Tom Wills, pioneer of reconcilliation


Warning. This is the answer to a question about Tom Wills addressed to Chat GPT, an AI platform. Some of the details are wrong, see if you can pick them. I will fix this when time permits after a busy day.

Tom Wills was born on August 19, 1835, in New South Wales, Australia. He attended Rugby School in England, where he excelled in sports, particularly cricket. After returning to Australia, he played cricket for Victoria and represented the state in several matches.

In 1868, Tom Wills organized an Aboriginal cricket team that toured England. The team consisted of Aboriginal Australian players, and this tour is often referred to as the “Aboriginal cricket tour.” The tour had a significant impact on Australian cricket and the recognition of Aboriginal players.

The tour was a pioneering initiative, as it marked one of the first international cricket tours organized by Australia. The team played matches against various English county teams, and despite facing challenges such as racism and cultural differences, they achieved several notable successes. The tour helped to raise awareness of Aboriginal cricketing talent and challenged prevailing prejudices.

Tom Wills’s contributions to Australian cricket and his involvement in the Aboriginal cricket tour have made him a significant figure in Australian sporting history. However, it’s worth noting that Tom Wills’s life was complex, and he faced personal struggles. He tragically died by suicide in 1880 at the age of 44.

Comment. His personal struggle was probably Post -Traumatic Stress Disorder that contributed to his decline into alcoholism. As a young man he was travelling overland to Queensland in a family group when a wheel fell off a dray and he stopped with a companion to fix it while the rest of the group went on. Moving on, they found that the others, some 18 of his family were dead, killed by Aborigines who approached the party with their spears held by their toes.

He was allegedly involved in major reprisal raids. Whatever his role in that episode his later work with young Aboriginal cricketers is quite remarkable.

The legacy of Tom Wills and the Aboriginal cricket tour continues to be celebrated and recognized for its role in promoting inclusivity and diversity in cricket, as well as the broader development of Australian sports.

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OldOzzie
OldOzzie
June 22, 2023 10:59 am

Rafe

https://bard.google.com/

tom wills

Sure, I am referring to Thomas Wentworth Wills, the Australian sportsman who is credited with being Australia’s first cricketer of significance and a founder of Australian rules football.

Wills was born on 19 August 1835 on the Molonglo Plain near modern-day Canberra, in the British penal colony (now the Australian state) of New South Wales, as the elder child of Horatio and Elizabeth (née McGuire) Wills.

Wills was a talented sportsman who excelled at both cricket and football. He played cricket for the Melbourne Cricket Club and was a member of the first Australian cricket team to tour England in 1868. He was also a member of the first Australian rules football team, which played against a team of English cricketers in 1859.

Wills was a key figure in the development of Australian rules football. He helped to write the first set of rules for the game and was the captain of the first Melbourne Football Club team. He was also a passionate advocate for the game, believing that it was a uniquely Australian sport that could help to unite the country.

Wills’s life was tragically cut short when he committed suicide in 1880 at the age of 44. He was suffering from depression and alcoholism, and his death was a major blow to the development of Australian rules football.

Wills is considered to be one of the most important figures in Australian sporting history. He is credited with helping to shape the game of Australian rules football and with promoting the game to the wider Australian public. He is also remembered as a tragic figure whose life was cut short by his own demons.

Sources
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Wills

Tom Wills was born on August 19, 1835, in New South Wales, Australia

That’s correct. Tom Wills was born on August 19, 1835, on the Molonglo Plain near modern-day Canberra, in the British penal colony (now the Australian state) of New South Wales. He was the elder child of Horatio and Elizabeth (née McGuire) Wills.

Wills grew up in the bush on stations owned by his father, the squatter and politician Horatio Wills, in what is now the state of Victoria. As a child, he befriended local Aboriginal people, learning their language and customs. Aged 14, Wills went to England to attend Rugby School, where he became captain of its cricket team and played an early version of rugby football. After Rugby, Wills represented Cambridge University in the annual cricket match against Oxford, and played at first-class level for Kent and the Marylebone Cricket Club.

Wills returned to Australia in 1856 and settled in Melbourne. He quickly became involved in the development of Australian rules football, and was a key figure in the writing of the first set of rules for the game. He was also the captain of the first Melbourne Football Club team.

Wills’s life was tragically cut short when he committed suicide in 1880 at the age of 44. He was suffering from depression and alcoholism, and his death was a major blow to the development of Australian rules football.

Wills is considered to be one of the most important figures in Australian sporting history. He is credited with helping to shape the game of Australian rules football and with promoting the game to the wider Australian public. He is also remembered as a tragic figure whose life was cut short by his own demons.

Sources
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Wills

OldOzzie
OldOzzie
June 22, 2023 11:19 am

Rafe – https://bard.google.com/

tom wills aboriginal cricjet tour

Tom Wills was the captain and coach of the first Aboriginal cricket team to tour England in 1868. The team was made up of 13 Aboriginal men from the Western District of Victoria, and they played 47 matches against intermediate-level English amateur teams. The tour was a success, and the Aboriginal players were praised for their skill and athleticism.

Wills was a key figure in the development of cricket in Australia, and he is considered to be one of the pioneers of the game. He was also a founder of Australian rules football, and he is credited with introducing many of the rules and techniques of that sport.

