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Australia is the only country founded solely to contain convicts. This gives it a fascinating penal history, complete with numerous tales of convicts making daring escapes, ranging the bush as folk heroes, or becoming respected citizens.

Those who came included felons, brave settlers, entrepreneurial squatters, hopeful miners, optimistic free selectors and immigrants, each adding a chapter to our nation's story. The strands of our Aboriginal, penal and pioneering past, coupled with a proud war record and strong democratic principles, create our social history.

Hopefully, this book inspires you to learn more about our settlers, most of whom arrived with little or nothing, but left us with a multicultural, prosperous and proud Australia.