Tuesday, 31 May 2016


Passengers outbound, 27 April, 1909
193 steerage and 22 cabin.

* duplication

extract from:


In print: April 17, 1909.

Per Lund’s Blue Anchor Line s.s. Waratah leaving London on the 27th
inst. For Las Palmas, Cape Town, and Australia:

Miss V. M. Alcock
Mrs. Baxter
Miss Baxter
Miss E. M. Brace
Mr. A Coulter *
Mr. R. C. H. Dawes
Mr. C. H. Dean *
Mrs. A. Pierce Green
Miss Green
Master Everett Green
Mr. H. K. Hemans
Miss J. Lawson *
Lieut. Colonel F. W. Panzera
Mrs. J. Lyne     (? Lyon)
Miss D. E. Lyne     "
Miss E. P. Lyne     "    
Miss N. M. Lyne     "
Mr. W. J. Roberts
Mrs. Roberts
Mrs. Spindler
Lieut.-Colonel A. C. Tawke
Mrs. Tawke
Miss Tawke
Mr. H. Wolfenden
Miss E. A. Wood
Mrs. H. Wyndham *

Total:  23 

The Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday 16 June, 1909.


The Waratah the latest addition to Lunds' Blue
Anchor fleet is due at Sydney tomorrow from London
and Capetown, via ports, and will berth at the Central
Wharf, Millers Point. Appended is a list of
her passengers -
From London:

Mr. J Astley
Mr. Danvers Power
Mrs. H Wyndham *
Mr. R F Ashworth
Mr. J Abbot
Miss M Aitken 
Miss J Allen 
Mrs. M A Baker 
Miss F ? Elders 
Mr. and Mrs. F Bower and child 
Mr. H T Brown 
Mr. C Brown 
Mr. R Harden 
Mr. G ? Busey 
Mr. and Mrs. H Barnard 
Miss M Barnard
Mr. J Britton 
Mr. J A Rastick 
Mr. and Mrs. Caulfield and three children 
Mr. A Coulter *
Mr. Wm Cumming - lost with Waratah
Mr. A Dreamer 
Mr. C H Dean * 
Mr. F Dean
Miss A Dewey 
Mr. J Duncan 
Mr. Joseph Downie
Mr. J Downie
Mr. F Downie 
Miss M Dring
Mr. and Mrs. Thos. Davies and two children 
Mr. A Farquhar 
Mr. H Fauns 
Mr. J W Gibson 
Mrs. Graham and child 
Misses L and C Garret 
Mr. J Gold
Miss A B Gliss 
Miss J Grenman 
Mr. H W Grenman
Mr J M. Hunter - lost with Waratah. 
Mr. H L Higgins 
Mrs. T A Henny 
Mrs. Holt and infant 
Mr. K Henderson 
Mr. and Mrs. T Hart 
Mr. L Humphreys 
Mr. Wm Hay - likely to be Mrs. Agnes Hay's son, William.
Mr and Mrs. T H Jones and child 
Mr. and Mrs. T Jenkins and three children 
Miss J Jennings 
Mr. J Kyle
Miss J D Kerr 
Messrs D and Kelley 
Mr. and Mrs. Wm Kirk 
Miss Kirk 
Miss J Lawson * 
Mr. J Leonard
Mr. and Mrs. C Lamkin 
Mr F Loveday
Mrs. Lyons and four children - ? Mrs. Lyon and Infant lost with Waratah ? 
Mr. H D Mason - Herbert Duncan Mason, witness at Inquiry.
Miss N R Millar 
Mr. H F Mildenhall 
Mr. J Raynard
Mr. J M'Gregor 
Mr. L Neave 
Mr. J Oag 
Mr. A Owers 
Mr. and Mrs. W H Peters and infant 
Mr. H Pitkin 
Mrs. Plaskett and child 
Mr. E Pritchard 
Mr. R Padley 
Miss N Pinnock 
Miss J W Reid 
Mr. H Rowe
Mr. and Mrs S Rosengold 
Mr. D RusseII
Mr W R Himmer 
Mr. J Reid 
Mr. F J Read
Miss M Rea 
Mr. R T Richards - Reginald Thomas Richards, witness at the Inquiry.
Mr. R W Senark
Mr S R Saville 
Mr. J Smith 
Miss Stanner 
Mr. J Todd 
Mr. S Taylor 
Miss E Tweddle 
Mr. S H Trumelle
Mrs. Veit and infant 
Mrs. E Wood 
Mr. F Whittaker
Mr. A E Wrlght - ? lost with Waratah ?
Mrs. L White 
Mr. J Watson
Mr. and Mrs. E Wombwell and son 
Mr. R J Whitingham 
Miss C Weston 
Mr. B C Warwick 
Mr. J Waters 
Miss L Waters
From Capetown:

