Charles Wells & George JonesPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Stephen Warren

The monument over the grave, commemorates Charles Frederick Wells and George Lindsay Jones who died in the exploration of the North West of Australia by the Calvert Expedition in 1896 and 1897.  The monument was erected by the Royal National Geographic Society of Victoria.

The expedition was financed by Albert Frederick Calvert, a London based mining engineer, and conducted under the auspices of the South Australian Branch of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia. Its main aim was to build on the achievements of the 1891 Elder Expedition in exploring a still largely unknown inland area of Western Australia, mainly in the Great Sandy Desert. Expedition personnel included Larry Wells (leader); Charles Wells (his cousin and the second in command); George Jones (mineralogist and photographer); George Keartland (naturalist); James Trainor; with Dervish Bejah and Said Ameer (camel drivers) and 20 camels.

The expedition departed Mullewa in Western Australia on 13 June 1896, heading north towards the Fitzroy River in the West Kimberley. By 21 July they had reached the limits of previously explored territory and known water supplies. In early August they were advancing into the Great Sandy Desert and having problems with the availability of water and with camels falling sick through the consumption of poisonous plants. In October Charles Wells and Jones left to make a side journey towards the north-west, intending to rejoin the others later. On 9 November the main party reached the track from Derby to the Fitzroy Crossing, and Quanbun Station on 13 November. Concern for the two missing members of the expedition led to a series of search parties, with the mummified bodies of Charles Wells and Jones, who had perished from extreme heat and lack of water, eventually being found on 27 May 1897. George Jones’ diary, found with his body, indicated that they had died on about 21 November 1896 while following in the tracks of the main party. The bodies were returned to Adelaide where a state funeral was held for them on 18 July 1897.


Address:North Road, North Road Cemetery, Prospect, 5082
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -34.889641
Long: 138.607794
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Grave
Monument Theme:People


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:September-1898
Front Inscription

Honour the brave

The Royal Geographical Society Victoria

- Mourns the death of -

C. F. Wells and G. L. Jones who perished in the exploration of

- North West Australia 1896 -

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