Sir W.J.L. Wharton
Very rare, first issue of this Admiralty chart of Esperance, Western Australia surveyed by Commander J.W. Combe, R.N., assisted by the Officers of H.M. Surveying Ship Waterwitch, 1897. The ship Waterwitch had been converted for use as a survey vessel, which included replacing her engines and boilers to provide 450 horsepower. She was commissioned in 1894 for service on the Australia Station. One of her first surveys was of lines of soundings in Esperance Bay.
Royal Museums Greenwich: G262:11/23
The regular updating of Hydrographic charts by the Hydrographic Office was to ensure that commanders of ships, pilots and other mariners were able to have the most to up to date information available to safely navigate foreign waters and ports as new information of changes to sea depths, sand bars, wrecks or other any other pertinent nautical information that could hinder passage became available. As updated charts were offered for sale, the earlier outdated charts in the hands of mariners, pilots, ships owners and sailors were invariably discarded, subsequently making all British Admiralty issued hydrographic charts of the period rare.
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