Historical information

This is a reproduction of the original 1897 Captains' petition to build a Central Institute on the Yarra river.

"To the Executive Committee of the Victorian Seamen's Mission, Melbourne.

"Ladies and Gentleman,

"We, the undersigned captains of several ships now lying at the Melbourne wharves think it most desirable that the Victorian Seamen's Mission, being the mission that has for so many years shown a most part their interest in the spiritual, moral, and social well-being of the seamen of all nationalities, shall him on the banks of the Yarra an institute such as that at Port Melbourne, where sailors of every grade could profitably and pleasantly spend their evenings.
At almost every other seaport in the world such institutions are being provided for seamen, and we are satisfied from our opinion of the Melbourne public that the matter needs only to be prominently brought under their notice to be accomplished.
We are confident that the good work of the mission is being hampered by its not having such a place near the shipping at the Melbourne wharves.
Our crews are at present placed at a great dis advantage through not having an institute more convenient to the scene of their labours than that at Port Melbourne, which, on a very wet or a very hot, is not easily reached.
If a site could be obtained immediately above the Gasworks but on the other side of Flinders street extension, that is to say, on the lower part of the land on which the Harbour Trust offices are built, it would be most convenient for the shipping on both the north and south side of the river.

Trusting that it may be possible to do some thing to meet this long felt want,

We suscribe ourselves,

Yours respectfully,

Geo.H Steven, master ship Dharwar;
Thos. Curd, master ship Narcissus;
James Horne, master ship Loch Garry;
T.Tait, master ship Loch Ryan;
T. Nilsen, master ship Hebe;
G. Ch Christian, master ship Anna;
R.E. Peasley, master ship Seminole;
Wm. Martin, master ship Loch Ness;
T.C. Martin, master ship Loch Tay;
W.H. Bennett, master ship Loch Vennachar;
J. Raglan Brodie, master s.s. Warrnambool;
James E. Coles, master ship Mermerus;
J. H. Walker, master ship Hinemoa;
R.J. Johns, master ship Ariel;
D. Gorchem (sic. Gerckens), master ship Matador;
H. Petersen, master ship Nesaia;
Wm. J. Reid, master s.s. Star of New Zealand;
A. F. Svhanstrom, master ship Hermes;
Alex. Smith, master ship Sophocles;
W. Y. Bunn, master ship Carmanian;
William Anderson, master ship Loch Katrine."

Physical description

Framed and mounted reproduction of Captains' petition