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A Royal Navy attempt to search on southern Taiwan for American survivors of a massacre is driven off.

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03/26/1867

The American bark Rover had sailed from Swatow, carrying cargo along the Chinese coast to the northern port of Newchwang, present-day Yingkou.  Encountering bad weather, the vessel was driven onto rocks and sunk on March 13, 1867 at the extreme southern tip of the island of Taiwan, then termed Formosa.  The captain, his wife, and his crew escaped by boat but on landing were immediately attacked and killed by the area's Paiwan aboriginal inhabitants. An immediate British naval effort from H.M.S. Cormorant to come to the aid of the Rover survivors took place on this day but was too small to resist attacks from locals and withdrew with one man wounded, shelling the natives as they went.  A later and larger  U.S. Navy attempt in June 1867 to punish those responsible was similarly repulsed.  (By John Osborne) 

Source Citation: 

James W. Davidson, The Island of Formosa, Past and Present... (New York : Macmillan & Co., 1903), 115-116.