I have the pleasure to inform you that I [am] well & likewise Robert but am sorry to tell you that we have lost our ship fighting a Stratagim that never happened before in the memory of man Apr 28, 1789 — on the Twenty Eight of April at day break the Captain & me were surprised by Mr Christain Stewart Young Haywood & the Master at Arms, with twenty one [of the?] people, Christain & the Master at Arms went into Mr Blighs Cabin & tyed his hands behind him. Two men came into my Cabin, with musquets & Bayonets, told me if I spoke, that I was a dead man & that Mr Christain had taken the Ship and that they was to put us onshore upon one of the Friendly Isles. I expostulated with them but all to no purpose, they hoisted the long boat out, and all them that would not join with them in the Mutiny, they obliged to go into the boat. I was the last that received that order and I was obliged to beg hard of Christain to let Robert come with me — he at last consented that he could come with me. — When I came on deck I found they had force[d] the Boatswain [Surgeon?] Carpenter Botanist [?] Hayward Hallit [Linkletter?] Clark [clerk] Elphinstone Mr Norton [?] seven of the men into the boat with the Captn which with Robert & myself made nineteen.
They gave us about Two Hundred pounds of bread & sixteen small pieces of Pork — a compass and an old quadrant with some of his cloaths, we were then about twelve Leags from an Island called Tofoa on which we landed the next day, but could not find amy thing to Eat or water to Drink. We were in that situation two Days — which made our case the more Dreadfull, the third Day when some of us was looking for water we fell in with some of the Natives whome at first seem'd very friendly, but the fourth Day, in the morning they began to be Hostile, and thieves taking from us what little matters we had, in the Eve of the same Day — we made the attempt to leave them, which we luck[i]ly effected our Escape with the loss of one man, whom was killed by a stone from one of ye natives, several of us was wounded but recovered, they follow'd us on their canoes, with stones, several miles to Sea but the night coming on they quitted us — there blowing a gale of wind and the Sea running very high — which was another Danger we had to Encounter with, as we every minute we feared the Sea would fill the boat. Providence had saved us from one Danger we hope[d] God would protect us from the Danger of [the] Sea. We then began to think what we should do — we had but little to eat or drink, but that little we thought if we used it sparingly we might live some time — & if landing on any other Isles we should meet with the same treatment, if the natives spared our lives we should have had but little chance of ever getting home — therefore we all came to a resolution to keep ourselves on allowance of bread & water. The bread we had we calculated to last forty Days at two ounces a Day for each man — & the water to last half that time at two gills per Day — but we flattered ourselves that h[e]aven would supply us with water before that was expended.
We therefore gave ourselves up to the care of providance and Hoisted our sail and steered our course for New Holland which at that time was nine Hundred Leagues from us which distance we sail'd in one month.
When we came there we could get but water, Oysters and some other [shellfish?] which we lived on two days — finding we could [?] refreshments there we got out again & steer'd our course for an Island call'd Timor which belong to the Dutch we [?] got there in fourteen days [?] five days [?] left at aforesaid Isl. [?] we should have all been dead for when we got onshore we were all skeletons in comparison, but thank God we found friends there that soon return'd us to our proper States: for they gave us every assistance that [?] however after we had be[en] there sometime the Botanist Mr Nelson Died. When we got stronger Mr Bligh purchased a small [yawl?] to bring us to Batavia — at which place we are waiting to go on a Dutch ship — which will sail in three weeks & that my Dearest Girl I hope to be with you on May next or the beginning of June.
We have [been] at this place a week — [?] there is very Dear it cost me every day for Robert and myself three Dollars which in this Country is fifteen shillings, and cloaths likewise are very Dear. What I lost in the Ship and Expenses living shall make a braking Voyage —
I shall be very happy if one Hundred pounds with my pay will clear me but hope that Government will take our misfortunes in consideration and make some allowance for our [loss?] — I was obliged to Draw on Mr [?] at Timor for [99?] Rix Dollar which is about [?] [?] pound. Batavia gave Mr Bligh [?] of [?] pounds which was [?] to him for the expence of the [mess?] [for?] he wished all matters settled fearing that one of us might Die — but that thank God we are all well except two of our men which are sick at the Hospital here — one of which I am afraid will Die — this letter come in a packet to Holland — which we suppose will be home some time before us — so that the People in England will hear of our misfortunes & forget them before we get home. — I will not trouble you with any more of our Adventures.
from Your Affectionate