Edwin Fox Museum

Edwin Fox Museum

Edwin Fox is world’s 9th oldest ship, the only surviving ship that was used to transport convicts to Australia. It is unique because “it is only intact hull of a wooden deepwater sailing ship built to British specifications surviving in the world outside the Falkland Islands”. The history of this ship & the ship itself can be seen in its former glory at the Edwin Fox Maritime Centre at Picton where it is dry-docked.

Edwin Fox ship was built in India in 1853 at Sulkeali on the Ganges Delta and was labelled as the last of her type at the time of its construction. On her very first voyage she sailed to London via the Cape of Good Hope and a year later it was put to use as a troop ship for the Crimean War. After that, it was used for trading between Chinese ports.

In 1858 Edwin Fox was again used by the British, but this time it was to transport convicts to Freemantle in Western Australia. In 1867, it was converted to barque and 1873 onward was sailing to New Zealand; it made four voyages on the emigrant route to New Zealand & is known to have carried 751 settlers to the new colony.

With the advent of steam engine, she was towed down to Picton and was used as a freezer ship, then a coal storage ship and by 1950s was abandoned, left to rot. Edwin Fox Society bought it for 1 shilling in 1965, and was restored after 20 years when adequate funding was acquired. Today it is one of most visited attractions of Picton.

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