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Part of a panorama across Sydney Harbour from Point Piper

Date: c 1905
Medium: Emulsion on glass
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Mr and Mrs Glassford
Classification:Photographs
Object Name: Glass plate negative
Object No: ANMS1092[190]

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    Description
    This image is part of a panorama that also consists of image ANMS1092[259] and ANMS1092[197].
    SignificanceThe Hall photographic collection provides an important pictorial record of recreational boating in Sydney Harbour from the 1890s to the 1930s. The collection documents the lively sailing scene in Sydney during this period and features images of vessels ranging from large racing and cruising yachts to the great array of skiffs and the emerging technologies of motorboats. Images of the many spectators and crowds who supported and followed the sailing races are also included in this visual record.
    HistoryThe white building with castellated turrets seen in the foreground of this image is Captain Samuel Charles' (1818-1909) house 'Cliff Towers'. 'Cliff Towers' was a dominating feature of Point Piper in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and had commanding views of Sydney Harbour.

    Cliff Towers was built in 1887 by Captain Charles who was his own architect and reportedly camped in the garden during construction to supervise the building of his home.

    Captain Charles was a master mariner, dairy farmer and politician who was born in Ireland, the son of a soldier. Charles came to Australia in 1844 where he worked as a mariner on the coastal trade.

    In 1855 he married Sarah Ann Mackay Gray, a local of Kiama, and settled in the district, buying the Eureka estate at North Kiama for the purpose of dairy farming. Charles began exporting dairy products from Australia to England, a venture which, along with a quarry he owned, made his fortune.

    Charles was alderman in the Kiama Municipal Council in the late 1860s and in 1875 entered the Legislative Assembly as the member for Kiama. Politically he was well-known for clashing with Sir Henry Parkes.

    Charles was a foundation member of the League of Ancient Mariners and in his retirement lived at Cliff Towers, Sydney, where he died at the age of 91 on 23 September 1909. He was buried at the Eureka estate and was survived by four sons and a daughter.
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