John Jervis, Viscount St.Vincent 1735-1823

born at Meaford, Staffordshire on 9 January 1735, entered the Royal Navy on 4 January 1749, became Lieutenant on 19 February 1755, Vice-admiral in 1793 and Admiral in 1795. He was a strict disciplinarian and dealt rigorously with rampant unrest under his command, treating men as well as officers harshly, earning the reputation of having raised the discipline in the Royal Navy. He became first Lord of the Admiralty in 1801 and held it until Pitt returned to power in 1803.

Abel Janszoon Tasman 1603 - 1659

greatest of Dutch navigators, discoverer of Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania), New Zealand, the Tonga and the Fiji Islands, first circumnavigated Australia. He was born at Lutjegast in Groningen. In 1634, he was first referred to in the East Indies, sailing from Batavia (Feb.18) to Amboina. On 30.12.1636, he sailed from Batavia for home; he reached Holland on 01.8.1637, returned to the East on 15.4.1638, and reappeared at Batavia on 11.10 of that year. On 2.6.1639, he was dispatched in the company of Matthew (Matthijs Hendricxsen) Quast by Antony Van Diemen, Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies (1636-1645), on a voyage to the north-western Pacific, in quest of certain "Islands of gold and silver", supposed to lie in the ocean east of Japan. On this voyage Tasman and Quast visited the Philippines and improved Dutch knowledge of the east coast of Luzon; they also discovered and mapped various islands to the north, apparently the Bonin archipelago. Sailing on to N. and E. in search of the isles of precious metals, they ranged about fruitlessly in the northern Pacific, at one time believing themselves to be 600 miles east of Japan. After this, the voyage was continued almost constantly westward, but in varying latitudes, reaching as high as 42ºN., always without success. On 15.10.1639, the navigators decided to return, and, after touching at Japan, anchored at the Dutch fortress-station of Zeelandia in Formosa on 24.11.1639. After this, Tasman was engaged in operations in the Indian seas, sailing to Formosa, Japan, Cambodia, Palembang, etc., as a merchant captain in the service of the Dutch East India Company until 1642, when he set out on his first great "South Land" expedition.

Sailing from Batavia on 14 August 1642 with the two vessels Heemskerk and Zeehaan and calling at Mauritius (5 September to 8 October), he first sighted Tasmania on 24 November, sailed on to New Zealand which he reached on 13 December. Eventually, he returned to Batavia along a route north of New Guinea on 15 June 1643. In 1644, he was sent out again with three ships, the Limmen, Zeemeeuw and Brak, on a not well documented expedition which took him along Australia's North Coast. He explored completely and may have named the Gulf of Carpentaria. He quitted the Company's service in 1653 and probably died in Batavia on 22 October 1659 after making his will on 10 April 1657.

Louis Joseph, Duc de Vendôme 1654-1712

French Marshal, placed in command of the Franco-Spanish army in Italy. One of the most remarkable soldiers in the history of the French army, he had an extraordinary influence over his men.

Louis-Victor de Rochechouart, Duc de Vivonne 1636-1688

Marshal of French forces in Sicily, won an important victory at Messina on 25 March 1676 and became Viceroy of the island.

William Westall A.R.A. 1781-1850

landscape painter, known by his illustrations to works of travel.

Sir Nesbit Josiah Willoughby 1777-1856

offspring of a long established family of Nottinghamshire, entered the Royal Navy in 1790 and excelled by his unruly conduct which led to his discharge in 1800. He rejoined the navy in 1803 when war broke out with France. He commanded the Néréide frigate during its fight against a much stronger French force at Port Louis, Mauritius, just before Matthew Flinders was released from internment. This is probably when Flinders got the idea of using his name.

Charles Phillip Yorke 1764-1834

Member of Parliament for Cambridgeshire, later for Liskenard, became secretary of state of war in Addington's ministry in 1801. He opposed concessions to Roman Catholics and caused exclusion of strangers, including press reporters, from the House of Commons. He became First Lord of the Admiralty in 1810.

