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Vessel Number: HV000637
Date: 1963
Vessel Dimensions: 18.79 m x 0.65 m (61.66 ft x 2.13 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
POTESTAS Is a rowing shell built in Queensland in 1963. It is an eight and was built by ‘Siggy’ Tantner for the Brisbane State High School. It is an example of the wooden construction of these craft in the final period beofre fibreglass composite construction was introduced. It was used by the school as their racing shell until 1970 and was always placed 2nd or 3rd in the annual Head of the River schools event.

DescriptionTantner built the eight in a space he was allocated for boat building at the Commercial Rowing Club’s boat shed on the Brisbane River in the early 1950s. The timber hull is made of laminated veneers over timber frames, with aluminium riggers.

The eight was christened POTESTAS by Mrs RG Morton , with the name coming from the Brisbane State High School’s motto ‘Scientia Est Protestas’ - Knowledge is Power. In its first year it was unbeaten in the lead up events to the annual Head of the River race between the principal schools on the Brisbane region. However in that race it was beaten by the Anglican Church Grammar School ‘Churchie’ by just two feet.

It raced in subsequent Head of the Rivers until 1970, however it missed the race in 1968 when it was under repair after damage in a shed fire. It was always placed 2nd or 3rd in this event, a consistent result. After being retired from racing and superseded by a more modern construction eight it was used by the school as a training boat before being gifted to the Queensland Maritime Museum in 1990.

Tantner’s background is being researched, and it appears he built a number of shells for Queensland rowing clubs and schools and was one of the primary local builders of these specialised craft. In 2014 POTESTAS is on display on the wall of the museum’s small craft shed adjacent to the dry dock.
Vessel Details
Current status:inside building
Current status:on public display
Deck layout:open
Hand propulsion/steering mechanism:oar
Hull material and construction:cold mouldedcold-mouldeddouble diagonaltriple diagonaldouble-diagonaltriple-diagonal
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:spade rudder
Deck material and construction:other

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