|Part 1 Chapter 1|
inland as Gold Creek or Moggil, as far north as North Pine, and south to the Logan, but my father could also speak to and understand any black from Ipswich, as far north as Mount Perry, or from Frazer, Bribie, Stradbroke, and Moreton Islands. Of all the blackfellows who were boys when he was a boy there is only one survivor; most of them died off prematurely through drink, introduced by the white man.
On first coming, nearly forty-five years ago, to North Pine, which is sixteen miles by road from Brisbane, the country round about was all wild bush, and the land my father took up was a portion of the Whiteside run. The blacks were very good and helpful, lending a hand to spilt and fence and put up stockyards, and they would help look after the cattle and yard them at night. For the young fellow was all alone, no white man would come near him, being in dread of the blacks. Here he was among two hundred of them, and came to no harm.
When with their help he had got a yard made, and a hut erected, he obtained flour, tea, sugar, and tobacco from Brisbane, and leaving these rations in the hut, in charge of an old aboriginal, went again to Brisbane, and was away this time a fortnight. Fifty head of cattle he also left in the charge of two young blacks, trusting them to yard these at night, ect; and to enable the young darkies to do this, he allowed them each the use of a horse and saddle. On his return all was as it should be, not even a bit of tobacco missing! And those who know no better say the aborigines are treacherous and untrustworthy! Father says he could always trust them; and his experience has been that if you treated them kindly they would do anything for you.
On the occasion just mentioned during his absence, a station about nine miles away ran short of rations, and the stockman was sent armed with a carbine and a paid of pistols to see if he could borrow from Father. Arrived at his destination, the man found but blacks, and they simply would give him nothing until the master's return. The hut had no doors at the time, and yet they hunted for their own food, touching nothing. [continue Page 6]