Louis Claude Desaulses de Freycinet 1779-1842

French navigator, born at Montélimart, Drôme on 7 August, entered the French navy in 1793. After taking part in engagements against the British, he joined in 1800, with his brother Louis Henri de Freycinet (1777-1840) who later reached the rank of admiral, Captain Baudin's expedition. He returned to Paris in 1805 to prepare the official report Voyage de découvertes aux terres australes, Paris, 1807-1816, with claims of discovery of parts of the South Coast first visited by Flinders. He continued to take part in and lead scientific and hydrographic expeditions. He died on 18 August at Freycinet, Drôme.

James Grant

commanded the small brig H.M. Tender Lady Nelson which left England in March 1800 for a voyage of discovery, to act later on as consort to the Investigator under Matthew Flinders.

John Murray

commanded the Lady Nelson during the survey of Western Port Bay during which he discovered Port Phillip Bay.


Name of one of 14 ships sailing from the Dutch port of Texel on 20.04.1621. Flinders writes that it was in 1622. The stretch of the coast between latitudes 31º and 35º was known for some time as Leeuwin's Land.

Monsieur de St.Alouarn

Flinders writes:" Monsieur de St.Alouarn had, indeed, seen some points or islands, in the year 1772, when he commanded the French flûte Le Gros Ventre; but the particulars are not generally known, being, in all probability, of little importance."

Pieter Nuyts

on Gulde Zeepart, probably carried too far south by the winds of the Southern Ocean, touched the South Coast of the Great South Land on 26.01.1627 in the neighbourhood of the Head of the Great Australian Bight. According to Flinders, the Dutch recital said: "In the year 1627, the South Coast of the .Great South Land was accidentally discovered by the ship Gulde Zeepard, outward bound from the Fatherland, for the space of 1000 miles." However, Flinders believed that Nuyts was not the captain of the ship, since, on his arrival in Batavia, he was sent as ambassador to Japan and afterwards was made Governor of Formosa. Perhaps, he was the Company's first merchant on board.

George Vancouver 1758-1798

English navigator, entered Royal Navy at the age of thirteen and accompanied James Cook on his second and third voyages of discovery (1772-74, 1776-80). After serving for several years in the West Indies, he was put in charge of an expedition to the North-West Coast of America to take over territory, occupied by the Spaniards, to explore the coast northwards, to search for an eastward passage to the Great Lakes and to ascertain the true character of the Juan de Fuca Strait. Accompanied by Lieutenant Broughton, the Discovery and Chatham left Falmouth on 1.04.1791 and proceeded via the Cape of Good Hope to Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti, Hawaii and North America. After surveying the latter's coast northward from California, he returned via Cape Horn.

William Broughton 1762-1821

British explorer, accompanied Vancouver as captain of Chatham and discovered the Chatham Islands, south of New Zealand, in 1791.

Jacques Labillardière

in his words, naturalist in D'Entrecasteaux's expedition, published his own report of the expedition with many very alert observations.

Sir Samuel Hood 1752-1814

British Vice-admiral, entered the Royal Navy in 1776. He took part in many battles and was promoted to his final position in 1805 after blockading the French port of Rochefort and defeating a small French squadron trying to escape. He died on 24.12. in Madras.

Edward John Eyre 1815-1901

British explorer and Colonial Governor, born on 5.8. as son of a Yorkshire clergyman, was intended for the army, but delays having arisen in producing a commission, he went out to New South Wales, to engage in the difficult, but very necessary undertaking of transporting stock westward to the new Colony of South Australia, then in great distress, where he became Magistrate and protector of the aborigines, whose interests he warmly advocated. Already experienced as an Australian traveler, he undertook the most extensive and difficult journeys in the desert country north and west of Adelaide and proved the possibility of land communication between South and West Australia. He became in succession Lieutenant-Governor of New Zealand, Governor of Vincent and Antigua, and of Jamaica. He died on 30.11.

