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Reproduced courtesy of Lynne Norton


Date: 1948
Overall: 329 x 418 mm, 0.007 kg
Sheet: 329 x 418 mm
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Copyright: © Lynne Norton
Object Name: Drawing
Object No: 00027990
Place Manufactured:Sydney

User Terms

    Frank Norton has depicted Cockatoo Island Dockyard in Sydney. A bow of a ship is visible, surrounded by scaffolding and supported by beams from the drydock walls.
    SignificanceThis drawing represents the maintenance and construction methods for large ships. Dry docks allow maintenance workers access to parts of the vessel that are located under the water line.
    HistoryCockatoo Island is the largest island in Sydney Harbour and was first established as a penal settlement by the NSW colonial government in 1839. In 1851 the construction of a dockyard commenced and in 1857 the first ship was drydocked there. In 1913 Cockatoo Island was transferred to the Commonwealth Government and the dockyards evolved in pace with the technical development of ships.

    With the formation of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) in 1911, Cockatoo Island Dockyards began to construct naval ships, the first being HMAS WARREGO. The period during and after the First World War was busy and profitable, with the peak of employment occurring in 1919. However, the Great Depression severely affected the shipyard and in 1933 the Commonwealth Government transferred control of the island to Cockatoo Docks & Engineering Company. Due to a gradual increase in naval activities, the Dockyards were able to slowly recover and the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 again allowed the Dockyards to increase productivity.

    After the Second World War, Cockatoo Island Dockyards continued to be an important part of the Australian maritime infrastructure, but the controlling company changed hands many times until in 1992 when the Dockyards were decommissioned.

    Today, the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust has administrative control of Cockatoo Island it is used as a venue for many arts and entertainment events.
    Additional Titles

    Primary title: DOCKYARD

    Web title: Dockyard

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