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1-150 (Text)

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addressee author,male,Bethel, W.*,un
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Ingleton, 1988
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DREADFUL Mutiny on board the Chapmen Convict ship
Captain Drake, bound for Botany Bay, by which 34 Convicts lost their lives, in their endeavours to seize the Vessel; an account of the capture of the Ringleaders; and the Evidence at length of Michael Collins, one of the said Convicts.
It was stated some time since on the authority of a letter which had been sent from a Gentleman who had sailed in the CHAPMAN Convict Ship, from Cove, dated at sea in May last, that a Mutiny had broken out among the Convicts in that ship, which was put down by force, and that some of them in consequence were shot, and others dangerously wounded. The following particulars of the circumstances was given in the evidence of one of the Convicts, in the presence of the Officers of the Ship: - Michael Collins, Convict, sworn.
Q. To the best of your recollection, when did you know that the convicts intended to take the ship? - A. Second day after leaving St. Jago.
Q. What did the convicts intend to do with the ship, if they got possession of her? - A. To take her to America.
Q. Who was the first person that mentioned taking the ship? - Francis Murphy.
Q. Did you take any oath? - A. Yes.
Q. Do you remember the words of the oath? - A. Yes; to be true and loyal, and not to deceive each other, as it was the Convicts' intention to take the ship, and murder the crew and guard, and every one on board except the Chief Mate.
Q. Do you know, if they had succeeded in taking the ship, which of them was to be Captain and Officers? - A. Yes; J. Flinn to be Captain's brother and sailing Captain; J. Morrison to be Captain, and wear his clothes; Murphy to be Doctor, and wear his clothes.
Q. Did you ever hear them talk of their wicked design? - A. Yes, frequently; that they were to be officers, and that they were only to keep one hundred convicts in irons, to make it appear that all was right in the event of being boarded by any ship at sea.
Q. What was the punishment, if any refused the oath? - A. To be stiffled with blankets, quartered, and hove out of the port-holes.
Q. Do you know if any of the ship's company assisted the convicts with articles to help them in their plot? - A. Yes; I know that Nelson and Crawley, sailors of the ship, handed down from deck, two bars of iron, two knives, a carpenter's hammer, and long nails.
Q. Did you ever hear what use they were to be made of? - A. Yes; to be put on pieces of wood, to answer as spears.
Q. Do you know the plan by which the convicts intended to take the ship, when Hugh Molloy was the pass-word? - A. Yes; one part of the convicts to force the fore-scuttle, with a view of drawing the attention of every one on deck to that part; while the main body was to rush aft and force their way into the guard-room, for the purpose of getting possession of the arms, and go to the powder magazine, which they intended to set on fire, if they could not make their way back to the deck, as it would be as well to be blown up, as shot by the guard.
Q. Was it not their intention to have taken the ship last Friday? - A. Yes; because there were 17 men allowed to wash on deck, who were selected out of the convicts for that purpose, all the stoutest men, besides three cooks and four swabbers, altogether 24; they were to watch the opportunity when the ship's company went down to dinner, when the sentinels were to be knocked down, and their arms taken, and then come aft, and take possession of the quarter-deck, and cut every body down that attempted to come from below.  
Q. Did they think of succeeding that day? - 
A. Yes; they made sure, for they said that day they should be employed in regulating and making out a ship's company, and guard, and on Saturday to have a grand dinner; the dinner was to be roasted turkey, roast pigs, geese, with a glass of brandy; after the goose, Port and Madeira wine.
The evidence closes here, but the annexed narration is equally authentic, and it will be seen, such was the desperation of these wretches, that they made another, but equally unsuccessful attempt to carry the vessel.
We did give them all a dinner that they could not swallow. Four and six dozen lashes to every man on Saturday; our sailors had no mercy in flogging them. - We have all the ringleader on deck chained down, several have since confessed the affair.
On Thursday evening they made their attempt forward, first by forcing up the fore scuttle; finding they could not succeed, they all made a rush to force the afthold bulk head, we then began to fire at all the hatchways, they still persisted, and sung out that they wanted no quarter; we kept firing until we found them all quiet, singing out for mercy. I went down with a party of the Guard, and demanded the dead and wounded. We found nine dead, and twenty-four wounded, who have since died of their wounds.
Second Attempt - Sunday, 27th, P.M. evening we heard them consulting in a body below the sentry fired, we then commenced for a little time until we found them all quiet. Killed one wounded six. We have not got half of them to the chain-cable, so there in no fear of their doing any more harm; if they do, we do not intend to leave a man of them alive. It was planned in Dublin prison, that whatever ship they embarked in, they would take and murder all hands. They say they have got most of their party on board the PILOT they think she will be taken. I am very much afraid of it. We have had several turn King's evidence, which corroborates Collin's evidence. I hope to see them all hung at Botany Bay. May 2, found on Francis Murphy (the head of the ringleaders, who was confined on deck with double-irons and handcuff) a pick-lock, being proved by his fellow prisoners of his intention to get himself free of the handcuff. Peter Allen, a fellow prisoner, who was wounded, was not handcuffed; he was the man to have freed him. Tied Murphy up and gave him two dozen; Allen being ill, did not punish him.
"John Jackson's evidence (one of the ringleaders) on oath, says, it was their intention to have taken the ship two days after leaving Cove, and to heave us all overboard, and to run the ship on shore; they altered their mind, saying it was too near home. He says they were all sworn coming round in the brig to take the ship they embarked in, to murder all hands, and to take the ship to America, and if they failed in taking the ship, they were sworn on their arrival at Botany, with the PILOT'S people, and as many as they could get there, to join them, to take Botany Bay. He says the Captain, Officers, ship's company and guard, were all selected out amongst them, and they made sure of succeeding in taking the ship."
W. Bethel, Printer.