Treasures, Tragedies and Triumphs of The Batavia Coast
by Max Cramer.
Born in Geraldton on 6 July 1934, Max Cramer spent his childhood at Mt Fairfax Farm, Moonyoonooka. He left Geraldton Senior High School at the age of 16 to begin an apprenticeship as a carpenter, which eventually led to a career as a builder. His building career included work on the Bunbury Powerhouse and restoration of heritage buildings in Mt Magnet and Cue. Max is a foundation member of the Master Builder's Association. In February 1958, Max married Ines Sacristani from Busselton and they had three children, Kim, Mark and Paul.
A lifelong interest in fishing and scuba diving led him to develop a part-time sideline as a commercial diver. Max is also a foundation and life member of the Geraldton Skin Diving Club. In May 1963, Max, his brother Graham and a friend, Greg Allen, became the first people to dive on the wreck of the Dutch East India Merchantman Batavia. The following year, also in May, Max, his brother Graham and friend, Tom Brady, made the first dive on the Zuytdorp, another Dutch ship wrecked on the cliffs north of Kalbarri.
Max Cramer's tireless promotion of the tragic and bloody Batavia story redefined the Geraldton area as the Batavia Coast and his efforts to have the Batavia artefacts permanently housed in a Geraldton Museum have culminated in the building of the new Geraldton Maritime Museum.
Max has many interests and his activities have contributed much to local colour in Geraldton including his magician shows, regular floats and costumes in the Sunshine Festival. He also manufactures replicas of Batavia artefacts and other historical curiosities such as Dirk Hartog's plate. Max has rebuilt one of Geraldton's icons from the past, the Merry-Go-Round which overlooks the Geraldton foreshore.
In January of 1998 Max led an expedition to Dirk Hartog Island which uncovered a French Silver Ecu left as a marker in Turtle Bay by Captain Saint-Aloearn when he claimed Western Australia for France in 1772.
Voted Citizen of the Year in 1979 and 1999, Max is now semi-retired and has just published his memoirs, Treasures, Tragedies and Triumphs of the Batavia Coast.
- Hardcover (laminated boards)
- mainly mono photos and diagrams with eight colour plates.
- ISBN: 9780646384832