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4-317 (Original)

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addressee author,male,Balzano, James,36
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Private Written
Compton, 1993
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Sunday August 4, 1895 Passed a cold night. Got up at 7.00 am. Cold morning and fairly warm day. Breakfast at 8.00 am:- porridge, damper, jam and a mug of cocoa. After breakfast I piled up my outfit on the wheelbarrow which consisted of the following things:- the tent, blankets, provisions, pick and shovel, sieve, two prospecting dishes, two waterbags, and the shaker. Amongst the many sundries are four books, namely:- Shakespeare's plays and sonnets, Lord Byron, and Sir Walter Scott's poetical works, and Thomas Paine's theological works. This done I then went to say goodbye to George Reilly of Bendigo. Paid the shilling which I owed him then presented him with a tin opener.
At 10.05 am I started for Pendennie which is 170 miles from Lake Darlot. I found the load intolerably heavy, so after travelling about three miles I plunged the shaker in the bush, even then the load was still heavy. A little further on I noticed that I was walking on a trail of sugar. It was rather too late when I discovered that the wheel had torn a hole in the tucker bag and I had lost most of the scanty quantity I possessed.
I must strive to reach the soak before nightfall and camp with the party of men, with two horses and a cart going to the Pendennie Rush namely:- Jack McTamaray, Samuel Keenan, James Bell, Thomas Malcolm Carmichael and Rowland Anderson. [25]
Arrived at the soak at 7.05 pm which is 16 miles from Lake Darlot. At 7.35 pm I ate some damper, a bit tin mutton, a bit onion and cocoa. I chatted with the men by the fire till 9.00 pm, then I laid to sleep at 9.05 pm. It is glorious moonlight and calm. Felt very tired.
P.S. The country I passed through today is flat with poor soil and dwarf Mulga. The 16 Mile Soak is situated in a sandy watercourse about five chains wide. It has nearly a dozen holes, each with a few inches of water. There are a lot of Cork trees growing here. Some of them are about 20 feet high. Grevillea is the botanical name. [...]
August 5, 1985 I passed a good warm might on the Cork tree leaves bed, although it froze a little, I felt not cold. I got up at 6.35 am. Chilly morning and pretty warm day. Breakfast at 7.15 am; porridge, damper, jam and cocoa. [...]
August 6, 1895 Passed a sleepless night. Yesterday morning while mending the wheelbarrow I struck a blow on the thumb nail of my left hand. It festered and caused a terrible pain. At 3 o'clock this morning I lit the candle and scraped the nail with the knife. [26] It burst out, a good deal of matter flowed out and I had little sleep afterwards. I arose at 6.35 am. Chilly morning and warm day, cold last night.
Started at 8.40 am and camped at 5.50 pm on the Wilson Creek about 300 yards from Robert Craig's grave and about 20 yards from the track. We are now 40 miles from Lake Darlot. I passed about two miles of sand and Spinifex and found it a bit hard pushing the wheelbarrow. Passed some quaint basins (with Gum trees) about 15ft to 20ft deep from level to level and eastward I saw a table mountain. Made my bed of Mulga leaves. Done a little writing by firelight and retired at 8. 15 pm. Breakfast 7. 15 am; porridge, damper, syrup and cocoa. Dinner 1.00 pm; damper, boiled mutton and cocoa. Supper 7.00 pm; rice, damper, bit beef sausages and cocoa. I finished my water at dinnertime. Carmichael gave me some. [...]
August 7, 1895 I passed a warm night, chilly morning and warm day. After breakfast Samuel Keenan, Carmichael's mate went out to look for water as we intended to steer eastward for Pendennie. He returned at 9.30 am. He said, "no water". We resolved to go by Doyle's Well.
We started at 9.40 am. We had not a drop of water left. We had had a little this morning. We travelled over 12 miles before we came to a soak in Wilson's Creek. We reached it at 2.35 pm. Pushing the wheelbarrow I got very thirsty and I drank like a horse. I had dinner at 3.00 pm and I drank a billy full of cocoa viz, two quart. While we were having dinner, three men arrived with a handcart. Just then three stray horses came to the soak to have a drink. They caught one and attached it to the handcart and off they went. They were going to Coolgardie. Two of the men were named Jack and Archie.
We started again at 4.40 pm. We travelled four miles or thereabouts. Camped at 6.10 pm, about seven miles from Doyle's Well. We travelled about 16 miles today. We are 56 miles from Lake Darlot. We made a big fire. I baked a damper from 8. 10 pm to 9.00 pm, used about 4£bs flour. Retired at 9. 15 pm. Beautiful moonlight night. Did a little writing by moonlight. At 7.20 am; porridge, damper, syrup and cocoa. At 3.00 pm; damper, beef sausages and cocoa. At 7. 10 pm; rice, damper, cheese and cocoa. [27] [...]
August 8, 1895 I passed a pretty warm night. I got up at 7.00 am. Slightly chilly morning and pretty warm day. Breakfast 7.30 am; porridge, damper, syrup and cocoa.
We started travelling at 8.20 am. We arrived at Doyle's Well 11.55 am. It is also known as Cutmore's Well. It is situated in an open pleasant grassy plain, about two miles from the Bawden Range. Roughly about 64 miles from Lake Darlot and 236 miles from Coolgardie.
The well is 70 feet deep and has three feet of water, good sweet water. The scale of charge is as follows; camel 1 / 6 per drink, horse and bullock 9d per drink, horse 5 / per week, sheep 2 / 6 per score, carting 5 / per 100 gallons, travellers 1d per gallon. There is a woman here, a Mrs Howie. She lives in a tent about a chain from the Well. She has two little children. I could not discern at a distance whether they are boys or girls. I bought two gallons water, paid 2d. We had dinner here 12.45 pm. I ate porridge, damper, syrup and cocoa. After dinner we travelled about two miles and camped at 3. 15 pm, about four miles (or so) from Bawden Range and two miles from Doyle's Well. Supper 5.30 pm; porridge, damper, bit cheese and cocoa.
P.S. A mile or so after leaving Doyle's Well we passed a kind of hill extending north and south. Formed of iron blow and slate, and a lot of little green trees and plenty flowers. It made a beautiful scene. The country about here is flat with Mulga and Sandalwood. [...]
August 9, 1895 I passed a fairly warm night. I got up at 7.05 am. Slightly
chilly morning and warm day. 36 years ago today, I first breathed this mundane air. For my birthday gift I got a good gruelling. The barrow wobbled most viciously today. The axle dropped off the wheel at 2.00 pm. Took me 35 minutes to put it on. [28]
I started at 9.20 am and the track on both sides of the Bawden Range for nearly nine miles is the worst I've ever encountered so far and the sudden jerks caused pains in the joints of my elbows. The track is very strong indeed.
At 3.45 pm I started to cross the Bawden Ranges. Got over at 5.00 pm.
There are two men named Robin and Stanton. I presume the lease they are working is called the Diorite King. The man at the windlass said that the shaft is 99 feet deep and the gold is looking well. He picked up two pieces of rock mixed with quartz and diorite and showed me the gold. This he said came out of the reef at 90 feet deep.
After this the track has been a little better. I walked at a smart pace. At 6.05 pm when the shades of night were falling fast around me I came to two dray tracks, one leading south, the other east. I was puzzled which was the right one. I followed the latter. At 6.35 pm I reached the party's camp. None of them said a word. At last Jack McTamaray said "you had a rough road today". I said "yes". I boiled a little rice. After supper I made my bed of Mulga leaves. Did a little writing by firelight and retired at 8.05 pm. I travelled over 15 miles today. I am now two miles or so from the Diorite King and 83 miles from Lake Darlot. I like the country I passed through today. If I had provisions I would do a lot prospecting. I am eating now very sparingly. My provision is getting to the end of its tether. I have only 5 / 8d left and that will not buy much provision. Somewhat through a sudden jerk one of my waterbags burst today and I lost much water. It annoyed me very much. [...]
August 10, 1895 I passed a fairly warm night. Got up 6.35 am. A bit chilly, windy and warm day. After breakfast I made some wedges for the wheelbarrow.
The party started at 8.15 am and I at 8.30 am. I overtook them at about 9.00 am. At 9.40 am we crossed a beautiful creek like the Wilson Creek.
Lovely scenery and plenty of Flood gums, a good indicator for gold about here. At 12.00 pm we halted in a small creek. We had dinner at 12.30 pm, seven or eight miles from the last camp.
We started again at 1.30 pm. After travelling about 500 or 600 yards Tom Carmichael picked up a nice specimen showing a good bit of gold. I stayed behind for a while specking, found nothing. I wished I had a fair supply of tucker. I would like to do some prospecting about here. At 3.15 pm we crossed the Bawden Range again. From whose summit we saw a track leading northward. The range seems to run north and south a little. At 3.50 pm we came to a soak about three feet deep, dug by the hand of man, lying in a shady and sandy place. Here we camped. It is about 13 or 14 miles from the last camp. Immediately set to work mending the awful barrow. She is giving me a terrible time. Partook of the evening meal. Baked a little damper; 3£bs flour. [29]
Did a little scribbling by firelight. At 8.30 pm laid down to rest on a bed of Mulga boughs.
