthmus, which, by also taking a westerly direction, formed the termination of the western sea into a gulf. The rest of this season was employed in tracing the sea-coast south of the isthmus leading to the eastward, which was done so as to leave no doubt that it joined, as the natives had previously informed us, to Ockullee, and the land forming Repulse Bay. It was also determined that there was no passage to the westward for 30 miles to the northward of our position.
This summer, like that of 1818, was beautifully fine, but extremely unfavourable
for navigation; and onr object being now to try a more northern latitude, we waited with anxiety for the disruption of the ice, but in vain : our utmost endeavours did not succeed in retracing our steps more than four miles, and it was not until the middle of November that we succeeded in getting the vessel into a place of se. curity, which we named “ Sheriff's Harbour.” I may here mention that we named the newly-discovered continent, to the southward, " Boothia,” as also the isthmus, the peninsula to the north, and the eastern sea, after my worthy friend Felix Booth, Esq., the truly patriotic citizen of London, who, in the most disinterested manner, enabled me to equip this expedition in a superior style.
The last winter was in temperature nearly equal to the mean of what had been experienced on the four preceding voyages, but the winters of 1830 and 1831 set in with a degree of violence hitherto beyond record, the thermometer sunk to 92 degrees below the freezing point, and the average of the year was 10 degrees below the preceding; but, notwithstanding the severity of the summer, we travelled across the country to the west sea by a chain of lakes, 30 miles north of the isthmus, when Commander Ross succeeded in surveying 50 miles more of the coast leading to the N.W., and, by tracing the shore to the northward of our position, it was also fully proved that there could be no passage below the 71st degree.
This autumn we succeeded in getting the vessel only 14 miles to the northward, and as we had not doubled the Eastern Cape, all hope of saving the ship was at an end, and put quite beyond possibility by another very severe winter; and having only provisions to last us to the 1st of June, 1833, dispositions were accordingly made to leave the ship in her present port, which (after her) was named Victory Harbour. Provisions and fuel being carried forward in the spring, we left the ship on the 29th of May, 1832, for Fury Beach, being the only chance left of saving our lives : owing to the very rugged nature of the ice, we were obliged to keep either upon or close to the land, making the circuit of every bay, thus increasing our distance of 200 miles by nearly one-half; and it was not until the 1st of July that we reached the beach, completely exhausted by hunger and fatigue.
A hut was speedily constructed, and the boats, three of which had been washed off the beach, but providentially driven on shore again, were repaired during this month; but the unusual heavy appearance of the ice afforded us no cheering prospect until the 1st of August, when in three boats we reached the ill-fated spot where the Fury was first driven on shore. It was not until the 1st of September that we reached Leopold South Island, now established to be the N.E. point of America, in latitude 73° 56', and longitude 90° west. From the summit of the lofty mountain on the promontory we could see Prince Regent's Inlet, Barrow's Strait, and Lancaster Sound, which presented one impenetrable mass of ice, just as I had seen it in 1818. Here we remained in a state of anxiety and suspense, which may be easier imagined than described. All our attempts to push through were in vain ; at length, being forced, by want of provisions, and the approach of a very severe winter, to return to Fury Beach, where alone there remained wherewith to sustain life, there we arrived on the 7th of October, after a most fatiguing and laborious march, having been obliged to leave our boats at Batty Bay. Our habitation, which consisted of a frame of spars, thirty-two feet by sixteen feet, covered with canvass, was during the month of November enclosed, and the roof covered with snow, from four feet to seven feet thick, which, being saturated with water when the temperature was fifteen degrees below zero, immediately took the consistency of ice, and thus we actually became the inhabitants of an iceberg during one of the most severe winters hitherto recorded. Our sufferings, aggravated by want of bed. ding, clothing, and animal food, need not be dwelt upon. Mr. C. Thomas, the carpenter, was the only man who perished at this beach ; but three others, besides one who had lost his foot, were reduced to the last stage of debility, and only thirteen of our number were able to carry provisions in seven journeys of sixtytwo miles each to Batty Bay.
