George Forsyth: A steady hand in the turbulence of colonial Western Australia

Released in March 2019, this biography of the first Harbour Master for the whole Colony of Western Australia (other than Albany) is the story of George Forsyth’s continual battle to establish a safer maritime environment along the colony’s treacherous coastline.

The book contains reproductions of George Forsyth’s maritime paintings and a foreword by the Hon Kerry Sanderson AC, former Governor of Western Australia and CEO of the Fremantle Port Authority.

The story of George Forsyth is the story of the emerging colony itself in the mid to late nineteenth century, when self-interested politicians and administrators resisted George’s calls to establish safer maritime infrastructure and better conditions for the men who worked at sea and in the ports.

Cropped from a painting by Captain George Forsyth dated 1/7/88 (Courtesy National Trust of Western Australia, SH84.1065)

ISBN: 978-0-9944304-1-0
240 mm x 165mm
c. 270 pages
$29.00 + $11.55 postage (within Australia)

A Hazardous Life was published by the Maritime Heritage Association Inc as part of its mission to promote knowledge and appreciation of Western Australia’s maritime heritage.

“George seems to have been hounded from his role as Harbour Master and head of the Department of Harbour and Light in what almost looks like a conspiracy of a few prominent citizens.”

….Hon Kerry Sanderson AC, Former Governor of Western Australia and CEO of the Fremantle Port Authority.

Harbourmaster George Forsyth c. 1874