Monument Plaques & Visits

Inscriptions and Plaques on the Pedestal of the Monument commemorating the visits of French Naval Officers

 Compiled by Peter Orlovich


Vessel, Inscription and Remarks

Western Face of Monument


Foundation Laid in 1826Completed in 1828
Eastern Face of Monument


Le Fondement en 1826Eleve en 1828
Visits by French Naval Officers to the Laperouse Monuments on the north shore of Botany Bay.

March 1824

Corvette La Coquille. [Commander Duperrey].

26 August 1825

Frigate Thetis [Commander Baron de Bougainville] and Corvette L’Esperance [Captain Du Campier].The Frigate Thetis and the Corvette L’Esperance arrived in Sydney on the 30th June, 1825. Commander Bougainville wrote that “I went with MM de La Touanne and de Boissieu, accompanied by Captain Piper, on the 26 August, 1825, on a pilgrimage to the French camping place – the recollection of which is preserved in the name of the FrenchGarden. Some days later, [7 September, 1825] I laid the foundation stone in the presence of the ships officers and two English Officers instructed by Sir Thomas Brisbane to attend the ceremony.”See also Sydney Gazette, Thursday 8 September, 1825, p.3a.

12 December 1838

Venus [Commander A Du Petit Thouars]. Captain Petit Thouars, who arrived in Sydney about two weeks previously, visited the Laperouse monument in company with J.H. Plunkett, Attorney General; C. Deas Thomson, Colonial Secretary; and Mr. Therry, Assistant Public Prosecutor.

14 September 1879

French Warship Rhin [Captain Mathieu]. On Sunday 14 September 1879, the Franciscan Fathers celebrated Mass is a marquee beside the grave of Pere Receveur, which ceremony was attended by Captain Mathieu, officers and men of the French Warship Rhin. [See Sydney Morning Herald, 13th September, 1879, p. 5c and Sydney Morning Herald 14th September, 1879. See also Illustrated Sydney News, 4th October, 1879, p. 6b and p.21 for a sketch of the Mass at La Perouse.



La BruatA Laperouse Et a Ses Compagnons. 1884


April 1901

La Zelee




Janvier 1903

Croiseur Protet


Mars 1903

Aviso Transport Meurthe


Aout 1904

Le Protet





1906 [?]



Mars 1910 [?]

La Zelee


Janvier  1911






4 Mai 1915

1er Contingent De Nouvelle Caledonie Et Colonies Du Pacifique Partant Pour Le Guerre. 4 Mai 1915 E.T.


14 July 1917

On Bastille Day, 1917, the Hon. David Storey, M.L.A., a member of the Holman Government, announced that the New South Wales Government intended to dedicate a portion of the land, approximately 1 acre, permanently to the French nation and the French people, so that it might be kept sacred to their memory for ever.At a separate public meeting on the same day, Mr J. Garland, M.L.C., Minister for Justice and Solicitor General , announced that the Government of New South Wales had decided to make a gift to the French people, in perpetuity, of the piece of land at Botany Bay, where Laperouse landed. [Sydney Morning Herald, 16 July, 1917].


11 September 1918

Le General Pau. Et La Mission Francaise en Australie.[For a report on this visit, See Sydney Morning Herald, Thursday 12 September, 1918, p.7h.

“French Mission.

Sight-seeing in Sydney.

La Perouse Visited.

Picturesque Scene.”

The abovementioned report refers also to Wesley Simms, who provided a demonstration of boomerang throwing for Commandant d’Andre and Marcel Mathieu, and presented two boomerangs to the party “as a souvenir of their pilgrimage to La Perouse.”





11 Janvier 1923

Jules Michelet et Vitor Hugo. Amiral Gilly. Officer d’Equippages de la division…[?]For a report on this visit, see Sydney Morning Herald, Friday 12 January, 1923, p.6.

“At La Perouse.

Frenchmen’s Tribute.

Tablet Placed on the Monument.”

“Two tram-loads of officers and sailors, to the number of about 150, from the Jules Michelet and the Victor Hugo, yesterday visited La Perouse at the invitation of the New South Wales Government. Mr. J.S. Cormack, director of the Tourist Bureau represented the Government.

Lieutenant-Commander Coiffic, on behalf of his brother officers and the sailors, tendered his hearty thanks to the Government for providing an opportunity to visit La Perouse. Addressing his compatriots in French, he informed them that he would unveil a brass plate (which was inserted in the plinth of the monument, and on which was inscribed a brief record of the visit) in honour of the Comte de la Perouse.

The visitors witnessed an exhibition of boomerang–throwing by aborigines from the settlement. Some of the French officers essayed to imitate the natives, but were not successful.”


14 Juilet 1925



September 1929

Croiseur Tourville


Sunday 23 Mars 1930

M.M. Raoubot Eridan



27 Mars 1930

MM Raoubot EridanPlaque affixed Thursday 27 Mars 1930See Sydney Morning Herald Friday 28 March 1930, p. 14b (photograph), p. 16c (Text)


Janviet 1931

Be Patrix


29 December, 1933


5 November 1937


15 January, 1943

Temporary Reservation from Sale of Monument SitesAn area of eight (8) acres was reserved temporarily from sale and lease for public recreation, incorporating the LaperouseMonument and Pere Receveur’s grave. [New South Wales Government Gazette, No. 218, 29 December, 1933, p. 4609; New South Wales Government Gazette, No. 165, 5 November, 1937, p. 4481; New South Wales Government Gazette, No. 8, 15 January, 1943, p. 107.]


1934 – 19[36?]

Aviso Amiral Charner. Stationaire du Pacifique.


Fevrier 1938

Jeanne d’Arc


Fevrier 1938 [?]

Rigault De Gen [Three plaques]


Dec. 19[?]

Rigault De Gen



Vessel, Inscription and Remarks



Mars 1940

Dumont D’Urville


5 Juin 1941

Le Ler Contingent du Corps Expeditionaire des Forces Navales Francaises Libres Du Pacifique Sydney


27 November 1941

Le Chevreuil [and] le Triomphant Forces Navales Francaises Libres.


Juillet 1944

Savorgnan de Brazza


19 Mai 1945

Croiseur Auxiliaire Cap Des Palmes


15 December 1948

Patrouilleur Lotus


Fevrier 1956

Jeanne d’Arc


September 195[?]

Novice Le Maou. Le Navale Des Patrole Botany Bay. Sep. 195[?].


12 January 1958

French Tanker Astrolabe


Mars 1958

La Confiance


25 June 1960

Aviso La Capricieuse


18 May 1961

Aviso La Capricieuse


20 Fevrier 1962

Ecole D’Application Des Enseignes De Vaisseau Jeanne D’Arc [and] Victor Schoelcher


18 April 1962

Aviso La Capricieuse


7 Janvier 1965

Porte Helicoptres Jeanne D’Arc


28 Mars 1969

Aviso Escorteur Commondant Riviere


14 Janvier 1972

Groupe Ecole D’Application De La Marine Francaise.


25 Janvier 1977

Porte Helicopteres Jeanne D’Arc.


Plaques of Unidentified Date in the above List


4 Mai 1915

1er Contingent De Nouvelle Caledonie Et Colonies Du Pacifique Partant Pour Le Guerre. 4 Mai 1915 E.T.



Aviso-Escorteur Victor Schelcher [North face of pedestal]



Evidence of space for detached plaque [North face of pedestal]



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