v. Oct-Dec 1836

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Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.1.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-312


[note] Rec’d 2/37

Rev. William Watson's Diary from October 1st to December 31st 1836

[1 October 1836]
Sat Octr 1st Several natives came up to day, they seemed much surprised at hearing our two little girls read; but they evidenced no desire to be able to do likewise.

[2 October 1836]
Sund 2nd More natives at Church to day: after service I instructed them as usual.

[Tuesday 4 October 1836]
Tuesd 4th The natives are coming up in great numbers, for the purpose of receiving Blankets: some of them listen to instruction, with apparent interest; but others seem to turn a deaf ear to all we say.

[5 October 1836]
Wednes 5th Having been supplied with Fish-hooks, and Blankets, the native men are gone down the river to fish: they have, however, left many of their females under our care, who are under instruction by day, and sleep at the camp, near the river, by night. They have been assisting us in clearing weeds off, in the garden.

[8 October 1836]
Sat 8th Kobon Billy, in accordance with his promise, this morning, brought two fine Cod-fish for Mrs Watson. He had caught them about three miles from our house. When in season, Fish is the principal food of the natives. Salt meat they will have, in the absence of fresh; but they are by no means partial to it. And yet it may be remarked how far civilization is gaining ground among them, from the simple circumstance, of some not relishing fresh meat without a little salt to it.

[9 October 1836]
Sund 9th About 50 natives on the establishment to day; but not more than 20 attended worship. After the English Service, I catechised our children, and some of the elderly natives said they understood what was said. In the afternoon I spoke to them all, and endeavoured to lead their minds to religious subjects.

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Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.2.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-313


[10 October 1836]
Mond Oct 10 All the men have gone into the Bush, and taken all their females except two. Our native youths, are also gone. Gungin says that two or three natives are angry with him, because they cannot succeed in decoying away from us two of our females, who are widows.

[11 October 1836]
Tuesd 11th King Bungarri, who is alternately here, and at Gobolion, came up to day. He said he had left the latter place because Mrs ___ “had Kicked up a row with him." It appears that he had been sent to the river, for water, and had lost the Bucket. He said that he did not lose it, it was the stream took it away.

[14 October 1836]
Frid 14th All the females have returned from the Bush, and say, that, the men will come up to morrow. Dhirram-Dhirram-Boy with his yinnar and son came to day for the first time. The man is extremely ill. This is one of the natives, that about 16 months ago were destroying so many cattle down the river, and whom in September 1835 I went to seek. I gave him some medicine and food; and then conversed with him. He appeared much surprised to hear me speak in his own language; but much more so to hear the natives unite with us in family worship, in their own language. They say their boy shall remain with us. Very many natives have swollen eyes, from the venomous bite of insects with which this country abounds.

[15 October 1836]
Sat 15th About 50 natives are remaining with us at present, including the men who came to day. Other natives passed through, on their way to Ngannima, where they expect to meet with enemies from a distance, provoked, it is said, by some of these natives singing about them. Ngarrang Batharai seemed highly delighted on hearing his child (our little Fanny 4 years old) reading: though he does not know a single letter of the Alphabet.

[16 October 1836]
Sund 16 As we had so large a number of natives, here, this morning, I hoped to

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.3.
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have a favourable opportunity of addressing them in a company; but they dispersed very quickly, without my knowing it, till it was too late. About 30 females, however, remained; but having learnt, that, a calf was dead, at a short distance, they took the spoil and went to the river, to cook it. I still expected that they would come together afterwards, but only few did: so that we had not more than 16 of them at Church in the morning and only 12 afterwards, to whom I could give instruction. A girl whose name is Lady Grey, of about eleven years, who has been with us at different times, came with the other females, and expressed an anxious desire to remain with us. The other native females wished her to go with them to Ngannima, where they were to join their husbands, but she refused. In the evening Dauboi, to whom it appears she is wife, came to the mission house, with all his weapons of war, and in a violent rage: he demanded the girl at our hands, and we hesitated not for a moment to say, that as she belonged to him, she must go; but that it would be better for him to leave her. He said, that, he had no other yinnar, and he wanted her to make his fire &c; but he would leave his boy with us. It was not without considerable difficulty, that, we could persuade the girl to accompany her husband. This evening while asking my children questions on the creation of the world &c, I took occasion to contrast the wisdom of God as displayed in the provision made for man, before his creation: as also in giving seeds to vegetables and trees, that a succession of them might be furnished, to the end of time, with the folly and short sightedness of man. I could not avoid bringing the subject home to the case of the aboriginal natives, who are so improvident as never to think of the morrow. I quoted Solomon's advice, "Go to the ant thou sluggard &c"[18] and endeavoured to explain the subject. They appeared to be much surprised, that any thing should be found in the Bible respecting so small a creature. This is the manner in which we endeavour

