Profession: Botanist and explorer
Why Famous: A renowned naturalist and botanist, Banks first made a name for himself on a 1766 expedition to the territories of Newfoundland and Labrador, where he wrote the first descriptions of those areas' plant and animal life in Linnean taxonomy form.
Banks is best known for his role in Captain James Cook's first voyage between 1768 and 1771. During this voyage Banks helped accrue the first major collection of Australian fauna, as well as visiting other lands including New Zealand, then part of the 'Terra Australis Incognita' or unknown southern land.
After the voyage Banks returned to England where he advised George III on the creation of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
- 1779-03-23 Botanist Joseph Banks (36) weds Dorothea Hugessen
- 1768-08-25 Captain James Cook departs from Plymouth, England, on his first voyage on board the Endeavour, bound for the Pacific Ocean
- 1770-04-28 British Captain James Cook, aboard the Endeavour, lands at Botany Bay in Australia
- 1771-07-12 James Cook sails Endeavour back to Downs, England
- 1800-03-20 Alessandro Volta reports his discovery of the electric battery in a letter to Joseph Banks, president of the Royal Society of London
- BANKS, Sir Joseph - Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand
- Banks, Sir Joseph (1743–1820) - Australian Dictionary of Biography