Author(s): WEST JOEL & ROPER ROGER
Over 100 years ago Harry Harbord Morant (the Breaker) was shot by a firing squad in Pretoria. Thus began his ascension to national hero. Over the years, Australians have managed to turn his disgrace into distinction, to the point where a vocal body is now seeking a British pardon for Morant.Workhouse-born Edwin Murrant, educated by the Freemasons, emigrated on a 1 passage to Australia at the age of nineteen. He found work on a cattle station in Queensland but, charged with stealing pigs, he was thrown out and spent the next sixteen years in Queensland as a bushman, balladeer and black sheep renowned for his riding skills. Changing his name, he joined the army and went to the Boer War in South Africa, eventually becoming a lieutenant in an irregular unit fighting in Northern Transvaal. Enraged by the death of a friend in battle, he organised the murder of prisoners, one of his soldiers and a priest by way of revenge.Arrested and tried, he was sentenced to death and shot, a climax to a life of vagabondage. Australians suggest he did not have a 'fair go' and was martyred by Lord Kitchener. Others remain fixed in their opinions: he took the law into his own hand and paid the ultimate price for his crimes. This intensively researched book, featuring a wealth of new information, reveals the truth behind the legend.
Born in Bournemouth, Joe West attended the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. As an infantryman and then a helicopter pilot he served in the Caribbean, South East Asia, Europe and Ireland. Leaving the army he flew helicopters to oil rigs in the North Sea and India. He is now retired. Roger Roper was born in Wells, Somerset and studied Acoustical Engineering at the University of Southampton. After living in Australia for twelve years, he returned to the UK and completed his archaeology degree at Bristol, where he works as an engineer and archaeologist.