Peter and Sheila Forrest

Historians & Writers

Bush Battleground


Bush Battleground

Barcaldine 1891
Limp Cover Edition
Year of publication: 

In 1891, the new western Queensland town of Barcaldine was at the centre of tumultuous events that changed Australia forever. A six month long shearers' strike tested all the great issues that confronted the land that was soon to become the Australian nation. How was wealth to be shared, how were workplaces to be managed, what were the rights and roles of workers' unions , what sort of place should the new Australia be? These great questions brought people into collision on Queensland's western plains. The effects of what happened are still being felt in modern Australia. This book tells of the 1891 strike, what happened, why the strike was focussed on Barcaldine and how it changed Australia. Along the way, it critically examines the legend that the Australian Labor Party was born under the branches of a gum tree in Barcaldine's main street.