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Reproduced courtesy of Rhod Cook

Seamanship notebook Frederick Norton Cook, Midshipman RAN

Date: 1925
Dimensions:
Overall: 330 × 210 × 25 mm
Medium: Paper, cloth, ink, thread, glue
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Rhod Cook
Object Copyright: © Rhod Cook
Classification:Books and journals
Object Name: Book
Object No: 00054700

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    Description
    Seamanship notebook belonging to Frederick Cook, RAN while studying in the United Kingdom for his Examination in Seamanship for the Rank of Lieutenant. This object is one of a large collection of documents, photographs, uniforms, ship badges and ephemera associated with the Royal Australian Navy service of brothers William Cook and Frederick Cook. Both men entered service prior to the Second World War, were seconded to the Royal Navy, and underwent training at Greenwich and Portsmouth. Frederick Cook later gained fame as the only Australian survivor of HMS Royal Oak, torpedoed by a German U-boat in October 1939. William Cook was the youngest commander of an Australian destroyer during the Second World War, and was First Lieutenant of HMAS Wyatt Earp, the primary research vessel for the Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition in 1947-48.
    SignificanceFrederick Cook's Seamanship notebook dates to the immediate pre-Second World War period, and is particularly significant because it features several incredibly detailed hand-drawn sketches and diagrams that compliment the notes contained in the notebook. Extensively illustrated documents of this kind that address relatively 'mundane' aspects of naval seamanship are incredibly rare.

    Frederick Cook served with distinction during the Second World War and was mentioned in despatches twice. He was also presented to King George IV and awarded the DSC for gallantry. He was also the only Australian aboard HMS Royal Oak when it was torpedoed at Scapa Flow in September 1939, and one of only 400 of Royal Oak's complement of 1200 to survive the ship's loss.
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