Frontier Wars: Inventing massacre stories

The death toll of the roving parties In the first three months of 1828, there were twenty-seven separate assaults on British settlers by the Aborigines of Van Diemen’s Land. They killed eleven white stock­men. In April, Lieutenant-Governor Arthur responded with a policy to expel all Aborigines from the settled districts. ‘I am at length con­vinced,’ he … Continue reading Frontier Wars: Inventing massacre stories

Frontier Wars: Fact or Fiction? Massacre stories and the policy of separatism

Massacre stories and the policy of separatism Henry Reynolds' book, This Whispering in our Hearts (1998), is a history of those humanitarians and missionaries in Australia who over the past two centuries have taken the Aboriginal side and who have tried to change the behaviour of their fellow Europeans towards the indigenous people of this continent. Reynolds … Continue reading Frontier Wars: Fact or Fiction? Massacre stories and the policy of separatism

Frontier Wars: Fact or Fiction? The fabrication of the Aboriginal death toll

The fabrication of the Aboriginal death toll There have been three serious attempts to estimate the total number of Aborigines killed by Europeans in frontier conflict since 1788. By serious attempts, I mean calculations made by people who are recognised as historians and who use historical evidence and argumentation. They have been made by Henry … Continue reading Frontier Wars: Fact or Fiction? The fabrication of the Aboriginal death toll

Frontier Wars: Fact or Fiction? The invention of massacre stories

The myths of frontier massacres in Australian history The first part of this essay will demonstrate just how flimsy is the case that the massacre of Aborigines was a defining feature of the European settlement of Australia. The second part will examine the estimates by historians of the total number of Aborigines killed and show … Continue reading Frontier Wars: Fact or Fiction? The invention of massacre stories