Rosalie Medcraft is a decendant of Manalargenna who was the leader of the Trawlwoolway people in the Cape Portland area of north-east Tasmania. It was not until the death of her father in 1985 that she was free to acknowledge her Indigenous heritage.
Medcraft has been an Aboriginal Studies resource teacher in the northwest region of Tasmania. While she was writing guidelines for Aboriginal Studies in Tasmanian schools, she noticed the lack of Indigenous Tasmanian stories in the curiculum. A fellow teacher suggested she should write stories of her own life. Medcraft soon found it too much work for one person and asked her sister Valda Gee to help her finish the manuscript. The original manuscript for The Sausage Tree was written in longhand.
(Source: The Sausage Tree, Medcraft, R. & Gee, V. University of Queensland Press, 1995)
The Sausage Tree1995single work life story The title The Sausage Tree, celebrates the authors' favourite childhood game. 'This memoir tells of the sisters' childhood spent during the Depression in small-town Tasmania. For the family of nine, thrift was a virtue and home-grown food and hand-made clothing were a necessity. In later years, they learned of their Aboriginal heritage as descendants of Manalargenna, leader of the Trawlwoolway people of Cape Portland in north-east Tasmania.' (Source: Publisher's blurb)