This is a plan of the ground floor as it existed when the Darwin family moved in on 14 September 1842. It was originally a farm house built around 1650, shown in the blue shaded area. The other section of the house was added around 1778. Charles Darwin had wanted to lease the house for one year to be sure he and Emma liked the place, but the owner, Revd. James Drummond, did not accept the offer. Darwin eventually bought the house outright for £2,200 - a most agreeable sum, considering that the owner was asking for £2,500.
On 24 March 1843 construction was started on a large bay window that extended the drawing room ("I"), and spanned all three floors of the house. This was an alteration Darwin was quite eager to attend to, for it added a bit of class and character to the otherwise dull plan of the house.
A new drawing room was added in 1858, and the main entry was extended. The former drawing room ("I") was converted into the new dining room, and the old dining room ("D") was changed into a billiard room where Charles and his butler, Joseph Parslow, often spent hours at the game.
The Verandah was added to the side of the drawing room ("G") in 1872. It included a typical Victorian patterned tile floor of terra cotta, black, and yellow tiles in geometric shapes, and had two wicker chairs with thick cushions for relaxing outside when the weather was fine.
Darwin's new study was built in 1877, an entry hall and Georgian style porch were also added at this time. The Old Study ("C"), where Darwin wrote "Origin of Species", was converted into a smoking room.

Click here to see a map that describes each of the rooms on the ground floor.