Historical information

This metal sphere is part of the wooden barque, the Grange, built in 1840. The sphere was recovered from the shipwreck of the Grange in around 1968, 110 years after the Grange was wrecked (see below for further details on the Grange). It is part of the John Chance Collection.

THE GRANGE, 1840-1858-

The wooden barque ’Grange’ was a three-masted ship built in Scotland in 1840 for international and coastal trade.

On March 22, 1858, the Grange set sail from Melbourne under Captain A. Alexander, carrying a cargo of ballast. The barque had left the Heads of Phillip Bay and was heading west along the Victorian coast towards Cape Otway. The ship struck Little Haley’s Reef at Apollo Bay due to a navigational error and was stuck on the rocks. The crew left the ship carrying whatever they could onto the beach. Eventually, the remains of the hull, sails and fittings were salvaged before the wreck of the Grange broke up about a month later.

About 110 years later, in 1968, the wreck of the Grange was found by divers from the Underwater Explorers Club of Victoria. They were amazed to find a unique, six to nine pound carronade (type of small cannon) and a cannonball on the site. There have been no other similar carronades recorded. In that same year the anchor of the Grange was recovered by diver John Chance and Mal Brown.


The sphere is significant historically as an example of hardware used when building wooden ships in the early to mid-19th century.
The sphere is historically significant as an example of the work and trade of blacksmith.
The sphere also has significant as it was recovered by John Chance, a diver from the wreck of the Grange in the 1968. Items that come from several wrecks along Victoria's coast have since been donated to the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village’s museum collection by his family, illustrating this item’s level of historical value.
The sphere is historically significant for its association with the 1840s wooden barque, the Grange.
The Grange is an historical example of a Scottish built vessel used for international and coastal trader of both cargo and passengers in the mid-19th century.
The Grange is an example of an early ship, designed with a wooden hull. It is significant as a ship still available to divers along the south coast of Victoria, for research and education purposes.
The Grange is an example of a mid-19th century vessel that carried a weapon of defence onboard.

Physical description

Sphere; thin hollow copper, various shades of brown, dimpled or hammered surface with a sheen, no joins. Base has a small hole and is fitted with a hollow, cylindrical brass collar. The collar had a rim on top, inward curving sides and a narrower rim on the bottom. The sphere looks similar to a bed post knob.