Endeavour famously carried James Cook on his first great voyage, visiting Pacific islands unknown to European geography, charting New Zealand and the eastern coast of Australia and almost foundering on the Great Barrier Reef. But Endeavour was a ship with many lives. She was there at the Wilkes Riots in London in 1768. During the battles for control of New York in 1776 she witnessed the bloody birth of the United States of America. As well as carrying botanists, a Polynesian priest and the remains of the first kangaroo to arrive in Britain, she transported Newcastle coal and Hessian soldiers. NASA named a space shuttle after her. To others she would be a toxic symbol, responsible for the dispossession of the oldest continuous human society and the disruption of many others.
No one has ever told Endeavour’s complete story before. Peter Moore sets out to explore the different lives of this remarkable ship, from the acorn that grew into the oak that made her, to her rich and complex legacy.
This talk is brought to you during The Portico Library's current exhibition, Entwined: Knowledge & power in the age of Captain Cook. Summer 2018 marks 250 years since James Cook set sail on a voyage of discovery considered by many to be the most significant in world history. Inspired by some of The Portico Library’s most fascinating items – first editions of Cook’s illustrated journals and the accompanying publications – we have selected and present items from the collection that expose some of the motivating ideologies and streams of thought behind the encounters of the period.