This is the first biography of this extraordinary Scottish gentleman. It will take its rightful place amongst the definitive histories of Australia’s founding fathers.
Sydney’s colonial society loved to ridicule the colourful and controversial figure of Alexander Macleay. Likewise, historians over the years have either criticised or completely ignored him. But when it came to serious matters, such as who was to be Australia’s first Speaker in the Legislative Council in 1843, public opinion changed. For there simply was no other person in the colony whose experience and skills matched those of Alexander Macleay. The story of the man who introduced wisteria to Australia as well as the stunning jacaranda whose mauve flowers adorn many gardens, is traced from the remote north of Scotland, and to London and the Linnean Society, and through his latter years in Sydney where he took up the position of Colonial Secretary in 1826. He never returned to his homeland. Dismissed from public office by Governor Bourke in 1836 amidst bitter intrigue, his life was filled with adventure, romance (especially his children’s romances), a passion for natural history and financial problems which ultimately resulted in personal calamity. Yet the Macleay Museum at the University of Sydney and Macleay Street in Kings Cross remind us of the significance of Alexander Macleay, whilst the Royal Botanic Gardens, the New South Wales State Library, the Australian Museum and the Australian Club are just a few of Australia’s early institutions that benefitted from his active involvement. His magnificent house, Elizabeth Bay House, is still the finest colonial mansion in New South Wales.
A Garden on the Margaret: the path to Old Bridge House
Gillian Lilleyman, ISBN 9780646553467, 24cm x 24cm Hardback, 136 pages plus index RRP $49.95
Available from the author/publisher at email@example.com
This book traces the history of Old Bridge House from its earliest days as a halfway point on the road between Augusta and the Vasse to the property’s current role as a well-known Western Australian garden. Built by the Bussell family, Bridge House along with other Bussell properties at Wallcliffe and Ellensbrook were the cornerstones of settlement in the South West, long before the township of Margaret River was established.
Old Bridge House Garden, which marks the site of the original cottage, belongs to Zoe, Barbara and Shirley Peirce, whose family’s connection with the property began in 1902. The garden has been on the inventory of the Heritage Council of Western Australia for the Augusta-Margaret River Shire since 1996. However, its future is subject to local planning requirements, a situation that will strike a chord with Australian Garden History Society members, some of whom may have visited the garden during the 1998 national conference.
Sale Botanic Gardens & Lake Guthridge
by Ann & Peter Synan
Lookups Research, Sale, Vic 2010 (ISBN 97809579393630: 240pp, hardback, RP $40 plus postage (available from publisher, Lookups Research, PO Box 678, Sale, Vic 3850 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Review Australian Garden History Volume 22 Number 4. 2011
Here, two well-credentialed local historians have dug deeply into local sources and official records to provide a highly readable and profusely illustrated record of a (now) much-loved garden. Following its reservation in 1860, this site has undergone the vicissitudes suffered by many such reservations, but following renewed public interest in the last decade, the garden and adjoining lake have undergone substantial rejuvenation. This is a substantial, well researched, and colourfully designed book; a model for emulation by any aspiring botanic gardens friends group or local government manager.
Over the Fence and Overlooked: traditional plants in Queensland’s gardening heritage.
Kyleigh Simpson & Michael Simpson
CopyRight Publishing, [Brisbane], 2009 (ISBN 9781876344 66 5): hardback RRP $49.50 (available from email@example.com or 85 Western Avenue, Montville, Qld 4560. Price includes postage)
Review Australian Garden History Volume 21 Number 3 2010.
This book is an enthusiastic if unstructured look at traditional Queensland gardens and especially their plants. The sectional heading ‘Trees we have enjoyed, which blessed us with shade, and lent maturity to our garden’ perfectly captures the book’s tone. Practical rather than theoretical, anecdotal rather than scholarly – these factors define its approach and probably readership. The images include some evocative family photographs, directing our attention to the use of such sources in tracing the history of Australia’s garden heritage.
Heritage Roses In Australia
Heritage Roses in Australia is a fellowship of those whose aim is to advance the preservation, cultivation, distribution, and study of old garden roses, including roses no longer in general cultivation, roses of historical importance, species roses and their hybrids.
Walter Burley Griffin Society
Established in 1988 in Sydney, the Society commemorates the lives and works of Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin and promotes the environmental ideals and community life they fostered in Australia.
Garden Literature Index
A comprehensive resource for gardening enthusiasts and professionals alike – available to libraries, corporations, institutions, government agencies (not to individuals)
The Colonial Plants Database
A database of plants known to be available in the colony of New South Wales up until the 1860s, compiled from Botanic Gardens records, nursery catalogues and manuscripts plant lists of colonists. From the Caroline Simpson Library of the Historic Houses Trust.
A combined searchable database linking and allowing access to the catalogues of the National and State Libraries around Australia.
State Library of South Australia
The State Library of South Australia has indexed newspapers and magazines on SA history, searchable by topic, such as gardens or parks.
Californian Garden & Landscape History Society
The California Garden and Landscape History Society aims to celebrate the beauty and diversity of California’s historic gardens and landscapes and to promote wider knowledge, preservation, and restoration of California’s historic gardens and landscapes.
The Garden Conservancy
The Garden Conservancy is a national non profit organisation, based in the United States, dedicated to preserving exceptional American gardens and opening them for public education and enjoyment
Historic Garden Foundation
The historic Gardens Foundation is a non profit organisation set up in 1995 to create links between everyone concerned with the preservation, restoration and management of historic parks and gardens, In addition it hosts an educational programme, journal and a biennial historic plant symposium.
The Olmsted Conservancy
The Olmsted Conservancy is an American site dedicated to the research and conservation of the legacy of the 'father of landscape architecture, of Civic Park design and creator of many of America's finest public parks, Frederick Law Olmstead. His work remains influential in Australia.