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 Avast! Me Maties!

To celebrate International Talk like a Pirate Day on Monday, 19 September, we thought we’d share some pirate related objects from our collection and also let you know how you can get involved on the day.

Pirate hat used by Poncho and Bubbles.

Pirate hat used by Poncho and Bubbles. Maker: Marcelle Rosa Tanner OAM and Harold Tanner.

This pirate hat was worn by Harold Tanner and Marcelle Rose as part of their stage show performance as Poncho and Bubbles the clowns. Poncho and Bubbles were clowns who worked on cruise ships for almost 20 years. From the 1970s cruise lines such as Sitmar and P&O pitched their cruises as affordable family fun. Professional staff, activities and entertainers were provided for children, leaving parents free to relax. Poncho and Bubbles are one of the longest running clown shows in Australia (1976-1995).

‘Blow on, Blow on, The Pirates Glee’ was written for and dedicated to the Salem Glee Club, a men’s choir. The cover features a black and white lithograph by Benjamin W Thayer, titled ‘Storm at Sea in a Schooner’ depicting six pirates on the stern of a vessel as it encounters rough seas. The piece was written to be sung by four male voices.

Blow on Blow on and Dead Mans Isle

Left: Sheet music, Blow On! Blow On! The Pirate's Glee. Composer: Arthur Morrill. Right: Dead Man's Isle by Scott Hedley. 1933.

Dead Man’s Isle was first published in 1932 in The Ranger. This blood-stirring tale of the Spanish Main by Hedley Scott was then published in The Boys’ Friend Librarythe following year. The issue is conveniently pocket-sized and in 95 pages follows the hero, Langley Morgensen, on his adventures as he seeks a lonely, uncharted speck in tropical seas – an isle that holds the secret of a buccaneer’s treasure.

Be a part of Talk Like a Pirate Day! Come along to the museum or join us online.

Sunday 18 September

Kids on Deck: Pirates!

Decorate a pirate hat, and make a bandanna, a treasure chest or a mermaid shadow puppet.
Hourly sessions, 11.00 am – 3.00 pm. Ages 5-12 yrs. $7 per child.

Monday 19 September


Puppet theatre show about Captain William Dampier.
11am, 12.15pm, 1.30pm. Ages 5 and above. All tickets $7.

Afterhours at the museum for kids
Swashbuckled! Duyfken and treasure hunt
5.15 pm – 7.30 pm. Ages 5-12 yrs. $35/$25 Members.

Get your pirate speak ready for a day of online chatter with resident pirate Grognose Johnny! Join us on Facebook and Twitter, use #Talklikeapirateday

Learn all you need to know about  International Talk Like a Pirate Day on the official website.