By Carol Baxter
It was once the most important financial institution theft in Australian background. On Sunday 14 September 1828, thieves tunnelled via a sewage drain into the vault of Sydney's financial institution of Australia and stole 14 000 in notes and money - the similar of $20 million in cutting-edge forex. This audacious team of convicts not just defied the weekly exhortation 'thou shalt no longer steal!', they precise the financial institution owned by means of the colony's self-anointed the Aristocracy.
Delighted at this affront to their betters, Sydney's mostly felony and ex-criminal inhabitants did all they can to undermine the specialists' makes an attempt to seize the robbers and retrieve the spoils. whereas the determined financial institution administrators provided more and more huge rewards and the govt. officials forged longing seems to be on the gallows, the robbers endured to elude detection. Then in the future .
With a wealthy solid of characters who refused to abase themselves to the institution, this meticulously researched and fast paced heritage tells the tale of the bold financial institution of Australia theft and of the scheming robbers, grasping receivers and unlucky suspects whose lives have been irrevocably replaced through this outrageous crime.
On An impossible to resist Temptation
'. a piece that captures the reader. . . an exceptional instance of the way a very good tale can light up the past.' - affiliate Professor Gregory Melleuish, Australian Literary Review
'. [told] with a very good eye for the advanced motivations, either political and private, of characters [Baxter] paints a bright photo of Jane New's world.' - Dr Kirsten McKenzie, Sydney Morning Herald
'. [a] vibrant social history.' Canberra Times
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Additional resources for Breaking the Bank: An Extraordinary Colonial Crime
With few secondary industries or landlord-led improvements in husbandry, the country gradually outstripped its ability to feed itself. Anger and fear fed bitter resentment against the Protestant elite, who considered the Roman Catholics’ superstitions and religious rituals, their ignorance and simplicity, as signs of an uncivilised society, and treated them as lesser beings. The Irish Catholics rebelled against Protestant domination and British rule through political and social agitation and criminal activity, beginning a ferocious cycle of sectarian violence that has continued to the present day.
For some, these differences induced a feeling of unease. Hope lay only with the comforts of the familiar, of family and old acquaintances, of shared memories, traditions and routines, of the sense of control that the familiar offered. QX5 3/3/08 6:58 PM Page 22 BREAKING THE BANK reignited the flame that would forever draw them back to their old hearths. Others, however, saw in Sydney’s colour and vibrancy an aura of warmth and hope, of new and endless possibilities: perhaps a chance to reinvent themselves; more likely a world for the taking.
Word of their impending arrival soon reached the settlement. A flotilla of small boats mobbed the ship, bursting with greetings, demanding news from home and offering food and refreshments. As the Mariner rounded Bennelong Point, those on deck caught their first glimpse of the bustling harbour port of Sydney. For many of the transportees, their last memory of freedom had been of a London painted in the sombre hues of winter: leaden skies and bare branches, sooty buildings and gloomy alleyways, coldness, poverty and despair.