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Brunton, having been rowed ashore, a rope is
run out from the ship's stem and made fast to
one of the corner buoys. The Standard Compass
being fixed in the proper position which
it is to occupy in the ship, neither too high nor
too low, and the guns and other iron being
round about it, as they are to remain during
the voyage, the mooring ropes are adjusted,
and the ship's head is put due north.
Meanwhile, Mr. Brunton has set up a compass
ashore, and all being ready, Captain Johnson,
at a given moment, observes the bearing of
a distant objectthe Tower at Shooter's Hill
noting the bearing of the needle on board.
At that instant the pennant that floated at
the mast-head is hauled down from the truck.
This being the concerted signal, at the same
second of time the assistant ashore observed
the needle of his compass. The two instruments
vary, and the deviation of that on
board, compared with that ashore, is due to
the iron of the ship. The stern ropes are
hauled from one buoy to another, and again
made fast, the ship's head now pointing
in another direction. The observations and
the signals are repeated. Each deviation of the
ship's compass is carefully noted upon a card
previously prepared for the purpose. The
ship's stern is then hauled round to the third
outside buoy, and the compasses being again
examined, she is next hauled round to the
fourth buoy. Her head by this time has been
north, east, south, west; on each point the
deviations of her compasses have been tested,
noted, and the card shows their character and
proper adjustment. The ship has been swung.
Science has done its best for her, and the
word is given to heave anchor, for she is now
truly "Ready for Sea."


THE Litany of a Bushman on the Borders
might well run, "From native dogs, from
scabby sheep, from blacks, from droughts,
from governors' proclamations, good Lord,
deliver us."

The droughts come in their appointed
season, and the day will be, when wells
and tanks and aqueducts will redeem many
a part from the curse of periodical barrenness:
the blacks soon tame or fade before
the white man's face; unfortunately the
seat of the native dogs, and home-bred or
town-bred governing crotchets are more plentiful
in long settled than new found countries.
At any rate, I have experienced them all,
and now give the following passage of my
life for the benefit of the gentlemen "who
live at home at ease," hatching theories for
our goodHeaven help their silliness!

I had been two years comfortably settled
with a nice lot of cattle and sheep, part my
own, part on "thirds," when the people
south of me began to complain of drought.
/ had enough feed and water; the question
was, whether it would last.

I called my bullock-driver, Bald-faced
Dick, into consultation. He was laid up at
the time with a broken leg. Dick strongly
advised looking for a new station "to the

The sheep would do for months, but he
thought we were overstocked with cattle. I
had a good deal of confidence in Dick's
judgment; for he was a "first fleeter," that
is, came over with Governor Phillips in the
first fleet; had seen everything in the colony,
both good and bad; had, it was whispered,
in early years fled from a flogging master, and
lived, some said, with the blacks; others
averred with a party of Gully-rakers (cattle-
stealers); he swore horridly, was dangerous
when he had drunk too much rum, but was a
thorough Bushman; by the stars, or by sun,
and the fall of the land, could find his way
anywhere by day or night, understood all
kinds of stock, and could make bullocks
understand him. He knew every roving character
in the colony, the quality of every station, and
more about the far interior than he chose to
tell to every one. With all his coarseness, he
was generous and good-natured, and when
well paid, and fairly and strictly treated, stood
upon "Bush honour," and could be thoroughly
depended on.

Having had an opportunity of serving him
in a rather serious matter previous to his
entering my service, I was pretty sure of his
best advice.

The end of it was, for a promise of five
pounds he obtained from a friend of his a
description of a country hitherto unsettled, and
first-rate for cattle. These men, who can
neither read nor write, have often a talent for
description, which is astonishing.

Having heard a minute detail of the
"pack," and studied a sort of map drawn on
the lid of a tea-chest with a burned stick, I
decided on exploring with my overseer, Jem
Carden, and, if successful, returning for the
cattle and drags, all loaded for founding a

We only took our guns and tomahawks,
with tea, sugar, a salt tongue, and small
damper ready baked, being determined to
make long marches, starting early, camping
at mid-day, and marching again in the evening
as long as it was light.

Our first stage was only twenty-five miles to
young Marson's cattle-station. Marson was a
cadet, of a noble family, and having been too
fast at home and in India as a cavalry
subaltern, had been sent out with a fair capital
to Australia, under the idea that a fortune
was to be had for asking, and no means of
expense open in the Bush. What money he
did not leave in the bars and billiard rooms of
Sydney, he invested in a herd of six hundred
cattle; to look after these, he had four men,
whom he engaged, one because he could fight,
another because he could sing, and all because
they flattered him. With these fellows he
lived upon terms of perfect equality, with a