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.4.
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daily, from what they read, or from the scenes around us, to impart instruction. And it cannot be but they must improve in knowledge. This may almost be termed a land of ants; they abound so much in al[l] directions. The children in company with myself had frequently watched these busy troops when in the garden: but they seemed to day to feel more deeply interested in the subject. I may remark here, that, so accustomed are the native children, who are living in the house with us, to be under instruction, that, we have no difficulty in keeping them at their lessons: They feel pleasure and delight in reading, when once they are able to understand.

[17 October 1836]
Mond 17th All the natives came up this morning. About 70 in number. They hunted Mrs Watson and myself from place to place, continually crying out Give - give. Tobacco - Pipes- Blankets - Wheat - Beef &c &c. So cunning are they, that, when I have supplied their wants they will frequently take the advantage of my absence, to procure more from Mrs Watson. Some among them are anxious to take away three of our females: so that anxious as we are to embrace every opportunity of instructing them, we never have an accession of numbers on the Establishment, without an increase of trouble and anxiety. From dear bought, and painful experience, I am confirmed in the opinion, I long ago formed, that those who are under religious instruction, ought, if possible, to have no communication whatever, with natives who are constantly wandering about.
Our cuckoo clock was a subject of general admiration to the natives, who had not, previously, seen it. The men went over to Ngannima, but the females remained to attend family worship. Gungin, harassed no doubt by the other natives respecting our females, has been very insolent to day. This youth, though, often apparently in trouble about his soul, when vexed is very insolent.

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Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.5.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-316


[18 October 1836]
Tuesd 18th The natives came up from Ngannima, this morning; but some of the men passed on into the Bush to look for Honey. We have to pay dearly for children that we have under our care. Ngarrang Bartharai, the father of our little Fanny, is extremely troublesome when in this neighbourhood. He thinks that because we have a child belonging to him, that, we must give him every thing he desires. Not only would he have us to supply his own wants; but he brings up other natives saying, they are "his brothers"; however we happily are acquainted with most of their relatives: so that we can repel such false statements. But they are extremely troublesome under those circumstances. This time, I have given to Bartharai, a Razor, a Pocket Knife, a Blanket, Wheat - Beef - Tobacco &c &c and yet in my absence he came to Mrs Watson saying he was going away, and must have this article and the other, that, he could not wait for Mr Watson. It is increditable, the expense that is incurred on this mission from the habits of the natives. When here, all their wants must be supplied by us, and it is no small quantity that will satisfy them. Lady Grey came to day and expressed her anxious desire to remain; but we gave her no encouragement. She had not forgotten to say grace before meat, and when the children rose up for that purpose, she said "I know this long time ago." The native females went, after dinner, to the river to bathe, after they returned, one of them came to my study door, I said to her well have you bathed? She replied "yes." Then you are clean now. "yes" I said outside; but you don't mind about inside being clean. You have no desire to have a clean heart. She hung down her

