2.14 Two Parades

May 27, 2012

Hayes Perkins at a suffrage parade – imagine.  I expect you anticipate correctly: rowdy and discourteous.  Nevertheless, a quite remarkable passage from the diaries.  His presence in that crowd informs me, at least, of the scope and power of that civil rights movement that changed the course of the United States.

Sorry about the lack of a map.  Google Maps updated and the import function is glitching – again.  The desired import shows Hayes sailing from Southampton, to Cobh, across the Atlantic, and to Washington DC.

February 10, 1913 – March 4, 1913

Touring Southampton with “a fellow Yank from Buenos Aires,” Hayes’ diary demonstrates that secondhand information he records isn’t always reliable. The friend filled him full of tales of Harvey Logan, Butch Cassidy, and Harry Longebaugh marauding around Argentina with an army of 400 soldiers of fortune.


Harry Longebaugh (Sundance kid) seated left
Harvey Logan (Kid Curry) standing right
Robert LeRoy Parker (Butch Cassidy) seated right

Kid Curry never went to Argentina and died in 1904 outside Parachute, Colorado. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid fled from US law enforcement agents to Argentina in 1901 but were chased to Bolivia in 1908 where most biographers believe they were killed.  Some believe the pair went successfully into hiding, but in any case by 1913 they’d been gone for five years.


SS Majestic 1896

Hayes describes the SS Majestic on which he took passage from Southampton to New York as, “just another old packet.” (The Majestic had been pressed back into service on the transatlantic run after the sinking of the Titanic in 1912 before being scrapped in May of 1914.)  Upon arrival at Queenstown (Cobh), Ireland, Hayes remarks that nothing about the town has changed since his visit there fourteen years earlier – right down to “the same old hulks off Spike Island.”

After a few rough days out from Queensland on high seas with wind driving straight out of the north carrying spits of snow, both wind and water calm allowing the Majestic’s slightly green passengers on deck for the first time. Hayes writes, “there are so many Jews on board, chiefly from Russia, and Galicia in Austria. One wonders what influence they will have on the American people, whether good or bad. They don’t seem to have much to offer now.”

The lull in the storm only lasted one day.  A westerly gale blew up fighting the majestic all the way into dock at Tompkinsville, NY where “came doctors and immigration officials and customs to receive us, none of them courteous, for this is a lost instinct in the American people. It is a sign of weakness to show ordinary decency to a stranger in my own land.” After enduring much hustling and bawling and shoving about, Hayes went ashore to the pier. “The rest were whisked away to Ellis Island, where doubtless they will be put through the mill by other inquisitors there.”

After stopping to see some relatives in New York, Hayes arrived in Washington DC on February 28, 1913, just prior to the presidential inauguration of Woodrow Wilson.

His two-page derogation of the US congress describes the House of Representatives as a group unintelligent (though notably bald) schoolboys incessantly quarreling – and the Senate as a “a rather mediocre body of men,” (with considerably more hair). “All of them have reached the goal they now have arrived at by trickery, chance, influence from some corrupt corporation.”

On March 3, 1913, the day Wilson arrived in DC to little fanfare, Hayes and his cousin Adam joined the “ignorant and uncouth mob” (quoting Women’s Journal of March 8,1913) pictured below in an historic suffrage march.

15th and Pennsylvania Washington DC
March 3, 1913

Hayes puts the number marching in the parade at 5,000 surrounded by “250,000 of these low browed proletariat crowed against the flimsy cords that restrained them”

First in the parade came Inez Milholland “clad as a nymph and riding a white horse”


Inez Milholland

Then Fraulein Hedwig Reicher “rigged out as Semiramis.”


Hedwig Reicher

Other documentarians describe Reicher as depicting Columbia. But Hayes is sure he’s heard of Semiramis, “for she was the first to discover the utility of eunuchs and introduced them to her harem.”

By now “some bold and unknown adventurer stepped over the rope. Another followed him, then another. Then they began to come at a dozen at a time.” Hayes saw Carrie Chapman Catt looking as grim as the red faced Hedwig Reicher who “looked all any German officer could” riding high on “a float drawn by big horses and the crowd gave way before these heavy animals, respecting their weight alone.”


