To the Goldfields!

To the Goldfields!

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Sixty thousand people were shouting and singing and laughing and arguing all at once. There were men digging, sluicing and cradling; men panning and puddling in the creek; and men deep down mine shafts. People from all the countries of the world had come to this one place, to look for gold.

I was nine when my family and I set off for the goldfields. Life was completely different there. We lived in a tent, slept on mattresses stuffed with leaves and sometimes ate parrots that Father had shot.

Bert Murrell and I played quoits and marbles, fished for yabbies and made kites. We saw miners hiding from the troopers and heard their drunken arguments at night. I think we saw just about everything that went on at Forest Creek.

To the Goldfields! vividly recreates the details of daily life at the diggings, from family doings to sly grog shops, water shortages and political protests. It is a remarkable evocation of a crucial and colourful period in Australia's history, by the award-winning author of What Was the War Like, Grandma?, Papa and the Olden Days and When I Was a Kid.

Note: Teacher's Resources for this title are available from Wordswork Publications, 18 Corinella Rd, Woodend, Victoria 3442, fax 03 5427 3952.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 32 pages
  • 230 x 250mm
  • Allen & Unwin Children's Books
  • Sydney, Australia
  • 1864484101
  • 9781864484106

About Rachel Tonkin

Rachel Tonkin writes and illustrates historical picture books for children. She drew all over her books at school, and her first job was designing theatre sets and masks for the National Theatre. Her books have been shortlisted for many Australian prizes including the CBC Awards, the Wilderness Society Environment Award and the Multicultural Award for books. Her first book with Allen + Unwin, When I was a Kid, was shortlisted for the New South Wales Premier's History Award 1998.
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