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Page:Oregon Historical Quarterly volume 12.djvu/24

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16 F. W. How AY As far as I know, the only records we have of Captain Duncan's movements on this coast are the casual references to him in Mrs. Barkley's diary, in Meares's, Portlock's, and Dixon's published volumes, the letter written by him to Dixon, contained in Dixon's Further Remarks on Meares, and his chart of the strait of Fuca, which was published by Dalrymple, January 14th, 1790. That chart contains the first published information concerning this strait. The chart covers from Barkley sound to a point near Jordan river, showing the strait to be about fourteen miles wide, and indicating the positions of Pachena bay, Carmanah point, Port San Juan, Neah bay, and Clallam bay. Although it was the middle of August when he was there, Duncan tells us that the weather was very unsettled. He goes on : "The Indians of Claaset said that they knew not "of any land to the Eastward ; that it was A'ass toopulse, which "signifies a great sea. They pointed that the sea ran "a great way up to the Northward; and down to the South- "ward; on the East side, they likewise said that at a great "distance to the Southward, I should find men that had guns, "as well as I had ; whether they meant that to frighten me or "not I can not tell, for all along the coast, I never found any "that wished to part with us or indeed wished us to trade with "another nation, telling us that they were the only people that "had anything or were worth trading with". He adds that they are expert whalers. The chart also contains this note : "A small rock above water, about the size of a canoe lyes N. 19 E. from Tatooche's Island at the distance of l l / 2 mile. I sounded y 2 a mile to the Northward of it and had no bottom at 90 fathoms". Captain Vancouver, in 1792, named this rock Duncan Rock, after its discoverer; but for that the name of Duncan is not preserved on our coast. Duncan did not penetrate the strait beyond Claaset, but he was the first person to give to the world any really definite in- formation about this strait.