A page from John Cotton's "Some Account of the Colony of Port Phillip", showing a page with text and an illustration of a Platypus bill and spur. John Cotton 1801-1849.
Letter on single sheet of paper folded into four, written (presumably) by ornithologist John Cotton to his brother circa 1834-1848. It begins ' The principle peculiarity in Australian Zoology is the total absence of large quadrupeds, and the paucity of the smaller birds...' The inside folds contain two sketches of mammals, described as a flying 'opossum' and a rat; the back illustrates the beak and foot of a 'very curious duck'. The letter includes descriptions of native animals eaten by local Aborigines.
From an archive of writings by and about ornithologist John Cotton. The archive includes his diary, manuscripts and sketches, as well as transcriptions and later research notes. John Cotton's writings are likely to have come to Museum Victoria in the early 1970s during research by Allan McEvey, then Curator of Birds at Museum Victoria.