Mr. J B Gerard Pan
Mr. C A Oldham 
Mr. E D Benjamin 
Mr. A J Coxton 
Mr. F Gold 
Mr. D Green 
Mr. and Mrs Harris and four children 
Miss A M Low 
Mrs. Jessie M'Quade and infant 
Mr. and Mrs. A J M'Causland 
Mr. and Mrs. M'Rae and infant 
Mr. and Mrs Poulton and two children
Mr. D P Prendergast.

Total    158

37 passengers missing from the above lists. Do any readers have further information?

Monday, 30 May 2016


Auckland Star, 14 August, 1909.

Article image

Article image

So, I am not the only one who has had thoughts of heavily laden and reduced buoyancy. Clearly Henry K Evans was well informed on the true extent of Waratah's cargo, an issue played down in the mainstream press - and the Inquiry for that matter. 


The Advertiser (Adelaide) Friday 31 December, 1909.

There is a belief prevalent in many quarters 
\that the lost steamer Waratah may
have been cast away on the Crozets, and
that her passengers, or some of them,
may be found on those islands. That is
the basis of the movement in Melbourne
to raise money tor another search for the
missing vessel. In the "Herald" of Wednesday 
a survivor of the Strathmore, Mr.
John Pirie, now a shipwright employed by
the Melbourne Harbor Trust, tells the
story of the remarkable rescue of the 
company of that vessel.
He sailed from London in the Strathmore, 
on April 17, 1875, being on the boat
as ship's carpenter, was shipwrecked, went
through all the trying experiences of life
on an inhospitable island, and to-day looks
as hearty and robust as if he had never
known hardships.
"The Strathmore,"' says Mr. Pirie, "was
a good ship of 1.492 tons. There was a
crew of 38 men and boys, and there were
also 51 passengers. The wreck was a sheer
misadventure, for which no one was really
to blame. It has been said that the mate,
Mr. Ramsay, neglected his duty through
attending a concert. That is incorrect. He
had the fullest means of knowing the facts.
It was a quarter to 4 o'clock in the morning 
when the Strathmore struck on a rock
not far from Apostle Island, one of the
Crozets. At that hour no concert would
be in progress. The mate, I am sure, acted
in every way that a seaman should. He
was a good officer, and gave his life to the
work of saving the passengers. When the
Strathmore struck I ascended the mainmast
and slid down the forestay and reached
the forecastle. I went as far astern as I
could, and found the mate on his knees
trying to free the starboard life
boat, in which 19 people were seated.
A wave came up very suddenly and lifted
the boat off the chocks. It must have listed 
and he thrown overboard because he was 
never seen again. It is wrong that at this time 
a slur should be cast on his memory. "What
became of the lifeboat? After being lifted off 
the chocks she fell back and damaged her
bottom, but rose and floated over the poop,
and then got clear of the ship without 
capsizing. To explain that, I must tell you
that the vessel, after she struck, lay with
poop submerged, but the forecastle well
out of the water. 

In the fog.

"How had the accident happened? Well, we 
had got into those high latitudes to find a wind
to take us to New Zealand. Then it is my belief 
that the ironstone in the rocks may have deflected 
the compass and what is more, the fog was so
thick that a lookout was of no use. After we struck
we could not see the rock which we had actually struck,
though it was towering up before the ship. Why, all 
the while we were on Apostle Island - six months and
22 days - we saw Hog Island about twice, though
there is only a channel a few miles wide between. 
Hog Island appeared on those occasions to be 
fairly green and fertile; but Apostle Island is barren
rock, with just a little rank moss growing on 
guano-filled crevices. Five persons died on the 
island before we were rescued. I don't wish to boast
but I cannot say that I ever felt really despondent about
our ultimate rescue except once, and that was when
the White Eagle passed through the channel between
us and Hog island. We saw the man at the wheel,
and tried to attract his attention, but without
success. Passengers on the White Eagle saw us
and told the captain, but he said 'the Crozets are
uninhabited,' and did not stop.The ship went to pieces
before we could get anything much of the cargo. We
had to live on albatross, which took getting used to
at first. A few mutton pieces were taken, but these
were reserved for Mrs. Wordsworth, the only woman
who had been rescued. A spring of beautiful mineral water
rose at the top of the rock and trickled down the side. It
did more than anything else to keep us in health. We clothed
ourselves in penguin skins and we built a wall of turf under
a shelving of rock in a way to form a hut.