P.S. At 7.15 am; porridge, a bit damper, syrup and tea. Dinner 12.30 pm; a bit damper, sausage and cocoa. Supper 6.30 pm; rice, bit damper, bit cheese and cocoa. The country we passed through is a real good country for prospecting for gold. It has plenty Mulga, Sandalwood and Quondongs and other trees and bushes. [...]
Sunday August 11, 1895 I passed a pretty cold night. A strong wind blew all night. I got up at 6.40 am. Chilly morning and warm day.
We started at 8.15 am. After travelling three and a half miles we came to the main road from which we branched off yesterday. Here I noticed written upon the ground; Water 3 1/2 miles. With an arrow pointing to it. At 10. 10 am we crossed Station Creek five miles from our last camp. It is a large and beautiful creek about two chains wide. Its banks about six feet high. At 11.25 am we passed at the right hand of the road a beautiful table blow. At 12.15 pm we had dinner. At 4.30 pm we came to a little creek with a good water hole. We camped here for the night. It is about six miles west of Mount Malcolm and about a 114 miles from Lake Darlot. The country we passed through today is good for prospecting. I saw a lot Sandalwood, Quondongs and poor Mulga and scrubs. The soil is poor. The water hole on which we are camping is about one chain long and about two yards wide and about one foot deep.
Six Miles West Of Mt. Malcolm - August 12, 1895 I passed a cold night. I got up at 6.30 am. I was the first to get up. I lit the fire. Cold morning and warm day. After breakfast Tom Carmichael and the rest of the party decided to halt all day and do a little prospecting. Jack McTamaray and I went out together westward of the camp. When we got a good way out we parted. I went out over three miles prospecting found nothing. Although the country looked very promising. I got back at 12.05 pm. None of the party specked anything. I laid down to have a rest and finished to read Sir Walter Scott's "Lady of the Lake". I baked a little damper; 3£bs of flour. Carmichael gave me about 2£bs oatmeal this morning. I am eating as little as possible now. If I do not get some gold at Pendennie I shall eat very much less. I washed a pair socks and a handkerchief. At 7.30 am; porridge, damper, syrup and cocoa. At 12.3 0 pm a little porridge, a bit damper, boiled beef and cocoa. [...]
August 13, 1895 I passed a pretty cold night. Got up at 6.30 am. Chilly morning and warm day. [30] 
We started at 8.00 am. At 10.00 am I reached Mt. Malcolm. The track lead on northern side of the Mount. Left the wheelbarrow and climbed to the very top of the Mount. Got there at 10.10 am from which I obtained a splendid prospect of the surrounding country. I think this Mount is 300 feet high, over two miles circumference at the base. The top is flat (with a cairn) about a mile around. If I am correct Sir John Forrest named this Mt. after Sir Malcolm Fraser. It is situated about 120 miles from Lake Darlot and 10 miles east of Mount Leonora. Quartz and iron are its principal rocks. Mulga, Sandalwood, Quondongs and scrubs abound about it. At 1 .45 pm I crossed Bummer Creek. It is about five yards wide. Whose banks are about five feet high and whose bed covered with sands. At 5.30 pm we camped on the northern side of a hill about 131 miles from Lake Darlot. The country we traversed today is a bit hilly in place, soil pretty poor, vegetation - Mulga, Sandalwood and Quondongs, Salt bush and other scrubs. At 7.30 am; porridge, a bit damper, syrup and cocoa. At 2.55 pm; damper, a bit of tinned boiled beef and cocoa. At 6.15 pm; rice, damper, syrup and cocoa. Scribbled by firelight. Retired 7. 15 pm. [...]
August 14, 1895 I passed a pretty cold night. A strong and cold wind blew all night. I got up at 6.3 5 am. Cold morning and warm day.
We started at 8.00 am. About one mile after leaving the camp, we began to go across a watershed dipping south. At 9.45 am we came to a creek and also to the Frenchy Soak. They were both dry. Then we steered due north. After travelling over two miles we noticed that we had lost our way. We turned back at 10.00 am and picked the right track. We halted for dinner at 12. 15 pm and started again at 1.50 pm. We travelled hard to get to the water. At 5.00 pm we thought that we had passed the water. At same time we noticed a cart wheel track and blackfellow's footprints leading due west. We decided to follow it. At same time McTamaray, Rowley and Keenan walked ahead at a quick pace to explore. At 5.30 pm we met our three men coming back with the news, that they had found two prospectors with two black gins and were informed that the water was three miles from where we had turned off, so we turned back and reached the Kilkenny Soak at 7.20 pm which is situated about 148 miles from Lake Darlot. The Kilkenny Soak lies in a sandy creek, pretty well flat ground all around it. There are three or four holes, from four to five feet deep with a little water in them. We travelled over 17 miles today. All good looking country for prospecting. We passed today vegetation - Mulga, Sandalwood, Quondongs, Cotton and Salt bushes, a few Orange trees (not the real ones), some Kurrajong trees. The most stately one was standing by the track and being about 25 feet high and it is the most glorious beautiful and noble one I ever seen. Its beautiful leafy branches, they out spread from the main trunk and gracefully droop. It was getting dark and I could not take much notice of it. [31] I have had a very trying day pushing the wheelbarrow over rocky hills and sandy plains. At 7.15 am; porridge, damper, syrup and tea. At 12. 15 pm; damper, bit boiled beef and cocoa. At 8.05 pm; rice, bit damper, syrup and cocoa. It is over 34 miles since left the last water. Too tired tonight to make a bed, only a bag under me to sleep on. [...]
August 15, 1895 I passed a middling warm night. I got up at 6.50 am. Chilly morning and warm day. We could not start early today as Carmichael had to fill his tank as the Kilkenny is making water very slowly. When I got up this morning I noticed a party of three men were camped by the soak. At 7.30 am or a little after, three black gins (and one buck) arrived. The gins accosted one of the party and he led one of them in the bush. Probably he gave her a piece of damper. This action inspired one of our own crowd named Tom Bentley, better known the "Snob", he too led another one in the bush. When he came back we chaffed him about his action. He said the promenade was as good to me as a feed of cabbage. I gave her only a three penny bit.
We started at 12.50 pm and travelled only eight miles. We camped at the Bricky Soak at 5. 10 pm. This so called soak lies in a watercourse, running north and south. There are several holes sunk to a depth of five to six feet with not a drop of water in any of them. There are six big Cork trees here. One of them is over 20 high. The trunk is over one diameter. At the northern side is a stripped patch of bark on it is imprinted an "Arrow", under is marked B.82. I had a fairly good road today for the barrow. Mostly level country with day creeks, good horse feed. Passed some hills at the left. Passed Mulga, Kurrajongs, Sandalwood and scrubs. Everytime I had a spell this afternoon I read a stanza or two of Sir Walter Scott's Lady of the Lake. We are about 156 miles from Lake Darlot and about 14 miles from Pendennie. This evening I baked four little Johnny cakes of my last half pound of flour. At 7.45 pm I laid down to rest on a Mulga leaf bed.
P.S. At 7.30 am some soup made of dry vegetables, a bit damper, syrup and teas. 12.10 pm; rice, damper, mutton and cocoa. At 6.15 pm; porridge, a bit damper, a bit boiled mutton (tinned) and cocoa.
The Bricky Soak named after Bill Ebsary and Bob Horetop, two bricklayers. [...]
August 16, 1895 I passed a fairly warm night. Got up at 6.45 am. Chilly morning and warm day.
I started before the party (8.00 am) and travelled very hard. Save from 1.00 pm to 1.45 pm for dinner. Arrived to Pendennie 4.45 pm. I think I travelled over 15 miles today, that makes over 170 miles from Lake Darlot. [32] It has taken me 13 days to span that distance. After leaving Bricky Soak the road led over a great deal of granite country. About seven miles from Pendennie the road runs along a chain of cliffs extending about east and west and are honeycombed with caves and they make a beautiful sight. Scraggy pines and Mulga and scrubs abound in the cliffs. About five miles this side of Bricky Soak I passed two gnamma holes in granite rocks, one them is about six or seven feet deep about 10 feet across and about 15 feet around. The other one is about three feet deep and about 10 feet around. The country I passed through today is slightly hilly and poor of horse feed (poor soil). I passed Sandalwood, Quondongs, Mulga, Kurrajongs, Salt bush and other scrubs. This is the provision which still I have with me; about four oz of sugar, about five oz tea, two tins meat, about two oz syrup, about two oz cocoa, one tin Nestles milk, two cakes of compressed vegetable (these are very flavourless, made by Swallow and Ariel), 1£b rice and 5 / 8d cash.
