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A L Powys's 1872 Argentina Journal

Commencement of Journal -

May 20th , 1872 -

20th Arrived last night with a brick maker and this morning took charge of the place. McLean and Reeves delivered two wagon loads from the California Colony. One wagon and break also delivered loads. Simmonds commenced work at $20 per month. Nothing particular occurred during the day.

21st Paul started with his wagon to the Parana Agreed with the Italians as to where they were to take concessions. Paid Captain Bailey 200 dollars on account.

22nd Pugh and another came with a letter about the mill. Paid the bascos brickmakers 76 dollars on a/c. Nolan, Fisher and Co. started in the steamer for a pleasure trip. The Italians went up to look at land by Pajaro Blanco. Paul came back from Parana

23rd Sent off dray with four men to the springs, to make a corral. Nolan, Massey and Briggs went off in the steamer. Some natives came with horses.

24th Went over to the Parana with Baridon to examine the road. Found Manuel and a lot of natives there. Picked up one of our horses coming back.

25th Crossed Rodgers' dray and two bullocks over to the ba¤ado. Gave Bruce a contract to put up shelves in ? galpon ? for $9.

Sunday Reeve's dray arrived with goods from below and H McLean with big wagon and bullocks. Left two that I bought of Sam Gibson. They went away in the afternoon. About 4 o'clock Stephenson came up with the engine.

27th Mr Baradon and the Italians commenced working on the Parana road. W, Moore & Briggs arrived with 34 head of cattle. They lost three head on the road.

28th Stephenson took the engine down to fetch up the wagon they had left on the road. A soldier arrived from the Rey going to San Pedro. Stayed about the corral

29th The official from Rey called & bought some things. Went up as far as Spiller and shot a wolf. Men came back from putting up corral at Springs. W. Moore & Briggs came up with cattle.

30th Stephenson came back with engine and two cars. S. Gibson also came in the evening.

31st Nothing particular.


From June 1 to June 11 went down to Santa Fe per Quinto & drew, through Gessler 7,756 dollars. Came back per Carolina on the 8th and arrived here on the 11th.

12th Steamer arrived at Port W. and Colman came over with the officer.

13th Rode down to see Captain Bailey about the road. Thornton & Horsfall drunk at night - Thornton badly so.

14th Changed Faylis' wages to $30 per month to date from today. Major Jobson & 400 soldiers passed en route for the Rey. I rode to the Parana to see about timber & to get the mail, which did not arrive. Reeves came.

15th Martin brought over the letters. None of importance. Bailey came in from the camp. Smeder & Davis arrived with wheat and mill. Reeves left in the morning.

Sunday - Dick rode down to the Captain's camp. I stayed in the house all day.

17th Two of the Italians went over to the Parana. George went also with natives & their canoe. Some boxes he brought over were not weighed so he must be credited with $6 by guess.

18th Made a contract with an Italian to do doors and windows in the mens' house at $6 the window and $4 for one door. Engaged Marning at $20 per month. No dray from the Paran....

19th Very misty. Colman came over from the port. Mr Moore came in the evening with a French family.

20th Williams went with a load of firewood to the port. Mr Moore went away and Horsfall with him. Tried to rain at various times of the day. Killed a bullock.

21st Went down to the pontoon in the steamer and went to Esquina in the evening & saw Mr Hayes.

22nd Left Esquina & got up to the port again at dark, bringing John Morgan and Mrs Hughes with us.

23rd Rode over here with Floger & J. Morgan. Henrique arrived with maize. rained heavily at night.

24th Henrique went away with Morgan and Mrs Hughes. Raining heavily nearly all day. Smeder, Reeves & Thompson arrived with three wagons. Took the French boy into the kitchen.

25th Fine day. Started Alfred Wey & Connolly to work at cutting firewood at $2 per load. Reeves drays left with O'Brien, Williams & McDonald. A fine day.

26th Cold & gloomy. Received a message that the Captain was very bad. Williams went over tothe Paran... for iron. Stephenson came up at night with the engine. Frenchman Honorat started digging potatoes. Sold Shearson a pair of steers for $40 & Captain Newman 2 bullocks.

27th Nothing particular.

28th Nolan came back about mid-day also Captain Bailey about 12 o'clock and his men.

29th J. Moore, Horsfall and Davis came with wagons of wheat, having lost their bullocks at the Springs. I rode over to the Paran....

Sunday - Nothing particular.


1st Moore & Co. went away.

2nd Nolan & Dick went to the Parana to go down to La Paz per steamer. Very misty & cold.

3rd Lay in bed all day with a bad foot. Stephenson got the mill ready for working. Very cold. S. Gibson went to California Colony.

4th Got up & got about a little. The mill commenced working did about 7 ? fanegas ?.

5th Mill still doing well. Martin came from the port with letters & a telegram to say the Italian families had arrived in Buenos Aires. Letters from Major R. & Heurtley asking about grass, road, engine etc. (Memo to answer).

6th Two men had a fight in the evening.

7th Sunday - Five wagons came up with wheat, corn & sundries. Colman came over from the Paran... with a telegram. Five wagons arrived from below with wheat & sundries.

8th Wagons went away. Sent George & Cosgrove over to the Paran.... Commenced working the dresser, which did very well. Smeder & S.Gibson came & went.

9th Threatened rain all day. Went up as far as Pauls. Swift came over from the Parana with Mills, who had shot a native.

10th Rained overnight. No drays from the Parana till evening.

11th Rained off & on all day.

12th Ditto.

13th Fine. Rode over to the Parana.

14th Sunday - rained like blazes in the evening.

15th Rainy & gloomy. Baridon came back from Esquina reporting that the Italians had not arrived.

16th Very gloomy. Cleared in the evening, when Mr Moore came with wheat. Nolan & Dick came.

17th A fine day. J. Moore with four loads of wheat arrived.

18th J. Moore went away & the old man Nolan went to Esquina.

19th Stayed about the place all day with a bad foot.

20th Ditto.

21st Sunday - Cloudy, threatening rain.

22nd Rained & blew in the night.

23rd Went to Esquina in the steamer. Found a telegram to say immigrants had arrived.

24th Mr Coppinger & Macdonald & family came by the Guarani. Went with Mr C. about 11 & reached the Colony at dark.

25th Took a ride in the afternoon with C. to show him the lay of the country.

26th The Squire went over to the Parana

and there, half way down the page, on 26th July, 1872 - the Journal ends

The above entry is the last in the Diary for 1872 or any subsequent year. Arthur Powys was killed by Indians on 8th October, 1875, just short of his 33rd birthday.

The Tichmarsh Parish Magazine of December, 1875 carried this account of his death :

" October 8 at the Alexandra Colony, South America, Arthur Littleton, eldest son of the Hon. & Rev. A. Powys, aged 32.

Mr Powys was killed by Indians who had driven cattle from the colony farms. In their pursuit a small party of four settlers having dismounted for refreshment about ten o'clock in the morning, was surrounded by Indians in ambush. Mr Powys and another fell, a third was dangerously wounded and the fourth, the guide escaped with tidings to the colony. There Mr Powys was buried and early in the morning of Saturday, December 4th the bell of his birthplace rang his knell".

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