Story: Early mapping

Chart of Lauriston (Doubtless Bay), 1769

This chart, published in 1781, was compiled from the original manuscript by Jean François Marie de Surville, who arrived in New Zealand aboard the St Jean-Baptiste in 1769. He rounded the northern tip of New Zealand, travelling east, at the same time that James Cook was sailing westwards in the same waters, but the two vessels did not meet. Surville anchored in Doubtless Bay (which he named Lauriston Bay) and remained there for around a fortnight, hoping to cure his many sick crewmen. This chart is one of only two he produced from his short stay. In an odd twist, it became the first official chart of New Zealand to be published by the British Admiralty.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: MapColl 832.11aj/1781/Acc.543

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Melanie Lovell-Smith, 'Early mapping - French charts before 1840', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 21 April 2024)

Story by Melanie Lovell-Smith, published 24 Sep 2007