Grateful American® Foundation

What adventure did Charles Darwin embark on today in 1835?

September 15th

PSM_V57_D097_Hms_beagle_in_the_straits_of_magellanSeptember 15, 1835 — Charles Darwin and the H.M.S. Beagl reached the Galapagos Islands today. His five-year voyage is legendary, as insights gained on his trip to exotic places greatly influenced his masterwork, Origin of Species.

Of course, Darwin didn’t actually formulate his theory of evolution while sailing around the world aboard the Royal Navy ship. But the exotic plants and animals he encountered challenged his thinking and led him to consider scientific evidence in new ways.

H.M.S. Beagle actually sailed on a lengthy scientific mission several years before Darwin came into the picture. A warship carrying 10 cannons, it sailed in 1826 to explore the coastline of South America. The ship had an unfortunate episode when its captain sank into a depression, perhaps caused by the isolation of the voyage, and committed suicide.

Words of Wisdom

It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

— Charles Darwin