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Photograph of Oskar Speck in a kayak, Timor

Date: 1933-1939
Overall: 60 x 90 mm
Medium: Paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from John Ferguson
Object Name: Photograph
Object No: ANMS1249[008]

User Terms

    This photograph depicts Oskar Speck in his kayak in Timor.
    SignificanceThis collection documents a significant feat of sportsmanship as well as a 1930s travel-adventure and what became a World War II internment and migration story.
    HistoryOskar Speck (1905 - 1995) was a German adventurer who, in the 1930s, paddled his kayak SUNNSCHIEN (SUNSHINE) from Europe to Australia. He departed from Ulm in Germany on 18 June 1932, paddling down the Danube at the start of a 50,000km voyage to Australia. His voyage of seven years and four months saw him stopping at ports in Germany, Austria, Hungary, former Yugoslavia, former Macedonia, Greece, Cyprus, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Burma, Malaysia, Indonesia, Iran Jaya, Papua New Guinea and Australia (Saibai Island). He arrived on Saibai Island near Papua New Guinea in the Northern Torres Strait on 20 September 1939. Speck arrived with a swastika on the bow of his 5.3 metre German built Folbot kayak a few days after Australia declared war with Germany.

    Speck was travelling on a German passport and was promptly arrested as an enemy alien on his arrival on Thursday Island. Speck was detained at the Tatura internment camp for the duration of the war.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: Photograph of Oskar Speck in a kayak, Timor

    Collection title: Oskar Speck memorabilia

    Assigned title: Oskar Speck in kayak, Timor

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