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Friends of the Cerberus Inc Williamstown, Victoria

Friends of Cerberus is a not for profit community group campaigning to save the Victorian monitor class warship, HMVS Cerberus.

Friends of the Cerberus not only collects items relevant to HMVS Cerberus but also items relevant to the other vessels of the Victorian Navy as well as the men that served in the Victorian Navy and Victorian Naval Brigade.

Most of our collection is displayed in the Seaworks Maritime Museum in Nelson Place, Williamstown, Victoria, Australia.

Contact Information

location
3 Mulholland Drive Tarneir Victoria 3029 (map)
phone
+61 0403 070601

Contact

Opening Hours

The collection can be seen at the Maritime Museum on Friday, Sunday and Wednesday 11am-3pm.

Entry Fee

Gold coin donation

Location

Seaworks Maritime Museum 82 Nelson Place Williamstown Victoria

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The collection comprises an external replica of a Cerberus gun turret, the 200+ year old wheel from HMVS (ex HMS) Nelson, a 32 pounder cannon and numerous Victorian Navy relics and interpretive material.

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24 items

14 pounder Common Shell

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Cylindrical steel projectile with conical nose.

Historical information

This fixed round was unique in that it could only be fired from two guns produced by Maxim-Nordenfelt as prototype guns. Subsequent guns were loaded with a separate projectile and shell casing. The 14 pounder Quich Firing (QF) guns were acquired for use on the armed commercial steamer SS Courier. While not in use they were used at Fort Queenscliff before being returned to the Victorian Navy. The guns were then fitted to HMVS Nelson and then HMVS Cerberus in 1897. In 1900 they were fitted to field gun carriages and accompanied the Victorian Naval Contingent to China.

Inscriptions & Markings

None

Bullion

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Nordenfelt 1 inch Shell Casing

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Mk I Common Shell

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Cylindrical Iron shell with pointed nose.

Historical information

As iron was not as strong as steel, iron shells were shorter and did not hold as much gunpowder as steel shells.

Significance

This Mk I iron common shell is the only know Mk I shell from the armoury of HMVS Cerberus.

Inscriptions & Markings

Base - "[1]0 IN/RL/8" On side - "6/85" "I/R^L"

Photo of Men and 2 Torpedoes

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Photograph depicting Peter Ratley aka Peter Searle and his Victorian Navy colleagues standing in front of a tall building with two torpedoes on a trolly in front of them.

Historical information

Photograph depicting Peter Ratley aka Peter Searle and his Victorian Navy colleagues standing in front of a tall building with two torpedoes on a trolly in front of them.

Inscriptions & Markings

X over Peter Ratley aka Peter Searle

Victorian Fleet Painting - 1872

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Original oil painting by George Frederick Gregory.

Historical information

The painting depicts HMVS Cerberus, HMVS Nelson and one of the P&O Mail Steamers.

Significance

Of great significance as the colour scheme of Cerberus and Nelson is shown.

Inscriptions & Markings

G F Gregory 72

Sea-Cell Pamphlet - On the Sea-Cell as a Possible Source of Danger in Torpedo Experiments.

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Eleven page pamphlet measuring 137 mm x 215 mm exploring the possibility that the Cerberus torpedo accident was caused by a Sea-Cell effect.

Historical information

The Sea-Cell pamphlet was written by Captain Henry Moors of the Land Forces Signal & Torpedo Corps. In the pamphlet Captain Moors investigates the theory that the zinc case of the torpedo, the iron hull of Cerberus and the sea water combined to form a sea-cell. (battery) Captain Moors investigates whether this sea-cell could have resulted in a current being produced that was strong enough to detonate the torpedo.

6 pounder Shell casing

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Cylindrical brass tube closed at base and open at other end.

Historical information

Nordenfelt Six pounder quick firing guns were used by land and naval forces to counter torpedo boats.

Significance

The projectile and its shell casing are of the type and age used by the Victorian Naval Forces but could equally have been used by the land forces.

Victorian Fleet Print - 1888 - Detail of painting - The Victorian Fleet

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Historical information

Represents the Victorian Navy in 1888. Reproduction of original painting by Arthur Victor Gregory.

Significance

Reproduction of the original held by the Royal Historical Society of Victoria.

14 pounder Shell casing

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Cylindrical shell casing made of brass.

