In August 1844 a heavily-laden party led by Captain Charles Sturt set out from Adelaide to head into the unexplored vastness of central Australia. Amongst their equipment was a boat: as well as carrying out his mission of scientific investigation and mapping the topography, Sturt was convinced he would find the inland sea that was reputed to lie in the middle of the continent and so make his reputation. This is the first full publication of Sturt's original journals of the trip. They record the hardships of the journeying through the parched landscape, but also show how his efforts helped reveal the nature of much of the mysterious interior of Australia, and how, in a manner uncharacteristic of his times, he established respectful and co-operative relations with the Aborigines he encountered along the way.
Richard C. Davis is Professor of English at the University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
’The book is anther publication in the prestigious Hakluyt Society series, and it has an excellent introductory essagy by the editor, Richard C. Davies of the University of Calgary. The generous botanical, zooological, topographical and ethnographical annotations make this volume a very rich source for those researching the exploration of Australia or undertaking comparative Indigenous relations/First Nation studies.’ The Northern Mariner