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KEY WEST, Collector's Office, Feb. 7, 1848.- The new light just completed at Key West will be shown on the 10th inst. It is a first class light, and will probably be visible from a ship's deck at the distance of twenty-two miles in clear weather. It is situated 800 yards N.E. of the site of the Old Light. The bearings and courses heretofore followed for entering this port may still be observed ; but vessels approaching the Ship Channel Bar, in the day-time, will find 5 fathoms water by bringing the buoy in range with the lighthouse, and running for it. To Oliver O'Hara, Esq.
(Signed) S. R. MALLONY, Collector.
The French plan of the Riviere San Pedro, by Mons. A. Fleuriot, in 1844, is the Highland River, by Capt. Vidal, in his survey of the coast of Africa, in 1836 and 1838. The San Pedro River of Capt. Vidal, R.n., is three miles and a half to the westward of the French plan, as they have evidently mistaken the name, being precisely the same as Capt. Vidal's survey of the Highland River.
Information has been received from the Governor of New South Wales, that, an improved light is to be substituted for the present light, on Shortland Bluff, at the entrance of the Harbour of Port Phillip.
COURT MARTIAL.-On the 6th and 7th of March, a court-martial assembled on board H.M.S. Victory, to try Com. T. B. Brown, the officers and crew of Her Majesty's late sloop Snake, for the loss of that ship, on the 29th of August last, in the Mozambique Channel, when, after the evidence adduced, the Court were of opinion, " That the charge of want of care bad been proved against the Commander and Mr. P. Chown, the master, both of which officers were sentenced to lose one year of their respective ranks."
SHEERNESS, February 22nd.—The following Order has been issued by the Commander :
“ Many ordinary seamen, paid off from H.M. ships with good certificates, having been rejected at the naval rendezvous, as well as by individual officers raising men for their respective ships; the Lords Commissioners of the Ad. miralty have directed it to be publicly made known that, any ordinary seaman, or others, on presenting themselves at the office of the Commanderin-chief, who have good certificates, and are fit for the service, will be received, and permitted to enter for any of H.M, ships and vessels, where there are vacancies, until further orders."
EXAMINATION OF THE COAST OF THE MALAY PENINSULA, FROM Pulo
MUTIARA TO Pulo PANJANG, IN SEARCH OF COAL DEPOSITS, IN
Steamer, “ Hooghly." On the 29th of October, Colonel Low, having embarked, I steained from Pinang Harbour to the northward, passing within the Lánkáwí group of islands, and at 3 P.M. on the 30th, came to an anchor in 2 fathoms water, on the east side of Pulo Mutiara, in lat. 7° 21 N., for the purpose of sounding across a spit of sand that runs out from the main land, and forms a low point on the east side of the island. On the 31st, we examined Pulo Mutíárá, with the boats at low water, but nothing that indicated coal was to be seen. On the afternoon of the 1st of November, finding there was just water enough for the Hooghly to cross the spit of sand, I steamed to the northward for seven miles, until we deepened our water to 4 fathoms, close to very high limestone rocks. We anchored here for the night. Early on the morning of the 2nd, I manned two boats, Colonel Low proceeding in one, and myself in the other, and pulled in different directions for the main land, when several miles of coast were examined. The water, along the coast here is very shallow, with a clear sandy bottom. The land, for some distance in, is sandy, and the jungle is not very thick, the trees being mostly what the Malays call Káyu Glám. The trees grow at a good distance from each other, with little or no underwood. Here, I am sorry to say, no indications of coal were to be seen. On the afternoon both boats met, when we returned to the steamer, weighed, and steamed to the northward, passing Sungei Káyu Kumuning, which on a former occasion, I had visited with Colonel Low, in the boats of the Hooghly.
