Coordinates: 41°36′N 71°21′W / 41.600°N 71.350°W /
41.600; -71.350 (Narragansett Bay)
HMS Endeavour off the coast of New Holland, by Samuel Atkins c. 1794
Thomas Fishburn, Whitby
28 March 1768 as Earl of Pembroke
26 May 1768
Out of service:
March 1775, sold
Lord Sandwich, February 1776
Plymouth, United Kingdom
Scuttled, Newport, Rhode Island, 1778
General characteristics 
Class and type:
366 49⁄94 (bm)
97 ft 8 in (29.77 m)[a]
29 ft 2 in (8.89 m)
Depth of hold:
11 ft 4 in (3.45 m)
Full rigged ship
3,321 square yards (2,777 m2) of sail
7 to 8 knots (13 to 15 km/h) maximum
Boats & landing
yawl, pinnace, longboat, two skiffs
71 ship's company
10 4-pdrs, 12 swivel guns
HMS Endeavour, also known as HM Bark Endeavour, was a British Royal
Navy research vessel that
James Cook commanded on his first
voyage of discovery, to
Australia and New Zealand, from 1769 to 1771.
She was launched in 1764 as the collier Earl of Pembroke, and the navy
purchased her in 1768 for a scientific mission to the Pacific Ocean
and to explore the seas for the surmised
Terra Australis Incognita or
"unknown southern land". The navy renamed and commissioned her as His
Majesty's Bark the Endeavour. She departed
Plymouth in August 1768,
rounded Cape Horn, and reached
Tahiti in time to observe the 1769
transit of Venus across the Sun. She then set sail into the largely
uncharted ocean to the south, stopping at the Pacific islands of
Huahine, Bora Bora, and
Raiatea to allow Cook to claim them for Great
Britain. In September 1769, she anchored off New Zealand, the first
European vessel to reach the islands since Abel Tasman's Heemskerck
127 years earlier.
In April 1770, Endeavour became the first ship to reach the east coast
of Australia, when Cook went ashore at what is now known as Botany
Bay. Endeavour then sailed north along the Australian coast. She
narrowly avoided disaster after running aground on the Great Barrier
Reef, and Cook had to throw her guns overboard to lighten her. He then
beached her on the mainland for seven weeks to permit rudimentary
repairs to her hull. On 10 October 1770, she limped into port in
Batavia (now named Jakarta) in the
Dutch East Indies
Dutch East Indies for more
substantial repairs, her crew sworn to secrecy about the lands they
had visited. She resumed her westward journey on 26 December, rounded
Cape of Good Hope
Cape of Good Hope on 13 March 1771, and reached the English port
Dover on 12 July, having been at sea for nearly three years.
Largely forgotten after her epic voyage, Endeavour spent the next
three years sailing to and from the Falkland Islands. Sold into
private hands in 1775, and later renamed as Lord Sandwich, she was
hired as a British troop transport during the American War of
Independence and was scuttled in a blockade of Narragansett Bay, Rhode
Island, in 1778. As of 2016[update] her wreck had not been precisely
located but was thought to be one of a cluster of five in Newport
Harbor, and searching continued. Relics, including six of her cannon
and an anchor, are displayed at maritime museums worldwide. A replica
of Endeavour was launched in 1994 and is berthed alongside the
Australian National Maritime Museum
Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney Harbour. The US space
shuttle Endeavour is named after the ship and she is depicted on
New Zealand fifty-cent coin.
2 Purchase and refit by the Admiralty
3 Voyage of discovery
3.1 Outward voyage
3.2 Pacific exploration
3.4 Northward to Batavia
3.5 Return voyage
4 Later service
5 Final resting place
6 Endeavour relics and legacy
7 Replica vessels
8 See also
11 External links
Endeavour was originally the merchant collier Earl of Pembroke, built
by Thomas Fishburn for Thomas Millner, launched in June 1764 from the
coal and whaling port of
Whitby in North Yorkshire, and of a type
known locally as the
Whitby Cat. She was ship-rigged and sturdily
built with a broad, flat bow, a square stern, and a long box-like body
with a deep hold.
A flat-bottomed design made her well-suited to sailing in shallow
waters and allowed her to be beached for loading and unloading of
cargo and for basic repairs without requiring a dry dock. Her hull,
internal floors, and futtocks were built from traditional white oak,
her keel and stern post from elm, and her masts from pine and fir.
Plans of the ship also show a double keelson to lock the keel, floors
and frames in place.
