AustLit logo

AustLit

image of person or book cover 4038883946372597259.jpg
Image courtesy of publisher's website.
Issue Details: First known date: 2022... 2022 Boundary Crossers : The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

The remarkable and revealing stories of the bushrangers history forgot.

'Bushrangers are Australian legends. Ned Kelly, Ben Hall, ‘Captain Thunderbolt’ and their bushranging brethren are famous. They’re remembered as folk heroes and celebrated for their bravery and their ridicule of inept and corrupt authorities. But not all Australian bushrangers were white men. And not all were seen in this glowing light in their own times.

'In Boundary Crossers, historian Meg Foster reveals the stories of bushrangers who didn’t fit the mould. African-American man Black Douglas, who was seen as the ‘terror’ of the Victorian goldfields, Sam Poo, known as Australia’s only Chinese bushranger, Aboriginal man Jimmy Governor, who was renowned as a mass murderer, and Captain Thunderbolt’s partner, Aboriginal woman Mary Ann Bugg, whose extraordinary exploits extended well beyond her time as ‘the Captain’s Lady’.

'All lived remarkable lives that were far more significant, rich and complex than history books have led us to believe. Governor saw himself defending his family and fighting injustice. Mary Ann Bugg lived on the run with Thunderbolt, dressed in men’s clothes, assaulted and outwitted the police and manipulated colonial expectations to further her own ends. Sam Poo may have been an innocent victim instead of a violent killer. And Black Douglas was never simply a colonial bogeyman of settlers’ creation.'  (Publication summary)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Sydney, New South Wales,: NewSouth Publishing , 2022 .
      image of person or book cover 4038883946372597259.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 288p.
      Note/s:
      • Published November 2022
      ISBN: 9781742237527

Works about this Work

[Review] Boundary Crossers: The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers Maggie Nolan , 2024 single work review
— Appears in: Journal of Australian Studies , vol. 48 no. 1 2024; (p. 152-154)

— Review of Boundary Crossers : The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers Meg Foster , 2022 single work biography

'Boundary Crossers offers a history of bushrangers who have been forgotten, misremembered or neglected. Meg Foster’s central premise in Boundary Crossers is that “not all bushrangers were white men”, and she offers case studies of four “other” bushrangers to prove it. William Douglas, for example, was a widely feared African-American bushranger on the goldfields of Victoria in the 1850s, to whom two chapters are devoted. There is a chapter each on Sam Poo, a Chinese man accused of bushranging in the 1860s, and Mary Ann Bugg, a Worimi Aboriginal woman who lived on the run with her better-known white bushranging partner, Captain Thunderbolt, and two final chapters on Jimmy Governor, a self-styled bushranger popularised in Thomas Keneally’s The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith. Each chapter sketches out its subject’s backstory, to which Foster adds details and context to paint a more complex picture.' (Introduction)

Meg Foster Uncovers the Stories of Australia’s ‘Other’ Bushrangers Karen Fox , 2023 single work review
— Appears in: History Australia , vol. 20 no. 4 2023; (p. 603-604)

— Review of Boundary Crossers : The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers Meg Foster , 2022 single work biography

'Bushrangers are national legends in Australia, and the names of figures like Captain Thunderbolt, Ben Hall, Jack Donohoe, and, of course, Ned Kelly, are well known to many. In her first book, Meg Foster sets out to reveal the unknown histories of the country’s ‘other’ bushrangers: those who were not the white men celebrated by the legend. Bushrangers who were female, Indigenous Australian, Chinese, or African-American, she argues, have been left out of ‘the national mythos’ (2), ignored in public culture and popular memory. Their extraordinary lives and stories are the focus of Boundary Crossers.' (Introduction)

Meg Foster Uncovers the Stories of Australia’s ‘Other’ Bushrangers Karen Fox , 2023 single work review
— Appears in: History Australia , vol. 20 no. 4 2023; (p. 603-604)

— Review of Boundary Crossers : The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers Meg Foster , 2022 single work biography

'Bushrangers are national legends in Australia, and the names of figures like Captain Thunderbolt, Ben Hall, Jack Donohoe, and, of course, Ned Kelly, are well known to many. In her first book, Meg Foster sets out to reveal the unknown histories of the country’s ‘other’ bushrangers: those who were not the white men celebrated by the legend. Bushrangers who were female, Indigenous Australian, Chinese, or African-American, she argues, have been left out of ‘the national mythos’ (2), ignored in public culture and popular memory. Their extraordinary lives and stories are the focus of Boundary Crossers.' (Introduction)

[Review] Boundary Crossers: The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers Maggie Nolan , 2024 single work review
— Appears in: Journal of Australian Studies , vol. 48 no. 1 2024; (p. 152-154)

— Review of Boundary Crossers : The Hidden History of Australia’s Other Bushrangers Meg Foster , 2022 single work biography

'Boundary Crossers offers a history of bushrangers who have been forgotten, misremembered or neglected. Meg Foster’s central premise in Boundary Crossers is that “not all bushrangers were white men”, and she offers case studies of four “other” bushrangers to prove it. William Douglas, for example, was a widely feared African-American bushranger on the goldfields of Victoria in the 1850s, to whom two chapters are devoted. There is a chapter each on Sam Poo, a Chinese man accused of bushranging in the 1860s, and Mary Ann Bugg, a Worimi Aboriginal woman who lived on the run with her better-known white bushranging partner, Captain Thunderbolt, and two final chapters on Jimmy Governor, a self-styled bushranger popularised in Thomas Keneally’s The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith. Each chapter sketches out its subject’s backstory, to which Foster adds details and context to paint a more complex picture.' (Introduction)

Last amended 14 Dec 2022 10:52:13
X