January 8. — To-day we remained in camp to recruit the horses, and the natives remained with us; soon after breakfast one of them lit a signal fire upon a sand-hill, and not long afterwards we were joined by three more of the tribe, but the women kept out of sight. I now sent the native boy out with one to shoot birds for them, but he came back with only a single crow, and I was obliged to go myself, to try whether I could not succeed better. Being lucky enough to procure four, I gave them to the natives, and returning to the camp we all dined, and afterwards lay down to rest for an hour.

Upon getting up, I missed a knife I had been using, and which had been lying beside me. One of the strange natives who had come to the camp this morning, had been sitting near me, and I at once suspected him to be the thief, but he was now gone, and I had no prospect of recovering the lost article. In the afternoon, the stranger came up to the camp again, and I at once taxed him with the theft; this he vehemently denied, telling me it was lost in the sand, and pretending to look anxiously for it; he appeared, however, restless and uneasy, and soon after taking up his spears went away with two others. My own native boy happened to be coming over the sand-hills at the time, but unobserved by them, and as they crossed the ridge he saw the man I had accused stop to pick something up, and immediately called out to me; upon this I took my gun, and ascending the hill, saw the native throw down the knife, which my own boy then picked up; the other natives had now come up, and seemed very anxious to prevent any hostilities, and to the chief of those who had been so friendly with us, I explained as well as I could the nature of the misunderstanding, and requested him to order the dishonest native away, upon which he spoke to them in his own language, and all took up their spears and went away, except himself and one other. These two men remained with us until dark, but as the evening appeared likely to be wet, they left us also, when we lay down for the night.