Chapter 10: Bendigo’s Gold
Bendigo’s Gold is the story of the families now being followed in The Tin Ticket as they move toward the gold rush in the gold fields of Victoria. It provides a short, almost rushed account, of life for those heading off to make their fortune in the gold fields. As always, an insight into this period is provided, right down to various incidentals of what life was like for these prospectors. There was the very real prospect of being robbed, both by bushrangers on the roads leading to the gold fields and the inspectors on the gold fields. Life was a difficult prospect for most during the gold rushes and especially so for those with young families.
Included in this chapter is an account of events leading up to the rebellion that has come down to us in history as the Eureka Stockade, which began as the fight for miners rights and finished with that bloody battle and the crushing of the miners rebellion.
There are further brief descriptions of what the lives of each of the three women and their descendants brought for them. The narrative though is quickly brought to a conclusion toward the end of chapter 10 and there is a sense that more could have been told regarding the stories of these remarkable women and their thirst for freedom in the Australian bush.
Chapter 10 is essentially the end of the book proper, though there are a number of appendixes following the end of this chapter. Overall, I think the book tends to be a bit rushed in sections, though well written. I have a bit of a thing for detail and appreciate more thorough investigations within nonfiction works, yet still found this book to be a very valuable contribution to the written history of early colonial Australia. I would highly recommend The Tin Ticket to anyone with an interest in Australian history and our convict past.
I think I would give it somewhere between a 3.5 and 4 out of 5 as a rating.
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