PM Transcripts

Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 2156


Photo of Gorton, John

Gorton, John

Period of Service: 10/01/1968 to 10/03/1971

More information about Gorton, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 12/01/1970

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 2156

FOR PRESS: P. M. No. 4/ 1970
Statement by the Prime Minister, Mr. John Gorton
The Prime Minister, Mr. John Gorton, announced today
that one of the six cannon jettisoned by Captain Cook from the " Endeavour"
on the Great Barrier Reef in 1770 would be mounted and displayed in
the National Capital. Queensland and New South Wales, the States most
intimately associated with Captain Cook would each receive a cannon.
Mr. Gorton said that he had written to Dr. H. Radclyffe
Roberts, Director of the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences, the
organisation responsible for mounting the expedition and locating the
cannon, and had offered a cannon to them. Another was being presented
to the Governmeat and people of New Zealand as a goodwill gesture to
mark that country's bicentenary celebrations of Cook's circumnavigation
of New Zealand prior to discovering Australia. The sixth cannon would
be presented to Britain for display at the National Maritime Museum at
Greenwich. The Prime Minister said: " I would like to pay tribute to
the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences, in particular to Dr. Virgil
Kauffman and Brigadier-General Wolf for the magnificent research,
planning and effort which led to the discovery of these important relics..
It was a happy coincidence that they were recovered in time to permit
their restoration for Australia's bicentenary year.
The Prime Minister said that the cannon, which were
coral encrusted, had undergone considerable restoration in the Defence
Standards Laboratories of the Department of Supply under the care of
Dr. C. Pearson and his staff. Considerable study of the original
specifications had been made and it was proposed to construct wooden
mountings for the cannon which were identical with the original mountings.
CANBERRA 12 January 1970

Transcript 2156