John Thistle

Master of the Investigator, drowned 21.02.1802 at Cape Catastrophe. Flinders commented on the loss of this person: The reader will pardon me the observation that Mr.Thistle was truly a valuable man, as a seaman, an officer, and a good member of society. I had known him, and we had mostly served together, from the year 1794. He had been with Mr. Bass in his perilous expedition in the whale boat, and with me in the voyage around Van Diemen's Land, and in the succeeding expedition to Glass-house Bayand Hervey's Bay. From his merit and prudent conduct, he was promoted from before the mast to be a midshipman, and afterwards a master in his Majesty's service. His zeal for discovery had induced him to join the Investigator when at Spithead and ready to sail, although he had returned to England only three weeks before, after an absence of six years. Besides performing assiduously the duties of his situation, Mr. Thistle made himself well acquainted with the practice of nautical astronomy, and began to be very useful in the surveying department. His loss was severely felt by me; and he was lamented by all on board, more especially by his messmates, who knew more intimately the goodness and stability of his disposition.

Hugh Bell

surgeon on Investigator

Robert Purdie

surgeon's assistant on Investigator

Kennet Sinclair

Midshipman on Investigator

John Franklin 1786-1847

Midshipman on Investigator, English Rear-Admiral and explorer, was born at Spilsby, Lincolnshire on 16.04., in a line of free-holders or "franklins" from whom they had derived their surname long before. As 5th and youngest son of nine children, he was destined for the church. However, he desired at an early age to be a sailor and overcame his father's resistance. At the age of 15, he took part in the battle of Copenhagen on board the Polyphemus. Two months later, he joined the Investigator and became Flinders' most adept student. After the end of the war with France, he turned to science and exploration on land and at sea. Between 1836 and the end of 1843, he was Lieutenant-Governor of Tasmania. His final task was the North-West Passage to the Pacific. The expedition embarked on Erebus and Terror on 19.05.1845 with 129 officers and men. It disappeared soon afterwards in the arctic waters and the search for it became one of the most taxing tasks of arctic exploration during the Ninteenth Century. He died on 11.6.

John Olive

Clerk on Investigator

Ferdinand Bauer 1760-1847

Natural-history painter on Investigator


crew member of Investigator


crew member of Investigator

Thomas Bell

Midshipman on Investigator

Sherrard P.Lound

Midshipman on Investigator

William Waldegrave, 1st Baron Radstock 1753-1825

entered the British navy in 1766, and after many years of service was third in command at the battle of Cape St.Vincent in 1797. In 1800, he was created an Irish peer as Baron Radstock, and in 1802 he became an Admiral.


a member of the crew of the Investigator?


a member of the crew of the Investigator?


a member of the crew of the Investigator?

Samuel W. Flinders

second lieutenant on Investigator and Matthew Flinders' younger brother

Sir Adam Dummond 1780-1837

Vice Admiral in the Royal Navy

Sir Isaac Coffin Bart. 1759-1839

Vice-admiral, resident commissioner at Sheerness during outfitting of the Investigator. His family originated from the County of Nantucket in Massachusetts, U.S.A.. This is why he founded there in 1827 as a Lancasterian school what became in 1904 the School of Industrial and Manual Training.

Point Culver

The cliffs which "in the lower parts were nearly white" reminded Flinders of the Culver cliffs on the Isle of Wight

Point Dover

The cliffs, 50 miles from Point Culver, recalled for Flinders the white cliffs of Dover

Elizabeth Greenly of Titley Court

was married in 1811 to Sir Isaac Coffin who assumed the name and arms of Greenly

Sibsey, Stickney and Spilsby

Townships in Lincolnshire in the vicinity of Boston. This was the start of Flinders' use of Lincolnshire names which he bestowed in this region and which possibly was a consequence of the disaster at Cape Catastrophy.

William Taylor

Midshipman on Investigator who drowned on 21.02.1802 with Mr. Thistle and six seamen. Flinders writes: Mr. William Taylor, the midshipman of the boat, was a young officer who promised fair to become an ornament to the service, as he was to society by the amiability of his manners and temper. The six seamen had all volunteered for the voyage. They were active and useful young men; and in a small and incomplete ship's company, which has so many duties to perform, this diminuition of our force was heavily felt.

