This anthology is a trove of impressions of Ballarat and its environs. The visitors come from all walks of life - journalists, politicians, royalty, actors, artists, and clergy including an Aboriginal evangelist. Many perspectives are represented including Indian, Canadian, American, Swiss, Hungarian, French, English, Welsh, Irish, Scottish, German, and Viennese. This is Volume One covering the decade from 1851 to 1861. Ballarat in its first decade as a centre of gold mining is very much the story of the invasion of the gold diggers, and the conflict at the Eureka Stockade in 1854. Aboriginal people are present in this anthology as the Wathawurrung Aboriginal people of the Ballarat district and the policing by the Native Police Corps are discussed by numerous writers.
This paper examines four northern Wathawurrung legends and beliefs that were associated with five landmarks within their country - Lal Lal Falls, Black Hill (Kirrit Barreet, near Gordon), Lake Burrumbeet, and Mt Buninyong and Mt Elephant (Derrinallum). The first two sites are associated with Bundjil, the creator spirit. Lake Burrumbeet concerns a 'witch-like' creature, and the final two sites were involved in major conflict that explaines their unique topographical characteristics. The northern Wathawurrung country is bounded by the Werribee River in the east; the Fiery Creek in the west; and the Great Dividing Range in the north.