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Biographical entry Blake, Leslie Russell (1890 - 1918)

28 October 1890
Hawthorn, Victoria, Australia
3 October 1918
Antarctic explorer and Geologist


Sir Leslie Blake was a Geologist and Cartographer who went on the Australasian Antarctic Expedition of 1911-1914. He was involved in a survey of Macquarie Island, the harvesting of penguins for oil and the collection of geological specimens. Blake was one of the five who stayed another year at Macquarie Island (1915). To attend the expedition he had to obtain leave from his employer the Geological Survey Department of Brisbane. Blake was killed in France just before the Armistice.



1907 -
Career position - Cadet, Geological Survey Office, Queensland
1911 - 1914
Career position - Cartographer and Geologist for Macquarie Island team, Australasian Antarctic Expedition
1914 - 1918
Career position - Assistant Geologist, Geological Survey Office, Queensland
1915 - 1918
Career position - Served with the Australian Imperial Forces

Archival resources

South Australian Museum Archives

  • Leslie Russell Blake - Records, 1911 - 1915, 15DM, 105AAE; South Australian Museum Archives. Details

State Library of Victoria, Australian Manuscripts Collection

  • Leslie Russell Blake - Records, 1911 - 1914, MS 9551/74; State Library of Victoria, Australian Manuscripts Collection. Details

Published resources


  • Dartnall, Herbert J. G., Lost in the Mists: Leslie Russel Blake, Mawson's Cartographer and Hero of Pozière (Melbourne: Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2014), 382 pp. Details

Journal Articles

  • Bateman, Roger and Nunn, Elizabeth, 'Leslie Russell Blake: orphan, geologist, Macquarie Island expeditioner and decorated artillery officer at Mouquet Farm', Newsletter, Earth Sciences History Group, 45 (2018), 1-9. Details
  • Dartnall, H. J. G., Ward, N., Selkirk, P. M., Adamson, D. A. and Pharaoh, M., 'The influence of L. R. Blake, pioneering sub-Antarctic geographer and geologist, on the topographical mapping of Macquarie Island', Polar Record, 37 (201) (2001), 143-50. Details
  • Dartnall, Herbert J. G., 'Antarctic vignettes VI: Leslie Russell Blake - Mawson's forgotten geologist', Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania, 146 (2012), 57-62. Details


McCarthy, G.J.