The Furneaux Museum is located on Flinders Island, Tasmania. Flinders Island is the largest in the Furneaux Group of islands in eastern Bass Strait.
The Furneaux Museum is devoted to the preservation and display of the history of the region. It is not widely known that events occurred in the Furneaux Islands which influenced the course of Australia's early colonial history.
These islands were the site of the first European settlement outside of Sydney, when sealers set themselves up on Cape Barren Island in 1798. Matthew Flinders had reported the abundance of seals after he visited these then-unknown waters on a rescue voyage following a shipwreck in 1797. His reports led to the start of Australia's first export industry, seal skins, and thus to the survival of Tasmania's indigenous population - descendants of the sealers and their Aboriginal wives. The same voyage led Flinders to suspect the existence of Bass Strait. He later returned to prove it.
Visit us to discover the events and people that have shaped the islands - shipwrecks, the ill-fated 1833-47 Tasmanian Aboriginal settlement at Wybalenna, pioneering life, mutton-birding, soldier settlement, island families. See how isolation brought about a resourcefulness and strong community spirit which still exist today.
Here's what our visitors say:
- A great surprise!
- Top little museum - well laid out and very informative.
- A must-do on Flinders Island.
- Give yourself at least 2 - 3 hours.
- A wonderful insight into the life and history of Flinders Island.