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.6.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-317


head, and said "yes I do." I told her in what way she was to obtain a new heart. And in the evening she left all the other females and came to the house, saying that she wanted to say prayers. We entertain hopes of this female's conversion from her evident tenderness of conscience, and the attention which she give to religious instruction. She would live with us; but her husband compels her to go about with him. I was this evening reading the Missionary Register to our children, when one of them, who is often naughty and occasions us much mental anxiety, turned round and wept all the time. She is guilty of telling falsehood, a practice very common among the aborigines, and yet she is frequently melted down under instruction. We have several natives here very ill. One of them Sally is always ill when she comes. This evening, on going to the camp, about 9 o'clock I found Jemmy, Sally's husband, with a blazing bough in his hand, beating the ground near to his wife, and blowing very strongly with his mouth. I enquired what he was doing, and was informed, that he was driving away the evil spirit (Wandong) away, which had caused her illness. I spoke with him on the subject, asking if he had seen Wandong there? He replied "no." I then spoke to him of the "evil Spirit" of which he had heard much before. He conversed very freely on the subject; but continued beating the ground, and blowing.

[20 October 1836]
Thurs 20th One of the elderly females, who was present while I catechising the children to day, was much affected: but did not say much when I endeavoured to converse privately with her, afterwards.

[22 October 1836]
Sat 22 Many of the natives have gone away, about 30 remain here.

[23 October 1836]
Sund 23rd Not more than 15 natives at Church to day.

[30 October 1836]
Sund 30th About 30 Natives at Church to day. I preached to them in their own language. There were only two men, and they sat in a corner with their faces to the wall, and their backs towards the females. These men are at least 40 years of age; but the men never like to be

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.7.
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MS page no: 2-318


present among many females. They say, they are ashamed. Some who had never attended Divine Service before, seemed to be much astonished at what they saw and heard.

[31 October 1836]
Mond 31st Several natives assisted in washing sheep, to day.

[1 November 1836]
Tues Nov 1st The natives employed as yesterday. One because he could not receive any Rum left us in the midst of our work. This evening, he was led up to the mission house in a state of intoxication, shouting out loudly, and calling for me. It appears that when he could not obtain Rum from us, he went to a Rum seller, and got sufficient to drown his reason, and almost to render useless, all his bodily powers.

[2 November 1836]
Wednes 2nd The native that was intoxicated last evening is very ill to day, and no wonder, for it is said, that the article sold in this neighbourhood, under the name of Rum is extremely deleterious.

[4 November 1836]
Friday 4 I rode out this afternoon; but had not been more than a quarter of an hour, when I was fetched home, on account of an old man, a Blacksmith, having had an attack of Parallassys [sic] which took away the entire use of one side, from his head down to his foot.[19] Having done what I could for the old man, I mounted my horse but was presently called back to see another sick man, who with difficulty had ridden 3 miles. I found him scarcely able either to speak or breathe; and as I had no medicines proper for him, I wrote to his master who has a good supply by him.

[Saturday 5 November 1836]
Sat 5th I have been told that the sick man, who came here yesterday, is much swollen and becoming Black.

[6 November 1836]
Sund 6th The man who came here on Friday is dead. Nothing can be more deplorable than the conduct of numbers of Europeans in this colony, and their wretchedness consequent on their conduct. By their licentiousness they become diseased, then 

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.8.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-319


Blue Vitriol,[20] and Corrodine Sublimate,[21] with similar virulent poisons, are the medicines to which they immediately have recourse. It is not then to be wondered at, if death be frequently the result. Our old Blacksmith appears to be much affected with his state as a sinner. He has wept and prayed much to day. Preached to about 30 Natives to day, whose attention would lead to the hope that they not only understood, but also felt the importance of the subject.

[13 November 1836]
Sun 13th Preached to between 30 and 40 natives to day.

