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Thirty-Fifth Anniversary Hobart Regatta program

Date: 28 January 1875
Medium: Silk, ink
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Royal Hobart Regatta Association
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Silk program
Object No: 00048319
Related Place:Hobart,

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    Description
    This silk program with a red fringed border was produced for the 35th Anniversary Regatta held on 28 January 1875. The regatta was organised by the Hobart Regatta Association and commemorates the sighting of the west coast of Van Diemen's Land by Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1642. It was held under the patronage of the Governor Sir F A Weld Esq.

    The program details various rowing and sailing events as well as a novelty duck hunt. It is type set in two columns and was printed at the Mercury steam press office in Hobart.
    SignificanceRegattas were central to competitive boating in the 19th century and functioned as a social and sporting event, as well as a marker of official anniversaries in a public aquatic spectacle. Civic leaders, politicians and merchants offered patronage and sponsorship.
    HistoryThe Hobart Regatta was inaugurated in 1838 a year after the Sydney event. It became a symbol of the colony's independent regional identity. Far more than just a yacht race, the regatta would celebrate the local anniversary of Abel Tasman's 'discovery' of the island in 1642, demonstrate the unity and patronage of civil and military elites, promote whaling and other free-settler enterprises, and even remove the colony's convict stain.

    The day was a public holiday and free food and beer was given to settlers who came to watch the aquatic competition.

    By the early 1900s boat races competed with novelty entertainments, such as the greasy-pole pillow fights, comic stunts, fancy costumes, bearded ladies and snake charmers. Tasmanians still passionately claim the supremacy of their regatta tradition and regional identity.

    The Hobart Regatta continues to be held annually on the Derwent River and today is held over three days.

    Additional Titles

    Web title: Thirty-Fifth Anniversary Hobart Regatta program

    Collection title: Hobart Regatta Silk Program collection

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