While Charles Darwin wrote his Observations on South America , he often sought the advice and help of other scientists in solving specific problems. Three letters that the Cambridge geologist and mathematician William Hopkins wrote to Darwin exemplify such aid. In these letters Hopkins was able to show Darwin how he could calculate the position of the sedimentary beds on the Chonos Archipelago, which Darwin had visited. In his first letter Hopkins sent a solution, part of which eluded Darwin. Darwin's letters to Hopkins have not yet been found, but two additional letters gave Darwin the solution he was looking for.