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  • The Wild White Man of Badu – Ion Idriess – First Edition – Signed

    The Wild White Man of Badu – Ion Idriess – First Edition – Signed

    A scarce first edition published by Angus and Robertson, Sydney in 1950. Signed and inscribed boldly by Idriess on the title to his dear friend Frances Van Cleef, wife of a wealth Chicago industrialist.

    Octavo, 232 pages, well illustrated with images from photographs, maps of the islands, end paper maps etc. Small chips and closed tear to otherwise very good dust jacket, clean inside a super copy.

    The incredible true story of a convict escaping from Norfolk Island and becoming the Chief of Badu, in the Torres Strait. See image of map on rear end papers for some clues.

    Strange and exciting Farthest North – Signed Idriess First Edition


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  • Disturbing Element [An Autobiography] – Xavier Herbert – First Edition 1963

    Disturbing Element [An Autobiography] – Xavier Herbert – First Edition 1963

    A very nice first edition copy of Australian writer Xavier Herbert’s autobiography.

    Born in 1901 Xavier Herbert had a rather strange upbringing. He trained as a Pharmacist having worked in a chemist’s shop at the age of 14. He went to Melbourne to study medicine. Writing was a passion but he was in his thirties before his great work “Capricornia” was published to great acclaim. He was much admired by HG Wells.

    Xavier Herbert was the “Disturbing Element’. Published by F.W. Cheshire, Melbourne etc in 1963. Octavo, 271 pages, a very good if not better copy.

    Xavier Herbert published few works and his final novel “Poor Fellow My Country” was published in 1975 and won him the Miles Franklin award. It is also the longest novel ever published by an Australian writer at 1,466 pages and an estimated 852 thousand words

    Interesting autobiography of the elusive talented Xavier Herbert.


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  • Medicine Man – F.B. McCann

    Medicine Man – F.B. McCann

    A very nice copy of Frank McCann’s book … essentially an autobiography of his experiences as a bush Doctor in the outback Northern Australia, predominantly among indigenous people and, likely the world’s largest geographical practice.

    Published by Angus and Robertson, Sydney in 1959. Octavo, 208 pages, the odd illustrative sketch. Nice dust jacket. A very good copy.

    An interesting book of a near unique nature. Written in a humorous style but not without rewarding content.

    Anecdotes of distinguished Medical Man in the outback


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  • Packhorse and Waterhole [The Story of Pioneer Nat

    Packhorse and Waterhole [The Story of Pioneer Nat "Bluey" Buchanan] – Gordan Buchanan – First Edition 1933

    A rare first edition of this genuine account of the pioneer Nat “Bluey” Buchanan told by his son.

    Published in 1933 by Angus and Robertson. No jacket boards showing some age as usual. 215 pages plus publishers catalogue. Illustrated throughout from photographs. Frontispiece portrait of Nat and his wife Katherine Buchanan. Some age internally still a good serviceable copy.

    What an adventure Nat Buchanan had ridden with William Landsborough [Burke and Wills] in his explorations of Northern Queensland and been a partner along with Landsborough in a pioneering station in the tablelands south of the Gulf. This was sold for good money and Nat and his family, including the writer, set-off across the Northern Territory all the way.

    Fair dinkum bush classic – Nat Buchanan up North out Bush



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  • Eight Bells – A Tale of the Sea and the Cannibals of New Guinea – Hume Nisbet – 1889

    Eight Bells – A Tale of the Sea and the Cannibals of New Guinea – Hume Nisbet – 1889

    A tale that includes much Australian content, in particular, Moreton Bay … Brisbane .. Ipswich and the Reef.

    Scarce first edition, octavo 334 pages, published by Ward and Downey, London. Original thick pictorial boards, re-cased with new endpapers, quite clean inside. Some age marks to the front board, otherwise a good tight copy.

    James Hume Nisbet (1849-1923) was a Scottish born author and artist. He first went to Melbourne at 16 and worked in the theatre before traveling the East Coast, New Zealand and the Pacific. He returned to Scotland in 1873. In 1886 he was commissioned by Cassell’s to visit Australia and New Guinea and contributed to their “Picturesque Australasia” and wrote this book based on his experiences.

    After various introduction the story gets going on the vessel “Flying Fox” with a mutiny … and arrival at Moreton Bay … interesting references to a lady who appears to plot the death of her husband after taking a lover (perhaps a true story) … various references to the gold fields and the consequences of bad luck. Off up to New Guinea taking in the Barrier Reef. More mutinous difficulties approaching New Guinea … a drift into a very nice early history of the European encounters with Papua.

    Super scarce 19th Century adventure in Australia and New Guinea.


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  • Queensland Geographical Journal – Diamond Jubilee Issue 1885-1945. Also has important Papua New Guinea content.

    The journal as published by the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia (Queensland). Octavo, soft wrappers, 113 pages after preliminaries. A very good copy bar the obvious marks to the covers … pretty clean and bright inside.

    After various historic introductions articles re “Queensland Pastures – Their Development and Improvement; Across Papua’s Mighty Delta by A.L. Ethell; Irrigation (Queensland); The Interior of Eastern Papua by Captain Vernon.

    Nicely illustrated and with a fold out sketch map from Bootless Bay (near Port Moresby) to Buna showing a vertical cross section of the Kokoda track … the article stimulated by the incredible conflict that had just come to an end in the region.

    A special issue of the RGSA (Qld) Journal with particular interest to New Guinea collectors and readers.


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