[16 November 1836]
Wednes 16th I was told, this morning, that natives, from a short distance, were coming to fight with those of Wellington Valley; but as the number of those who were said to be coming is very small, and they are generally on friendly terms with ours I did no thing much of it. What then was my astonishment, on coming from the Bush about 6 o'clock this evening, to see about Two hundred, near the mission house, standing in battle array with all their weapons of war, their spears pointed, and ready for an attack. The number of our natives present was very small. I told them that this ground was sacred, and no fighting could be permitted. But they appeared deaf to all I said. One apparently full of self importance, had much to say respecting his having been at Bathurst, - how Englishmen did when men were brought before a magistrate - how the land "all about" belonged to the natives, and that I was not to mind. I had already learnt that many of these were wild natives, and had come from a distance of 100 miles, I was therefore more determined to let them know that I was a peacemaker. I had to ride up and down the ranks of the enemy, and occasionally to knock down a spear already pointed: while our own natives were continually

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.9.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-320


calling out "Mr Watson keep at outside the spears will hit you - the Bargans will hit you." However I hazarded the danger and succeeded in preventing any fighting at that time; but not before I was so hoarse with shouting that I could scarcely speak. I was able to say all that was necessary, on this occasion of their fighting, in their own language. They promised to be at peace and to encamp together. In about 2 hours afterwards I rode to the Camp: there were about 100 different fires. I was surprised to hear so many strangers accost me with "well Parson" "Well Parson" as they had never before seen me. I spoke to them respecting religion: some listened, and, asked questions: others laughed. Some said that "they did not understand about soul; but they understand tobacco and pipes." Some of them observed, "Mr Watson Black fellow all about very much frightened of you, they be all like Pikkininnies to you, very soon you make give over fighting; horse belonging to you very much angry too, very much he kick backwards." They all promised that there should be no fighting.

[17 November 1836]
Thursd 17th The natives came up this morning promising to be peaceable. I endeavoured to impress, upon their minds, the truths of religion; but they had no ears for those things, they were hungry and wanted food. In the afternoon seeing some natives running up from the river, and from that inferring that all was not right, I immediately mounted my horse and rode up, when I found them engaged in hot war: their poisoned spears were flying in all directions, and their tremendous clubs were in full play. One of our Natives (Charley) had his skull fractured and part of his brain appeared in the hair: his ribs were also much bruised; however I instantly rushed in among them, and after much to do, succeeded in stopped the

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.10.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-321

engagement. Some of enemies appeared to be going away, but they only went round a large hill at some distance, and returned, dancing, singing, shouting and menacing: in a word, using every means in their power to provoke our natives to a renewal of hostilities; however they did not succeed. I never saw men more determined for any thing, than these new come natives were to day. I could compare them to nothing but madmen. It appears that some of our natives having come over from Ngannima, to day, was the occasion of the fighting; for the strange natives who came from a distance were fully bent on killing at least six of our natives King Bobby, Geordie, Dr. Charley, Darby, Lumpy Bobby and another, and some of those who came up to day were of the number. Several of our natives were wounded and I desired them to come and have their wounds dressed, they said, they would come when it was dark. Our natives begged of me, several times, not to go away, as they knew the others would not keep their promise of being peaceable. However they all seemed to be reconciled and encamped together as last night. It appears that in the heat of the contest, Darby, (a native 6 feet high and stout in proportion) one of those to be slain, escaped from the field of battle and made the best of his way to the Mission-House. Our girls on seeing him approach painted all over his face and body, carrying his weapons, and running with all possible speed, not knowing or recognising him, ran to Mrs Watson, "crying out, Black fellow coming Black fellow coming, running very fast." Mrs Watson told them to come in, into an inner room while she went to see what was the matter: for she apprehended that the wild natives were coming to attack the Mission House and take away the girls. Having secured the girls, who appeared to be much alarmed, Mrs Watson was going to the door to look out, when what should present itself to her notice but the painted face of a native (between

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.11.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-322

the partly opened door and the door post) and a number of spears and, other weapons half way in. Mrs Watson did not at first recognise him, and she felt some alarm, when, he panting exclaimed, "Black fellow come up, Black fellow come up, plant, plant, where is Mr Watson." However he was soon known and having convinced Mrs Watson as much by his trembling as by his expressions that he wanted to be concealed from the natives who were seeking to kill him, he was put into a private room and shut up. But he could not rest. He kept continually rising up and saying "where is Mr Watson? You go fetch him. No, No, you sit down by me, don't let Black fellow come." What a scene was this! A stout, able, Savage, seeking for safety, and reposing his confidence for protection in a nervous European female. When I arrived at home he was very anxious for me to accompany him to the Camp, but I refused and endeavoured to dissuade him; but when it was dark he went by himself.

