New library research guide – HMS Beagle

We all know about Charles Darwin but what about the Beagle we hear you ask..

Most people know the HMS Beagle as the ship on which Charles Darwin’s sailed on his world famous voyage that was a catalyst to developing his theory of evolution.  At the Vaughan Evans Library we thought it was time that the Beagle emerged from Darwin’s shadow.

HMS Beagle is a new library research guide for those who would like to find out more about this small survey vessel which played such an important part in Australian and world history. The guide covers printed and online sources and also includes information on crew,  logs  and accounts of voyages,  Darwin’s voyage  and recent archaeological expeditions to find it’s final resting place.

Find it and other research guides in the Library pages on the Museum’s website.

Making HMS Beagle - see the construction of a model for the Museum here on the Museum blog.

Library reopens to the public

Library compactus under construction

Library compactus under construction

The Vaughan Evans Library reopened today after a temporary closure with a slightly new look.

The book collection has been rehoused into an electronic compactus unit. Not only is our storage space more efficient but an unexpected bonus is it’s now easier to locate books on the shelves. No more cramped aisles and bookshelves and automatic lighting above each bay.

The Library is open to researchers by appointment 10 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday and the first Saturday of each month. To make an appointment contact Gillian Simpson our Public Enquiries Librarian on 02 9298 3731 or email

Library shares bookmarks with you

The Vaughan Evans Library is now publishing bookmarks on the museum blog.

“The Library’s Bookmarks” section at the right hand side of the screen contains the most recent bookmarks we’ve added to social bookmarking site

As Australian’s we’re aware that to access many of the primary resources used for maritime and related family history research can often involve people in long and expensive journeys. Either here or to their state libraries. Sometimes even interstate or overseas. So we began by seeking out digital versions of some of those hard to find texts and reference books for you.

We’ll be adding to our bookmark collection regularly and hope to share with you sites that we work with all the time.

We hope you’ll find them a useful and convenient research tool too and want to share them with others.

So visit the velibrary at

Australian rowing gold

It’s gold in the rowing for Drew Ginn and Duncan Free and we’d like to highlight a gold medal rowing collection held by the Vaughan Evans Library. Put together over a lifetime by former Olympic rowing team captain, Kevyn Parke Webb (1924-1991) this collection covers the period from the mid 19th century to the 1980’s. Amongst the many volumes you’ll find rowing textbooks, club histories, handbooks, regattas and rare specialist rowing periodicals. Visit the Vaughan Evans Library at the ANMM website