William Dampier Circumnavigation
William Dampier was a naval officer as well as being a buccaneer and a scientific observer who wrote for his audience. Dampier's book which was published in 1697 was the first world-wide travelogue in English. William Dampier was the first man to sail around the world three times. In the summer of 1863 Dampier was in Virginia and signed on with a Captain Cook who was going privateering to the South Seas. Their first stop was the Cape Verde Islands where the ship was careened for a good scraping. Dampier kept a record of everything he saw and his journal was intended as an entertainment for his shipmates as well as those who loved to hear stories of far off lands.
The pirates captured a 36 gun Danish ship and put to sea again in early 1684 but straight away were stuck in the Doldrums. They finally shook them off and sailed for Magellan Straits. When they got there the westerlies did not allow them to enter the Straits and they had to go down to sixty degrees south and tack north-west to get around the horn. Seventeen days of wild storms lashed them until they finally were able to get into the Pacific Ocean. Dampier sailed for Juan Fernandez Island because it had deep harbours, timber, fresh water, and safe from the Spanish.
After two weeks rest in Juan Fernandez they captured three merchantmen which alerted the spanish to their presence. Dampier and the pirates then sailed for the Galapagos Islands where they unloaded stolen flour for later use if needed. Dampier sailed north looking for booty and in July 1864 Cook died and Edward Davis was voted on as captain. Soon they had joined forces with another group of pirates led by Captain Swan in the Cygnet. Swan was a reluctant pirate and what he really wanted to do was to get away from pirate waters, divest himself of his troublemakers, and resume legitimate trade.
Dampier transferred to the Cygnet which sailed west across the Pacific. Dampier made good sailing and averaged a hundred miles a day. On twentieth of May they landed at Guam with only three days supplies left. Guam was a Spanish island so they kidnapped the priest to blackmail them into giving them provisions. They were successful and Dampier spent twelve days on Guam refitting and writing in his journals.
"The bread-fruit grows on a large tree, as big and high as out largest apple trees..."
On the Second of June the Cygnet sailed for the PHillippines island of Mindanao because it was not under Spanish control. The English were welcomed and spent six months in Mindanao. They were treated lavishly because the sultan wanted to play them off against the other European powers and keep his independence. Captain Swan was becoming tyrannical and the crew mutinied and Captain Teat took over as captain of the Cygnet. On 14 July 1867 the Cygnet sailed away from Mindao. As soon as the sailed off the pirates started fighting amongst themselves and yet another captain took over. Dampier and the Cygnet sailed across the south china sea to Canton, then onto the Gulf of Siam to the coast of Cambodia, back to the Spice Islands, and south towards Australia.
Dampier jumped ship on the 5th May 1688 when the cygnet was anchored off the Nicobar Islands to take on water. He was castaway and decided to row two hundred miles to Sumatra. On the 19th May they thought they saw Pulau We, an island off the north of Sumatra. But it turned out to be Peusangan Pasai, a mainland mountain. Dampier went to work for the East India Company at Banda Aceh and made three voyages to Madras and the Gulf of Tonkin. In july 1690 he was made master gunner at Benkulu, an English fort on the south west coast of sumatra. Dampier was fed up with Benkulu after six months and he secretly went on board the Defence which sailed on 25 january 1691.
The Defence took Dampier to the cape in Early april where he stayed for six weeks. Finally the Defence left the Cape of Good Hope on 23 May with two other english ships and they reached the Downs on 16 September. Dampier spent six years rewriting his book and published it in 1697 as "A New Voyage Round the World". It was a best seller and laid the foundation for Dampier's further voyages to Australia.