Epic achievements of the pioneering days
The epic achievements of those who fought through ti-tree scrub, swamp and forest to open up a land which they could call their own are affectionately recorded here in this collection of stories about the pioneering days in Gippsland, Victoria.
John Wells, himself a Gippslander, has discovered through his own meticulous research and by talking with those who remember both the hard times and the 'good old days', a wealth of fascinating information about the area's history and its people.
We are shown the early prospectors who left their mark in 'Mt Misery'; the hardy farmers like Angus McMillan, who established a cattle trade through Port Albert; those who explored unknown country; those who chased dreams of gold, and those who made fortunes from the discovery of coal.
Many of the early settlers who made Gippsland what it is today might even be regarded as a little eccentric.
There is, for example, Solomon Kinsey, who lived in a log. There is the prospector who, when his clothes wore out, made himself a suit of tin. And there is Mrs Harris, who struggled to transport a grand piano across rough country by bullock dray so that her daughters might have the chance to grow up as 'ladies'.
Some are remembered for their bravery and initiativelike Joseph Gellibrand, who pushed through unexplored dry bush in the middle of an 1830s heat wave.
But equally deserving of remembrance are the unsung heroes and heroines: those who built schools, who fought fires, who built railways, or who sold milk and cream; those who were blushing debutantes and sturdy wives.
From such individual histories John Wells has created a colourful tapestry of human endeavour and achievement which is not only an absorbing historical study but an enduring tribute to our pioneers. (Rear cover text).