Leichhardt: A Scientist in a Strange Land

A Surveyor's Search

“Being now on the line of route which Dr Leichhardt had stated his intention of following …”

Entry by A.C. Gregory, 17 April, 1858 in Expedition in Search of Dr. Leichhardt

A number of expeditions in search of Leichhardt were organised by government authorities and other sponsors. In 1858, accomplished surveyor Augustus Charles Gregory was put in charge of the fifth such expedition, funded by the New South Wales Government.

Three weeks into the journey, Gregory came upon the remains of a campsite some 140 kilometres upstream from where the Barcoo and Alice Rivers meet. Physical evidence convinced Gregory that he had found the remnants of an 1848 Leichhardt encampment. With no remains found along the Barcoo, Gregory decided that Leichhardt had turned northwest, from where the rivers converged, and subsequently died of thirst. This was discredited by, amongst others, John Roper and James Calvert, both members of Leichhardt’s Port Essington expedition. However, even these two could not agree on the fate of their erstwhile leader.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Museum information:

PO Box 3300, South Brisbane BC, Queensland 4101  |  Phone: +61 (0)7 3840 7555   |  Email: discoverycentre@qm.qld.gov.au