Copyright
Monsieur de Pagès.

Travels round the world, in the years 1767, 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771 (Volume 1) online

. (page 1 of 14)
Online LibraryMonsieur de PagèsTravels round the world, in the years 1767, 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771 (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 14)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


,0 N,









-^ W ^X.;]



>



C ^''^^^f*






IV^



The

Robert E. Gross
Colleftion

A Memorial to the Founder
of the



Business Administration Library
Los Angeles



(It






^^



ig



4



r






D




TRAVELS

ROUND THE WORLD,

IN THE YEARS
1767, 1768, 1769, 1770, I77I.

B Y

MONSIEUR DE PAGES,

CAPTAIN IN THE FRENCH NAVY, CHEVALIER OF THE

ROYAL AND MILITARY ORDER OF ST. LOUIS,

AND CORRESPONDING MEMBER OF THE

ACADEMY OF SCIENCES

AT PARTS.

TRANSLATED FROM THE FRENCH.

VOLUME THE FIRST.



LONDON:

FRiNTED FOR J. MURRAY, N» 32, FLEET STR.EÏT.
M.DCC.XCI,



LETTER



T O



MONSIEUR LE COMTE DE C



SIR,

X HE favourable opinion you
are pleafed to exprefs of my Travels,
ought not, I am afraid, to be attri-
buted to their merit, but folely to
Vol. I. a that



iv LETTER TO

that zeal for the general interefts
of men, and the encouragement of
the public fervice, by which you
are eminently diftinguifhed.

It was never my intention to fub-
mit to the criticifm of ftrangers the
faults and imperfedions of my ftyle,
which, I confefs, has often appeared
defeélive to myfelf ; and nothing but
your authority could have engaged
me in the defign of putting my
crude diary in order. Monf. le
Comte de Buffon and you have,
unfortunately perhaps for me,
over-ruled my judgment. Your

friend ihip,



THE COUNT DE C. v

friendship, and the very flattering
fuffrage of that excellent genius,
fo juftly celebrated in the annals of
literary fame, for his taflie, for his
precifion, and for that incompara-
ble pencil with which he has traced
the Hiftory of Nature, could not
fail to feduce me. Neverthelefs,
to confent that my Travels fhall
be offered to the perufal of the
public, mufl be a very perilous
compliance ; but be it fo, for, how-
ever unaffecftedly diffident of my-
felf, I cannot decline yielding to
your requeft. It is unneceffary to
fay, that I have no pretenlions
a 2 whatever



vi LETTER TO

whatever to the qualities expeâ-
ed in an author; that the bufi-
nefs of adlive life has afforded me
neither time nor opportunity to ac-
quire them ; and therefore in the
following pages I prefume only to
give a fimple and inartificial de-
fcription of objeds, as they im-
preffed themfelves upon my own
mind. But, Sir, will the public
have the fame candour and indul-
gence with you ? Will they, for
the fake of fimple and unadorned
truth, excufe the ftyle of a military
man, who has been long a wanderer
in wild and favage countries ; who
4 feeks



THE COUNT DE C. vii

feeks only to convey his fentiments
to the reader without confulion ;
and who, little concerned for the
ornaments of compofition, is, of all
literary talents, ambitious of per-
fpicuity alone ? This work is the
produdlion neither of a philofopher,
nor of a man verfant in letters ; it
is the plain relation of a traveller,
the friend of man and of nature,
who afiFedls not the applaufe of
deep fagacity, but rather that of
candid and common obfervation.
In confidering perfons, manners,
and things, the natural fenfibility
of my mind frequently gives occa-
a 3 lion



viii LETTER TO

fion to reflexions, which I have
no doubt muft claim the reader's
indulgence ; and, if he is kindly
difpofed to be my companion in
the courfe of long and painful tra-
vels, which I undertook in the
hope and very earneft deflre of
ferving my country, as well as of
gratifying the early and innocent
propenfities of my own mind, I am
confident the indulgence I folicit
will not be withheld.

