Section of pump shaft, from well built to supply water to military garrison in Sydney in 1828-9, constructed under supervision of John Busby, hardwood timber, excavated in 1927 from Wynyard Square, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, during construction of city railway

Made in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1823-1830.

This piece of timber relates to the early supply of drinking water in Sydney during the late 1820s. It is part of the shaft for a spear pump built into a well to supply water for the early colonial military barracks originally located on the site of today’s Wynyard Park. The type of pump may have been similar to those used in England to pump water out of mines at the time.

While the mining engineer, John Busby, was constructing the tunnel (later known as Busby’s Bore) to supply Sydney with a p...

Summary

Object No.

87/283

Physical Description

Section of pump shaft, from well built to supply water to military garrison in Sydney in 1828-9, constructed under supervision of John Busby, hardwood timber, excavated in 1927 from Wynyard Square, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, during construction of city railway

Dimensions

Height

35 mm

Width

220 mm

Depth

214 mm

Production

Notes

According to a contemporary article in "The Sydney Morning Herald" in 1927 when the pipes were unearthed, "the pump consisted of a set of these wooden pipes drilled four and a half inches in diameter in the pump chamber and discharging ends. At the suction end of the pipe, the diameter was three and a half inches, gradually increasing over a length of six feet to four and half inches where the clack valve of leather and lead was introduced. Above this was the cylinder chamber carrying the pump bucket and operating shaft or "spear'.

Portions of theses clack valves and pump bucket were dug out of the old pipe [or shaft] and reconstructed. These showed very good workmanship indeed and our illustration made from the reconstructed parts indicates a very good type of mining "spear pump". [This illustration is now in the collection the NSW Government State Records & Archives and is entitled 'Drawing of Old Spear Pump. Dug out of Excavation in Wynyard Park Site of Old Military Barracks - pump constructed under direction of Mr. Busby in 1828']. The barrels of the foot valve and lifting bucket had been turned with half round recesses for the necessary packing.

Portions of the lifting shaft or "spear" were also discovered and reconstructed. They consisted of pieces of shaped pine, neatly fitted together and secured with iron bands. The attachments at the top, and also to the pump bucket, could not be found, but the drawing illustrates what was the possible general arrangement.

The method of lifting the bucket is not disclosed in the records, but possibly a lever or crank arrangement was adopted.

Short sections of the old wood piping were cut and dressed at the ends to show the central bore and the grain of the timber, which was in a remarkable state of preservation, providing a good advertisement as to the durability of Australian hardwood."

JOHN BUSBY. (1927, July 26).'The Sydney Morning Herald' p. 10. Retrieved from Trove, February 8, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article16392330

Made

1823-1830

History

Notes

David Sillence, Professor of Public Health Biology at the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine from the University of Sydney, found this item while sorting out old boxes at the School in February 1987. He donated it to the Museum in 1987.

Source

Credit Line

Gift of School Of Public Health And Tropical Medicine, University Of Sydney, 1987

Acquisition Date

17 March 1987

Cite this Object

Harvard

Section of pump shaft, from well built to supply water to military garrison in Sydney in 1828-9, constructed under supervision of John Busby, hardwood timber, excavated in 1927 from Wynyard Square, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, during construction of city railway 2018, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 19 November 2018, <https://ma.as/75070>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/75070 |title=Section of pump shaft, from well built to supply water to military garrison in Sydney in 1828-9, constructed under supervision of John Busby, hardwood timber, excavated in 1927 from Wynyard Square, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, during construction of city railway |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=19 November 2018 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}
This object is currently on display in The Steam Revolution at the Powerhouse Museum.

Incomplete

This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.

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