Volunteers dig up tales of wild weather and insect plagues

With south-eastern Australia in the midst of wet La Niña conditions and Victoria suffering locust plagues, a team of SEARCH project volunteers has discovered early settlers battled many of the same extremes. This heavy rainfall has created perfect conditions for insects such as the locusts that are currently swarming in south-eastern Australia. Australia's early settlers … Continue reading Volunteers dig up tales of wild weather and insect plagues

SEARCH volunteers unearth vital climate data

A team of volunteers at the State Library of New South Wales has been hard at work sourcing valuable information about climate conditions in the early years of the colony at Sydney. The volunteers have been examining editions of Australia's first newspaper, The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser, looking for information about weather … Continue reading SEARCH volunteers unearth vital climate data

Salvaging sunken treasure

The State Library of New South Wales has published a feature on the SEARCH project in their quarterly SL Magazine. In the article, lead researcher Joelle Gergis describes how the project is drawing on the wealth of information available in the State Library of New South Wales' First Fleet journals collection. Download a PDF copy … Continue reading Salvaging sunken treasure

Citizen scientists help create digital record of our climate past

The SEARCH project will draw on the expertise of volunteers to build a comprehensive online database of early Australian meteorological records and historical accounts of weather events. Volunteers will work out of our partner libraries, The State Library of Victoria, The State Library of New South Wales and the National Library of Australia to help … Continue reading Citizen scientists help create digital record of our climate past

Discovering Australia’s first weather record

As a young American researcher working in Australia in the late 1970s, Robert McAfee made a startling discovery that would have a huge impact on Australian Climate History research, the weather diary of Lieutenant William Dawes. This is his story. When I was a grad student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison I received a telegram … Continue reading Discovering Australia’s first weather record