Here I pitched my tent. I went to the only storekeeper here. He has his goods in a tent. He is French Switzer and a real Jew. I asked him to sell me 2£bs of oatmeal as I cannot afford to buy a full bag. He let me have a burst bag for 2 / 6. It has about 4£bs meal. He gave me half gallon (gratis) water. He is the only one who has flour on this field. He has 10 bags of 100£bs each. He declined to sell it by the lb. He says if there is a rush to the Hawk's Nest he will get £3 per 50£bs or £6 per 100 lb bag. However I got 2£bs flour for two shillings. He said was only obliging me at that price. The old fellow has not a pair of scale but he measured the flour in pannikin. He said his pannikin hold just a lb but through the largeness of his heart he allowed me a couple of spoonful flour over the 2£bs. ..
The party with horses and cart did not overtake me today. At 7. 15 am; a bit damper, a boiled mutton and tea. At 1 .00 pm; a bit Johnny cake and cocoa. At 6.40 pm; ditto...
Pendennie - August 20, 1895 I do not know how this place was named Pendennie, probably it was named from Pendennis the hero of Thackeray's novel or else after the Pendennis Castle at Falmouth, England. Anyhow it was discovered by a party of five men about the middle of last month or thereabouts whom it is said they applied for a reward claim and got 10 men's ground. It is said three of the prospectors are named R. Woods and a M. Slater or Slattery, another named Lindsay. I am not certain of these names. The ground consists of one main gully. It runs about north and south. Roughly the top end is about 139 yards wide. The bottom end about a 150 yards wide, about half a mile long. Its bottom is cement. Very little gold has been found outside the prospectors' claims. At the east side of the gully is a high iron blow. From its top Mt. Margaret can be seen. There are a lot Kurrajongs about Pendennie. There is here also a fair mob of blacks. The poor creatures are hungry and the gins are offering their sable bodies for what they can get. The only dress they wear is castoff dirty shirts barely reaching below the navel. Some base white lotharios have initiated in the vile trade, a very young girl. [33] She wears a dirty tattered coat down to her ankles. Most of them are still naked.
I met Tom Carmichael and he told me that Jack McTamaray has gone to the Hawk's Nest Rush. I have decided to try my luck on that field myself. It is 35 miles from here. I only found about four grains of gold since I've been here and I have now only four penny left and there is little prospect of me getting a few Dwts gold. There are still about 100 men, whereas last month there were between 500 to 600 men. The water here is the same price as at Lake Darlot, 4d a gallon. I am told that the Pendennie Soak is eight miles south of the field. [...]
August 21, 1895 I passed a pretty cold night. Got up 6.30 am. Chilly morning and warm day. As soon as I woke up I went to see Jack... who promised me a little flour yesterday. He was just partaking of his breakfast. He said the flour is inside the tent, help yourself I said how much shall I take? As much as you want he said. I took 3 or 4£bs. I said I might do such for you some day. He climbed on a big Mulga tree and he indicated to me the direction to Mount Margaret. He also gave me about three pints of water. At 7.05 am I ate a bit porridge, 2 or 3ozs damper, a little syrup and tea. Kneaded the flour, baked the damper from 8.45 am to 9.30 am. Meanwhile I repaired the wheelbarrow.
At 10.55 am I started for Mount Margaret, 25 miles from Pendennie. After travelling about two miles west on the same road which I came from Lake Darlot, I then steered due north through the thick bushes. I got my hands scratched and the flies flocked on them like a swarm of bees. Been a warm day. They picked at my eyes. At 12.15 pm I had a bite to eat; a bit damper, syrup and tea.
Started again at 12.55 pm. After sunset at 5.30 pm I struck the road and camped. I think I have travelled about 13 miles today. I have had a terrible day through the thick bush, the heat and the flies worried me very much. Above this the thirst to added to my discomfort. I left Pendennie with about three pints of water. I lit the fire, made by bed under a Mulga tree with some Mulga boughs. At 6.45 pm I ate a bit damper, bit onion, bit tinned beef sausage and about three tablespoonfuls of water. I am very thirsty. I have only a little drop left for the morning. When I left Pendennie this morning, I had the damper (baked this morning) about 2£bs oatmeal, one tin meat, four onions (not lbs) a little syrup, a bit sugar and tea, and about three pints water. The country I passed through today is level with thick bush, Mulga, Kurrajongs, Quondongs, Sandalwood and other bush (scrubs). Done a little scribbling by firelight, retired at 8.30 pm. [34] [...]
August 22, 1895 Passed a fairly warm night, but tormented by the thirst all night. My tongue got so dry it seemed to me like I had a piece of wood in my mouth. Craving for water it kept me awake all night. Had a little sleep towards morning. I got up at 6.40 am. Chilly morning and warm day. At 7.15 am late a little damper with syrup and drank last drop of water, about two tablespoonful.
At 7.35 am started travelling as fast as I could. At 8.30 am I began to cross some arms of Lake Carey. At this stage the perspiration was so great that I felt like I had water in my boots. At 9.10 am I reached an Afghan camp, there were four of them with 17 camels. They were just starting to load the goods for Mount Margaret. I asked for a drink of water. They pointed out a little bucket. I drank like a horse. I think fully five pints. Meanwhile I felt a little ill so I sat down for a little while they filled my four pints billy can and I thanked the Afghans and walked on. At 10.15 am I met two men on horse back. I had a talk with them. They said that a pool of water is a quarter of mile ahead and they also put me on the short road to Mount Margaret. At 10.25 am I reached the Cement Creek with a beautiful pool of fresh water about three chains long and about 15 feet wide, depth unknown. Here I had another drink and filled my two waterbags. Had another drink. Had chat with a chap.
Started again at 12.00 pm. At 12.20 pm had lunch, damper, bit beef sausage and tea.
Started again at 1.15 pm on the newly surveyed road. From 2.41 pm to 3.30 pm I crossed the northern part of Lake Carey. At about 3.45 pm I came to a very steep piece of the road. They call it the "Jump Up". I had to muster all my strength to push my barrow to the top. I reached the Mt. Margaret Reward Mine at 4.30 pm and immediately I interviewed the manager "Captain J.J. Paul". I explained to him my hard luck. I said, "If you will be kind enough to let me have some tucker I will work for it." He said, "Alright old man, you shall have it. We might be all like you some day." I thanked Mr Paul. I pitched my tent, lit the fire, had supper at 7.00 pm; porridge, damper, bit beef sausage and tea. Made my bed of Mulga boughs and retired at 9. 15 pm. I travelled 12 miles today or perhaps more. The Cement Creek is seven miles from the mine by the surveyed road.
P.S. As I am writing 45 years after the event related above, I may state that the Mt. Margaret Reward Battery was started on Monday September 21, 1896 as soon as the engineer Mr McKay set the machinery in motion. Mrs Paul cracked a bottle of wine on the flywheel. Both residents and the employees of the company, by invitation of Mr Paul were present. See the Coolgardie Courier of October 10. 1896. [35]
Mt. Margaret - August 31, 1895 From August 23 to August 31, that is today, I have been chopping firewood for Mr Paul at rate of £4:: per week. The timekeeper (as well as the storekeeper for the company) made up my time. It comes to £5.6.8. so I got nine shillings and three pence in coins. The rest paid for goods which are as follows; 50£bs flour, £1. 16.6, two bags of oatmeal (7£b each) 11 / -, 5£bs sugar 5 / -, six tins Nestles milk 9 / -, 3£bs potatoes 4 / 6-, two tins baking powder 3 / -, nine tins meat 14 / -, 5£bs rice 5 / -, 2£bs salt 2 / -, half pound tea 1 / 5-, two tins jam (of 2£bs tin) 5 / -, two lbs onions 3 / -, one pound dry vegetables 2 / 6-, two boxes matches 6d.
Although I have had a tough job chopping up Mulgas, Gidgis and gums on account of the axe being full of gaps I have received much kindness since I have been here. I have been camping near a young man named William Ryan. He is 25 years of age. He is from Taranaki, New Zealand and he is an excellent young man indeed. He works at the mine. Tomorrow is Sunday and I will ascend once more the summit of Mount Margaret which is about two miles or so from the mine.
P.S. The mine which Mr Paul is the manager is called "Westralian" that is West Australia which is a Reward claim. It has already four shafts whose depth are 66ft, 70ft, 80ft and 110 feet. [...]
September 2, 1895 I passed a middling warm night, a shower of rain fell during the night. I got up at 6.30 am. It looked like rain, though kept dry and a little cloudy all day and a light cool wind blew all day from south to north. Breakfast at 7.30 am; porridge, damper, canned mutton and tea. Baked a damper from 8.30 am to 9. 15 am with about 5£bs flour. Meanwhile repaired the wheelbarrow and loaded it.
