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Special surveys in South Australia
Title : Special surveys in South Australia Special surveys in South Australia
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Creator : Arrowsmith, John, 1790-1873
Source : Map showing the special surveys in South Australia to the eastward of the Gulf of St. Vincent
Place Of Creation : London
Publisher : John Arrowsmith
Date of creation : 1841
Format : Map
Catalogue record
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Description :
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This map shows South Australia from Latitude 33 to 35 degrees 40 minutes South and Longitude 138 to 141 degrees only, that is Saint Vincent Gulf to the eastern border. It was compiled by John Arrowsmith from documents in the Survey Office, Adelaide. The map includes river systems, mountain ranges and notes on natural features, and also special surveys outlined with a legend of the purchasers. The map and the special surveys reveal the extent of the exploration of South Australia since first settlememt in 1836. The Finniss River and Currency Creek were discovered in 1837, the South Parra or Gawler River in 1837, and Edward Eyre discovered the River Broughton and Crystal Brook in 1839 and 1840. Governor Gawler's 1839 expedition to Mount Bryan is shown leaving and returning to the Elbow or North West Bend on the River Murray. Hawdon Plains and Gouger Range at the top of the map are now unrecognised names on both Place names online ( and in Manning's Place names of South Australia. The map also includes some description of the land, particularly along the River Murray and the legend of names of the purchasers of the Special Surveys can be seen at the left of the map.

Special surveys were exceptions to the rule that land could not be acquired before it had been surveyed by the official surveyors. However private individuals or a consortium could pay for a large block of land that was outside of the surveyed areas to be surveyed for them and then claim the choice land within the special survey area. None of these special surveys were undertaken after 1846, as the British government considered that land sales should be fully available to the general public and not just wealthy individuals.

Related names :

Arrowsmith, John, 1790-1873

Period : 1836-1851
Region : Mt Lofty Ranges and Eastern Plain
Further reading :

Manning, Geoffrey H., Manning's place names of South Australia [Adelaide]: G.H. Manning, 1990

Finnis, H. J. The first special survey [Adelaide?: s.n., 1951] (Adelaide?: Hunkin, Ellis & King)

Williams, Gwenneth South Australian exploration to 1856 Adelaide: Board of Governors of the Public Library, Museum, and Art Gallery of South Australia, 1919

The Wakefield companion to South Australian history Kent Town, S. Aust.: Wakefield Press, 2001

Internet links :
Exhibitions and events :

State Library of South Australia: Mortlock Wing. Taking it to the edge August 2004-



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