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Stella Maris

Vessel Number: HV000726
Date: 1922
Builder: Ike Innes
Vessel Dimensions: 6 m × 1.8 m (19.69 ft × 5.91 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
STELLA MARIS is a wooden fishing boat built on the south coast of NSW around 1922. It was built by Bega sawmiller Ike Innes. STELLA MARIS has had a long and close association with Tathra during its lifetime, including taking patrons of the Tathra Hotel on fishing trips. It is now on display at the Pig and Whistle Line Museum which is located on the historic Tathra Wharf, built in 1862 and restored during 1970 to 1988 by the National Trust and Public Works Department. STELLA MARIS is in original condition.
DescriptionThe 6 m long clinker construction hull is a built as an open boat with a small foredeck and side decking. A coaming runs around the perimeter of the cockpit, and it has three thwarts. The motor is located at amidships and it is steered with a tiller.

The original owner is not known, but a later owner was Peter Rollason. The best documentation comes from its period with the Tathra Hotel, situated a few hundred metres uphill from the wharf, with a panoramic view out over the headland to the Tasman Sea. On the south western side of the headland is the bay called Kianinny where its limited shelter allowed boats to be launched, retrieved and stored. STELLA MARIS was kept there during the 1960s and used by the hotel as a launch and fishing boat for the hotel patrons. The story goes that ‘many a bottle of rum was consumed on the trips”.

In 1972 a storm wrecked many of the boats onshore at Kianinny but although damaged, STELLA MARIS survived, however it was no longer used. It was still recognised widely as one of the local boats and one of the last surviving fishing boats from the town, and it was decided to put it on display at the Tathra Wharf Museum. In 1992 a team of locals refloated STELLA MARIS. It was still in its cradle, and supported by 44 gallon drums the boat and cradle were moved around the headland to the NE side where the wharf is located. The big crane on the wharf lifted the boat and its launching cradle from the water and it was moved into the museum space intact and well supported.

It remains there with original paintwork, engine and fishing gear, a rare example of a fishing boat from the 1920s that has served its region for many decades. The museum has now become known as the Pig and Whistle Line Museum.

Vessel Details
Current status:inside building
Current status:non-operational
Current status:on public display
Deck layout:decked with cockpit
Deck material and construction:timber planked
Hand propulsion/steering mechanism:tiller
Hull material and construction:clinkerglued lapstrakelapstrake
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:displacement
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:plumb stemvertical stem
Hull shape:plumb transomvertical transom
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:launch deadwood
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:transom rudder
Motor propulsion:inboard
Motor propulsion:motor vesselMV
Motor propulsion:petrol

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