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Pictures of the Past: Memories of Men I Have Met and Places I Have Seen

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Written by Francis H. Grundy in 1879, this book gives an overview of the author's life as an engineer in England as well as his time in New South Wales and Queensland.

Topics covered include:

  • Part 1: Birth of the author and of the railway system, School days, Introduction to engineering, Life as a civil engineer, George Stephenson, Railway mania, and Last days in England
  • Part 2: First days in New South Wales, Camping out in the bush, A sojourn in Queensland, Colonial stories, Duke of Edinburgh, A trip to the gold fields, Bush wanderings, and A trip to Lake Macquarie
"... We visited the world-celebrated claims at Hill End, and saw at various points that narrow vein of quartz out of which the few were making fortunes. Tales of the pluck shown by Krohman, Holterman, Bragg, Brown, Porter, and many others, abound. For years some of these men 'stuck to it,' sold their furniture and effects, starved themselves, worked for scanty wages four days a week in order to get the means to go on with their own claims for the other two; and their wives helped them, encouraging them to persevere. I know one case, at least, told me by the man himself, where he was 'dead beat,' home and hope both being gone. He told his wife he would 'give it best,'leave the place, and begin the world again somewhere else. She wouldn't let him do so, but, as he said, 'hounded ' him on again. And they had their reward. The vein was reached, the quartz raised, and with the first crushing came a fortune."