Mr and Mrs Orchard’s scientific skills have made possible, what seemed to The Allan Cunningham Project Team, impossible.
The Allan Cunningham Project has just received a copy of Tony and Tessa Orchard’s latest publication: The Australian Botanical Journals of Allan Cunningham. The book is another example of the authors’ tenacity in making Australian Colonial History accessible.
Many years ago, when we started The Allan Cunningham Project, our plan was to locate and photography the plants that Allan Cunningham mentioned in his official journals. It didn’t take long for our team to realise that we had chosen an impossible task for a group of people without any knowledge of botany. It was fun trying. Matching historical botanical names with their equivalent in the world of 2018 requires a scientist, a botanist.
It was with reluctance, The Allan Cunningham Project Team, put their desire for Allan Cunningham’s plant references, on the shelf. We didn’t have the skills required. Now, independent of The Allan Cunningham Project, two people, TONY AND TESSA ORCHARD, are working diligently, studying our intrepid Plant Explorer’s journals, and letters, and transcribing them, and matching historical botanical names with their equivalent in the world of 2018.
Dr and Mrs Orchard’s scientific skills have made possible, what seemed to The Allan Cunningham Project Team, impossible. So far, they have published four books (with more to come), filled with intricate details of Allan Cunningham’s discoveries, and his life.
A.E. and T.A. Orchard’s books are precious treasures holding within their covers the details of a time in Australian Colonial History when the countryside was filled with the floral and fauna of a pristine wilderness, and when the new colony was building dwellings, exploring the countryside, importing goods, and populating towns with British people, along with their scientific knowledge, weaponry, government, laws, and agricultural skills.
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