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  • Medal in Celebration of the Discovery of the Johnstone River, Queensland in 1873.

    Medal in Celebration of the Discovery of the Johnstone River, Queensland in 1873.

    Produced in 1973 the celebrate the 100 year anniversary of George Elphinstone Dalrymple’s Discovery.

    Cast in coppered bronze by K G Luke. 50 mm in diameter, weighing 48 gm, very good condition.

    Nice design of the North and South Johnson combining and meandering down to the Pacific Ocean through heavily wooded hilly terrain. A very clear horizon, and in the sky above the explorers full name and commemorative dates the full commemorative details in a border around the edge. On the reverse a Floral and scroll design, presumably to take the engraved name of any recipient – here still blank.

    The designer is associated with Sir Kenneth George Lake (1896-1971) who had a very successful business making all things requiring metal design … he was also an important identity in sports administration in Australian particularly the AFL.

    George Elphinstone Dalrymple was a legendary explorer, pioneer and pastoralist in northern Queensland. See Robert Logan Jack’s Northmost Australia for a good account of his efforts. He named the Johnstone River in 1873 in honour of Robert Johnstone of the Native Police who had carried out his handy work in the region. Unusually, the river had already been named by Captain Moresby a year or two earlier … his name the Gladys did not stick, thankfully. The Johnstone is a spectacular part of Australia .. the rivers are subject to exceedingly high rainfall and make for the very best of white water rafting. The confluence of the North and South is about five km west of the town of Innisafail. If you go there … watch out for salty crocodiles.

    Very good uncirculated condition, strong relief.

    Celebrating Northern Queensland Exploration


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  • First Edition – Northmost Australia – Robert Logan Jack – 2 Volumes 1921

    First Edition – Northmost Australia – Robert Logan Jack – 2 Volumes 1921

    … Three Centuries of Exploration, Discovery, and adventure in and around the Cape York Peninsula, Queensland.

    A first edition set published by Simpkins Marshall, London 1921. Two volumes complete with all 17 separate folding maps.

    Robert Logan Jack was the senior Government Geologist for Queensland for 20 years. He replaced Richard Daintree who was the first to hold that position. The best work of its type by far and with a number of unique aspects. Completed in Logan Jack’s final year as he passed away November 1921.

    Both volumes in very good condition. Any foxing internally is relatively limited to the title of one volume and near the ends, despite the spongy, period paper. The loose maps are all there and in very good condition.

    Volume 1 commences with early exploration – Maghelen, Quiros and Torres and the Duyfken at Cape York followed by the Pera and Aernemdealt. Tasman arrives in 1644 and then pre-Cook the voyages of the Buijs and Rijder in 1756 with Van Asschens and Gonzal. And then we have the Endeavour and Cook’s discovery from the South and East and soon after in 1789 Bligh in the Bounty launch. Flinders with the Investigator and the after “Wreck Reef” the Cumberland and captivity. Philip Parker King in the Mermaid fills the gaps in 1819 and then in the Bathurst a year later. The wreck of the Charles Eaton in 1834. Wickham and Stokes in 1839 to the Normanton and Albert Rivers and Burketown. Blackwood and Yule and the “Fly” and their mark on the Straits.

    Then Logan Jack takes us to the interior and much on the great Leichhardt and Kennedy and that other fateful expedition. Back to the coast and Owen Stanley and the Rattlesnake. And then Burke and Wills up the centre and the searching parties … Landsbourough, Walker and McKinley. Closing with good content on the Jardine Brothers up the Cape, the special efforts of first geologist Daintree and then Captain John Moresby (junior) into the Torres Straits.

    Whilst volume I contains some hard to find narrative such as the Jardines and Daintree Volume II is a masterclass. After opening comments on Aboriginal and Polynesian labour we commence our explorations with the elusive William Hann and the Palmer River followed by Mulligan and 150 pages of Logan Jack’s own extensive explorations. Ending with some explorations gems with Donald Laing, Embley, William Baird, John Dickie, William Lakeland and William Bowden.

