Originally written by TAMARA HOWMAN
CURATOR of the exhibition Matthew Flinders: The Ultimate Voyage, Paul Brunton, will today be in the Portland library, where the exhibition is on display.
Mr Brunton has been travelling with the exhibition and will speak about Flinders’ life and on putting the exhibition together.
“It was very time consuming, but also very exciting to be able to bring all the pieces together for the exhibition,” he said.
The exhibition in the library is a regional version which will only be visiting Portland, Warrnambool and Phillip Island, while the metropolitan version of the exhibition is visiting capital cities.
Mr Brunton has brought a number of original items with him, that will be on display for today and tomorrow only. These include original letters, drawings of flora and pages from Flinders’ private diary.
“(There are also) two beautiful sterling silver spoons dating back to 1800 that were used to eat old salted meat.”
Mr Brunton described Flinders as methodical, affectionate but also arrogant.
“He wasn’t very tactful to the French Governor,” which he said is most likely why Flinders spent many years as a prisoner on Mauritius.
He said Flinders was also “very dogged and persistent”, which was why his maps were so detailed and werein use for well over 100 years.
Mr Brunton, who works at the State Library of New South Wales, has studied Flinders for a number of years and recently published 110 of his letters.
Mr Brunton will give a talk at 5pm today at the library, and the free exhibition will remain on display until June 9.
Portland historian Bernard Wallace is most impressed by the exhibition, and recommends it to all Ñ see story PAGE 6.