RECORD: Darwin, C. R. [Hobart Town field notes]. (2.1836) CUL-DAR40.100-101 Transcribed by Gordon Chancellor (Darwin Online,

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by Gordon Chancellor, typed by Jan Nicholas. Transcription corrected by Kees Rookmaaker, corrections by John van Wyhe 4.2011. RN1

NOTE: See the annotations in the version of this document published in: Banks, M. R. and D. Leaman eds. 1999. Charles Darwin's Field Notes on the geology of Hobart Town — A modern appraisal. Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania 133(1): 29-50, Text.

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Reproduced with the permission of the Royal Society of Tasmania, the Syndics of Cambridge University Library and William Huxley Darwin.



Friday 12th [1836] — Limestone Quarry — Stratified dip about 50° — occasional pebbles of quartzose rock — cellular linear cavities — pale brown — pure limestone — layers of flint — very numerous impressions of leaves. said to be different from present same — Whole hill covered by very curious formation, balls of trappean rocks — decomposed, so as to resemble wacke, calcareous aluminous matter (like St Jago) few pebbles — broad fissure in underlying rock & filled up — Volcanic eruption somewhere near subsequent to upheaval but beneath water — Very limited formation — sm. creek

Sandstone in Government domain, not stratified very free — I certainly believe, the 3d formation. — Broken by trap rocks: — There is a hard siliceous sandstone quarried high up, may belong to the older —

Shells in the Government domain. 60 or 80 ft generally round pebbles — much to be said on both sides

30 or 40 — —small shells. — wonderful [numerous] — yet has not quite appearance of upraised beach —Certainly much shells brought by natives — piles stone hatchets — But these may have been upheaved: Bay formed by low land — shells, beach — pebbles of with Serpula

100 verso


Blue Limestone in old formation

12-15 ft above present high water — Before However, the low land had formed Harbor considerable fetch — Yet [a symbol like a "Z" with a vertical middle limb] & these facts inclined me to believe, — trifling rise — Mr F. —

oysters have all disappeared within 2 years

Mem. Ascidia in Chiloe only [known] with edible animals — Earthquakes

Centre of Island lofty greenstone — divided by valley of the Derwent — On North side grand formation of limestone & some conglomerate, & hard clay slate [words or letters off page] see fossils same formation — Limestones & conglomerates replacing beds stones.— Again on North Coast. Basaltic formation — Here the old formation probably extends to Isd Santa Maria — Coal probably 3d formation — On the NE. extensive granite

on the SW. quartz formation — origin of pebbles in old formation — Centre fossil wood in quartz Agate pebbles — Salinas — plains probably some diluv modern or Tertiary series —

Monday 15th — I see the Greenstone of 1st day consists of a dyke, about 100 yards wide — the strata on opposite side; almost a coal — (Mem: Sandstone & black lines in Quarry) vertical and disturbed: — No doubt [word or letter?] Arthurs Coal — Again along the road; greenstones alternate with sedimentary rocks — Mem: case on coast



in Government domain = limestone foot of M. Wellington opposite side of my ascent — mass of strata occurring with organic strata — Blue Blackish brown compact crystalline; occurs with slaty impure limestone — Organic remains chiefly Terebratula impressions of a Pecten & beds composed of small oysters, like at Isd of Maria — Dendritic manganese — Corallines chiefly occur in the siliceous strata. — Stratification not quite regular — very rare pebble — uneven stratum of a white pulverulent calcareous aluminous substance, used to burn with limestone — singular aspect:

on road to New Norfolk — we met the very same stone — This formation much stratified — & strata not very much tilted, only very little — Perhaps S.W. ? — (Whole town & valley of Derwent, newer formation). —

old set, alternate with much trappean rocks — At New Norfolk, white rocks, similar to those of Kangaroo point — Some more brittle, coarse & siliceous ([blank])

Some few pebbles, all siliceous & greater number pure white quartz: Higher parts of hill hard reddish sandstone:— General occurrence: —

Very frequent beds of shells from 6 to 10 ft above the breaking of highest tides, on shores of Derwent, where now the water is either fresh or at most brackish & no shells exist

I think an elevation could account for this change of level & state of water — form of small, flat-bottomed creek line valleys: [sketch]banks of shingle interstratified with such shells. —

101 verso

Friday 12th — Called on Surveyor General Mr Frankland. — Walked to lime kilns & Government Garden =. Sandstone traversed Dined with him in evening.

Saturday 13th — Crossed ferry — Rode to examine beds of shells — Very nice country. [However] returned to. — Dined Attorney General

very pleasant Musical perf[ormance]. very comfortable large numerous rooms, beautifully furnished

Very pleasant guest party —

Sunday 14th. Staied on board writing letters Stopped for want of sun

Monday 15th — Mr Frankland came on board. Went out riding with him — stormy day — dined in evening most pleasant: =

Tuesday 16th — Went in coach to New Norfolk banks of the Derwent — farms — very nice country: mountainous — woody = Walked from town & fell asleep beneath a tree. —

Wednesday — 17th Sailed — Mr Duff —

on the whole like Hobart town better

Blacks removed — excellent police — probably less crime than England. —

N.B. Quartz pebbles & siliceous sandstone in F. W. limestone

Hobart Town

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