One of the crew members of H M S Rattlesnake was the grandfather of Aldous Huxley. Huxley's diary gives us some lively details while Papua's from Brumer island came onboard. 

HUXLEY. TH.; assistant surgeon: H.M.S `Rattlesnake` August 18th. 1849 Brumer Island (10. 30 S, 150. 5. E)
 ''Today we have been visited by many natives coming off by relays in their catamarans and canoes. A number came on board when invited, without any hesitation, They were shown all the wonders of the ship and loaded with presents and then dismissed in the highest good humour. These are the first who have ventured on board us, although they have frequently visited the Bramble at other places. In the afternoon a catamaran came off from the large island towards the mainland with six or seven very good-looking young men. She was made of three spars lashed together, the middle one elaborately carved at its ends and painted in red and black. The spars were regularly smoothed off and flattened above as if with an adze. They had built up a little stage to hold their goods (yams, cocos, and cocoa nuts) and prevent them from being washed off by the sea, which occasionally made a clean breach over the bow-man.''



''They hauled on to a line from the cabin windows and afterwards by a stout rope let down from the jolly boat, and on being invited two or three `shinned` up the aforesaid rope and came on board. I offered my services as guide to one gentleman, and he accepted them, seeming to believe that by keeping tight hold of my hand he should be protected from any harm. I took him down into the wardroom where they happened to be sitting over their wine. They invited him to take a glass and he sat down in the arm-chair, not without some persuasion, however, as for some time he regarded the chair with very suspicious eyes – I think he looked upon it as a kind of trap. He admired the wine and wanted to give his companions some, but when we got on deck he found they had gone back to the catamaran. He wanted sadly to keep the glass, but in the present state of the butler's department that was wholly impossible.''


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