Some doubt exists about the height of her standing masts (excludes top
and gallant masts), as surviving diagrams of Endeavour depict the
body of the vessel only, and not the mast plan. While her main and
foremast standing spars (excludes top and gallant masts) are
accepted to be a standard (standards differed from shipyard to
shipyard and country to country) 69 and 65 feet (21 and
20 m), respectively from an annotation on one surviving ship plan
National Maritime Museum
National Maritime Museum in
Greenwich NMM ZAZ6594  which records
these lengths has the mizzen as "16 yards 29 inches"
(15.4 m). If correct, this would produce an oddly truncated
mast a full 9 feet (2.7 m) shorter than the standards of the
day. late 20th century research suggested the annotation may
be a transcription error and should read "19 yards 29
inches" (18.1 m), which would more closely conform with both the
naval standards (which standard?) and the lengths of the other
A more recent critical review of contemporary sources doesn't require
a supposed typo in 1771 to explain this shorter measurement for the
mizzen whilst at the same time offers supporting evidence of its cap
being at the taller supposed normal height. Sydney Parkinson's
sketches and paintings of Cooks Bark Endeavour along with the 1771
Woolwich Yard Bark Endeavour spar measurements National Maritime
Greenwich NMM ZAZ6594, and other contemporary sources
suggest that the shorter mizzen mast was not stepped in the
hold/keelson, but instead was stepped in the lower deck 10 ft
above this as was sometimes done. This would bring its standing
height at the cap to within a supposed normal height of around 8–
9 ft below the main mast cap and approx 5.5 ft below the
foremast cap when comparing the heights of the standing mast tops
(excludes top and gallant masts) from the level of the water line.
Whereas the shorter mizzen stepped in the hold on the keelson instead
of the lower deck would make the standing mizzen cap 18 ft below
the main mast cap which is clearly not the case when critically
examining Sydney Parkinson's drawings and the contemporary painting
HMS Endeavour off the coast of New Holland, by Samuel Atkins c.
1794 at the top of this page. Zooming this painting also reveals that
the position of the mizzen channel is forward to inline with the mast
which it is when looking at the angle of the mizzen chainplates on the
original as fitted draught NMM ZAZ7844. Using these mizzen
chainplate angles from this as fitted draught it is possible to
extrapolate where the top of the standing mast could be and combined
with the similar shroud angles
Sydney Parkinson drew in his sketch of
the larboard quarter of Endeavour support this theory of the shorter
standing mizzen stepped in the lower deck which would make its
standing cap 10 foot higher than if stepped in the hold.
The replica standing mizzen is built to this shorter measurement and
stepped in the hold on the keelson, as is the model in the National
Maritime Museum in Greenwich. There is a difference between the height
of the mizzen fore-and-aft spar in the contemporary painting of Earl
of Pembroke before the naval refit of 1768 by Luny (below) and its
position on the replica in the photographs, compared to the height of
the lowest spars on the fore and mainmasts.
Purchase and refit by the Admiralty
On 16 February 1768, the
Royal Society petitioned King George III to
finance a scientific expedition to the Pacific to study and observe
the 1769 transit of Venus across the sun. Royal approval was
granted for the expedition, and the
Admiralty elected to combine the
scientific voyage with a confidential mission to search the south
Pacific for signs of the postulated continent Terra Australis
Incognita (or "unknown southern land").
Royal Society suggested command be given to Scottish geographer
Alexander Dalrymple, whose acceptance was conditional on a brevet
commission as a captain in the Royal Navy. First Lord of the Admiralty
Edward Hawke refused, going so far as to say he would rather cut off
his right hand than give command of a navy vessel to someone not
educated as a seaman. In refusing Dalrymple's command, Hawke was
influenced by previous insubordination aboard the sloop
HMS Paramour in 1698, when naval officers had refused to take
orders from civilian commander Dr. Edmond Halley. The impasse was
broken when the
Admiralty proposed James Cook, a naval officer with a
background in mathematics and cartography. Acceptable to both
parties, Cook was promoted to
Lieutenant and named as commander of the
Earl of Pembroke, later HMS Endeavour, leaving
Whitby Harbour in 1768.
By Thomas Luny, dated 1790.
