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AURORA berthed in Sydney Harbour, Circular Quay West, before Ernest Shackleton's Antarctic expedition

The 386 ton barquentine-rigged sealer AURORA was built in Dundee in 1876. The vessel was used by Sir Douglas Mawson on his Australasian Antarctic expedition of 1911-1914. In 1914 AURORA underwent a refit in Sydney before being used to transport Sir Ernest Shackleton's Ross Sea party during the expedition of 1914-1917. During this time AURORA was beset in the ice and drifted for 9 months in the Ross Sea. In 1917 the vessel was used to rescue the surviving members of the Ross Sea party from Cape Evans.


This photo is part of the Australian National Maritime Museum’s William Hall collection. The Hall collection combines photographs from both William J Hall and his father William Frederick Hall. The images provide an important pictorial record of recreational boating in Sydney Harbour, from the 1890s to the 1930s – from large racing and cruising yachts, to the many and varied skiffs jostling on the harbour, to the new phenomenon of motor boating in the early twentieth century. The collection also includes studio portraits and images of the many spectators and crowds who followed the sailing races.


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Object number: ANMS1092[163]

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Taken in December 1914