Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.
The Dig Tree (2002)
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0767908287, Hardcover)The harrowing true story of the Burke and Willis expedition team who took on the Australian wilds 150 years ago--and lost.
They departed Melbourne's Royal Park in the summer of 1860, a misfit party of eighteen amateur explorers cheered on by thousands of well-wishers. Their mission: to chart a course across the vast unmapped interior of Australia, from Melbourne to the northern coast. Months later, only one man returned alive--with tales of heroism, hardships, and lost opportunities that were by turns terrifying and darkly comic.
Drawing its title from one of the few remaining traces of the expedition, The Dig Tree combines the danger of Sebastian Junger with the irony of Bill Bryson to relive the tragic journey of these completely initiated adventurers. The cast of characters includes the expeditionleader; a reckless, charming Irish policeman known for getting lost on his way home from the pub; an eccentric nature enthusiast from Germany; an alcoholic camel handler; and a rogue American horse-breaker who is just in it for the money. For nine harrowing months, their quest for glory shifts from idiocy to perseverance and then inexorably toward tragedy. The nightmare culminates in a last haunting message left behind a group of desperate and dying men--the word DIG carved into what is now Australia's most famous tree.
The Dig Tree follows this compelling journey through a forgotten corner of history to examine a daring expedition that came unbelievably close to success only to let it slip away.
(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:38:01 -0400)
Sarah Murgatroyd has brought together for the first time new scientific and historical evidence, and tells in brilliant detail the story of Burke and Wills, the explorers who set out to cross Australia from coast to coast. The Dig Tree describes vividly the remarkable courage, suffering and moments of sheer lunacy, as Burke and Wills struggled to survive in a harsh land they did not understand. Murgatroyd reveals fascinating detail - for example, that Burke had a notoriously bad sense of direction, and was famous for getting lost even on the way home from his local pub! Though we all know the basic story of the Burke and Wills expedition, The Dig Tree reveals just how little most of us know of the individuals, the politics, the blunders and the ambitions behind this extraordinary event in Australia's history.
An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.
Is this you?
Become a LibraryThing Author.