CHAPTER 14. 1774 TO 1775. SECOND VOYAGE CONCLUDED.
Soon after Cook's arrival in London, Furneaux handed him his Journal of the proceedings of the Adventure from the time of their separation off the coast of New Zealand. They were blown off the land near Table Cape in the beginning of November 1773, again sighting it near Cape Pallisser, only to be blown off again, their sails and rigging suffering severely. They put into Tolago Bay for temporary repairs and water, and left again on the 13th, but had to put back till the 16th, and even then the weather was so bad that they did not reach Queen Charlotte's Sound till the 30th, when the bottle left by Cook was at once found, telling they were six days too late. They pushed on as rapidly as possible with the refit, and then were further delayed by finding a large quantity of the bread required rebaking, but they were ready to sail by 17th December. Mr. Rowe was sent out with a boat to get a supply of vegetables, and the ship was to have sailed the following day, but the boat did not return. Burney was then sent off with a party of marines in search, and after a time discovered the missing men had been all killed and some of them eaten by the Maoris. Portions of the bodies were found and identified - Rowe's hand, by an old scar, Thomas Hill's hand, had been tattooed in Otaheite; Captain Furneaux's servant's hand; and midshipman Woodhouse's shoes were found, and a portion of the boat. The natives who had these remains were fired on, but Burney could take no further steps, for he estimated there were fifteen hundred of the natives near the place. Furneaux believed that the attack was unpremeditated as the Maoris had been quite friendly, and both he and Cook had been at the place during their previous visit. He concluded that some sudden quarrel had arisen and the boat's crew had been incautious.
On his next voyage Cook obtained an account of the affair from the natives, when they said that the crew was at dinner and some of the Maoris attempted to steal some bread and fish, whilst one tried to get something from the boat which had been left in charge of the Captain's black servant. The thieves were given a thrashing, and a quarrel arose, during which two muskets were discharged and two natives were shot. The Maoris then closed in and killed all the sailors immediately. The Yorkshire Gazette of 4th June 1887 states that it was reported that a midshipman escaped the massacre, and after many wanderings reached England in 1777. If this improbable story is true he must have been Mr. Woodhouse, whose shoes were found, for he was the only midshipman in the boat.
On 23rd December the Adventure sailed, but owing to contrary winds did not get away from the coast for some days. She stood south-east till 56 degrees South was reached, and then the cold being extreme and the sea high, her course was set for the Horn, reaching as high as 61 degrees South with a favourable wind. Stores were running short, so after an unsuccessful search for Cape Circumcision she sailed for Table Bay, and having refitted, again left on 16th April for England, and dropped her anchor at Spithead on 14th July 1774.
Mr. Forster states that this second voyage of Cook cost 25,000 pounds, but does not give the source of his information.