Photographs supplied by Arthur Garland

The plaque commemorates those who drowned in the wreck of the Ship "Neva" in May 1835 near Navarine Reef.  Only 22 people of the 200 on board the ship reached land, and of these only 15 survived. The plaque was unveiled in 1988, Australia`s bicentenary year.

In January 1835 a three-masted barque sailed from Cork Harbour, Ireland, bound for Australia, with 241 people on board. Most were Irishwomen who had been convicted of various crimes and sentenced to transportation to the colony of New South Wales. Some were the wives of Irishmen who had already been banished. There were also more than 30 children, mostly babies and toddlers.

On May 13th the ship hit a reef north of King Island, off Tasmania, and sank with the loss of 224 lives. A few survivors managed to get to King Island, but most of those died on its beaches from cold, exposure and shock. A fortnight after the wreck, the castaways met up with two of the crew of the cutter Tartar, which had been wrecked further south earlier in the month. Early in June the cutter Sarah Ann arrived looking for the missing Tartar and most of those at King Island were taken on to George Town, Tasmania. 

It was the second-largest maritime disaster in Australian history and the greatest catastrophe in almost a century of convict transportation.





Address:King Island, Cape Wickham, 7256
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -39.589831
Long: 143.940588
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
View Google Map


Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Disaster
Actual Event Start Date:14-May-1835
Actual Event End Date:14-May-1835


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:1988
Front Inscription

1788 - 1988

To Remember Those Who Drowned In The Wreck Of The "Neva" On May 14th 1835 Near Navarine Reef.

Of 200 People (Mainly Women Convicts) On Board Only 22 Reached Safety And Of Those Only 15 Survived Till Morning. These And Two Sailors From The Wrecked "Tartar" Were Rescued On June 14th By Charles Friend Who Had Set Sail To Find The "Tartar".

Seven Skeletons Found In The Bush, Believed To Be From The "Neva" Were Buried Here Later.
Infant Son Of Mr. and Mrs. Neale, Assistant Keeper Died January 1862
Infant Son Of Thomas And Emily Lippiatt Died March 20th, 1871

Rest In Peace
An Australian Bicentennial Project
With Financial Assistance From The Bicentennial Authority

Left Side Inscription



Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
Proudly sponsored by UBC Web Design