SS Bonnie Dundee (1877)

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Name: Bonnie Dundee
Owner: George & Bruce Nicoll
Port of registry: Sydney
Builder: Gourlay Brothers and Company, Dundee
Launched: 2 March 1877[1]
Fate: Sunk as a result of collision on 10 March 1879, with the loss of 5 lives
General characteristics
Displacement: 193/121 gross tons
Length: 130.3 feet (39.7 m)
Beam: 19 feet (6 m)
Draft: 9.9 feet (3.0 m)
Propulsion: 40 hp twin cylinder compound steam engine with single coal burning boiler

SS Bonnie Dundee was a 193/121 gross ton Australian steamship which was sunk after a collision with the SS Barrabool off Lake Macquarie, New South Wales, on 10 March 1879.


She was built by Gourlay Brothers and Company, Dundee, Scotland for George and Bruce Nicoll, Sydney, Australia and intended for trade from the Richmond River, New South Wales and launched on 2 March 1877.[2] She was sailed from Dundee on 28 March 1877, travelling via the Suez Canal and stopped in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and arrived in Cooktown on Wednesday 27 June 1877. She put into the Clarence River in mid July 1877 and arrived in Sydney on 18 July 1877.

While under charter, SS Bonnie Dundee, captained by John Alexander Stuart, was run into by SS Barrabool, captained by John Readman Clark at about 8pm on Monday 10 March 1879, she was cut in two and sank within a few minutes. Five of her passengers did not survive the sinking. The Barrabool suffered a gash in her port bow above the water line.[3] Her wreck is located in 35 metres (115 ft) of water about 5 kilometres (3 mi) off Caves Beach, south east of Moon Island, approximately at 33°06.327′S 151°42.258′E / 33.105450°S 151.704300°E / -33.105450; 151.704300Coordinates: 33°06.327′S 151°42.258′E / 33.105450°S 151.704300°E / -33.105450; 151.704300.


  1. ^ "Launch". Dundee Courier. Dundee. 3 March 1877. Retrieved 21 November 2015 – via British Newspaper Archive. (subscription required (help)). 
  2. ^ "The Sydney Morning Herald, Friday 27 April 1877, p.4.". Retrieved 21 January 2011. 
  3. ^ "The South Australian Advertiser, Wednesday 12 March 1879, p.5.". Retrieved 21 January 2011.