14th February 1833

Beagle Channel

Captain Fitzroy’s Journal:
With considerable anxiety I crossed over from Button Island to Woollӯa. Several canoes were out fishing, women only being in them, who did not cease their occupation as we passed: this augured well; and in a few minutes after we saw Jemmy, York, and Fuegia, in their usual dress. But few natives were about them, and those few seemed quiet and well disposed. Jemmy complained that the people had stolen many of his things, but York and Fuegia had contrived to take better care of theirs. I went to their wigwams and found very little change. Fuegia looked clean and tidily dressed, and by her wigwam was a canoe, which York was building out of planks left for him by our party. The garden was uninjured, and some of the vegetables already sprouting.

Jemmy told us that strangers had been there, with whom he and his people had 'very much jaw,' that they fought, threw 'great many stone,' and stole two women (in exchange for whom Jemmy's party stole one), but were obliged to retreat. Jemmy's mother came down to the boat to see us; she was decently clothed, by her son's care. He said that his brothers were all friendly, and that he should get on very well now that the 'strange men' were driven away. I advised Jemmy to take his mother and younger brother to his own wigwam, which he promised to do, and then, finding that they were all quite contented and apparently very happy, I left the place, with rather sanguine hopes of their effecting among their countrymen some change for the better. Jemmy's occupation was hollowing out the trunk of a large tree, in order to make such a canoe as he had seen at Rio de Janeiro.

I hoped that through their means our motives in taking them to England would become understood and appreciated among their associates, and that a future visit might find them so favourably disposed towards us, that Matthews might then undertake, with a far better prospect of success, that enterprise which circumstances had obliged him to defer, though not to abandon altogether.

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