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Northern Territory

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  • Robert O’Hara Burke and the Australian Exploring Expedition – Andrew Jackson 1860

    Robert O’Hara Burke and the Australian Exploring Expedition – Andrew Jackson 1860

    Scarce first edition of this essential Burke and Wills book published by Smith and Elder in 1862.

    Octavo, xxi, 229 pages with woodcut portrait of Burke and folding map, extensive Publishers Catalogue at the rear. Original green cloth covered binding, some internal foxing particularly the map and adjacent pages as usual. Very good original embossed green cloth covered binding, gilt title to spine bright and fresh. Unusual for a usually distressed book.

    Andrew Jackson may have known Burke personally, he was certainly an acquaintance of Burke’s father, they were officers in the same Regiment. The first chapter give an interesting account of the family military history and background on Robert O’Hara Burke.

    Written from papers, journals, letters, reports, interviews etc associated with the expedition. Nicely written carefully compiled.

    An important “companion work” to the Bentley published book based on Wills’s journal and letters.

    Scarce Burke and Wills contemporary reference


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  • Geology in Australia [Good Tasmanian Content] – Stillwell Anniversary Volume – The Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy – 1958.

    This special volume was dedicated to one of Australia’s greatest geologists Frank Leslie Stillwell on his 70th birthday.

    Hardbound octavo, 302 pages. After a brief biography of Stillwell … 16 discrete geological reports of substance most illustrated with fold out charts and diagrams. Rubbed and worn on spine edges, very clean inside and firmly bound, a pretty good copy

    Includes the mineralisation of the Gondwana Shield. Tellurides and Selenides at the Great Boulder Mine Kalgoorlie.

    Various Tasmanian reports .. The Mineralised Rift Valleys of Tasmania; Diamond drill deflection at Rosebery; Nickel Mineralisation in Western Tasmania and A History of Geological Thought at Mount Lyell.

    Elsewhere includes Uranium in the Northern Territory; Galena in Western Australia and a super report on the geology of Cockatoo Island at Yampi Sound WA.

    Special Geological Edition – Wide ranging content with good contribution re Tasmania.


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  • The Dawn of Time – Australian Aboriginal Myths in Paintings – Roberts and Mountford.

    The Dawn of Time – Australian Aboriginal Myths in Paintings – Roberts and Mountford.

    A first edition of this “sequel” to Dreamtime. Another wonderful book by ethnologist Charles Mountford and artist Ainslie Roberts.

    Published in 1969 again by Rugby, Adelaide. Same small quarto format 79 pages with a beautiful image for each of the myths recounted by Mountford received from Elders and Storytellers.

    Includes some from the coast such as Kondole the Whale; Pipinyawari the Queen Fish … the Fighting Cloud Women; the Black Kangaroo; and our favourite Brolga the Dancing Girl .. albeit a little sad.

    Remember this story when you see a Brolga.


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  • Burrunguy – Nourlangie Rock [Kakadu] – George Chaloupka

    Burrunguy – Nourlangie Rock [Kakadu] – George Chaloupka

    The striking natural features of the Burrunguy, also known as Norlangie, in the Northern Territory Kakadu National Park are World Heritage listed. The ancient rock forms are surrounded by a massive network of crevices and gorges containing a wide range of geology, flora and fauna.

    Also at Burrunguy are many quite curious and relatively recent (20th century) aboriginal rock painting depicting stories of the people and their history.

    Published by North Art in 1984. Small quarto, 40 pages intensely illustrated with images from colour photographs many of the unusual rock painting. End paper maps.

    Hidden Kakadu treasures.


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  • One Ceremony One Song. An Economy of Religious Knowledge Among Yolnu of North-East Arnhem Land. A PhD Thesis – Australia National University – 1978 – Ian Keen

    One Ceremony One Song. An Economy of Religious Knowledge Among Yolnu of North-East Arnhem Land. A PhD Thesis – Australia National University – 1978 – Ian Keen

    An original copy of the monumental Thesis written by Ian Keen to obtain his PhD from ANU in 1978. Keen to go on to be a respected anthropologist holding positions at Queensland University and ANU and spending time at Oxford, visiting Professor at Osaka etc.

    Perfect bound in blue cloth covered boards, gilt titles to front and spine. Typed on one side 412 pages with 19 pages of plates from the authors photographs; 72 Figures in text; 45 tables of information and 4 maps. This copy gifted to “Jimmy” clearly an associated academic with a few marginal notes etc. Over 3 kgs in weight so if Overseas a postage supplement will be necessary.

    The English born author was late to the academic world having first worked as an art restorer before doing an undergraduate degree at the University of London under Mary Douglas in his mid thirties. He did well and soon won a scholarship to work on Aboriginal religion through song symbolism in Arnhem Land, Northern Australia. This thesis demonstrates the depth of his research and provides a meticulous record of his findings.

    He commenced his work on the island of Milingimbi in 1974 and worked there for fourteen months before completing a further 10 months on the mainland at Nanggalala. Its is not surprising that “’writing up” took him some time.

    His “Abstract” explains his examination of the relationship between the organisation, ownership and content of religious practice and knowledge, marriage and power relations in Yolnu society. He argues that older men require the authority gained through their control of secret ceremonies and religious knowledge, in order to sustain a polygamous regime. Making possible a system of marriage through which some men gain many wives. Keen’s description of the various ceremonies is highly detailed … we doubt if any broadly published material covers such content with similar vigour.

    A special reference relating to the Yolnu of Northern Australia.


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  • Discovery – Stories of Modern Mineral Exploration – Alan Trengove

    Discovery – Stories of Modern Mineral Exploration – Alan Trengove

    A fine copy of the first edition published by Stockwell Press in 1979.

    Octavo, 278 pages, illustrated from photographs and numerous maps of mineral areas.

    Starts with the “Forgotten Frontier” … Cape York and the Weipa area. Then the Bowen expanses, Pilbara before the arrival of the super mines, Gold and the advent of the offshore drilling ships. Closes with an appendix “A History of Resources of Metallic Ores” by King. Well its all a history really.

    What is now a super background to the history of mineral exploration in Australia.


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