A two part story portraying the ancestry of one man, whose heritage evolved from two different cultures.
His eclectic Great Grandfathers, Henry and Philemon, were boatsmen who surrendered their rudderless and carefree ways, never again returning to the Swedish seas and the canals of British Birmingham. One overcomes a tragic childhood using the ocean as an escape and panacea. The other survives an adventurous voyage on an immigrant ship with his family.
One sailor deserted in Sydney town on a ship that was soon after wrecked on a reef, expunging his illegal entry into Australia. The other mariner disembarked legally from London, qualifying for a selection of crown land that led to owning a dairy farm.
Both began their lives fatherless, but successfully reared a family of their own as early pioneers of Queensland. A conflict arose when Philemon’s grandson’s pacifist upbringing was challenged from being drawn into the Great War and the Battle of the Somme. Both passed down myths and legends about their lives and the truth of their heritage was distorted over time.
‘The author has done very well covering all the history within this book, not only on Brisbane and its beginnings in settlement and commerce, but also within England and Sweden. A very enlightening read.’