HMS Encounter (1902)

Encounter underway during World War I, with a strong stern wind. Photo in the collection of the Australian War Memorial.

Laid Down
1901
Launched
1902
Commissioned
1905
Decommissioned
1929
AD/BC
AD
History

HMS Encounter was a Challenger-class protected cruiser laid down in 1901 for the Royal Navy. She was commissioned 21 November, 1905, and stationed in Australia. Encounter lost fifteen of her crew in Sydney Harbor in 1909, when one of her boats was run over by a coastal steamer. Encounter was transferred to Australia in 1912, and was commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy. She saw extensive service during WWI, though little action, assisting in the seizure of German New Guinea, and capturing the steamer Zambezi and sailing ship Elfriede. On 5 December, 1919, Encounter was fully transferred to the RAN. She was paid off 30 September, 1920, and placed in reserve. In May, 1923, she was renamed Penguin, and converted into a submarine depot ship, and served in this capacity until decommissioned 15 August, 1929. Penguin was scuttled 14 September, 1932, off Bondi Beach, Sydney, in 243 feet (74m) of water, and is a popular dive spot.