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14 November 2014

The steamer Trident


The heading as it appeared in the Australian Town and Country Journal Saturday September 15th 1894.
68 gross ton timber screw steamer Trident built by George Dent Jnr of Huskisson in 1886 length 84ft, beam 18ft with a 6ft deep hold capable of 8 knots.
Owned by the Moruya Steam Navigation Company.

Moruya Bar.
A narrow passage of about 60 yards with a long breakwater on the northern side and shallow reefs and sand bars on the southern side, swift tide changes creating strong currents working against the sea, sand build up creating breaking bars of water across the entrance. Add a rough and rolling sea and it can be a difficult and disastrous place for any vessel to enter.

September 5th 4.pm.
she left Sydney and had an uneventful trip making good time south carrying general cargo and passengers.

September 6th 10.30 am. Captain Stephen Canty had been in command for the last 4 years.
When she arrived at the entrance to Moruya river the sea was rough with a heavy north easterly swell across the bar.

‘Wait till high tide”.
At the time of the Tridents arrival the pilot signaled to him, ‘Wait till high tide”. It was high tide at 12.30pm by the Almanac, and about a quarter of an hour before then the ‘signal to stand in was hoisted”

September 6th 12.30pm.
All hands made ready to enter the bar, at a critical time during the entry her stern was lifted high out of the water, the effect being that the rudder had no hold on the water and the propeller raced, the steamer refused to answer her helm and “broached-to”, two seas broke over her in quick succession, before she had time to recover she was dashed onto the rocks on the northern end of the breakwater and the bottom knocked out of her.

“Being glad to escape with their bare lives”.
Captain Canty gave the necessary orders to the engine room to back off and they were promptly obeyed.
When the vessel was being driven in, he gave the orders to launch the boat, The captain and one crew stayed on board, all other hands including 5 passengers entered the boat and were saved, they lost everything, being glad to escape with their bare lives.
Captain Canty and the before mentioned seaman had to swim for it.

The vessel sank in about 20ft of water, her hull being completely covered, and nothing but her masts, funnel and the coverings of the bridge visible.

She was later raised, the hull was found to be so injured she was not worth repairing.



Wednesday 7th August 1995. Evening news Sydney.
Blown up with dynamite.
An almanac (also archaically spelled almanack and almanach) is an annual publication that includes information such as weather forecasts, farmers' planting dates, tide tables, and tabular information often arranged according to the calendar. Astronomical data and various statistics are found in almanacs, such as the times of the rising and setting of the sun and moon, eclipses, hours of full tide, church festivals, and so on.

Broached – to.
A boat broaches when its heading suddenly changes towards the wind due to wind/sail or sea interactions for which the rudder cannot compensate. This causes the boat to enter a Death roll, rolling dangerously and if not controlled may lead to a capsize and turning turtle.

A ship's steering mechanism, ship's wheel.

Something that provides protection for or against something.
A wall that is part of a ship’s sides and that is above the ships upper decks.
 Ref: Trove

A previous cheesy incident.
As reported in the National Advocate Bathurst, Thursday 25th June 1891.
During what was described as a terrific hurricane along the south east coast, the steamer Trident put into Ulladulla Harbour for shelter, with one of her masts blown out and the Bulwarks stove in.
The beach was strewn with cheese of which her cargo consisted.

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