At 11.00 am I bid goodbye to Billy Ryan and started for the Red Flag which is 12 miles from Mount Margaret, also I have too much on the wheelbarrow. At 12.30 pm I had lunch; damper, canned mutton and water. Just then Mr J.J. Paul from the big quartz hill came along on horseback. He stopped to talk to me. I again thanked him for his kindness to me. He said I might want some tucker myself someday. He wished me good luck and passed on. I started again at 1. 15 pm. At 5. 15 pm I came to an alluvial (worked out) patch of ground with two roads, one leading south-east, the other due west. Got puzzled which one to take. I followed the south-east, after I travelled a mile or so I noticed that the sun had gone down and left a clear sky and a streak of golden clouds in the westerly region. I felt very anxious to meet a human being. At 6.05 pm I came to a very high hill of iron boulders. I ascended to the top of it. Saw no sign of camps, fire and smoke. Nothing but flat country over which deep silence pervaded and the sombre form of Mount Margaret loomed afar. Returned to the wheelbarrow and camped. [36]
Tommy Windich was 29 years old when he was relieved of his duties as native Constable to join John Forrest in his first expedition in search of Dr Leichhardt. He was John Forrest's constant companion and usually rode with him at the head of the party. He was a first-class bushman and invaluable as a water finder.
In appreciation of his loyal service, John Forrest, named WINDICH SPRINGS in Tommy's honor. After Tommy Windich's death, John Forrest wrote,
"This faithful and intelligent native has passed away, he was still a young man and for the past 10 years had been closely connected with every exploration in this colony. Twice he crossed from Perth to Adelaide and took a prominent part in the explorations. He has died away from all his old friends, but his name is almost a household word.
I will take steps to have his grave marked".
The headstone is in the Esperance Museum and it states,
"Erected by John and Alexander Forrest in memory of Tommy, Born near Mt. Stirling 1840. Died at Esperance May 1876. He was an aboriginal native of West Australia of great intelligence and fidelity". [37]
At 6.20 pm lit a big fire against a big Mulga, made my bed of Mulga boughs. Supper 7.05 pm; damper, cooked mutton and tea. Retired at 9.10 pm. The country passed through today is flat, poor soil covered with Mulga, Quondongs, Kurrajongs, Sandalwood and scrubs, plenty of quartz and ironstone about.
P.S. I am camping about 200 yards below the ironstone blow. It is calm and a fine moonlight night. I travelled fully 14 miles today. [...]
Red Flag - September 3, 1895 I passed a fairly warm night. Got up 6.40 am. Chilly morning and warm day. Breakfast 7.10 am; damper, canned beef, onion and tea.
Puzzled about the whereabouts of the Red Flag, started travelling at 8.00 am. Met a man with a horse and cart, with a tank of water coming from Windich Brook, which is 14 miles from the Red Flag. He informed me that I was upon the wrong track, that I had passed it yesterday and I was now seven miles from it. I got a surprise. He gave me some water and I turned back and reached my destination at 1. 10 pm. Feeling tired travelling over rough ground I pitched my tent against a Mulga tree facing east at the north-west of the well which is situated about midway between the Red Flag and the Hawk's Nest.
These mining patches are in line and about three miles apart. Boiled the billy and had dinner at 1.50 pm. Same as per breakfast. Afterwards got the loan of a rope from the man I met on the track and went to the well to fill my waterbags, which is 90 feet deep and makes very little water. It took me nearly two hours to get about four gallons. Supper at 6.55; porridge, damper, apple jelly and tea. Passed the evening by the fire, retired at 9.40 pm.
Red Flag - October 2, 1895 It will be a month tomorrow since I came to the Red Flag and Hawk's Nest. After working very hard and spent long hours at the well getting water I have managed to get about 14 Dwts of gold. I got mostly outside the other men's claims on the pearling ground. Some days I do not feel well at all. I have decided to go down near Coolgardie and get underground work in one of the mines now that the hot weather is drawing near. I have a very forlorn hope of striking a few ozs gold outside the claims. Today I only got a half grain of gold.
As the memory of most men is both short and defective I will get down a few things about this field that is both the Red Flag and Hawk's Nest as far as I have heard by the camp fire at night in case I might get a fit of curiosity in future years to know aught of the past. [38] [39] [40] [41] [42] 
October 4, 1895 I passed a warm night. Got up at 6.30 am. Chilly morning and warm day. At 7.30 am; porridge, damper, boiled tin beef and cocoa. At 8.00 am Armand came to say goodbye. While he was going to work he told me that yesterday he set in to work where I knocked off and that he had not been digging five minutes when found a 5 Dwts piece of gold. So you are leaving gold behind. [43] I said good luck to you Armand if I had struck that piece it might of induced me to do a lot of dead work for many days and we might have had many more talks by the camp fire at night but as I do not feel too well some days so I have decided to go. We parted to meet no more. I went at once to the well. It took me till 9.00 am to draw a half gallon water.
I started at 11.00 am. I have a pretty heavy load on the barrow; tools, shaker, sieve, pick and shovel, some tucker, waterbags and sundries things. At 12. 10 pm had lunch; damper, boiled beef and tea. Started again at 1. 10 pm. Arrived at Mount Margaret Mine at 5.00 pm and camped along side Billy Ryan's tent. Had supper at 5.45 pm. Billy gave me some stew, bread and two pannikin tea. I presented him with a little nugget of gold weighing two or three Dwts. He refused to take it so gave me 8 / 6 in silver and some flour. He baked a damper and after took it out I baked a damper too in the same ashes from 8.00 pm to 9.30 pm; 4£bs flour in it. Meanwhile done some scribbling by moonlight. Billy went to bed at 8.45 pm and I at 9.45 pm.
P.S. Today I had several spells on the track for a few minutes at time. I read in each spell a few lines from a book titled Andy by Samuel Lover. I picked up this amusing book on a deserted camp at Pendennie, At 1. 50 pm a camel team passed me on the track laden with provisions for the Red Flag. Poor Procter for who they made a collection tin at Red Flag and on September 29 is camping near Billy Ryan and he looks the picture of death. A teamster refused to take him to Coolgardie for fear he might die on the way and get in a fix to have a dead man on his wagon. [...]
October 5, 1895 Slept quite well last night. Up 6.00 am. Slightly chilly morning and warm day. Breakfast at 7.00 am. Billy Ryan gave me some stew made of tin meat and potatoes, damper and a pannikin of tea. Before breakfast I went to Mr Paul. He gave me a note to take it to the condenser man who filled my two waterbags. Mr Paul let me weigh the gold I got at the Red Flag. Was just 14 Dwts. I gave him a piece of gold nearly two Dwts with a bit quartz on it and again thanked Mr Paul for his kindness to me.
At 8.00 am bid goodbye to Mr Paul and Ryan, and off on the track once more. At S.45 am I passed the jump up and thence across Lake Carey. At 9. 10 am I came to a stick about three feet high and a piece board nailed on it inscribed thereon: To the Pride of Mount Margaret half mile
with an arrow on the ground. I rested for a while on a big block of quartz about eight yards around about two feet high. A little further north Stands two more quartz blocks. At 9.50 am I got over the Lake. [44]
At 11.30 am passed Cement Creek (before that the spot where I had dinner on August 22nd).
At 11.50 am I got on the main road to Coolgardie and here I had lunch; damper, boiled tin mutton and tea.
Started again at 1.10 pm. At 2.30 pm I passed two men with two camels going up. At 2.35 pm I passed where the Afghans gave me a drink on August 22nd. At 5.00 pm I passed where I camped on August 21. At 5.25 pm I came to a new road leading to the Pendennie Field, at least I think so. It branched off south-east and at 5.30 pm I camped three miles or so west of Lake Carey. I think I have travelled 14 miles today. From Cement Creek up to here the road has been too sandy for the barrow and took every ounce of my strength to push it this afternoon. I lit the fire and while the billy was boiling I made my bed under a branchy young Mulga (with boughs and two sheepskins) about eight yards off the road. Supper at 5.50 pm, same as per lunch with piece onion. Done a little scribbling by firelight. Retired at 8.45 pm. [...]
Sunday October 6, 1895 Passed a good warm night. Got up 6.00 am. Chilly morning and warm day. Breakfast 6.30 am; damper, jam and cocoa. [45]
Rolled the things, loaded the barrow and started at 7.00 am and arrived at Pendennie at 2. 10 pm. Very bad road for the barrow, sandy nearly all the way. I think I have travelled 12 miles today. I camped 52 yards south where I had camped before. Made my bed against a Mulga tree. Bought a gallon water 6d. Had dinner and supper combined at 3.50 pm; porridge, damper, tinned mutton and tea. After meal took a walk about. I see that there are only about a dozen men left here now. All the blacks have levanted for some other field and Messrs Slater, Woods and party, the original prospectors of this field are applying for a 12 acres lease below the reward claim. The notice posted on one of their pegs is dated September 5, 1895. They are going to sink a shaft where there is cement and quartz below. Pendennie appears to me a dismal place. They have cut down the Kurrajongs where I camped last August. I returned to my camp at 6.45 pm. I read three chapters of the book Andy (by Samuel Lover) six to eight chapters and retired at 8.30 pm. [...]