    We have gone on a bit but fell justified in attempting to describe the effort put into this book and the scarcity of the accounts. The whole wonderfully illustrated by images of the explorers often from family sources and at the rear separate indexes by persons, localities and subjects.

    The Further North you go the better it gets in these Volumes – First Edition – Nice Set


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  • Supreme Court of Queensland 1859-1960: History, Jurisdiction, Procedure. –  Justice Bruce H.M. McPherson

    Supreme Court of Queensland 1859-1960: History, Jurisdiction, Procedure. – Justice Bruce H.M. McPherson

    A first edition of the book on the Queensland Supreme Court up to 1960. Published by Butterworths, Sydney in 1989.

    Royal octavo, 440 pages after a lengthy forward by the Rt Hon Sir Harry Gibbs, former Chief Justice of Australia.

    With colour portraits and black and white text illustrations. A very good copy.

    The author, Bruce Harvey McPherson (1936-2013) was South African born who graduated from Trinity Hall Cambridge in 1959. Shortly after he moved to Brisbane. He was admitted to the Queensland Bar on 1965 and made QC in 1975. He was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1982 and then the Court of Appeal in 1991 continuing in that role until his retirement in 2006.

    Queensland Supreme Court by McPherson.


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  • More About Cairns : Echoes of the Past – J.W. Collinson – First Limited Numbered Signed Edition

    More About Cairns : Echoes of the Past – J.W. Collinson – First Limited Numbered Signed Edition

    The second of Collinson’s books about Cairns and the Far North .. an a little bit of New Guinea.

    Signed limited edition number 337 0f 500. Printed in Brisbane by Smith and Paterson, 1943.

    Small octavo, 134 pages with six illustrations. Original brown cloth covered boards with gilt lettering to, rubbed somewhat. Internally very clean and tight a pretty good copy.

    Charming first person narrative of goings on in early Cairns from the Jungle to the Business Centre. Kuranda and the Falls; early Pioneers; the Wreck of the Ranelaigh etc. Interesting section of gold in New Guinea … quite a few ounces taken in some unusual locations.

    Collinson, regarded as a classic of the Far North ….


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  • The Border and Beyond – Camooweal 1884 – Queensland History – Lillian Miller.

    The Border and Beyond – Camooweal 1884 – Queensland History – Lillian Miller.

    Much more than a local history or if it is the best we have seen and read.

    Lillian Miller was the wife of Rocklands Station Manger Robey Miller. The forward is by the great Sir James Balderstone, Chairman of Stanbroke Pastoral and BHP .. he knew them well.

    Self published 1984. Folio, softcover 161 pages illustrated throughout many from period photographs. Very clean inside, a very good copy signed by the author.

    Camooweal is situated in north west Queensland, 105 kms from Mount Isa and close to the Northern Territory border. The local area covered by this work is known as the Barkly Tablelands and, was named by William Landsbourough on his great inland explorations aligned to finding Burke and Wills. A tree on the Rocklands Station was cut and marked by Landsborough. William Hodgkinson also explored the area.

    Great work on many topics including the massive local cave networks.

    Detailed history about a remote part of Australia.


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  • Brisbane Centenary Medal – Discovery by John Oxley  1823 -1923

    Brisbane Centenary Medal – Discovery by John Oxley 1823 -1923

    John Oxley (1784-1828)officially discovered the Brisbane River naming it after the then Governor of New South Wales in 1823. He had some assistance from three shipwrecked sailors, Parson, Finnegan and Pamphlett who had been taken in by a local aboriginal group. Oxley was looking for new locations for convict sites and recommended Moreton Bay on his return. In 1824 he returned and discovered the Bremer River a major tributary.

    The medal 3cm in diameter of light white metal shows the Brisbane Shield with its connection to the land and sea … Brisbane Centenary 1823 and 1923. On the obverse boldly “To Commemorate the Discovery of the Brisbane River by Lieut Oxley in 1823”.

    Accompanied by a card tag with a typical profile image of Oxley related to celebrations carried out the following year. Amazing that this has survived.

    The Discovery of Brisbane Celebrated nearly another hundred up!


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