On 27 May 1768, Cook took command of Earl of Pembroke, valued in March
at £2,307. 5s. 6d. but ultimately purchased for £2,840. 10s. 11d.
and assigned for use in the Society's expedition.[b] She was
refitted at Deptford on the
River Thames for the sum of £2,294,
almost the price of the ship itself. The hull was sheathed and
caulked to protect against shipworm, and a third internal deck
installed to provide cabins, a powder magazine and storerooms. The
new cabins provided around 2 square metres (22 sq ft) of
floorspace apiece and were allocated to Cook and the Royal Society
representatives: naturalist Joseph Banks, Banks' assistants Daniel
Solander and Herman Spöring, astronomer Charles Green, and artists
Sydney Parkinson and Alexander Buchan. These cabins encircled the
officer's mess. The Great Cabin at the rear of the deck was
designed as a workroom for Cook and the Royal Society. On the rear
lower deck, cabins facing on to the mate's mess were assigned to
Zachary Hickes and John Gore, ship's surgeon William
Monkhouse, the gunner Stephen Forwood, ship's master Robert Molyneux,
and the captain's clerk Richard Orton. The adjoining open mess
deck provided sleeping and living quarters for the marines and crew,
and additional storage space.
A longboat, pinnace and yawl were provided as ship's boats, though the
longboat was rotten and had to be rebuilt and painted with white lead
before it could be brought aboard. These were accompanied by two
privately owned skiffs, one belonging to the boatswain John Gathrey,
and the other to Banks. The ship was also equipped with a set of
28 ft (8.5 m) sweeps to allow her to be rowed forward if
becalmed or demasted. The refitted vessel was commissioned as His
Majesty's Bark the Endeavour, to distinguish her from the 4-gun cutter
On 21 July 1768, Endeavour sailed to Galleon's Reach to take on
armaments to protect her against potentially hostile Pacific island
natives. Ten 4-pounder cannons were brought aboard, six of which
were mounted on the upper deck and the remainder stowed in the hold.
Twelve swivel guns were also supplied, and fixed to posts along the
quarterdeck, sides and bow. The ship departed for
Plymouth on 30
July, for provisioning and to board her crew of 85, including
12 Royal Marines. Cook also ordered that twelve tons of pig
iron be brought on board as sailing ballast.
Voyage of discovery
Main article: First voyage of James Cook
Plymouth on 26 August 1768, carrying 94 people
and 18 months of provisions.[c] Livestock on board included pigs,
poultry, two greyhounds and a milking goat.
The first port of call was
Funchal in the Madeira Islands, which
Endeavour reached on 12 September. The ship was recaulked and painted,
and fresh vegetables, beef and water were brought aboard for the next
leg of the voyage. While in port, an accident cost the life of
master's mate Robert Weir, who became entangled in the anchor cable
and was dragged overboard when the anchor was released. To replace
him, Cook shanghaied a sailor from an American sloop anchored
Endeavour then continued south along the coast of Africa and across
the Atlantic to South America, arriving in
Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro on 13
November 1768. Fresh food and water were brought aboard and the ship
departed for Cape Horn, which she reached during stormy weather on 13
January 1769. Attempts to round the Cape over the next two days were
unsuccessful, and Endeavour was repeatedly driven back by wind, rain
and contrary tides. Cook noted that the seas off the Cape were large
enough to regularly submerge the bow of the ship as she rode down from
the crests of waves. At last, on 16 January the wind eased and the
ship was able to pass the Cape and anchor in the Bay of Good Success
on the Pacific coast. The crew were sent to collect wood and
water, while Banks and his team gathered hundreds of plant specimens
from along the icy shore. On 17 January two of Banks' servants died
from cold while attempting to return to the ship during a heavy
Endeavour resumed her voyage on 21 January 1769, heading
west-northwest into warmer weather. She reached
Tahiti on 10
April, where she remained for the next three months. The transit
of Venus across the Sun occurred on 3 June, and was observed and
recorded by astronomer Charles Green from Endeavour's deck.
The transit observed, Endeavour departed
Tahiti on 13 July and headed
northwest to allow Cook to survey and name the Society Islands.
Landfall was made at Huahine,
Raiatea and Borabora, providing
opportunities for Cook to claim each of them as British territories.
