Sir William Rooke Creswell and the Foundation of the Australian Navy
The six Australian colonies united on 1st January 1901 to become the Commonwealth of Australia. One of the reasons given for this federation was that the Commonwealth could provide a common defence.William Rooke Creswell argued that, as an island continent, Australia could not defend itself without a navy. He saw no point in having a 70,000 strong army if only one enemy battleship could destroy port cities and disrupt maritime trade and sea communications.Creswell was not alone in his campaign to establish a navy for Australia but he was the one constant advocate throughout the years from his first proposals on a navy for Australia in 1886 to when the first ships of the Australian Fleet sailed into Sydney Harbour in October 1913.
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