Royal Geographical Society of South Australia

Royal Geographical Society of South Australia

The Royal Geographical Society of South Australia is located in the State Library of South Australia on North Terrace, Adelaide. Founded in 1885 to further the exploration of South Australia, today the society's emphasis is on the natural and cultural environment. It promotes this through monthly lectures, excursions and interpretation of the modified and natural landscape, not only in South Australia, but of Australia and the wider world. The society has a strong publication programme, highlighted by its Explore the Barossa and Explore the Flinders Ranges guidebooks. The society's activities are strongly supported by its Library of over 25 000 volumes. The largest non-government, specialist geographical collection in Australia, the library includes maps, manuscripts and photographs as well as books on the history of geography and Australian and world exploration. A fascinating collection of historical artefacts, largely to do with exploration is also held. All these are freely available for the public to view.

Address: 
State Library Building, North Terrace, Adelaide, SA
Tel: 
0882077266
Hours: 
Monday - Friday 10:00am - 1:00pm
Admission: 
Free
Facilities: 
Wheelchair access, Book sales, Reference library, Guided tours (by arrangement), lecture program, 2 brochures (general and library).
Collection: 
25 000 books and periodicals, 2 000 photographs, 200 manuscripts, 800 maps, over 200 relics of exploration of Australia.
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Items

Drinking Flask

McKinlay's Whisky Flask

McKinlay's Whisky Flask
Creator:
Unknown
Description:
Silver-plated whisky flask with engraved decorations and "J.McK" on front. Screw cap missing. Belonged to explorer E. J McKinlay (1819-1872) who led one of the search parties for Burke and Wills and later an expedition to the Northern Territory ro determine a better site then Adam Bay for the principal settlement.
Date:
Pre 1872
Item Id Number:
R55

Collapsible Chair

Stuart's Chair

Stuart's Chair
Creator:
John McDouall Stuart
Description:
Folding wooden-framed chair with leather-thong seat and bark. Mcdouall Stuart (1815-1866) the famous explorer, made this chair while working for James Sinclair of Green Patch Station, near Port Lincoln.
Date:
1854
Item Id Number:
R78

Surveyors Level

Colonel William Light's Level

Colonel William Light's Level
Creator:
Troughton and Sims, London
Description:
Brass level with threaded base for mounting. Built-in compass. Objective lens 1.5" diameter. With lens cap, diagonal eyepiece and plumb bob. Contained in wooden case with brass label inscribed "light" William Light (1786-1839) Surveyor of the City of Adelaide.
Date:
Pre 1836
Item Id Number:
R49

Tree bark

Gosse's Tree

Gosse's Tree
Creator:
Cut and presented by W.H. Tietkens
Description:
Two pieces of heavy bark or wood removed from tree, blazed by explorer W.C. Gosse on Stevenson peak, Petermann Range, Northern Territory in 1873. Shows mirror image of original. Gosse was thhe first European to reach and name Ayers Rock (Uluru).
Date:
1873-1889
Item Id Number:
R38, R38A

Water Canteen

Coulthard's Canteen

Coulthard's Canteen
Creator:
Unknown
Description:
Dark brown metal water canteen inscribed with the dying message of explorer William Coulthard. Coulthard perished near Pernatty Lagoon, in 1858 his body was found by B.H. Babbage.
Date:
C 1858
Item Id Number:
R24

Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia (South Australian Branch), vol 11, 1910 p.57. Includes text of message/ Geonews newsletter of RGS of SA vol 1 no 1 Mar/Apr 1994 P 8-10/ South Australian Parliamentary paper 25/1858, p29-30