Carrie Chapman Catt

Not all the men present were heckling the suffragist; Hayes saw Richmond Pearson Hobson,”hero of the Merrimac incident in Santiago in Cuba,” marching with the women. In 1913 Hobson represented Alabama in the US House of Representatives. Marching with the suffragists must have required considerable courage, but the rowdies in the crowd taunted the handsome man mercilessly saying, “We know why you’re here.” From Hayes we learn that the women knew Hobson was handsome as well “and have before this given ocular (and oscular) evidence of their admiration.”


Richmond Pearson Hobson 1911

Hayes’ mean spirited mockery of the women’s march persists even when applauding a woman he describes as “the prize of the show … an old negro mammy, perhaps a washer-woman. She knew human nature and took it all with a grin.” This woman received and returned many compliments shouted from the mob, bowing finally to an enormous cheer from the men. “It was an honest tribute, for she did not hold herself above us.”

Thus, the root of Hayes critique of the suffrage parade:  “If they want equality with men, then they should learn to take it.  They want all the deference men show them as they are now and want the right to mix with men as one of the crowd.  They got it today and showed they couldn’t take it.”  An ironic stance from a wanderer who always holds himself to impossibly high standards of abstinence and chastity constantly mourning the failures of the dissolute men and women with whom he associates.

The next day’s parade featured President Wilson, “self conscious, frightened, looking every inch the school master he is,” accompanied by the outgoing President Taft who “looked like a brewer who had had a bad night.”


Presidents Wodroow Wilsonand William Taft
at Wilson’s inauguration 1913


William J. Bryan
1908

The populist supporter of Wilson, William Jennings Bryan, “had the eye of everyman in the crowd. He Knew his audience, was like a jovial Nebraska farmer, which he is.”

Both outgoing President William Taft and wanderer Hayes Perkins (separately) slipped  away early from the pompous inaugural ceremony hoping to beat the rush for trains leaving the city.  A feeble hand clapping greeted Taft at the station.  As for Hayes:  “If Uncle Sam can dispense with my presence at future inaugurations, I shall be glad.  The entire proceeding is a bore, a nuisance to all concerned.  If they want to make a spectacle of this happening, why not change the date to sometime in midsummer?  At least people could keep warm.”  He caught a train heading south arriving in Richmond by nightfall.

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2.13 Halfway around the world.

May 20, 2012

Hayes sailed west from Sydney on his way back to the US; thus his arrival in England marked his first complete circumnavigation of the globe.  Please click to the website to see the map.  The distance Hayes traveled in six weeks requires zooming out to show half the earth’s surface.

December 25, 1912 – February 9,1913

On boarding G.M.S. Zeiten at Sydney on Christmas Day, Hayes makes no comment on the holiday but does note that the German penchant for naming ships for “obscure old time generals of Napoleon’ day… Seydlitz, Roon, Goeben, Zieten…” parallels the US use of “Civil War generals no one in Europe ever heard of… Grant, Sherman, Slocum, Logan, Hancock, Sheridan and so on.” He prefers the German ships to the British boats on the same line as faster, cleaner, and more solicitous of the passengers – still – “Were it not for the military aspect of it all, I would like it.”


G.M.S. Zeiten

A glance at the map shows Hayes retracing his route of eighteen months previously. This time though, instead of south to Mombassa, he’ll turn north at Aden toward the Suez Canal, the Mediterranean, and eventually home to the US.

Having covered this ground recently, his diary entries include little detail: Great tides at the entrance to Melbourne harbor: a suspicious woman on board who announces her intention to “escort” every male passenger on the Zeiten; silver-lead ore loaded at Adelaide bound for German factories; the drear Nullarbor Plain north of the Australian Bight; dry at Fremantle; Neptune’s visit at the equator; gamblers causing a ruckus banned from the salon by the officious Germans….

“Colombo made a pleasant interlude” – except that “Lady Alice” followed Hayes and his fifteen year old companion on a tour of a Buddhist temple. “If this is to be a sample of her keeping company with every man on board, she is hard put for escorts.”

Hayes’ critique of Buddhist practices following his visit to the temple might seem unduly harsh if he was less egalitarian in his denunciation of organized religions across all faith boundaries. “The great buildings, the bizarre decorations, the useless, lazy priests who are drones on the body politic cost tremendous sums, but the people give of their little freely to support all this.” How reminiscent of his assessment of Roman Catholicism. He does though write a line particular to Buddhism: “to the onlooker Buddhism resembled a stagnant pool, a slough of despond from which none escape who enter.”

