Port Adelaide Historical Society Incorporated.
Preserving the Past for the Future.
14 Semaphore Road, Semaphore, South Australia 5019
Austbuilt Maritime Museum
95 Fletcher Road, Peterhead, South Australia 5015
A voluntary non-profit group operating with Council approval, housed in the area above the Semaphore Library, who have been collecting and preserving material pertaining to the Port Adelaide and districts area for forty years since their inception in 1972.
A quarterly magazine, Portonian, has been published continually in that period and has become a valuable source for historians and researchers. The PAHS also maintains the Austbuilt Maritime Museum, a treasure trove of artefacts and memorabilia of Australian shipping, the Portonian Walk in the present Port Adelaide Pioneer Park on the site of the original Alberton Cemetery, a publishing arm Hourglass Books as well as offering an annual award for publication of historical material pertaining to Port Adelaide named after a founding member Mavis Hoey.
The present Semaphore Collection consists of framed pictures, photographs, maps, books, artefacts and printed ephemera covering periods back to the 19th century. A collection of DVD's and some film and audio tape are also part of the collection that has been indexed and computerised are also available in the Semaphore rooms during the opening hours of 1.30 to 3.30 p.m. each Friday afternoon for genuine research and identification of historic material. Membership of the Society is available on application to mail.porthistory.net. Access is free to all members and for donations from visitors.
South Australia's first port was declared as Port Adelaide in 1837 and the ensuing 175 years have seen changes in position and fluctuating fortunes. Many volumes have been filled with fact and detail that has been gathered by the PAHS and is able to assist and answer many simple queries. A group of our members possess more detailed knowledge of the district and can offer more precise information for a fee needed for the deeper research. It is helpful to advise of any information already in the questioner's possession to avoid duplication in the research process.
TO CONTACT US:
Port Adelaide Historical Society, P.O. Box 254, Port Adelaide,South Aust. 5015
Austbuilt Maritime Museum, 95 Fletcher Road, Peterhead
OUR LATEST ACQUISITION
The Torpedo Station was established on the south bank of the entrance to the North Arm at the time of the Russian scare of the 1880s which caused the construction of two forts at Largs Bay and Glanville and the purchase of the Colonial gunship "Protector". A proposed third fort at Glenelg was never completed. The Torpedo Station was closed in 1916. This gun was found in the mud on the bank of the river and recovered by the Port Adelaide Council in 1961. It was relocated to the Birkenhead Naval Reserve in 1961 and with the closure of the navy establishment "HMAS Encounter"in 1994 it was removed to the Tracy Street Council Depot. Ownership was transferred to the Port Adelaide Sub-Sectionof the Naval Association of Australia in 1996 and the gun was re-sited to Cruickshanks Corner, Birkenhead. At a meeting of the Naval Association in 2007 the ownership of the gun was transferred to the Port Adelaide Historical Society and in 2012 their volunteers arranged for the removal and installation of the gun to the grounds of the Austbuilt Maritime Museum.
Your interests can often be aroused by the displays and objects that are held in Museums around the world, but unlike those big city organisations where the stories are on a "look but don't touch" basis, the hundreds of small groups like the Austbuilt Museum and the PAHS offer real contact with our past. So come along and visit, tell your story or ask us your questions and you can become an important part of PRESERVING THE PAST FOR THE FUTURE.
This is the latest addition to the Austbuilt Maritme Museum. The six inch naval gun rescued from the site of the North Arm Torpedo Station which was established in 1885. Our volunteers went to considerable trouble to create a reinforced concrete base and organise cranes and transport to position this heavy artefact of the past.
This map of the inner harbor and city area of Port Adelaide is taken from "Walk Round Corners" by John Couper-Smartt who also wrote the large history "Port Adelaide, A Commodious Harbour" and is a member of the PAHS.
It shows most of the historically noted sites on the eastern side of the Port Adelaide river where the town was founded in 1840