Auld Lang Syne Papers

A series of historical Tasmanian newspaper articles written in the 1890's under the pen-name of "The Scout"

Naturally I am an individual possessing a special bobby for ransacking the dustholes of the past. I am never so happy as when unearthing musty records of times and people that have faded away in the dim recesses of long ago. What I discover in the course of my various researches is occasionally of interest to my friends and acquaintances, some of whom apparently seldom tire of "drawing me out," as they term It, and thus inducing me to aid them in wiling away an hour or two with stories of "Auld Lang Syne." Much that I have noted I am loth to speak upon, for the pages of years that have flown have so often laid bare grimy histories which had better be left to moulder away in that oblivion to which they had been consigned ere my curious hand brought them once more Into the light of day. Therefore, these records, tinged with gloom will I carefully fold away, for mine shall not be the pen to reveal the painful stories they contain. There is, however, a lighter side to the knowledge my different excursions into the part have brought me, and it is upon this aspect I intend to dwell, at least so far as circumstances will permit me, in the compilation of the random notes which are to follow. For the information they contain I must acknowledge myself indebted to old people, mouldy papers, and antique documents, and if that information in occasionally disconnected I must only crave the reader's indulgence, for my spare time has been far too limited to permit of my undertaking anything in the form of a detailed history. Therefore, without further preliminary, I will get to work "straight off," as our American cousins would say, and ask the reader in fancy to go back into the vale of years and accompany me in our imaginary journey from Hobart to Oatlands, a distance of 52 miles, on January 17, 1829, or upwards of sixty-three years ago. For the various matters of detail contained in this descriptive itinerary I acknowledge myself indebted to several old works I have at different times unearthed during the course of my researches. 1

  • 1. THE TRAVELLER - Launceston Examiner (Tas. : 1842 - 1899) 17 December 1892: p10