The Natives

In these early years the squatters of the district were scattered, at wide intervals, throughout a great extent of country, and, being in the midst of native tribes who were not only numerous but of a peculiarly hostile disposition, they often found themselves in a very precarious situation. The blacks swarmed on the runs, killing the sheep and stealing the property of the squatters, who had many annoyances to suffer and injuries to guard against. But their retaliation oftentimes exhibited a ferocity and inhumanity almost incrediable in civilized men.

The Government troopers showed little compunction in destroying scores of natives; and, strange to say, the most inhuman atrocities were comitted by blacks who were employed to act as troopers. On one occassion, after the murder of a white man by two blacks, a band of troopers, in the dead of night, stealthily surrounded the tribe to which the murderers belonged, whilst it was holding a corroboree, and, at a given signal, fired a volley into the midst of the dancing crowd - a blind and ruthless revenge, from which, however, the two murderers escaped.


History of Australia