- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Fifth Expedition
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
- Hits: 1098
Sunday, 12th May, Hawker Creek, Ashburton Range. My old horses that were out with me before look very well this morning, but the others, whose first trip of privation this has been, are looking very bad indeed. They could not have gone another night without water; it has pulled them down terribly. Yesterday, while Masters was looking for the horses, he saw what appeared to him to be a piece of wood stuck upon a tree, about two feet and a half long, sharp at both ends, broad at the bottom, and shaped like a canoe. Having pulled it down, he found it to be hollow. On the top of it were placed a number of pieces of bark, and the whole bound firmly round with grass cord. He undid it, and found the skull and bones of a child within. Mr. Kekwick brought it to me this morning for my inspection. It certainly is the finest piece of workmanship I have ever seen executed by natives. It is about twelve inches deep and ten wide, tapering off at the ends. Small lines are cut along both sides of it. It has been cut out of a solid piece of wood, with some sharp instrument. It is exactly the model of a canoe. I told him to do it up again, and replace it as it was found. If it is here when I return, I will endeavour to take it to Adelaide with me. Wind, variable. A few clouds about.