I am foon to fail for France : My
health is much improved, and the
continuance of war renders my pre-

fence



THE COUNT DE C. âx

fence necefiaryat home. But, infpite
of the very lincere pleafure I have in
the profpeâ: of meeting with my
friend, I cannot, though my abfence
fhould only prove temporary, part
without extreme regret from my de-
lightful valley of Baradaire. Alas !
the beauty of this climate, and the
peaceful rural borders of my river,
accord more with my feelings than
the noify and contentious fcenes
which await me in Europe. In
the conftancy and refources of your
friendfhip alone I can hope to be
compenfated for the ferene pleafures
I muft relinquifh v/ith my prefent

retreat.



% LETTER TO THE COUNT DE C.

retreat. 1 have the honour to

be, with fentiments the moft fincere
and refpeétful,

SIR,

^aradaire, in St. Domingo^
lOthMay 1780.

Your moft humble.
And moft obedient fervant.



PAGES.



CONTENTS,



CONTENTS,



VOLUME!,
PART I.

A VOYAGE WESTWARD FROM THE COAST OF
FRANCE, CROSSING THE ATLANTIC, AMERICA,
THE SOUTH SEA, AND THE CHINESE ARCHIPE-
LAGO, TO THE ISLAND OF JAVA.

CHAP. I.

Concerning the ObjeSls and Motives of the
following Travels - • - Page i

CHAP. n.

My Pajfagefrom the IJland of St, Domingo ta
New Orleans — Obfervations on New Or-
leans^ and its Inhabitants - « 6

CHAP.



xii Contents,



CHAP. III.

My P^ffage from New Orleans, by the Mif-

Jifippi and Red River, to the Settlement

of Nachitoches - - Page 22



CHAP. IV.

A Journey from Nachitoches, by Adaés and
Naquadoch — Two Excurfons to this lajl
'Place - - - 4^



CHAP. V.

A fourney from Naquadoch, by the River
Guadaloupe, to the Settlemeiît of San An-
tonio, in the Province of Te gas - 72

CHAP. VI.

A fourney from San Antonio, by Rheda,
acrofs Rio Bravo, to the City of Sartille
• — my Abode in that Place - 106

CHAP.



X30NTENTS. Xm

CHAP. VU.

^ journey from Sartille, by the Cities Qhar^
casy San Louis Potojiy San Miguel el
Grande, and San yuan del Rio, to Mexico
— a Defcription of that City, Page i2i

CHAP. VIII.

A Journey from the City of Mexico, by Rio

de las Balfas, and the Village of Chilpin-

Jingo, to the Fort of Acafulco — Obfer-

vations on that Port - - 1 46

CHAP. IX.

A Voyage from Acapulco to the Philippine
I/lands — A Vifit to Guam, one of the Marian
I/les — An 'Excurfion on fome of the mojl
eajterly in the Philippine Archipelago i ^j

C H A P. X.

Voyage from Samar to the IJland of Luco^

nia-.



XIV CONTENTS.

nia ; and my Abode m the City of Ma-
nilla - - -. Page 215

CHAP. XII.

A Voyage from Manilla to Batavia, on the
IJland of fava, and my Abode in that
City - « . .. 260



A TO UR



A

TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

BY SEA AND LAND.



PART I.

A VOYAGE WESTWARD FROM THE COAST OF
FRANCE, CROSSING THE ATLANTIC, AMERICA,
THE SOUTH SEA, AND THE CHINESE ARCHIPE-'
LAGO, TO THE ISLAND OF JAVA.



CHAP. I.

Concerning the ObjeBs and Motives of the
following 'Travels»

BEFORE I proceed to the narrative
of my Voyage round the Globe, I have
only to obferve that, invited by certain cir-
cumilances relative to my private views, as
well as the fervice of the navy, in which I
have the honour to be engaged, I conceived
the defign of exploring the Indian feas by a
Weftern navigation.

Vol, I» B Secondly,



2 TOUR ROUND THE WORlD,

Secondly, it was my intention, turning my
face towards the north, to traverfe China
and Tartary, and having penetrated as far
as the coaft of Kamtfchatka, to dired my
induftry in the Une of the Ruffian Ihores to
the difcovery of the north-wefl: paflage.

