The relation of the course which the Sunshine a barke of fiftie tunnes, and the Northstarre a small pinnesse, being two vessels of the fleete of M. Iohn Dauis, helde after hee had sent them from him to discouer the passage betweene Groenland and Island, written by Henry Morgan seruant to M. William Sanderson of London.
May. The seuenth day of May 1586. wee departed out of Dartmouth hauen foure sailes, to wit, the Mermaid, the Sunshine, the Mooneshine, and the Northstarre. In the Sunshine were sixteene men, whose names were these: Richard Pope Master, Marke Carter Masters mate, Henry Morgan Purser, George Draward, Iohn Mandie, Hugh Broken, Philip Iane, Hugh Hempson, Richard Borden, Iohn Philpe, Andrew Madock, William Wolcome, Robert Wag carpenter, Iohn Bruskome, William Ashe, Simon Ellis.
Our course was Westnorthwest the seuenth and eight dayes: and the ninth day in the morning we were on head of the Tarrose of Silley. Thus coasting along the South part of Ireland the 11. day, we were on head of the Dorses: and our coarse was Southsouthwest vntill sixe of the clocke the 12. day. The 13. day our course was Northwest. M. Dauis in the latitude of 60. deg. diuideth his fleete into 2. parts. We remained in the company of the Mermaid and the Mooneshine vntill we came to the latitude of 60. degrees: and there it seemed best to our Generall M. Dauis to diuide his fleete, himself sayling to the Northwest, and to direct the Sunshine, wherein I was, and the pinnesse called the Northstarre, to seeke a passage Northward between Groenland and Island to the latitude of 80. degrees, if land did not let vs. The 7. of Iune. So the Seuenth day of Iune wee departed from them: and the ninth of the same we came to a firme land of yce, which we coasted along the ninth, the tenth, and the eleuenth dayes of Iune: Island descryed. and the eleuenth day at sixe of the clocke at night we saw land which was very high, which afterward we knew to be a Island: and the twelft day we harboured there, and found many people: 66. degrees. the land lyeth East and by North in 66. degrees.
Their commodities. Their commodities were greene fish, and Island lings, and stockfish, and a fish which is called Scatefish: of all which they had great store. They had also kine, sheep and horses, and hay for their cattell, and for their horses. Wee saw also their dogs. Their dwellings. Their dwelling houses were made on both sides with stones, and wood layd crosse ouer them, which was couered ouer with turfes of earth, and they are flat on the tops, and many of these stood hard by the shore. Their boats. Their boates were made with wood and yron all along the keele like our English boates: and they had nayles for to naile them withall, and fish-hookes and other things for to catch fish as we haue here in England. They had also brasen kettles, and girdles and purses made of leather, and knoppes on them of copper, and hatchets, and other small tooles as necessary as we haue. They drie their fish in the Sun, and when they are dry, they packe them vp in the top of their houses. If we would goe thither to fishing more then we doe, we should make it a very good voyage: for wee got an hundreth greene fish in one morning. Wee found heere two English men with a shippe, which came out of England about Easter day of this present yeere 1586, and one of them came aboord of vs, and brought vs two lambs. M. Iohn Roydon of Ipswich. The English mans name was M. Iohn Roydon of Ipswich marchant: hee was bound for London with his ship. And this is the summe of that which I obserued in Island. They departed from Island Northwest. We departed from Island the sixteenth day of Iune in the morning, and our course was Northwest, and we saw on the coast two small barkes going to an harborough: we went not to them, but saw them a farre off. Thus we continued our course vnto the end of this moneth.
Iuly. The third day of Iuly we were in betweene two firme lands of yce, and passed in betweene them all that day vntill it was night: and then the Master turned backe againe, and so away we went towards Groenland. Groneland discouered. And the seuenth day of Iuly we did see Groenland, and it was very high, and it looked very blew: we could not come to harborough into the land, because we were hindered by a firme land as it were of yce, which was along the shoares side: but we were within three leagues of the land, coasting the same diuers dayes together. The land of Desolation. The seuenteenth day of Iuly wee saw the place which our Captaine M. Iohn Dauis the yeere before had named The land of Desolation, where we could not goe on shore for yce. The eighteenth day we were likewise troubled with yce, and went in amongst it at three of the clocke in the morning. Groenland coasted from the 7. till the last of Iuly. After wee had cleared our selues thereof, wee ranged all along the coast of Desolation vntill the ende of the aforesayd moneth.
