'Daisy Bates was once an iconic figure in Australia but her popular and academic reputation became tarnished by her retrograde views. Her credibility was also put in doubt through the exposure of her fictionalised Irish background. In more recent times, however, her ethnographic data on the Aborigines of Western Australia has been an invaluable source for Native Title claims, while her views on Aboriginal extinction, cannibalism and 'castes' are being seen as typical of her time. This article briefly reviews what had been the orthodox academic opinion of her scientific achievement before summarising what is reliably known of her early history and indicating what kind of person is revealed in the 3000 or more letters that she left behind.' (Author's abstract).