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Photographs supplied by Bryan Hardy

The portrait bust of Nicholas Baudin commemorates the bicentennial of the Baudin expedition.

In October 1800 Baudin was selected to lead an expedition to map the coast of Australia. He had two ships, Le Géographe and Le Naturaliste, and was accompanied by nine zoologists and botanists, including Jean Baptiste Leschenault de la Tour. He reached Australia in May 1801, and in April 1802 met Matthew Flinders, also engaged in charting the coastline, in Encounter Bay. Baudin then stopped at Sydney for supplies, then in Tasmania, before continuing north to Timor. Baudin then sailed for home, stopping at Mauritius, where he died of tuberculosis.



Address:Bonnefoi Boulevarde, Bunbury, 6230
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.316944
Long: 115.639167
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Sculpture
Monument Theme:Landscape


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 2nd March, 2003
Front Inscription

Government Of France

Baudin Expedition 
Terra Australis
(1800 - 1804)

On the 19th October 1800, the Baudin Expedition set sail from Le Havre in Normandy, France with two ships, the Géographe and the Naturaliste.  Captain Nicolas Baudin`s second-in-command was Emmanuel Hamelin.  25 scientists were engaged from the domains of astronomy, botany, zoology, mineralogy, horticulture and geography.

The ships anchored at present day Geographe Bay on 31st May 1801.  First contacts were made here with the Indigenous peoples.  Midshipman Vasse was drowned. Separated by storms the two Captains charted the Wa coast independently, from Cape Leeuwin to Joseph Bonaparte Gulf, including the Swan River and Heirisson Island, named for one of the ship`s officers. Both ships carried out extensive work at Shark Bay.

Baudin`s Expedition secured the most valuable natural history collection of its time - more than 200,000 specimens of flora and fauna were collected of which 2542 were new to science, doubling the number of known species.  It was the first time that live animals were transported which later formed a small Australian zoo at the Empress Josephin`s summer palce at Malmaison on the outskirts of Paris.

The Expedition was responsible for hundreds of French place names in Australia, of which about 240 are still in use in WA. Baudin charted nearly two thirds of the Australian coastline, filling gaps on the rudimentary Dutch maps, making the first detailed charts of the west and north west coasts of Western Australia and of the south-eastern coast of Van Diemen`s Land.

A celebrated chance encounter on the 8th april 1802 with Matthew Flinders gave the named to Encounter Bay, SA. After resting in the young colony at Port Jackson, Baudin returned to WA, carrying out extensive research at King George Sound. Baudin died of tuberclosis on 16th September 1803 at Ile de France (Mauritius) on the return journey.  The Expedition now under the command of Milius returned to Lorient in Brittanny in March 1804.

Terra Australis 2001 WA Association Inc  
Centenary of Federation Western Australia

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au