Title Details

Pearlers of the Coral Sea

Looks at pearl diving around Thursday Island in the Torres Strait and off the coast of Broome, Western Australia.
Series : Australia Presents | Year : 1960 | Total Duration : 16 Minutes | Producer : Frank Bagnall
Director : Frank Bagnall |
Blue harbour of Thursday Island, houses on main island and view to other islands. Pearling fleet moored at harbour. Islanders attending to pearling luggers. Lugger at sea, diver being fitted with large metal diving helmet being lowered into sea. Tender holding lifeline on board boat.
Access No. 138594 | 1 min 27 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
MS of bubbles and foam on sea where pearl diver has dropped. MS tender holding lifeline on board boat and other crew watching. WS lugger at sea. MS tender hauling up diver by lifeline and helping diver aboard. CUs to nets holding oyster shells being lifted onto boat. VS of lugger Cessa sailing with two of it's potential three sails.
Access No. 138595 | 1 min 16 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
VS of Broome pearlers sailing the Indian Ocean. VS of diver being dressed for dive in full suit, helmet, courselette and boots then having weights attached to him to counterbalance buoyancy suit as he prepares to submerge. VS of tender sitting on outside of outrigger with lifeline and air hose. VS of a second diver preparing to submerge with a second tender attending to him.
Access No. 138596 | 1 min 42 secs | 1960s | Broome, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
Various underwater shots of the diver sinking in water and the divers walking on ocean floor gathering oyster shells 100 metres deep. Various GS to tenders watching the divers from above. WS of whale passing by just visible above water surface.
Access No. 138597 | 51 secs | 1960s | Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
Thursday Island, the capital of the Torres Strait Islands. Grand house amidst fenced gardens, children riding bicycles along dirt roads and older style timber house with two-tone FJ Holden car parked out in front as family walks towards it. Thursday Island Post Office sign on gable of building and family walking into it.
Access No. 138598 | 1 min 14 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
Children playing with ball and of girls skipping rope held at either end. Thursday Islands on luggers moored in the bay. Torres Strait group with men fishing with long spears with palm trees on beach behind them and man getting out of row boat with turtle catch. Woman walking through palm forest on a path holding small girl's hand and family on deck of stilt house greeting them as they arrive
Access No. 138599 | 1 min 28 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
WS pearlers at sea beyond tidal mud flats. High angle CU of boat cutting through water below ropes on pearler and tilt to crew up rope ladder. VS of crew, most smoking. VS of activities with diver putting on flannel vest and lookout on rope ladder signalling that he's sighted the buoy marking good patch of shell. VS of divers going into water, underwater shots of deep descent and of crew watching and attending divers.
Access No. 138600 | 1 min 27 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
GS of pearl diver on bottom of ocean floor walking around collecting and depositing oyster shells in net. GS shark. MS bubbles appearing on flat ocean surface and crew on luggers hauling up bags of shell on diver's signal and sending more down. MS tender slowly hoisting diver from sea. Tender attaching buoy to lifeline as part of the acclimatisation process the diver must go through before surfacing. VS tender and WS lugger at sea.
Access No. 138601 | 3 mins 10 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
MS divers on deck of pearl lugger drinking hot drink and waiting while tender signals current diver until he is ready to be raised. VS of cook preparing hot drink for diver, crew cleaning pearl shells and divers fastening their flannel shirts. VS of diver preparing to rise and tender hauling lifeline. WS divers being helped from water. Purl lugger sailing away from camera with reflection in it's wake and VS shell being lifted off boat onto land with pulleys.
Access No. 138602 | 2 mins 35 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |
Pearling lugger arriving in Thursday Island with 22 tonnes of shell.Deck of boat with rigging hung with oyster flesh cut from shells and shells lining deck. Men hauling sacks of shell off boat to shore. Thursday Island looking to sea with islands in distance.
Access No. 138603 | 57 secs | 1960s | Thursday Island, Australia | © NFSA | Colour |