Books Should Be Free is now
Loyal Books
Free Public Domain Audiobooks & eBook Downloads
Search by: Title, Author or Keyword

Explorations in Australia The Journals of John McDouall Stuart   By: (1815-1866)

Book cover

First Page:

EXPLORATIONS IN AUSTRALIA.

THE JOURNALS

OF

JOHN McDOUALL STUART

DURING THE YEARS

1858, 1859, 1860, 1861, & 1862,

WHEN HE FIXED THE CENTRE OF THE CONTINENT AND SUCCESSFULLY CROSSED IT FROM SEA TO SEA.

EDITED FROM MR. STUART'S MANUSCRIPT BY WILLIAM HARDMAN, M.A., F.R.G.S., &c.

With Maps, a Photographic Portrait of Mr. Stuart, and twelve Engravings drawn on wood by George French Angas, from Sketches taken during the different expeditions.

(SANS CHANGER. S.O. AND CO.)

SECOND EDITION.

1865.

ADVERTISEMENT

TO THE

SECOND EDITION.

Since the first edition of this work was published Mr. Stuart has arrived in England, and at a recent meeting of the Geographical Society he announced that, taking advantage of his privilege as a discoverer, he had christened the rich tract of country which he has opened up to the South Australians Alexandra Land.

December 1st, 1864.

PREFACE BY THE EDITOR.

The explorations of Mr. John McDouall Stuart may truly be said, without disparaging his brother explorers, to be amongst the most important in the history of Australian discovery. In 1844 he gained his first experiences under the guidance of that distinguished explorer, Captain Sturt, whose expedition he accompanied in the capacity of draughtsman. Leaving Lake Torrens on the left, Captain Sturt and his party passed up the Murray and the Darling, until finding that the latter would carry him too far from the northern course, which was the one he had marked out for himself, he turned up a small tributary known to the natives as the Williorara. The water of this stream failing him, he pushed on over a barren tract, until he suddenly came upon a fruitful and well watered spot, which he named the Rocky Glen. In this picturesque glen they were detained for six months, during which time no rain fell. The heat of the sun was so intense that every screw in their boxes was drawn, and all horn handles and combs split into fine laminae. The lead dropped from their pencils, their finger nails became as brittle as glass, and their hair, and the wool on their sheep, ceased to grow. Scurvy attacked them all, and Mr. Poole, the second in command, died. In order to avoid the scorching rays of the sun, they had excavated an underground chamber, to which they retired during the heat of the day.

When the long expected rain fell, they pushed on for fifty miles to another suitable halting place, which was called Park Depot. From this depot Captain Sturt made two attempts to reach the Centre of the continent. He started, accompanied by four of his party, advancing over a country which resembled an ocean whose mighty billows, fifty or sixty feet high, had become suddenly hardened into long parallel ridges of solid sand. The abrupt termination of this was succeeded at two hundred miles by what is now so well known as Sturt's Stony Desert, to which frequent allusion is made by Mr. Stuart in his journals. After thirty miles more, this stony desert ceased with equal abruptness, and was followed by a vast plain of dried mud, which Captain Sturt describes as "a boundless ploughed field, on which floods had settled and subsided." After advancing two hundred miles beyond the Stony Desert, and to within one hundred and fifty miles of the Centre of the continent, they were compelled to return to Park Depot, where they arrived in a most exhausted condition.

A short rest at the Depot was followed by another expedition, Captain Sturt being on this occasion accompanied by Mr. Stuart and two men. The seventh day of their journey brought them to the banks of a fine creek, now so well known as Cooper Creek in connection with the fate of those unfortunate explorers, Burke and Wills. At two hundred miles from Cooper Creek Captain Sturt and his party were again met by the Stony Desert, but slightly varied in its aspect. Before abandoning his attempt to proceed, the leader of the expedition laid the matter before his companions, and he writes as follows: "I should be doing an injustice to Mr... Continue reading book >>




eBook Downloads
ePUB eBook
• iBooks for iPhone and iPad
• Nook
• Sony Reader
Kindle eBook
• Mobi file format for Kindle
Read eBook
• Load eBook in browser
Text File eBook
• Computers
• Windows
• Mac

Review this book



Popular Genres
More Genres
Languages
Paid Books