When Australian women were accidentally given the vote. | In Times Gone By…

Australian suffragettes in London in 1911

In the nineteenth century, in the state of Victoria in Australia, the Electoral Act 1863 was passed. According to the act, “all persons” who ow…

Source: When Australian women were accidentally given the vote. | In Times Gone By…

The First Fleet | In Times Gone By…

A 1938 image depicting the First Fleet arriving in Australia on the 26th of January, 1788. This was the beginning of European colonisation of the continent, and the 26th is now called Australia Day.From the collection of the National Library of Australia in Canberra.

Source: The First Fleet | In Times Gone By…

On this day: the disappearance of Harold Holt | In Times Gone By…

On the 17th of December, 1967, Australia’s Prime Minister went swimming in the sea and was never seen again.

Harold Holt, who had been in office for twenty-two months at the time, was a strong swimmer. However, he ignored warnings not to swim in the rough surf and dangerous currents of Cheviot Beach and went out anyway. When he disappeared from view his friends…

Source: On this day: the disappearance of Harold Holt | In Times Gone By…

On this day: the Great Fire of Brisbane

On the 1st of December, 1864, a fire swept through Brisbane, in the Australian colony of Queensland.

Dozens of homes were lost, alongside banks, hotels and small businesses. The damage was made worse because there was…

Source: On this day: the Great Fire of Brisbane

On this day: the Cataraqui sank in 1845

In Times Gone By...

Cataraqui_wreck.The 4th of August, 1845 was the date of the deadliest ship sinking in Australia’s history. The British barque Cataraqui

The Wreck

The 4th of August, 1845 was the date of the deadliest ship sinking in Australia’s history.

The British barque Cataraqui (also known as Cataraque) was cast onto jagged rocks and sank of the south-west coast of Bass Strait.

The ship had departed from Liverpool, England and was heading to Melbourne, Australia with 410 people (369 emigrants and 41 crew) on board. 400 people died in the sinking.

Before the sinking one crew member had already been lost overboard, five babies had been born and six others had died.

After the sinking, eight crew members survived by clinging to wreckage and one passenger, a man named Solomon Brown also survived.

The nine survivors were stranded on King Island for five weeks until being rescued.

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Fine Ships and Gallant Sailors | barbdrummondbooks

Originally posted on barbdrummondbooks.

I grew up in Australia where ANZAC Day is an annual holiday, but I had never heard of this battle. But if it hadn’t happened, the Australians and New Zealanders might not have made it to Gallipoli, and the history of the First World War could have turned out very . book is based on the journal of a friend’s grandfather who signed on to deliver Australia’s first light cruiser, the HMAS Sydney,  in 1913 and ended up in the middle of the first running gun battle of the First World War against the raider/pirate, the German SMS Emden.The Sydney was escorting the first of the ANZAC fleet from Freemantle to Gallipoli, which had been delayed repeatedly due to the risk of attack from the Emden. When the Emden attacked the telegraph station…

via Fine Ships and Gallant Sailors | barbdrummondbooks.

The First Indigenous Author to be in Print

Tribalmystic Stories

For Australia Day features, my son Nathan came up with this brilliant suggestion, and something from Australia’s history. It is a story of a man who became a mediator and later described as a traitor for his relationship with the first settlers. He lived a fascinating life between his own people and the colonials and this life took him on an adventure to England in 1792. Bennelong was said to be the first Indigenous Australian Author to have his words printed. Here are two versions of his story with a song from Bennelong. Long live his spirit!

From ABC Radio, here is a brief story about his trip to England with an audio recording of Bennelong singing.


It has been more than two hundred years since the death of Bennelong – that great Wanggal leader and ambassador to the Sydney colony.

Bennelong has long been cast as a tragic figure, a traitor to…

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On this day: the First Fleet in 1788

In Times Gone By...

View_of_Botany_Bayengraving of the First Fleet in Botany Bay at voyage's end in 1788

On the 20th of January, 1788, the main body of the First Fleet arrived in Botany Bay, modern-day Australia.

The First Fleet, consisting of eleven ships of convicts, marines and seamen, had left England in 1787.

Botany Bay was deemed unsuitable for a colony, with concerns about the lack of fresh water and the swampy land, and the fleet moved further north, to Port Jackson. The fleet’s arrival in the second port is marked by Australia Day on the 26th of January.

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