FP100: No. 64

Commemorative plaque for John McDouall Stuart of Dysart
Commemorative plaque for John McDouall Stuart of Dysart

John McDouall Stuart

A plaque in the ground opposite the birthplace and former museum in his honour is all that remains to commemorate one of the world’s most intrepid explorers, John MacDouall Stuart.

However in Australia, where he became the first man to cross the mainland from south to north and back, after six previous attempts, he became a huge celebrity, with statues, memorials and streets named after him.

Stuart’s explorations resulted in the Australian overland telegraph line being built and the main route from Port Augusta to Darwin established, now known as the Stuart Highway in his honour.

The MacDouall Stuart Museum closed in 2009 due to a lack of visitors, and is now a holiday flat.

Dysart Trust has designed and funded a new plaque to be put on its wall in the near future.