State Library of South Australia logo Foundation Documents 1800-1851
SA Memory. South Australia past and present, for the future

The departure of Captain Sturt on his expedition into the interior
Title : The departure of Captain Sturt on his expedition into the interior The departure of Captain Sturt on his expedition into the interior
Add To My SA Memory
Creator : Gill, S.T. (Samuel Thomas), 1818-1880 artist
Source : B 15276/54
Publisher : McLean
Date of creation : ca. 1846
Additional Creator : Giles, J.W. Angas, George French, 1822-1886
Format : Artwork
Dimensions : 259 x 385 mm
Contributor : State Library catalogue
Catalogue record
The State Library of South Australia is keen to find out more about SA Memory items. We encourage you to contact the Library if you have additional information about any of these items.
Copyright : Reproduction rights are owned by State Library of South Australia. This image may be printed or saved for research or study. Use for any other purpose requires permission from the State Library of South Australia. To request approval, complete the Permission to publish form.
Description :

This illustration depicts the departure of Captain Sturt from Adelaide, on his expedition into the interior, in August, 1844. Part of the text accompanying the illustration reads;

The annexed plate will convey some idea of the busy and animated scene the city of Adelaide presented on the eventful morning the gallant Sturt set out on his late expedition to penetrate into the centre of the vast continent of Australia: he was attended by a large concourse of his friends and fellow colonists, who accompanied him out of town, mounted upon horseback, and the day was a gala for the citizens of Adelaide.

This is one of 60 coloured lithographs found in the 1847 edition of South Australia illustrated by colonial artist George French Angas, together with a descriptive passage for each. The head of the procession, no doubt lead by Governor Grey and Captain Sturt, seen from the north-west corner of Hindley Street, is moving along King William Street. This view was subsequently lithographed by J. W. Giles for George French Angas's South Australia illustrated.

Charles Sturt led an expedition into central Australia in the years 1844-46 in search of a central mountain range and watershed: establishing a base camp in the Barrier Ranges he explored out from here in various forays encountering only arid conditions. He later moved further north and encountered the wastes of the Stony and Simpson Deserts. He discovered and named the Cooper Creek, but failed to recognise that he had discovered the watershed he had been sent to find.

In 1840, Gill established a studio in Adelaide and advertised for those 'desirous of obtaining correct likenesses of themselves, familiesor friends', animals, local scenery and residences, to contact him. He captured detailed scenes of colonial life in the streets of Adelaide and Melbourne, in the South Australian countryside and on the Victorian gold fields.

Gill was one of the most prolific water-colour painters working in Australia in the nineteenth century. He was an artist who was often out in the field in the Adelaide Hills or the Flinders Ranges, and on the spot at mine sites, in city streets, at Port Adelaide, the races or at the Agricultural and Horticultural Society's annual show.

Related names :

Angas, George French, 1822-1886

Gill, S.T. (Samuel Thomas), 1818-1880

Grey, George, Sir, 1812-1876

Sturt Charles, 1795-1869

Coverage year : ca.1846
Period : 1836-1851
Place : Adelaide, South Australia
Region : Adelaide city
Further reading :

Angas, G.F. South Australia illustrated London : Thomas M'Lean, 1847

Appleyard, Ron S.T. Gill, the South Australian years 1839-1852. Adelaide: Art Gallery of South Australia, 1986

Bowden, Keith Macrae Samuel Thomas Gill: artist. [Collaroy, N.S.W.] : K.M. Bowden, [1971]

Dutton, Geoffrey S.T. Gill's Australia. South Melbourne: Macmillan, 1981

Sturt, Charles Narrative of an expedition into Central Australia : performed under the authority of Her Majesty's Government, during the years 1844, 5, and 6, together with a notice of the Province of South Australia, in 1847 New York: Greenwood Press, [1969]

Internet links :



About SA Memory

Explore SA Memory

SA Memory Themes


My SA Memory


What's on