October 7, 1895 I slept well last night, warm. I got up 6.30 am. Chilly morning and warm day. Breakfast at 6.50 am; some meat and potato stew, damper and tea. After breakfast I went to the store and sold my bit of gold 9 Dwts and 18 grains. I received £1.14.10. I bought the following goods:- two tins meat 3 / -, two lbs rice 2 / -, two lbs sugar 2 / -, one tin milk 1 / 6, 1£b candles 1 / 6, half tin cocoa 1 / 5, a tin curry 1 / , small bottle ink 6d, 1 lb potatoes 1 / 6, one gallon water 6d. Got cash £1.0.l. This done I left Pendennie at 8.25 am and I arrived at Pyke's Gully 12.15 pm which is seven miles east of Pendennie and one mile and a half from Lake Carey. Had dinner at 100 pm; damper, plum jam and tea. After meal I pitched my tent. At 3.00 pm I went out to look around the place. I met two Victorian chaps. They gave me a drink of warm tea. Had a talk with them for about 15 minutes. Got back to my camp 6.45 pm. Supper at 7.30 pm; damper, boiled mutton and tea afterwards. Went to get a gallon water 6d - and baked a damper 3£bs flour from 8.55 pm to 9.30 pm. Retired at 9.45 pm.
October 8, 1895 Passed a cold night and awake for hours before I fell asleep. Arose 6.30 am. Chilly morning and warm day. Worked all day making a shaker. Finished after tea then read some pages from the book Andy and retired 9.20 pm.
P.S. Boiled mutton and potato stew and cocoa for breakfast (7.00 am). At 12.00 pm; damper, plum jam and tea. At 6.15 pm; rice with milk, damper and tea. Bought one gallon water 6d.
October 9, 1895 I slept well last night. Got up 6.30 am. Slightly chilly morning and warm day. I worked very hard from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm on the large patch at the east of the Bare Hill and I raised two fine colour of gold. [46] There are about 20 men there and I have very poor chance of getting a few Dwts outside their claims and I feel certain if I stay here too long I will get hard up. So I will be on the track again tomorrow while I have the little provision and the few shillings. After I knocked off I made a Johnny cake for supper. Afterwards baked a damper (over 3£bs flour) from 9.00 pm to 9.45 pm and retired at 10.00 pm.
P.S. At 7.15 am; porridge, damper, boiled mutton and cocoa. At 12.00 pm; damper, boiled mutton and tea. At 7.50 pm; potato and meat stew, Johnny cake and tea. Bought two gallons water one shilling. [...]
October 10, 1895 I was awake for hours last night before I could get any sleep. I got up at 6.30 am. A rather mild morning and very sultry all day. Very warm indeed and the flies Very troublesome all day. Breakfast at 7. 15 am; potato and roast mutton stew, damper and cocoa. Loaded up the barrow and started on the track at 8.15 am. At 10.05 am I met two men going to Pyke's Gully with two horses and dray, with a tank of water on it. Asked to sell me hall gallon water. They gave it to me gratis. At 11. 50 am I halted for lunch. Bit of roast mutton, damper and cocoa. [47]
Started again at 1.05 pm and I arrived to Pendennie Soak at 3.25 pm. As I was approaching the soak, huge clouds began to roll up from the west. I hastened to pitch my tent 300 yards west of the soak. At about 3.45 pm the wind arose to such a high pitch in another moment a mighty cloud of dust enveloped the whole place and it seemed like a dark night. You could not see a yard ahead. The storm was accompanied by successive loud thunders and lightning flashes which momentarily illuminated the darkness. At 4.00 pm a few big drops of rain fell and the storm was over. It rolled eastward a few miles south of Pendennie and by 4.30 pm was all clear. Supper 6.30 pm; rice, mutton, damper and jam and tea. After meal, took a walk about the place. I retired at 8.25 pm.
The Pendennie Soak This soak is situated in an open and wide level country extending around the soak for many miles. Nearby to the east I noticed some hills. Nearby to the south-east of them are two high hills. They look like quartz blows. The soak consists of five or six holes, five feet to six feet deep and a foot in circumference and each of them has a little water in it. There is a heavy drain. It supplies Pendennie, Pyke's Gully, the Eucalyptus and prospectors about it. Horses and camels are also watered here. They say that the natives call this soak Lindgi Myah but I am not quite certain that this is the correct spelling. They say that Kurnalpi lies 60 miles south-east from here. There are two stores here in little Calico buildings. The Pendennie Field is eight miles from here and Pyke's Gully 12 miles. [...]
October 11, 1895 It was pretty cold last night I got up at 6.30 am and warm day. Breakfast 7.05 am; porridge, damper, plum jam and cocoa. Started on the track at 8.25 am. After travelling about a mile a young man named Parry Ryan with three horses and dray going to the Southern Cross overtook me, offered to carry my heaviest things on the dray and I pushed the barrow behind. At 12.30 pm we halted for dinner. I ate damper, boiled beef and tea.
We started again at 3.00 pm. After travelling 11 miles at 5.00 pm we came to the junction of two roads, one leading west to Niagara thence to Menzies. Parry said this is my road so took down my things. We shook hands and I thanked him and we parted. [48] The road for over three miles had been bad enough but now it began to get terrible for the wheelbarrow. Nothing but quicksand which it buried the wheel to its axle. After leaving Ryan I went over a sandhill then across a sand plain, a portion of an ancient lake, then over a sandhill again, then down, then up again. The sweat was pouring out of me like if I were taking a turkish bath. I found progress almost impossible and had to take a spell every two or three yards. At 6. 15 pm I felt awfully fatigued and as the shade of night was encompassing me I decided to camp for the night.
Just then I beheld a light at a distance. I made up my mind to get there. This time got a rope around my chest, the two ends tied to the front of the barrow and dragged it as if it were a sleigh. At 630 pm I reached the firm surface of Lake Rebecca. Got behind the barrow again and travelled at smart pace. At 6.45 pm reached Michael Burke's condenser and done my cooking on the condenser fire. Supper 7.50 pm; rice, boiled beef, damper, jam and cocoa.
After a little chat with Burke and his mate I laid down to rest at 8.25 pm.
P.S. I travelled 17 miles today from the time I parted with Parry Ryan. A westerly wind began to blow and by the time I reached the condenser, was blowing hard and when I laid down on my sandy bed the wind was blowing very keen and icy cold and I shivering with cold. [...] [49]
October 12, 1895 I passed a middling warm night. A keen westerly wind blew over the lake all night and I could not get any sleep. I got up at 6.30 am, cold morning, a bit windy and warm day. Breakfast 6.55 am. Mr Burke gave me some fried bacon (and two pannikin tea). I ate it with my damper. He also gave me 1£b and a half of Lake Rebecca salt and also filled my water bags with condensed water all gratis. I thanked him and his mate for their kindness. At 7.30 am I started on the track again. I had a terrible road all the way for the barrow. At 2.00 pm I reached Yerilla (10 miles from Lake Rebecca). I camped about 50 yards on the south of the condenser. There were four young men by the condenser, one of them had a bicycle. Here they saw me drawing near pushing the wheelbarrow. They burst out laughing because I looked anything but a picture of beauty. I travelled 10 miles today. After I had a little rest I walked about. I picked up a few scraps of newspapers, returned to my camp 5.45 pm and cooked my supper. Partook of it at 6.35 pm; rice and boiled beef (tinned), damper and tea. After supper I read the bits of newspapers and turned in at 9.30 pm.
P.S. My arms had a tough time today pushing the barrow over a rough road. Lunch at 11.30 am; damper, boiled beef, a potato and cocoa. The wind began to blow when I turned in to sleep.
Yerilla - October 13, 1895 (Sunday) I slept pretty well last night. Got up 6.05 am, chilly morning and pretty warm day. Breakfast 7.00 am; boiled beef, potatoes, damper and cocoa. Afterwards I walked about specking.
At 8.50 am I left for Mount Catherine which is five miles south-east of Yerilla and arrived there at 10.25 am. I found at the camp two young men and I refrained from asking their names One gave me permission to go to the top of Mount Catherine and when I came down I had a chat with him. He invited me to have dinner with him "at 12.00 pm". I had for dinner Sydney tripe with sauce, damper and two pannikin tea. He gave me also two gold specimens from the Mount Catherine which the buyers of the mine think it will go two ozs to the ton. But the finders of the mine say it will yield over five ozs per ton. At 12.35 pm I thanked the young man for his kindness and left for Yerilla. Arrived 2.35 pm. Rested for a while. Supper at 5. 10 pm; rice, boiled beef, damper and tea. Baked a damper (used 4£bs flour) from 7.00 pm to 8.00 pm. While the damper was baking a chap named Thompson from the Red Flag came over to my camp to have a chat by the campfire. He went away at 9.00 pm and I retired at 9.15 pm.
