Notable South Australians/Samuel White Sweet
Samuel White Sweet,
BORN at Portsea, England, May 1, 1825; joined H.M. Navy in 1844, and served on the China Station till 1849, chiefly in the signal department. Studied navigation, astronomy, and meteorology, and then joined the merchant service. In March, 1857, he was appointed to the command of the ship "Pizarro," and kept the meteorological log for the Board of Trade for three years, registering every four hours night and day, receiving from Admiral Fitzroy letters of Honorable Mention, especially in reference to forty sets of Lunars taken during one passage of seventy days. He was also presented with a large volume full of valuable information to seamen, with the wind-current and thermal charts of the world. During one of Captain Sweet's voyages in the "Pizarro," the crew mutinied, and the outbreak was only quelled by the prompt steps taken by their Commander. In 1861 Captain Sweet surveyed the harbour of "Pena Blanca" in South America, and had the honor of seeing the result of his labors placed on their charts by the British Admiralty. He gave up a sea-faring life in 1863, and emigrated to Queensland with his family with a view to embark in cotton growing. Failing, however, in that object, he came to Adelaide in 1867, and in February 1869, received from the Government of South Australia the appointment of Commander in H.M.C. Navy. He surveyed the Roper River from its entrance for a distance of 100 miles; piloted steamers up and down this river, plotted a chart of the survey, fixed the latitude and longitude of the mouth of the river, and then returned to Adelaide. He next served three years as master mariner in the Black Diamond line, and in 1875 finally retired from the sea and settled in Adelaide. Since that period Captain Sweet has devoted his attention almost wholly to photography, and the views of scenery taken by him are unequalled ia their fidelity and beauty; in fact, as a landscape photographer he is unequalled in the colony.