Search the Collection
Advanced Search

Reproduced courtesy of Captain Peter Cumming

Logbook of the pearling lugger JOHN LOUIS

Date: 3 April - 23 June 1971
Dimensions:
Overall: 325 x 200 mm, 0.1 kg
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Captain Peter Cumming
Object Copyright: © Captain Peter Cumming
Classification:Books and journals
Object Name: Logbook
Object No: 00018412
Related Place:Clarence Strait, Croker, Cape, Wessel, Cape, Booby Island, Carpentaria, Gulf of, Dampier, Anna Plains, Roebuck Bay, Broome,

User Terms

    Description
    The log book of the pearling lugger JOHN LOUIS, written during the period of April 31971 - 23 June 1971 by Captain Peter Cumming.
    SignificanceDuring the short time he skippered the JOHN LOUIS Captain Peter Cumming introduced new diving methods to be adopted by the rest of Pearls Pty Ltd's fleet. He orginally used a team of abalone divers from Malacoota in East Gippsland to introduce hookah to collect pearl shell.
    HistoryThe log was written by Captain Peter Cumming who was Marine Superintendent of Pearls Pty Ltd from 1966 to 1972. Cumming was skipper of the JOHN LOUIS from 3 April to 23 June 1971 and used the vessel to trial the use of hookah breathing apparatus in collecting pearl shell.
    Other vessels at that time carried crews of about 12 Japanese and Malay divers using hard hat diving methods. Captain Cumming hired abalone divers from Victoria and used them to trial the use of hookah gear.They worked with two divers on outrigger booms collecting pearl shell and one tender. Three other crew members processed the pearl shell.
    With half the number of crew JOHN LOUIS was able to collect as much pearl shell as other vessels and with the obvious advantages of hookah gear it was soon adopted by other boats to become the standard technique in the industry .
    JOHN LOUIS worked on two pearl shell areas off Thursday Island and one in Papua New Guinea.
    The air compressor which was used was comprised of a Grisby air compressor attached to a Compac engine.
    The crew usually worked with two divers on outrigger booms collecting pearl shell and one tender. Three other crew members processed the pearl shell. The boat carried three Torres Strait Islanders working their passage to Kuri Bay.
    In contrast to the new hookah method, boats with Japanese and Malay divers using hard hats carried 12 divers.
    On the most of the islands which Peter visited he planted coconut palms because he liked to think that they would provide fruit for visitors and would be a record of his visit.
    Related People

    Discuss this Object

    Comments

    Please log in to add a comment.