At 4 P.M. we came to in 2 fathoms water, about a quarter of a mile off a point of land called Tajong Patong. This point is rocky, of a moderate height, and has the appearance of an island, but it is joined to the low swampy land on the coast. It was here that the gun-boat got a sample of coal. This point lies in lat. 7° 37' 12' N., and is distant from the fort point at Pinang, 155 miles, in about a N.N.W. direction. On landing on Tajong Patong, we found several Siamese, who stated, they had been sent from Tráng, by orders from the Rajah Ligor, to collect all the coal they could get, and send it across the country from Tráng to Ligor, as the Rajah required the whole for his own use. They then inquired if we had come to take the coal, adding that they had orders to guard it. When I demanded to see the Rajah's written orders, they said they had none. I then told the head-man that I would not give him, or any body else, one dollar for all the coal I saw in their boats, or on the point, but that, as I was now here, I intended to dig a hole aud see if there was any coal underneath, what they were picking up being nothing but black stones which would not burn. They said, if that was the case, they would not remain any longer, but return to Tráng. After clearing away a space of variegated flag-stones, I ordered the crew to commence digging a large square pit, a little below high water-mark, through a stiff blue clay, which gradually became harder, until it changed into a hard gray sandstone, with, here and there, thin black streaks, like blades of buffalo grass. During the digging of this pit, the water constantly kept oozing in all round, so that the crew were obliged to knock off every ten minutes to bail it out. After digging to the depth of seven feet, this clay got so hard that the pickaxes and jumpers made but little impression on it, as it then seemed to form into a kind of gray sand.. stone. Having carefully examined this point all round, I found that it is composed, on the east side, of iron stone, sand-stone, and two small sandy bays. At the north end it is composed entirely of layers of gray sandstone, lying nearly in every direction of the compass. About 200 yards to the southward of the north point, and on the west side, there is a small sandy bay, or rather bay of sand, and broken shells. This bay extends about 300 yards north and south, and at its southern end, a ridge of sandstone commences in the face of a small hill, about fifteen feet high, which is washed by the sea at high water. Immediately abreast of this sandstone, to the westward, and extending about 200 yards in a north and south direction, is a layer of the party coloured flag-stones before mentioned, underneath which lies the coal imbedded in a strong blue clay. After breaking the upper layer of flag-stones, which is easily done, from its being mostly hollow underneath, but more so in some places than others, the coal is seen, lying in an east and west direction, and exactly resembling trees at different distances from each other. On applying pick axes or crow bars, it easily gives way, breaking off in lengths of from one foot to nearly twenty inches. But it is only on the upper part of these apparently fallen trees, that coal is to be found, varying in thickness from one to three inches. The heart of the tree is a mixture of hard stone. But in most of these trees nothing is to be seen in the shape of coal, in the lower part, which is nothing but a mixture of blue clay, the same as that which lies under the reddish flag. These trees do not extend down to the outer extremity of the rocks, at low water, but were only met with when the tide was at half-ebb. It was only on this small space of 200 yards that they were to be seen, and I can with safety state, that now, no more remains on this spot.
On asking the head-man of the Siamese in Malay, if he could point out any other places where coal was to be found inland, he said he could not, and that he had never heard of any one else having seen any. I then asked him if he knew if there was any to be found on any of the larger islands outside, telling him, at the same time, that I did not care whether he informed me or not, as I was going to the whole of them to examine them myself, and to look after pirates at the same time. After giving him a small present of Java tobacco, and two bottles of brandy, he acknowledged that there was some on the next point, to the northward, Tanjong Bombong, distant about six or seven miles.
On the morning of the 3rd, I manned two boats, and went to Tánjong Bombong, with Colonel Low. It being nearly high water when we arrived, we landed on the north part, where there is a beach of coarse sand and shells, with a small plain behind, covered with buffalo grass. We found this point to be of a circular form, with a few trees only on its side, which connect it with the low swampy main land. On returning to the south-west part, we found the tide had fallen greatly, which exposed a reef, extending to the S.W. On the top of this reef, which is mostly formed of sandstone, there appeared to be a bed of coal, lying in a N.W. and S.E. direction, in extent, 100 yards. This is also to be found at half-tide. In using crow bars, the stone gave way, but not so readily as that on Tanjong Patong. Unfortunately we found nothing but sandstone underneath, with a thin layer of what resem. bled coal on the top, one-eighth of an inch thick. At only two places, that resembled trees, like those on Tanjong Patong, were to be met with, but without the red flag-stones overlying. After having broken the black crust, it appeared as if the rock had been paid over with hot pitch. Here we picked up what samples of coal we could, and returned to the steamer.