An attempt to land the pinnace on the Austral Island of Rurutu was
thwarted by rough surf and the rocky shoreline. On 15 August,
Endeavour finally turned south to explore the open ocean for Terra
In October 1769, Endeavour reached the coastline of New Zealand,
becoming the first European vessel to do so since Abel Tasman's
Heemskerck in 1642. Unfamiliar with such ships, the Māori people
at Cook's first landing point in
Poverty Bay thought the ship was a
floating island, or a gigantic bird from their mythical homeland of
Hawaiki. Endeavour spent the next six months sailing close to
shore, while Cook mapped the coastline and concluded that New
Zealand comprised two large islands and was not the hoped-for Terra
Australis. In March 1770, the longboat from Endeavour carried Cook
ashore to allow him to formally proclaim British sovereignty over New
Zealand. On his return, Endeavour resumed her voyage westward, her
crew sighting the east coast of
Australia on 19 April. On 29
April, she became the first European vessel to make landfall on the
east coast of Australia, when Cook landed one of the ship's boats on
the southern shore of what is now known as Botany Bay, New South
An 1893 chart showing Endeavour's track
For the next four months, Cook charted the coast of Australia, heading
generally northward. Just before 11 pm on 11 June 1770, the ship
struck a reef, today called Endeavour Reef, within the Great
Barrier Reef system. The sails were immediately taken down, a kedging
anchor set and an unsuccessful attempt was made to drag the ship back
to open water. The reef Endeavour had struck rose so steeply from the
seabed that although the ship was hard aground, Cook measured depths
up to 70 feet (21 m) less than one ship's length away.
Cook then ordered that the ship be lightened to help her float off the
reef. Iron and stone ballast, spoiled stores and all but four of the
ship's guns were thrown overboard, and the ship's drinking water
pumped out. The crew attached buoys to the discarded guns with the
intention of retrieving them later, but this proved impractical.
Every man on board took turns on the pumps, including Cook and
When, by Cook's reckoning, about 40 to 50 long tons (41 to 51 t)
of equipment had been thrown overboard, on the next high tide a second
unsuccessful attempt was made to pull the ship free. In the
afternoon of 12 June, the longboat carried out two large bower
anchors, and block and tackle were rigged to the anchor chains to
allow another attempt on the evening high tide. The ship had started
to take on water through a hole in her hull. Although the leak would
certainly increase once off the reef, Cook decided to risk the attempt
and at 10:20 pm the ship was floated on the tide and successfully
drawn off. The anchors were retrieved, except for one which could
not be freed from the seabed and had to be abandoned.
As expected the leak increased once the ship was off the reef, and all
three working pumps had to be continually manned. A mistake occurred
in sounding the depth of water in the hold, when a new man measured
the length of a sounding line from the outside plank of the hull where
his predecessor had used the top of the cross-beams. The mistake
suggested the water depth had increased by about 18 inches
(46 cm) between soundings, sending a wave of fear through the
ship. As soon as the mistake was realised, redoubled efforts kept the
pumps ahead of the leak.
The prospects if the ship sank were grim. The vessel was 24 miles
(39 km) from shore and the three ship's boats could not carry
the entire crew. Despite this,
Joseph Banks noted in his journal
the calm efficiency of the crew in the face of danger, contrary to
stories he had heard of seamen panicking or refusing orders in such
Midshipman Jonathon Monkhouse proposed fothering the ship, as he had
previously been on a merchant ship which used the technique
successfully. He was entrusted with supervising the task, sewing
bits of oakum and wool into an old sail, which was then drawn under
the ship to allow water pressure to force it into the hole in the
hull. The effort succeeded and soon very little water was entering,
allowing the crew to stop two of the three pumps.
Endeavour beached at
Endeavour River for repairs after her grounding
Great Barrier Reef
Great Barrier Reef in 1770. By Johann Fritzsch, published 1786.
Endeavour then resumed her course northward and parallel to the reef,
the crew looking for a safe harbour in which to make repairs. On 13
June, the ship came to a broad watercourse that Cook named the
Endeavour River. Cook attempted to enter the river mouth, but
strong winds and rain prevented Endeavour from crossing the bar until
the morning of 17 June. She grounded briefly on a sand spit but was
refloated an hour later and warped into the river proper by early
afternoon. The ship was promptly beached on the southern bank and
careened to make repairs to the hull. Torn sails and rigging were also
replaced and the hull scraped free of barnacles.
An examination of the hull showed that a piece of coral the size of a
man's fist had sliced clean through the timbers and then broken off.
Surrounded by pieces of oakum from the fother, this coral fragment had
helped plug the hole in the hull and preserved the ship from sinking
on the reef.
Northward to Batavia
After waiting for the wind, Endeavour resumed her voyage on the
afternoon of 5 August 1770, reaching the northernmost point of Cape
York Peninsula fifteen days later. On 22 August, Cook was rowed ashore
to a small coastal island to proclaim British sovereignty over the
eastern Australian mainland. Cook christened his landing place
Possession Island, and ceremonial volleys of gunfire from the shore
and Endeavour's deck marked the occasion.
