The Riddle of the Rivers: Thomas Livingston Mitchell


Thursday, 30 August 2018 - 11am to 12pm


  • Friend: $20.00
  • Guest: $28.00

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State Library NSW

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The Riddle of the Rivers with Paul Brunton
Thomas Livingston Mitchell and the Great North-Western Flowing River, 1831-2, 1835, 1836, and 1845-6

Join the Library's Emeritus Curator, Paul Brunton OAM, as he takes us on a journey following three intrepid explorers and fascinating individuals who, under trying conditions, tried to solve this riddle: John Oxley, Charles Sturt and Thomas Livingston Mitchell.

This lecture: Mitchell systematically surveyed the river systems of eastern Australia in three landmark expeditions in the 1830s, and in 1845-46 surveyed thousands of hectares of the interior of Queensland while seeking in vain confirmation of his theory that a great river flowed north-west to the Gulf of Carpentaria. He convinced himself he had found it and named it the Victoria, a name to suit its majesty. But it dries up in droughts and does not enter the Gulf. It was later renamed the Barcoo.

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