Conrick of Nappa Merrie

Conrick-of-Nappa-MerrieThis is the story of John Conrick, who as an eighteen year old from Tower Hill near Warrnambool assembled a mob of cattle and with others walked them to the Cooper Creek in Queensland.

He took up a selection of land known by the Aborigines of the area as “Gnappa Merri” (Water and Sandhill).

Nappa Merri became famous in Australian history as the location of the Burke and Wills expedition “Dig Tree” and the location where Wills passed away.

A man of incredible physical strength, Conrick persevered through droughts, floods and isolation to establish first a cattle station then, as markets changed he introduced sheep and wool to his activities, excelling in both. He owned and bred several racehorses

Conrick was the man who blazed and opened the now famous Strzelecki track which ultimately gave pastoralists access to the Adelaide stock markets.

His story tells of his first contacts with the native population. Nappa Merrie remains a model Coopers creek cattle station.

A true pioneer by any standard, this book by Helen Mary Tolcher is a fine easy to read history of a most intriguing part of Australia.

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