National Geographic : 1968 Mar
History's most famous mutiny took place near the islands of Tofua and Kao on April 28, 1789. This westward view on a Tongan stamp places the event at sunset; actually Capt. William Bligh of the Bounty and his loyal crewmen were set adrift after dawn. Green ring of a dozing volcano circles a crater lake on Tofua; plume of steam on left rim issues from a secondary cone. Beyond rises the 3,380 356 foot extinct volcano Kao, Tonga's highest point. that I have never revealed to anyone before. Only the family know about this. "When Tuita sailed in company with the King's canoes, he asked his son, 'Do you see a white bird?' 'Yes, only one.' 'Good,' said Tuita. He said no more, and after a few hours they sighted land. "Now Tuita was cunning. He knew that the white bird, which we call manuvdkai, the lookout bird, flies high to look for 'atu, the tunny, swimming in the sea. He also knew that the manuvakai never flies very far from land. He knew they were sailing west toward Fiji, but the bird told him land was near." "And the feeling of the sea?" I asked. Kaho laughed. "Tongans of those days were superstitious. They thought when he felt the sea he must be half a god. And that is why we have kept it as a family secret; all the peo ple feel there is something special about us." "But why have you chosen to tell this to me?" I asked Kaho.