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Sydney N S Wales

Date: c 1840
Dimensions:
Overall: 77 x 162 mm
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Art
Object Name: Etching
Object No: 00000859
Place Manufactured:Sydney

User Terms

    Description
    Titled "Sydney, N.S.Wales" and marked "Etched by Carmichael", this picture shows activity in Sydney Cove, c. 1840. Viewed from the North shore. A paddle steamer makes its way in an easterly direction, possibly from Parramatta and a number of large sailing vessels lie at anchor.

    A number of prominent buildings can be seen, including Government House, Fort Macquarie, the Observatory and St James Church.
    SignificanceSeveral decades after the arrival of the First Fleet in 1788, Sydney started to grow and develop into a vibrant city. This work captures one moment -c. 1840- during the town's expansion and highlights the crucial role of maritime activities for economic growth and prosperity during the 19th and early 20th centuries.
    HistoryThe first steamship to Australia was the wooden paddle steamer SOPHIA JANE which arrived off Sydney on 16th May 1831. The next was the TAMAR in 1834, then JAMES WATT, WILLIAM THE FOURTH in 1838 and the CLONMEL in 1840. The steamer depicted in the image may be any one of these vessels.

    It was not until 1852 that a regular steamship service to Australia from Britain was started by the P&O ship CHUSAN and the Australian Royal Mail Steam Navigation Company's AUSTRALIAN.

    A European settlement at Sydney Cove was established by Governor Arthur Phillip when he arrived with the First Fleet on 26 January 1788. The cove was named in honour of the British Home Secretary, Thomas Townsend, Lord Sydney and chosen as the site of settlement over Botany Bay because it offered both fresh water and a secure place for ships to anchor. Phillip described Sydney Cove as having 'the best spring of water, and in which the ships can anchor so close to the shore that at a very small expense quays may be made at which the largest ships may unload'. He aimed to establish a flourishing colony and not just a penal site and supported plans to build a structured and well laid-out town.
    Additional Titles

    Secondary title: Sydney New South Wales

    Web title: Sydney N S Wales

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