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Channel of Cooper Creek discovered
Title : Channel of Cooper Creek discovered Channel of Cooper Creek discovered
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Creator : Sturt, Charles, 1795-1869
Source : Narrative of an expedition into Central Australia ..., volume 2, p. 28
Place Of Creation : London
Publisher : T. and W. Boone
Date of creation : 1849
Format : Book
Contributor : State Library catalogue
Catalogue record
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Description :

Mr. Stuart and Mack took their guns and knocked over three ducks, that were, I suppose, never used to be so taken in; but the remainder would not stand fire long, and flew off to the eastward.

It was 12 October 1845 and Charles Sturt and his men prepared breakfast on the banks of the newly discovered Cooper Creek, a very substantial oasis in the desert. Several ducks were shot to add to the meal. Later after the horses had had a good feed and a rest Sturt climbed a small hill, and discovered another channel of the creek, some 200 yards wide. There were many paths of Aboriginal peoples, and evidence of them having fired the grass, for it to grow afresh. Cooper Creek was Sturt's most important discovery on this expedition of 1844-46.

It was evident when the men shot the ducks that guns had never been used in the area before. However the ducks quickly learnt the meaning of the guns' report, and flew off. It was not so easy to make further kills. However the fresh meat provided by the shot birds would have been a welcome relief to men living on salted meat, and damper.

Sturt's expedition of 1844-46 was to search for the watershed west of the Darling River, or a central mountain range. Sturt himself hoped to find an inland sea which he believed to exist. He had left Adelaide equipped with a boat in which to sail his sea. However all he and his expedition discovereed beside Cooper Creek, were the Stony Desert, and the endless sand dunes of the Simpson Desert. The boat was abandoned on the return journey to Adelaide.

Related names :

Sturt, Charles, 1795-1869

Coverage year : 1849
Period : 1836-1851
Place : Central Australia
Region : Flinders Ranges and Far North - Outback
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