Terrible Times.

"We had some terrible times. Early in our experience all
were laid up except five or six of us, who had to feed, keep
warm and tend to the rest. Then sometimes we were surrounded
by a field of ice. Once an iceberg came and fastened itself
on jagged rocks of our island and with the wind blowing across
nearly froze us. Many suffered from frostbite and we had no soap,
but the yolks of the eggs had to serve. Soon after landing a number
of lawless fellows among the crew gave trouble, and we had no one
with firmness enough to keep them in check. Finally to preserve order
the whole community was broken up into six squads. It was rather a 
mercy that we had to keep at work to find sufficient food. It relieved
the tedium of the life, and kept us from despair. At the time we had
been four or five months on the island and become acclimatised
and were in better health. Our worst trouble was that our cooking 
utensils were nearly all worn out, and we had to depend on hollow
stones, which we used as frying pans. Against that we had stored
some hundreds of gallons of bird oil for our lamps which we kept
burning all night. Early in January, 1870, we built on an eminence
a high square tower of turf to attract the notice of passing ships,
and to shelter the man on lookout. We had to secure the turf
as best we could with a piece of hoop iron. ON January 14, a 
vessel passed us, but took no notice.

"Sail Ho!"

A week later, on January 21, the man on the lookout
shouted "Sail ho!" and rushed two flags up on the flagstaff
- a piece of canvas and a blanket. We lit two fires. The vessel
at first seemed to take no notice, and our hearts fell. Then she
headed towards us and our people could not contain their delight.
She came within a mile and lowered two boats, but could find no
landing. Our sailmaker jumped into the water and was pulled aboard
and showed them where the landing place was. The ship was the 
Young Phoenix, an Amercian whaler. Captain Giffard was in one of
the boats. He gave us some bread and promised to take
us off the next morning. However, when he was told there
was a lady ashore, he brought his boat close in and took
Mrs. Wordsworth, her son, two invlaids, and the second mate.
The last thing I did was to make five crossed of wood, which 
were placed to mark the graves of those who had died on
the island. Then we went off without a single regret except
for those who were dead. Captain Gifford received us with
the utmost kindness, fed us, clothed us, and treated us well.

The Waratah.

'Do I think the people of the Waratah are likely to be on the
Crozets? Who can say? There is a chance, and the islands
ought to be searched. What they must have What they must
have felt if through a break in the fog they caught a glimpse
of the Sabine standing off I can guess, but I don't suppose
that anyone else in Melbourne can."

Alas, Waratah and her complement were never discovered stranded on the Crozets. Poor visibility due to persistent fog, does make one wonder about thoroughness of the Sabine search...


Apostles Island. 

Saturday, 28 May 2016



Doddington was an East Indiaman of the British East India Company (EIC). She made two trips for the EIC to Bombay, China, and Mokha. On her third trip she was sailing to India to remain there when she was wrecked on 17 July 1755 at Bird Island in Algoa Bay, near present-day Port Elizabeth.[3][4] The ship was carrying a hoard of gold belonging to Clive of India, which modern treasure hunters looted. The controversy over these depredations resulted in changes to international maritime treaties to better protect underwater cultural heritage.

The Doddington sailed from Dover on 22 April 1755 bound to Fort St George in India under the command of Captain James Sampson in the company of the Stretham (carrying Clive of India), Pelham, Edgecote, and Houghton. The ships were separated en route to Porto Praya, but re-united again at the port where they all stopped to take on provisions. On 27 May 1755, the three ships departed the Cape Verde islands together, but were once again separated after the master of the Doddington took a more southerly route than the other ships. After seven weeks, the ship rounded the Cape of Good Hope. After sailing eastwards for a day, the ship was on a heading of East-North-East, when at 1 am she struck a rock in Algoa Bay.
Doddington (East Indiaman) is located in Eastern Cape
Doddington wreck site
Doddington wreck site
Port Elizabeth
Port Elizabeth
Eastern Cape, South Africa
Of the original crew and passengers of 270, only 23 initially survived while the other 247 passengers and crew died with the ship. The castaways subsisted for seven months on fish, birds and eggs on a nearby island, which they named Bird Island.[Note 3] One of their number, a carpenter, was able to help them make them a sloop, the Happy Deliverance, on which they were finally able to get off the island on 16 February 1756.[3][5] The sloop was seaworthy enough to take the survivors on an eventful journey up the east coast of Africa via St Lucia and Delagoa Bay,[3][6] where the survivors sold her before travelling on to India. Captain Norton Hutchinson, now captain of the East Indiaman Carnarvon, took them on board and carried them to Madras.[7]


