Lake Wallace and the power station are now the most conspicuous features in the Wallerawang landscape. This view overlooks the spot where Barton Park stood. Barton Park was built by the Walker Bartons on the site of the earlier Wallerawong Station where Charles Darwin had stayed . There is a peculiar but meaningless irony in the place where Darwin first conceived the theory of evolution being below a lake in the name of his nemesis Wallace.
The extraordinary Alfred Russel Wallace, socialist, naturalist, adventurer and even early environmentalist, came up with the theory of evolution independently of Darwin, forcing Darwin to finally go public with his research. Although a lesser scientist than Darwin, as he always acknowledged, he was in many ways a greater genius and human being.
But the Lake isn’t named after him, it’s prosaically named after an engineer involved in its construction.