P.S. Bought one gallon water 6d. [...] [50] 
October 13, 1895 I left Yerilla for Mount Catherine at 8.50 am and arrived at base of it at 10.25 am. I reached the top at 10.30 am. It is a huge quartz blow. It runs north and south. It is 250 yards long and 70 feet high. It appears there is gold in all the stones and few can see some stain in some them. [51]
This great outcrop of quartz is something like a Dromedary's back. It has a watershed east and west and a slight depression in the centre. There are a lot blocks on the top of the Mount. The biggest one is on the northern side is about nine feet wide. The vegetation on the Mount is scanty. There is a Kurrajong about eight feet high some of its branches have been cut off. There is a Mulga, some black Oaks, Cotton bush and other scrubs. Methinks where the Mount now rises in the countless ages of the past was level ground. Nearly to the northern side the ground is quite level. With exception of this flat the rest of the country around the Mount is slightly hilly. The Mount Catherine Lease consists of 56 acres of ground. Below the highest point of the Mount (east side) is the shaft 35 feet deep with a west drive 24 feet long. The shaft is about six feet x three feet. I have been informed that Messrs O'Driscoll and Thompson have bought the Mount Catherine Mine for £15,000 cash with an interest in shares worth £1,000. The young man who entertained me to dinner today and showed me some of the visible gold on the outcrop and gave me two little gold specimens and allowed me to go up on the top of the Mount is one of the six prospectors and his name is Edward Trothiez. He said that he is expecting O'Driscoll any day. Roughly Mount Catherine is situated 120 miles in a straight line north of Coolgardie, about 80 miles (or so) north of White Feather, 30 miles south-west of Eucalyptus, about 40 miles N.E. of Goongarrie, about a 115 miles from Kurnalpi, 55 miles nearly north of Peake's Find, 24 miles south of Pendennie Soak and five miles south-east of Yerilla.
P.S. Edward Trothiez died on September 10, 1896. The prospectors camped on the western side near a little watercourse. [...] [52] [53]
October 14, 1895 I slept very well last night. I got up at 6.30 am. Chilly morning and warm day. Breakfast at 7.00 am; stewed potatoes and boiled beef, damper and cocoa. [54] Left Yerilla at 8.00 am. After travelling two miles (or more) at 9.20 am I came to a little sandy dry watercourse about five yards wide and three or four feet deep. Here I was compelled to stop. The wheel was just parting in half and the load most intolerable to carry it any further so I threw away most of the outfit. The shaker and upper, pick and shovel, the sieve, two prospecting dishes and other articles. I repaired the wheel and started again at 10.00 am. At 10.50 am (3 1/2 miles or so from Yerilla) I came to a signboard, written on it:- To the Ovens and Beechworth, the arrow was pointing west At the south of the board (nailed on a Mulga) was written Fletcher and Dalgliesse's Camp. I pushed on and I halted at 12.00 pm and boiled the billy and had lunch; damper, green-gage jam and cocoa. Whilst partaking of my lunch three diggers with two horses (one grey) and dray came along. They halted and boiled their billy on my fire and had their lunch. They were coming from the Eucalyptus.
I started again at 1.10 pm and they a little after. One of them walked in advance of the other two horses and dray. We walked together chatting as we marched along. At 3.35 pm we came where two men with horses and two wagons were resting. The man stopped to talk to the wagoners and I pushed on. When I had gone 200 yards one of the wagoners called me back. He said I will give you a lift on my wagon. We will travel in the cool of the night. So I thanked him for it. His name is Alfred Pearman. He has five horses and one hack. So I cooked my meal and had supper at 5.00 pm; rice and tinned beef sausage, damper and tea. After supper I read the 18, 19 and 20 chapters of the book Andy Andy by Samuel Lover. I am now 10 miles from Yerilla and about 10 miles from the Black Gin Rocks. We started travelling at 8.30 pm. [...]
October 15, 1895 Travelling last night was awfully unpleasant, cold all night. The sudden jerkings and bumping of the wagon nearly every five minutes was intolerable going along the unformed road. Three times during the night I had to get down and help Pearman to put the horses and wagon on the right track. First at about 1.00 am, second at 1.30 am and third at 3.30 am. We had to pull the wagon backward to right it on the track. I nearly lost my hat several times. The branches of the trees brushing over my face and head. This morning we reached the condenser at 6.30 am. I was told it is 28 1/2 miles from Yerilla. This condenser is conducted by Thomas Gibson and is situated in a dry salt lake which is two or three miles in circumference. He has a very shallow shaft, only a few feet deep. He kindly supplied me with water gratis. We passed the Donkey Rocks at 9.05 pm last night They say lies 17 miles south of Yerilla. There are some rocks and a little soak with very little water in it. They are sinking a well there now for fresh water. A man named Tassy Yuras is keeping a store in a little canvas building. It is said that these rocks got their name from a man known by nickname as "North Australia" who camped there with some donkeys. [55] The country between Yerilla and the Donkey Rocks is mostly sandy and the vegetation is Mulga, Oaks, Quondongs, Sandalwood and other bushes. 12 miles below the Donkey Rocks is a road bearing to The 90 Mile which is distant about 40 miles. Passed the time sleeping and re-reading some chapters of Andy Andy. We started travelling at 8.00 pm. [...]
October 16, 1895 Last night, after leaving the condenser at 8.15 pm and the Donkey Rocks at 9.05 pm. After we travelled for a while probably two or three miles both of us fell asleep. It was 12.55 am when I woke up and called Pearman and he started the horses again. After going about a mile at 1. 10 am the wagon came to a sudden stop. The horses had pulled it right against an oak tree. We hooked a horse behind it and pulled it backward to the road and we made another start. After travelling two or three miles the two of us fell asleep and we woke up at about daylight viz, about 6.00 am then we made a good start. We travelled till 9.05 am. We halted for breakfast. I ate tinned beef sausage and damper and cocoa. We watered the horses out of the tank and started again at 10.25 am. We reached Wangie Soak 1 1.55 am. Pearman allowed me five minutes or so to have a look at it. The soak is situated on Flat Rocks about 10 chains wide N.S. and about 20 chains long E-W. It lies on a clear patch. There are 12 holes roughly averaging about seven feet deep and only one them had water (it appeared about 10 feet deep). It had only a few gallons. The Wangie Soak lies 20 miles south of the Donkey Rocks and 10 miles from the Wiladdy Soak. We pushed on and we halted at 1.5 5 pm in a spacious flat just about midway between Wangie and Wiladdy soaks. I had dinner at 3.00 pm; rice, beef sausage, damper and tea. I spent the afternoon reading the 24 and 25 chapters of Andy Andy book by Sam Lover. Supper at 5.45 pm; damper, green gage jam and tea. We started to travel again at 8,00 pm.
P.S.1. Rough travelling and cold last night and warm day. The country we passed through last night and today is pretty well all sand with fairly dense vegetation, tall Mulga, Sandalwood, Oaks trees, scraggy Gums trees in patches and scrubs. We passed several belts of Spinifex, pretty tall and dense. The last two nights have been very unpleasant indeed. Full of bumping and jerkings. Whenever I chanced to lift my head above the sideboards of the wagon I would get a scratching on my head and face and even so to my legs.
P.S.2. The Skull Rocks lies about 12 miles above the Wangie Soak. [...]
October 17, 1895 We travelled all night. We passed the Wiladdiy Soak at about 9.00 pm. We camped 7.24 o'clock this morning, four miles south of the Split Rocks, about 18 miles from Wiladdy and about 10 miles from Broad Arrow. [56] I was aroused three times during the night, at about 1.00 am, 2.00 am and at 5.00 am. Each time the horses had left the road and jammed themselves and the wagon among thick bushes and each time Pearman used a fair amount of profane language. He told the horses that they were bastards, but as the poor things did not understand even a glossed Billingsgate language they did not contradict him. I got down three times to help him to right both horses and wagon on the track. As this is the very best feeding ground for horses I have seen on the Goldfields, so we are going to camp here till tomorrow morning. So I made my bed under a young Oak tree about 12 feet high. During the day baked a little damper. Used the last bit of flour about 2 1/2£bs. Had a good rest after having passed a rough night. I read from the book Andy Andy up to the 34 chapter. The country we passed through last night and this morning abound with Gum trees, Mulga, Sandalwood, Quandongs, Oak trees also called Sheoaks and other bushes. In some places the ground is clear. Breakfast 8.20 am; potatoes, beef sausage, damper and cocoa. Dinner 12.50 pm; rice, boiled beef and tea. Supper 6.20 pm; damper, green gage jam and tea. I turned in at 7.15 pm.
P.S. During the afternoon I mended my trousers. [...] [57]
October 18, 1895 I passed a good warm night. Got up at 5. 15 am. Mild morning and warm day. Breakfast at 6.20 am; damper, green-gage jam and cocoa.
