Tracks Of McKinlay & Party Across Australia [1863]


By John Davis

First printing of Davis’ Journal describing McKinlay’s 1861-2 expedition across Australia [as edited by William Westgarth]

In stock


  • Subtitled Edited from Mr Davis’ Manuscript Journal; With An Introductory View Of The Recent Australian Explorations Of McDouall Stuart, Burke & Wills, Landsborough, Etc., By William Westgarth
  • John McKinlay led one of a number of expeditions in 1861-62 aiming to establish a North-South route through the middle of Australia “from sea to sea”. John Davis was a member of his party.
  • First Edition [Sampson Low, Son, & Co, London, 1863] in excellent condition overall
  • Dark green blind-stamped cloth boards, lettered in gold on spine, shelfworn with minor cloth abrasions at corners, spine ends bumped with a couple of tiny nicks, general rubbing; some signatures have come loose from lower string binding but remain firmly bound; xvi, 408pp + 16pp advertisements; frontispiece + 14 other illustrations as called for – many with tissue guards that have protected plates resulting in little if any foxing
  • Large folded map in rear sleeve as called for in Ferguson [showing the Routes of John McKinlay, Stuart, Burke, Landsborough, and Walker, across the Continent of Australia] in excellent condition, minor discolouration to external folded segments
  • Ownership stamps of Thomas Gill [inner board & ffep], likely that public servant [1849-1923] who “was an enthusiastic collector of Australiana, reflecting his interest in Australian history and geography, Aboriginals, exploration and the history of his State. He compiled his?Bibliography of South Australia [1886] and Bibliography of the Northern Territory [1903] largely from his own library” [Australian Dictionary Of Biography] – as such, this book is a likely reference. It has been held in the Goyder family [descending from Gill’s fellow public servants] for over a century.
  • Additional photograph of McKinlay appears as albumen print pasted onto additional, tipped-in leaf with border and attribution to J. Taylor [James Taylor occupied a studio in Gawler, SA from 1871-1885]. This is likely the frontispiece from another rare book – The Gawler Handbook by George E. Loyau [1880] although Gill may have sourced this directly from Taylor as their paths would very likely have crossed.