At Aden the “brutal, domineering ways of the Germans showed to full advantage.” Without warning, sailors turned two great fire hoses on the hundreds of purveyors of small merchandise swarming about the Zeiten scattering men, boats and merchandise into the sea.

Sinai Penninsula

The view of the “vast, rugged bulk of Mt. Sinai” on entering the Gulf of Suez prompts Hayes to write a little biblical exegesis: “Of one thing one may be assured. If Moses led 3,000,000 people through this wilderness it was accomplished only by supernatural aid. There is very little natural food in this desert, nor water, nor shade.” (Hayes does not justify his number; one wikianswers site tells how to reach that number, another site asserts that the entire population of Egypt at that time totaled about 3.5 million people.)

The site of Elim’s wells, where Hayes says Miriam danced as the Israelites celebrated their escape from the Egyptians, elicits from Hayes another critical speculation concerning the biblical account of the parting of the Red Sea. “We are even shown where the Hebrews crossed, down some miles south of Suez. This is very unlikely.” The winds just don’t blow properly. The east wind described in the bible won’t push the waters back from the quicksand – “but a north wind will drive back the waters off the flats from some miles. There are quicksands there, and it is possible.” Perhaps Hayes would like to believe in the miracle that saved the Israelites: “The contour of the land may have changed materially in 3,000 years. It can easily when the sands blow across the desert as they do now.”


Suez Canal

The Zeiten makes slow headway up the Suez canal until reaching “the bitter lakes” where the ship can steam more quickly, “materially lessening the time that would be otherwise consumed if it were all canal the entire 110 miles.”

In a diary passage concerning the city at the north end of the canal, Hayes demonstrates that his reading extends beyond the bible:  “Port Said must be near the site of ancient Pelusium, where Cambyses the Persian captured the city by stratagem from the Egyptians.”  And that he is not interested in the kind of photography on offer from wouldbe guides to the “purlieus” of the town: “Peddlers in the streets are everywhere, both as guides and purveyors of pictures. They follow after persistently and will not be denied. Doubtless most people desire to be rather naughty when away from home, else this would not be so fully exploited.”

Kaiser Wilhelm II 1913

On January 27 1913, the Kaiser’s 54th birthday, all the Brits on board the Zeiten join the German’s celebrating, at least “insofar as beer guzzling goes.” Hayes writes that “There is a general Balkan war going on now…” From the deck of the Zeiten, he watched a Turkish battle ship run from a larger Greek ship. When the Egyptians voiced their “sympathies with their co-religionists,” Hayes and some of the other sailors on board told them (falsely) that an even larger British ship entering the Port was another Greek ship hunting the Turkish ship, “an antiquated American battleship sold to the Ottoman government.”

Intrigues aboard the Zeiten reveal that Lady Alice is a spy for the German government. “She gets her trips about the world in payment for information gleaned from her fellow passengers.” Sailing through the narrows as Scylla and Charbdis, “there were no other sirens than Lady Alice.” But even the German officers hold her in low regard, “for who can like a traitor to one’s own coutry?”

Past Capri and “the sullen smoking bulk of Vesuvius,” the Zeiten docks at Naples amidst a swarm of pimps and vendors. But past that crowd, “There is really something to this report of Naples’ surpassing beauty, especially at sunset.” Of course, admiration for a city can’t last more than a paragraph for Hayes. His entry for January 29, 1913 ends: “The more I see of the world the more I feel convinced it would be a better place without man in it.”

Campo Santo, Genoa

Approaching Genoa, a passenger on the Zeiten asked Hayes if he’d “seen anything of the leaning tower of Pysy [sic] yet. [The Passenger] could scarce believe this could not be seen when miles at sea.”  On arrival, Hayes visited the house where Christopher Columbus was born, commenting that the Genoese of his time thought Colombus crazy and the Spaniards threw him in jail before he died. Of all the sights of Genoa, the Campo Santo most “excites the admiration of a mere tourist and globe trotter.” He writes that the compound is only eight acres but “half a million people have been interred her from time to time.” He’s not much for sculpture in general but feels inadequate to the job of describing “this wilderness of marvelously carved marble.” He’s also impressed by a candle a foot in diameter and more than ten feet tall designed to burn for hundreds of years.