Route of Endeavour from the
Torres Strait to Java, August and
Endeavour then resumed her voyage westward along the coast, picking a
path through intermittent shoals and reefs with the help of the
pinnace, which was rowed ahead to test the water depth. By 26
August she was out of sight of land, and had entered the open waters
Torres Strait between
Australia and New Guinea, earlier
Luis Váez de Torres
Luis Váez de Torres in 1606. To keep Endeavour's voyages
and discoveries secret, Cook confiscated the log books and journals of
all on board and ordered them to remain silent about where they had
After a three-day layover off the island of Savu, Endeavour sailed on
to Batavia, the capital of the Dutch East Indies, on 10 October. A
day later lightning during a sudden tropical storm struck the ship,
but the rudimentary "electric chain" or lightning rod that Cook had
ordered rigged to Endeavour's mast saved her from serious damage.
The ship remained in very poor condition following her grounding on
Great Barrier Reef
Great Barrier Reef in June. The ship's carpenter, John Seetterly,
observed that she was "very leaky – makes from twelve to
six inches an hour, occasioned by her main keel being wounded in
many places, false keel gone from beyond the midships. Wounded on her
larbord side where the greatest leak is but I could not come at it for
the water." An inspection of the hull revealed that some
unrepaired planks were cut through to within ⅛ inch
(3 mm). Cook noted it was a "surprise to every one who saw her
bottom how we had kept her above water" for the previous three-month
voyage across open seas.
After riding at anchor for two weeks, Endeavour was heaved out of the
water on 9 November and laid on her side for repairs. Some damaged
timbers were found to be infested with shipworms, which required
careful removal to ensure they did not spread throughout the hull.
Broken timbers were replaced and the hull recaulked, scraped of
shellfish and marine flora, and repainted. Finally, the rigging
and pumps were renewed and fresh stores brought aboard for the return
journey to England. Repairs and replenishment were completed by
Christmas Day 1770, and the next day Endeavour weighed anchor and set
sail westward towards the Indian Ocean.
Though Endeavour was now in good condition, her crew were not. During
the ship's stay in Batavia, all but 10 of the 94 people aboard
had been taken ill with malaria and dysentery.[e] By the time
Endeavour set sail on 26 December, seven crew members had died and
another forty were too sick to attend their duties. Over the
following twelve weeks, a further 23 died from disease and were buried
at sea, including Spöring, Green, Parkinson, and the ship's surgeon
Cook attributed the sickness to polluted drinking water, and ordered
that it be purified with lime juice, but this had little effect.
Jonathan Monkhouse, who had proposed fothering the ship to save her
from sinking on the reef, died on 6 February, followed six days later
by ship's carpenter John Seetterly, whose skilled repair work in
Batavia had allowed Endeavour to resume her voyage. The health of
the surviving crew members then slowly improved as the month
progressed, with the last deaths from disease being three ordinary
seamen on 27 February.
On 13 March 1771, Endeavour rounded the
Cape of Good Hope
Cape of Good Hope and made
Cape Town two days later. Those still sick were taken ashore
for treatment. The ship remained in port for four weeks awaiting
the recovery of the crew and undergoing minor repairs to her
masts. On 15 April, the sick were brought back on board along with
ten recruits from Cape Town, and Endeavour resumed her homeward
voyage. The English mainland was sighted on 10 July and
Endeavour entered the port of
Dover two days later.
Approximately one month after his return, Cook was promoted to the
rank of Commander, and by November 1771 was in receipt of Admiralty
Orders for a second expedition, this time aboard HMS Resolution.
He was killed during an altercation with Hawaiians at Kealakekua Bay
on 14 February 1779.
While Cook was fêted for his successful voyage, Endeavour was largely
forgotten. Within a week of her return to England, she was directed to
Woolwich Dockyard for refitting as a naval transport. Under the
Lieutenant James Gordon she then made three return voyages
 to the Falkland Islands.
The first, with Joseph Irving as sailing master (replaced by John
Dykes at Portsmouth due to illness), was to deliver "sufficient
provisions to serve 350 men to the end of the year 1772"; she
sailed from Portsmouth on 8 November 1771, but due to terrible weather
did not arrive at Port Egmont (the British base in the Falkland
Islands) until 1 March. Endeavour sailed from Port Egmont on 4 May in
a three-month non-stop voyage until she anchored at Portsmouth.
