The Least of Many EvilseBook - 2014
With the combined skills of a bilingual historian and story teller the author has pieced together a collection of true but little known real adventures during the tragic events in Ireland and the turbulent colonial years of Australia and New Zealand in the mid 19th century. The story Maurice O'Brien is an amalgam of actual events in the lives of several real people who were sent as convicts to New South Wales. About 164,000 people, men, women and children, from the British Isles were given life sentences of transportation to the penal colonies. Most had been convicted of petty crimes or political rebellion but some were genuinely dangerous criminals and murderers who, for one reason or another, had escaped the gallows. Staying alive and surviving their harsh treatment was as much a matter of luck as it was courage and adventurous spirit and many died A few rose to political prominence but many simply disappeared into the anonymous vastness of Australia, never to be heard of again. Their names and graves have long been forgotten and their tragic stories have never been told. Others and their children escaped to New Zealand, with whalers and on other ships. Some were killed by Maori on arrival and others joined Maori society. Among them were a few who rose to prominence in tribal life, took part in tribal wars and customs including cannibalism. Accounts of intertribal fighting, and the names of those involved, have come from eye witness accounts published in New Zealand newspapers in the 1880s. Details of harpooning whales from open boats, encounters with the infamous Te Rauparaha and Te Rangihaeata on Kapiti Island and the ill-fated Wakefield family are also historically accurate. The story of the first armed conflict over land in New Zealand between Maori and Europeans, in Marlborough in 1843, comes from official journals and documents which recorded the interviews and the evidence of Te Rauparaha and the European survivors. The relatively unknown motives of both sides to the conflict have come from tribal histories and newspaper reports of the time. This is our real history told in novel form for a general readership.
Publisher: Christchurch :, John Douglas Publishing,, 2014.
Characteristics: 1 online resource (768 pages) PDF