We started for Broad Arrow at 8.10 am which is 14 miles from the Split Rocks. At 10.10 am we overtook a man carrying on his back a heavy swag, pick and shovel, a sieve, a tucker bag and a waterbag. Pearman let the man place all these on the wagon and the man walked ahead of us with only the waterbag in his hand. We reached Broad Arrow at 12.20 pm. I thanked Pearman for the ride, we shook hands and parted. I camped against a Gum tree about 300 yards south of the township. I picked up some scraps of newspapers and read them. Dinner at 2. 10 pm; boiled tinned beef and cocoa. This done then I took an exploring walk about the field. I returned to my camping place 6.30 pm. I pitched the tent and went to Carlyle's Store. I bought 1£b cheese 1 / 6 and one gallon water 6d. Supper at 7.3 5 pm; damper, cheese and tea. Done some scribbling and retired at 10.30 pm. [...] [58] [59]
October 19, 1895 (Saturday) I could not get any sleep last night until about 1.00 am. I was pretty warm all night. I got up at 6.00 am. Mild morning and pretty warm all day. After breakfast I mended the wheelbarrow and after I bought off the store a gallon water 6d. a loaf bread 9d.
At 10.30 am started for Bardoc with the intention of going by the Six Mile. After travelling for a while I came to two roads. I got puzzled which one to take. I followed the north-west. At 11. 10 am I came to the St. George mine. There I saw a young woman. She looked rather fresh considering she is feeding on "tinned dogs". I said "Will this road take me to Bardoc" She said "I think so", then I said it is a warm day. Yes it is warm day she replied. Then I saw a man. He said that I was on the road to Bardoc. After travelling about four miles I came almost to the end of the road I met another man. He said that I was on wrong road. He directed me to strike across the bush and get on the right road in a mile. I had a great treat travelling through thick bush and rough ground. When I got half way, to my surprise I met a young man who I had met at Mount Margaret. He had at that time a sick mate. We had a talk. We shook hands and parted. I first met him on August 23rd. I struck the road at 2.10 pm and halted for lunch. Started again at 3.15 pm. Reached Bardoc at 5.00 pm and I had quite a job to find a clean spot to camp. Night soil and filth everywhere Camped about 200 yards west of L.J. Dudley's Bardoc Hotel and about 300 yards southwest of Mount Eva which is a high ironblow. I had a look about the place and went to buy a gallon of water 6d. 4£b flour 1 / 9 and 1£b rice 6d. After tea I read some scraps of newspapers. I retired at 10.30 pm.
P.S. The distance between Bardoc and Broad Arrow is 10 miles, but by taking the wrong track I pushed the wheelbarrow today no less than 13 miles. For breakfast at 6.30 am, for lunch at 2. 15 pm and for supper at 7.35 pm ate bread, cheese and tea only. [60] 
Sunday October 20, 1895 I slept pretty well last night. I got up at 8.00 am. I think this is the latest morning I ever got up since I been in the Goldfields. Mild morning and warm day. After breakfast I started to read a lot scraps of newspapers which I picked up at Broad Arrow and also baked a damper 4£bs flour from 12.30 pm to 1.05 pm. After dinner I took a stroll to the cricket ground. They were busy playing a cricket match thence I went up on the top of Signal Hill. There I sat down and enjoyed a splendid prospect of the Bardoc Field. But here I saw a gathering of men at the north-west corner of the cricket ground. At once I rushed down and joined the crowd. They voted to the chair a Yank named Barnard Leslie. This man he is almost similar to the man that figure in Grants Great Mining Drama.
Leslie explained to the crowd that the meeting had been called for the purposes to establish the hospital which was badly needed. Then a lively discussion took place. Some wanted the hospital to be built at Bardoc. A speaker said we won't be able to support it. An Irish chap yelled Out we won't be able to keep a "rat" whilst others advocated to co-operate with the Broad Arrow people. After a little more discussion the chairman put the vote to the crowd and by the showing of the hands and those who want to establish a hospital jointly with the Broad Arrow were in majority. The meeting lasted from 4.50 pm to 5.30 pm. Of course the meeting (like the tinewald of Isle of Man) was held in open air and there were no seats. There were eight men present including myself There were no women at the meeting. As far as I know there are two of them at Bardoc; Mrs Dudley and Mrs Pond. Of all those on that crowd I only knew the following by name Messrs Paul Webster Mine Manager, Barnard Leslie, Dudley, the Hotel keeper, Jack O'Brian, Charlie Hansen, Samuel Baker, Pond and Martin Storekeeper. After the meeting I asked Mr Webster for a job. He told me to go to work to the Mount Eva Lease tomorrow night at 12 o'clock. Wage £4.10 per week. I thanked him very much for the favour. Mr Webster's company has taken three leases on option namely the Mount Eva, the Ennaminca and the Austrian. For the latter the prospectors are to get £5,000 if the company takes it up. For the other two I don't know what price for other leases. So I returned to my tent, had supper at 6.30 pm, read some scraps of newspapers and retired at 8.30 pm.
Sunday December 22, 1895 I passed night. My left leg was very sore all night. I got up at 9.05 am. Very hot day. Stayed all day in the camp and applied hot wet flannels to my leg without a bit good. I also read the Coolgardie Courier of 18th December. At about 3.00 pm I went to Cross's store (formerly Russell and Cross) bought two gallons water 1 / 8 and 2£bs onions 1/4. [61]
I retired 7.30 pm. For both breakfast 1000 am and supper 6.00 pm had damper and tea and for dinner 2.00 pm; stewed beef sausage, potatoes, onions and tea.
P.S. As Mr Webster is not certain whether there will be any work on those leases after the exemption, so I have decided to leave Bardoc on December 26th and as I have learnt a good deal of history of Bardoc by the camp fire so I will make a note of a few items.
Bardoc also spelled Bardock, Bardook and Barduk. Bardoc means in English "Wild Black Fellow" and therefore is not the name of a place. It was learnt by diggers at Broad Arrow from an Aborigine many weeks before Bardoc was discovered. The Bardoc fields contour undulating hilly country for miles around. The hills are mostly Ironblows or at least capped with iron ore. The most prominent of all those hills is Signal Hill covered with Ironstone and roughly it stands about 200 feet above the level ground.
Bardoc is situated about 10 miles north of Broad Arrow, about 32 miles north of Kalgoorlie, about 50 miles north of Coolgardie, about 22 miles north of Black Flag, via Broad Arrow about 20 or 25 miles south of the 90 mile, 12 miles northwest of the 45 mile, about 14 miles nearly west of the 42 mile, about 31 miles southwest of Wiladdie Soak, about 37 miles north of White Feather (Kanowna) about 28 miles east of Siberia (Waverley) via 54 mile.
The story of the discovery of Bardoc is this:- in the early part of July 1894 the natives looted some of the Digger's camps at Broad Arrow and on Sunday July 15th six young men namely: - Robert Pyni, McDonald, Conway, Connell, Bunbidge and Ferguson mounted on horseback went in pursuit of the robbers. They climbed on the summit of Signal Hill. They found that the Blacks had been camping on top of that eminence and on scenting the coming of the whitefellows they lost no time in levanting. The party decided to pass the night on the hill and resume the pursuit of blacks next day. On the morrow so luck willed they specked about 30 oz of gold on the surface of the ground about 200 yards west of Signal Hill. Of course all thoughts of pursuing the Blacks any further was abandoned.
They pegged three leases namely: the Grand Jewel, the Mount Pleasant and the Bank of England.
Soon after the Martin Brothers (three them) pegged the Excelsior. This lease was subsequently sold to McDonald and Company for £6,000 and they turn floated it in London for a £100,000. Besides those mentioned there a lot more leases taken up the same day (July 16, 1894) on which they specked the gold pegged out the leases. They decided to call the new find Bardock or Bardoc being the name for the wild black fellows which they had obtained from a native at Broad Arrow. Probably the natives had a name for Signal Hill but no one ever bothered his head to obtain it from them and consequently it is now lost for all time.
A day or two after the discovery of Bardoc, McDonald went to the White Feather for provisions and reported the new find and over 600 men rushed to the field After a few weeks the rush subsided. During the influx of so many men McDonald and party kept a little store, then Smith and Co. set up a store. [62] Then a young solicitor named Dwar started a store and kept the Post Office as well in the gully between the Mount Pleasant and the Mount Eva leases. One night last April he imbibed rather freely at Dudley Hotel and started to play with the revolver and shot himself in the leg. It is said that 12 men carried him to the White Feather Hospital on a hand cart. Not certain whether Dwar or Dewar his name.