We left Fury Beach on the 8th of July, carrying with us three sick men, who were unable to walk, and in six days we reached the boats, where the sick daily recovered. Although the spring was mild, it was not until the 15th of August that we had any cheering prospect. A gale from the westward having suddenly opened a lane of water along shore, in two days we reached our former position, and from the mountain we had the satisfaction of seeing clear water almost directly across Prince Regent's Inlet, which we crossed on the 17th, and took shelter from a storm 12 miles to the eastward of Cape York. The next day, when the gale abated, we crossed Admiralty Inlet, and were detained six days on the coast by a strong north-east wind. On the 25th we crossed Navy Board Inlet, and on the
following morning, to our inexpressible joy, we descried a ship in the offing, becalmed, which proved to be the Isabella, of Hull, the same ship which I com. manded in 1818. At noon we reached her, when her enterprising commander, who had in vain searched for us in Prince Regent's Inlet, after giving us three cheers, received us with every demonstration of kindness and hospitality which humanity could dictate. I ought to mention also that Mr. Humphreys, by land. ing me at Possession Bay, and subsequently on the west coast of Baffin's Bay, afforded me an excellent opportunity of concluding my survey, and of verifying my former chart of that coast.
I now have the pleasing duty of calling the attention of their Lordships to the merits of Commander Ross, who was second in the direction of this expedition. The labours of this officer, who had the departments of astronomy, natural history, and surveying, will speak for themselves in language beyond the ability of my pen; but they will be duly appreciated by their Lordships, and the learned bodies of which he is a member, and who are already acquainted with his acquirements.
My steady and faithful friend, Mr. Wm. Thom, of the Royal Navy, who was formerly with me in the Isabella, besides his duty as third in command, took charge of the meteorological journal: to the distribution and economy of provisions, and to his judicious plans and suggestions, must be attributed the uncommon degree of health which our crew enjoyed; and as two out of the three who died in the four years and a half were cut off early in the voyage, by diseases not peculiar to the climate, only one man can be said to have perished. Mr. M'Diarmid, the surgeon, who had been several voyages to these regions, did justice to the high recommendation I received of him; he was successful in every amputation and operation which he performed, and wonderfully so in his treatment of the sick; and I have no hesitation in adding, that he would be an ornament to his Majesty's service.
Commander Ross, Mr. Thom, and myself, have, indeed, been serving without pay; but, in common with the crew, have lost our all, which I regret the more, because it puts it totally out of my power adequately to remunerate my fellow. sufferers, whose case I cannot but recommend for their Lordships' consideration. We have, however, the consolation, that the results of this expedition have been conclusive, and to science highly important, and may be briefly comprehended in the following words :—The discovery of the Gulf of Boothia, the continent and isthmus of Boothia Felix, and a vast number of islands, rivers, and lakes ; the undeniable establishment that the north-east point of America extends to the 74th degree of north latitude ; valuable observations of every kind, but particu. larly on the magnet; and, to crown all, we have had the honour of placing the illustrious name of our most gracious Sovereign William IV. on the true position of the magnetic pole.
I cannot conclude this letter, Sir, without acknowledging the important ad. vantages we obtained from the valuable publications of Sir Edward Parry and Sir John Franklin, and the communications kindly made to us by those distinguished officers before our departure from England. But the glory of this enterprise is entirely due to Him whose divine favour has been most especially manifested towards us; who guided and directed all our steps; who mercifully provided, in what we had deemed a calamity, his effectual means of our preservation; and who, even after the devices and inventions of man had utterly failed, crowned our humble endeavours with complete success. I have, &c.
* JOHN ROSS, Captain R.N. To Captain the Hon. George Elliott, &c.
