James Taylor 2008. The Voyage of the Beagle. Conway Maritime: London, 192 pp.

Wonderfully conceived book on aspects of the Beagle voyage that I have always wanted to know more about, in particular The Origin & Design of HMS Beagle (Chapter 1), The Art of Surveying at Sea (Chapter 5) and Earle & Martens: FitzRoy’s Painting Men (Chapter 6). Richly illustrated and referenced. Look out for a 2nd-hand copy, and also for HMS Beagle: Survey Ship Extraordinary by Karl Heinz Marquardt although 2nd-hand copies are ridiculously expensive.

Interesting to know that no detailed plans for the Beagle survive and anyway she was apparently modified along the way by the builders. The Beagle was launched on 11 May 1820 (closing in on 200 years ago) and her keel and lower timbers probably still exist in the mud of the River Roach where she finished her service as a coast watch vessel on a permanent mooring.

HMS Beagle by Conrad Martens