Black Town single work   poetry   "From this dull portal, (whence th' expectant eye"
  • Author: Charles Tompson http://www.poetrylibrary.edu.au/poets/tompson-charles
Composed: Sydney, New South Wales,
Issue Details: First known date: 1826 1826
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Mourns the passing of the Parramatta Aboriginal School founded by Macquarie.' (Webby)

Notes

  • Author's notes:

    • This deserted Hamlet is situate upon the New Richmond Road, distant about twenty eight miles from the Metropolis. These lines were written in the Veranda of the Chapel. (Monitor, 1.3 (2 June 1826): 22) )
    • WRITTEN in the Verandah of the Chapel at the deserted hamlet of "BLACK TOWN," an Establishment formed by Government some years since, for the purpose of civilizing the aboriginal Natives of Australia, and teaching them the art of agriculture, &c. on the new Richmond-road, about 28 miles distant from the metropolis. It is much to be lamented that the poor heathen possessors were allowed to desert the Establishment, as much good emanated from the Rules first adopted there. Mr. WALKER, of the Wesleyan Mission, formerly officiated in the Chapel, and was entrusted with the care of the Pupils and Establishment. That gentleman has since left it, and at the time I wrote the following Elegy, the Chapel and Cottages were deserted, the latter in ruins, and the whole scene exhibited the strongest marks of desolation. I, however, now understand, that it is the intention of the Government to renew the Establishment. (Wild Notes from the Lyre of a Native Minstrel)
  • Editor's note: Ths Poem, we feel confident will excite the public interest, as preceeding from the pen of a Native, and a pupil of the Rev. [Henry] Fulton, of Castlereagh. We congratulate both master and scholar, on the excellent sentiments and real genius exhibited in these verses. It looks well for Australia, when her young sons devote their talents to the illustration of principles and feelings which do honour to human nature. (Monitor, 1.3 (2 June 1826): 22)
  • Further background on the school which forms the subject of this poem is available on the Parramatta City Council website.

  • 'Tompson apparently objected to this poem appearing after the publication of his collection [Wild Notes from the Lyre of a Native Minstrel], for on 23 June 1826 the editor of the Monitor wrote "We read Mr. Thompson's [sic] letter respecting the publication in the Monitor of his poem Black Town. While it does us no discredit, it is creditable to that Gentleman. The manuscript was our own property and we had a right to print it. But had we considered it would have done the young Scion of Australia the least harm, we would have forborne [sic]. We know several Gentlemen have had their attention called to become Subscribers to Mr. Thompson's [sic] Poems, solely from reading our publication.' p.4 (Webby)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Last amended 3 Dec 2012 11:09:03
Subjects:
  • Parramatta, Parramatta area, Sydney, New South Wales,
  • 1810s
  • 1820s
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