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River of Gold

This passage was taken from ‘River of Gold – the wild days of the Palmer River Gold Rush’ by Hector Holthouse.

…After finding a track over the coastal range, the party at last came down into the valley of the Normanby River on Monday, 3rd November. “Some blacks were shot here,” wrote Webb. “I don’t know why, as they had not interfered with us”. But another digger, J. J. Canley, writing later to the Queenslander, gave a different account of it. “When the horses were turned out, the blacks put in an appearance and attempted to drive them away.” He wrote. “This led to the blacks being dispersed and the horses secured.”

Primary resources, such as direct quotations from journals written by participants in an historical event, provide the reader with important information. Suggested activities to test student comprehension could include researching the impact of the meeting of cultures in your local community. Students might explore the reasons why language and traditional communication skills were often ineffective as the cultures tried to occupy the same area.



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