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Port Elliott Shipwrecks

Port Elliott Shipwrecks

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Published by draculavanhelsing
Shipwrecks off Port Elliott in South Australia
Shipwrecks off Port Elliott in South Australia

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: draculavanhelsing on Nov 16, 2010
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11/16/2010

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South Australian Shipwrecks
Maritime Heritage Trail 
PORT ELLIOTPORT ELLIOT
Maritime Heritage Trail 
Heritage South Australia
Government of South Australia
Horseshoe Bay based on a view circa 1860.
Sketch by Russell and Doris Mitchell, courtesy Port Elliot National Trust
SEAPORT FOR THE RIVER MURRAY TRADE
The Murray is Australia’s major river. Its development as asignificant inland transport route required by-passing thehazardous mouth and establishing a rail link between Goolwaand an anchorage in Encounter Bay. In 1850, despitecontroversy and criticism, Governor Young selected PortElliot as the coastal outlet for the river trade.The first trading vessel arrived in July 1851 withconstruction materials for the jetty, and by 1866 more than500 vessels had used the port. Unfortunately costly harbourimprovements could not prevent many groundings and theloss of seven vessels between 1853 and 1864.
In May 1853 tragedy struck the settlement with the loss of theschooner
Emu
and its four crew. While the vessel’s loss wasattributed to unfavourable weather conditions, the accident didlittle to enhance the port’s reputation as a safe harbour.Memories of the ill-fated
Emu
faded and local confidence inPort Elliot’s future grew, with a peak occupancy of 85 vesselsduring 1855. That year also saw the arrival of the first vesselfrom overseas, the brig
Lady Emma
.Unfortunately in 1856 optimism gave way to despair as fourvessels came to grief in or adjacent to Horseshoe Bay.
PORT ELLIOT
The first tragedy occurred in February when the schooner
Commodore
anchored in an exposed position, dragged its anchorin gusty conditions and struck the rocky promontory nowknown as Commodore Point.In July Port Elliot’s reputation was again tarnished when the
 Josephine Loizeau
broke from its moorings during a gale and wasdriven ashore. A later inspection revealed that the vessel hadmistakenly shackled to the buoy chain instead of the mooringcable.
 jetty
  b  r e a  k   w a  t e  r
FrenchmanRock Commodore PointPullen IslandThe SistersFreeman Nob
3654271
Swimmers are warned that the remains of these wrecks are often exposed in Horseshoe Bay and may be a safety hazard 
 Horseshoe Bay
SHIPWRECKSOFPORTELLIOT: 1.
Emu
2.
Commodore
3.
 Josephine Loizeau
4.
Lapwing 
5.
Harry
6.
Flying Fish
7.
 Athol
PORT ELLIOT

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