August 28, 2007

10 February 1807, by Elizabeth Macarthur

HMS Buffalo
Well, we joined the throng lining the shores to wave fare-the-well to the all our friends – I shed tears for Mr. Marsden too, at the end, for an acquaintance of fifteen years is not easily put aside. He has our wool and may he have good fortune in the voyage and in England. The Kings are heartbroken, sad to past bearing, but it is for the best for them – how the crowd did cheer the Governor when he appeared on deck! The band played throughout the afternoon and many of us took our carriages and continued down the Harbour, waving and calling out, until finally we could go no further and the wide ocean was before us. The Buffalo passed the Heads and bore north, all its flags a’flutter, and the shore battery at South head let out its final hoorar, a fine plume of smoke and the sound of the report. And so an age passes – back Home it would be “The King is dead, Long Live the King” but not so here, and it is with considerable trepidation that we view the future.
We returned to Parramatta on Sunday night and now seem dulled, enervated and listless, and I know John is very concerned for our grant and his relations with authority. The departure of the Kings appears to signal an end to an order that we worked so hard at, and now face an uncertain future.

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