All About this Website

Who created this website?

This website was created by me, David Leff. I am an amateur scholar of the History of Science, with a focus on scientific developments during the Victorian era (around 1835 to 1900).


How did I get the idea to create this website?

I have had a passing interest in Charles Darwin since I was a boy, but all I ever knew was that he developed some sort of theory of evolution and wrote a few good books on the subject.

During the summer of 1998 I went on a six week holiday to England and Wales and in my travels I ended up visiting many places related to the life of Charles Darwin. It was during my rambling about the English countryside that it occurred to me just how little I knew about who Darwin was.

Upon returning to the states I resolved to learn more about Darwin, so I bought Desmond & Moore’s “Darwin - The Life of a Tormented Evolutionist.” The more I read the more I wanted to know about this fascinating individual. I noticed that the text made heavy use of the “Correspondence of Charles Darwin” series of books, so I bought Volume-1 and devoured it as quickly as I could. Anyway, to make a long story short, I bought more volumes of the Correspondence, many of the Darwin works edited by Paul Barrett & R.B. Freeman, Charles Darwin’s Notebooks, and so on. I now have over forty books by or about Charles Darwin, several dozen journal papers about him, and over one thousand photographs of places related to his life.


Why was this website created? was created to fill a niche on the internet. It seemed to me a shame that a gentleman who has had such a profound influence on humanity did not have a website devoted exclusively to him. While there are a few excellent websites that touch on few aspects of Darwin’s life, none of them really get into the details of who Charles Darwin actually was, deep down on a personal level. This is the primary focus of my website. Other goals of this website are -

[1] To provide as much detail of the life and times of Charles Darwin as possible. My spare time is very limited, so please bear with me if progress on this front seems to be going slowly.

[2] To provide unique resources to those of you seeking information on Charles Darwin. The illustrated maps of the Beagle Voyage are, so far as I can tell, entirely unique.

[3] To illustrate his amazing life through photography.

[4] Another goal I have is to provide information to those of you who are seeking to do scholarly research on Darwin, but this is still under development.


When was this website started? first went online in the year 2000, on February 12th - The birthday of Charles Darwin!