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Ruby Charlotte

Vessel Number: HV000158
Date: 1957
Vessel type: Pearling Luggers
Vessel Dimensions: 20.73 m x 4.42 m x 1.98 m, 34.45 tonnes (68 ft x 14.5 ft x 6.5 ft, 35 tons)
Registered Dimensions: 15.6 m x 4.39 m x 1.98 m, 25.39 tons (51.2 ft x 14.4 ft x 6.5 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
RUBY CHARLOTTE is one of the last of the Thursday Island type of pearling luggers. It was built in Queensland in the 1950s.
DescriptionRUBY CHARLOTTE was built in 1957 by Watts and Wright at Bulimba in Brisbane, Queensland. They may have designed it themselves; otherwise it could have been drawn by Ron Wright (a cousin). It was called NADINE when launched, and the owner was H.O. and R.N. Hockings Pty Ltd from Thursday Island. Reg Hockings was one of the founding operators in the Thursday Island pearling industry in the early 1900s, working closely with James Clark.

The hull was strongly built with oregan planking on spotted gum frames and remains in excellent condition, with the original layout and rig configuration.

Under the name NADINE it worked out of Thursday Island until 1974, when it was sold to Badu Island. There it continued pearling and beche-de-mer collecting, as well as taking on general cargo work amongst the islands in the area. Badu Island's chief Joey Nona renamed the craft RUBY CHARLOTTE after his daughters Ruby and Charlotte who were Torresian princesses.

In 1984 Badu Island sold the vessel and it went into private ownership. Plans were made to have it restored and become a feature at the Cairns Maritime Museum but this did not eventuate. Instead the current owners bought RUBY CHARLOTTE in 1991 to use as a cargo vessel to service Middle Percy Island on the Great Barrier Reef near Mackay Queensland. It was an excellent vessel for this task, carrying diverse items such as bricks, grain, goats and even a Landrover four wheel drive vehicle. It also did some salvage work and was the ferry for some of the guests and visitors to and from the island.

In 2007 RUBY CHARLOTTE is a private vessel and home for its owners, no longer doing cargo work, but still sailing and motoring along the Queensland coast where it is very well known amongst the locals.
Vessel Details
Cabin or superstructure material and construction:timber planked
Current status:operational
Deck layout:cabin
Deck layout:full decked
Deck material and construction:timber planked
Hull material and construction:carvelcarvel-planked
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:displacement
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:overhanging transom
Hull shape:plumb stemvertical stem
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:full keel
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:keel hung rudder
Motor propulsion:auxiliary motor
Motor propulsion:diesel
Motor propulsion:inboard
Related materials:film
Related materials:news clippings
Related materials:photos
Related materials:references
Rig type:gaff
Rig type:ketch
Sail cloth:synthetic
Spar material:timber
Hand propulsion/steering mechanism:wheel
Additional Titles

Primary title: Ruby Charlotte

Previous title: Nadine

Alternate Numbers

Vessel Registration Number: OB529Q

Official Number: 196370

Sail Number: A65

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