[18 November 1836]
Frid 18th Many of the natives came up to the house, this morning: I began to address a few; and as soon as the others heard me speaking in their own language, they came up and listened with attention. Eight of the wounded came up to have their wounds dressed, some were speared and others severely bruised. Old King Bogin, who I suppose is the leader of the hostile forces, came up to the house this evening: he said much about his endeavours to prevent them fighting; but they will say any thing, to suit their purpose or serve their present interests. He came up with us to Wellington Valley in 1832 and remained sometime with us. He remembered my having cured the arm and side of his wife, whom he had at that time most cruelly beaten: he also mentioned many, whom he heard I had cured, when very ill. He enquired how many boys and girls we had, I told him: he then said why do you not give Betty to Kabon Jackey, who is brother to her husband that died. I told him that I knew Jackey was not brother to Neddy, (the name of Betty's husband) and a long time ago, when they were all with me

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.12.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-323


and Neddy was ill, I went to the Camp and found Betty sitting down with Jackey and his other yinnar, and on enquiring the reason I learnt that Jackey had said, unless Neddy gave Betty to him he would kill him, and so the sick man was compelled to let her go, and that I made Jackey give her back to her own husband, with whom she continued to live until his death, which happened at this place last year: as also that Betty came to live with us of her own accord, and that Jackey had no claim on her. King Bogin replied "Oh! Oh! that is the way it is; but that fellow did not tell me that way." He also asked "what for want you females to sit down with you?" I told him that we might teach them to read the holy Book; and to know God and the way to heaven, he answered "well, that very good for boys, no good, no good at all for girls, but I am very hungry and must have some Flour and Beef and Tea and Sugar and Tobacco, I must have now I want to go to camp."

[19 November 1936]
Saturd 19th This morning, early, Darby, Tommy and a yinnar were seen running hastily by our house, towards Ngannima: in a short time the natives were seen coming up from the Camp, and from their motions it was evident that there was some discomfiture among them. Mrs Watson went over to the hut of one of our men to enquire if any native had come up, in order that she might ascertain what was the matter. On her returning, she met Kabon Jackey and Kabon Billy, with their weapons, and in a great rage they asked where is Darby? that fellow steal yinnar plant it plant it. Mrs Watson did not understand whether they meant that Darby was planted or was to be planted. She told them that was very wrong of Darby to take the yinnar after he had been protected here yesterday. Billy said, very hastily, "don't you talk that way, Black fellow all come up, want to kill him." In a short time all our natives came running up to the Mission House and the others making advances after them; presently our large room which had just been

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.13.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-324


washed and got ready for the Sabbath was nearly filled by about 40 females who had rushed into the kitchen, for refuge, crying and trembling: Then the men came one after another both for their weapons which the females generally carry. The yinnars not daring to make their appearance kept throwing out their weapons saying to Mrs Watson you give that to Bobby and that to Tommy and so on for all their husbands, and it was very well Mrs Watson escaped without injury, for in their fright they threw them down any way. I learnt at first that Darby and Tommy had taken a yinnar from those who had lately, come up and being well persuaded that nothing would enrage a native more than such a circumstance, I knew it was no time for trifling, as all our natives had fled to our house for safety; I therefore had all our arms got into a state of readiness, that we might be prepared for an attack. However the hostile tribes did not come up, only Ngarrang Bartharai whose yinnar had been taken away. Bartharai has a yinnar whose name is Kitty about 12 years of age and the natives said so much about Kitty having been taken away that I was some time before I understood that it was not that one, but another. Acting under this erroneous impression, I offered to go with Bartharai to Ngannima to see Tommy and Darby, and to procure his yinnar for him, but he refused. It appears that sometime ago Tommy lent or gave his own yinnar Kitty to Ngarrang Bartharai, and that she this morning, in the absence of Bartharai, had run away from the other yinnars, and come to Tommy, who with Darby immediately set off with her to Ngannima. The hostile tribes took their departure homewards, but our natives said it was only deception, and that they would come round another way and take them by surprise, either in the day or by night. They therefore have been upon the watch all day; but this evening have all gone into the Bush, they say to fetch more natives up. So the place that, in the morning was literally covered with natives cannot now produce one of them.

