History of the Mimosa Shipwreck – Sapphire Coast
The Mimosa Rocks National Park is named after the steamer the Mimosa struck rocks north of Aragunnu Beach. The wreck is still visible and is a favourite diving location.
Wreck Event – The Mimosa
With 38 passengers on board, The Mimosa left Merimbula, at 3pm on 18 September, 1863 bound for Sydney. The steamer struck unchartered rocks 17 Km north of Tathra and one mile offshore.
After striking the rocks the Mimosa floated free. However, the vessel was in deep trouble and began to settle by the bow. A few minutes later, Captain Keft abandoned ship, and most of the passengers, evacuated to the life boats.
The steamer quickly settled and sank as the boats pulled away.
Two of the steerage passengers, Mr and Mrs Ivell, were unaccounted for. Their bodies were recovered a few weeks later.
The owners of the boat the Illawarra Steamers Navigation Company attempted to raise the steamer, however with little success. The hole in the rear was too large and subsequent sand had entered the haul, making recovery impossible.
The Mimosa Wreck Location – Latitude 36o 34′ 58.6″ S Longitude 150o03′ 27.2″ E
Historical Significance – is one of the earliest paddle steam shipwrecks to have been located
on the NSW south coast, contains one of the earliest located marine engines in NSW. Tthe vessel played an important role in the development of trade on the NSW south coast. The site retains the potential for retention of mid nineteenth century personal, nautical and trade items within the vessel’s remains. The Mimosa’s engine is an early example of a marine trunk engine.