A reminiscence of the early days of Hobson’s Bay

Carrie Victoria Dennis, 1872-19391891

State Library Victoria

State Library Victoria

A moonlit scene, depicting the prison hulk 'Success' in Hobson's Bay. The vessel was originally built for the East India Company in 1790, and after several years' service as a trader between India and Britain, it was chartered to bring emigrants to Victoria. On her arrival in the colony in May 1852, she was completely deserted by her crew, who raced to the diggings in search of gold.

After several months lying idle, the boat was purchased by the Victorian Government for use as a floating prison, moored off Williamstown. In later years she was used to store explosives before being sold and then deliberately scuttled off Port Jackson, Sydney, in 1885.

The 'Success' was later refloated, sailing the world as a relic of convict days, even though she had never been used as a transportation vessel. In 1912, despite her age and chequered history, she sailed across the Atlantic to New York, having been acquired by American interests. After many years' service, 'Success' eventually caught fire and burned to the waterline in 1946.

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  • Title: A reminiscence of the early days of Hobson’s Bay
  • Creator: Carrie Victoria Dennis, 1872-1939
  • Date: 1891
  • Location: Hobson's Bay, Victoria
  • Rights: This work is out of copyright. No copyright restrictions apply.
  • lithograph: Painting
  • View more information about this image in the State Library Victoria catalogue: http://search.slv.vic.gov.au/MAIN:SLV_VOYAGER1783573
  • View a full-size version of this image: http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/214096
  • Physical dimensions: 44.3 x 74.1 cm. in frame 75.3 x 105.3 x 11.0 cm.
  • Medium: Oil on canvas
  • A.E. Ferris: Carrie Victoria Dennis was born in Collingwood and exhibited this single painting at the Victorian Artists' Society exhibition in August 1893. Little else is known about her, except that she lived in Williamstown, where she died in 1939.


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