Settlement of Fremantle

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    Settlement of Fremantle

  • Beginning of Fremantle

    Beginning of Fremantle
    The ship, HMS Challenger, arrived near the coast of the estuary of the Swan River. Shortly after, Captain James Stirling arrived to begin the Swan River colony in Perth. Captain Stirling was the one who named this settlement "Fremantle" after the captain of the HMS Challenger, Captain Fremantle. Captain Stirling determined the Swan River Colony as a free settlement. The settlement started with approximately four hundred settlers who chose to migrate there by choice.
  • Struggles of the Settlers (continued)

    Struggles of the Settlers (continued)
    The issue of fertility provoked another problem to occur. Many people migrated to other places and this was a crisis as manpower was essential to the development of the colony such as crucial communication, transport and administrative structures.
  • Struggles of the Settlers

    Struggles of the Settlers
    There were approximately fifteen hundred people in the colony by 1832, however the first 20-30 years of the new colony proved to causes struggles and difficulty for the new settlers. The problem was the fertility of the area. The Swan River was a barren, flat area covered in sand. There was also some vegetation, however it was difficult to clear it. Even once it had been cleared the sand wasn't suitable for growing new vegetation and crops for food.
  • Conversion into a Penal Colony

    Conversion into a Penal Colony
    The status of the Swan River colony being a free settlement ended in 1849. It was declared as a penal colony and convicts were transported to Australia. This conversion of a free colony into a penal colony was done because it was believed that it would increase the speed of the colony's economic growth.
  • Increase of Economic Growth

    Increase of Economic Growth
    The alteration from a free colony to a penal colony did help impact the colony's economic growth. For example, the railway going from Perth to Fremantle was built in the year 1881. Some other utilities and buildings included the Literary Institute, the Town Hall and the installment of gas street lamps. 
  • The Gold Rush

    The Gold Rush
    Throughout the 1890's, gold was discovered in the area and this brought prospectors and miners searching for gold. This increased agricultural production and created great extents of wealth. The gold rush also had an impact on the economic growth as it brought many new businesses to the port and many people that were willing to immigrate there to work.
  • The Fremantle Port

    The Fremantle Port
    Before the Fremanlte Harbour was built, exports into the Swan River colony had to be collected from the "Long Jetty" which was 1 kilometre long. However, sailors disliked this jetty as it was very unsuitable for large ships. Captain Shaw, the captain of the Sarnac, described the jetty as having "no place to put a vessel" and "no shelter whatsoever". There were many attempts to convince the colony raise money to build an outer harbour, however they would not negotiate.
  • The Fremantle Port (continued)

    The Fremantle Port (continued)
    Only until the gold rush occurred did the Parliament realise that a port was crucial and accepted the plan to build an inner harbour in the mouth of the Swan River. In late 1892, work on constructing the harbour began and on May 4 1987, the inner harbour was launched.