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Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.14.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-325


[20 November 1836]
Sund 20th Old Bobbugal and three of our boys returned this morning, they say that the others have gone to seek up other natives. I hope this is not the case. I attempted to catechise our children this morning; but their minds had been so much engaged about the other natives lately, that they could answer only a few questions.

[23 November 1836]
Wednes 23rd Commenced reaping, to day. I told the boys that they must go with me and work, "very well" said one of them "then I shall eat four times a day." I had seven of them with me and they did very well.

[26 November 1836]
Sat 26th Natives are employed daily with me in the field. As I was passing by the camp, this evening, one of our youngest boys called out "Mr Watson Mr Watson Buonaparte does not believe." I enquired what he did not believe: the boy replied "He does not believe that God made Tarpaulin." I said that was right, and then explained the matter to them, how God makes the article, of which Tarpaulins are manufactured, to grow, and that men prepared it and weaved it. Yes yes said Buonaparte I told you so. They frequently ask us respecting individuals, whether they be christians, and will go to heaven: we generally endeavour to avoid giving direct answers to such questions; but they are by no means backward in attaching to persons, those marks of ungodliness which they see them evidence in their lives, and inferring therefrom that such persons are not good and will not go to heaven.

[27 November 1836]
Sundy 27th Had a large congregation of Europeans at church to day. Only our 10 children and old Bobbugal natives here.

[28 November 1836]
Mond 28th Some of our native children are dangerously [ill] of the Influenza which is very prevalent here. One of the children 4 years of age is ill, and was laid down in a room by herself; but as soon as she heard the other children begin to pray she knelt down repeated with them and said Amen as loudly as any of them. Mrs Watson is also suffering from the same complaint

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Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.15.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-326


[30 November 1836]
Wednes 30th Mrs Watson, in addition to suffering under the Influenza, was to day attacked with spasms and faintings. All our children are ill: as well as several other natives and many Europeans. Every thing lies in my hands, not an individual to render me any assistance; to cheer up my sinking spirits. Blessed be God, when all created streams are dry, His fulness [sic] is the same.

[1 December 1836]
Thursd Dec 1st About 30 natives came up to day most of them very ill, they say that many natives are dying down the river. Mrs Watson no better than yesterday.

[4 December 1836]
Sund Dec 4th Was not able to have service in the Church, on account of Mrs Watson's illness; but addressed the natives in the hut, in the afternoon: some of them appeared to be the subject of religious impressions. May the Lord seal instruction on their hearts.

[7 December 1836]
Wednes 7th Mrs Watson, through mercy, is slowly recovering she is able to sit up for a short time. Our native children are also better.

[8 December 1836]
Thursd. 8th Mrs Watson so far recovered, that I could leave her to day, and take our eight natives with me to reap. The youths were employed in fetching water &c with the Dray, for the Establishment. The female who last came to live with us, has been pretending, by conjuration, to cure one of the sick females in the house, during the night. She pretended to have felt a small wandong (evil spirit) creeping about, by swallowing of which she derived power to extract a stone from the body of the sick person. Their superstitions are truly awful. After speaking to her in the presence of the other females, I directed one of the girls to read such portions of Scripture, as denounced evil against Witches &c.

[11 December 1836]
Sund 11th Preached to about 20 natives to day. Many are wandering about, and many are sick, though several are recovered.

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Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.16.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-327


[16 December 1836]
Frid 16th Our natives have been employed reaping wheat all the week. This evening Two of our females, Betty and Mary the last that came to us have gone away. It is only what we have anticipated, for some time, from the manner in which we have been teased about them. Mary had scarcely been three months with us, and from not knowing a single letter of the Alphabet had become able to read very fairly in the Prayer Book. Betty had been more than six months an inmate of our house, she was of a very quiet and peaceable temper, and during the whole time she has been here, we have not had any occasion to reprove her for using improper language, and had she been let alone, she would have continued with us. From the conversation I heard between Mary and another yinnar who came up to the house in the afternoon, I expected that some plan was being formed.

