Home > The Cooktown Re-enactments

The Cooktown Re-enactments


On the 16th of June 1770, the Endeavour entered the mouth of the Endeavour River, shortly after being holed on the Great Barrier Reef. The ship was beached whilst repairs were effected, a task completed by the 6th of July. Unfavourable weather prevented departure, and Cook and his party remained there until the 4th of August.

This area is now the site of Cooktown, Australia, and each year, the Cooktown Re-enactment Committee commemorates Cook's landing and lengthy stay by restating the landing. The re-enactment involves about thirty local people costumed as Cook, Hicks, Banks, Solander, Monkhouse and various other crew. The party lands in two whaleboats, the first containing marines, and the second the remainder of the party.

The ceremony has taken place annually since 1960, including a special performance in 1970 for Queen Elizabeth during the Cook Bicentennial celebrations.

The ceremony takes place on a long weekend in early June, and other events that take place during the weekend include a parade, re-enactment ball, fishing and tug-of-war competitions and the National Tiss Tott Championships (a novelty beer drinking competition).

Since 1979, the Committee has produced covers to mark the event, using the Cooktown cancel. These covers are sold to raise funds which are used to purchase muskets and other items for use in the ceremony.

Michael Blinman and David Seymour
From information supplied by Loretta Sullivan (President of the Queensland Committee).

Originally published in Cook's Log, page 287, volume 7, number 3 (1984).

Sort by:
profile photo
What does Cook actually record in his log on page 287 volume 7
By ken.osborne220@gmail.com on 2/25/2023 3:48:43 AM Like:0 DisLike:0
profile photo
What does the reenactment consist of
By ken.osborne220@gmail.com on 2/25/2023 3:45:03 AM Like:0 DisLike:0
profile photo
Loretta, many thanks for posting the information about this year's re-enactments.
I hope that the weather is kind to Cooktown for these events.
By Cliff Thornton on 3/13/2019 8:43:10 PM Like:0 DisLike:0
profile photo
The Re-enactment of the landing if Captain Cook and his six meetings with the Guugu Yimithirr First Australians will take place on Wednesday 17th June 2020, 250 years after the first landing at the Endeavour River in 1770.
A second Reenactment will take place on 19th July 2020 to commemorate the first recorded act of reconciliation in Australia’s history.
It is planned to have a third Reenactment on August 4th or 5th 2020 to commemorate the departure of Cook and his crew from the Endeavour River in 1770. TBC.
Go to the Cooktown 2020 web page for more information.
By Loretta Sullivan on 3/13/2019 3:10:26 PM Like:0 DisLike:0
profile photo
Could you please advise the date of the Captain Cook landing celebrations for 2020, we would like to
make our motel bookings early as we know that the PARTY is to be held over 6 weeks but we only
want to be up there for the actual landing re enactment . thank you .
By rae king on 4/30/2018 12:56:07 AM Like:0 DisLike:0

Unsolicited e-mail warning

It has come to our attention that spam mailers (senders of bulk unsolicited e-mail) have been forging their mail with this domain as the point of origin. As a matter of policy, we do not send out e-mail from our domain name. If you have received an email that appears to be from "@CaptainCookSociety.com" it was forged and sent without our consent, knowledge, or the use of our servers.