Fishburn (1780 ship)

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Great Britain
Name: Fishburn
Owner: Leighton Co.
Launched: 1780, Whitby
General characteristics
Tons burthen: 378, or 400[1] (bm)
Length: 103 ft (31 m)
Beam: 29 ft (8.8 m)
Sail plan: Ship rig
Complement: 22

Fishburn was the largest of the three First Fleet storeships. She was built at Whitby in 1780, and was of 378 tons. According to her 1786 Deptford survey, she was 6 feet 1 inch (1.85 m) between decks afore, 5 feet 9 inches (1.75 m) midships and 7 feet 1 inch (2.16 m) abaft.

Her master for the voyage to Botany Bay was Robert Brown, and she was owned by Leighton Co., who were also the owners of Golden Grove and Borrowdale.[2][3] Fishburn carried 22 crew, though five deserted before the vessel departed England. The shortfall was made up through forced transfers from HMS Hyaena, the Royal Navy escort ship that accompanied the Fleet for the first three hundred miles of its voyage.[4]

Fishburn left Portsmouth on 13 May 1787, and arrived at Port Jackson on 26 January 1788. She left Port Jackson on 19 November 1788, keeping company with Golden Grove until losing sight of her on 11 April 1789 after several days at the Falkland Islands for recovery of crew members who were sick with scurvy. She arrived back in England on 25 May 1789. The fate of Fishburn is unknown; she appears to have disappeared from the records after being discharged from Her Majesty's service at Deptford, nine days after her arrival.[2]

An engraving of the First Fleet in Botany Bay at voyage's end in 1788, from The Voyage of Governor Phillip to Botany Bay.[5]

There is a monument to Fishburn in the First Fleet Memorial Gardens at Wallabadah, New South Wales. An Urban Transit Authority First Fleet ferry was named after Fishburn in 1985.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lloyd's Register (1786), Seq. №F107.
  2. ^ a b "Fishburn". First Fleet Fellowship. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 
  3. ^ "The Ships of the First Fleet". Fellowship First Fleeters. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 
  4. ^ Mundle, Rob (2014). The First Fleet. Harper Collins. p. 82. ISBN 9780733332364. 
  5. ^ The Voyage of Governor Phillip to Botany Bay (1789)
  6. ^ Sydney Ferries Fleet Facts Archived April 12, 2015, at the Wayback Machine. Transport for NSW

Further reading[edit]

  • Bateson, Charles, The Convict Ships, 1787–1868, Sydney, 1974.

External links[edit]