On the morning of the 4th, finding that nothing more in the shape of coal was to be found in this vicinity, we steamed out towards the south-end of Pulo Lontar. On reaching it, I manned all the boats, and despatched them to examine Lontar, and several other small islands on its east side. In the evening the boats returned without having found anything like coal. Lontar is composed of red rotten rock on its south and west sides, and a large track of low swampy land, running north and south, in the middle, and high lime-stone rocks on its N.E. end.
On the morning of the 5th, we steamed round the south end of Lontar, and stood to the north towards Táma, Colonel Low having been informed by natives that coal was to be found close to the westward of the place from which I had formerly brought some black specimens. In the afternoon we arrived at Támá.
Early on the 6th, I manned the boats, and went on shore, Colonel Low going towards Támá, and I round Tanjong Putrí, In the afternoon both boats returned, having found no traces of coal. Tanjong Putri is entirely formed of very high limestone rocks, and numerous high rocky islands stretch from
it in a northerly direction, towards Pungáh, where there is a Siamese Rajah, who exports tin to Pinang in large quantities.
On the morning of the 7th, we started from Támá, and steamed towards Pulo Panjang. We came to on its east side, towards the south end, and despatched all the boats. In the evening they returned, having found no coal. This island is high and rocky, down to the water's edge, with, here and there, a small beach, sandy, but with a rim of coral at low water.
On the 8th, we left Pulo Panjang, and steamed to the S.E., towards Pulo Bouton, to examine that island. On the 9th, early in the morning, bad weather set in from the westward, with a perfect deluge of rain, which prevented my approaching the island so early as I could have wished. It cleared up a little in the afternoon, which enabled me to run in under the N.E. end, and anchor in 24 fathoms. Here is the only landing place I could see on a small sandy beach, the three larger islands having steep rocks down to the water's edge, on which the sea was breaking heavily. Colonel Low landed here, and, on his return at 7 P.M., told me he was perfectly satisfied that no coal could be found in Bouton.
On the morning of the 9th, we weighed, and stood to the eastward, between Lánkáwi, and Pulo Trotto, and came to anchor in 2 fathoms, close to three small islands, where one of Colonel Low's men said he got the last specimen of coal.
On the morning of the 10th, we went in the boats to the easternmost of a group of small rocky islands on the mud bank, to the northward of the Purlis. It being then low water spring tides, and Colonel Low's man being with us, I made him point out the place where he picked up the coal. I sent my men into the water (it being only two feet at the time) with empty gunnie bags to pick up all the coal they could get before the tide rose. They succeeded in picking up four gunnie bags full, but the tide rising, we returned to the steamer, and on emptying the bags on deck, I found the coal was covered on all sides with mud and barnacles. After having it well scrubbed and washed, I found it to be of the same kind as that which we had picked up at Tanjong Patong. This leads me strongly to believe that, it must first have been picked up at Tanjong Patong by some prahu on his way to Pinang, and the prahu having either got on shore on an extensive sandbank, on the east side of the island, or on a reef of rocks on the west side, must, at high water, have got into the small cove, and thrown it overboard. I am the more led to believe this to have been the case, because, 1st, this coal had barnacles on all sides, which was not be case with what we picked up at Tanjong Patong; 2nd, having gone on shore again in the evening, at low water, taking a dredge with me, which I had made at Pinang for such purposes, nothing in the shape of coal was to be dredged up, on either side of the sandbank, nor even over the spot where the coal was found in the morning; and, 3rdly, on the following morning, all the other small islands which are close to, and of the same formation as the one I have marked Low's Island in his sketch, were carefully examined by Colonel Low, with all hands from the steamer, and no coal could be found at low water.
I know nothing about geology, and I have no doubt that Colonel Low will be able to give a more satisfactory explanation regarding this coal than I can. At the same time I beg to state as my candid opinion that, there is not two bushels of coal more to be found on any of the islands that we have visited ; and nearly the whole of the other numerous islands that have not been visited (with the exception of Junk.ceylon) are either low and swampy, or else high limestone rocks, so that little or nothing can be expected from them.