Historical information

A 14 pounder shell casing manufactured for the two prototype guns used by the Victorian Navy. Unlike the later Mk I and M II 14 pounders which used separate components the ammunition for the prototype guns was assembled into one fixed piece and crimped together.

Significance

Only a handfull of these sheels are known to exist as later 14 pounder guns used separate shell casing and projectiles.

Inscriptions & Markings

On base - "N"

Epaulettes Box

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Metal box with handle and broken catch designed to hold two shoulder epaulettes.

Inscriptions & Markings

Engraving on lid - "A.M.T."

6 pounder Common Shell

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Cylindrical steel shell with cone shaped nose.

Historical information

Nordenfelt Six pounder quick firing guns were used by land and naval forces to counter torpedo boats.

Significance

The projectile and its shell casing are of the type and age used by the Victorian Naval Forces but could equally have been used by the land forces.

Inscriptions & Markings

On side - "H/88"

Epaulette

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Epaulette with gold braid and anchor insignia.

Inscriptions & Markings

Underside - "W.CHORLEY/OUTFITTER/SYDNEY,/N.S.W.

Soup Tureen

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Silver plated soup tureen measuring 390 mm wide, 250 mm deep and 220 mm high.

Inscriptions & Markings

Presented to J. A. Thompson as a mark of esteem from C. T. Mandeville K. L. Murray O. Richards J. Breaks J. D. Dayle J. Tubb W. A. Holmes A. Mahler R. M. Collins E. J. Huseyman R. Malcolmson J. Frogley A. Harrow J. Nelson T. J. Beatty H. Schreiber A. M. Houston H.M.V.S. Cerberus Nov. 16th 1881.

Nordenfelt 1 inch Projectile

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Historical information

One inch Nordenfelt machine guns were used on board vessels of the Victorian Navy to combat the torpedo boats. One inch, as opposed to the .45 inch, Nordenfelt guns used by the Land Forces could penetrate the boilers of torpedo boats and thereby stop them.

Inscriptions & Markings

none

Victorian Flag - 1870

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

A replica 1870 Victorian flag made of polyester.

Mk III Palliser Shot

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Cylindrical steel projectile with pointed nose.

Historical information

Mk III palliser shot was intended to be fired from the main guns of HMVS Cerberus.

Significance

Only know shot from HMVS Cerberus.

Inscriptions & Markings

None.

Gatling Gun round

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Mk III Common Shell

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Historical information

Mk III steel shell.

Significance

Only known Mk III shell used by HMVS Cerberus.

Inscriptions & Markings

On side - "5/98" "^/AH" Near nose - 716/T

Mk II Common Shell

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

10 inch, Mk II, Steel Common Shell

Inscriptions & Markings

On side - "21/D 7 C/96" On Base - "[1]0 IN II/[C] s/R.L.

Epaulette

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Epaulette with gold.

Discharge Certificate

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Piece of paper with fields to fill in.

Historical information

A blank Victorian Naval Forces Discharge Certificate used when a member of the Victorian Naval Forces left.

Significance

Only known copy of a blank certificate with the stub that was retained by the Navy.

Victorian flag - 1877

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Replica of an 1877 Victorian flag made of polyester.

Significance

This item is a reproduction.

Whitehead Torpedo Manual - Victorian Naval Forces Torpedo Manual Whitehead Torpedoes 1889

Friends of the Cerberus Inc, Williamstown

Victorian Naval Forces Manual printed in 1889 with 62 pages with a burgandy cover. Two sections:- Part 1 - Whitehead Torpedos and their component parts used in the Victorian Naval Forces. Part 2 - Electrical section describing firing circuits, cells, fuzes, dynamoes, search lights.

Historical information

The Torpedo Manual was created in 1889 presumably as part of the training program of the Victorian Naval Torpedo Corps.

Significance

This item is significant partly because some of the information in the manual is not found elsewhere but also as it the only known copy of this manual. The manual is also evidence that a more professional approach to training was undertaken by the Victorian Naval Forces after the mid 1880s. Gunner/Instructor Corkle's of the Port Melboune Naval Brigade written in the manual is evidence of the manual's strong provenance.

Inscriptions & Markings

Inside front cover - "Jno. Co[orkle] /Gunner & Instructor/oPort Melbourne Division/of/Naval Brigade/Port Melbourne/ January 1890." Inside back cover - "J Corkle GI/P.M.B. of N.B./January 1890"