To ftudy the manners and cuftoms of
thofe northern tribes, to affiime their drefs
and charaâ:er, and, by attending them in
all their expeditions, to move on from one
village to another in the vicinity of the
ocean, were the very fimple means by which
I hoped to accompliih this laft part of my
plan. I had little doubt of meeting this
great objedl of nautical invelligation fome-
where on the northern confines of Siberia;
or, if the continuity of land conducted me in-
to the polar regions of America, I fhould at
leafl have the fatisfadion to afcertain the
abfolute impoffibility of any fuch commu-
nication : but being unable to obtain, as
will afterwards be mentioned, introduc-
tory letters from the miffionaries of Luco-
nia to their friends in the Chinefe domi-
nions, I was under the neceffity of defifting
from this part of my intended expedition.
I uféd, from the very early years of child-
hood.



BY SEA AND LAND. 3

liood, to read with lively emotion the rela-
tions of travellers who had been engagd in
the difcovery of unknown countries ; and
at a more mature age the conquefts of Eu-
ropean nations in the two Indies> and the
adventures of the Ruffians in the northern
parts of that vafl empire, awaked my ambi^
tion for fimilar enterprizes ; but above all,
an ardent deiire to furvey Nature's works
in the native charms with which they came
from the hand of the Creator, became in
me a principle of adion, and obtained en*
tire poiTeflion of my mind= I was much
perfuaded that inconflancy, impatience, and
a croud of idle and artificial wants, incident
to men who, by reafon of their birth and
education, have been exclufively invefted
with the command of every important ex-
pedition, would eafily account for the little
advantage derived to the public from many
preceding voyages. Hence I was inclined
to infer, that a hardy and laborious manner
of life, maintained with fortitude and perfe-
verance, were the only probable means of
rendering the toil and induftry of the tra-
veller of fome benefit to mankind : and,
B a having



4 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

having an opinion that man is free from
mahce, innocent, and inoffenfive, in propor-
tion as he is removed from the arts of a
refined and luxurious age, an extreme lim-
phcity in tny w^hole condud; and charadler,
however difliked by the fallidious tafle of
the pohflied European, promifed to be my
beft recommendations to rude and unin-
formed minds. In thefe views, I loft fight
of every difficulty before me, reflected on
the outlines of my plan with all the ardour
of enthufiafm, and was only folicitous for
an opportunity of carrying it into effed:.

Such was the ftate of my mind, when,
in the year 1766, my duty as an officer
called me from Rochfort to the ifland of
St. Domingo, concerning which I have
nothing to obferve, fince that country, as
well as the navigation thither, have been
long fufficiently known to the public.

In obedience to thofs maxims, by means
of which I hoped to efcape the mifcar^
riages of former travellers, I began to train
myfeif to habits of life as fimple and fevere
as new to my experience ; a courfe of dif-
cipline, however, 1 will fairly own, rather

impofed



BY SEA AND LAND. 5

împofed by neceffity than embraced from
choice, having neither fortune nor credit
that could enable me to execute the travels
I had in viev/, among nations either wholly
favage, little civilized, or for particular rea-
fons impatient of ftrangers, in the eafy and
convenient manner I could have wiflied. I
now haftened to the accomplifhment of my
favourite plan, with every degree of alacrity
and difpatch, confident with the regard I
owed to the fervice ; and being invited by
circumftances I might never have found
equally propitious to my defign in any other
place than Cape François, I refolved to de-
part.

I embarked in a French vefTel bound to
New Orleans, relying for fuccefs in fubmif-
fion to Providence, on my auftere habits of
life, courage, and perfeverance, whereby I
hoped to overcome ail the toil and fatigue of
my travels, and even the hardfhips of bodily
labour, when on any occafion circumftances
might render it expedient. New Orleans
had lately been ceded to the Spaniards, but
ftill I was in hopes it might be pofTible to
pafs through that country, which lies be-
B 3 tween



6 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

tween the river MilTifippi and Rio Grande,
or Bravo, which feparates the province of
Louifiana from New Spain, and which is
inhabited merely by favage tribes. This
comprehends animmenfe extent of country;
but undifmayed by the many difficulties in
my way, I determined to purfue the line
of march I had projecfted, and endeavour
to enter the province of New Spain by the
frontiers of New Mexico.



