Alexander Collie: Colonial Surgeon, Naturalist & Explorer

Alexander Collie: Colonial Surgeon, Naturalist & Explorer

This item is out of print.


Gwen Chessell


Alexander Collie is the first book-length biography of this remarkable Scottish pioneer who made a pivotal contribution to Western Australia’s early colonisation. Drawing on Collie’s lively correspondence with his brother, Chessell’s meticulous research vividly recreates the harsh conditions endured by Collie and his fellow Swan River colonists. 

As a surgeon aboard the HMS Sulphur, Collie accompanied Lieutenant-Governor James Stirling to Western Australia’s fledgling Swan River Colony in 1829. With the assistance of his Aboriginal guide, Collie’s expeditions across the state’s southwest yielded many botanical, geographical and meteorological discoveries essential to the colony’s expansion and development over subsequent decades. Containing maps and archival images, Alexander Collie also provides new insights into the mind of an innately inquisitive nineteenth-century world traveller and humanist, who sought to bridge the divide between European and Indigenous communities.


Praise for Alexander Collie:

A worthy memorial to Collie.

Book details

FORMAT: Paperback
EXTENT: 224 pages
SIZE: 230 x 153 mm
ISBN: 9780980296532
CATEGORY: Australian StudiesBiography and AutobiographyGeneral Non-fictionGwen ChessellStaples Fund,