August. The third day of August we came in sight of Gilberts sound in the latitude of 64. deg. 15. min which was the place where we were appoynted to meete our Generall and the rest of our Fleete. Here we came to an harborough at 6. of the clocke at night.
The 4. day in the morning the Master went on shore with 10. of his men, and they brought vs foure of the people rowing in their boats aboord of the ship. And in the afternoone I went on shore with 6. of our men, and there came to vs seuen of them when we were on land. We found on shore three dead people, and two of them had their staues lying by them, and their olde skinnes wrapped about them and the other had nothing lying by, wherefore we thought it was a woman. The houses of Gronland. We also saw their houses neere the Sea side, which were made with pieces of wood on both sides, and crossed ouer with poles and then couered ouer with earth: we found Foxes running vpon the hilles: as for the place it is broken land all the way that we went, and full of broken Islands.
The 21. of August the Master sent the boate on shore for wood with sixe of his men, and there were one and thirtie of the people of the countrey which went on shore to them, and they went about to kill them as we thought, for they shot their dartes towards them, and we that were aboord the ship, did see them goe on shore to our men: whereupon the Master sent the pinnesse after them, and when they saw the pinnesse comming towards them, they turned backe, and the Master of the pinnesse did shoote off a caliuer to them the same time, but hurt none of them, for his meaning was onely to put them in feare. Our men play at footeball with the Sauages. Diuers times they did waue vs on shore to play with them at the football, and some of our company went on shore to play with them, and our men did cast them downe as soone as they did come to strike the ball. And thus much of that which we did see and do in that harborough where we arriued first.
The 23. day wee departed from the Merchants Isle, where wee had beene first, and our course from thence was South and by West, and the wind was Northeast, and we ran that day and night about 5. or 6. leagues, vntill we came to another harborough.
The 24. about eleuen of the clocke in the forenoone wee entred into the aforesayd new harborow, and as wee came in, we did see dogs running vpon the Islands. When we were come in, there came to vs foure of the people which were with vs before in the other harborough, and where we rode, we had sandie ground. Sweete wood found. We saw no wood growing, but found small pieces of wood vpon the Islands, and some small pieces of sweete wood among the same. We found great Harts hornes, but could see none of the Stagges where we went, but we found their footings. As for the bones which we receiued of the Sauages I cannot tell of what beasts they be.
The stones that we found in the countrey were black, and some white, as I think they be of no value, neuerthelesse I haue brought examples of them to you.
The 30. of August we departed from this harborough towards England, and the wind tooke vs contrary, so that we were faine to go to another harborough the same day at 11. of the clocke. And there came to vs 39. of the people, and brought vs 13. Seale skins, and after we receiued these skins of them, the Master sent the carpenter to change one of our boates which wee had bought of them before, and they would haue taken the boate from him perforce, and when they sawe they could not take it from vs, they shot with their dartes at vs, and stroke one of our men with one of their dartes, and Iohn Philpe shot one of them into the brest with an arrow. A skirmish between the Sauages and our men. And they came to vs againe, and foure of our men went into the shipboate, and they shot with their dartes at our men: but our men tooke one of their people in his boate into the shipboate, and he hurt one of them with his knife, but we killed three of them in their boates: two of them were hurt with arrowes in the brests, and he that was aboord our boat, was shot in with an arrow, and hurt with a sword, and beaten with staues, whome our men cast ouerboord, but the people caught him and carried him on shore vpon their boates, and the other two also, and so departed from vs. And three of them went on shore hard by vs, where they had their dogs, and those three came away from their dogs, and presently one of their dogs came swimming towards vs hard aboord the ship, whereupon our Master caused the Gunner to shoote off one of the great pieces towards the people, and so the dog turned backe to land and within an noure after there came of the people hard aboord the ship, but they would not come to vs as they did come before.
The 31. of August we departed from Gylberts sound for England, and when we came out of the harborough there came after vs 17. of the people looking which way we went.
The 2. of September we lost sight of the land at 12. of the clocke at noone.
The pinnesse neuer returned home. The third day at Night we lost sight of the Northstarre our pinnesse in a very great storme, and lay a hull tarying for them the 4. day, but could heare no more of them. Thus we shaped our course the 5. day Southsoutheast, and sayling vntill the 27. of the sayd moneth, we came in sight of Cape Clere in Ireland.
The 30. day we entred our owne chanell.
The 2. of October we had sight of the Isle of Wight.
The 3. we coasted all along the shore, and the 4. and 5.
The 6. of the said moneth of October wee came into the riuer of Thames as high as Ratcliffe in safetie God be thanked.
Last updated Tuesday, August 25, 2015 at 14:09