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Drummond's Island (Tabiteuea)

Near the end of their assignment they stopped at Drummond's Island (Tabiteuea) in the Kingsmill group. Like some of the other islands, these islanders had a unique type of headdress, in this case a high, coned construction, woven of a pandanus leaf. They also displayed a disconcerting desire to be physically close to the explorers, and as it turned out, they required careful watching because they were consummate pickpockets, with tobacco as their favorite quarry. Some also displayed a contempt for the explorers, which finally came to hostility. On 7 April at the end of a busy day at the town of Utiroa, Captain Hudson called for all men to return to the boats, but one sailor, Seaman John Anderson failed to appear. A search was made, but finally Hudson ordered all his men to return to the ships. After he made more inquiries and searches the next day, he came to the conclusion that Anderson had been murdered. In order to exact retribution and discourage future treachery, he sent an armed expedition against the town. The islanders put up a brave fight, but in the end twelve were killed and their town was burned.