Colony at the Cape of Good Hope

(Extract of a Letter, dated off Madeira ) Aurora Transport Ship, Feb 19.

“An opportunity having offered for transmitting a hasty account of the Aurora and Brilliant transports, proceeding with settlers to the Cape of Good Hope, I feel happy in availing myself of that circumstance, with a view as well to gratify our friends in England, as to add another confirmation of the liberality of Government in our important undertaking. First, it will be necessary to state, that the two ships sail in company, and are every day within hail of each other ; the former commanded by Captain Pearson, and the latter by Captain Bothwell, who is accompanied by Lieutenant Pritchard, as agent to both vessels.

“We sailed from Gravesend on. Our course down Channel was most favourable, and the weather has hitherto been propitious. No death, disease, or serious accident has occurred in either ship and blooming health and vigour now rapidly succeed the langour produced by a sudden transition to a new element. Provisions, consisting of flour, currants, suet[?] oatmeal, peas, butter, cheese, tea, sugar, biscuit, salt pork, and beef, of excellent quality, are liberally supplied, together with a proper allowance of rum, vinegar, mustard and spices. The ships are fitted up in every respect comfortably and commodiously, and the most perfect harmony prevails, if we except bickerings amongst the old women about fractured teapots and mislaid culinary articles. The attention paid to the comfort of the passengers, and more especially to that of the women and children, by the Captains, and the agent (Mr Pritchard), is highly creditable to the instructions received from Government.

“Although I do not sail in the same ship Captain Bothwell. I have had ample proofs of the kindness and humane liberality which he shews to the passengers in the Brilliant. Captain Pearson is an active, intelligent officer, who has been 23 years in the Transport Service under Government : he has sailed to almost every part of the world, and Algoa Bay, our place of destination, is quite familiar to him.

“It may be egotism to speak of myself; but I trust I may be excused in boasting, that of the crew and 240 passengers, not one is seriously indisposed at present, and wishing, with heartfelt sincerity, to my friends in England, happiness, peace, and tranquility, in as good health as I now enjoy, long may they live, long live the Constitution: and while on Fish River or Orange River we encounter the difficulties incident to new colonists, may England and South Africa be ever united by the ties of mutual friendship–the one affording her parental arms, and the other mindful of her filial duty. P. Campbell., Surgeon.

Citation: Aberdeen Journal (Aberdeen, United Kingdom), 02 August 1820, available at the Scissors and Paste Database,