Fremantle Stuff > Hotels > Black Swan Hotel

Black Swan Hotel

The Black Swan Hotel (or Inn) was established in 1830 in Cantonment Street (and therefore on the river) by John Bateman (his first venture in the colony) and Anthony Curtis, formerly a navy man.

... the Black Swan Inn on Cantonment Street—more or less halfway between the town proper and the North Fremantle bridge and as Bateman said, 'close to the ferry'.
As mentioned earlier, Curtis and Bateman arrived together in the ship Medina (Capt. Pace) on 6th July 1830, Bateman as a passenger and Curtis working his passage as a steward. Curtis had been here before on a Royal Navy ship, and having taken a liking to the place, resigned from the navy and worked his way back to the colony. In October 1830 he and Bateman applied for a publican's licence; they proposed building a good stone house with four or five rooms on the ground floor and good bedrooms above, to be called the Black Swan. All of this was carried out, possibly on a block of four lots facing Cantonment street and backing almost to the harbour's [river's] edge.
Although this venture could not be called a success, both men were subsequently successful. They both became large shipping owners, traders, and property owners. It is not known what happened to the Black Swan when Curtis left to open his own place, which he called the Stag's Head in High street. Possibly Bateman let or sold the place, because in March 1832 he was seeking employment with the government because of the high cost of provisions and the slackness of the hotel trade. Tuckfield: 78-79.

References and Links

Tuckfield, Trevor 1971, 'Early colonial inns and taverns', Part 1, Early Days: Journal and proceedings of the Royal Western Australian Historical Society, 7, 3: 65-82; Part 2, Early Days, 7, 7: 98-106.


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