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12 December 1837 Judge Jeffcott

12 December 1837     Judge Jeffcott

In November 1837 a party including Lieutenant Hutchinson and T.B. Strangways set out to reach Encounter Bay overland. There they met with Captain Blenkinsop who had a whale fishery, and sending a crew in a whaleboat ahead by sea, they made for the Murray mouth in their bullock cart. After travelling for some distance up the river, discovering Currency Creek and holing the boat in the process and having to make temporary repairs, they returned to the mouth and found that Sir John Jeffcott, the Colonial Judge, had arrived to join the group. It was 12 December when the party set out on the return journey and it was intended that the boat should attempt to find a passage over the sandbar to the sea. Hutchinson gave up his place to Jeffcott although he tried to persuade the judge clad ‘in dress coat with suitable attenuations’ not to go. Blenkinsop was sure he could take the boat out the same way as he had come in but there was a heavy sea running and when nearly clear of the breakers a large wave swamped the rather overloaded boat and he, Jeffcott and two seamen were lost. 

H.M. Cooper, A Naval History of South Australia, Hassell, Adelaide, 1950, pp.60-1.

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