HMAS Sydney II and the German Raider, HSK Kormoran
The battle between the HMAS Sydney II and the German Raider, HSK Kormoran on November 19, 1941, is commemorated in the development of the Carnarvon Heritage Precinct. There is no doubt of Carnarvon's role in the rescue operation that followed the battle. There were no survivors from the Sydney, but 319 men from aboard the Kormoran survived the ordeal. Of these, 216 were picked up by rescuing ships at sea, and a further 103 came ashore in two lifeboats just north of Carnarvon. One of these lifeboats is on display in the new Interpretive Centre. In 1941 the residents of Carnarvon rallied bedding and supplies for what they thought were survivors of the Sydney being retrieved from the coast north of Carnarvon. Everyone was in a state of shock when it became apparent that there were no survivors from HMAS Sydney II and these were in fact survivors of the German ship HSK Kormoran. They were interned in the local police station and awaited transport to Fremantle for questioning.