When next you are in the museum take notice of the painting on the left wall. It is of the Acme a wooden topsail schooner, built by Edward Davis. This painting was donated to BWHS by Beryl Nixon a few years ago.
Edward Davis was born at Wollongong on 10 January 1837, and was one of the shipbuilding brothers William, Benjamin, Rock, and Thomas. Another brother George, was a carpenter but would probably have worked for some of his time in shipbuilding. Edward was the only native born Australian among the shipbuilding Davis brothers, his siblings having arrived in NSW from Ireland in 1833, except for Rock who was born during the voyage.
In 1859 Edward bought two acres of land at Cockle Creek, Davistown but it was not until some years later that he set up his own shipbuilding yard on this site.
Edward Davis moved his shipbuilding operations from Davistown to Point Frederick in 1874 and Acme was built there in 1876. It was 55 tons, 67.5 X 19.3 x 7.0 ft, and had a female bust figure head. It was owned by Edward Davis and David Capper, both of Brisbane Water. Sadly it was wrecked at Seal Rock Bay NSW on 16th July 1876, in a heavy gale on her first trip. The name Davistown evolved because of the number of Davis family members living along the stretch of Cockle Creek channel. The Rev. Alfred Glennie of Gosford referred to the area when writing in his journals between 1855 and 1864 as Davis Village, Davisville, and Davis Town.
(Ref: Dundon, Gwen. The Shipbuilders of Brisbane Water NSW – Gwen Dundon, 1997)