Photographs supplied by Bryan Cole

The bronze statue commemorates Matthew Flinders cat, Trim, and is a recognition of the Encounter meeting of 1802. Trim was made from the cast created for the State Library of New South Wales by sculptor, John Cornwell.

Trim was born in 1799, aboard the ship HMS Reliance on a voyage from the Cape of Good Hope to Botany Bay. The kitten fell overboard, but managed to swim back to the vessel and climb aboard by scaling a rope; taking note of his strong survival instinct and intelligence, Flinders and the crew made him their favourite.

Trim sailed with Flinders on HMS Investigator on his voyage of circumnavigation around the Australian mainland, and survived the shipwreck of the Porpoise on Wreck Reef in 1803. When Flinders was accused of spying and imprisoned by the French in Mauritius on his return voyage to England Trim shared his captivity until his unexplained disappearance, which Flinders attributed to his being stolen and eaten by hungry slaves.

In the immensity of ocean to the south of Terra Australis, two ships met by accident on 8 April 1802, one sailing from the east and the other from the west.

The English ship Investigator, commanded by Matthew Flinders, cleared the decks for action, but also flew a white flag of truce. Nicolas Baudin, captain of the French ship Le Geographe thought the ship approaching was his companion vessel Le Naturaliste which he had last seen several weeks ago. In addition to the French flag, he hoisted an English flag. The meeting place was about 5 miles off the South Australian coast at latitude 35º 40' South, longitude 138º 58' East. Flinders later named this location Encounter Bay, as it is known today. Baudin called it 'Baie des invalides' and Freycinet recorded 'Baie Mollien.'




Address:Esplanade, Visitor Information Centre, Victor Harbor, 5211
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -35.557138
Long: 138.624741
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Sculpture
Monument Theme:Culture
Actual Event Start Date:08-April-1802
Actual Event End Date:08-April-1802
Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au