This iconic Territory image features Robert Monteith diving at Lameroo Baths. The baths opened in 1922, just off the Esplanade in Darwin's centre. It quickly became a popular place of relaxation, plus an occasional swimming carnival. But like all saltwater swimming in Darwin, swimmers couldn't relax completely, according local Valerie Fletcher: the tides being very extreme, you would have to go down to the beach and wait until the water came over the wall. It was supposed to be shark-proof, but I remember sharks, and the fear of crocodiles. I don't seem to remember quite the same fear of the stingers, although I know people did get occasionally stung." The Lameroo baths deteriorated over time and after the Parap pool opened in 1960 the use of the baths dwindled. Finally, in 1974, Cyclone Tracy removed most of what was left them.


Picture: Robert Monteith Collection, Northern Territory Library


Published: 1 May 2016

Forgotten Territory was a weekly photo column of historic images in the Northern Territory News which I curated from 2016 until 2019 supported by the collections of the Northern Territory Library and other cultural institutions around Australia, as well as local history Facebook groups. 

Click on the images to read the story behind the image.

Warning: May contain images of people who have died.

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These works were made on Arrernte, Larrakia, Gaddigal and Lenape land that was never ceded