The Legacy of Eureka: Past, Present and Future, essays compiled and edited by Anne Beggs Sunter and Kevin T. Livingston. Paperback book published by Australian Studies Centre, University of Ballarat 1998, 73 pages.
These essays are drawn from a conference called The Legacy of Eureka. Part of the Eureka 140th Anniversary celebrations, it was organised by the University of Ballarat in association with Sovereign Hill, the Australian Catholic University, the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery and the City of Ballarat. Contributors include Geoffrey Blainey, Weston Bate, John Molony, Barry Jones, A.O., Peter Hiscock, Shirley Swain and Cheryl Saunders. The aim of the conference was to explore the significance of the events which occurred at and around the Eureka Stockade on 3 December 1854. The contributors examine the meaning of Eureka in the past, looking at ways in which the events have been memorialised and celebrated, at the local level as well as nationally. They also reflect on the meaning of Eureka in the present and in the future, examining its role in tourism and its contribution to current political and constitutional debates.
I wonder if any of the disgruntled 1854 gold diggers of Ballarat ever seriously considered that their legacy would still be discussed/debated/worshipped all these years later. Somehow I don't think legacy was on most of their minds at the time with most of the stockaders being more concerned with dodging gunfire (etc) and surviving than having a pub named after them.
The Eureka stockade is a big deal here in Victoria and also across Australia, and an even bigger deal in Ballarat which is only 25 minutes as the car drives from where I now sit. It's one of those events that is a true milestone in our short Australian European history. Anyone reading this that doesn't have a connection to Australia is probably wondering what the hell Eureka was (click here if this is you) which is why i'm of the firm belief that when this book does sell it will be within Australia as I can't really imagine someone sitting in Sweden (or anywhere else) thinking “Oh yeah. I would be really interested in reading about the Eureka rebellion.”