Built by Joseph Dent in 1911 just a few hundred metres from the Jervis Bay Maritime Museum the Lady Denman carried passengers on Sydney Harbour for 67 years. Upon her retirement in 1979 an intrepid band of volunteers inspired by local identity, Dick Young and local Member of Parliament, John Hatton embarked on the seemingly impossible task of returning the old ferry to her birthplace.
The story of this iconic Walter Reeks-designed vessel, from 1911 to her final installation in the museum in 2000 is told through displays on board the ferry. Restoration to her mid-1960s appearance is an ongoing project.
The Lady Denman is listed on the New South Wales State Heritage Register and the National Register of Heritage Vessels.
The Crest is a fishing launch built in 1911 by Frederick Dent at Currambene Creek and is a fine example of one of the vessels built at the Dent shipyard. She was built for Danish-born fisherman John (Jack) Rossen and was originally called Ninon after his wife. Jack operated the vessel until his death in 1957. It was renamed Crest by her second owner Len Wright, who donated her to the Museum in 1987.
In 2012 following a survey by staff from the Australian National Maritime Museum, a restoration management plan was developed. A team of volunteers is currently undertaking the restoration of the Crest under professional supervision.
To read more about the ongoing Crest Restoration Project, please link on the following link to our blog
The vessel has excellent provenance and a continuous association with Jervis Bay, from details of its construction and the men who built her through to its working history and details on all its owners including until recently, John Settree, grandson of the builder.
Kingfisher can be considered a transitional vessel as it contains elements in its construction of pre and post war design. Kingfisher is considered a good example of her type by contemporary shipwrights due to its fine entry and wake characteristics.
Kingfisher was recently included on the Australian Register of Historic Vessels managed by the Australian National Maritime Museum.
Originally named Antoinette this fishing boat was built for Rocco Musumici by Alfred Raymond (Alf) Settree in 1952. The story behind this vessel brings together two dominant themes of Jervis Bay history; boat building and fishing.
Wood Frame Construction
This partly-built trawler was brought from Batemans Bay by Alf Settree in 1996 as an example of the underlying structure of a planked wood-frame vessel.
The Alf Settree Boatshed
Alf Settree AO (1914-1998) was a master ship builder. His father AWM Settree bought the Dent shipyard in 1932, where the Lady Denman and the Ninon (Crest) has been built in 1911. Alf was a guiding force in the early days of the Museum and supervised the construction of this boatshed.