Robert Jack Logan ( 1845 - 1921)

Robert Jack Logan (1845-1921) Logan was a geologist and explorer, educated at the Irvine Academy and at the University of Edinburgh, he joined the Geological Survey of Scotland in 1867 and by 1876 had contributed greatly to Scottish geology by mapping the coalfields.

In 1876 Jack was appointed geological surveyor for northern Queensland and arrived at Townsville in 1877. In 1879 he became government geologist for the whole colony. He was president of the geological section for the first meeting of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science in 1888, and president of the Royal Society of Queensland in 1894. He resigned his government post in 1899 to explore for an English company the metalliferous deposits of Szechuan in China. When the Boxer rising broke out he and his son Robert Lockhart made their way to Burma through 450 miles (724 km) of uncharted mountain country known in World War II as ‘The Hump’. In 1901-04 he practised as a consultant mining geologist in London. He then returned to Australia and for five years was a consulting engineer in Western Australia.

Jack’s geological work for Queensland is outstanding in both quality and quantity and remarkable for its accurate and detailed observation. His recognition of the basinal structure of western Queensland and its potential for artesian water led to the first government bore in the Great Artesian Basin being sunk at Barcaldine in 1887. He personally mapped and appraised the Bowen River coalfield and coal prospects near Cooktown, Townsville and the Flinders River, and reported on twelve goldfields including Mount Morgan, Charters Towers and the Palmer as well as the Stanthorpe and four northern tinfields, the Argentine and other silver mines, the Chillagoe and Koorboora mining districts and the sapphire deposits of Withersfield.

On a journey in 1880 he was speared in a surprise night attack by Aboriginals.

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