This is the first detailed account of the legendary 1891 strike, and is the result of thousands of hours in research and analysis of government, union and pastoral company records. Fiction is supplanted by fact in this reconstruction of the event, the people and the times.
Steven Svensen calls into question many accepted notions about the strike, arguing that politicians, media barons and the large station owners conspired to undermine the trade union movement and socialist ambitions of its leaders. He identifies the conspiracy ringleader and recounts the complex chain of events leading to the strike.
Subsequent events like the 1894 strike and the adoption of arbitration in 1907 provide comparisons. The relevance of the strike to contemporary issues such as contract employment is examined, along with the question of why it has taken 100 years for the truth to emerge.