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Sugar Commission 1889

There are tons of topics in the tropics and the following people who were witnesses at an 1889 Royal Commission provide intriguing evidence into the sugar cane industry and tropical produce of that time.


It is a perfect time capsule.


They were all real, living people, known amongst their peers, who now speak with insight, in their own voices about their part in that pioneering period.


It was an entrancing era of heat, kanaka labour, Chinese, racism, droughts, the threat of total industry collapse, and the ravages of grubs, pests and disease.


Plus staying sane in the humidity and working from dawn till dusk to keep alive without contracting tropical fevers or suffering animal attacks, snake poisoning or a lonely personal mishap.


Many did and here they speak eloquently of their own unique Far North Queensland tales one hundred and ten years later.


All the information contained here was supplied by witnesses at this Royal Commission - 400 pages of information transcribed and summarised.

1889 Sugar Commission
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Index to Witnesses
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