French President Raymond Poincare

Leaving some of the “more bibulous passengers” behind in Italy, the Zeiten sails past Corsica, then along the coast of Africa with a splendid view of the Leseser Atlas Range. “Algiers is a clean city” in the midst of a great celebration for the coronation of French President Poincare.

A German man-o-war anchored near enough to the Zeiten that Hayes could see their sword-work drills, elicits comparison between national military comportments: To Hayes, the German officers are bullies, the Brits are occasional snobs brought quickly to earth by their countrymen, and the French are least domineering “though it is said the foreign legion is tough.”

Passing through the strait at night, Hayes could see the lights of Gibralter to the north and of Tangier to the south. With the Bay of Biscay “on its best behavior” none on board suffer seasickness which allows “boozing to their heart’s content.” Taking on a pilot at the needles,

The Needles, Southampton

the Zeiten makes her way to Southampton where Lady Alice greets her fiancé radiant with smiles despite a severe session with the ship’s captain moments previously. “Surely Germany has some obscure purpose in this, and why an English citizen can demean herself to carry tales on her fellows is more than one can see.  I hope I never see her again.”

February 9, 1913, one day short of Hayes’ 35th birthday. His arrival in Southampton signals his first circumnavigation of the globe – a milestone unremarked in his diary.


2.12 Jervis Bay Naval Station

May 13, 2012

I know some of my readers are snake sensitive.  Mom, don’t read the last two paragraphs of this segment.

In this eight month period Hayes doesn’t move far – just a little up and down the Australian east coast getting together a bankroll to pay for return to the US.  Then you’ll really get to see him moving fast.

April 7, 1912 – December 20, 1912

When Greer and Hammond “decided to freeze [him] out of the plantation deal,” Sydney was too rich for Hayes.  The Australian government was about to begin building a new naval college at Jervis Bay and a national capitol at Canberra; surely a skilled man could find work at one of those sites.  So Hayes rode the train 100 miles down the beautiful Australian coast past Bulli, Wollongong, and Nowra through some of the most productive agricultural land in the country.  Upon arrival at Jervis Bay, the capitol project in Canberra hadn’t started at all and the naval college was only a forest of survey markers.  There would be work at Jervis Bay but not for a few months:  “In the meantime I must find something to do” – or starve.


Royal Australian Naval College, Jervis Bay 1913

A local “bush merchant” offered to stake Hayes weekly food deliveries if Hayes would gather grass tree gum.  Germany buys the gum from yellow grass trees, “said to be for varnish, but one wonders”  – perhaps the inventive Germans turn grass tree gum into “an engine of destruction.”  In any case, a “fair patch” of gum trees grows within site of the survey crews at the naval base, which relieves the loneliness of the bush and puts Hayes first in line for paid work when construction begins.


Xanthorrhoea resinifera, Australian grass tree

After the quarrel with Greer and Hammond over the plantation, Hayes writes, “Somehow I’m glad to be alone.”  His diary in this quiet solitary time describes the local geology, the magnificent bird life of Australia and New Guinea, the fauna, and the insularity of the Australian bushmen (as he calls the European immigrants).  Most bushmen are illiterate, though they have a “native intelligence and know what is going on around them.”  That, and they know everything about two other subjects:  boxing and the Australian Robin Hoods.  At campfires every night all across Australia the exploits John L. Sullivan, Jim Corbett, and Jim Jefferies alternate with tales of the bushrangers Ned Kelly, Ben Hall, and Captain Moonlight

May 25 finds Hayes cutting gum alone in the Australian outback sleeping nights under a shabby tent that doesn’t quite turn the cold rain of the start of Australian winter.  But Massson, “a genial Frenchman who is in charge of the gangs” at the naval college knows Hayes’ work ethic by his gum production and promises him a place.  This good news of a job offsets a disturbing letter from home telling of the death in Oregon of his uncle Thomas Jefferson Perkins.  “It causes a certain feeling of loneliness, knowing I will see him no more.”

By mid-June Hayes sits sharpening the axe Masson issued him outside his tent now pitched on a “street” in the permanent encampment at the Jervis Bay construction site.  Fortunately he’s as good with an axe as these Australian axemen – “artists in their line” – because some of the locals resent a foreigner given a chance on the crew.


