Flynn Lake, Macquarie Island

Hobart was in Flynn celebration mode and this image is Flynn Lake, Macquarie Island.

This lake was named after Professor Theodore Thomson Flynn, father of actor Errol Flynn, who accompanied John King Davis on the spring cruise of the Aurora, from Hobart to Macquarie Island, Auckland Island and return to Hobart from 12th November to 14th December 1912.

Professor Flynn arrived in Hobart in February 1909 to take up position as first lecturer in Biology at the University of Tasmania. In 1911 Professor Flynn was appointed to the chair of the Ralston Professor of Biology at the University of Tasmania, with the support of Dr E. L. Crowther. He also became a trustee of the Botanical Gardens and the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery.

Little is known about Flynn's time on the Aurora and his time on Macquarie Island other than it took him nine days to find his sea legs. John King Davis was not very complementary in his diary regarding Flynn and his assistant, who initially appeared as "to have come on a cheap holiday, they both lay on the hatch while I and the mate have been working all day"

Flynn was to have written up a report of his investigations on the Aurora's spring voyage, however, this has not appeared in print and the only legacy we have of his time with the Australasian Antarctic Expedition is Flynn Lake, Macquarie Island.

As for Errol he spent 16 years in Hobart, and despite his up and downs, his father still named one of his discoveries after him, a tidepool fish Gibbonsia erroli


Louise Crossley editor Trial by Ice. The Antarctic Journals of John King Davis
John King Davis With the Aurora in the Antarctic 1911-1914

Further information: People of Antarctic history