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1 correction by burgjoh - Show corrections







A special meeting of the shareholders of the AS N. Company was held to day, to con Bider the proposal made by the Queensland Steam Shipping Company for the purchase of the companys fleet. The meeting, Which was the largest ever held was of a private character, and the pro- ceedings have not been disclosed be- yond the fact that it was almost unani-

mously decided to authorise the directors to deal with the offer. Only five shareholders opposed the motion in favour of leaving the matter in the bands of the directors.

It is understood that the amount of the offer is £200,000, but that an   additional £20,000 or £30,000 will be       required if the Queensland Company are allowed to take over the Queensland mail contracts, which the A.S N Company are now engaged in carrying out. It was stated that, in the event of the proposed purchase being effected the present services would be maintained with unimpaired efficiency. The negotiations between the companies will probably be concluded on Tuesday or Wed-

neseay, but, in the meantime, no detailed information will be given.

The proposal to purchase the fleet of the Australasian Steam Navigation Company has excited considerable interest in shipping circles in Melbourne The terms of purchase have not been divulged, but it is stated that they are considered by the directors of the Australasian Steam Navigation Company to be of a satisfactory nature The amount in dispute is about £20 000 and it is expected that a compromise will be agreed upon The offer was made through the British India and Queensland Agency Company Limited, which manages the business agencies of the Queensland Steam Shipping Company and the British India Steam Navigation Company The latter companies are practically iden- tical lins is admitted by Messrs. Huddart, Parker, and Co, who are the agents of the British India Steam Navigation Company, and it is well known in shipping circles During the recent dispute m the shipping trade, the fact was often referred to and the seamens unions at one time proposed to resort to the extreme measure ot boycotting the boats of the Queensland Steam Shipping Company on this ground. It is therefore cor- rect to state that it is really the British India Steam Navigation Company that is treating for the purchase of the ASS Company _hey will find probably the whole ot the capital, and will conduct the aervice through local agents, -he movement is regarded as one of great importance and may lead to al

tetations in the constitution of other shipping companies in Australia. It is stated that there are at present too many vessels em ployed in the Queensland trade Ihe com pames competing for the trade ure the Australasian Steam Navigation Company, the Queensland Steam Shipping Company, and Messrs W Howard Smith and Sons Limited Some time ago a proposal wai made that each company should lay up two ot its boats but the negotiations that took place did not end in any practical result Hie competition is keen and the serious deprcs Bion in the shipping trade has had an effect upon the prolits of the shipowners. Hie retirement of the one company from tne trade would it is believed be productive oi good resulte A lurte number ol boats Would

e taken off the trade The cost ot running a steamer suitable for the service is about ¡£10 000 per annum and a great saving might therefore be effected by reducing the number of boats to the luir requirements of the trade. In addition to this it is pointed out that it will be less difficult for two than for three companies to manage the trade in a way that will be advantageous to themselves There need be no undue competition and while pro via mp all the accommodation the public require, the companies can secure for them Belvcs a reasonable return for the capital invested 1 he fleet of the Australasian Steam Navigation Company, which it is proposed to purchase, consists of tbo followiug

coats -



Toni ago.


l_ln)lp _,


.19 Cintra _


City of Adelaido


Cit) of Melbourno _

C15 Díngadeo

SOI Egmont Elaman.

410 41)0 Eurimbla _

608 Jbltzro)

.01 Glanworth -

res Quilla

7 tia IloWotll

SOS Janies I attcrson

.M7 Katoomba

«SI leichardt

450 Palmor

1S8 Porpoise





UM Itockton

1108 Tontartlcn

bU7 "Victoria

034 Wentworth

010 ?Taralla


These 25 boats represent a total net ton nage of about l-l 000 or a total carrying capacity of 22 000 tons 'Hie following is the fleet of the Queensland Steam Shipping Company Limited -Archer, .40 tons net Barcoo, 74ri, Corea 3S2 Gunga 108

Gympie, 12u , Maranoa 803 , Polly 89 , '1 aldorá, 12. Truganini ldO , and Vi urre_o, S07 Tour of these would probably be re taincd m the trade to which they would add the best boats m the lleet of the A S N Company, and would be in a position to pio vida an excellent and efficient service Of the steamers named the tallowing nre con Bidered to be suitable for the Queensland trade -The Birksgate the Outra the Dm cadee, the Egmont, the --.luwiinc. the J ur imbin, the 1 ltzroy, tlie Glanworth, the Gunga the Hesketh the Qmrning the ^Rockton the Tenterden the Victoria and ' the \\ entvvorth

The Australasian Steam Navigation Com pany is the pioneer steam shipping com pany ot the Australian colonies mid in view of its probable early disnp pearonce from the scene of nctivo ope rations a brief review of its hiBtory will be of interest It was established us the result of a meeting held at the Itoyal Hotel

Sydney, on the 1st August, 1839 under the title ot the Hunter Uiver Steam Navig-itioii Co Its capital was fixed at ¿40 000 and the Bhares as was the custom then were pur chased largely by bills ot very long date 'X he lirst directors were Messra John Eales

John Hosking LdwardLord William Drake, Wm Abercrombie Ihomas Steele Daniel Cooper Kobert bcott anti \\ ard Stephens. Mr Whytlaw was appointed manager and Tiremises were purchased at the foot of Margaret Btreet, Darling Hnrbour ior the compan) s head office and wharf for £5 000. The first Vessel owned by the company was the s s Kose Captain btcward, anil her arrival IB said to have created quite a sensation m Sjdnev She was a small boat of 172 tons burthen length 14Bft, breadth 19ft Cm and depth lilt. Hie pre xmum on insurances was then very high Ihe company found that the cost ot insur ance would in three >« equal the value of the vessel and they therefore resolved to bear their ow ii risks 1 he Shamrock anti the Thistle arrived subsequentl) the former on the 20th October 12ldn)SOUt and these completed for the time being the fleet uf the compan) Ihe bottoms ot the vessels were de ined b) puttint, them a hore on the south si le of the Darling Harbour, and a dock of a primitive eli ir ictcr was dJ¡, for them in the bank of the Hunter Uiver In kpepmg with the dic,nit) and importance of thecompui) the wlinrfingcr nnd Ins assis tant were required to we ir as uniform a tall black gluved hat with an inscription m yellow embla/oiied on the fiont J uri) in 1841 tlie directors endeavoured to open np a trade w Mt rctuti La) but the) were unsuccessful and received a se vero reprimand fr >ni their Bliurehol lera Moreton Bi) wa considere 1 to be a dangerous place but there w is ii further objection rinsed-that the new departure was a violation of the tlced of settlement, m asmuch ns Moreton Buy was not nilj icent to the Hunter Kiver Hie direeti is however maintained their position and resume 1 the service to Moleton 1 a) In the iulloiving year they determined to deapateli a steamer once a month to Melbourne lown but

nptlnnc. was done until lb4_ when the bluimrock Canti,,, Gilm mr was 11 iced on {"'J"1. "> Iwolold Ita) Mclbourm and Launceston lt,e steamers lnmar mil Sovereign hal ", the meantime been pur chased tor £12 000 11«. _ompm> £ " .'ros pering and it gradually exten le 1 the fiel 1 ot its operations mi 1 mere «ed the mimi or of

its licet In l8 H the bhamrock¡u I the

Sovereign beean to ni ko f ",, phil. tr,,9 to Melbourne uni M reloii Ita) rcsiecitveli

and on the 11th M ireh in ti e following year the Sovereign was wreckcl in the South l'assage with the loss of 44 lives. Mardi, 1851, marks an epoch in the hi»to-y