Felling a gumtree, Australia circa 1900

In late July Hayes’ irrepressible industry brings trouble.  First, he’s been out gathering honey to share around the camp.  Second, he’s been barbering the other men free of charge.  This is a union camp:  you can’t give honey to the bosses unless you’re a suck-up, and you can’t do more than one job.  “My immediate superior is a leader in this anti-foreign crusade.  We had a good round the other day.”

Hayes got the last laugh on the anti-foreign supervisor a few days later.  Hayes had made two kerf cuts on the way to felling a tree three feet in diameter when the minister of naval affairs for all Australia happened to be strolling on inspection of the site.  Just before the giant tree fell, the minister’s small cadre stopped to watch allowing Hayes to overhear the minister give a little patriotic speech: “Gentlemen, Let me point out to you an example of our Australian axeman!  Superior to those of every country, observe for yourselves!”  (Hayes’ quote.)  No one corrected the minister’s misidentification of nationality, but the timekeeper for the entire work, hearing the speech and knowing Hayes, promoted him to head the timber yard (a position superior to his anti-foreign supervisor).

As the last cold winds of September promise Australian spring, Hayes has the timber yard organized well enough that the anti-foreigners can’t fault his work.  But he’s still upsetting them by cutting hair.  With three hundred men now in camp, and the nearest barber twenty miles north, men line up on Sundays outside his tent.  Hayes thinks of it as “an accommodation” to be performed without charge.  He’ll even do it for a union boss, but when the clean-shorn boss tossed him a shilling, Hayes knew well enough to avoid that trap and tossed it back.  Had he accepted payment, they would have run him off for doing more than one job.

By November Hayes has flowers growing around his tidy tent.  The union bosses suspect more sucking-up and worse yet, wives of officials at the construction site compliment him!  Time to be thinking about returning to the US.  The compliments are bad enough but he’s also got too much money for his comfort.  The construction site has no bank so he has to carry twenty pounds earned from the sale of gum and six month’s salary on his person at all times.  Furthermore, he’s worried about inflation:  The Australians unions are bothersome and inefficient and, though Hayes admits they may have once remedied some evils for the workingman, they are now running the country into massive debt at 7% interest.  “Yes, it is time to leave a country like this before the money I have earned is valueless.”

Mid-summer in Australia means winter in the US, so Hayes dawdles at the job for a few weeks more at the naval base robbing honey trees with a pal and trying “to steal as near as possible to feeding kangaroos before they become aware of our presence.  Then, to see them leaping with twenty-five foot jumps – it is a sight to behold.”

Just before Christmas 1912, Hayes quit the naval base.  By now he says all the union bosses protest his departure; they “Now realize I was not distributing honey [and] cutting hair to gain the goodwill of the bosses.”  But their change of heart came too late – Hayes needs to check in with his family in the United States.

On the first short leg of his journey halfway around the world, Hayes rode the coach from Jervis Bay to Nowra with a “peculiar chap” whom all the men call Buffalo Bill “for he affects long hair and a Stetson hat.”  To Hayes he may be a dime-store cowboy, but he’s also a bona fide expert snake handler.  Collectors in Sydney will pay seven shillings-sixpence for poisonous black snakes – and Buffalo Bill has a sack full.  The bushman driving the coach to Nowra knew Buffalo Bill’s business and wouldn’t let his “writhing mass of reptiles” into the compartment so the sack of snakes rode to Nowra dangling beneath the vehicle.  However, anonymous on the train from Nowra to Sydney, Bill heaved his sack onto a rack directly over the heads of several female passengers.  The snakes weren’t bothered.  The women, ignorant of the sack’s contents, weren’t bothered.  Buffalo Bill retrieved his sack and departed the train.  At that point Hayes felt it necessary to explain about Buffalo Bill and his sack, “and they almost screamed then.”

“Sydney is the same dusty city.”  Greer and Hammond are no friends, though they want him back on the plantation project.   Yes, Hayes remains convinced that December is a pretty good time for leaving Australia –  by Christmas day he’ll be sailing west, then north toward the Suez Canal on a German freighter, across the Mediterranean, then the Atlantic to arrive in Washington DC by March.


2.11 Plantation on Mullins Bay

May 6, 2012

Writers and Missionaries and Businessmen – oh my.

