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A memorial commemorates the pearlers lost in Bathurst Bay cyclone of the 4th March 1899. At least 307 crew members died from a pearling fleet of over 100 vessels plus other craft (with 152 sunk or wrecked, some found kilometres inland), as a result of a 14.6-metre storm surge.

Over 100 Aboriginals also died in forest country and trying to help shipwrecked men when the back surge swept them into the sea and they drowned. Tonnes of fish and some dolphins were found 15 metres above sea level up to several kilometres inland and rocks were embedded in trees. On Flinders Island dolphins were found 15.2 metres up on the cliffs. On that night of 4 March, Constable J.M.Kenny reported that a 48-foot storm surge swept over their camp at Barrow Point (south of Cape Melville) atop a 12 metre high ridge and reached 5 kilometres inland, the largest storm surge ever recorded.

After crossing Bathurst Bay, Mahina - now generally known as the Bathurst Bay 'Hurricane' - continued on, with diminishing strength but caused considerable flooding, south-west across the peninsula to the south-eastern corner of the Gulf of Carpentaria. There it doubled back on its tracks and 'died' altogether over the land on 10 March.

Location

Address:Cape Melville, 220 kilometres North of Cooktown, Bathurst Bay
State:QLD
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -14.175556
Long: 144.492222
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Disaster
Sub-Theme:Storms
Actual Event STart Date:4-March-1899
Actual Event End Date:4-March-1899

Dedication

Front Inscription

             In Memory 
                  Of 
          The Pearlers
Lost In The Dreadful Hurricane
      On 5th March, 1899,
ALFRED St JOHN OUTRIDGE
Interred Here, Aged 39
                And 
HAROLD ARTHUR OUTRIDGE
His Nephew, Aged 23 
            "Sagitta" 
                 Also
EDWARD CHARLES ATTROW
Aged 20. ( "Silvery Wave")
When Thou Passest Through The Waters,
I Will Be With Thee; 43. Isiah v.2.

               Also 

E.JEFFERSON]  "Silvery Wave" 
J.NICHOLAS    ]

R.CAMERON   ] "Sagitta" 
R.B.MURRAY   ]

C.O.FUHRMANN. D.LEE ] Lightship
H.KARR. D.CROWLEY    ]

50 Vessels Wrecked Or Foundered And Over 300 Coloured Men Drowned

"The Blood Of Jesus Christ His Son, Cleanseth Us From All Sin"

F. M. Downes
Brisbane


 

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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