HMS Supply (1759)

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Lt. Henry Lidgbird Ball, Commander of the Supply

The third HMS Supply was a Royal Navy armed tender launched in 1759 which played an important part in the foundation of Australia.

Oldest and smallest of the First Fleet ships, she was built in 1759 as an armed trader, of 175 tons, and had carried naval supplies between the Thames and Channel ports for 27 years. She left Portsmouth on 13 May 1787, and arrived at Botany Bay on 18 January 1788. She was captained by Henry Lidgbird Ball and the surgeon was James Callam. After the establishment of the initial settlement at Port Jackson, she was the link between the colony and Norfolk Island, making 10 trips. Following the loss of Sirius in 1790 she became the colony's only link with the outside world. On 17 April 1790 she was sent to Batavia for supplies, returning on 19 September, having chartered a Dutch vessel, the Waaksamheid, to follow with more stores. Supply left Port Jackson on 26 November 1791 and sailed via Cape Horn reaching Plymouth on 21 April 1792. She was bought at auction in July 1792, renamed Thomas and Nancy, and carried coal in the Thames area until 1806.

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