The ship was carrying a consignment of gold and silver, known as "Clive of India's Gold", which was controversially looted in recent times by Port Elizabeth treasure hunters.[8][9] A third of the 1,200 gold coins were eventually returned to South Africa after a four-year legal wrangle in London. The high profile court case highlighted various shortcomings in both South African and international maritime law.[10] The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation monitored the case closely, as it set an important precedent for the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage that it subsequently published.

The Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage is a treaty that was adopted on 2 November 2001 by the General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.[1] The convention is intended to protect "all traces of human existence having a cultural, historical or archaeological character," which have been under water for over 100 years.[1]:Art.1 This extends to the protection of shipwrecks, sunken cities, prehistoric art work, treasures that may be looted, sacrificial and burial sites, as well as old ports that cover the oceans floors.[3] The preservation of underwater cultural heritage is significant as it allows for the retelling of its numerous historical events. As part of its duty to conduct scientific research and provide continuous education on the importance of underwater cultural heritage, UNESCO strives to maintain these sites for the enjoyment of current and future generations. The convention may provide a customary framework to help raise awareness and seek to combat the illegal looting and pirating occurring in waters worldwide. As an international body, member states of the convention agree to work towards the preservation of sunken cultural property within their jurisdiction and the high seas.

Official Text
The official text of the convention sets out the obligations of the states parties in regards to the protection of underwater cultural heritage, defined in Article 1 as:
"all traces of human existence having a cultural, historical or archaeological character which have been partially or totally under water, periodically or continuously, for at least 100 years"[1]  (Waratah - 107 years)
Articles 1–4 define the convention and its objectives, as well as its relation to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the law of salvage.[1]
Articles 5–12 define varying levels of obligations and procedures within the four maritime zones (Territorial Sea, Contiguous Zone, Exclusive Economic ZoneInternational Waters) defined by UNCLOS.[1]
Articles 13–21 define further obligations, such as seizing illicitly recovered underwater cultural heritage, cooperating with other states parties, and providing training in underwater archaeology.[1]
Articles 22–35 clarify a number of points relevant to the functional aspects of the convention, such as the creation of statutory bodies, the settlement of disputes between states parties, and modes of ratification.[1]
The Annex
In addition to the official text of the convention, an annex of 36 rules governs the practical aspects of activities directed at underwater cultural heritage. States parties are required to ensure that these rules are applied within their territorial sea and contiguous zone,[1]:Art.7–8 and also that they are adhered to by all nationals and flag vessels.[1]:Art.16
Rules 1–8 define general principles. Key among these are the complete prohibition of the commercial exploitation of underwater cultural heritage[1]:Rule 2 and the principle that in situ preservation should always be considered as a first option.[1]:Rule 1 The rules also cover aspects such as project design, conservation, documentation, and reporting.


Abstaining from signing the 2001 UN Convention, the United States has stipulated that the term "all traces of human existence" is too broad, legally and as a mechanism tool for the protection of underwater cultural heritage for the preservation of future generations.[20] A problem that may arise with the 100-year period is that the beginning of this period is not clearly identified in the Convention, nor in the LOSC [21]
A criticism of the LOSC Articles are that they are considered ambiguous and obscure in nature. Article 149 fails to specify the manner in which objects of an archaeological nature are to be preserved and disposed of, as well as which mechanisms should be instituted in their conservation so as to benefit all current and future generations [11]
With the discovery of the Spanish galleon San José by the Colombian Government, and in an effort to claim the galleon with all its cargo, the Spanish Government tried to use the convention as a measure to stop Colombia from salvaging the ship.[22] Article 13 recognises sovereign immunity over sunken warships, [23] but Colombia is not a participating member of the convention. Separately, Colombia has called the galleon as part of its submerged patrimony thus it's constitutionally binded to protect and preserve the warship.

Extract from: Art and Cultural Heritage: Law, Policy and Practice.

