Ship History

Painting by Ted Walker, in support of the campaign to save the City of Adelaide


'City of Adelaide'

Composite clipper ship (Wooden hull over iron frames)

Built 1864, Sunderland UK to carry passengers & cargo to the city of Adelaide.
1864 - 1887 Twenty three return journeys between UK and Adelaide
1887 - 1893 Collier and North American timber trade
1893 - 1923 Isolation Hospital, Southampton
1923 - 1948 Royal Navy Drill ship. Renamed 'Carrick'
1948 - 1989 RNVR Club rooms, Scotland 1989 - 2013 Scottish Maritime Museum
2001 Adelaide campaign starts to save ship and move it to South Australia
2013 Ownership transferred to Adelaide based, volunteer, 'not for profit' organisation Clipper Ship City of Adelaide Ltd
October 2013 HRH Duke of Edinburgh officially renames ship 'City of Adelaide'
November 2013 Transported to Adelaide aboard Heavy Lift Ship ’Palanpur'
February 2014 Arrives Adelaide

It is planned to display the 'City of Adelaide' in a seaport village to be developed in Port Adelaide's inner harbour.
The social history associated with passengers and crew will be a key element of the village complex.

Thanks are extended to all who have help in so many ways to save this iconic vessel.
Particular recognition is extended to the Scottish Government and the Australian Government for their significant support.


City of Adelaide Clipper Ship

  • Constructed 1864 to carry passengers to Adelaide South Australia
  • 23 return voyages
  • One of only 2 surviving composite clipper ships
  • Pinnacle of sailing ship design
  • Most important existing historic ship in Australia
  • Returned to Adelaide in February 2014