August 12, 1911 – March 3, 1912

Hayes’ vague plan to see New Hebrides got revised:  “Withdrew my deposit on the ticket to the Hebrides and changed it to New Guinea.” Hayes feels he knows New Guinea and its inhabitants well, so Greer, the importer who thinks he knows coconuts, in partnership with the reverend R.B.S. Hammond, decides to send Hayes to purchase land “and see what about promotion of the plantation.”

R.B.S. Hammond
Robert Brodribb Stewart Hammond

Of the return trip up the Australian coast “there is little of interest to tell now” – miners, planters, rapidly vanishing blackbirders, smug missionaries…. Instead Hayes writes an extended apology for his way of life: “A man does not survive many years in this environment, unless it be the missionaries, whose lives are better ordered than we adventurers who break the way for so-called civilization. It is a thankless job, but we like it. The freedom of the bush, the confidence given by the simple natives, the absence of the binding conventions and man-made rules is sufficient reward and repays for the hardships we must meet. Then there is the thrill of being the first to see a new river, find a rich mine, a new people whose knowledge of white men is nil.”

At Port Moresby Hayes met “the Honorable Staniforth Smith, lieutenant governor of British New Guinea” immediately sizing Smith up as “a suave sort of person, one who steals your brain and all that’s in it.” Hayes has nothing to say to the “great explorer” sitting behind a desk reaping the credit for the work of “hardy prospectors.”

Staniforth Smith
Staniforth Smith 1916

During the stopover at Port Moresby, Hayes also met the writer Beatrice Grimshaw of whom he had written somewhat disparagingly earlier (see section 2.7 of this synopsis).  Grimshaw was forty-one in 1911 and had been living In Papua New Guinea for eight years.  Their  meeting in person wrung from Hayes this slight approbation: “now she picks out the truth from the tares and makes fairly creditable books.” He still chides her for writing romance about the Papuans: “Those who in a measure are civilized would be back into cannibalism in a month if left to themselves.”

Beatrice Grimshaw
Beatrice Grimshaw
When the Red Gods Call
When the Red Gods Call, 1911

At Samarai he hitches a ride on the Kaiora with a former boss, Joseph Cox, who is now director of the Papuan Rubber and Trading Company, around to a river he calls the Regurani on Mullins Bay. [This must be the Wegulani River, the only river on Mullins Bay with a similar name.] The dickering for land purchase goes well. “The old women, slaves as they are but controlling public opinion, favor me.” With the land deal sealed, Hayes returns to Samarai by the overland route, a “hard run” wading rivers across the peninsula “to get government consent.”

Upon return to Samarai, “Unfortunately envy has been aroused among my old associates because all the natives in the country want to work for me.” Hayes freely advises his associates on how they too can succeed: leave the women alone, play square with the men, and carry a pound of chrysophanic acid to doctor the ringworm. “All Samarai is amazed at my success.” The reverend Charles William Abel of the London Missionary Society at Kwato believes Hayes ought to have asked Abel’s permission since he “seems to think he is head of all this (region).” Instead, Hayes seeks out Connolly, territorial surveyor, who will return with Hayes to the river to officially define the borders of his tract.

Connolly was required by “the boys who sit in the seats of the mighty at Port Moresby” to outline all roads on his survey map. As there are no roads at his prospective plantation, Hayes paid Connolly 75 pounds after Connolly’s road map “plotted down where natives have been chasing kangaroos in the grass.”

Connolly leaves just as the season is turning a bit dryer, “though there seems to be no real dry season here.” The drier grasses permit all the villages around to join in a hunt using nets of pandanus fibre to snare wildlife fleeing a line of fire set in the dense, six-foot high lalang grass. (This hunt is reminiscent of one described by Barbara Kingsolver in The Poisonwood Bible.) One of the native men who Hayes describes as deaf and dumb, and “easily the strongest in this community,” wrestles a wild boar live from the nets. “This is counted a great feat” marked by a ceremonial killing followed by a great feast. “None of the youth, no woman nor child might eat of this, but they offered me some. I was glad enough to get a good hunk of leg.”

Perhaps courtesy toward the post-hunt ceremony required Hayes to eat from the cook pot. A paragraph later he writes, “I dislike eating anything cooked in these community pots. In them they boil snakes, goanas (huge lizards seven or eight feet in length at times), alligator flesh or eggs, and perhaps human flesh for all I know. For all the bush people are cannibals and think nothing of it.” His gladness over receiving a hunk of boar’s leg was probably relief at recognizing what came to him from the pot.


