IN SEARCH OF BURKE AND WILLS.
WITH A MAP SHOWING HIS ROUTE.
F.F. BAILLIERE, publisher, 85 Collins Street east.
London: H. BAILLIERE. Paris: J.B. BAILLIERE. New York and Madrid.
And all booksellers.
The readers of this pamphlet are no doubt aware that the anxiety entertained for the fate of Burke and Wills led to the formation of several expeditions in their search. The first of these was formed in Melbourne and entrusted to the command of Mr. Howitt. The second in Adelaide, under Mr. McKinlay. The third from Rockhampton, under Mr. Walker; and the fourth from Brisbane, under Mr. Landsborough. These several expeditions were organised and started within a short period of each other. The steamship Victoria, Commander Norman, was despatched by the Victorian Government to the Gulf of Carpentaria to assist the explorers in carrying out their objects.
Mr. Howitt, as is well-known, early succeeded in ascertaining the melancholy fate of Burke and Wills: but before his letter announcing it reached Melbourne the other expeditions referred to had set out.
The brig Firefly was chartered in Melbourne to take from Brisbane to Carpentaria Mr. Landsborough’s party and equipments, and also some stores for Mr. Walker’s party, the latter having been instructed to proceed from Rockhampton overland, by the shortest route, to a rendezvous at the Gulf. The Firefly, having reached Moreton Bay and shipped the horses, set sail for Carpentaria on the 24th August with Mr. Landsborough and his party.
As it is the object of this pamphlet to give details, especially of his expedition, the journal, letters, etc., which follow, are now presented.
Brisbane party, W. Landsborough, esquire, leader, report to 30th September 1861.
Sweer’s Island, Gulf of Carpentaria, 30th September 1861.
To Captain Norman of Her Majesty’s Colonial
War Steamer Victoria, and
Commander-in-chief of Northern Expedition Parties.
I have the honour to inform you that the greatest attention was paid by my parties to the horses for the expedition on board the Firefly, and they ought, during the eight days after leaving Moreton Bay, while we had the finest weather, to have done well, if their allowance of five gallons of water each a day had been sufficient for them; but with that allowance they were so thirsty that they did not thrive well. That quantity of water may do well for horses intended for the Indian market, where they can be fattened afterwards; but for our expedition horses, which were intended for immediate service on landing, to be kept in a close hold, confined by the cargo of the vessel, and fed with dry forage (they did not eat the carrots at first, until they had acquired a taste for them) eight gallons of water each per day at least should have been allowed to them.