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Bathurst (8 articles)

Peter Hogan

Peter Hogan was born in the New England district of New South Wales, probably in the 1840s.  He later travelled to the Darling Downs in Queensland where he was baptized.  After returning to New South Wales he worked as a tracker for the police from 1864 to 1866 and was involved in the pursuit of Ben Hall’s gang of bush...

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Jack Cave

Jack Cave was born in Wiradjuri country in the Bathurst district in about 1865.  He grew up on local properties and learned the skills of a horse breaker.  Around the turn of the century he moved to the Walgett district and took up the job of tracker at Mogil Mogil in 1900.  He was later the tracker at Glencoe from 1904 to...

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A General History

Early History

Since the beginning of the colony, government agencies, explorers, surveyors and members of the general public called upon the tracking abilities of Aboriginal men and women.  First Fleet officers and early land-owners sometimes made use of Aboriginal men to track and capture escaped convicts.  Alexander Berry, for example, relied on an Aboriginal man known as Broughton (or Toodwick)...

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Billy Dargin

Billy Dargin was born on the Bogan River in about 1843.  Nothing is known about his parents, but it was recorded at the time of his death in 1865 that he obtained his surname through working for Peter Dargin, a squatter who owned land in the Bathurst district and further west.  Dargin is common Aboriginal surname from the Bogan River...

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Tracker Tommy of Brewarrina

  Tracker Tommy was based at Brewarrina in 1874 and throughout the year he undertook a variety of jobs.  Unfortunately, no personal details about Tommy are known at this time [ref]An Aboriginal man known as McElligott’s Tommy was arrested on suspicion of having killed another Aboriginal man at a camp near Brewarrina in July 1876 (Maitland Mercury and Hunter River...

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John Watkins

A distinguished tracker, John Watkins (nick-named Sir Watkin Wynne), was born about 1830, probably in Wiradjuri country between Bathurst and Forbes [ref]Sydney Morning Herald 9 August 1887: 8.  I have inferred the broad area of Watkin’s birth place from the area where he is first mentioned in the historical record and the area to which he returned after retiring from...

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Molong Police Station

Molong Police Station An early tracker who worked at Molong was Peter Hogan, an Aboriginal man from the New England district.  Hogan was on patrol with Senior Constable Herbert and Constables Ambrose and Cook near Molong in March 1865 in pursuit of bushrangers.  Hogan and Cook were put in charge of the horses one night after camp was made on...

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Billy Bogan

Billy Bogan, also known as William Field, was born on the Bogan River to the north of Nyngan in 1862, possibly at Billybingbone, another name he was known by. Employed as a tracker at Warren in 1882, he witnessed Charles Robertson stealing forage from the police station. Robertson was released on bail and he soon attempted to bribe Bogan with...

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NSW Aboriginal Trackers

This website explores the history of Aboriginal trackers in NSW from 1862 when the current NSW Police Force was established through to 1973 when the last tracker, Norman Walford, retired.  You can read about the lives of individual trackers and some of the incredible tracking feats they performed.  There is also information about the police stations where they worked and...

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Police Stations

There were over 200 NSW police stations that employed Aboriginal trackers between 1862 and 1973.  Many were concentrated in the central-west and north-west of the state, the agricultural and pastoral heartland of NSW.  This is because one of the main jobs of trackers was to pursue sheep, cattle and horse thieves. Trackers sometimes lived in small huts out the back...

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A General History

Early History Since the beginning of the colony, government agencies, explorers, surveyors and members of the general public called upon the tracking abilities of Aboriginal men and women.  First Fleet officers and early land-owners sometimes made use of Aboriginal men to track and capture escaped convicts.  Alexander Berry, for example, relied on an Aboriginal man known as Broughton (or Toodwick)...

Learn More

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