CHAP. II.

My Paff'^g^ from the I/land of St. Domingo
to New QrkanSi and my Abode in that

Fiace,

WE fet fail from Cape François the
laft day of June 1767, llreering for
the old canal ; and the wind being eafterly,
our courfe was direded towards the weft-
north- weft. Keeping more to the north-
weft, we gradually loft fight of land, and
pafted north of St. Nicholas, at the diftance

of



BY SEA AND LAND. J

of eight leagues. Continuing our courfe
under the fame wind, we foon ©"bferved
the coaft of Cuba, faw Cape de Mulas, and
then proceeded in quefl of the iflands de
Palumas, which form, on the fide of the
main, the entrance to the old canal ; but in
order to make fure of thefe iflands, their
iituation being extremely low, we had been
at great pains to afcertain Cape de Mulas ;
for the continuation of the coafl of Cuba
is not eafily perceived, and it requires all the
fkill and addrefs of an intelligent pilot to
approach it without danger. Wç entered
the canal with the iflands de Palumas on the
larboard, and Sandy iflands on the flarboard
fide. It is here five leagues in breadth,
and continues very much the fame till you
reach the difl:ance of about fixty leagues.
The old canal is formed on the fide of the
ocean by a chain of fmall iflands and rocks,
which extends to the canal of the Baha-
mas 5 and on the fide of the ifland of Cuba
by a reef of rocks and fand-banks, flretch-
ing out of fight from land.

The wind was flill at eafl:, with a

gentle breeze 3 and having the advantage of

3 4 the



8 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

the current, we had the good fortune to
clear the canal in the fpace of four days.
It is furprifing that fhips which have oc-
cafion to navigate thofe feas expofe them-
felves to a long, and, by reafon of frequent
calms, a tedious voyage fouth-weft of Cuba;
fince, by purfuing the old canal, if the maf-
ter is but properly on his guard, all thofe
inconveniencies may eafily be avoided. We
now flood diredly for Matance, an inland
mountain, weftward from a bay of the fame
name, which feems to overtop the circum-
jacent mountains in the form of a hat,
whence it has been named Chapeau de Ma-
tance. Having difcovered the Havannah in
the ill:ind of Cuba, we flood off the coaft,
and proceeded to inveftigate the foundings of
the Turtle iflands, fituated fouth-weft from
Cape Florida. Sounding in the fouth-wefl
of thcfe ifl^s, where they are ftill unper-
ceived on account of their very low fitua-
tion, we had fifty fathoms water, on a bot-
tom of blackilh find, and this they deem
the charadleriflic mark of thofe foundings.
We veered a little to the weft, in order to
ilretch acrofs the curvature formed by the

gulph



BY SEA AND LAND. 9

gulph of Florida, and we immediately loft
them. Here we were detained by fre-
quent calms, and faw multitudes of gold
fifh, uncommonly large, and about five feet
in length : they are diftinguifhed by a va-
riety of beautiful colours, which play upon
the eye in an entertaining manner. I ob-
ferved that the force of the current from
fouth to north (a current probably owing
to the trade winds, and the pofition of the
neighbouring lands) was moft powerful
when the north wind blew with the
greateft impetuoiity. This appearance I
can only explain by fuppoiing that the
billows, driven by the violence of the north
wind againft areef of rocks which ftretches
away to the eaft-fouth-eaft, rebounding,
pafs over their heads, and fall into a calm
fea i when its level being raifed above that
of the ocean, the waters in recovering their
equipoife exhibit this extraordinary phe-
nomenon.

