Companion Volumes

The Calvert Expedition, Charles Wells and George Jones

Larry Wells was in charge of what was known as the Calvert Expedition in 1896-97.  While crossing the Great Sandy Desert he split his party at Separation Well.  Charles Wells and George Jones left for the north-west.

Larry Wells (1860-1938)

They intended to rendezvous with the main party at Joanna Springs.  This oasis in the desert was known only from a description in Colonel Warburton’s report, made 23 years previously. Larry Wells was unable to locate Joanna Springs and pushed onto the Fitzroy River, the agreed alternative rendezvous point.

Wells and Jones did not turn up at the Fitzroy and search parties were mounted.

Nat Buchanan joined the search as did William Rudall.  Rudall’s explorations while searching for the missing explorers revealed a huge area of previously unrecorded country. David Carnegie, who had arrived in Halls Creek after his desert journey from Wiluna, held his party ready to join the search but was not required.

During one of his searches Wells determined that the location of Joanna Springs, the first rendezvous point, was incorrect by 15 kilometres. It was more than six months before the bodies of Charles Wells and George Jones were found. They were returned to Adelaide for a State funeral.

The Journal of the Calvert Expedition is available at Hesperian Press. It is a Companion Volume to the Western Australia Exploration series.

Kim Epton
Series Editor

Posted by Kim Epton in Companion Volumes, 0 comments