Darwin’s cabin

cabin plan
Darwin's annotated plan of his cabin. CUL DAR 44, f. 16

In 1825 the Beagle was modified for surveying work by the addition of a poop deck over the rear part of the quarterdeck.  It was in the poop cabin beneath that Darwin worked, seated with his microscope at the chart table and surrounded by useful cupboards; and it was here, over the left side of the table, that he would sling his hammock whenever he needed to ‘take the horizontal’ in order to alleviate his seasickness or to get some sleep. After Darwin’s death, B. J. Sulivan, a lieutenant on the Beagle, reminisced about the voyage in this letter to Darwin’s son Francis and included a rough sketch showing the position of Darwin’s hammock in the poop cabin.