A Comprehensive History of Australian Rowing
Find out who rowed in events and the results they achieved. Read about selection and racing issues. See the trends and growth in rowing in Australia.
Index to this History
About This History
Australians in International Events
- Olympic Games
- World Championships
- Commonwealth Games
- World Professional Sculling
- World Junior Championships
- World Rowing U23 Championships
- Trans Tasman Series
- 1919 Royal Henley Peace Regatta
- Australian Rowers at Henley Royal Regatta
- The Boat Race
- World University Championships
- Australian Crews in Other Events
Australian Rowing Associations
Rowing Club Histories
- Adelaide RC
- Antwerp RC
- Balmain Working Men's RC
- Barwon RC
- Begonia City Ladies RC
- Bendigo RC
- Bundaberg RC
- City of Warrnambool RC
- Corowa RC
- Dimboola RC
- Endeavour RC
- Essendon Ladies RC
- Essendon RC
- Fremantle RC
- Heidelberg City RC
- Horsham RC
- Jeparit RC
- Lake Colac RC
- Leichhardt RC
- Melbourne RC
- Melbourne University BC
- Mercantile RC
- Newcastle RC
- Power House RC
- Preston RC
- Richmond RC
- Sydney RC
- Torrens RC
- Yea RC
- Y Rowing Club
Profiles & Significant Events
Other Histories to Come
- Boat builders Of Australia
News & Latest Additions
September and October 2023
No new chapters were added last month but as usual there were plenty of updates to existing and of course rower profiles added.
The images for 1991 National Championships are currently being added to www.australianrowingimages.com site.
This month the site largely spent time filling in gaps in past events. Fortunately, readers continue to send in additions/corrections which are greatly appreciated. Please continue this important work. Whilst the focus was on updating various parts of the site, some important additions were made.
Kate Elliott continued her prodigious rowing history output with the Begonia City Ladies Rowing Club history. This short lived club merged with Ballarat City Rowing Club with the amalgamation of the men's and women's rowing associations in the late 1970s. It is also a personal story for Kate as through this club, she joined the sport, learnt her rowing craft and even met her husband. Beyond the specific story of this Club, Kate has also provides insights into women's rowing in Ballarat and beyond. Typical of her style, it is thoroughly illustrated with newspaper articles and images to enhance the readers comprehension of the period. It is another important thread in our sport's rich historical tapestry.
We also have added as a document, the Y Rowing Club 1965–2005 history, an updated history to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the rebirth of the YWCA Rowing Club. This history has been reproduced with the permission of the Club and provides a great insight into the rebirth of the historic YWCA Rowing Club and its evolution into the currently named Y Rowing Club. Not only does it cover the history of this club, but it also provides background to the growth of women's rowing in Victoria. Yet another important historical thread in our rich rowing history.
July was a momentous month for this site with the last of the chapters, the Interstate Championships, migrated over this site. This has been a significant task made possible by the superb work of web designer Hope Stewart. Thank you Hope.
Whilst this work dominated our endeavours this month, updates to other chapters continued including to the Interstate Championships, Under 23 World Championships, Rower Profiles, and school regattas. Access to Sydney High School records have been very helpful in filling gaps in many early GPS regatta results and this work continues. More on this next month. Finally, more historical photos are being added to the Australian Rowing Images website regularly. This is becoming another important historical source.
June was another productive month for the Australian Rowing History website.
Readers responded well to the revised chapters on Australians in The Boat Race and the World University competitions with more information. These chapters have been enhanced by these important contributions.
The big news this month has been the addition of a new chapter on senior Australian teams who have been selected in Other International Competitions, not otherwise covered on the site. This long overdue chapter covers captures events regarded as the pinnacle event that year for that division. For example, when the World Championships were not conducted annually, (or in case of women’s rowing, pre 1974 before they had World Championship status), the European Championships which were the de facto World Championships in those years, with an excellent depth of field and holding FISA Continental Championship status. Similarly we wanted to capture Canadian Henley regattas for lightweight women before FISA created championships status for that division in 1985. These are all important Australian senior crews. Other events have also been included. There are bound to be gaps and reader assistance would again be welcomed.
Finally, Rower Profiles have broken the 1,600 barrier and this chapter continues to be by far the most popular part of the site. Again reader contributions and enhancements are welcomed.
Another busy month on the Australian Rowing History website.
The migration from the old site to the new site continued with the remainder of the international events coming across during May. We took this opportunity to update both the World University Championships and the Australians in The Boat Race chapters. The latter is an ongoing project as we are also adding rowing profiles of those involved. The only chapter now remaining on the old site is the Interstate Championships and work has commenced to bring it across. Again, thank you to our web designer Hope Stewart for her invaluable work on the migrations. Her skill and expertise are making this massive job achievable, and the end result, superb.
Thank you to those providing information for the new SA Schools Head of the River chapter which is beginning to take shape. Other results and information were added as usual, as were many rower profiles. Thank you to readers who initiated many of these changes with their suggestions.
April was a big month for updates to the international pages with the big task being the transfer of the World Under 23 Championships from the old site to the main site. Thank you to Hope Stewart our web designer for her great work on this project. It is no small task.
As always, more rower profiles have been added and readers have provided additions throughout the site. Thank you.
Work has commenced on the South Australian Schools Regatta and copies of results and programs are welcomed.
February and March 2023
Not only have February and March been busy months on the water, they have also been so on the history websites. The number of rower profiles now exceed 1500 and many chapters are being updated with not only 2023 results, but also past results as they have become available. We continue to receive updates on a daily basis from helpful members of the rowing community. This helps the depth and breadth of the site. The online museum grows with documents added regularly. For example in March, the annual reports of the Mercantile Rowing Club were added.
Finally the Australian Rowing Images website galleries grow with both historical and current galleries added monthly. Specifically on current regattas, the 2023 Australian Championships, Australian Henley, APS Heads of the River and Head of the Schoolgirls regattas are added.
January 2023 was a busy month for the site with numerous additions. The focus this month were pioneers of the sport in Queensland and Victoria. Nearly 100 new rowing profiles were added in the month including more members of the famous early boatbuilding family of James Edwards. James Edwards was an early Melbourne boatbuilder whose business grew to national prominence in the nineteenth century and continued through into the twentieth century with the next generation. Prominent amongst the seven sons are champion professional sculler and the leader of the Edwards brothers, Robert Edwards, and coach Syd Edwards. Of varying rowing success were the other brothers, Charles Edwards, Herbert Edwards, Fred Edwards, Arthur Edwards, and Frank Edwards. A 1930s newspaper article is republished in the profile of the Edwards Family. Rower and Ballarat historian Kate Elliott has kindly volunteered to update the Ballarat Head of the Lake with the first 20 years completed. 2022 results continue to be added to the site including the National Championships, and plenty of other updates provided by readers included.
There has been much undertaken since previous reports, specifically many new rower profiles have been added. The work of Steve Roll is highlighted as he has toiled away providing rower details with fully documented references to assist those who follow the present authors. Whilst many more profiles are yet to be added, over 1400 have now been published.
Again there has been much activity this month adding images to the partner site to this Australian Rowing History website, namely the Australian Rowing Images website. Whilst still under construction, there are already about 30,000 images already loaded with many more being added weekly.
Back to this website, more items have been added to the online museum this month including the commencement of adding copies of Australian Rowing Championship programs. This is a big but important project. These historic artefacts tell an important story and need to be made available to the Australian rowing public.