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James Cook Monument
James Cook Monument

Photographs supplied by Diane Watson

The Captain Cook monument, erected 107 years after James Cook`s landing at the Endeavour River, is historically significant as an early monument  commemorating the landing site. Cooktown was the only place in Australia other than Botany Bay where Cook`s party came ashore for any length of time during the momentous 1770 voyage. 

It comprises a tall, slender sandstone column, topped with a detailed capital, which rises from a square pedestal resting upon a granite base and plinth. The steps of the plinth lead to a square dado incorporating drinking fountains on each side. Being in a prominent location near the original site of Cook`s landing, the monument has landscape significance.

These fountains were once linked to a regular water supply [possibly an internal tank], and the water outlets emerge from the mouths of sculpted animal heads. The dado is set beneath a modest entablature and the pediment is flanked by sandstone urns at each corner.

Captain James Cook claimed the whole of the east coast of Australia for Great Britain on 22 August 1770, naming eastern Australia, 'New South Wales.'

The ceremony of laying the foundation stone of the Captain Cook monument was performed on Thursday. The Mayor made a few appropriate remarks in memory of Captain Cook, and expressed regret at the absence of the Governor. His Worship then laid the foundation-stone, the Town Clerk having previously handed him a silver trowel and mallet, which were presented by the Council. 

The foundation-stone of the monument weighs one ton, and is of Cooktown granite. In the cavity underneath were placed two of the latest local papers, the names of the Mayor and aldermen and also of the members of the Divisional Board, to which was affixed the Corporation seal and coins of the realm.
Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald and General Advertiser (Qld),
3 September 1887.



Address:Charlotte Street, Cooktown, 4895
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -15.463566
Long: 145.249892
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:People
Actual Event Start Date:17-June-1770
Actual Event End Date:17-June-1770
Designer:Colonial Architects Office
Monument Manufacturer:Hobbs & Carter, (South Brisbane, QLD)


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:January-1888
Front Inscription

In Memoriam

Captain Cook who landed here

June 17. 1770.

Post Cineres Gloria Venit.

Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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