James Poole was officially Charles Sturt’s second in command on the Central Australian Expedition in 1845.
For several months the expedition was marooned at a waterhole on Preservation Creek, near present day Milparinka.
During the time of the encampment Poole became increasingly ill with scurvy, a disease caused by a deficiency of vitamin C. To gain respite from the heat and to help ease his suffering an underground room was built into the bank of Preservation Creek. Here Poole was able to rest more comfortably.
Plans were made for Poole to be returned to Adelaide when there was a break in the weather. As soon as rain fell a select group started out, carrying Poole on a specially made litter.
Sturt and the remaining expedition members set off toward what would be known as Fort Grey.
Within hours of departure Poole died. One of the accompanying horsemen rode back to find Sturt who returned to the campsite. Poole was buried beneath a beefwood tree. His initials were carved into the bark.
A monument was constructed by the owners of Mount Poole Station some years later.
Marked graves at the site also include a young boy named Carlyon Fuller and his step mother Mary. It is also believed that teamster Henry Brown who died on Mount Poole Station in 1896 is buried in this locality.
Public access to site of the graves is via UR 46 from Hawker Gate Road.