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A view of Dawes Battery at the entrance of Sydney Cove, New South Wales

Date: c 1819
Overall: 141 x 220 mm
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Engraving
Object No: 00000870
Place Manufactured:Sydney Cove

User Terms

    This engraving appeared as a black and white plate (number XII) in Wallis' 'An Historical Account of The Colony of New South Wales and its Dependent Settlements; in Illustration of Twelve Views, Engraved By W. Preston, a Convict, from Drawings Taken on the Spot' (1821).

    This work is based on drawings by Captain James Wallis of the 46th Regiment. The view of the Battery at Dawes Point overlooks Bennelong Point, close to where Fort Macquarie was constructed in 1821 and where the Sydney Opera House now stands.
    SignificanceDefence of the colony was an important consideration for the early British settlers and this work documents a strategic fortification in Sydney Harbour.
    HistoryDawes Point was the site of the first battery and fort, established in 1791. During the 1800s the defence system was transferred to the headlands of Sydney Harbour and in the 1920s most of Dawes Point Battery was demolished to allow for the construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

    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 not just a penal site and supported plans to build a structured orderly town plan.

    Early development in the cove consisted of basic housing and some public buildings. Convicts lived in timber huts and tents prior to the construction of the Hyde Park Barracks in 1819. A stone quarry was established where the male convicts worked and a number of farming plots were cultivated.

    James Wallis was an officer in the 46th Regiment and arrived in NSW in 1814 onboard the GENERAL HEWITT, the ship which brought convict artist Joseph Lycett to Sydney. Both men were in Newcastle where Wallis ran the settlement from 1816-1818 and they used Walter Preston to engrave their drawings.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: A view of Dawes Battery at the entrance of Sydney Cove, New South Wales

    Primary title: A view of Dawes Battery at the entrance of Sydney Cove, New South Wales

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