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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

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Henry Wade

c. 1841
an unknown artist

oil on paperboard (frame: 31.0 cm x 25.7 cm, support: 23.8 cm x 18.3 cm)

Henry Wade (1810–1854), surveyor, came to New South Wales in 1841 following a request from the governor, Sir George Gipps, for surveyors to assist with the mapping of the rapidly expanding colony. Posted to Moreton Bay, Wade drew up a plan for the town of Brisbane and also planned the site of Ipswich. In 1846, he was sent to Melbourne to prepare for the surveying of a border between the Port Phillip district and South Australia. Wade and his assistant, Edward White, commenced the first section of the border survey in early April 1847. By early August, they had marked out almost 200 kilometres, but were forced to abandon the project when their supplies ran out. Wade was then appointed surveyor for Portland, working in this role until being recalled to Melbourne in 1854. He died while surveying in the area of Yangardook, near Gisborne, in July 1854, leaving a wife and six children. In 1865, it was established that Wade and White, having incomplete information at the time, had started their 1847 survey of the South Australian border more than two miles to the west of the designated starting point of 141° longitude. South Australia later made a number of attempts to have the border moved east until it was established in 1914 that the so-called ‘Wade/White Line’ should remain the official boundary between South Australia and Victoria.

Gift of the Wade and Hannah families 2013

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

Henry Wade (age 31 in 1841)

Donated by

Stephen Bailey (1 portrait)

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency