Where our stories live!

Wallawani! In This Together

Founded in 1996 to celebrate Indigenous history and culture in Australia and foster reconciliation, we mark National Reconciliation Week running annually from 27 May - 3 June. These dates commemorate two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey.

Firstly, in May 1967, after 10 years of campaigning, a referendum on Indigenous recognition in the Australian constitution was held. The lead-up to the poll focused public attention on the fact that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders were treated as second-class citizens. Nearly 91 per cent of the electorate voted to amend the constitution.

Secondly, the High Court Mabo decision which was a turning point for the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ rights, because it acknowledged their unique connection with the land. It also led to the Australian Parliament passing the Native Title Act in 1993.

We have received mayoral funding to establish a ‘welcome to country’ video in language by Uncle Les Simon, which will feature at the entrance to our Museum 

No.1 in a series marking the 250th anniversary of Lt James Cook aboard the ‘Endeavour’, charting the south coast of New Holland’ (Australia) in 1770.

How do you keep fruit fresh on a sailing ship at sea for months at a time? You couldn’t.

Sailors in the ‘Age of Sail’ lost their lives not just to the elements, nor in battle, but to a simple lack of Vitamin C. The reason was unrecognised at the time, only the horrible results – Scurvy. Responsible for an estimated two million deaths between 1500 and 1800 this was the invisible killer on sailing ships around the world. And it was not an easy death, with contemporary reports of blackened skin, rictus of the limbs and gum tissue sprouting out of the mouth which rotted and smelt foul.

With no real cure available, the British crown outfitted four captains during the 1760s with various potential cures to find a reliable method to prevent scurvy through trial and error.

Captain James Cook, one of the four captains, was given several different experimental foods to try aboard his ship the HM Bark Endeavor when he left England for the South Pacific in 1768. Among them, as noted in the victualing minutes — the log of provisions put aboard — was 7,860 pounds of sauerkraut.

Made by fermenting thinly sliced cabbage in its own natural juices, sauerkraut is rich in vitamin C, and the process of fermentation increases these levels.

Three years after leaving England with his store of Sour Kroutt and with not a single death attributed to scurvy, Cook returned home to report his findings.

Sour Kroutt (Sauerkraut)
Makes: 4 (or 1L) jars

  • 2 white cabbages, quartered or one white, one red
  • 1 handful salt
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 small handful caraway seeds (optional)
  1. Remove and discard the core of the cabbages, then finely slice. In a large bowl, mix some salt with half of the sliced cabbage. Massage and squeeze for several minutes until the cabbage softens, it will be quite moist. Repeat with the remaining cabbage. Set bowl of cabbage aside overnight at room temperature.
  2. The next day, peel and grate the carrots and mix in with cabbage. Add caraway seeds if desired. Squeeze out excess liquid and discard the liquid.
  3. Transfer the cabbage to sterilised jars (1L jars are ideal). Wipe the rims with a clean cloth, then screw on lids. Store in a cool, dark place set over a towel, as the jars may leak during the fermentation process.
  4. Ferment for 2 to 3 weeks, to taste. Once sauerkraut is ready, store jars in the fridge to slow the fermentation process. * Sauerkraut will keep in the fridge for several months. Which is why it proved ideal for Captain Cook’s crew . *http://allrecipes.com.au/recipe/30336/homemade-sauerkraut.aspx  =====================================================================

Dear Friends, Followers and Visitors

Due to the risks imposed by the spread of Covid 19, we have put in place precautionary measures for the health and safety of our community and volunteer staff.


The Museum will be closed to the public from March 23 due to COVID-19. It will not reopen until the Government advises that it is safe to do so.  Accordingly, the previously anticipated Opening Date of May 5 no longer applies.  Thank you for your understanding.

Our events to publicise Cook250 will, regretfully, need to be cancelled.

But next year we celebrate 200 years for the European exploration and naming of the Clyde – so maritime stories continue.

Our volunteers will still be working behind the scenes for the next few months, taking this opportunity to refresh our displays and develop a new program of exciting events.

Pleas follow us on Facebook and visit our website, to keep updated with our program.


Some extracts from our Visitors Books:

10/3/20 – G. Beechran – "Displays very clear, clean and well arranged. Great variety"

20/2/20 – Sydney – "A great museum!"

12/11/19 – Mal & Wendy – "Most interesting collection - great effort."

8/10/19 – James Hall – "A lot of devotion and hard work is evident here - thanks"

2/10/19 – Pauline Foster – "I think it has been a very good experience to see all this history."

12/9/19 – Bonnie MacKinnon – "Everything brought back memories."

If you have a Facebook account, please do not forget to click the Facebook Like button below.   If you do not have an account, you can still view our Facebook Page by simply clicking on 'Batemans Bay Heritage Museum' below.  Enjoy your visit and we look forward to receiving your comments.

Do you love the natural beauty of the Eurobodalla area?  Then check out the links below:
Revised Opening Hours

 Please refer to the panel at right entitled
'Dear Friends, Followers and Visitors'.

As the rest of us turn to a range of remedies, our grateful thanks to all those committed to securing the welfare of the greater community.

The 2020 version of this popular event is up and running now.  Elgas is donating up to $12000 to local community, volunteer and sporting groups.   With your support, the Museum could receive anything from $250 to $1000, to be used for various projects.

Voting will be open from 3pm this Friday 29th May until 12pm 15th June, with the winners announced on the Radio 2EC Breakfast Show on 16th June 2020.  You can place your votes (no limit) for the Museum by simply clicking on the BLUE link button below and following the instructions.  


Book Emporium Opening Hours  

The following revised procedures will apply with immediate effect, during the Covid 19 Crisis:

  • Both bookshops will open from 10.00am until 3.00pm every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, beginning Tuesday 26th May 2020;
  • Entry to either bookshops will be via the rear gate of the Museum compound (by entrance to the Water Gardens);
  • Payments for books purchased can be made at the Museum Office back door, close to the rear gate; and
  •  The Museum grounds are closed to the public until further notice.


Accessible Toilets
Research Library
Reading Room
Kid's Space

Please Note:  The CLYDE RIVER & BATEMANS BAY HISTORICAL SOCIETY INC is endorsed as a Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) from 01 Jul 2000. It is covered by Items 1 & 4 of the table in section 30-15 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997


The Historical Society acknowledges Aboriginal people as the traditional custodians of the land on which we work and live, and offers our respect to Elders, past, present and future.