The second voyage was to reduce the garrison and replace HM Sloop
Hound, John Burr Commander, with a smaller vessel, namely the 36-ton
shallop Penguin, commander Samuel Clayton. She was a collapsible
vessel and was no sooner built than taken apart, and the pieces were
stowed in Endeavour. Endeavour sailed in November with Hugh Kirkland
as the sailing master, and additionally the crew of Penguin, and four
ship's carpenters whose job was to reassemble Penguin on arrival,
which was 28 January 1773. On 17 April Endeavour and Hound sailed for
England with their crew. One of Penguin's crew was Bernard Penrose who
wrote an account. Samuel Clayton also wrote an account.
The third voyage sailed in January 1774 and her purpose was to
evacuate the Falklands entirely as Britain was faced with political
difficulties from the American Colonies, the French and the Spanish.
The government thought that if British ships and troops were engaged
in America, Spain might seize the Falklands, capturing the small
garrison at Port Egmont and maybe killing some of them - this, it was
feared, would trigger an outcry which might topple the government.
England in January 1774, and sailed from the Falklands
with all the British inhabitants on 23 April, leaving a flag and a
Endeavour was paid off in September 1774, and in March 1775 was
sold by the Navy to shipping magnate J. Mather for £645.
Mather returned her to sea for at least one commercial voyage to
Archangel in Russia.
American War of Independence
American War of Independence had commenced, the British
government needed ships to carry troops and materiel across the
Atlantic. In 1775 Mather submitted Endeavour as a transport ship,
and she was rejected. Thinking that renaming her would fool Deptford
Yard, Mather resubmitted Endeavour under the name Lord Sandwich
Lord Sandwich was rejected in no uncertain terms: "Unfit for service.
She was sold out Service Called Endeavour Bark refused before". Lord
Sandwich then had serious repairs, and on her third submission was
accepted and was termed Lord Sandwich 2 as there was already a
transport ship called Lord Sandwich.
Lord Sandwich 2, master William Author, sailed on 6 May 1776 from
Portsmouth in a fleet of 100 vessels, 68 of which were transports,
which was under orders to support Howe's campaign to capture New York.
Lord Sandwich 2 carried 206 men mainly from the Hessian du Corps
regiment of Hessian mercenaries. The crossing was terrible, and
two Hessians who were in the same fleet made accounts of the
voyage. The scattered fleet assembled at Halifax and then sailed
to Sandy Hook where other ships and troops assembled. On 15 August
1776 Lord Sandwich 2 was anchored at Sandy Hook; also assembled there
was Adventure, which had sailed with Resolution on Cook's second
voyage, now a storeship, captained by John Hallum. Another ship there
at that time was HMS Siren, captained by Tobias Furneaux, who had
commanded Adventure on Cook's second voyage.
New York was eventually captured, but
Newport, Rhode Island
Newport, Rhode Island in the
hands of the Americans posed a threat as a base for recapturing New
York, so in November 1776 a fleet, which included Lord Sandwich 2
carrying Hessian Troops, set out to take Rhode Island, which
was taken but not subdued, and Lord Sandwich 2 was needed as a prison
Final resting place
A recovered cannon from Endeavour on display at the National Maritime
Museum in Greenwich, England
The surrender of Burgoyne's army at Saratoga, brought France into the
war, and in the summer of 1778 a pincer plan was agreed to recapture
Newport: the Continental Army would approach overland, and a French
Fleet would sail into the harbour. To prevent the latter the British
commander, Captain John Brisbane, determined to blockade the bay by
sinking surplus vessels at its mouth. Between 3 and 6 August a fleet
Royal Navy and hired craft, including Lord Sandwich 2, were
scuttled at various locations in the Bay.[f] Lord Sandwich 2,
previously Endeavour, previously Earl of Pembroke, was sunk on 4
The owners of the sunken vessels were compensated by the British
government for the loss of their ships. The
Admiralty valuation for 10
of the sunken vessels recorded that many had been built in Yorkshire,
and the details of the Lord Sandwich transport matched those of the
former Endeavour including construction in Whitby, a burthen of 368
71/94 tons, and re-entry into Navy service on 10 February
1776. In 1834 a letter appeared in the
Providence Journal of Rhode
Island, drawing attention to the possible presence of the former
Endeavour on the seabed of the bay. This was swiftly disputed by
the British consul in Rhode Island, who wrote claiming that Endeavour
had been bought from Mather by the French in 1790 and renamed
Liberté. The consul later admitted he had heard this not from the
Admiralty, but as hearsay from the former owners of the French
ship. It was later suggested Liberté, which sank off Newport in
1793, was in fact another of Cook's ships, the former HMS
Resolution, or another Endeavour, a naval schooner sold out of
service in 1782. A further letter to the
Providence Journal stated
that a retired English sailor was conducting guided tours of a hulk on
River Thames as late as 1825, claiming that the ship had once been
In 1991 the
Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project (RIMAP) began
research into the identity of the thirteen transports sunk as part of
the Newport blockade of 1778, including Lord Sandwich. In 1999 RIMAP
discovered documents in the
Public Record Office
Public Record Office (now called the
National Archives) in
London confirming that Endeavour had been
renamed Lord Sandwich, had served as a troop transport to North
America, and had been scuttled at Newport as part of the 1778 fleet of
In 1999 a combined research team from RIMAP and the Australian
National Maritime Museum
National Maritime Museum examined some known wrecks in the
harbour and in 2000, RIMAP and the ANMM examined a site that
appears to be one of the blockade vessels, partly covered by a
separate wreck of a 20th-century barge. The older remains were those
of a wooden vessel of approximately the same size, and possibly a
similar design and materials as Lord Sandwich ex Endeavour.
