Stories of Colonial South Australia Author: Gwenneth Walton

The Protector

The punitive expedition to the Coorong after 25 survivors of the shipwreck Maria were massacred by Aborigines in 1840 .

By unknown artist,  public domain at Google Cultural Institute 

The Protector


The Protector is not only a South Australian book for South Australians but also a thoughtful study of Aboriginal issues for all Australians.

Set in Colonial Adelaide and its environs during the years 1839 to 1841 The Protector records and explores the relationships between Aboriginal and European residents of a British Colony.  While both government and settlers aspired to a fair and just treatment of the land's traditional owners, frontier violence did occur.

'The Protector' is Dr Matthew Moorhouse, a young idealistic Englishman sent by Britain's Colonial Commissioners to be the first full-time official whose sole duty is to "protect the rights of the Native people."

The first two years of Dr Moorhouse's journey from innocence to wisedom depicts the highs and lows of colonial life and one man's quiet determination to fulfil his vocation.


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