There is an Island call’d Peeper, lying in the Mouth of the Savannah River, between which and Tybee there is a very good Harbour. In the Evening we came to Anchor there, where lay the following Ships: The Prince of Wales, Capt. Dunbar, the Two Brothers, Capt. Thomson, and the Peter and James, Capt. Dymond, who were all on
the Trustees Account, with Stores and Men for the Southward Settlement, and obliged to stay on Demurrage, by reason of our being unluckily delay’d by contrary Winds at Cowes. Mr. Oglethorpeemploy’d all Hands to discharge them, that he might stop the Expense of Demurrage as soon as possible. All the Ships saluted Mr. Oglethorpe with their Cannon on our coming to Anchor; after which he sent an Express to Charles-Town, and to Lieut. Delegal, (who commanded the King’s Independent Company at Port Royal) for the Company to repair to St. Simon’s.
We learnt from Capt. Dunbar, who had brought over 170 Highlanders, that Capt. Hugh Mackay was set out for the Alatamaha River; he being gone first with Part of the Men, and having left the Families to follow after.
That there had been several Reports spread amongst the Highlanders, by the Suttlers who brought them Provisions, that the Spaniards and Indians would certainly destroy them; notwithstanding which they went up.
On the 6th, early, Mr. Oglethorpe set out for Savannah; but he first carried the People on shore upon Peeper Island, and shew’d them where to dig a Well, which they did, and found Plenty of fresh Water. He was received at Savannah by the Freeholders under Arms, and under the Salute of 21 Cannons, which we heard plainly, being about ten Miles distance.
After Mr. Oglethorpe was gone to Savannah, most of the Colony went ashore upon Peeper Island, where I found an Eagle’s Nest on a Fir-tree; we cut it down, and found an Egg in it, in which was a young Eagle. In the Evening the People found another Spring, and also a Pond of fresh Water, which they used for washing their Linnen.
A small Sloop passed by us for Savannah, bound thither with Provisions from Carolina.
On the 7th, all our Women went ashore on Peeper Island to wash their Linnen., A Boat came down from Savannah with some fresh Beef, Pork, Venison and other Refreshments, sent by Mr. Oglethorpe for the People on board this Ship and the London Merchant. In the Evening we had a smart Shower of Rain, which wetted our good Women to the Skins before they could get aboard.
On the 8th some Boats with Suttlers came on board with Provisions to sell to the Passengers. They privately brought some Rum; which being discover’d, the Officers who were left by Mr.Oglethorpe to keep Orders on board, during his Absence, order’d the same to be staved; which was accordingly complied with. The Boat returned which had been sent to Port Royal, with Answer, that the Refreshments which had been bespoke from England, for the Use of the Colony, were not ready. She immediately proceeded up to Savannah, having Packets of Letters for Mr.Oglethorpe, who in the Evening return’d from thence in a Scout-boat. This was a strong-built swift Boat, with three swivel Guns and ten Oars, kept for the visiting the River-Passages, and Islands, and for preventing the Incursions of Enemies, or Runaways, from whence it is call’d Scout-boat. The Crew is composed of Men bred in America, bold and hardy, who lie out in the Woods, and upon the Water Months together, without a House or Covering. Most of them are good Hunters or Fishers. By killing Deer and other Game they can subsist themselves, in café their Provisions should fail; but indeed, on these Sea-islands, no one can starve, since if, at the worst, a Man was lost, there are Oysters and Shell-fish enough to subsist him.
Mr. Oglethorpe brought with him fresh Meat, and other Refreshments in Plenty, which he distributed to the new Comers, consisting of fresh Beef, fresh Pork, Venison, wild Turkeys, soft Bread (the Word soft is put to distinguish it from Biscuit, because at Sea they call Biscuit, Bread) Strong-beer, Small-beer, Turnips, and Garden-greens; and this in such Plenty, that there was enough for the whole Colony for some Days. This was doubly agreeable to the Colony, both because they found the Comfort of fresh Food after a long Voyage, and also that a Town begun within these three Years, by People in their own Circumstances, could produce such Plenty; from whence they hoped themselves should be in as good or better a Condition within that Time. The People were not a little surprised at the News, which came by the Boat, that Mr. Vonreck and the Germans did not go to the Southward with them. This is the more extraordinary, because Mr. Vonrecksaid, that he went up to Ebenezer to get some more Men from thence, who are acquainted with the Colony, to increase the Strength of the new Town. But this did not daunt our Inhabitants (that were to be) of Frederica (for so our Town was to be called) though to be sure, the losing half our Number was a great Lessening of our Strength. The Reason, we heard, he gave for the Germansgoing up to Ebenezer and not with us, was, that they might have the Benefit of the two Ministers, who were settled at Ebenezer and that they might not divide the Congregation. Others of theGermans did not care to go to the Southward, because, they said, Fighting was against their Religion, and they apprehended Blows might happen there. But Captain Hermsdorf came to Mr.Oglethorpe, and desired that he might be put upon every Occasion of Service, if there