James Gambier Lord Gambier 1756-1833

English admiral, born 13.10. at the Bahamas, where his father was lieutenant-governor, entered the navy in 1767 as a midshipman on board the Yarmouth under the command of his uncle; and, his family interest obtaining for him rapid promotion, he was raised in 1778 to the rank of post-captain. After serving in several actions during the war of the French Revolution, he was appointed governor of Newfoundland. In 1814 he acted in a civil capacity as chief commissioner for negotiating a treaty of peace with the United States. He died on 19.4.


market town and municipal borough on the river Welland in Lincolnshire with long historical background reaching back to the year 449 when, according to Henry of Huntingdon, the Saxons defeated here the Picts and Scots.


Lincolnshire market town on the river Welland with a history reaching back to the Thirteenth Century.


municipal and parliamentary borough of Lincolnshire on the river Witham, is supposed to have been a Roman station.


Lincolnshire market town, probably site of a Roman camp.

John Pitt, 2nd Earl of Chatham 1756-1835

, son of William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham, President of the Admiralty 1791-93.

Curry William Hillier

Commander in the Royal Navy in 1778.

Earl Richard Howe 1726-1799

British Admiral, born 8.3.1726, second son of Emmanuel Scope Howe, Governor of Barbados, and Mary Sophia Charlotte, daughter of the Baroness Kilmansegge, mistress of King George I, a relationship which does much to explain his early rise in the navy. He held deservedly many high positions, especially during the war in America and in England during the Navy rebellion. Died 5.8.

Sir George Young 1732-1810?

Samuel Arden

Captain in the Royal Navy


a parish Axholme, an island in Lincolnshore, between the rivers Treat, Idle and Don.

Philip Yorke 1757-1834

3rd Earl of Harwicke, English admiral, born at Southampton on 31.05. and educated at Cambridge, M.P. for Cambridgeshire, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (1801-1806), F.R.S.

Sir Thomas Troubridge c.1758-1807

, English Admiral, educated at St.Paul's School, London, entered the navy in 1773. After seeing service in the West Indies, he was taken prisoner period by the French for a short in 1794. He commanded the Culloden at the battle of St.Vincent in 1797. From 1801-1804, he was a lord of the Admiralty and was made a rear-admiral just before his retirement. He perished in January 1807 off the coast of Madagascar when his ship Blenheim foundered in a cyclone.

François Rabelais 1490-1553

French humorist, born at Chinon on the Vienne in the Province of Touraine on an uncertain day in an uncertain year. His principal work is Les Grandes et inestimables chroniques du grand et énorme géant Gargantua.

John Murray

,as commander of Lady Nelson, surveyed Western Port and discovered Port Phillip Wind preventing entry into Western port, he circumnavigated King's Island. He returned to Western port on 30.01.1802 and entered Port Phillip on 14.02.1802.

John Schanck 1740-1823

Admiral, inventor of centre-board.

Francis Egerton, 3rd Duke of Bridgewater 1736-1803

originator of British inland navigation, born on 31.05, succeeded to the dukedom at the age of twelve on the death of his brother, the 2nd duke. He devoted his life to the construction of canals for the transport of coal with the assistance of the engineer James Brindley. The success of this undertaking with his personal sacrifices affords an instructive example of that energy and self-denial on which the success of great undertakings so much depends. He died unmarried on 08.03.

James Brindley 1716-1772

English engineer, was born at Thornsett, Derbyshire. His parents were in very humble circumstances, and he received little or no education. At the age of seventeen he was apprenticed to a millwright near Macclesfield, and soon after completing his apprenticeship he set up in business for himself as a wheelwright at Leek, quickly becoming known for his ingenuity and skill in repairing all kinds of machinery. He advised the duke of Bridgewater to construct a canal from Worsley to Manchester. The great success of this canal led to many similar projects. He died at Turnhurst, Staffordshire, on 30.09.

Sir George Jackson

a secretary of the Admiralty

01.05.1770 Cook refers to the death of Forby Sutherland

Last night Forby Sutherland, Seaman, departed this Life, and in the A.M. his body Was buried ashore at the watering place, which occasioned my calling the south point of this bay after his name.

