The Difficulties of My Position
The Diaries of Prison Governor John Buckley Castieau 1855-1884
by Mark Finnane
National Library of Australia, 2004, [First Edition], b/w photographs, paperback, ISBN 0642107939
Near Fine Condition, minor edge and shelf wear, minor rubbing to corners
'A career in the Victorian penal system might not seem to be a source of excitement or even great interest, but for John Buckley Castieau it was the trigger for nearly three decades of diaries that reveal not only what went on behind prison walls but also much about the colony's early social history. J.B. Castieau was the governor of both Beechworth and Melbourne gaols as well as, somewhat disastrously, the Inspector-General of Penal Establishments. Well-educated, fond of the theatre, frequently in debt, impulsively generous, self-doubting and 'of unsteady habits' in his cups, he knew many of the prominent characters of 'Marvellous Melbourne' - the journalist Marcus Clarke, the famous and fiery legal figure, Sir Redmond Barry, founder and first chancellor of the University of Melbourne, and Sir George Kerferd, Premier of the state.'