by Ann Beaumont
Published by Highland House Publications, Australia
Winner of a 2014 National Trust (New South Wales) Heritage Award this lively narrative traces the story of horse thief William Harper, sentenced to death at the Old Bailey in 1799 but who was reprieved and transported to New South Wales.
His freeborn son James was born in the colony and worked his way up from drover, to policeman and then landowner. James and his convict wife Mary Robinson were among the first settlers of the town of Berrima, established 1831. They built a substantial inn, The Surveyor General, there in 1834. Two years later they built and moved their family into the finest house in the town which became known as Harper’s Mansion.
Researched and written mainly from primary sources this book follows the fortunes of the Harper Family and subsequent owners of Harper’s Mansion, and gives an insight into life in a colonial village. It is now owned by the National Trust (NSW) and is one of its most visited properties.
118 pages, illustrated throughout (B&W & colour), thorough index, paperback.
ISBN 978 0 9804464 8 7