A meeting of the Australian branch of the Captain Cook Society was held on Wednesday 17th August at the Discovery Centre at Kurnell.
Eight members attended: Daphne Salt (545) the organizer and host, Ted Tierney (335) the President of CCS-A, who had flown up from Melbourne for the meeting, John Faulkner (904), Malcolm Nicholson (1148), Tony Smyth (1147), Keith Paterson (383), Colin Rudd (807), and John Atkins (546). Eight guests came to the meeting including Malcolm Kerr the local MP and Klaas (Nick) Boes who has since become a member.
It was an informal meeting with everyone outlining their interests in Cook, which was quite diverse, ranging from history, Cook sites, stamps, memorabilia and the protection of Kurnell. A variety of interests you could expect from any group of CCS members. We also discovered three of the members present had sailed on the Endeavour Replica.
Following the introductions and the President's address a general discussion took place on Cook sources, such as the Mitchell Library with its wealth of Cook material, the Maritime Museum with their online collection and how they are working with the Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Research (RIMAR) on the search for the Endeavour at the entrance to Newport Harbour, and the Museum of Sydney's Cook Sites exhibition.
At the luncheon break the members enjoyed the refreshments kindly provided by the local MP Malcolm Kerr and two videos were shown: one of Kurnell and the other on Cook country, England.
On discussing future meetings and content, over three quarters voted for meetings to be held twice a year. The same number electing midweek luncheon meetings as their preferred option. The members unanimously voted for guest speakers, with Dr Edward Duyker the author of the book Nature's Argonaut - Daniel Solander, being a suggestion for a future meeting.
After the meeting a number of the members took part in an enjoyable guided tour of the monuments at Cook's Landing Place.
A meeting of the Australian branch of the Captain Cook Society was held on Thursday 25th August in Fitzroy Gardens near Cooks' Cottage, Melbourne.
There were twelve members present: Ted Tierney President (335), Ken Sheahan (290), Peter Morgan (965), Riemer Brouwer (304), Len Harrow (903), Jenny Elliston (744), Larry Osborne (1000), David Johns (11), Marion French (668), Milan Filipovic (252), Richard Dixon (418), Geoff Weeks (405).
We also had three guests: Evelyn Tierney, Viv. Elliston and Andrew Baker, who at the end of the meeting completed a membership application form.
During the President Ted's welcome and opening comments he thanked Past President Ken Sheahan for his contribution and congratulated both Ken and Riemer on receiving life membership of the CCS.
Each member then received a questionnaire designed to encourage their views and suggestions on future meetings. Once the questionnaires are returned the committee will evaluate the results at their next meeting in early November.
There was some discussion during Ted's opening comments. One remark from Ted and another member caught everybody's attention. Both know a descendant of John Harrison, of chronometer fame. As this, perhaps, represents an opportunity for a guest speaker, Ted intends following this up.
After Ted's segment everyone introduced themselves and gave an outline on their Cook interests, again wide ranging, including philately, books, navigation and cartography to name a few, with one surprise - one of the members is a descendant of William Wales and Charles Green and, perhaps not surprisingly, has an interest in the astronomers that sailed with Cook.
Ted ended the morning session by circulating from his philatelic collection, Australia 99 Navigator mini sheets with a perforation error. He also thanked Peter Morgan and Cook's Cottage for the use of the room and for supplying the refreshments.
During lunch the guest speaker Claire Jager, a producer from Arcimedia explained an adventure story she is working on, a story loosely based on Cook's first voyage that is aimed at 8 to 12 year olds with the production being released early next year.
After lunch each of the committee reported on some developments being undertaken.
The Secretary mentioned that at the next committee meeting there will be a discussion about putting a CCS-A web page on the CCS website, and a new membership application form is currently being developed.
The Treasurer reported on looking at additional payment options for subscriptions.
The Endeavour Lines Editor announced that Brian Sandford has agreed to produce a CD-ROM for past issues of Endeavour Lines. As the costs are yet to be confirmed, a decision on whether to proceed will be made once the costs are known.
Here are some other outcomes from the meeting. In due course the Endeavour Replica will be available for charter and Peter Morgan is considering approaching Melbourne City Council and perhaps the State Government with the suggestion that the Endeavour be brought to Melbourne at the time of the Commonwealth Games. No doubt, cost will be the governing factor.
A new member suggested that a history of the CCS and CCS-A be produced for the benefit of new members.
A request was also made about circulating membership lists but this has since been declined for privacy reasons.
Both meetings were enjoyed by all and it was an encouraging start. We are hopeful about attracting more members in the future, but to achieve this our CCS-A meetings must be interesting and we have taken the first steps to ensure this happens.
Originally published in Cook's Log, page 34, volume 28, number 4 (2005).
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