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Very rare first issue, 12th August 1858 of this hydrographic chart covering the west coast of the South Island of New Zealand coast from Cape Foulwind to present day Tasman’s and Golden Bays. Collections: Alexander Turnbull Library : 9883-2234607 (later … Read Full Description
Rest of the World
Orders over A$300
ship free worldwide
Very rare first issue, 12th August 1858 of this hydrographic chart covering the west coast of the South Island of New Zealand coast from Cape Foulwind to present day Tasman’s and Golden Bays.
Alexander Turnbull Library : 9883-2234607 (later issue 1874 additions to 1894)
Royal Museum Greenwich: G263:2/17 (1884 issue)
Hydrographic Office London History ( - )
Naval policy dictated that Admiralty charts be destroyed when superseded to avoid navigational error. The Admiralty’s first Hydrographer, Alexander Dalrymple, was appointed in 1795 and in the next year the existing charts were brought together and catalogued. The first chart the Admiralty produced was of Quiberon Bay in Brittany and did not appear until 1800. Dalrymple was succeeded in 1808 by Captain Thomas Hurd, under whose stewardship the department was given permission to sell charts to the public. Hurd oversaw the first production of “Sailing Directions” in 1829 and the first catalogue in 1825 with 736 charts. Rear-Admiral Sir W. Edward Parry was appointed Hydrographer in 1823 after his second expedition to discover a Northwest Passage. Under Dalrymple’s successor, Captain Thomas Hurd, Admiralty charts were sold to the general public, and by 1825 there were 736 charts listed in the catalogue. In 1829 the first sailing directions were published, and in 1833, under Rear-Admiral Sir Francis Beaufort the tide tables were first published. Notices to Mariners came out in 1834, allowing for the timely correction of charts already in use. Beaufort was certainly responsible for a step change in output; by the time he left the office in 1855 the Hydrographic Office had a catalogue of nearly 2,000 charts and was producing over 130,000 charts, of which about half were provided to the Royal Navy and half sold. Hydrographers; 1795 - 1808 Alexander Dalrymple 1808 - 1823 Captain Thomas Hurd 1823 - 1829 Rear-Admiral Sir William Parry 1829 - 1855 Rear-Admiral Sir Francis Beaufort 1855 - 1863 Rear Admiral John Washington 1863 - 1874 Vice Admiral Sir George Richards 1874 - 1884 Captain Sir Frederick Evans 1884 - 1904 Rear Admiral Sir William Wharton 1904 - 1909 Rear Admiral Mostyn Field 1909 - 1914 Rear Admiral Herbert Purey-Cust 1914 - 1919 Rear Admiral Sir John Parry 1919 - 1924 Vice Admiral Frederick Learmonth 1924 - 1932 Vice Admiral Percy Douglas 1932 - 1945 Vice Admiral Sir John Edgell 1945 - 1950 Rear Admiral Arthur Norris Wyatt
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John Lort Stokes (1812 - 1885)
Stokes was an explorer and hydrographer, was the son of Henry Stokes. He entered the navy in the Prince Regent in 1824 and was soon transferred to the brig Beagle, in which he served for eighteen years, becoming midshipman in 1825, mate and assistant surveyor in 1831, lieutenant in 1837 and commander in 1841. After marine surveys of South America in 1826-32 and the voyage around the world described by Charles Darwin in 1833-36, the Beagle was sent under Commander John Wickham to survey Australian waters, arriving in December 1837. During the survey of the Timor Sea in 1839 Stokes was several times entrusted with the closer examination of what is now the Northern Territory coast. He was the first to discover and name the Victoria River and Port Darwin, commemorating his old shipmate. While examining Point Pearce in December 1839 Stokes was speared in the shoulder by Aboriginals, but recovered from his wound and in March 1841 succeeded Wickham in command of the Beagle. Between June and August of that year he surveyed part of the Gulf of Carpentaria, indulging whenever possible 'the exquisite enjoyment of discovery' by making excursions inland. He named the Flinders and Albert Rivers, and between them the Plains of Promise, whose pleasing appearance prompted him to foretell the spread of 'many christian hamlets' throughout the area. Stokes had not allowed for the fluctuation in northern seasons, and 120 years later the area was still largely unoccupied but for cattle stations. A later piece of prophecy was no more fortunate. In December 1841, while the Beagle was off the coast of Western Australia, Stokes was requested to inspect Port Grey, a site proposed for the Australind settlement on the basis of enthusiastic reports by Captain (Sir) George Grey. Arriving in midsummer, Stokes was not impressed, and the Western Australian Co. accordingly decided to retain the site near Bunbury originally proposed for its settlement. Within ten years the Port Grey-Champion Bay area was settled and later became one of the earliest successful wheat-growing areas in Western Australia. Stokes's doubtful judgment as a land explorer could not obscure his merits as a marine surveyor. Many of the hydrographic maps prepared by Wickham and Stokes during their North Australian cruises, and later while Stokes was examining Bass Strait in 1842, were still in use during World War II. After returning to England he published in two volumes Discoveries in Australia (London, 1846). He rose high in the service of the Admiralty, ending as admiral on the retired list in 1877. He spent his retirement on an estate at Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, and died on 11 June 1885.
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