Tasmanian Seafarers' Memorial

FIS Endeavour (1914)

The plaque reads ...

FIS EndeavourF.I.S. Endeavour
3.12.1914 left Macquarie Is. for Hobart.
Violent gale 5.12.1914, presumed lost
with all 21 scientists and crew on board.
Harald Dannevig - Director of Fisheries
Charles Turnbull Harrisson - Biologist
George W.G. Pim - Master
J.Burkitt - Mate and 17 others.
First Federal Fisheries Research Vessel.


The Australian Government decided to send its science research ship, S.Y. Endeavour, to Macquarie Island at the end of 1914. The reasons for this visit were to take meteorologist, A. C. Tulloch to relieve Power and to conduct research into fisheries. The Endeavour also took sheep to Macquarie Island for the breeding experiment. The Director of Australian Fisheries, Harald. Dannevig, was on board for this trip, as was biologist, Charles Harrisson, who had recently returned from the Australasian Antarctic Expedition.

The Endeavour left Hobart on 25 November 1914 in weather so poor that veteran Antarctic voyager, Harrisson, described the weather as the worst he had experienced. Visibility was so poor that the Captain was lucky to see Macquarie Island in time to avoid being caught in the breakers. The Endeavour steamed up Macquarie Island’s east coast and anchored in North-east Bay near on Wireless Hill. Power duly handed over the weather station to Tulloch and went aboard the Endeavour. Dannevig was interested in the fish species around Macquarie Island and put out a trawl net from the Endeavour. He obtained a splendid collection of fish, many of which the biologist, Harrisson had never seen before. Dannevig also searched the reefs for crayfish but was not successful, although he caught a few crabs in the nets.Research vessel Endeavour

The Endeavour left Macquarie Island on 3 December 1914 in a heavy sea fog and was never seen again. She had twenty-three men on board.

At first the authorities held no grave fears for the Endeavour. Although she was powered by steam, she also had sails that could be used if her engine failed.

The search for the Endeavour began on 17 December 1914, when the Werribee was despatched from Melbourne. Weather records showed that the yacht would have met heavy weather approximately 200 miles from Macquarie Island, but a thorough search showed of seas in that area showed no trace of the Endeavour.

Source: The Shipwreck Watch Vol. 12 'The Endeavour'