Confirmation that Cook's former ship had indeed been in Newport Harbor
sparked public interest in locating her wreck. However,
further mapping showed eight other 18th-century wrecks in Newport
Harbor, some with features and conditions also consistent with
Endeavour. In 2006 RIMAP announced that the wrecks were unlikely to be
raised. In 2016 RIMAP concluded that there was a probability of
80 to 100% that the wreck of Endeavour was still in Newport Harbor,
probably one of a cluster of five wrecks on the seafloor, and planned
to investigate the ships and their artifacts further. They were
seeking funds to build facilities for handling and storing recovered
Endeavour relics and legacy
In addition to the search for the remains of the ship herself, there
was substantial Australian interest in locating relics of the ship's
south Pacific voyage. In 1886, the Working Men's Progress Association
Cooktown sought to recover the six cannons thrown overboard
when Endeavour grounded on the Great Barrier Reef. A £300 reward was
offered for anyone who could locate and recover the guns, but searches
that year and the next were fruitless and the money went
unclaimed. Remains of equipment left at
Endeavour River were
discovered in around 1900, and in 1913 the crew of a merchant steamer
erroneously claimed to have recovered an Endeavour cannon from shallow
water near the Reef.
In 1937, a small part of Endeavour's keel was given to the Australian
Government by philanthropist
Charles Wakefield in his capacity as
president of the Admiral
Arthur Phillip Memorial. Australian
Joseph Lyons described the section of keel as
"intimately associated with the discovery and foundation of
Searches were resumed for the lost
Endeavour Reef cannons, but
expeditions in 1966, 1967, and 1968 were unsuccessful. They were
finally recovered in 1969 by a research team from the American Academy
of Natural Sciences, using a sophisticated magnetometer to locate
the cannons, a quantity of iron ballast and the abandoned bower
anchor. Conservation work on the cannons was undertaken by the
Australian National Maritime Museum, after which two of the
cannons were displayed at its headquarters in Sydney's Darling
Harbour, and eventually put on display at
Botany Bay and the National
Australia in Canberra (with a replica remaining at the
museum). A third cannon and the bower anchor were displayed at the
James Cook Museum in Cooktown, with the remaining three at the
National Maritime Museum
National Maritime Museum in London, the
Academy of Natural Sciences
Academy of Natural Sciences in
Philadelphia, and the Museum of
New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa in
Endeavour's Pacific voyage was further commemorated in the use of her
image on the reverse of the
New Zealand fifty-cent coin, and in
the naming of the
Space Shuttle Endeavour
Space Shuttle Endeavour in 1989.
Main article: HM Bark Endeavour Replica
HM Bark Endeavour Replica. Australian National Maritime Museum, Sydney
In January 1988, to commemorate the
Australian Bicentenary of European
settlement in Australia, work began in Fremantle, Western Australia,
on a replica of Endeavour. Financial difficulties delayed
completion until December 1993, and the vessel was not commissioned
until April 1994. The replica vessel commenced her maiden voyage
in October of that year, sailing to Sydney Harbour and then following
Cook's path from
Botany Bay northward to Cooktown. From 1996 to
2002, the replica retraced Cook's ports of call around the world,
arriving in the original Endeavour's home port of
Whitby in May
1997 and June 2002. Footage of waves shot while rounding
Cape Horn on this voyage was later used in digitally composited scenes
in the 2003 film Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World.
The replica Endeavour visited various European ports before
undertaking her final ocean voyage from Whitehaven to Sydney Harbour
on 8 November 2004. Her arrival in Sydney was delayed when she ran
aground in Botany Bay, a short distance from the point where Cook
first set foot in
Australia 235 years earlier. The replica
Endeavour finally entered Sydney Harbour on 17 April 2005, having
travelled 170,000 nautical miles (310,000 km), including twice
around the world. Ownership of the replica was transferred to the
Australian National Maritime Museum
Australian National Maritime Museum in 2005 for permanent service as a
museum ship in Sydney's Darling Harbour.