We were now approaching the mouths
of the Miiîifippi, the entrance to which is
dangerous to {hipping, not only from the
inconvenience of large trees carried down

by



10 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

by the flream, but likewife from the jeo-
pardy of being drifted acrofs the channel
into the bay of St. Bernard, a bay which,
by reafon of its many rocks and fand-Kmks,
is particularly dreaded by navigators. As
the arrival of veiTels is generally from the
eaft, and as the wind is moil: prevalent in
the fame quarter, it has been found that
failing in a north-weil direction is more
convenient than due north j befides, that
by the former route there is lefs hazard of
being carried into the bay of St. Bernard. We
entered the fouthern or principal mouth of
the river, with the affiflance of a pilot.

I was extremely furprifed with the beau-
ty of the Miffiiippi, whofe waters, after
mixing with the fea, preferve their fweet-
nefs and pale colour two or three leagues
• from fliore. The force of the current,
ftill perceptible at that diflance, carries out
to fea vafl: trees, which have fallen from the
decay of age, or have been rooted out by
the ftream, to the m.oleftation of fuch lliipg
as happen to come in their way.

In the free and regular courfe of the
river, it runs at leaft two leagues and a half

an



BY SEA AND LAND. IT

an hour. The waters fwelling towards
the fides by the great rapidity of the cur-
rent, acquire a motion different from that
in the middle. We made it our bufmefs
to profit of this circumflance, by keep-
ing the vefTel in the eddy j but in fpite of
every precaution we afcended ilowly. The
wind, though rather in our favour, was very
inconfiderable, and we had frequently to
contend with currents of extreme rapi-
dity. Our hardfliips were alfo greatly ag-
gravated by vafl fwarms of mufcatoes and
fand- flies, the flings of which are exqui-
fitely painful. The low and marfhy
banks of the MifTifippi are covered with
reeds, which are particularly favourable to
the increafe of thefe infedls; and nature,
one would think, is at pains to diverfify
their fpecies,with a view to render the fuf-
fering they occafion to the traveller as va-
rious as it is poignant; for I could perceive
the fenfations of pain to differ with the
form, fize, and colour of the fly. Here
the vail green furface of reeds prefented to
the eye, tall and undulating like the waves of
the fea, might have afforded an entertain-
ing



12 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

ing profpe(5l, could we have forgotten to
what malicious guefts they gave fhelter.
The moll troublefome fpecies of thefe in-
fers during the heat of the fun is named
frappe d'abord^ a fly which bites the inftant
it aUghts on the ikin, with fach effed that
the blood immediately follows, and hence
the origin of its name. The frefh breeze
of the evening banifhes them to the covert

o

of their reeds, but they are fucceeded by
myriads of gnats, which we endeavoured
to difiipate by means of thick fmoke, a
remedy in ufe among the natives of Loui-
fiana againfl the fting and importunity of
this intolerable race of infecfls.

Having continued afcending to the dif-
tance of ten leagues, we came to the fepara-
tion of that branch which forms the fouth-
eafl mouth of the Miffifippi -, and here we
pafTed an oyfler marfh, in which were
ihells of prodigious fize, ufed by the in-
habitants for the purpofes of lime-ftone.
The fenny borders of the river afford a re-
treat to multitudes of morafs fowl, which,
for the fake of their oil, receive an annual
vifit from the induflrious inhabitants of

New



BY SEA AND LAND. 13

New Orleans. Fifteen leagues above the
mouths of the river we came to the creek
Plaquemines, fo named from a kind of fruit
very pleafant to the tafte. Here the coun-
try beginning to rife above the level of the
Miffifippi, the fceneiy becomes truiy mag-
nificent. On each bank are trees of won-
derful fize, which v/arped in the wild lux-
uriance of plants and underwood, form a
thick wood inacceffible to the rays of the
fun. Having made my v/ay with much
difficulty into the foreft, the foil matted
with a compoft of rotten leaves and
branches, prefented in fome places agree-
able walks, whilfl here and there we were
intercepted by pools of ilagnating water, or
by enormous trunks of trees, which a long
feries of ages had levelled with the ground.
The fwan and cardinal, natives of thefe
woods, are eminently beautiful in their
plumage, and the warbling of the laft is
equally fweet and delicate with that of the
finefl fongfter in Europe. In the nooks
and angles of this river we met with ducks,
teal, and other wild fowl in abundance, nor
is its ftream fcantily fupplied in different

kinds



14 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD^

kinds of large ûùi, fuch as the barbed and
armed filb, whofe fharp armour frequent-
ly admoniflies the fiflierman to avoid im-
prudent eagernefs in feizing his prey. The
wounds inflicted by thefe animals are con-
ftantly attended with inflammation and
fwelling.

