A British official in the 1880s remarked on 'The limited space, the rude accommodation, the poor and often dirty bedding and clothing, the awkwardness and novelty of the cooking and sleeping arrangements, the strangeness of the passengers to each other, the rough and unclean habits of some and the helplessness of others, and added to all, the discomforts of seasickness ...'.*
The document bears the signature of W.M. Collins, Emigration Agent for Natal. It's dated at Calcutta, the port of embarkation, on 5 December 1860. From Calcutta to Natal the voyages took approximately twelve weeks, slightly less from Madras. By the 1880s the use of steamers reduced the length of voyage to about 24 days.
* [From: Northrup, Indentured labor in the age of imperialism; quoted in Inside Indenture by Ashwin Desai and Goolam Vahed.]