Archive for January, 2016

SMALLPOX SYDNEY 1789 – A VERY CONVENIENT THEORY – IT WAS THE MACASSANS STUPID

Monday, January 25th, 2016

‘These people last summer would neither eat shark or stingray, but the scarcity of fish in the winter, I believe obliges them to eat anything that affords the smallest nourishment.

They [Aborigines] are not pleased with our remaining amongst them, as they see we deprive them of fish, which is almost their only support;’. Governor Phillip dispatch to Lord Sydney, 28 September 1788  

England -1787 May 13: Commanded by Captain Arthur Phillip RN the ‘First Fleet’ – a large armed squadron of  eleven (11) British ships with a complement of 1500 souls – charged with the invasion and conquest of New Holland, now Australia – sailed from Portsmouth ‘bound for Botany Bay’.

Up to 1,500 Macassans a year would reach [northern] Australia and they did influence the Aborigines by trading iron axes, tobacco, cloth, knives and glass. They taught the Aboriginal of those parts how to make dug-out canoes, more substantial than the simple [Sydney] water-craft of stringy-bark’. Stewart Harris, Treaty, It’s Coming Yet, 1979  

Botany Bay – 1788 January:  The First Fleet’s 1500 English men, women and children arrived at Botany Bay within thirty-six (36) hours between the 18th and -20th of  January 1788.

Port Jackson – January 26:  Governor Arthur Phillip RN established a permanent English settlement nine (9) miles north of Botany Bay at Sydney Cove deep within Port Jackson.

Sydney Cove – February 7:  Proclamation Day; Governor Phillip, without consent or treaty, proclaimed British Sovereignty over New Holland from ‘Cape York in the northern most extremity…to South Cape’. See: Australia – Britain By A Short Half-Head Captain Arthur Phillip & Comte Jean-Francois La Perouse

The invaders did not find the local Eora Peoples familiar with iron axes, knives, tobacco, cloth or glass.  However when introduced the locals valued them highly – especially the hatchet.

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TASMANIA – A WAR GRAVE – THE BACK STORY

Monday, January 11th, 2016

‘The first European settlements, from Port Jackson in 1788 [Tasmania 1803], Moreton Bay, Swan River and Adelaide during the next fifty years were intensive…This meant a complete undermining of the Aborigines’ way of life’. Professor A.P. Elkin, the Australian Aborigines, Epilogue, 5th edition, 1973

1792 – December: Governor Arthur Phillip RN returned to England after a five (5) year tenure as Britain’s first commissioned governor of New South Wales.

Whitehall failed to appoint a successor. As a result, by default, the immense power invested in Arthur Phillip, said to be unique in Britain’s long history of colonisation, fell to the military.

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BRITAIN BY A NOSE

Saturday, January 2nd, 2016

1785 – August, Brest: ‘In 1785 Louis XVI quietly sent the Comte de la Perouse with two ships La Boussole & L’Astrolabe to survey likely spots for French settlements. Aboard were copper plates engraved with the royal arms to be used as permanent notification of French ownership’. Australian Discovery and Exploration, Michael Cannon, 1987  

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