London Cattle Market and Abattoirs.-That which public bodies, aided by the influence of public opinion, have been unable to effect, has actually been accomplished by a private individual, at his own exclusive cost. This splendid undertaking, pregnant with so many advantages, and so consistent with the philanthropic views of those friends of humanity who have witnessed the cruelties practised towards the unfortunate animals driven, at all hours of the night, into the confined area of Smithfield, and its adjoining streets, is situated in the Lower-road, Islington. The new mart stands upon an area of twenty-two acres, immediately abutting upon the Lower-road. The situation is airy and healthful, and is peculiarly appropriate for the purpose, as it is on the high road from the Northern and Eastern parts of the country, from whence the principal supply of cattle for the London market comes. An immense square is enclosed by high walls, around which are erected a continuous range of slated sheds, supported by no less than 244 plain Doric pillars, under which cattle may at all times be protected from the severity of the weather. These sheds are subdivided into numerous compartments with layers enclosed by oak paling in front, to which the beasts may be either fastened, or allowed to be at liberty, so as to be conveniently subject to the exami. nation of the purchasers. In each lair there is a water-trough, constantly supplied with fresh water, by means of pipes passing under ground, from two immense tanks, which are kept filled by machinery from capacious wells, which have been sunk for the purpose. The average length of each shed is 830 feet, and they are capable of accommodating at least 4000 beasts, which may remain from one market day to the other, or till such times as it may be convenient for the purchasers to remove them,—an advantage wholly impracticable in Smithfield. The open space in the centre is divided into four quadrangles, intersected by wide passages; and in these quadrangles are to be erected sheep pens (the materials for which are all ready), capable of holding 40,000 sheep, so placed as to be approached with perfect facility. Other pens are constructed for calves, pigs, and such animals as are usually brought for sale to the cattle market, upon an obviously simple classi. fication, so as to avoid confusion or irregularity of any sort. Every necessary office for the salesmen and clerks of the market will be erected in a large area in the centre, and the ingress is obtained through a large arched passage under the market. house-a fine substantial building, with appropriate offices on each side for check clerks--and with accommodation up stairs, either for the counting houses of bankers, or public meetings connected with the business of the establishment. Adjoining the market it is intended to erect abattoirs for slaughtering cattle of every description, in which persons may either be accommodated with private slaughter. houses, or have the animals slaughtered under appointed inspectors, at a certain fixed and moderate rate; so that all the expense, inconvenience, and mischief arising from the present mode of driving cattle through the crowded streets on the market day may be avoided.
Re-opening of Mr. Brookes's School of Anatomy. The school of anatomy and surgery which was conducted for many years by the late Joshua Brookes, Esq., F.R.S. has been re-opened by Mr. King. He stated that, with regard to the order of an introductory course on the study of anatomy, he should recommend a similar classification to that which M. de Blainville had adopted for the whole animal kingdom. His (M. Blainville's) divisions were, Zoonomia, which taught the arrangement of animals after their external form ; Zootomia, or the study of their internal structure; Zoobiologia, that of the action of the different organs composing the animal ; Zooethiqua, to which belonged the study of the mode of life and habits of the creature; Zooatria, which comprised the alterations or morbid changes to which the organs are subject, and the means of counteracting them; and, finally, Zoonomica, the science of managing and governing animals so as to obtain the greatest possible amount of good from them. Those which related to the course of instruction to be followed in that school were Zootomia, Zoobiologia, Zooatria ; but the investigation would be confined as much as possible to man.
DEVONSHIRE. A very rich vein of copper has lately been discovered beneath the site occupied by the gasometer at Tavistock. In excavating a portion of the ground, in order to form a cellar for the reception of coal, the workman employed found the soil, a short depth below the surface, so extremely hard as almost to defy his utmost strength and skill in removing it. Upon examination, however, it was found that several of the pieces he had detached were strongly impregnated with copper; and upon still further prosecuting the discovery, a fine rich vein has been detected, which has since yielded not less than 4001. worth of this valuable metal.
