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ANMM Collection Reproduced courtesy of Donald Bastock


Date: c 1988
Overall: 252 x 353 mm
Medium: Oil on composite board
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from John Bastock
Object Copyright: © Donald Bastock
Object Name: Painting
Object No: 00016906
Place Manufactured:Australia

User Terms

    The armoured cruiser HMS NELSON is depicted flying the flag of Rear Admiral George Tryon CB RN. NELSON was flagship of the Australia Station in 1882-1888 and active in the protection of British shipping, trade and political interests.
    SignificanceThis painting represents the presence of HMS NELSON on the Australia Station in 1882-88 and the protection of Australian waterways and coastlines by British naval ships during the 19th century.
    HistoryHMS NELSON was an armoured cruiser built by John Elder & Co at Glasgow, Launched in 1876 and commissioned in 1881. It received a commission to the Australia Station in 1882. NELSON acted as flagship of the station and visited major ports in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands attracting welcoming responses from the populations. In 1888 NELSON's duties were taken over by HMS ORLANDO and left for England. The ship's later years of service included acting as a guard ship in Portsmouth, undertaking troop voyages, acting as a dockyard reserve and becoming a training ship for stokers in 1902. In 1910 NELSON was sold and scuttled in Holland.

    NELSON was one of the last large British warships to have their major armament on the broadside and between decks. It was also the first iron-hulled twin-screw vessel of the Australia Station.

    During the 19th century Britain was preoccupied with increasing its colonial territories and maintaining the empire. The British Royal Navy (RN) at the height of its power divided the world into strategic zones or stations that were manned by a squadron of warships responsible for cruising and protecting British territories and shipping. Until the 1850s Australasia was covered by the East India Station, a vast area that included the Indian Ocean and the waters around Australia. After pressure from the colonial governments of New Zealand and Australia the RN formed the Australia Station as a separate command in 1859.

    The station was established to guard British shipping and trade in the Australasian region and ensure sea routes were open and safe. In 1859 the Australia Station included the territories of New Zealand, Chatham Island, New Hebrides, Loyalty Islands, Fiji and Australia.
    Additional Titles

    Assigned title: HMS NELSON

    Web title: HMS NELSON

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