Australian Goanna

In November of 1911, Hayes traveled back to Samarai where his backers from Sydney urged him with confident words and glowing praise to carry on developing the plantation – but produced no additional money. He says they want him to exploit the native workers according to “the Spanish dictum practiced in South America and Mexico, to get the natives’ work for nothing, but to treat them right and see their souls are saved.” Hayes won’t practice the dictum, he knows that good pay, fair treatment, and respect for women brings the best result.

For the second time, Reverend Abel from Kwato tried to interfere with Hayes’ land purchase.  Of course Hayes ignores Abel about the plantation but Abel’s presumption prompts a lengthy comparison in the diary between missionaries and miners – the two vanguards of colonialism. Miners wear their faults openly: “drink and loose women.”  While, according to Hayes, most of the missionaries practice the same two vices but top them with hypocrisy. “To get to brass tacks there is little difference between the miners and the missionaries on any of these matters.”  (Hayes’ critique of missionaries is quite general.  His complaints about Abel are specifically about interference with Hayes’ prospective plantation.)

Back at the plantation, the land is fertile; it would be perfect for coconuts but with no cash on hand for a tractor the whole place grows to palms instead. As Christmas approaches, his tinned food runs out so Hayes turns to eating sago, kangaroo, and wild pig. Right after the first of the year 1912, beseeched by her distraught parents, Hayes doctored an extremely sick young girl from a nearby village. Walking six miles daily to attend the girl, Hayes finally got the fever under control with quinine and the girl lived – for which the entire village demanded payment. “It seems that an ethnologist spent a few days among these people some years ago. The samples of blood he took he paid for, telling them it was excellent medicine he was giving them.” A precedent had been established and all were angry when Hayes refused to pay.

Enough of bad food, no money, and ingratitude form Europeans and Papuans alike; Hayes writes to Sydney asking for fare back to Australia and departs the plantation project.

At Samarai, Hayes relates tales of men once wealthy and of high station reduced by drink to beachcombing. From one of the beachcombers  (a term Hayes uses derogatorily) he heard a long tale of cannibalism and retribution for cannibalism accompanied by the gift of two pineapple war clubs captured in the fight on the Yodda River as proof of the veracity of the story.


Pineapple War Club

When the boat to Port Moresby stopped at Yule Island to deliver booze to the priests, Hayes meets a saint – a haggard, emaciated crone who cooked for the mission for twenty-four years. “The hard boiled traders, miners, blackbirders all respect her, stand dumb before her when they blaspheme at the name ‘missionary’ concerning others.”

In Australia, all the talk is about the disappearance of lieutenant governor Staniforth Smith into the bush west of Port Moresby. Hayes says they ought to send a couple of prospectors experienced in the bush to find them rather than “a government party with all the trimmings.”

Hayes travels as fast as possible down to Sydney to be finished with the plantation, but boats are slow. Conversation with the “hard-bitten bushmen” (a complementary term Hayes uses to describe Europeans toughened by experience in the bush) on board turns first to crocodiles. The longest length mentioned is thirty-three feet. Hayes himself says, “I saw one on Mullins Harbor longer than my whale boat, which was 26 feet.” They will chase prey on land successfully unless the man or calf is smart enough to twist and turn. A crocodile can outrun you but turns poorly, so, when chased by a crocodile, dodge and weave. And should one of these monsters clamor over the gunwales of your lighter (small rowboat), shove an oar down its throat. He’ll snap it in half but you might survive. Then to giant clams:  If you step in an open clam’s mouth, you’ll be seized and drown. Oh, and the native men won’t dive for pennies when sharks are in the vicinity.  It’s so dangerous here, “Even many plants are predatory or parasitic in their ways.” Just the shipboard chatter behind the Great Barrier Reef on the way to Sydney.

After knocking about Sydney for more than a month Hayes finally settled up with Greer and the Reverend Hammond. They convinced Hayes to sign for 25 pounds in payment for his six months in the bush plus 200 shares of stock in the company.  Subsequently Hayes learned that Greer and Hammond allotted themselves 900 shares each. “I don’t blame Greer, he is a so-called business man, and we all know such are one the borderline of robbery. But Hammond is one of the most noted ministers of the church in all Australia.”

So much for Hayes Perkins plantation owner; he’s done with this kind of business and this kind of ministry.