Inscribed and dated 1852 on the reverse: 'Liardets (now called Sandridge) with Melbourne - Mt Macedon in the distance - taken from the deck of the Ship "Panama" lying in Hobson's Bay, Novr 1852'; bears a label with a similar inscription on the backing board
The painter of this interesting early view of Port Melbourne in the Gold Rush era has not yet been identified. The ship Panama arrived in Melbourne in October 1852. Its departure via Hobart is documented in the unpublished journal of Morton Allport (1830-1878), a solicitor, amateur painter and photographer brought up in Hobart. Although he was taught painting and drawing by his mother and Skinner Prout, his surviving work is not as accomplished as the present watercolour. It was presumably executed by a fellow passenger. Interestingly there was a twenty seven year old passenger named James Marshall on the Panama's inward voyage, who may have been the solicitor who exhibited oil paintings of Hobson's Bay and Flemington at the Victorian Exhibition of Art in 1856 and later worked in Tasmania.1
We are most grateful to Gerard Hayes at the State Library of Victoria and Marian Jameson at the Allport Library in Hobart for assistance in cataloguing this work.
We are most grateful to Jane Clark for her assistance in cataloguing this work.
1. The Age, Melbourne, 30 October 1856; see Kerr, J. (ed.), The Dictionary of Australian Artists, Painters, Sketchers, Photographers and Engravers to 1870, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 1992, p. 513.
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