Historical information

This Certificate, Load-Line, gave approval for the vessel Reginald M to load cargo up to a certain line, marked by a disc attached to the ship and inspected by the South Australian Harbors Board. The vessel had a long and varied life of service. This Certificate relates to early 1970, before the ship was sold to the Lyall Mining and Rail Company.

The Load Line on the Reginald M was carved on the ship, inside the hull and not removeable.


The vessel “Reginald M” was a two-masted coastal ketch, owned and built by Mr. Jack (John) Murch of Birkenhead, Port of Adelaide, South Australia. Its construction took approximately 6 months and it was launched at Largs Bay in 1922.

The Reginald M’s purpose was to serve the coastal trade of South Australia, to carry cargo cheaply and efficiently. It is believed that the keel was in fact hewn from two telegraph poles! Its builder frequented all the salvage yards for materials and fittings.

Reginald M had a very shallow draft and a flat bottom that enabled it to come close to shore and to sit high and dry at low tide or to be beached on sand. The flat bottom was also to make the ship able to skim over reefs. Wagons could load and unload direct from her side. Her cargo included Guano, Barley, Wool, Horses, Cattle, Timber, Explosives, Potatoes, Shell Grit and Gypsum.

After a variety of services, in late 1970 Reginald M was sold to the Mt. Lyell Mining and Railway Company and was used by them as a barge to carry explosives. In 1972 the Navy League of Strahan, Tasmania, purchased her for use by the Strahan Sea Cadet Unit to use at Macquarie Harbour and renamed her T.S. Macquarie. However this plan for use of Reginald M did not come to pass. In 1974 Mr. Andrew Rennie, of East Brighton, Melbourne, bought her for a similar purpose. , paying $5,000 and donating a ‘Cadet of the Year” trophy to the Sea Cadets. He sailed her from Strahan to Melbourne, planning to use her for pleasure sailing. Also in 1975 Reginald M was sold to Melbourne Ferry Company at auction.

Later in 1975 the Reginald M was bought by Flagstaff Maritime Museum for $20,000 . She has been restored and is now one of the exhibits in the Village lagoon or lake. It was restored in 2006 using funds from a $4,000 government grant.


This Certificate is significant because of its association with the last working days of REGINALD M.
REGNIALD M was a coastal trading ketch from South Australia built in 1922. It was one of very few sailing coastal trading vessels still existing until 2016, and its flat bottom, single chine shape illustrated a very simple but robust method of construction, compared to other round bilged examples of trading vessels. The vessel is listed on the Australian Register of Historic Vessels (ARHV Number: HV000562.)

Physical description

Certificate, rectangular, behind glass in wooden frame. Certificate is an official printed form, some information is over-typed, other information is hand written and signed. Frame has a central hole in top and bottom. The Certificate relates to Load Level of the vessel Reginald M and refers to the exact placement of a disc within the vessel that indicates the maximum load in fresh water.
. Issued to the vessel 'Reginald M', Official Number 137228.
. Issued by the Sough Australian Harbors Board
. Valid from 25-02-1970 to 31-01-1974.
. Signed by Neil Cormack, 25th February 1970

Inscriptions & markings

Certificate of Approval - Load Line for sailing vessel Reginald M, Official Number 137228.
Logo of the South Australian Harbors Board.
Issued by Department of Marine & Harbors, Port Adelaide, 25th February 1970.
In force until 31st January 1974.
Signed by Neil William Cormack, authorised officer for Department of Marine & Harbors.
Typed onto form:
"AUX [SAILING SIP]" "REGINALD M" "137228" "1968" " Neil William Cormack" "Department of Marine & Harbors" "1 [foot] 3 [inches below the] main [deck]" "31st JANUARY 74" "25th FEBRUARY 70"
Signature: "Neil W Cormack"