The Martin Brothers opened a store, then a Jew named Reuben opened a store about the middle of October and sold out to J. Leyden. Martin Brothers sold out to Cross and he put in a man named All Russell to manage it for him. Dudley's Bardoc Hotel was opened on Saturday April 13, 1895 whilst the hotel was being built Mrs May Dudley arrived at Bardoc on March 18, 1895. Meanwhile she lived in a tent on the south slope of Signal Hill. On account of being the first white woman on this field (Bardoc) the boys celebrated the occasion with bonfire and songs on the summit of Signal Hill and drank to her health. Amidst this rejoicing they discharged a volley of 30 shots from Winchesters and revolvers. A chap named Charlie Grant who camped on the Nerrin Nerrin lease about two miles away wishing to know what was the hullababoo about. He came along and on nearing the top of the hill a volley was fired somewhat this scared Charlie. He turned back without joining the festive boys.
Charles John Moran, first member for the Goldfields visited Bardoc on November 16, 1895 and Barnard Leslie bestowed much flattery on him. Sir John Forrest visited Bardoc on November 26, 1895. Accompanied by a policeman and two reporters. He arrived at 7.45 am and left at 11.00 am. A petition for requirements of Bardoc was presented to him. [...] [63] [64] [65]
Bardoc - December 26, 1895 Ms Paul Webster has told me that it is very doubtful whether the company will do any more work on the leases under option after the exemption is over next month so as I am not encumbered with anything in Bardoc tomorrow I will be on the track again pushing the wheelbarrow. I returned the book titled Eldorado to Mr Barnard Leslie and had a long chat with him. [...]
December 27, 1895 Last night I slept well. Got up at 7.00 am. Warm day. Breakfast 7.30 am; a cake fried in dripping and cocoa. Afterwards I went to Cross's Store to get a gallon water. I only got half a gallon. He charged me 1/3 for it. He said the water was very scarce hence the price 2 / 6 per gallon. At 11.45 am I partook of some pea soup and drink tea. At 12.45 am I left Bardoc for good. At 1.40 pm I passed the Government Store. They are putting it down at the Junction of the Bardoc Wiladdi, Yerilla, Pendennie and Mt. Margaret Roads. There was nobody at the store.
Arrived at Broad Arrow at 4.45 pm. 10 miles from Bardoc. Camped 200 yards south of the old townsite and 18 yards east of the Black Flag Road. Pitched the tent against a withered oak tree. Bought off Flavelle Store one gallon water 7d, one lb potatoes it. one lb onions 7d. Partook of supper at 6.55 pm. After supper lit the candle and read the Coolgardie Courier dated December 28th. This paper is always dated ahead of its time.
P.S. This morning when I went to say goodbye to Jack O'Brien (and to Frank the Austrian) he told me that Charlie Jansen got drunk on Xmas day at Dudley's Bardoc Hotel and was robbed of all his money £14. He is now swearing that he will set fire to the pub. [...] [66]
December 28, 1895 I got up at 6.00 am. Breakfast at 6.30 am; 3 pieces of cake fried in dripping and cocoa. Afterwards I went to Flavelle's Store bought a gallon water 7d. Had a brief chat with one of the partners named Bill.
At 7.45 am I started for the Black Flag 11 miles south-west of Broad Arrow and reached at 12.45 pm. The road was fairly good for the wheelbarrow and the country I passed through with exception of some rises is pretty well level ground, fairly timbered with White Gum trees and Sandalwood, Quondongs, Kurrajong, Cotton and Salt bushes, Ironstone, quartz and Diorite rocks form the ground. I camped on the east of the brow of the hill under a Kurrajong tree, 250 yards off the Black Flag Hotel and about the same distance off the store. The Kurrajong is 15 feet high. The trunk measures 28 1/2 inches around and 65 inches high to the first branch.
At 3.00 pm I left for the Flag End, distance two and a half miles off townsite. Arrived 3.45 pm. Here are situated both the Proprietary Mine and the alluvial workings. I had a look at both and passed on to view the Dead Finish which lies one mile north of the Flag End and 3 1/2 miles north of the townsite. Here I met two men; Hansen and Windmill.
Left Dead Finish 5.15 pm. Passed Flag End 5.30 pm. Reached the townsite 6. 15 pm. Bought a tin apricots at Evan's Store 1 / 7. Boiled the billy and had supper at 7.00 pm. Afterwards had a chat with Evans the Storekeeper till 8. 15 pm. Then read the Coolgardie Pioneer of December 25th. At 9.45 pm retired on a bed made up of old bags. It has been a very warm day. It is now (9.45 pm) a lovely cool and moonlit night.
Lunch at 2.30 pm. Supper 7.00 pm; a piece of fried cake, a tin of apricots and a drink of tea. I have been told a few bits of history about this field today. I will write them down tomorrow. [...] [67] [68] [69] [70] 
Black Flag - December 29, 1895 (Sunday) I slept middling well. Got up at 7.00 am. Very hot day. I went to get a bag water 6d. Breakfast 8.00 am; porridge (Avena) and milk, a drink Cocoa. Afterwards took a stroll as far as St. David Mine. I called at the St. David Consolidated Mine. Here I met a Swede and a man from Victoria named Thomas. I had a chat with them. The latter said that there is a man at the White Feather named Mort Hare. He knows who committed the Bardoc murder. They gave me a drink water and I came back. The St. David Mine lies one mile south of township. Dinner at 1 .40 pm; a plateful of good soup made of tinned peas, onions and minced mutton and a drink Cocoa. Got another gallon water 6d and went for a stroll north and north-west of the township. Bought a loaf bread 10d. one lb cheese 1 / 7 and another gallon water 6d. Supper 6. 10 pm; bread, cheese and tea. Read a little of the Coolgardie Pioneer. At 6.50 pm I started down the road with the wheelbarrow. Reached Jack Larkin's condenser 8.00 pm. Two miles south of the Black Flag township. Camped here for the night. Had a chat with Larkin. Wrote this by moonlight and retired at 10. 15 pm.
P.S. Lovely cool and moonlight night. [...]
December 30, 1895 I got up at 6.00 am. Rolled up my things and loaded the barrow. Breakfast 6.50 am; bread and cheese and cocoa. At 7.25 am started for Kalgoorlie short cut 18 miles. A young man from New Zealand named Mawson came along with me a half mile to show me the track. I thanked him and we shook hands and parted. Alas for eight or nine miles the track turned out a vile one for the wheelbarrow. It led alternatively across dry lakes and sandhills, ups and downs it tried my strength to the utmost. At 12.00 pm halted for a spell and ate at 12.25 pm. Been very hot day. Out of the gallon water I bought this morning at Larkin's condenser 6d I drank very sparingly, the most of it evaporated. Everytime I took a mouthful I lost several spoonfuls of it by oozing out through the upper part of the waterbag. I drank the last drop at 1.00 pm and after that the thirst began to worry me, the heat very oppressive. Anon I took a rest under the shade of a tree for a few minutes at time. At 4.20 pm I struck the Black Flag - Kalgoorlie Road, four miles distance from Kalgoorlie and hereabouts I saw three mining pegs. On one of them there was a notice paper dated October 6, 1895 applying for a 24 acres lease and signed P. Matthews and party. In vain I searched the bushes for the prospector's camp. I cooeed twice - got no response. Feeling very tired and thirsty, planted the wheelbarrow and everything in the bush. Made a mark across the road with my dried up water bag.
Started for the town at 5. 15 pm. I came to the Mount Eliza Claim. Here I met a chap he had very little water but he very kindly gave me a good drink and I was relieved. [71] He said the town was about three (3) miles distant and that he was waiting for a second mining expert to report on his quartz claim. He had got gold specimens already. After resting for about 10 minutes I went back for my things and wheelbarrow. Reached there 5.45 pm and started again at 5.50 pm. And repassed the good man's camp. If he had water I would passed the night there so I had to push on and arrived at Kalgoorlie 8. 10 pm. Camped 100 yards west of the hospital. I was so knocked up, I got a man to go to town for a bag water (one gallon 7d) and a tin of apricots 1 / 6. I let him keep the change 1 / 5 out the 3 / I gave him to buy the water and apricots. I boiled the billy and had supper at 9.00 pm. A tin apricots and cocoa only. The man too had a drink cocoa. He stayed talking to me till 10.00 pm. As soon as he went away I fell on my back asleep.
P.S. The vegetation about the lakes and the sandhills I crossed today are Mulga, Oaks and plenty of Salt and Cotton bushes and lake scrubs. This side of the lakes the timber is mostly Gum trees, Oaks, Quandongs, Sandalwood and other bushes. The man told me that the heat today was a 107 degrees in the shade. It is no wonder that I felt it very much pushing the wheelbarrow and being short of water. It is now lovely moonlight and cool night. The breeze is blowing from south to north. The stranger during his talk he related to me his great sufferings he endured when he went to the Mt. Black Rush. [...]
Kalgoorlie Sunday January 5, 1896 Somewhat I have an urge to go to the White Feather [Kanowna] instead of looking for work on the Kalgoorlie mines and whilst the exemption is on I have decided to visit the I.O.U. and Kurnalpi before I go to the White Feather. So tomorrow I will write down a few items about this great mining field which I have collected during the last few days. [...]