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Harry B Williams and friends at the seaside

Date: 1900-1918
Overall: 85 x 145 mm
Medium: Silver gelatin print
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Piers Jones
Object Name: Photograph
Object No: 00017064
Place Manufactured:Australia
Related Place:UNKNOWN,

User Terms

    This photograph depicts a group of men and women at the seaside. Harry Brisbane Williams, photographer for the NSW Water Board and amateur artist is on the far right, with his camera under his arm. Artist Alfred Coffey (1869-1950) is third from the right.
    SignificanceThe Harry Brisbane Williams photographic collection provides an interesting record of a range of activities on Sydney Harbour from the 1890s into the 1920s. An enthusiastic amateur boater and photographer, Williams’ photographs capture a range of subjects – pleasure cruising on his motor launch on the Lane Cove River, yachting on Sydney Harbour, foreshore social activities, surf lifesaving, cargo ships, battle cruisers of the United States fleet, model yachting and the shipbuilding industry. In particular, they are a wonderful personal record of the new phenomenon of leisure motor boating in the early twentieth century.
    HistoryHarry (Henry) Brisbane Williams was born in 1869 in Brisbane, Queensland, and later lived in Balmain and Point Piper - both on Sydney Harbour. Williams was an enthusiastic amateur boater, and took his motor launch SABLE on numerous excursions around Sydney Harbour and the Lane Cove River. He was the photographer for the Water Board of New South Wales, and was a keen amateur artist - becoming friends with a number of prominent Sydney artists including Alfred Coffey.

    Williams' photographs held in the museum's collection date from the 1890s into the 1950s. His images depict a range of vessels, from passenger ships, cargo ships, Royal Australian Navy vessels, United States Navy battle cruisers, yachts, motor launches, sailing ships, tugboats, ferries, row boats and even paddle steamers on the Darling and Murray Rivers. Williams captures a range of social activities, including Fleet Week celebrations, rowing sculls, surf life saving, picnics, pleasure cruising and swimming. He also photographed a range of ship building activities, dry docks, slip ways and waterfront construction.

    Alfred Coffey was born in Ireland 1869 died 1950. Studied Royal Art Society School, Sydney. In 1897 joined Julian Ashton at his new school. Taught at University of Sydney, East Sydney Technical College. In 1900 he was the official Australian representative at the international art congress at Dresden. Painted in East Indies 1922. Work represented in Sydney and Adelaide
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