Friday, November 20, 2009
Matthew Brady - Tasmanian bushranger
Now 75% through my research in the life of Bushranger, Matthew Brady, I am finding the study intriguing. I am also discovering that there is far more to the early days of Tasmania than just convicts and settlers, and that the legacy of the events which took place in the early 1800s are still with us today.
If you are interested in the life and times of the 'gentleman' bushranger, the members of Brady's gang, the penal settlements and more you can find it at my Matthew Brady Squidoo site.
Having obtained permission to reproduce images of Brady and his gang-members from the artwok of convict artist, Thomas Bock from Dixson Library, NSW, it's possible to see how very young and fresh-faced some of these 'notorious' convicts were. The crimes many had committed were equivalent to the 'receiving a stolen chocolate Freddo Frog incident' which was reported last week on the news in Australia.
The penalties these young convicts received - transportation to the colonies for seven years - and the treatment they received were incomprehensible.
Last week also, I watched the APOLOGY from the Prime Minister to the FORGOTTON CHILDREN - the infants taken from England or from their parents and placed in 'homes' in Australia where many were subjected to brutal treatment and abuse.
Perhaps we should apologise to the young juvenile deliquents of the early 1800s who, as a consequence of the inhuman treatment they received at the hand of the authroities, escaped to the bush to fend for themselves. As bushrangers they robbed to feed and cloth themselves and many of them, like Brady and his gang, ended up on the gallows.
Pic: Matthew Brady from 'James McCabe, Matthew Brady, Patrick Bryant', ca. 1823 - 1843. by Thomas Bock in his 'Sketches of Tasmanian Bushrangers'. (Ref: DL PX 5/ f.8 ) Pic: Gregory, Brown and MacKenny - ca. 1823 - 1843. by Thomas Bock in his 'Sketches of Tasmanian Bushrangers'. Courtesy of Dixson Library, State Library of NSW.