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Paul Brunton: Finding Islands of My Own: Phillp Parker King, the 1st internationally renowned Australian
Join Emeritus Curator of the State Library, Paul Brunton AM as he takes us through the life, explorations and eminent career of Phillip Parker King, drawing on the extensive original collections of papers, drawings and watercolours held in the State Library of NSW.
Lecture 3: Phillip Parker King - A most admirable Australian
King returned to Sydney in 1832, living at his estate ‘Dunheved’ at St Mary’s. He took an active part in colonial life and culture: serving in the Legislative Council; writing scientific papers; establishing observatories; promoting education. Charles Darwin visited him in 1836 when Beagle arrived in Sydney. In 1837-38, King made an expedition to the Murrumbidgee River. He also made surveys in Parramatta, Newcastle and Port Stephens. From 1839, for a decade, he was Resident Commissioner of the Australian Agricultural Company and moved to ‘Tahlee’ on the shores of Port Stephens. He arranged a pension for Matthew Flinders’ widow. In 1855, he was promoted Rear Admiral and died, at his home Grantham Villa, North Sydney, in February 1856. He was farewelled with the honours due to a serving admiral of the blue in a magnificent ceremony, recorded in paint by Conrad Martens, fit for a prince of the realm.
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