Description : British explorers Robert O'Hara Burke and William John Wills set out in 1860 to explore the Australian outback -- they never returned, but their journals tell their story. One year later, a search party led by Frederick Walker left to find them. Though unsuccessful, they discovered what had happened to the intrepid explorers.
Description : Catalogue of an exhibition examinining the explorers' place in Australian culture and including an array of material collected and produced by the expedition and its search parties (diaries, letters and paintings, birds and plants, hair and bones, clothing, weapons, food and narcotics). Explores the transformation of the expedition through the work of Australian artists.
Description : This book challenges the common assumption that little or nothing of scientific value was achieved during the Burke and Wills expedition. The Royal Society of Victoria initiated the Victorian Exploring Expedition as a serious scientific exploration of hitherto unexplored regions of inland and northern Australia. Members of the expedition were issued with detailed instructions on scientific measurements and observations to be carried out, covering about a dozen areas of science. The tragic ending of the expedition meant that most of the results of the scientific investigations were not reported or published. Burke and Wills: The Scientific Legacy of the Victorian Exploring Expedition rectifies this historic omission. It includes the original instructions as well as numerous paintings and drawings, documents the actual science undertaken as recorded in notebooks and diaries, and analyses the outcomes. It reveals for the first time the true extent and limits of the scientific achievements of both the Burke and Wills expedition and the various relief expeditions which followed. Importantly, this new book has led to a re-appraisal of the shortcomings and the successes of the journey. It will be a compelling read for all those interested in the history of exploration, science and natural history, as well as Australian history and heritage.
Description : 'They have left here today!' he calls to the others. When King puts his hand down above the ashes of the fire, it is to find it still hot. There is even a tiny flame flickering from the end of one log. They must have left just hours ago.' MELBOURNE, 20 AUGUST 1860. In an ambitious quest to be the first Europeans to cross the harsh Australian continent, the Victorian Exploring Expedition sets off, farewelled by 15,000 cheering well-wishers. Led by Robert O'Hara Burke, a brave man totally lacking in the bush skills necessary for his task; surveyor and meteorologist William Wills; and 17 others, the expedition took 20 tons of equipment carried on six wagons, 23 horses and 26 camels. Almost immediately plagued by disputes and sackings, the expeditioners battled the extremes of the Australian landscape and weather: its deserts, the boggy mangrove swamps of the Gulf, the searing heat and flooding rains. Food ran short and, unable to live off the land, the men nevertheless mostly spurned the offers of help from the local Indigenous people. In desperation, leaving the rest of the party at the expedition's depot on Coopers Creek, Burke, Wills and John King made a dash for the Gulf in December 1860. Bad luck and bad management would see them miss by just hours a rendezvous back at Coopers Creek, leaving them stranded in the wilderness with practically no supplies. Only King survived to tell the tale. Yet, despite their tragic fates, the names of Burke and Wills have become synonymous with perseverance and bravery in the face of overwhelming odds. They live on in Australia's history - and their story remains immediate and compelling.
Description : The Aboriginal Story of Burke and Wills is the first major study of Aboriginal associations with the Burke and Wills expedition of 1860–61. A main theme of the book is the contrast between the skills, perceptions and knowledge of the Indigenous people and those of the new arrivals, and the extent to which this affected the outcome of the expedition. The book offers a reinterpretation of the literature surrounding Burke and Wills, using official correspondence, expedition journals and diaries, visual art, and archaeological and linguistic research – and then complements this with references to Aboriginal oral histories and social memory. It highlights the interaction of expedition members with Aboriginal people and their subsequent contribution to Aboriginal studies. The book also considers contemporary and multi-disciplinary critiques that the expedition members were, on the whole, deficient in bush craft, especially in light of the expedition’s failure to use Aboriginal guides in any systematic way. Generously illustrated with historical photographs and line drawings, The Aboriginal Story of Burke and Wills is an important resource for Indigenous people, Burke and Wills history enthusiasts and the wider community. This book is the outcome of an Australian Research Council project.
Description : Map shows also the routes of Oxley, Sturt, Mitchell, Eyre, Leichhardt, Kennedy, Gregory, Babbage, Warburton, Stuart, Burke and Walker
Description : Murgatroyd has brought together for the first time new scientific and historical evidence, and tells the story of Burke and Wills, the explorers who set out to cross Australia from coast to coast, in brilliant detail. Here, at last, is the book that brings to life Australia's most infamous story of exploration. The Dig Treedescribes vividly the remarkable courage, the suffering and the moments of sheer lunacy, as Burke and Wills struggled to survive in a harsh land they did not understand. Sarah Murgatroyd's style is immensely readable. She has written with warmth about Burke and Wills and their party, and reveals fascinating detail - for example, that Burke had a notoriously bad sense of direction, and was famous for getting lost even on the way home from his local pub! Though we all know the basic story of the Burke and Wills expedition, The Dig Treereveals just how little most of us know of the individuals, the politics, the blunders and the ambitions behind this extraordinary event in Australia's history. This is essential and utterly compelling reading.