'Although South Africa supported the adoption of the provisions of the Convention at the UNESCO General Conference, the United Kingdom was not satisfied with the provisions included in the text and abstained from the voting on the adoption of the Convention. UK concerns centred on the extent of coastal state jurisdiction, the inclusion of warships in the scope of the Convention and the failure to explicitly limit the scope of the convention only to UCH (underwater cultural heritage) declared to be of archaeological or historical significance. The UK was also consistently opposed to any provision that would restrict the ability of private salvors to continue to recover and trade in underwater cultural heritage.

In the case of the Doddington in South Africa the following has been made clear. Historical wrecks are very different from other heritage sites and resources, and that they present different management and legal problems, which require different solutions. The assumption that the National Monuments Act was not only the appropriate piece of legislation for the prosecution of a wreck offence, such as the case of the Doddington coins, but that it had international applicability has clearly shown to be flawed. Fortunately the avenue of Admiralty Law was open in this case. It is clear, that the new compliance agency, SAHRA, (south African Heritage Resources Agency) will have to reconsider its approach to international cases in the future,.

Furthermore, disputes relating to wrecks will be heard in terms of different concepts of law in different courts that have different rules and procedures. This raises the appropriateness of the inclusion of historical wrecks in a piece of general heritage legislation like the Old National Monuments Act and the National Heritage Resources Act. The scrutiny to which both these pieces of legislation were subjected in the Doddington case has suggested that the provisions they contain relating to the protection of historical wrecks and artifacts are not clear, and that it is a flaw in both that the bulk of the legal provisions relating to wrecks are contained in the Regulations that accompany them, rather than in the legislation itself. In virtually all other countries with a rich shipwreck resource, separate legislation has been enacted for historical wrecks that acknowledges their unique legal status and management problems, and although the idea for a separate South African act is not new, it has never been properly considered. 

The case of the Doddington coins has thus served the important purpose of highlighting a number of fundamental problems and challenges relating to the management of historical shipwrecks in South Africa and to South African heritage legislation. It's greatest importance, however, lies perhaps in the fact that through this case, the South African Heritage Compliance Agency demonstrated to South Africa and the the world that it not only has the will to enforce the legislation, but that its decision to do so will no longer be judged entirely according to whether or not SAHRA thinks the case will be successful. The message is clear, the heritage authority won't tolerate the plundering of our cultural heritage.'    

The above illustrates the complexity of tackling cultural heritage relating to shipwrecks along our coast. In the case of Waratah, should her wreck ever be found, the extract makes it clear that unauthorized salvage of artifacts and trade will not be tolerated, further reinforced by the Convention, making the sale of such objects overseas, illegal. It is reassuring that the South African authorities view shipwrecks as a significant component of cultural heritage, to be protected, as it should be.

The problem is a conundrum.  Wrecks older than 100 years are difficult to locate, incurring great cost in the process. Unless there is a monetary salvage component I do not believe there are wealthy altruists lining up to explore the continental shelf off South Africa to enrich our cultural heritage by identifying those wrecks which have been lost to date. I am sure that it is why the UK had issues with the Convention and across the board prevention of salvors recovering and trading in underwater artifacts. Without such salvors, undiscovered wrecks would remain as such and hardly be a contribution to cultural heritage. 

If Waratah is located there is every chance she is silted over and the process of preserving the wreck and grave site would be a very significant challenge indeed. If the 'abandonment' issue is confirmed in the case of the Waratah, salvors would be entitled to recovering and selling valuable cargo, namely gold, silver, copper and lead. The challenge would be to extricate this cargo without damaging the wreck site. From what I understand, in addition to acquiring the various permits, including that from the Department of Customs, a project plan would have to be presented to SAHRA, which would outline a salvage operation that would not damage the local environment (underwater) and preserve the integrity of the wreck site. The exploration team would also have to be trained in underwater archaeology.

I believe that artifacts recovered would have significant meaning in the context of a museum, such as been the case with objects retrieved from the Titanic. But bearing in mind the wishes of descendants of those who were lost with Waratah, the disposal of such objects would need to be handled with sensitivity and care. 

The above extracts highlight an important initiative to protect UCH, but as the author suggested, specific legislation needs to be enacted in South Africa to prevent endless time and money wasting court procedures to reach an end goal of returning Waratah's legacy to the public domain. Illicit plundering of wrecks and trading of artifacts in the 'underworld' will not cease I fear, but if wrecks are publicised in terms of cultural heritage I do believe it will make it more difficult for illegal salvors to operate in the seas off our coast.