Sir Edward Hawke 1706-1781

entered the navy on 20.02.1720 and served the time required to qualify for a lieutenant's commission on the North American and West Indies Stations. In July 1747, he attained flag rank , and was named second in command of the Channel fleet. In the same year, he was elected M.P. for Portsmouth which re continued to represent for thirty years. In February 1758, he was promoted full admiral. He played a leading part in the war against the French and was first lord of the Admiralty between 1776 and 1781.

Phillip Parker King

this short biography has to wait, as he does not have an entry in the Eleventh Edition of the ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA 1910/11 and I do not have ready access to other sources.

Sir Joseph Banks 1743-1820

was born on 13.02. in Argyle Street, London. As his father was a successful Lincolnshire doctor, who became sheriff of his county and represented Peterborough in Parliament, he was brought up as the son of a rich man. In 1760, he went to Oxford, where he showed a decided taste for natural science and was the means of introducing botanical lectures into the curriculum. In 1764, his father died and left him an ample fortune. From his first expedition to Newfoundland and Labrador in 1766, he returned with a rich collection of plants and insects.

Soon afterwards, Captain Cook was sent by the Government to observe the transit of Venus in the Pacific Ocean. Through the good offices of his friend Lord Sandwich, he obtained leave to join the Endeavour expedition which he had fitted out at his own expense. He induced Dr.Daniel Solander, the distinguished pupil of Linnaeus, to accompany him. He even engaged draughtsmen and painters to delineate such objects of interest as did not admit transportation and preservation. This voyage occupied three years and led to many hardships, but its rich harvest of discovery became a more than adequate compensation. Banks also wanted to join Cook's second expedition on which he spent a great deal of money, engaging assistants and providing necessary equipment, but circumstances did not allow him to do so.

In 1778, Banks succeeded Sir John Pringle as President of the Royal Society, of which he became a Fellow in 1766, and held this position until his death. He was made a Baronet in 1781 and received the Order of the Bath in 1795. In 1797, he was admitted to the Privy Council. He died at Isleworth on 19.06.

Jean-François de Galaup, Comte de Jean-François de Galaup, Comte de La Pérouse 1741-1788

was born at Albi, on 22.08. His father's name was Galaup; he added himself La Pérouse, the name of a small family estate near Albi. At eighteen, he was wounded and made prisoner on board Formidable, captured by Admiral Hawke in 1759. Between 1778 and 1783, he served with distinction in various parts of the world in the war with England. On 01.08.1785, he sailed from Brest, in command of the French Government expedition, commanding himself La Boussole with L'Astrolabe under de Langle. The goal was the North-West Passage, which had been Cook's aim during his last voyage to the North Pacific. He was also instructed to further explore the North-West coast of America, the North-East coasts of Asia, the China and Japan Seas, the Solomon Islands and Australia. Whaling in the Southern Ocean and the fur trade in North America were the ultimate objectives.

He reached Mount St.Elias on the Alaskan coast on 23.06.1786. Bad weather caused him to leave the area, visit the Hawaian Islands and discover on 05.11.1786 Necker Island. On 03.01.1787, he reached Macao on the Asian continent. Subsequently, he visited the Philippines, Japan, Korea and the Chinese Tartary, where he obtained his best results. On 28.06., he reached De Castries Bay, near today's Vladivostok. He landed on 07.09. in Petropavlovsk on Kamchatka, where he was well received on order of the Russian Empress, Catherine II; his messenger Lesseps traveled from there by land to deliver the up to date results of the expedition to Paris. On 08.12., he was in Mauna in the Samoan Islands, where de Langle and ten crew members of the Astrolabe were murdered by natives. He quitted there on 14.12. and reached Botany Bay via the Friendly Islands and Norfolk Island on 26.01.1788. His last letter to the French Ministry of Marine was dated 07.02.1788 and sent from Botany Bay. In 1826, Captain Peter Dillon discovered the wrecks of La Përouse's ships on the reefs of Vanikoro Island, north of the New Hebrides. On 14.03.1828, Dumont d'Urville, another famous French navigator, visited the site and erected there a monument.

Claude Antoine Gaspard Riche

Naturalist of d'Entrecasteux's expedition who got lost for two days at Esperance Bay.