[17 December 1836]
Sat 17th The Frocks and Handkerchiefs, in which the two females were dressed when they went away last evening, were found this morning a short distance in the Bush. I went to the natives camp this morning by sun rise; but did not see the runaways. I made no enquiry after them, as I was certain of not being told the truth. There are about 40 natives at the camp. Not one native male or female has come up from the camp to day.

[18 December 1836]
Sund 18th Preached to Twelve natives from 1 Tim: 1 Ch. 15v.[22] The other natives cannot be approached.

[19 December 1836]
Mond. 19th Two of our native youths have been wandering about all the day: this evening one of them, George, came up very boldly and asked for his supper, I told him that I could not give food to natives who neither attended to instruction nor worked. He said "Black fellow not that way when born you know, he not work, he not learn." I told him that, wild natives lived on opossum &c and if he wanted to live as a wild native he must look out for Wild natives food. That if he wished to have his wants supplied here, he must either attend School, or work. In a short time afterwards, Gungin came to Mrs Watson and said "I must have my cloaths."

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.17.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-328


Mrs Watson asked him why he wanted them. He replied, "Mr Watson is very angry with me and I cannot bear that." I had not seen him, but having been absent all the day, when he knew we wanted his assistance, he was conscious of having done wrong: and George having told him what I had been saying, he applied my words to himself, and was miserable; but Mrs Watson soon talked him out of his angry mood, and all was right with him again. Kabbarin, who had been in the Bush, came up a few weeks ago, asking for a Basket to bring some fine talking Birds in, which he would send to the Governor: we let him have one, though we placed little dependence on what he said. Last week on coming from the field our girls found the Basket in a tree. Kabbarin has returned, saying that he could not get any Birds. I said nothing to him respecting the Basket, as I knew it would not do any good, and only afford occasion for his telling falsehoods.

[20 December 1836]
Tuesd 20th One of the boys had been saying that Kabbarin did get birds, and gave them to a gentleman in this neighbourhood, the youth was so angry that he threatened "to lock the boy up in the Pigeon House and to give him nothing but bread and water and perhaps not that." All the youths and other natives have been reaping wheat.

[21 December 1836]
Wednes 21st George and Gungin have been loading Wheat to day.

[23 December 1836]
Friday 23rd The natives continue working at Wheat.

[24 December 1836]
Saturd 24th It appears that the two females who lately left us, are at no great distance from this place. George and Gungin have been commissioned to tell us that they will never come back, and they appeared anxious for us to say that we did not want them; but that we would not say. All the elderly natives have gone away, and the young men also expressed a desire to go. Mrs Watson said tomorrow is Sunday and it is wrong for you to go about on that holy day. I want you to be here, and to hear of God and salvation and Heaven. Gungin said

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.18.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-329

that his father wished him to go. Mrs Watson said, well, your father does not know so much as you do; Gungin, with a sigh, said "no he does not; but perhaps we shall come to church tomorrow I don't know."

[25 December 1836]
Sunday 25th A European servant came, up to the Establishment, this morning, for medical assistance. His head and face were severely cut in several places, and he said that three of his ribs were broken. He said that the wounds had been inflicted by James Mitchell a person who, it is said sells spirits without a license, about 8 miles from this place. One of our servants met a man, almost killed, in the neighbourhood of that place yesterday. Our native youths came up and attended church to day. A Gentleman was at Church to day who informs me that two of his men were struck down, yesterday, by lightning, one was killed on the spot, the other is much injured. Kabbarin when speaking of the circumstances, afterwards in the Mission House, said, "yes, yes, I know plenty about that place, plenty wickedness sit down there, that dead white fellow always take yinnar, and will not let her go to camp at all. All white fellow all about very wicked now." Our Youths went this evening to Ngannima; but about 9 O'Clock Kabbarin returned in company with a native who has not been here before, and has come a distance of 70 miles.