In this little bay of the MifTilippi we
were overtaken by a violent ftorm, which,
as we were moored to a tree, fnapped our
cable, and dragged the anchor to the oppo-
fite fide. I find it is more common in the
courfe of this navigation to fecure the vef-
fel by means of hawfers feftened on the
bank, than by dropping anchor, becaufe'it
is extremely difficult to heave up, on ac-
count of the large trees which lie fcattered
in the bed of the river.

We began to meet with houfes and plan-
tations of rice and Indian corn. Rice is
feldom fown here but in fields, which
being only one or two feet above the le-
vel of the river, admit of canals for the
purpofe of watering them. Indian corn is
cultivated over the whole province of
Louifiana, but the crops are no where
I equally



BY SEA AND LAND. ï^

equally fine and abundant as in this part of
the country. The houfes of the inhabitants
are tolerably pleafant, and erected feveral
feet above the farface of the ground, in
order to guard againfl; the humidity of the
foil, ferpents, and other noxious animals.
The floor is conflirudled of fquare fedions
of large timber, dove-tailed and fupported
by ftrong beams and pillars. The body of
the building, refting on another fet of pil-
lars, has four façades, with a gallery to each,
and contains the family apartments. They
confifl: only of one ftory, and are covered v^ith
thin pieces of cyprefs v/ood, difpofed and
fixed on the roof in the manner of European
flating. Each houfe borders with a piece
of water, and is fet down in the middle of
a little plantation about two hundred- paces
fquare. The noble trees which once oc-
cupied this foil have been employed in
building and in fencing the plantations ; and
in order to get rid of the remainder with
the leaft trouble and difficulty, they ufually
burn it. In plantations, however, newly in-
clofed, one flill meets with large trunks,

which



l6 TOUR ROUND THE WORLD,

which cofl the planter much labour to root
out and clear them away.

After afcending eight leagues further, we
came to a creek which belongs to the Eng-
liih, and at the diilance of five leasfues
higher, on the 28th July, we dropped an-
chor oppoiite to New Orleans. This city
jftands about thirty leagues above the
mouths of the river, and only one from a
lake which communicates with plantations
lately ceded to the Englilli. All the way
from three leagues above the creek Plaque-
mines, the borders are cultivated and popu-
lous. The harbour of New Orleans is large
and commodious, its population but mode-
rate j the houfes are built of bile k, the ftreets
clean and broad, and fome buildings, parti-
cularly thofe which belong to the king, are
extremely handfome. The refident inhabi-
tants conilft of the garrifon, and fuch as hold
public employments, merchants, and arti-
zans of all denominations. The planters,
who are properly attentive to the cultivation
of their ellates, as well as merchants who
live far up the country for the purpofe of

trading



BY SEA AND LAND. I7

trading with the favages, are only feen in
the capital during the intervals of their in-
duflry and traffic.

I cannot fufficiently admire the bold and
intrepid charader peculiar to the people of
Louifiana, who, embracing the life of fa-
vages, afTume their drefs, and, for a very
ilender recompence, fubmit to all their mofl
laborious occupations. While fome of them
v/ander towards the fea-fhore in the chace
of morafs fowls, whofe oil adminifters to
a fmall branch of traffic, others ramble
four or five hundred leagues into the
country to hunt the bear, the deer, and
the wild buffalo, and return loaded with
their fkins, containing the flefh and fat
in a dried flate of prefervation. Some
penetrate into the depths of their foreils in
fearch of the cedar, the cyprefs, and the
maple-trees, which afford them a very pro-
fitable trade with the American illands.
To tranfport the peculiar productions of
their own foil to thefe illands, and bring
back in exchange different articles of com-


1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

Online LibraryMonsieur de PagèsTravels round the world, in the years 1767, 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771 (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 14)