A revision of Norma King’s popular Colourful Tales of the Western Australian Goldfields (1980) by Lorraine Kelly.
The stories in this book relate to Western Australia’s most fascinating chapter of history – that of the frenzied excitement of the early gold-rush days. The pursuit of gold with its promise of untold wealth yoked the most unlikely characters together, from the desperate unemployed loner to the titled English speculator.
It was a precarious existence and home was a transitory affair for most families, moving from one town to another as the gold was worked out or as rumour directed. The incredible feats of the goldfields cyclists, carrying news to the remotest of areas, the part played by camels in opening up the outback, the unique Loopline railway, dangerous gold-rushes, the law of the digger in ‘roll-ups’ and the threat of death from the harsh environment are told to form a complete and intriguing portrait of life on the goldfields.
The fortunes of towns, mines and individuals from boom time to depression are traced with telling accuracy and detail by writers whose life and background are interwoven with the story of Western Australia’s goldfields.