Part 2 out of 4
Heu Mihi! Sermo Meus, Veritas.
My friends had requested me to come forward at the meeting, and here is
my speech according to notes I had previously taken in my tent.
Gold-laced Webster, I challenge contradiction.
I came from old Europe, 16,000 miles across two oceans, and I thought
it a respectable distance from the hated Austrian rule. Why, then,
this monster meeting to-day, at the antipodes? We wrote petitions,
signed memorials, made remonstrances by dozens; no go: we are compelled
to demand, and must prepare for the consequences.
The old style: oppressors and oppressed. A sad reflection, very sad
reflection, for any educated and honest man.
For what did we come into this colony? 'Chi sta bene non si move,'
is an old Roman proverb. If then in old Europe, we had a bird in hand,
what silly fools we were to venture across two oceans, and try to catch
two jackasses in the bush of Australia!
I had a dream, a happy dream, I dreamed that we had met here together
to render thanks unto our Father in heaven for a plentiful harvest,
such that for the first time in this, our adopted land, we had our own food
for the year; and so each of us holding in our hands a tumbler of Victorian
wine, you called on me for a song. My harp was tuned and in good order:
cheerfully struck up,
'Oh, let us be happy together.'
Not so, Britons, not so! We must meet as in old Europe--old style--improved
by far in the south--for the redress of grievances inflicted on us,
not by crowned heads, but blockheads, aristocratical incapables,
who never did a day's work in their life. I hate the oppressor, let him wear
a red, blue, white, or black coat.--And here certainly, I tackled
in right earnest with our silver and gold lace on Ballaarat, and called on all
my fellow-diggers, irrespective of nationality, religion, and colour,
to salute the 'Southern Cross' as the refuge of all the oppressed
from all countries on earth.--The applause was universal, and accordingly
I received my full reward:
Prison and Chains! Old style.
The Reform League, Grappling With The Right 'Stars'.
Monster Meeting continued:--
Proposed and seconded by blather reformers; of course, Vern had his go:--
"That this meeting being convinced that the obnoxious
licence-fee is an imposition and an unjustifiable tax
on free labour, pledges itself to take immediate steps
to abolish the same by at once burning all their licences;
that in the event of any party being arrested for having
no licence, that the united people will, under all
circumstances, defend and protect them."
"That this meeting will not feel bound to protect any
man after the 15th of December who shall not be a member
of the Reform League by that day."
The Rev. Mr. Downing proposed as an amendment, that the licences should not
be burned. Although the rev. gentleman was heard with patience and respect,
a sullen excitement pervaded the whole assemblage while he spoke.
Those even of his most devoted followers were of the opinion that
his sentiments did not accord with the spirit of the times, and the result was
that the rev. gentleman's amendment fell to the ground.
Here must not be forgotten a peculiar colonial habit. There was on the
platform a sly-grog seller, who plied with the black-bottle all the folks
there, and the day was very hot, the sun was almost burning.
Si Cessi Il Pianto, L'Ira Si Gusti.
Lo Schiavo Che Vuol Finir Le Sue Pene,
Vendetta Gridando Al Dio De Giusti,
Deve Schiantar Le Proprie Catene.
Cuore! Si Vada, Vedasi, Si Vinca. (bis.)
In Spite of all that, however, Timothy Hayes, the chairman--who by-the-bye,
discharged the duties of the chair in that vast assemblage, with ability
and tact, spoke like a man, as follows:--
"Gentlemen, many a time I have seen large public meetings pass resolutions
with as much earnestness and unanimity as you show this day; and yet,
when the time came to test the sincerity, and prove the determination
necessary for carrying out those resolutions, it was found then that
'the spirit, indeed, is willing, but the flesh is weak.' Now, then,
before I put this resolution from the chair, let me point out to you
the responsibility it will lay upon you (hear, hear). And so I feel bound
to ask you, gentlemen, to speak out your mind. Should any member of the League
be dragged to the lock-up for not having the licence, will a thousand of you
volunteer to liberate the man?"
"Will two thousand of you come forward?"
"Yes! Yes! Yes!"
"Will four thousand of you volunteer to march up to the Camp, and open
the lock-up to liberate the man?"
"Yes! yes!" (the clamour was really deafening.)
"Are you ready to die?" shouted out our worthy chairman, stretching forth
his right hand, clenched all the while; "Are you ready to die?"
"Yes, Yes! Hurrah!"
This general decided clamour put out Tim in such good spirits, that,
in spite of the heat of the sun and the excitement of the day, he launched
in the realm of crowned poets, and bawled as loud as if he wanted
the head-butler at Toorak to take him a quart-pot of smallbeer--
"On to the field, our doom is sealed,
To conquer or be slaves;
The sun shall see our country free.
Or set upon our graves."
No one who was not present at that monster meeting, or never saw any
Chartist meeting in Copenhagen-fields, London, can possibly form an idea
of the enthusiasm of the miners of Ballaarat on that 29th of November.
A regular volley of revolvers and other pistols now took place, and a good
blazing up of gold-licences. When the original resolutions had
all been passed, Mr. Humffray moved a vote of thanks to Mr. Ireland,
for his free advocacy of the state prisoners. The meeting then dissolved,
many of them having previously burned their licences, and thus virtually
pledging themselves to the resolution adopted, which might be said to have been
the business of the day. Nothing could exceed the order and regularity
with which the people, some fifteen thousand in number, retired.
Ecco Troncato Il Canto Per Ritornare Al Pianto.
My letter to Mr. Archer continued:-
Thanks be to God, the day passed 'unstained,' a glorious day for Victoria
when the SOUTHERN CROSS was first unfolded on Ballaarat; gathering round
itself all the oppressed of the world.
The whole purpose of the meeting was, that a Reform League be formed
and fully organised to carry out the clearance of all our grievances,
on the old style of the Corn Law League in Great Britain.
Next Sunday, we leaguers--( I took out a ticket of membership from Reynolds,
one of the treasurers, and paid my 2s. 6d. on that very day, November 29th,
precisely, on the platform of the meeting)--have a meeting at two o'clock
at the Adelphi to organise the people and appoint a responsible
executive committee. I am the old delegate to it, and therefore I shall
be able to give you, Mr. Archer, a full answer to your letter of the
Mark this, good reader!
1. Meanwhile, privately, as an old Ballaarat hand, I beg respectfully
to convey to you, to employ your influence and reach the ears of
the Lieutenant Governor. The licence-fee, as a tax, is perhaps a cause
of growling like any other tax in Great Britain or elsewhere in the world;
but, on the gold-fields, has become an 'abomination.' The inconvenience
in the Camp-insolence at our getting it, the annoyance and bore
for showing it, when asked by some 'pup' of a trap whilst at our work;
the imbecility and arrogance of so many commissioners and troopers
uselessly employed for the purpose, etc., etc.; make the gold-licence
an abomination to the honest digger. The Vandemonian, you know, never dreamt
of taking out a licence, of course not.
Paramount is this grand consideration: John Bull, rather of a doggish nature,
will growl to himself if left alone picking his bone: the passport system
is a bone that he will not pick; no, no ways and under no shape whatever--
I know it by experience.
2. A memorial to his Excellency for the release of the three prisoners
under sentence for burning the Eureka Hotel, is, through Humffray,
in course of signature. It is our earnest desire that his Excellency
may show mercy; though it may appear, that he would do thus an act of justice
to the diggers, considering how rightly they guessed the Bentley affair.
3. The whole pack, commissioners, troopers and traps on the Ballaarat Camp,
with the exception of magistrate Hackett, are detested by the diggers:
there will be eternal discontent as long as Rede and fraternity are
lodging over that way. The whole Camp had better be changed at once,
and entrusted to good experienced hands and honest men. Perhaps Sir Charles
may turn into a Diogenes in vain--'nil desperandum.' There are now and then
honest men to be found even in this colony.
Good reader, listen to me: I shall tell you no lie: do not lose sight
of the above letter: I intend to give the end in the next chapter:
meanwhile, fill the pipe, let's have a 'blow' together.
Mistero! S'Apre Mendacia, Violente
Strada Maestra In Citta E Campagna:
La Verita, Se Docile, Quadagna
A Passo Lo Stradello Lentamente.
(Translated in the text of my first chapter.)
On Thursday morning, November 30th, at sunrise, I was at my work, as usual.
I assert, as an eye-witness, that most of the hands on the Eureka came
to their work, and worked as usual.
Whilst having a 'blow,' we would talk over again about the monster meeting
of yesterday, thus spinning a yarn in the usual colonial style.
The general impression was, that as soon as government knew in Melbourne
the real state of the excited feelings of the diggers, the licence-hunt
would be put a stop to.
Towards ten o'clock was my hour for a working-man's breakfast.
I used to retire to my tent from the heat of the mid-day, and on that same
Thursday I set about, at once, to end my letter to Mr. Archer,
because I was anxious to forward it immediately to Melbourne.
Good reader, I copy now, word for word, the scrawl then penned,
in great haste and excitement.
Thursday, November 30th, 1854.
Just on my preparing to go and post this letter, we are worried by the usual
Irish cry, to run to Gravel-pits. The traps are out for licences,
and playing hell with the diggers. If that be the case, I am not inclined
to give half-a-crown for the whole fixtures at the Camp.
I must go and see 'what's up.
Always your affectionate,
(Signed) CARBONI RAFFAELLO.
(To) W. H. ARCHER, Esq., Acting Registrar-General, Melbourne.
Why this identical letter of mine--now in the hands of James Macpherson Grant,
M.L.C., Solicitor, Collins-street, where it will remain till Christmas
for inspection, to be then returned to the owner--was not produced
at my STATE TRIAL, was, and is still, a MYSTERY to me!
Let's run to Bakery-hill.
Quos Vult Perdere Deus Dementat.
What's up? a licence hunt; old game. What's to be done? Peter Lalor was
on the stump, his rifle in his hand, calling on volunteers to 'fall in'
into ranks as fast as they rushed to Bakery-hill, from all quarters,
with arms in their hands, just fetched from their tents. Alfred,
George Black's brother, was taking down in a book the names of divisions
in course of formation, and of their captains.
I went up to Lalor, and the moment he saw me, he took me by the hand saying,
"I want you, Signore: tell these gentlemen, (pointing to old acquaintances
of ours, who were foreigners) that, if they cannot provide themselves
with fire-arms, let each of them procure a piece of steel, five or six inches
long, attached to a pole, and that will pierce the tyrants' hearts."
Peter of course spoke thus in his friendly way as usual towards me.
He was in earnest though. The few words of French he knows, he can pronounce
them tolerably well, but Peter is no scholar in modern languages; therefore
he then appointed me his aide-de-camp, or better to say his interpreter,
and now I am proud to be his historian.
Very soon after this, all the diggers 'fell in' in file of two-a-breast,
and marched to the Eureka.
Captain Ross of Toronto, was our standard-bearer. He hoisted down the
Southern Cross from the flag-staff and headed the march.
Patrick Curtain, the chosen captain of the pikemen, gave me his iron pike,
and took my sword to head his division; I 'fell in' with John Manning who also
had a pike, and all of us marched in order to the Eureka.
I assert as an eye-witness, that we were within one thousand in the rank
with all sort of arms, down to the pick and shovel.
We turned by the Catholic church, and went across the gully. Of this I have
perfect recollection: when the 'Southern Cross' reached the road leading to
the Eureka on the opposite hill, the file of two-a-breast crossing the gully,
extended backwards up to the hill where the Catholic church stands.
I took notice of the circumstance at the time.
We reached the hill where was my tent. How little did we know that some
of the best among us had reached the place of their grave! Lalor gave
the proper orders to defend ourselves among the holes in case the hunt
should be attempted in our quarters.
The red-tape was by far too cunning this time; redcoats, traps and troopers
had retired to the Ballaarat Camp, and wanted a 'spell.'
We determined, however, to put an end to their accursed licence-hunting,
mock riot-act chopping, Vandemonian shooting down our mates in Gravel-pits.
Ad Opus Concilium Statutum.
Peter Lalor, at our request, called in all the captains of division,
then present, and the chief persons who had taken part in the movement.
We entered a room some twelve feet square, in Diamond's store. An old
European fox for such occasions, I took the right sort of precautions,
that no spy might creep in among us. Black bottles and tumblers were placed on
the table, as a blind to any intruder; 'et nunc satis, profani vulgus causa,'
we proceeded to business.
1. There was one, whom it is not prudent to mention just now.
2. Near him was a thick, short-necked, burly individual; his phisiog
indicated at once that he was a priest-ridden. I won't trouble myself
about his name.
3. I'll begin with TIMOTHY HAYES. He was born in Ireland, but his outward
appearance is that of a noble fellow--tall, stout, healthy-looking man,
giving himself the airs of a high-born gentleman, fit to rule, direct,
superintend, not to work; that's quite another thing. Of a liberal mind,
however, and, above all, of a kind heart, and that covers a multitude of sins.
4. EDWARD THONEN, a native of Elbertfeld, Prussia, five feet high,
some thirty years old, thin, but robust, of vigorous health, used no razor.
His eyes spoke determination and independence of character. One day
in November, 1853, he called with his lemonade kegs at my hole in
Sailor's Gully. A mate was served with a glass of lemonade--halloo!
he must help at the windlass just at the moment he was tendering payment,
and the shilling fell to the ground. Some words passed to the effect
that six-pence a glass should be enough for lemonade. Thonen asked
for his shilling; my mate directed him where the shilling lay; Thonen
would see him d----d first before picking up his money like a dustman,
and went away. I sent that identical shilling (stamped 1844), along with
my little gold, to Rome; most astonishing! I had the presentiment at the time
that I should have had occasion to relate the story. There was no mate
on the gold-fields to match Thonen at chess-playing. He would turn his head,
allow his opponent the move, and then he would give such a glance
on the chess board, that the right piece would jump to the right place,
as it were of its own accord. Shrewd, yet honest; benevolent, but scorning
the knave; of deep thought, though prompt in action; Thonen possessed the head
belonging to that cast of men whose word is their bond.
5. JOHN MANNING, born in Ireland, and an Irishman to the back-bone,
appeared above forty years of age. His head was bald, perhaps from thinking
three times more than he ought; his forehead showed intelligence, but care
was there with the plough--the plough of dreaming too much of virtue,
believing the knaves are not the majority on earth. He had come young
to this colony, had passed hard days, and so he had got the colonial habit,
now and then, 'Divo jucundo Baccho cultum prestare;' hence his hair was
fast turning grey. He was a self-educated man, but wanted judgment
to discipline his fermenting brain, for the control of his heart,
which was good, honest, always warm, affectionate to man, woman, and child.
When he took his quill he was 'all there,' but soon manifested the sort
of reading of his youth; and experience, however hard, had not yet taught him
the sober reality of the things of the world--that is, he had remained
an Irishman, not John Bullised.
6. Oh! you long-legged VERN! with the eyes of an opossum, a common nose,
healthy-looking cheeks, not very small mouth, no beard, long neck
for Jack Ketch, broad shoulders, never broken down by too much work,
splendid chest, long arms--the whole of your appearance makes you a lion
amongst the fair sex, in spite of your bad English, worse German,
abominable French. They say you come from Hanover, but your friends have seen
too much in you of the Mexico-Peruvian. You belong to the school of the
'Illuminated Cosmopolitans;' you have not a dishonest heart, but you believe
in nothing except the gratification of your silly vanity, or ambition,
as you call it.
7. The next was a skinny bouncing curl who affected the tone and manners
of a Californian; he acted throughout the part of a coward, I scorn to mention
8. Thank God there is among us a man; not so tall as thick, of a strong frame,
some thirty five years old, honest countenance, sober forehead, penetrating
look, fine dark whiskers. His mouth and complexion denote the Irish,
and he is the earnest, well-meaning, no-two-ways, non-John-Bullised Irishman,
PETER LALOR, in whose eyes, the gaseous heroism of demagogues, or the knavery
of peg-shifters is an abomination, because his height of impudence consisted
in giving the diggers his hand, and leaving with them his arm in pawn,
for to jump the Ballaarat claim in St. Patrick's Hall. More power to you
Peter! Old chummy, smother the knaves! they breed too fast in this colony.
9. Myself, CARBONI RAFFAELLO, DA ROMA; Member of the College of Preceptors
(1850), Bloomsbury-square, professor, interpreter and translator of
the Italian, French, Spanish and German Language into English or vice versa
late of 4, Castle-court, Birchin-lane, Cornhill, London; now, gold-digger
of Ballaarat, was present.
10. PATRICK CURTAIN, an old digger, well known among us; at the time
a storekeeper; husband and father of a beloved family. His caste is that
of the Irishman-Johnbull; tall, robust, some forty years old; he is no friend
to much yabber-yabber; of deep thinking, though very few can guess what
he is thinking of. He smiles but never laughs to his heart's content.
Curtain was captain, and subsequently lieutenant of the pikemen division,
when they chose HANRAHAN for their captain. Said pikemen division was among
the first that took up arms on Thursday, November 30th, immediately after
the licence-hunt. It was formed on Bakery-hill, and received Lalor
on the stump with acclamation. It increased hourly and permanently;
was the strongest division in the Eureka stockade; in comparison to others,
it stood the most true to the 'Southern Cross,' and consequently suffered
the greatest loss on the morning of the massacre. Now, to explain how both
its gallant leaders escaped unhurt, safe as the Bank, so that a few weeks
afterwards, both were working happy and jolly in broad day-light
on Gravel-pits, within a rifle shot from the Camp, that would be a job
of a quite different kind just at present: sufficient the trouble to mention;
that when I came out of gaol, I met them both in a remunerative hole
in Gravel-pits, as aforesaid.
11. 12. There were two other individuals of the John-bull caste,
perhaps cross-breed, who had taken up arms in the cause of the diggers,
because their sly-trade was flagging; but, as a rotten case abides no handling,
I will let them pass.
Manning, handed over to Lalor the motion drawn up in my tent. Here it is:-
Proposed by John Manning,
Seconded by Carboni Raffaello,
I. That Peter Lalor has acted worthy of the miners of Ballaarat,
in organizing the armed men on Bakeryhill, against the wanton aggression
from the Camp this morning.
II. That he be desired to call in all captains of division now present
on the spot, as well as other persons of importance, well-known good-wishers
to the cause of the diggers.
III. That said parties constitute the council-of-war for the defence.
IV. Lalor to be the president pro. tem.
V. That he proceed at once to the election of the Commander-in-Chief,
by the majority of votes.
Lalor tore up immediately the slip of paper containing the above motion,
because he did not think it prudent to leave written things about in a
public store. I transcribe it from the scrap left among the papers in my tent.
Quousque Tandem Abutere, Toorak, Patientia Nostra?
Lalor rose, and said:
"Gentlemen, I find myself in the responsible position I now occupy,
for this reason. The diggers, outraged at the unaccountable conduct
of the Camp officials in such a wicked licence-hunt at the point
of the bayonet, as the one of this morning, took it as an insult
to their manhood, and a challenge to the determination come to at
the monster meeting of yesterday. The diggers rushed to their tents for arms,
and crowded on Bakery-hill. They wanted a leader. No one came forward,
and confusion was the consequence. I mounted the stump, where you saw me,
and called on the people to 'fall in' into divisions, according to
the fire-arms they had got, and to chose their own captains out of the best men
they had among themselves. My call was answered with unanimous acclamation,
and complied to with willing obedience. The result, is, that I have been
able to bring about that order, without which it would be folly to face
the pending struggle like men. I make no pretensions to military knowledge.
I have not the presumption to assume the chief command, no more than any other
man who means well in the cause of the diggers. I shall be glad to see
the best among us take the lead. In fact, gentlemen, I expected some one
who is really well known (J. B. Humffray?) to come forward and direct
our movement! However, if you appoint me your commander-in-chief, I shall not
shrink; I mean to do my duty as a man. I tell you, gentlemen, if once I pledge
my hand to the diggers, I will neither defile it with treachery, nor render it
contemptible by cowardice."
Brave Peter, you gave us your hand on the Eureka, and left there your arm:
an incontestable evidence of Lalor's Pledge.
Manning then proposed Raffaello, and pointed at his scars as an evidence
of his tiger-pluck against the hated Austrian rule, which was now attempted,
in defiance of God and man, to be transplanted into this colony.
I declined, because, during the past winter, I had over-tasked my physical
strength, and did not possess that vigour essential to such an emergency.
Confidence is the bond necessary between the soldier and his officer.
It was my decided opinion, however much a foreigner may be respected
on the gold-fields, that the right man should be taken from among Britons.
Vern here began a portentous lecture on military science, military discipline,
military tactics, and other sorts of militaryism, but his English was
so wretched, his ideas so sky-blathering, his martial ardour so knocking down,
that no one could make anything out of his blabberdom.
Of this I have perfect recollection. He was boasting eternally of his German
rifle-brigade! 500 strong. That he had this brigade he urgently asserted;
but where it was, that's the rub!
No possible inquiry from Lalor could get at the bottom of Vern's prodigal
brigade. Is, then, the grand secret buried within Vern's splendid chest?
No; I mean to reveal it at four o'clock, Saturday, December 2nd.
Carboni Raffaello, who had heard heaps of cant in old Europe, did count
for nothing the oceanic military knowledge of Vern, in spite of his big
trail-sword, that made more jingling than enough.
I commended, in high terms, the conduct of Lalor during the morning,
and it was my impression that he possessed the confidence of the diggers
and should be their Commander-in-chief.
Thonen seconded the motion. The first 'unnamed,' shewed approbation,
and the appointment was carried by a majority of eleven to one.
Peter Lalor thanked the council for the honour conferred on him,
assured the members that he was determined to prepare the diggers
to resist force by force.
It was perfectly understood, and openly declared, in this first council-of-war,
that we meant to organise for defence, and that we had taken up arms
for no other purpose.
The council adjourned to five o'clock in the evening.
Lalor Stump, Bakery-Hill.
Was found 'all there,'
With dauntless dare,
His men inspiring;
To wolf or bear,
He made us swear,
Be faithful to the Standard, )
For Victory or Death! ) (bis)
On that Thursday, November 30th, more memorable than the disgraced Sunday,
December 3rd, the SUN was on its way towards the west: in vain some scattered
clouds would hamper its splendour--the god in the firmament generously
ornamented them with golden fringes, and thus patches of blue sky far off
were allowed to the sight, through the gilded openings among the clouds.
The 'SOUTHERN CROSS' was hoisted up the flagstaff--a very splendid pole,
eighty feet in length, and straight as an arrow. This maiden appearance
of our standard, in the midst of armed men, sturdy, self-overworking
gold-diggers of all languages and colours, was a fascinating object to behold.
There is no flag in old Europe half so beautiful as the 'Southern Cross'
of the Ballaarat miners, first hoisted on the old spot, Bakery-hill.
The flag is silk, blue ground, with a large silver cross, similar to the one
in our southern firmament; no device or arms, but all exceedingly chaste
Captain Ross, of Toronto, was the bridegroom of our flag, and sword in hand,
he had posted himself at the foot of the flag-staff, surrounded by
his rifle division.
Peter Lalor, our Commander-in-chief, was on the stump, holding with his
left hand the muzzle of his rifle, whose butt-end rested on his foot.
A gesture of his right hand, signified what he meant when he said,
"It is my duty now to swear you in, and to take with you the oath
to be faithful to the Southern Cross. Hear me with attention. The man who,
after this solemn oath does not stand by our standard, is a coward in heart.
"I order all persons who do not intend to take the oath,
to leave the meeting at once.
"Let all divisions under arms 'fall in' in their order
round the flag-staff."
The movement was made accordingly. Some five hundred armed diggers advanced
in real sober earnestness, the captains of each division making the military
salute to Lalor, who now knelt down, the head uncovered, and with the
right hand pointing to the standard exclaimed a firm measured tone:
"WE SWEAR BY THE SOUTHERN CROSS TO STAND TRULY BY EACH OTHER,
AND FIGHT TO DEFEND OUR RIGHTS AND LIBERTIES."
An universal well rounded AMEN, was the determined reply; some five hundred
right hands stretched towards our flag.
The earnestness of so many faces of all kinds of shape and colour;
the motley heads of all sorts of size and hair; the shagginess of so many
beards of all lengths and thicknesses; the vividness of double the number
of eyes electrified by the magnetism of the southern cross; was one of those
grand sights, such as are recorded only in the history of
'the Crusaders in Palestine.'
Un Bon Calcio, E La Canaglia,
Stronga Va Come La Paglia.
The drill afterwards was gone through with eagerness.
Another scene, though of a different kind all together, was going on
at a corner of the above picture.
Judas Iscariot, 'Goodenough,' was among us, in the garb of a fossiker;
he appeared to me, then, to be under the influence of drink;
so Vandemonian-like were his shouts about standing up and fighting for rights
and liberties; and burning down the camp in a blaze like the late Eureka Hotel.
Mind good reader, I tell you no joke, I am not in humour just now to spin
a yarn.--I wished to shame the fellow for his villainy on such a solemn
occasion. The fellow persisted in his drunken shouts. I lost my temper,
and gave the scoundrel such a respectable kick, in a less respectable region,
with a most respectable boot of mine, that it served me right when both
my new watertight boots were robbed from my shins by Goodenough's satellites
on the subsequent Sunday, at the Ballaarat Camp.
The Thursday's sun is setting: we returned to the Eureka. I had to attend
the 'Council for the Defence.'
Disciplina, Suprema Lex In Bello.
In the afternoon, our camp on the Eureka was enclosed in by slabs,
near-handy thrown down at random. All diggers who had been able to procure
fire-arms kept coming in, in right earnest, and formed new divisions.
The pikemen grew stronger and stronger. Drilling was tolerably progressing.
We were of all nations and colours. Lalor gave me his consent and order
to direct all foreigners in their respective language, however little
they knew of the English, to fall in in divisions according to the arms
they had got; and here I solemnly declare, to whomsoever it may concern,
that up to four o'clock of Saturday there was not one single division
distinguished by nationality or religion.
The armed men numbered now (six o'clock) about five hundred.
Vern's gall was fermenting, but on PETER LALOR being proclaimed
Commander-in-chief, the appointment was ratified by hurrah! from the diggers.
There was such a decided intention to do 'something' with the strong arm,
and at once, that I was called on the stump. I requested the diggers
to give us time for deliberation, and pledged my word that I would inform them
of the result. 'Go a-head! Great works!' was the shout.
Beati Qui Sunt Pacifici, Quoniam Filii Dei Vocabuntur.
It was dark: myself took the light in the council room.
Father P. Smyth and Mr. George Black were present; both looking serious
All of us were much concerned, and felt the responsibility of our position.
By this time the diggers from all parts had swelled to the number of
eight hundred. They were not clamorous, they wanted to know what
was determined on by the leaders.
Proposed by Black, seconded by Manning...That a deputation from
the armed diggers, should be forthwith sent to the Camp--
1. To demand--that was our temper in those days--the immediate release
of those diggers who had been dragged to the lock-up in the morning hunt,
for want of the licence.
2. To demand from Commissioner Rede a pledge not to come out any more
Two of us were to form the deputation, and proceed at once.
Father Smyth proposed Mr. Black, Lalor proposed Signor Raffaello:
agreed to unanimously. This news, being made public to the diggers,
was well received by all; and the council kept sitting until our return.
The deputation was accompanied by Father Smyth. It was a starry night,
and rather cold; the moon shone in all its southern splendour.
On approaching the main road, the noisy band of Row's Circus, and the colonial
cursing and shouting from inveterate grog-bibbers, forced into my mind
the meditation, 'Unde bella et pugna infer vos?' etc.--James, chap. iv.
We met here and there several groups, who were anxiously discussing the events
of the day, and the probable consequences. Mr. Black kindly and plainly
informed them of our mission. On reaching the bridge, we found it guarded
by the police. Father Smyth had an easy pass, and went by himself to speak
first at head-quarters, for the safety of our persons.
The Eureka Stockade.
The Consequence Of Some Pirates Wanting On Quarter-Deck A Rebellion.
At last the deputation was before King Rede, whose shadow by moonshine,
as he held his arm a la Napoleon, actually inspired me with reverence;
but behold! only a marionette was before us. Each of his words,
each of his movements, was the vibration of the telegraphic wires directed
from Toorak. He had not a wicked heart; some knew him for his benevolence,
and he helped many an honest digger out of trouble. Once I had seen him
with my mate, Paul Brentani, about manufacturing bricks from the splendid clay
of Gravel-pits. Mr. Rede received us as a gentleman, and, by way of
encouragement, said to Paul, 'Je veux bien vous aider, car tout est encore
a batir a Ballaarat, et il nous faut des briques--revenez me voir.'
And yet, on the gold-field, this man was feared by the few who could not
help it, respected by the many--detested by all, because he was the
Resident Commissioner--that is, all the iniquities of officialdom at the time
were indiscriminately visited on his gold-lace cap, which fact so infatuated
his otherwise not ordinary brains, that they protruded through his eyes,
whenever he was sure he had to perform a dooty. I would willingly
turn burglar to get hold of the whole of the correspondence between him
and Toorak. I feel satisfied I would therein unravel the mystery
of the Eureka massacre.
Rede, after all, was neither the right man, nor in the right place,
for Sir Charles Hotham.
Sub-inspector Taylor, with his silver-lace cap, blue frock, and jingling sword,
so precise in his movement, so Frenchman-like in his manners,
such a puss-in-boots, after introducing the deputation, placed himself
at the right of the Commissioner, and never spoke; though, on accompanying us
from the bridge, having recognised me, he said, "We have been always
on good terms with the diggers, and I hope we may keep friends still;"--
and gave me a smile of sincerity. He, perhaps, was ignorant, as well as
the deputation, that, on quarter-deck, some pirates wanted a rebellion.
At the left of Mr. Rede, there was a gentleman who inspired us with confidence.
His amiable countenance is of the cast that commands respect, not fear.
The ugliness of his eyes prejudices you against him at first; let him,
however, turn them upon you in his own benevolent way, you are sure
they mean no harm: within a pair of splendid whiskers, of the finest blond,
there is such a genteel nose and mouth, such a fine semi-serious forehead,
that the whole is the expression of his good sound heart, that loves truth,
even from devils. It was Charles Henry Hackett, police magistrate.
The place of our palaver was exactly one yard down hill, near the old gum tree,
in front of the present Local Court.
Mr. Rede asked our names, and cautioned us that our message would be reported
at head-quarters. He who had a gang of the vilest spies at his bidding,
perhaps, indeed, forced upon him, now suspected us as such, and told us
pretty plainly, that he thought it not prudent to take us to his residence,
the camp being prepared against a supposed attack from the diggers.
Mr. Black began, in plain and straightforward language, to make
a truthful statement of the exasperated feelings of the diggers, courageously
censuring the conduct of the Commissioner in his licence-hunt of the morning,
reminding him of the determination with which the diggers had passed
the resolutions at the monster meeting of yesterday. "To say the least,
it was very imprudent of you, Mr. Rede, to challenge the diggers at the point
of the bayonet. Englishmen will not put up with your shooting down
any of our mates, because he has not got a licence."
Mr. Rede: "Now Mr. Black, how can you say that I ever gave such an order
as to shoot down any digger for his not having a licence?" and he proceeded
to give his version of the occurrence. Master Johnson wanted a little play,
and rode licence-hunting; was met with impertinent shouts of "Joe, Joe,"
and reported a riot. Daddy Rede must share in the favourite game,
and rode to crack the riot act. The red-coats turned out. The diggers
mobbed together among the holes, and several shots were fired at the traps.
The conclusion: Three of the ring-leaders of the mob had been pounced upon,
and were safe in chokey.
Mr. Black manfully vindicated the diggers, by observing how they had been
insulted; that Britons hated to be bullied by the soldiery, and concluded
by stating our first 'demand.'
Mr. Rede, startled at our presumption, breathed out "Demand!--First of all,
I object to the word, because, myself, I am only responsible to government,
and must obey them only: and secondly, were those men taken prisoners
because they had not licences? Not at all. This is the way in which
the honest among the diggers are misled. Any bad character gets up
a false report: t soon finds it way in certain newspapers, and the
Camp officials are held up as the cause of all the mischief."
Mr. Black would not swallow such a perfidious insinuation.
Mr. Rede continued: "Now, Mr. Black, look at the case how it really stands.
Those men are charged with rioting; they will be brought before the magistrate,
and it is out of my power to interfere with the course of justice."
Mr. Hackett spoke his approbation to the Commissioner.
Mr. Black: "Will you accept bail for them to any amount you please
A consultation ensued between Rede and Hackett. Bail would be accepted
for two of the prisoners. Father Smyth would bring the required sureties
Mr. Black proceeded to our second demand.
Mr. Rede took that for a full stop; and launched into declamation:
"What do you think, gentlemen, Sir Charles Hotham would say to me,
if I were to give such a pledge? Why Sir Charles Hotham would have at once
to appoint another Resident Commissioner in my place!" and concluded
with the eternal cant of all silver and gold lace, "I have a dooty to perform,
I know my duty, I must 'nolens volens' adhere to it."
In vain Mr. Black entered the pathetic; and expostulated with the Commissioner,
who had it in his power to prevent bloodshed.
Mr. Rede: "It is all nonsense to make me believe that the present agitation
is intended solely to abolish the licence. Do you really wish
to make me believe that the diggers of Ballaarat won't pay any longer
two pounds for three months? The licence is a mere cloak to cover
a democratic revolution."
Mr. Black acknowledged that the licence fee, and especially the disreputable
mode of collecting it at the point of the bayonet, were not the only grievances
the diggers complained of. They wanted to be represented in the
Legislative Council; they wanted to 'unlock the lands.'
Carboni Raffaello, who had yet not opened his mouth, said: "Mr. Rede,
I beg you would allow me to state, that the immediate object of the diggers
taking up arms, was to resist any further licence-hunting. I speak
for the foreign diggers whom I here represent. We object to the Austrian rule
under the British flag. If you would pledge yourself not to come out
any more for the licence, until you have communicated with Son Excellence,
I would give you my pledge...--(I meant to say, that I was willing
to pledge myself, and try if possible to assuage the excitement,
and wait till 'our Charley' had sent up a decided answer...")--but I was
instantly interrupted by Father Smyth who addressed me imperatively:
"Give no pledge: sir, you have no power to do so."
This interruption, which I perfectly recollect, and the circumstance that
on our going and returning, the said Father Smyth continually kept on a 'sotto
voce' conversation with Mr. Black only, were, and are still, mysteries to me.
Mr. Rede, who had not failed to remark the abruptness with which
Father Smyth had cut me short; joined both his hands, and with the stretched
forefinger tapping me on both hands, which were clenched as in prayer,
addressed to me these identical remarkable words, "My dear fellow,
the licence is a mere watchword of the day, and they make a cat's-paw of you."
Mr. Black undertook my defence: the words above stuck in my throat, though.
Mr. Hackett, on being consulted, assented that Mr. Rede could promise us
to take into consideration the present excited feelings of the diggers,
and use his best judgment as to a further search for licences on the morrow.
Mr. Rede: "Yes, yes; but, understand me, gentlemen. I give no pledge."
The usual ceremonies being over, Sub-inspector Taylor kindly escorted us
to the bridge, gave the pass-word, and to go--just as any one else will go
in this land, who puts his confidence in red-tape--disappointed.
La Volpe Cambia Il Pelo, Ma Non La Pelle;
Cambia La Pelle Il Serpe, Non Il Veleno:
Il Cane Non Abbaia Col Ventre Pieno;
Vestesi Il Lupo In Pecora Tra Liagnelle.
Ma Senza Gloria.
By this time, the main road was crowded. The men were anxiously waiting
to know our success. Mr. Black calmed their excitement as kindly
as circumstances admitted. We returned to our camp at the Eureka. Mr. Black
rendered an account of our mission with that candour which characterises him
as a gentleman. I wished to correct him in one point only, and said,
my impression was, that the Camp, choked with red-coats, would quash
Mr. Rede's 'good judgment,' get the better of his sense, if he had any
of either, and that he would come out licence-hunting on an improved style.
Peter Lalor adjourned the meeting to five o'clock in the morning.
Accingere Gladio Tuo Super Femur Tuum.
On Friday, December 1st, the sun rose as usual. The diggers came in armed,
voluntarily, and from all directions: and soon they were under drill,
as the day before. So far as I know, not one digger had turned to work.
It may have happened, that certain Cornishmen, well known for their
peculiar propensity, of which they make a boast to themselves, to pounce
within an inch of their neighbour's shaft, were not allowed to indulge in
'encroaching.' This, however, I assert as a matter of fact, that the Council
of the Eureka Stockade never gave or hinted at any order to stop the
usual work on the gold-field.
Towards ten o'clock, news reached our camp that the red coats were under arms,
and there would be another licence-hunting.
The flames did not devour the Eureka Hotel with the same impetuosity
as we got up our stockade. Peter Lalor gave the order: Vern had the charge,
and was all there with his tremendous sword. "Wo ist der Raffaello!
Du, Baricaden bauen," and all heaps of slabs, all available timber
was soon higgledy-piggledy thrown all round our camp. Lalor then gave
directions as to the position each division should take round the holes,
and soon all was on the 'qui vive.'
Had Commissioner Rede dared to rehearse the farce of the riot-act
cracking as on Gravel-pits, he would have met with a warm reception
from the Eureka boys. It was all the go that morning.
No blue or red coat appeared.--It was past one o'clock: John Bull
must have his dinner. Lalor spoke of the want of arms and ammunition,
requested that every one should endeavour to procure of both as much
as possible, but did certainly not counsel or even hint that stores
should be pressed for it.
A German blacksmith, within the stockade was blazing, hammering and pointing
pikes as fast as his thick strong arms allowed him: praising the while
his past valour in the wars of Mexico, and swearing that his pikes would fix
red-toads and blue pissants especially. He was making money as fast
any Yankee is apt on such occasions, and it was a wonder to look at
his coarse workmanship, that would hardly stick an opossum, though his pikes
were meant for kangaroos and wild dogs.
Populus Ex Terra Crescit: Multitudo Hominum Est Populus;
Ergo, Multitudo Hominum Ex Terra Crescit.
Between four and five o'clock of same afternoon, we became aware of
the silly blunder, which proved fatal to our cause. Some three or four hundred
diggers arrived from Creswick-creek, a gold-field famous for its pennyweight
fortunes--grubbed up through hard work, and squandered in dissipation
among the swarm of sly-grog sellers in the district.
We learned from this Creswick legion that two demagogues had been stumping
at Creswick, and called the diggers there to arms to help their brothers
on Ballaarat, who were worried by scores, by the perfidious hounds of the Camp.
They were assured that on Ballaarat there was plenty of arms, ammunitions,
forage, and provisions, and that preparations on a grand scale were making
to redress once for all the whole string of grievances. They had only
to march to Ballaarat, and would find there plenty of work, honour, and glory.
I wonder how honest Mr. Black could sanction with his presence,
such suicidal rant, such absurd bosh of that pair of demagogues,
who hurried down these four hundred diggers from Creswick, helpless, grog-worn,
that is, more or less dirty and ragged, and proved the greatest nuisance.
One of them, MICHAEL TUEHY, behaved valiantly and so I shall say no more.
Of course something must be done. Thonen was the purveyor. The Eureka butcher
on the hill gave plenty of meat, and plenty of bread was got from all
the neighbouring stores, and paid for. A large fire was lit in the middle
of the stockade, and thus some were made as comfortable as circumstances
admitted; others were quartered at the tents of friends; the greater part,
soon guessing how they had been humbugged, returned to their old quarters.
Arms and ammunition were our want. Men were there enough; each and all ready
to fight: such was the present excitement; but blue and red coats cannot
be driven off with fists alone. Lalor gave all his attention to the subject,
but would not consent yet to press stores for it.
Vern was perpetually expecting every moment his German Rifle Brigade.
Have patience till to-morrow.
In the evening a report was made to the Council, that a reinforcement
of soldiers from Melbourne was on the road. Captains Ross and Nealson
hastened with their divisions across the bush to intercept the expected troops,
so as to get at their arms and ammunition. All proved in vain.
When a revolution explodes as conspired and planned by able leaders,
it is usually seen that it was their care from the very beginning,
that arms and ammunition should be at hand when and wherever required;
while usury, ambition, or vengeance lavishly provide the money to render
the revolution popular: but we had never dreamed of making any preparation,
because we diggers had taken up arms solely in self-defence; and as up to
Saturday the Council of the Eureka Stockade counted in the majority honest men,
themselves hard-working diggers, they would not turn burglars
or permit anybody to do so in their name.
Truly, I heard from Manning, that a certain committee kept on their
hallucinated yabber-yabber at the Star Hotel. I never was there,
and know nothing about Star blabs. They, with the exception of Vern,
were not with us, thank God; up to Saturday four o'clock any how.
Saturday morning. The night had been very cold, we had kept watch for fear
of being surprised; every hour the cry, was "The military are coming."
Vern had enlarged the stockade across the Melbourne road,
and down the Warrenheip Gully.
Suppose, even that all diggers who had fire arms had been present and plucky,
yet no man in his right senses will ever give Vern the credit
for military tactics, if that gallant officer had thought that an acre
of ground on the surface of a hill accessible with the greatest ease
on every side, simply fenced in by a few slabs placed at random,
could be defended by a handful of men, for the most part totally destitute
of military knowledge, against a disciplined soldiery, backed by swarms
of traps and troopers.
Such, however, was our infatuation, that now we considered the stockade
stronger, because it looked more higgledy-piggledy.
Non Nobis, Non Nobis, Sed Pax Vobiscum.
It was eight o'clock. Drilling was going on as on the previous day.
Father Smyth came inside the stockade: it was my watch. He looked
very earnest, a deep anxiety about the hopelessness of our struggle,
must have grieved his Irish heart. He obtained permission from Lalor
to speak to those under arms, who belonged to his Congregation.
Vern consented, and Manning announced it to the men. Father Smyth told them,
that the government Camp was under arms, some seven or eight hundred strong;
that he had received positive information, that government had sent
other reinforcements from Melbourne, which would soon reach Ballaarat;
warned them against useless bloodshed; reminded them that they were Christians;
and expressed his earnest desire to see all of them at Mass
on the following (Sunday) morning.
Father Smyth, your advice was kindly received; if it did not thrive,
was it because you sowed it on barren ground?
The following document may in time help to bring forth truth to light:-
Colonial Secretary's Office,
Melbourne, lst December, 1854.
In acknowledging the receipt of your letter of
yesterday's date, I am desired by his Excellency
to thank you for the earnest efforts which, in your
professional calling, you are making to allay the
disturbances. Unless the government enforce the
laws which may be in operation, disorder and
licentiousness must prevail.
You know a commission is issued for the purpose
of inquiring into the state and condition of the
digging population: until they make their report,
the laws his Excellency found in force must be
I have the honour to be, Rev. Sir,
Your most obedient servant,
J. MOORE, A.C.S.
The Rev. Patrick Smyth,
Catholic Priest, Ballaarat.
The Things We Ardently Wish For In This Life, Either Never Come To Pass,
Or If They Do It Is Too Late. Hence, 'Better Late Than Never.'
The whole of the morning passed off as quietly as any well wisher to our cause
could desire. Towards twelve o'clock it was our decision that licence-hunting
was over, for the day any how, since no digger recollected a search for licence
taking place on a Saturday afternoon. Our talk was of the coming meeting
of the reform league at two o'clock on Sunday, at the Adelphi, as announced
at the monster meeting on Wednesday.
The impression was almost general, that 'Charley' would soon dismiss
the hated brood of our commissioners, and things would then be 'all right.'
'Off to get a bite,' was the pass-word.
I assert as a matter of fact, and a living eye-witness, that between
one and two o'clock on Saturday, December 2nd, 1854, the Eureka stockade
was comparatively deserted. Those who remained (some one hundred) were such,
as either had a long distance to go to reach their tents, and the day
was very hot, or such as had no tent or friend on Ballaarat. I took notice
of this very circumstance from my tent, the second from the stockade,
on the hill, west, whilst frying a bit of steak on the fire of my tent chimney,
facing said stockade: Manning was peeling an onion. I transcribe the above
from the identical note I had taken down on my diary, at the identical hour
aforesaid, and can afford to challenge contradiction.
Taedet Animam Meam Vitae Meae.
The news of our private, though never acknowledged, disbandment
must soon have reached the Camp.
THE LORD GOD OF ISRAEL UNRAVEL THE MYSTERY.
What a nonsense of mine to endeavour to swell up the Eureka stockade
to the level of a Sebastopol!!
Good reader, I have to relate the story of a shocking murder, a disgrace
to the Christian name.
I am a Catholic, and believe in the life everlasting. On the day of judgment
it will go milder with the Emperor Nicholas, than with the man
whoever he may be, that prompted and counted on the Eureka massacre
on the Sunday morning, December 3rd, 1854.
At four o'clock, the diggers crowded again towards the stockade.
The divisions of Ross and Nealson had returned from their excursions
and were under arms. The scene became soon animated, and the usual drilling
was pushed on with more ardour than ever.
John Basson Humffray, of whom nothing was seen or heard since the previous
Wednesday, now introduced, through a letter in his own handwriting;
addressed 'To the Commander-in-Chief of the armed diggers, Eureka,'
a Doctor Kenworthy, as surgeon, because he (Humffray) feared that a collision
between the diggers and the military would soon take place.
Peters, the spy, was at the same time within the stockade.
The 'surgeon' had his Yankee face under a bell-top (French hat): he entered
into conversation with me in person. I had my sword in hand, and was on watch.
We began to talk about MAZZINI and Captain FORBES: this latter,
a brave American officer, fought in the late struggle at Rome (1848).
I perfectly recollect, that, pointing with a smile to our barricade,
I told this Kenworthy, we had thrown them up for our defence against
licence-hunting. There is a living witness to the above circumstance,
a countryman of mine, whose name I do not remember just now, but he wore
at the time a red shirt, with picks and shovels all over it.
Previous to this, Vern, whose silly vanity would by no means allow him
to put up with his not having been elected Commander-in-Chief, all on a sudden
cried out in his sort of bombast, "Here they are coming, boys: now I will
lead you to death or victory!"--actually a band of men was tramping
full speed towards the stockade.
Narravere Patres Nostri
Et Nos Narravimus Omnes.
Was it then the long, long-looked for German Rifle Brigade? Here is
it's four-horned name--I copy from a slip of paper I wrote in pencil
on that very Saturday, as the name was too long and difficult for me
to remember--'The Independent Californian Rangers' Revolver Brigade.'
I should say they numbered a couple of hundred, looking Californian enough,
armed with a Colt's revolver of large size, and many had a Mexican knife
at the hip.
Here is the very circumstance when M`Gill made his appearance for the first
time within the stockade; I recollect perfectly well the circumstance
when a Mr. Smith, of the American Adams's Express, was holding the bridle
of the horse, from which said M`Gill dismounted.
James M`Gill is of the breed on the other side of the Pacific. He is thought
to have been educated in a military academy, and certainly, he has the manners
of a young gentleman of our days. He is rather short, not so much
healthy-looking as wide awake. 'What's up?' is his motto. This colony
will sober him down, and then he will attend more to 'what's to be done.'
His complexion bears the stamp of one born of a good family, but you can read
in the white of his eyes, in the colouring of his cheeks, in the paleness
of his lips, that his heart is for violence. When he gets a pair
of solid whiskers, he may pass for a Scotchman, for he has already a nose
as if moulded in Scotland. He speaks the English language correctly,
and when not prompted by the audacity of his heart, shows good sense,
delicate feelings, a pleasing way of conversation. His honour was impeached
by Vern, who never came up to the scratch, though; witness, Mr. John Campbell,
of 'The Age' office.
When a man is dead, there and then he is himself the horrible evidence
of corruption; but, as long as he lives there is hopes for fair play,
and hear his evidence on the resurrection of life: hence the moral courage
to assert the truth, shuts out the physical strength for blather to shampoo
the lie; and an honest upright man of education and a Christian leaves
'duelering' to fools.
M`Gill is not wicked in heart, though he may not yet have settled-principles.
If this world be such a puzzle even for grey-heads, who have seen enough of it,
what then must it be for one, come out of College and learning life
on the gold-fields? Hence, if I say that he helped with others to draw
the chestnuts out of the Eureka Stockade, for some old Fox, I cannot
offend him.--Who was the accursed old Fox? Patience, there is a God.--
When I was in gaol, I was not vexed at hearing him at liberty and happy:
I could not possibly wish my misery to any one; but his boast on Ballaarat
that his friend Dr. Kenworthy had procured him a 'written free pardon'
did smother me with bitterness.
Tota Domus Duo Sunt, Iidem Parentque Jubentque!
A confusion ensued which baffles description; marching, counter-marching,
orders given by everybody, attended to by nobody. This blustering concern,
when brought forward on the stage at the State Trials, appeared so much
to the heart's content of his Honour, of his and my learned friend Mr. Ireland,
that I must offer it here, 'nolens volens', for the confirmation of the
Thomas Allen examined.--(See Report of the Nigger-Rebel State Trial,
in 'The Age', February 24th, 1855.)
"This witness was so very deaf that the Attorney-General
had actually to bawl out (oh! pity the lungs!) the
questions necessary to his examination. He stated,
he kept the Waterloo coffee-house and store at the
Eureka. He had just returned from Melbourne on the
Saturday, December 2nd. He heard inside the stockade
the word to 'fall in' for drill. Saw them go through
several military evolutions. They did not exactly go
through them in a military manner, but in the way in
which what call an 'awkward squad' might do.--
(I believe you, Old Waterloo; go a-head). He had been
at the battle of Waterloo, and knew what military
evolutions were. Saw one squad with pikes and another
with rifles. He heard one of them say, 'Shoulder poles,'
then he said, 'Order poles,' 'Ground arms,'
'Stand at ease,' 'Pick up poles,' 'Shoulder arms,'
'Right face,' 'Quick march,' 'Right counter march,'
and they were then marched for more than two hours.
After that he saw them 'fall in three deep,' and were
then told (by Captain Hanrahan) to prepare to
'receive cavalry,' and 'charge cavalry'--Poke your pike
into the guts of the horse, and draw it out from under
" After that, in the evening, he saw the man who was in
command again form his men around him, and he seemed to
be reading a general order for the night. After it got
night, one of them came up to him and said, 'Now,
Old Waterloo, you must come and join us,' and he threw
down a pike which he told him to take. He said, 'No;
it is such a d----d ugly one, I'll have nothing to do
with it.' Another came, and witness asked what bounty
he gave, saying 50 pounds was little enough for an old
Waterloo man. Because he would not join them he was
taken into custody by them, and was guarded by three
men with pikes at his door. (Great works!) All this
was on Saturday. His tent was the second inside the
stockade. His tent and all his property was destroyed
by fire, it all amounted to 200 pounds. He believed it
was set fire to by the police." (And so it was, old
Waterloo-no-bolter, good-hearted old man as ever lived
in the world. If you wish call for a copy of this
This day, Saturday, November 10th, 1855. A glorious day for Ballaarat:
Peter Lalor, our late Commander-in-Chief, being elected by unanimous
acclamation, Member of the Legislative Council for this 'El Dorado.'
I spoke at the Camp face to face with James M`Gill. We shook hands
with mutual respect and friendship.
M`Gill, at my request, looked full in my eyes, and assured me, that the order
old Waterloo speaks of, was to the effect of appointing officers for watch
at the stockade, for 'out-posts' to keep a sharp look-out, for march to
intercept reinforcements; in short, an order for military discipline,
very necessary under the prevailing excitement. Said order for the night
(Saturday, December 2nd) was drawn up by his command, and written black
on white by Alfred, the brother of George Black.
M`Gill further stated that the supposed 'Declaration of Independence,'
on the model of the American one, is a gratuitous falsehood, which must have
originated from some well-disposed for, or well-affected to, Toorak small-beer.
James M`Gill hereby directs me to challenge the production of the document
in question, either the original or copy of it, of course with satisfactory
evidence of its being a genuine article.
I express the hope that H. R. Nicholls, ex-member of the Local Court,
Ballaarat, will take notice of the above.
Let us return to the Eureka stockade.
Quadrupedante Putrem Sonitu Quatit Ungula Campum.
The excitement was of Satan. It was reported, the whole of the Melbourne road
was swarming with fresh reinforcements. The military would soon attack
the stockade, but Vern would lead the diggers to death or glory.
I went out to get positive information, and I did see some two hundred
red-coats stationed under arms at the foot of Black hill. The general
impression spread like wild-fire that the diggers would now all be slaughtered.
I returned, and was anxious to communicate with Lalor. The council room
was guarded by Californian faces, perfect strangers to me. The 'pass-word'
had been changed, and I was refused admittance.
Old colonial-looking fellows rode to and fro from all parts: some brought
canisters of gunpowder and bags of shot; others, fire-arms and boxes of caps.
They had been pressing stores.
All at once burst out a clamorous shouting. Captain Ross was entering
the stockade in triumph with some old fire-arms and a splendid horse.
They had been sticking up some three or four tents, called the Eureka
government camp. Great Works! that could have been done long before,
without so much fuss about it; and, forsooth, what a benefit to mankind
in general, that Commissioner Amos, ever since, was so frightened as to get
his large eyes involuntary squinting after his mare!!
Sly-grog sellers got also a little profit out of the Eureka Stockade.
A fellow was selling nobblers out of a keg of brandy hanging from his neck.
It required Peter Lalor in person to order this devil-send out of the stockade.
'Press for,' was the order of the hour. Two men on horseback were crossing
the gully below. Young Black--the identical one with a red shirt and blue cap,
who took down the names round Lalor's stump, on Bakery-hill on
Thursday morning, and who, to the best of my knowledge never had yet been
within the stockade--came out of the committee-room, and hastened up to me
with the order to pick out some men and press those two horses in.
I gave him a violent look, and made him understand that 'I won't do
the bushranger yet.' The order was however executed by fresh hands
entirely unknown to me, who rushed towards the horsemen, shouted to both
of them to stop, and with the threat of the revolver compelled them
to ride their horses within the stockade. I felt disgusted at the violence.
The reign of terror will not strike root among Britons because the
Austrian rule does not thrive under the British flag; and so here is
a crab-hole that brave Lalor alone can properly log up.
I asked in German from Vern the 'pass-word,' and on whispering 'Vinegar-hill'
to the sentinels, I was allowed to get out of the Stockade.
"Nein, sagte ich mirselbst, nein, eine solche eckliche Wirthschaft
habe ich noch nie geseh'n.
"Nom d'un nom! c'est affreux. Ces malheureuf sont-ils donc possedes?
"Odi profanum vulgus et arceo.
"Por vida deDios! por supuesto jo fuera el Duke de Alba, esos Gavachos,
carajo, yo los pegaria de bueno.
"Che casa del diavolo, per Dio! Che ti pare! niente meno si spalanca
l'inferno. Alla larga! Sor Fattorone: Pronti denari, Fan patti chiari.
Such were more or less the expressions to give vent to my feelings
on my way to the Prince Albert Hotel, Bakery-hill, to meet there a friend
or two, especially my old mate, Adolphus Lessman, Lieutenant of the Rifle-men.
Turbatus Est A Furore Oculus Meus.
The following is the scene, so characteristic of the times, as it was
going on at the Prince Albert:--
"Who's the landlord here?" was the growl from a sulky ruffian,
some five feet high, with the head of a bull-dog, the eyes of a vulture,
sunken in a mass of bones, neglected beard, sun-burnt, grog-worn,
as dirty as a brute,--the known cast, as called here in this colony,
of a 'Vandemonian,' made up of low, vulgar manners and hard talk,
spiked at each word, with their characteristic B, and infamous B again;
whilst a vile oath begins and ends any of their foul conceits. Their glory
to stand oceans of grog, joined to their benevolence of 'shouting'
for all hands, and their boast of black-eye giving, nose-smashing,
knocking in of teeth, are the three marks of their aristocracy.
Naturally cowards, they have learned the secret that 'Pluck,' does just as well
for their foul jobs. Grog is pluck, and the more grog they swallow,
the more they count on success. Hence their frame, however robust by nature,
wears out through hard drink, and goes the way of all flesh, rarely with
grey hairs. It is dangerous to approach them; they know the dodge
how to pick up a quarrel for the sake of gratifying their appetite
for fighting. You cannot avoid them in this colony; they are too numerous.
I saw hundreds of these Vandemonians, during my four months in gaol.
Their heart must be of the same stuff as that of vultures, because they are
of the same trade. In a word, they are the living witnesses among us,
of the terrible saying of Isaiah, 'The heart of man is desperately wicked.'
Through such did Satan plant his standard to rule this southern land,
before Christ could show his Cross; hence, before famous Ballaarat could point
at a barn, and call it a church, on the township, old Satan had three palaces
to boast of, the first of which--a match for any in the world--has made
the landlord as wealthy and proud as a merchant-prince of the City of London.
'Non ex illis Mecoenates,'--that's the secret how this land has produced
so many first-rate bullock-drivers.
The scene at the Prince Albert is now more interesting.
In Vino Veritas.
The Vandemonian was, of course, accompanied by nine more of his pals,
all of them armed to the teeth with revolvers, swords, pikes, and knives.
Carl Wiesenhavern, a man of noble character, and, therefore a man who hates
knavery, and has no fear of a knave, answered with his peculiar
German coolness, "Here I am, what do you want?"
"Nobblers round," was the eager reply.
"If that's what you want," replied Wiesenhavern, "you shall have it
"We got no money."
"I did not ask for any: understand me well, though;" pointing at each of them
with the forefinger of his clenched right hand, "you will have a nobbler
a-piece, and no more: afterwards you will go your way. Are you satisfied
with my conditions?"
"Yes, yes! we agree to that: go on you b----."
Wiesenhavern scorned to notice the fellow, and, according to the old custom
of the house, placed two decanters of brandy, together with the tumblers,
on the bar, saying, "Help yourselves, gentlemen."
They fell at once upon the brandy, and their mean rascality was shown
by some seizing the glass and covering it with the full hand to conceal
their greediness. Nobbler-drinking is an old colonial habit; it gives pluck
to the coward when he is 'up to something;' so happened it with these fellows.
"Well, landlord, your brandy is d---d good--the real sort of stuff,
and no b----y mistake. You shouted nobblers round for all hands--that's
all right; it's no more than fair and square now for the boys to shout
for you:" and, with a horrible curse, "Fill up the bottles; let's have
Wiesenhavern kept himself quiet. One of the ruffians showed his intention
to enter the bar, and play the landlord within. Wiesenhavern coolly
persuaded him back by the promise he would fetch from his room,
"something rowdy, the right old sort of stuff--Champagne Cognac, 'tres vieux'."
The fellows presumed their 'bouncing' was all the go now, and laughed
and cursed in old colonial style.
Wiesenhavern fetched his pistols, and his partner, Johan Brandt,
a double-barrelled gun. Now Mr. Brandt is one of those short,
broad-shouldered, sound, dog-headed Germans, with such a determinate look
when his otherwise slow wrath is stirred up, that it is not advisable
to tackle with his fists, and much less with his rifle. Wiesenhavern,
with that precision of manners, which always gains the point on such occasions,
placed a decanter full of brandy on the bar, and, with cocked pistols
in both hands, said, "Touch it, if you dare; if any one among you got the pluck
to put in his tumbler one drop out of that bottle there, he is a dead man;"
and Mr. Brandt backed him by simply saying:-
"I'll shoot the fellow, like a dog."
What was the result? Of course the same, whenever you deal with knaves--
and you make them understand what you mean. They were cowed;
and as by this time, the high words had called in several old customers
of the house who wished well to it, because they knew it deserved it,
so the ruffians had to cut for fear of their own dear lives.
Then it was related with sorrow, that several similar bands were scouring
the gold-fields in all directions and in the name of the committee
of the Eureka stockade, under cover pressing for fire-arms and ammunition,
plundered the most respectable stores of all they could lay their hands upon.
One instance, as reported there and then by parties who had just witnessed
A similar gang, four strong, had entered the store of D. O'Conner,
on the Golden Point, and asked in the name of the committee, powder and shot,
but the vagabonds did not care so much for ammunition for their guns,
as for the stuff for their guts, what tempted them most was fine good
Yorkshire hams, and coffee to wash it down. In short, they ransacked
the whole store; and each took care of 'something,' the best of course,
and therefore the cash-box, worth some twenty pounds was not forgotten.
The above are facts. I do not assert that such were the orders
of the committee, got up after four o'clock of same Saturday at the Eureka
stockade. I had no part or portion in the committee, and know nothing
of it personally.
Non Sit Nobis Vanum, Mane Surgere Ante Lucem.
I ran up to the stockade to remonstrate with Peter Lalor, for whom I had
too much respect to think for one moment, that he had any hand, and much less
that he had sanctioned, such suicidal proceedings.
Thanks to the password; I entered within the stockade. It must have been
not far from midnight. I found everything comparatively quiet; the majority
were either asleep of warming themselves round the big fire. I spoke
in German face to face, for the last time, with Thonen. M`Gill and two-thirds
of the Independent Californian Rangers' Rifle Brigade, in accordance with
the avocation expressed in the title, were out 'starring' to intercept
reinforcements reported on the road from Melbourne. Nealson and his division
were off for the same purpose. Was their lot that of Lot's wife?
Sir Charles Hotham must have possessed the rod of Moses to convert the quartz
of Victoria into red coats, as numerous as the locusts that plagued
Pharaoh's land. The Local Court of Ballaarat should recommend His Excellency
to carry out the 'abolition of shepherding at Sebastopol.'
I asked Thonen to see Lalor. I was answered that Peter, from sheer exhaustion,
must rest for an hour or two, and was asleep.
Myself not having closed an eye since Thursday, I felt severely the want
of sleep. Is not sabbath-keeping our day's cant in the English language?
Anyhow it must be admitted, in justice to both silver and gold lace,
that they take it in good earnest: to keep the sabbath is a holy and wholesome
thing for them. I do not remember what was my frame of mind at the time
I wished Thonen good night; very probably, "Enough for the day, the morrow
will have its own troubles:" at any rate, Thonen gave word to the 'outposts,'
chiefly Californians to let me pass to my tent: and having thrown myself
on my stretcher, with every thing quiet round about, I soon fell asleep.
On the afternoon of Sunday, the following notice was posted up:-
No light will be allowed to be kept burning in any
tent within musket-shot of the line of sentries after
8 o'clock p.m. No discharge of fire-arms in the
neighbourhood of the Camp will be permitted for any
The sentries have orders to fire upon any person
offending against these rules.
T. BAILEY RICHARDS,
Lieut. 40th Regt., Garrison Adjutant.
Remember This Sabbath Day (December Third), To Keep It Holy.
I awoke. Sunday morning. It was full dawn, not daylight. A discharge
of musketry--then a round from the bugle--the command 'forward'--and another
discharge of musketry was sharply kept on by the red-coats (some 300 strong)
advancing on the gully west of the stockade, for a couple of minutes.
The shots whizzed by my tent. I jumped out of the stretcher and rushed
to my chimney facing the stockade. The forces within could not muster
above 150 diggers.
The shepherds' holes inside the lower part of the stockade had been turned
into rifle-pits, and were now occupied by Californians of the
I.C. Rangers' Brigade, some twenty or thirty in all, who had kept watch
at the 'out-posts' during the night.
Ross and his division northward, Thonen and his division southward,
and both in front of the gully, under cover of the slabs, answered
with such a smart fire, that the military who were now fully within range,
did unmistakably appear to me to swerve from their ground: anyhow the command
"forward" from Sergeant Harris was put a stop to. Here a lad was really
courageous with his bugle. He took up boldly his stand to the left
of the gully and in front: the red-coats 'fell in' in their ranks to the right
of this lad. The wounded on the ground behind must have numbered a dozen.
Another scene was going on east of the stockade. Vern floundered across
the stockade eastward, and I lost sight of him. Curtain whilst making coolly
for the holes, appeared to me to give directions to shoot at Vern;
but a rush was instantly made in the same direction (Vern's) and a whole pack
cut for Warrenheip.
There was, however, a brave American officer, who had the command
of the rifle-pit men; he fought like a tiger; was shot in his thigh
at the very onset, and yet, though hopping all the while, stuck to Captain Ross
like a man. Should this notice be the means to ascertain his name,
it should be written down in the margin at once.
The dragoons from south, the troopers from north, were trotting in full speed
towards the stockade.
Peter Lalor, was now on the top of the first logged-up hole within
the stockade, and by his decided gestures pointed to the men to retire
among the holes. He was shot down in his left shoulder at this identical
moment: it was a chance shot, I recollect it well.
A full discharge of musketry from the military, now mowed down all
who had their heads above the barricades. Ross was shot in the groin.
Another shot struck Thonen exactly in the mouth, and felled him on the spot.
Those who suffered the most were the score of pikemen, who stood their ground
from the time the whole division had been posted at the top, facing the
Melbourne road from Ballaarat, in double file under the slabs,
to stick the cavalry with their pikes.
The old command, "Charge!" was distinctly heard, and the red-coats rushed
with fixed bayonets to storm the stockade. A few cuts, kicks and pulling down,
and the job was done too quickly for their wonted ardour, for they actually
thrust their bayonets on the body of the dead and wounded strewed about
on the ground. A wild "hurrah!" burst out and 'the Southern Cross'
was torn down, I should say, among their laughter, such as if it had been
a prize from a May-pole.
Of the armed diggers, some made off the best way they could, others surrendered
themselves prisoners, and were collected in groups and marched down the gully.
The Indian dragoons, sword in hand, rifle-pistols cocked, took charge
of them all, and brought them in chains to the lock-up.
Dirigat Dominus Reginum Nostram.
The red-coats were now ordered to 'fall in;' their bloody work was over,
and were marched off, dragging with them the 'Southern Cross.'
Their dead, as far as I did see, were four, and a dozen wounded,
including Captain Wise, the identical one, I think whom I speak of in relating
the events of Tuesday evening, November 28.
Dead and wounded had been fetched up in carts, waiting on the road, and all
red-things hastened to Ballaarat. The following is for the edification of all
the well-affected and well-disposed of the present and future generation:-
Ballaarat, Dec. 3rd, 1854.
Her Majesty's forces were this morning fired upon by a
large body of evil-disposed persons of various nations,
who had entrenched themselves in a stockade on the
Eureka, and some officers and men killed.
Several of the rioters have paid the penalty of their
crime, and a large number are in custody.
All well-disposed persons are earnestly requested to
return to their ordinary occupations, and to abstain
from assembling in large groups, and every protection
will be afforded to them by the authorities.
God save the Queen.
Veritatem Dico Non Menitor.
Here begins a foul deed, worthy of devils, and devils they were.
The accursed troopers were now within the stockade. They dismounted,
and pounced on firebrands from the large fire on the middle of the stockade,
and deliberately set in a blaze all the tents round about. I did see
with both eyes one of those devils, a tall, thick-shouldered, long-legged,
fast Vandemonian-looking trooper, purposely striking a bundle of matches,
and setting fire at the corner end, north of the very store of Diamond,
where we had kept the council for the defence. The howling and yelling
was horrible. The wounded are now burnt to death; those who had laid down
their arms, and taken refuge within the tents, were kicked like brutes,
and made prisoners.
At the burning of the Eureka Hotel, I expressed it to be my opinion that
a characteristic of the British race is to delight in the calamity of a fire.
The troopers, enjoying the fun within the stockade, now spread it without.
The tent next to mine (Quinn's) was soon in a blaze. I collected in haste
my most important papers, and rushed out to remonstrate against such
a wanton cruelty. Sub-inspector Carter pointing with his pistol ordered me
to fall in with a batch of prisoners. There were no two ways: I obeyed.
In the middle of the gully, I expostulated with Captain Thomas,
he asked me whether I had been made a prisoner within the stockade.
"No, sir," was my answer. He noticed my frankness, my anxiety and grief.
After a few words more in explanation, he, giving me a gentle stroke
with his sword, told me "If you really are an honest digger, I do not want you,
sir; you may return to your tent."
Mr. Gordon--of the store of Gordon and M`Callum, on the left of the gully,
near the stockade--who had been made prisoner, and was liberated in the same
way, and at the same time as myself, was and is a living witness to the above.
On crossing the gully to return to my tent, an infernal trooper trotting
on the road to Ballaarat, took a deliberate aim at me, and fired
his Minie rifle pistol with such a tolerable precision, that the shot
whizzed and actually struck the brim of my cabbage-tree hat, and blew it
off my head. Mrs. Davis, who was outside her tent close by,
is a living witness to the above.
At this juncture I was called by name from Doctor Carr, and Father Smyth,
directed me by signs to come and help the wounded within the stockade.
Quis Dabit Capiti Meo, Aquam Et Oculis Meis Fontem
Lacrymarum Et Plorabo Die Ac Nocte!
I hastened, and what a horrible sight! Old acquaintances crippled with shots,
the gore protruding from the bayonet wounds, their clothes and flesh burning
all the while. Poor Thonen had his mouth literally choked with bullets;
my neighbour and mate Teddy More, stretched on the ground, both his thighs
shot, asked me for a drop of water. Peter Lalor, who had been concealed
under a heap of slabs, was in the agony of death, a stream of blood
from under the slabs, heavily forcing its way down hill.
The tears choke my eyes, I cannot write any further.
Americans! your Doctor Kenworthy was not there, as he should have been,
according to Humffray's letter.
Catholics! Father Smyth was performing his sacred duty to the dying, in spite
of the troopers who threatened his life, and forced him at last to desist.
Protestants! spare us in future with your sabbath cant. Not one of your
ministers was there, helping the digger in the hour of need.
John Bull! you wilfully bend your neck to any burden for palaver and war
to protect you in your universal shop-keeping, and maintain your sacred rights
of property; but human life is to you as it was to Napoleon: for him,
fodder for the cannon; for you, tools to make money. A dead man needs
no further care, and human kind breeds fast enough everywhere after all,--
'Cetera quando rursum scribam'.
On my reaching the stockade with a pannikin of water for Teddy, I was amazed
at the apathy showed by the diggers, who now crowded from all directions
round the dead and wounded. None would stir a finger.
All on a sudden a fresh swarm of troopers cleared the stockade of all moving
things with the mere threat of their pistols.
All the diggers scampered away and entered all available tents, crouching
within the chimneys or under stretchers. The valorous, who had given
such a proof of their ardour in smothering with stones, bats, and broken
bottles, the 12th Regiment on their orderly way from Melbourne on Tuesday,
November 28, at the same identical spot on the Eureka, now allowed themselves
to be chained by dozens, by a handful of hated traps, who, a few days before,
had been kept at bay on the whole of the diggings, by the mere shouting
of 'Joe!' A sad reflection, indeed; a very sad reflection.
Myself and a few neighbours now procured some stretchers, and at the direction
of Doctor Carr, converted the London Hotel into an hospital,
and took there the wounded.
Said Doctor Carr despatched me to fetch his box of surgical instruments
from Dr. Glendinning's hospital on Pennyweight-hill, a distance of a full mile.
I hastened to return, with Dr. Glendinning himself, and I did my best
to assist the helpless, and dress their wounds.
IMPORTANT--I must call the attention of my reader to the following fact:--
When I entered the stockade with Dr. Carr's surgical box, Mr. Binney,
an old acquaintance since the times of Canadian Gully, took me warmly
by the hand, and said, "Old fellow, I am glad to see you alive! everybody
thinks (pointing to a dead digger among the heap) that's poor Great Works!"
The state of mind in which I was, gave me no time to take much notice
of the circumstances, and must have answered, "Thank God, I am alive,"
and proceeded to my duty.
The identical Mr. Binney, of the firm of Binney and Gillot, now storekeepers
on the Ballaarat township, is a living witness to the above statement.
Solicitor Lynn told me, 'in propria persona' in the Ballaarat prison,
that he would take care to bring forward evidence of the above,
as he had heard it himself, that such was the case; but I forgot to fee
this Lynn, and so he left me to the chance of being 'lynched.'
The Southern Cross, In Digger's Gore Imbrued,
Was Torn Away, And Left The Digger Mourning.
The following Letter, from the able pen of the spirited correspondent
of the 'Geelong Advertiser' who most undoubtedly must be a digger--that is,
one of ourselves, from among ourselves,--is here transcribed as a document
confirming the truths of this book:-
THE EUREKA MASSACRE
[From a Correspondent.]
To the Editor of the 'Geelong Advertiser' and Intelligencer.
Bakery-hill, December 3rd, 1854.
Friday you know all about; I will pass that over, and give you a faint outline
of what passed under my own eyes. During Saturday, there was a great deal
of gloom among the most orderly, who complained much of the parade of soldiery,
and the same cause excited a great deal of exasperation in the minds
of more enthusiastic persons, who declared that all parties ought to show
themselves, and declare whether they were for or against the diggers.
Then came a notice from the Camp, that all lights were to be extinguished
after eight o'clock, within half-a-mile from the Camp. At this time
it was reported that there were two thousand organised men at the Eureka
barricade. I was sitting in my tent, and several neighbours dropped in
to talk over affairs, and we sat down to tea, when a musket was heard
to go off, and the bullet whizzed close by us; I doused the light,
and we crept out on our hands and knees, and looked about. Between the Camp
and the barricade there was a fire we had not seen before, and occasionally
lights appeared to be hoisted, like signals, which attracted the attention
of a good many, some of whom said that they saw other lights like
return signals. It grew late. TO-MORROW, I FEAR ME, WILL PROVE A DAY
OF SORROW, IF THE AFFAIR BE NOT SETTLED BEFORE THEN. I and R---- lay down
in our clothes, according to our practice for a week past; and worn out
with perpetual alarms, excitement, and fatigue, fell fast asleep.
I didn't wake up till six o'clock on Sunday morning. The first thing
that I saw was a number of diggers enclosed in a sort of hollow square,
many of them were wounded, the blood dripping from them as they walked;
some were walking lame, pricked on by the bayonets of the soldiers
bringing up the rear. The soldiers were much excited, and the troopers
madly so, flourishing their swords, and shouting out--"We have waked up Joe!"
and others replied, "And sent Joe to sleep again!" The diggers' Standard
was carried by in triumph to the Camp, waved about in the air,
then pitched from one to another, thrown down and trampled on.
The scene was awful--twos and threes gathered together, and all felt stupefied.
I went with R---- to the barricade, the tents all around were in a blaze;
I was about to go inside, when a cry was raised that the troopers
were coming again. They did come with carts to take away the bodies,
I counted fifteen dead, one G----, a fine well-educated man, and a great
favourite. [Here, I think, the Correspondent alluded to me. My friends,
nick-named me--Carbonari Great works. ]--I recognised two others,
but the spectacle was so ghastly that I feel a loathing at the remembrance.
They all lay in a small space with their faces upwards, looking like lead,
several of them were still heaving, and at every rise of their breasts,
the blood spouted out of their wounds, or just bubbled out and trickled away.
One man, a stout-chested fine fellow, apparently about forty years old,
lay with a pike beside him: e had three contusions in the head,
three strokes across the brow, a bayonet wound in the throat under the ear,
and other wounds in the body--I counted fifteen wounds in that single carcase.
Some were bringing handkerchiefs, others bed furniture, and matting
to cover up the faces of the dead. O God! sir, it was a sight for
a sabbath morn that, I humbly implore Heaven, may never be seen again.
Poor women crying for absent husbands, and children frightened into quietness.
I, sir, write disinterestedly, and I hope my feelings arose from
a true principle; but when I looked at that scene, my soul revolted
at such means being so cruelly used by a government to sustain the law.
A little terrier sat on the, breast of the man I spoke of, and kept up
a continuous howl: it was removed, but always returned to the same spot;
and when his master's body was huddled, with the other corpses, into the cart,
the little dog jumped in after him, and lying again on his dead master's
breast, began howling again.----was dead there also, and----, who escaped,
had said, that when he offered his sword, he was shot in the side
by a trooper, as he was lying on the ground wounded. He expired
almost immediately. Another was lying dead just inside the barricade,
where he seemed to have crawled. Some of the bodies might have been removed--
I counted fifteen. A poor woman and her children were standing outside a tent;
she said that the troopers had surrounded the tent and pierced it
with their swords. She, her husband, and children, were ordered out
by the troopers, and were inspected in their night-clothes outside,
whilst the troopers searched the tent. Mr. Haslam was roused from sleep
by a volley of bullets fired through his tent; he rushed out, and was shot down
by a trooper, and handcuffed. He lay there for two hours bleeding
from a wound in his breast, until his friends sent for a black-smith,
who forced off the handcuffs with a hammer and cold chisel. When I last heard
of Mr. Haslam, a surgeon was attending him, and probing for the ball.
R----, from Canada, [Captain Ross, of Toronto, once my mate] escaped