Captain James Cook is one of the greatest British explorers in history. His three voyages to New Zealand, Tahiti and Hawaii helped Britain expand the empire to the globe.
Born in Marton, Yorkshire in 1728, Cook started his career working for a shop but quickly prevented him from struggling on the sea. At the age of 18, he became an apprentice sailor before taking up the task of deputy commander on a French ship 6 years later. He then turned down the opportunity to work for a merchant ship in 1755 to return to study at the Royal Naval School. In just two years, Cook climbed into the position of Captain Pembroke, a ship sent to Canada to fight the French during the 7-year War.
It was there that he became famous in naval circles. Under the guidance of Samuel Holland map expert, Cook was adept at using charting tools, before drawing his own map of Gaspe Bay. He then embarked on a more difficult task: mapping the main battlefield on the Saint Lawrence River.
For months, he rolled around in the dark to avoid being discovered by the French, finally drawing the river map. He himself helped the British take advantage of the river to take over Quebec, a turning point in the war. Cook was hailed as a map master and spent the next eight years mapping the east coast of Canada. His contribution to the war was recognized, and his success and his mathematical and astronomical studies helped Cook to be commanded by the British Navy's Endeavor.
Astronomers learned that Venus was about to cross the Sun in June 1769, but this phenomenon was only observed in the Southern Hemisphere. The British government decided they had to observe this phenomenon and created a working group led by Cook. Observations are the main objective to conduct that voyage, although they are also very interested in the idea of exploring some southern continent. Cook's ship also features astronomer Charles Green and botanist Joseph Banks, whose mission is to observe Venus's path and collect plants from abroad.
Cook began his journey from Plymouth, England, in August 1768 to set foot in Tahiti, the largest island in the French Polynesia Islands in the southern Pacific. The task of observing Venus's path through the Sun was also achieved and then went further to New Zealand. He circled the island before becoming the first European to reach the east coast of Australia in 1770.
While Cook was greeted by the Tahiti people, Australian Aborigines were not happy to see his squadron. They even used the spear to attack Cook's Endeavor. However, the ship's strong fire prevailed so he landed at Botany Bay, claiming that the land belonged to England and named it New South Wales. After many other expeditions, Cook and the glorious crew returned to their homeland after nearly three years.
A year later, Cook embarked on another trip, this time with two Resolution and Adventure ships, to explore Australia more. In January 1773, he passed the Antarctic arc, where the extreme temperatures were so cold that they were forced to turn their heads. However, they returned to New Zealand and Tahiti as well as to explore Easter Island and Tonga to confirm in fact that no supercontinent existed in the south.
Cook's third and final trip took him back to North America to search for mysterious places. This time he was looking for the Northwest Corridor, a sea route that passed through North America connecting the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean, which had been rumored a lot before. Cook once again traveled to Australia, New Zealand and Tahiti before heading to the west coast of North America. On the way he saw Hawaii but did not stop there. Two ships continue to travel to Alaska and Bering, but must stop before the thick ice of the Arctic.
They returned to Hawaii in January 1778, where they were greeted with reverence. Fortunately, when Cook and his team landed in Hawaii, the islanders were holding a festival about the legendary legend of Lono. Aboriginal people believe Cook is divine, and sailors are cared for. They tried to leave the island in February but were forced to return quickly because the Resolution ship was damaged. When they were about to leave the next time, there was a dispute because a boat on the ship had been stolen. Cook tried to kidnap a chief on the island as a hostage, used to negotiate. That caused a clash that caused him to be stabbed to death on 14 February 1977 at Kaelakekua Bay. He was "buried" in the sea and the crew returned to their homeland to confirm that there was no Northwest Corridor and announced the death of one of England's greatest sailors and adventurers.
In addition to his reputation as an adventurer, Cook also made an important contribution in naval history. At that time, one of the worst killers on long journeys was a lack of vitamin C. The sufferer could suffer from fatigue, edema and toothache, jaundice and death. Not many people know how to prevent the disease, but Cook heard the doctors' advice and ordered to clean the ship as much as possible and his people had to eat lots of fruits and vegetables. That made his first trip the first trip with no deaths due to illness. It is thought that because of his maturity in the navy, Cook sympathized with the situation of the sailors, facilitating the best work for them.
One little thing to know about Cook is that while his ship's condition is extremely good and he is known for being a thoughtful captain, Cook or resorting to violence when impatient. His subordinates repeatedly endured Cook's wrath and many of the main believers were angry with anger, he was stabbed to death.