State Library of NSW

Journal commencing 18th July 1832


Documenting colonisation in Tasmania

Writing it All Down

Journal commencing 18th July 1832The sketch shows an Aborigine, in north-west Tasmania, dressed in mourning for a young girl whose death Robinson noted on 2 October 1832.

George Augustus Robinson (1791–1866) is one of the more controversial figures in Australian history. In 1829, he accepted a government position which had been established to mediate peace with Tasmania’s Aboriginal population. Conciliation soon meant the removal of Aborigines from their traditional lands. By August 1834, practically all Aborigines had been isolated on Flinders Island in Bass Strait.

This solution was a tragedy—the majority of Aboriginal people died soon after re-settlement— but most colonists considered the conflict resolved.

Robinson’s journals are an extraordinary record of his activities. He was an assiduous and observant chronicler, describing events, landscapes, natural history, his travelling companions and people he met, often illustrated with simple drawings.
Display item Journal commencing 18th July 1832


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