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Portrait of John McDouall Stuart, April 1863

Reference Code: GBR/0115/RCS/Y308C

Scope and Contents

56 x 68 mm. Showing a seated head and shoulders portrait of the explorer. Around the perimeter of the print, is printed 'Professor Hall, Photo: Adelaide, Apr: 1863.' Stuart (1815-1866) was born in Fife and emigrated to South Australia in 1839. His first exploring expedition was with Charles Sturt in 1844, after which he practised as a surveyor until 1858. In that year he explored the Lake Torrens and Lake Gairdner hinterland, discovering rich grazing land of which he was later granted one thousand square miles by the government. He made further expeditions in 1859 and 1860, in the latter year reaching the centre of the continent. After an unsuccessful attempt to cross the continent in 1861, he succeeded in 1862. Stuart died in England while returning to visit his sister and is buried in Kensal Green Cemetery.


  • Creation: 1863-04


Conditions Governing Access

Unless restrictions apply, the collection is open for consultation by researchers using the Manuscripts Reading Room at Cambridge University Library. For further details on conditions governing access please contact Information about opening hours and obtaining a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket is available from the Library's website (

Biographical / Historical

Robert Hall (c. 1821-1866) was one of the first commercial photographers in South Australia. Hall purchased his first camera from the artist S.T. Gill who had practised professionally for a brief time before joining the Horrocks exploring expedition. Hall set up a studio in Currie Street, Adelaide in 1846 and later in the same year took the first photographs of Perth, visiting the town for eight days in November. The spurious use of the title 'professor' was fairly common among nineteenth century photographers.


1 item(s) (1 image)

Language of Materials


Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Fair condition, some overall fading, and slight waterstaining.

Existence and Location of Copies

CN 1081.

This collection is available on microfiche: Australasia, fiche number 9.


This portrait appears as the frontispiece to: Hardman, William (1865), ed. 'Explorations in Australia: The journals of John McDouall Stuart during the years 1858, 1859, 1860, 1861, & 1862, when he fixed the centre of the continent and successfully crossed it from sea to sea,' London: Saunders, Otley, and Co.

For more details of photography in Australia, see: Cato, Jack (1955), 'The story of the camera in Australia,' pp. 170-2, Melbourne: Georgian House.


This collection level description was entered by WS using information from the original typescript catalogue.


Hall, Robert, d 1866, photographer

Includes index.
2006-10-18 14:31:06+00:00
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
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Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom