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The Surveyors by Margaret Goyder Kerr

The Surveyors by Margaret Goyder Kerr

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The Surveyors

The story of the founding of Darwin

by Margaret Goyder Kerr

Rigby, 1971, [First Edition], ISBN 0851792871, black and white photographic plates, illustrated end papers (maps), hardcover, dustjacket

Very Good Condition, minor edge and shelf wear, no inscriptions, dustjacket shows minor edge and shelf wear with minor rubbing and bumping to edges and corners (see photographs)

“The Northern Territory of South Australia had broken many hearts by the missile of last century.  Every attempt to found a permanent settlement had failed.  Colonel Boyle travers Finniss, the first Premier of South Australia, had led an expedition which had high hopes of solving the problem, but had returned defeated by the fearful conditions of the untamed tropical north.  Wildly optimistic plans alternated with gloomy scandal, until George Woodroffe Goyder was given the seemingly impossible task.
Goyder was a complex and controversial figure.  As Surveyor-General of South Australia, remembered best for his “Goyder’s Line” of rainfall, he had gained the reputation of “knowing every inch” of the young colony.  His competence and dedication had won him the respect of the government, yet to many people he was the object of dislike and even scorn.  He was a strange mixture of man of action and stern authoritarian, and did not suffer fools gladly.
this book by his granddaughter, Margaret Goyder Kerr, is a sensitive portrait of the man and his methods – and of the immense task which he undertook in planning the town of Darwin and surveying 600,000 acres of wilderness in the township area.  He and his men battled against almost impossible odds, including hostile natives, scurvy and other sickness, and sheer isolation.  How Goyder and his expedition succeeded in their work, and blazed the trail for the settlement of Darwin, is an epic of Australian exploration and an inspiring example of human courage.”


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