Author(s): David Hill
This is the story of how a struggling convict settlement grew into six dynamic colonies and then the remarkable nation of Australia. Told through the key figures who helped build it into the thriving nation it is today, David Hill once again offers up Australian history at its most entertaining and accessible. In his latest book, David Hill traces the story of our nation from its European beginnings to Federation. When James Cook landed on the east coast of Australia, the rest of the world had some idea of how empty, vast and wild this continent was, but so little was known of it that in 1788 most people thought it was two lands. In the subsequent years, its coastline was charted, its interior opened up, and its cities, laws and economy developed. In this riveting, wide-ranging history, David Hill traces how this happened through the key figures who built this country into the thriving nation it is today- from its prescient and fair-minded first governor, Arthur Phillip, to the unpopular William Bligh, the victim of the country's first and only military coup; from the visionary builder and law-maker Lachlan Macquarie to William Wentworth, the son of a convict who secured Australia's first elected parliament; from Henry Parkes, the grand old man of politics who started the fraught process of Federation, to the first prime minister, Edmund Barton. It was Barton who formed the first Australian government just in time for the inaugural celebrations on 1 January 1900, when the nation of Australia was born! David Hill is one of our most popular writers of Australian history. His previous books, The Forgotten Children, 1788, The Gold Rushand The Great Racehave all been bestsellers.
During his remarkable career, David Hill has been chairman then managing director of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation; chairman of the Australian Football Association; chief executive and director of the State Rail Authority; chairman of Sydney Water Corporation; a fellow of the Sydney University Senate; and chairman of CREATE (an organisation representing Australian children in institutional care). He has held a number of other executive appointments and committee chair positions in the areas of sport, transport, international radio broadcasting, international news providers, politics, fiscal management and city parks. David came from England to Australia in 1959 under the Fairbridge Farm School Child Migrant scheme. He left school at 15, then returned to complete his Master's degree in economics while working as an economics tutor at Sydney University. In 2006 he was awarded a Diploma of Arts with merit in classical archaeology from Sydney University and subsequently graduated in classical archaeology. He is an honorary associate at the Sydney University departments of archaeology and classics and ancient history, and a visiting fellow at the University of New South Wales. Since 2011 he has been the manager of an archaeological study of the ancient Greek city of Troizen. He has for many years been a leading figure in the international campaign to have the Parthenon sculptures returned from the British Museum to Greece.