- Category: John McDouall Stuart - Third Expedition
- Written by John McDouall Stuart
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Sunday, 18th December, Mount Margaret. About 9 a.m. the natives made their appearance on the hill, and made signs for us to be off; they were eight in number. I found that we had camped close to a large quantity of acacia seed that they had been preparing when we arrived, but had no time to carry it away before we were on them. One old fellow was very talkative. I went towards them to try and make friends with them, but they all took to the hills. By signs I induced the old fellow to stop, and in a short time got him to come a little nearer. When I came to the steep bank of the creek he made signs for me to come no further. I showed him I had no arms with me, and wished him to come up. I could understand him so far that he wished us to go away, that they might get their seed. I thought it as well not to aggravate them, but to show them that we came as friends; and as I had completed all I had to do here, I moved the camp towards the Freeling Springs, at which they seemed very glad, and made signs for us to come back at sundown. They seemed to be a larger race than those down below; the men are tall and muscular, the females are low in stature and thin. I examined the Mount Margaret range in going along; there are a number of gum creeks coming from the north side which flow into the Neale. We searched them up and down, but could find no water. The number of channels that join them in the range is so great that it would take weeks to examine them minutely for water. We camped in one of them without water, although the country promises well for it.