A second full-size replica of Endeavour is berthed on the River Tees
in Stockton-on-Tees. While it reflects the external dimensions of
Cook's vessel, this replica was constructed with a steel rather than a
timber frame, has one less internal deck than the original, and is not
designed to go to sea.
The Russell Museum, in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand, has a seagoing
one-fifth scale replica of Endeavour. It was built in Auckland; during
1969 and 1970 it sailed some 15,000 miles (24,000 km) in New
Zealand and Australia.
Whitby the "Bark Endeavour Whitby" is a scaled-down replica of the
original ship. It relies on engines for propulsion and is a little
less than half the size of the original. Trips for tourists take them
along the coast to Sandsend.
Blue Latitudes, a travel book by Tony Horwitz
European and American voyages of scientific exploration
^[a] Other sources give Endeavour's length overall as 106 ft
^[b] In today's terms, this equates to a valuation for Endeavour of
approximately £265,000 and a purchase price of £326,400.
^[c] Provisions loaded at the outset of the voyage included 6,000
pieces of pork and 4,000 of beef, nine tons of bread, five tons of
flour, three tons of sauerkraut, one ton of raisins and sundry
quantities of cheese, salt, peas, oil, sugar and oatmeal. Alcohol
supplies consisted of 250 barrels of beer, 44 barrels of brandy and 17
barrels of rum.
^[d] The shanghaiied man was John Thurman, born in New York but a
British subject and therefore eligible for involuntary impressment
Royal Navy vessel. Thurman journeyed with Endeavour to
Tahiti where he was promoted to the position of sailmaker's assistant,
and then to
New Zealand and Australia. He died of disease on 3
February 1771, during the voyage between Batavia and Cape Town.
^[e] Some of Endeavour's crew also contracted an unspecified lung
infection. Cook noted that disease of various kinds had broken
out aboard every ship berthed in Batavia at the time, and that "this
seems to have been a year of General sickness over most parts of
India" and in England.
^[f] A number of British vessels were sunk in local waters in the days
leading up to the 29–30 August 1778, Battle of Rhode Island. These
were the four
Royal Navy frigates on 5 August along the coast of
Aquidneck Island north of Newport: Juno 32, Lark 32, Orpheus 32, and
Cerberus 28; the
Royal Navy sloop of war Kingsfisher and galleys Alarm
and Spitfire in the Sakonnet River on 30 July; the
Royal Navy frigate
Flora and sloop of war Falcon in Newport Harbour on 9 August; and ten
of the thirteen privately owned British transports sunk in Newport
Harbour between 3–5 August were Betty, Britannia, Earl of Oxford,
Good Intent, Grand Duke of Russia, Lord Sandwich, Malaga, Rachel and
Mary, Susanna, and Union.
^ Hough 1994, p. 55
^ a b Knight, C. (1933). "H.M. Bark Endeavour". Mariner's Mirror.
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^ Blainey 2008, p. 17
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^ Beaglehole 1968, p. 2
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^ a b c
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National Maritime Museum
Greenwich Endeavour 1771 draught
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^ a b c The Seamans Vade-Mecum and defensive war by sea, William
National Maritime Museum
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Wikimedia Commons has media related to HM Bark Endeavour (ship, 1764).
Wikisource has original text related to this article:
The Endeavour Journal of Sir Joseph Banks
Has the Endveaour been found off Rhode Island? Royal Geographical
Society of South Australia
Picture of the recovered anchor and team, in Great Scot newsletter of
Scotch College (Melbourne), April 2004
Captain Cook's Journal During the First Voyage Round the World at
Captain Cook's Journal during his first voyage round the world made in
H.M. Bark Endeavour 1768–71 – ebook by The University of Adelaide
Flyer from the
Australian National Maritime Museum
Australian National Maritime Museum about the HMB
Endeavour replica (PDF)
Endeavour runs aground, Pictures and information about the discovery
of Endeavour's ballast and cannons on the ocean floor off Queensland,
Australia, in 1969, National Museum of Australia
Captain James Cook
Johann Reinhold Forster
Paintings of the death of Cook
Zoffany's Death of Cook
Statue in The Mall, London
Transit of Venus
Transit of Venus observed from Tahiti
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James Cook Collection: Australian Muse