Standing on the banks of the Yarra River next to Queen's Bridge is one of our favourite Melbourne locations, Enterprize Wharf.
Enterprize Landing is the birthplace of Melbourne, when on Sunday 30th August 1835, settlers on the tall ship schooner Enterprize docked on this spot, thereby 'founding' Melbourne.
On the landing are 5 statue figures staring out across the Yarra River turning basin along with a plaque commemorating the landing (see below for inscription).
It is surprising how few Melburnian's are aware of the landing's existence or its significance in the history of Melbourne.
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FAQ's - Melbourne and its beginning
Q: When was the Founding of Melbourne, and who was responsible?
A: Melbourne was founded on Sunday, August 30, 1835 by settlers on the schooner Enterprize. They landed on the north bank (city side) of the Yarra River. Today the spot is named Enterprize Landing located next to Queens Bridge and opposite the Immigration Museum (previously Customs House).
Q: Who led the settlers, and why did they choose this spot to land?
A: The people came from Launceston in Van Diemens Land (Tasmania), and they were after land for grazing sheep. They were led by John Lancey (Captain) who was commissioned by John Pascoe Fawkner.
Fawkner owned the boat, but did not sail on its first trip into the Port Phillip District because he was forced behind by creditors.
They picked the site [roughly under Queens Bridge] because there was a small waterfall that stopped further progress up the river. The waterfall also separated the tidal movement from fresh water at that site. The waterfall had previously been found and noted by the Colony of New South Wales' surveyor, Charles Grimes, in 1803.
The Enterprize was tied up beside the north bank of the Yarra in August 1835 and the settlement of Melbourne began.
Q: Fawkner was not there, but was John Batman?
A: No. John Batman arrived on the 9th November 1835.
Q: So, our founders were not explorers, they were people on a search for land?
A: Yes, and although the government objected, events had been set in train that could not be stopped. Because of the action of those from the Enterprize, the City of Melbourne now stands.
Q: Apart from John Lancey, who were the other first settlers?
A: There was George Evans, a builder; carpenters William Jackson and Robert Hay Marr; blacksmith James Gilbert and his wife Mary; and a ploughman named Wise.
Also present to see the first settlers divide the land between them into lots along the river and commence the first building, was the commander of the Enterprize, Captain Hunter, two sailors, and Evan Evans, servant to George Evans.
Others would follow, like Fawkner, Batman, Gellibrand, Hoddle and Swanston to help shape the future Melbourne.
In memory of those who landed here in 1835 as the first settlement by Europeans, of the site that would become the City of Melbourne.
The schooner Enterprize (Captain Peter Hunter) from Launceston Tasmania, reached this stretch of the Yarra River on 29 August. On the following day Sunday 30th August, the horses and deck cargo were unloaded.
When the Enterprize returned to Launceston, the seven who remained were: John Lancey (master mariner) George Evans (settler) Evan Evans (his servant) James Gilbert, Thomas Morgan and Charles Wise, (servants of J.P. Fawkner - Owner of the schooner).
Mary Gilbert (the only woman in the party) was James Gilbert's wife gave birth on the 29th December 1835 to a son James, the first European child born in Melbourne.
Enterprize Landing Gallery
Foundation of Melbourne
History of Melbourne [Long]
History of Melbourne [Short]
Batman's Treaty of Melbourne
John Pascoe Fawkner
Enterprize | Tall Ship
Melbourne Day | 30th August
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❊ Address & Contact ❊
⊜ Enterprize Park Melbourne | Map
❊ Web Links ❊
→ Enterprize Wharf
→ Melbourne Day
❊ Also See... ❊
→ Enterprize Park
→ Enterprize | Tall Ship
→ Batman Park
→ Tags: Enterprize Landing Enterprise Landing Enterprize Park enterprize tall ship
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