On this day in 1769…

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On his first voyage around the world, Captain James Cook and the crew of the Endeavour arrived at Tahiti, to prepare for the transit of Venus in June. This is a digital copy of the journal kept by the naturalist onboard, Joseph Banks, courtesy of the State Library of New South Wales. Banks’ entry for 13 April begins:

“This morn early came to an anchor in Port Royal bay King George the thirds Island. Before the anchor was down we were surrounded by a large number of Canoes who traded very quietly and civily, for beads cheifly, in exchange for which they gave Cocoa nuts Bread fruit both roasted and raw some small fish and apples…”

This was only the third time that Europeans had visited Tahiti (the second, as far as Cook, Banks and the rest of the Endeavour’s men knew).

Via acms.sl.nsw.gov.au

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