[27 December 1836]
Tuesd 27th Read over a portion of scripture, translated into the native language as well as the church prayers, to our natives to day. The native stranger was present, and listened with much attention.

[28 December 1836]
Wednes 28th Read over as yesterday to our natives. The stranger said to me, "Why don't you go look out Black fellow long way off where I come from: very much they want to see you, plenty children they give you if you go." Kabbarin who had been among them told me the same.

[Friday 30 December 1836]
Frid 30th A European was brought in, from a station 8 miles distant, to be interred. Though the overseer lives a very short distance from the hut of the man, he says that he did not know he was ill, all yesterday. When reading the funeral service over him I had to stop and

People in WellPro Directory: Watson, Mrs

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.19.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-330


request some one of the Europeans to cast a little mould into the grave at those solemn words "Earth to earth" &c. The overseer and three or four other Europeans were present. The spiritual ignorance of persons of this class is truly lamentable, far more so that some of our instructed Aborigines. The man whom I interred to day had been drinking, previous to his death.

[31 December 1836]
Sat 31st Several natives passed through this place to day, it is said that they are gone to fight with Ngarrang Bartharai. Another European was brought in, during last night, to be interred. He was found dead in the Bush, in the neighbourhood of the dealers in Spirits: and a Magistrate who saw the body, informs me that there were marks of violence upon it. O the infatuation of men bearing the christian name in this neighbourhood. No wonder if the Aborigines; witnessing such scenes of wickedness on every hand, should turn a deaf ear to our instructions.
I have done little more in the language this Quarter, than Translating and preaching a few sermons, collecting more words, and improving by daily converse with the natives.
After a year of divers vicissitudes, the Lord has brought us to see its close; and greivously [sic] upheld us amidst innumerable conflicts and distresses, external, and internal: many have been our seasons of sorrow and trouble; but very many have been our consolations and mercies. The Lord has in his good pleasure preserved us at our post, with no more desire to abandon the scene of our labours, than in the hour on which we entered the field. We are labouring in deep darkness; but through grace Divine we are watching for the morning's light. Our retrospect though mark'd by numerous failures, and generally bearing the appearance of fruitlessness, is not more painful than many of our Christian Brethren in similar circumstances have had to experience. The Word of God, the Sword of the Spirit has found its way to the hearts of some of these heathens, it has pierced them, they have felt; and do feel the pain thereof. Shall we not adore the riches of Divine Mercy? Are not these, drops of holy promise, before the coming shower?

Diary 5: October-December 1836, p.20.
Class Mark: C N/O 92/25
MS page no: 2-331


May we not see cause to thank God, to take courage and go forward. Who or what can stand against our omnipotent Lord? He must reign till all enemies are put under his feet. Let our Christian Brethren in England only continue their holy, fervent petitions at the Throne of Grace for these poor perishing Aborigines in particular: and it is not to be doubted whether God will hear - will answer - will pour out the enlightening quickening, sanctifying influences of His eternal Spirit upon these Dry bones.
Having left behind in our beloved native land, friends almost dear as our lives, and innumerable comforts and privileges: to wander, solitary and forsaken - without a smile to cheer, or a heart to sympathise with us, to be hated by many, loved by none - to endure the vicissitudes of an unhealthy clime - to dwell where Satan has his seat - to see in every human face an enemy to our God and his cause - to have no Christian friend to counsel or advise, and often to be at a loss to know what course to steer - what plans to adopt - to labour amongst the very lowest heathens in the world, and to have impediments to our usefulness thrown in our way at every step by men of our own country - bearing the same hallowed name as ourselves. Called thus to labour and to endure: next to the consolations of the Holy Ghost nothing cheers our minds so much in this scene of sorrow and of tears, as the consideration that our dear Brethren in England are bearing us and our trials and cause in the arms of faith and prayer before our heavenly Father and thus consoled and strengthened we pursue our way.

Rev. W. Watson's Journal, 10
April to Dec. 1836.