Mutiny on the Bounty

Mutiny on the Bounty
The Mutiny on the Bounty has become a famous story, leading to many books, movies, and songs. The HMS Bounty was a small, three masted (had three wooden poles to hold up the sails), fully rigged, sailing ship. The "Bounty" became famous when the crew (seamen) mutinied (took over) the ship on April 28, 1789.
The ship.
The ship was built in Hull, England in 1784 and was first called "Bethia". In 1787 the ship was rebuilt to carry breadfruit trees. Heat and water were added to the cabins so the trees would survive in cold weather. The British government was hoping the breadfruit trees growing wild in Tahiti could be grown in Jamaica. This would provide cheap food for the slaves working on the sugar farms. The ship was very small - 90 feet 10 inches (27.7 metres) long and 24 feet 4 inches (7.4 metres) wide. The tallest mast was 53 feet (16.1 metres) high..
The "Bounty" was captained by Lieutenant William Bligh and he took command on August 16, 1787. On December 23, 1787, "Bounty" set off on the long trip to Tahiti. On the journey, William Bligh tried to go around Cape Horn. He tried for over a month but bad weather and winds stopped the ship. The "Bounty" was turned around and went the longer way around the Cape of Good Hope.
The "Bounty" reached Tahiti on October 25, 1788. She had been at sea for ten months. The crew stayed for five months and lived on the island. They collected 1015 breadfruit plants. The crew were very happy living in Tahiti and Fletcher Christian fell in love with a Tahitian girl named Maimiti. They did not want to have another long journey and go back to England.
Image:Mutiny HMS Bounty.jpg|thumb|Bligh and 18 sailors are left at sea
The "Bounty" left Tahiti on April 4, 1789, on the way to Jamaica. On April 28, near the Friendly Islands, Fletcher Christian led the mutiny (take over). Bligh and 18 sailors were left at sea in a small boat, while Christian and the "Bounty" went back to Tahiti. Christian and a small group of sailors, 11 Tahitian women, and 6 Tahitian men then went to the remote Pitcairn Island. After they arrived they took everything they could from the ship. A sailor called Matthew Quintal, burned and destroyed the "Bounty" on January 23, 1790.
Pitcairn Island.
Pitcairn Island is a remote island in the Pacific Ocean. The Polynesians knew about the island and people had once lived there. There was nobody living on Pitcairn when it was discovered by an English sailor, Philip Carteret on July 2, 1767. He made a mistake and marked it on the map 200 miles from its real location. The people from the "Bounty" had the remote island to themselves. There was a lot of fighting between the new settlers. Fletcher Christian, 4 other mutineers and all 6 of the Tahitian men were killed. One of the 4 surviving mutineers fell off a cliff while drunk. Matthew Quintal was killed by the remaining 2 mutineers after he attacked them. When the American seal-hunting ship "Topaz" visited the island in 1808 they found only 1 mutineer, John Adams, still alive along with 9 Tahitian women. In 1856, the British government moved all the island people to Norfolk Island. Most stayed on Norfolk, but about 22 people found their way back and their descendants still live on Pitcairn. Norfolk has about 1000 "Bounty" descendants, which is about half its population.
Lieutenant William Bligh was able to sail the small boat 6500 km back to Batavia. He returned to England and reported the mutiny to the Admiralty on March 15, 1790. On November 7, 1790, the HMS "Pandora" was sent to Tahiti look for the "Bounty" and to bring back the mutineers for punishment. The "Pandora" was able to capture the mutineers left on Tahiti, but could find no sign of the group that was hiding on Pitcairn. The "Pandora" was wrecked on the way back to England.
The following list tells what happened to the crew of the "Bounty".
From the 19 left in the small boat, only 12 got back safely to England
This map shows the journey of the "HMS Bounty".1. The "Bounty" arrives at Adventure Bay Bruny Island, Tasmania after a long sea journey, August 21, 1788 2. The "Bounty" arrives at Tahiti October 26, 1788. The Bounty leaves Tahiti on April 4, 1789 3. Visits the island of Palmerston. 4. Visits the island of Tofua.5. The mutiny, April 28, 1789. Christian's travels with Bounty.6. Tubai, then back to Tahiti July 7, 1789. 7. Back to Tubai, July 16, 1789. 8. Return to Tahiti September 22 1789, and leave the next day. 9. Visit the island of Tongatabu, November 15 1789.10. Arrive Pitcairn Island January 15, 1790. The Bounty burned January 23, 1790. Bligh's travel in the small boat16. Tonga 17. Arrive Batavia

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