LANCASHIRE. Commerce of Liverpool.-The total number of vessels which entered Liverpool and Runcorn, from the 25th of August to the 24th of September, was 986, with a burden of 151,899 tons. Of those which entered Liverpool, 775 were British and 107 foreign. The arrivals from Ireland during the month were 257, from British America 51, from the East Indies 7, from the Isle of Man 16, from Russia 30,
from South America 16, from the United States 33, from the West Indies 26, and coastwise 384. During the same period, only seven vessels entered from France, two from Portugal, one from Spain, three from Belgium, and seven from Sweden. There were two arrivals from the rising colonies in New South Wales.
MIDDLESEX. The revising barristers for the county of Middlesex have decided that trustees in receipt of rents and profits of trust property are entitled to vote in right of such property ; but they were not prepared to say that trustees of chapels, the ministers of which received the pew-rents, had the same right.
NORFOLK. The Norwich Musical Festival has been very successful : the total receipts, for tickets only, amounted to about 45701., exclusive of liberal donations from several persons.
STAFFORDSHIRE. Birmingham Steam-Carriage.--Messrs. Heaton, in a letter to the Editor of the “ Mechanic's Magazine,” gives the following account of the performances of their steam-drag : "On Wednesday morning, Aug. 28, at six minutes past ten o'clock, we set out from our manufactory in Shadwell-street, with a stage-coach, fifteen hundred weight, attached to our steam-drag, with fifteen people thereon, and took up five others on the Bristol road. With this load we arrived at the Bell Inn, Northfield, near seven miles, in fifty-six minutes; stopped there nine minutes for water, and reached the Rose and Crown, at the foot of the hill, eighteen minutes before twelve o'clock; remained there four minutes, and commenced ascending the hill, which is about seven hundred yards long, and rises, on an average, one yard in nine, and in some places one yard in eight. In many places, too, the ground is so soft, that the wheels carried a hill of sand before them of near three inches deep. This hill was ascended by the machine, taking the coach and nine persons to the summit in nine minutes.' We then took up the friends we had taken from Birmingham, with five in addition, and proceeded to the market place in Bromsgrove, and turned the machine and coach round without stopping, and returned back to the Crab Mill Inn, having travelled about fifteen miles, where we arrived twenty-seven minutes before one o'clock. We halted there thirty-five minutes, and set off home. On descending the hill, we thought proper to show our friends, twenty-five in number riding, that the machine was manageable on the most hilly roads, by making a stand-still on the steepest part of the hill. We proceeded on to the Rose and Crown Inn at the foot of the hill, where we halted twenty-five minutes, elated that we had, by ascending and descending one of the worst hills in the kingdom, established the fact that our machine would travel on any road, however bad. We halted again at the Bell Inn, at Northfield, eight minutes, and took three other friends up, and proceeded on to Birmingham, taking up Worcesterstreet, an ascent of one yard in twelve, thirty-two persons, and arrived at the manufactory at thirty-five minutes past four o'clock, having consumed eleven bushels of coke, value 2s. Od., and travelled in all about twenty-nine miles.”
The published plan of the London and Brighton Railway makes the line as nearly as possible direct from Kennington Common to the entrance of Brighton, a distance of about 47 miles, and the passage is to be made in two hours. The line of road runs to Streatham, east of Nlitcham and Sutton to Merstham, leaving Reigate about four miles to the west, on to Horley and Worth, passing Crawley about a mile westward, to within a mile of Cuckfield, and on through Hurstperpoint and Patcham to Brighton Branch roads are contemplated ; one from near Cuckfield to Lewes and Hastings; another, commencing at Horley, through Crawley, a little south-east of Horsham, and, passing close to Steyning and Bramber, on to New Shoreham. There is a third line laid down along the Sussex coast, through Shoreham, Worthing, Little Hanıpton, Chichester, Havant, Cosham, Fareham, and ending at Southampton. The estimated expense is 850,0001. It appears that at present about 600 persons pass daily, upon the average of the year, from London to Brighton; they calculate on being able to carry passengers for about 8s., or 2d. a mile. The coaches at present are taking people for 78., so great is the competi. tion on the road.