of the company, as it was then reconstituted. I The old as-ocialion was dissolved, and a now company formed under the title of the Aus-] trainman bteam Navigation Company, with a capital of 1.320,000. The company began ship building, and launched the first steamer constructed at its works at P. rmont, the Ballarat, m February, 1853 A proposal to amalgamate with the Sidney and Melbourne Steam Packet Company was declined, and the latter company soon afterwards became extinct. During the Indian mutiny, the com- pany voted 200 guineas to the Patriotic rund, and when the P. and O. Compiinj and the General Screw Company abandoned the postal lines between Lngland and Australia, the directors made an offer to the Melbourne and bjdney Chambers oí Commerce to carr> out the service to Singa- pore. In 1S38, when tho company's lleet numbered about 20 vessels, it entered into a mail contract with the New Zealand Government to carr} the mulls between Mel- bourne and Wellington It had Beverol losses, but it continued to prosper, and puid high dividends. Dunn*- tim New Zealand war its Bteamers were engaged in the trans- port of troops. About the sume time it opened up steam communication between Melbourne and Otago, and it had the advantugo of a great rush ot diggcis to the Otago goldfields.

The contract for carrj inn the minis between Adelaide and King George's Sound was let to the companj, and a little later a monthly service wns opened from Sydney to Nelson, Wellington, and Otago. Dividends of 10 per cent, with bonuses of from 5s to 8s. per share, «ere paid, and at the halt-}early meet- ing held in December, 1S81, £30,000 was carried from piolit and loss aecount to capita!, and the shares raised to £20 each They had previously been reduced to £15 each, owint to the loss of one fourth of the capital of the compuny in consequence of non-npphcation of depreciation of ship property. The Bteamer City of Syd ne}, Captain Moody, waa lost at Green Point on Nov ember 7,1SÜ2 , and in the following year the steamer Boomerang was stranded on tho Upper Flats at Hockhampton The Queens- land Steam Navigation Company was estab- lished in 181)3, and there was keen com- petition for the Queensland trade, freights being considerably reduced. On one hult } ear's transactions a loss of £10,000 was Bhown, and a dividend of S per cent was paid out of the Insurance Fund. The new company, however, had a chequered career. In January, -SUS, it was wound up, Its assets being sold to the AS N. Company, who soon afterwards began to pay di v mends as usual. In April, 18611, the Bteamer Cawarra, Captain Chamela, foundered at Newcastle, all hands being lost with the exception of ono man ; and in October, 1SG0, the steamer Telegraph, Captain Fitzsimmous, was wrecked oft Capo Perpendicular. Trade was opened with 1'iji, via Auckland, in December, 1809 ; and in January, 1870, the Californian mail service was undertaken b} Mr. IT II. Hall, who chartered the steamers Wonga Wonga and tile City of Melbourne from the company. The company ottered to conduet the- mail service for ten years between Sidnej and California, via Auckland, for a subsidy of £30,000 The offer was not accepted, but in September, 187*4, arrangements were con- cluded for this service with the New South Wales and New Zealand Governments In January, 1881, Captain Tiouton wus sent to England to arrange for the construction of eleven new Bteamers for the company, although ut that time no dividends were being paid. The establishment of other strong companies which entered into com- petition with it has since gradually reduced its profits. Ita more recent hiBtory ia well known. It baa suffered much from the de- pression in the shipping trade, and the announcement now mude that negotiations are in progress for the purchase ot its fleet has not caused any surprise. The company

lina continued to be rather unfortunate with regard to ita ships. Injune, 1871, the Bteamer Aucicland was lostm a fog off the Ham Head; in June, 1874, the Boomerang went ashore near King's iteef, and in August ot the same >ear the James Paterson stranded on Mast Head Reef; in May, 1875, the steamer Kungntira was totally wrecked ; in Novem- ber, 1877, the Ly-ee-moon was partly de- stroyed by lire, and in December of the same year the Florence Irving was wrecked off Port Stephens, and the Queensland stranded in Fitzroy River; and in January, 1882, the Wotonga was lost near Port Mac- quarie. Other casualties have since oc- curred, terminating with the wreck of the ill-fated Ly-ee-moon.