The Logbooks Of The Lady Nelson, By Ida Lee

 -  But discovery cannot claim her solely
for itself. While she was stationed at Sydney there was scarcely a
dependency of - Page 9
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But Discovery Cannot Claim Her Solely For Itself.

While she was stationed at Sydney there was scarcely a dependency of the mother colony that was not more

Or less indebted to her, either for proclaiming it a British possession, or for bringing it settlers and food, or for providing it with means of defence against the attacks of natives.

In the early history of Victoria the Lady Nelson occupies a niche somewhat similar to that which the Endeavour fills in the annals of New South Wales, but while Cook and the Endeavour discovered the east coast and then left it, the Lady Nelson, after charting the bare coast-line of Victoria, returned again and again to explore its inlets and to penetrate its rivers, her boats discovering the spacious harbour at the head of which Melbourne now stands.

The Lady Nelson also went northward as well as southward, and though many of her logbooks are missing, some survive, and one describes how, in company with the Investigator under Captain Flinders, she examined the Queensland shore as far as the Cumberland Islands. Later she accompanied the Mermaid, under Captain King, to Port Macquarie when he followed Flinders' track through Torres Strait, and during her long period of service she visited different parts of the coast, including Moreton Bay, Port Essington, and Melville Island. Precisely how many voyages she made as a pioneer will probably never be known. The ship, at least, played many parts: now acting as King's messenger and carrying despatches from the Governor to Norfolk Island; now fetching grain grown at the Hawkesbury, or coals from Newcastle for the use of the increasing population at Sydney; and at another time carrying troops and settlers to the far distant north.

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