The 1868 Aboriginal cricket tour was a significant moment in Australian history. It was the first time that an Australian sports team had traveled overseas, and it helped to raise awareness of Aboriginal culture and achievements. The tour also helped to promote cricket in Australia, and it paved the way for future international tours.

Here are some additional details about the tour:

. The tour was organized by Thomas Gibson Hamilton, a Scottish pastoralist who owned Bringalbert Station in the Western District of Victoria.
. The team was captained by Wills and coached by Charles Lawrence, an English cricketer who had played for the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC).
. The team played its first match on May 1, 1868, against the MCC at Lord’s Cricket Ground.
. The team played its final match on October 18, 1868, against the North of England XI at Headingley Cricket Ground.
. The team won 26 of its 47 matches, drew 12, and lost 9.
. The team’s highest score was 295, which they scored against the United South of England XI at The Oval.
. The team’s best bowler was Johnny Mullagh, who took 125 wickets at an average of 13.42.
. The tour was a financial success, and the players were well-received by the English public.

The 1868 Aboriginal cricket tour was a significant event in Australian history, and it helped to promote cricket in Australia and raise awareness of Aboriginal culture and achievements. The tour is still remembered today, and it is considered to be a landmark moment in the history of Australian sport.

tom wills aboriginal cricket tour

Sure, here is some information about the Tom Wills Aboriginal cricket tour, along with some images:

The tour was organized by Thomas Gibson Hamilton, a Scottish pastoralist who owned Bringalbert Station in the Western District of Victoria.

Thomas Gibson Hamilton, organizer of the Aboriginal cricket tourOpens in a new window
Western District Families
Thomas Gibson Hamilton, organizer of the Aboriginal cricket tour

The team was captained by Wills and coached by Charles Lawrence, an English cricketer who had played for the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC).

Charles Lawrence, coach of the Aboriginal cricket tourOpens in a new window
Deadly Story
Charles Lawrence, coach of the Aboriginal cricket tour

The team played its first match on May 1, 1868, against the MCC at Lord’s Cricket Ground.

Aboriginal cricket team playing against the MCC at Lord’s Cricket GroundOpens in a new window
Wikipedia
Aboriginal cricket team playing against the MCC at Lord’s Cricket Ground

The team played its final match on October 18, 1868, against the North of England XI at Headingley Cricket Ground.

Aboriginal cricket team playing against the North of England XI at Headingley Cricket GroundOpens in a new window
ABC
Aboriginal cricket team playing against the North of England XI at Headingley Cricket Ground

The team won 26 of its 47 matches, drew 12, and lost 9.

The team’s highest score was 295, which they scored against the United South of England XI at The Oval.

Aboriginal cricket team playing against the United South of England XI at The OvalOpens in a new window
Wikipedia
Aboriginal cricket team playing against the United South of England XI at The Oval

The team’s best bowler was Johnny Mullagh, who took 125 wickets at an average of 13.42.

Johnny Mullagh, best bowler of the Aboriginal cricket teamOpens in a new window
SBS
Johnny Mullagh, best bowler of the Aboriginal cricket team

The tour was a financial success, and the players were well-received by the English public.

The 1868 Aboriginal cricket tour was a significant event in Australian history, and it helped to promote cricket in Australia and raise awareness of Aboriginal culture and achievements. The tour is still remembered today, and it is considered to be a landmark moment in the history of Australian sport.

There are 2 other drafts with additional images

Salvatore, Understaffed & Overworked Martyr to Govt Covid Stupidity

The above is a slightly different account (from anything I’ve ever heard before) of the Cullin-la-Ringo massacre.

Muddy
Muddy
June 22, 2023 2:29 pm

Cripes.
I’d heard the name ‘Wills’ in relation to the VFL, but was unaware of the ‘Cullin-la-Ringo’ massacre in which a number of articles on Trove gave 19 murdered, including five children.

17th October, 1861.

Muddy
Muddy
June 22, 2023 3:00 pm

As always, there are various versions, some possibly dubious.

Muddy
Muddy
June 22, 2023 3:30 pm

The massacre and others in the region, were written about in a paper (pdf format) for the Journal of the Royal Historical Society of Queensland.
Reading the references, one wonders about the accuracy of some of the content, and I also wonder if some of the claims of the numbers of aborigines killed in reprisals might have been exaggerated by the Caucasians themselves?

Boambee John
Boambee John
June 22, 2023 4:35 pm

Muddysays:
June 22, 2023 at 2:29 pm
Cripes.
I’d heard the name ‘Wills’ in relation to the VFL, but was unaware of the ‘Cullin-la-Ringo’ massacre in which a number of articles on Trove gave 19 murdered, including five children.

17th October, 1861.

All part of the Frontier Wars. Henry Reynolds will be able to “prove” that no whites were killed, but over a thousand indigenes were. Lyndall Ryan will “estimate” at least ten thousand indigenous dead.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 22, 2023 4:54 pm

Lyndall Ryan will “estimate” at least ten thousand indigenous dead.

The fact that there has never been any forensic evidence of any such slaughter doesn’t deter anyone. The most notorious case was “Forrest River” in the Kimberly’s of Western Australia, where “Maybe two, maybe three hundred blakfellas” were said to have shot and burned, by a police party in the 1920’s. All the evidence amounted to was a few shell casings from a non – police issue rifle, some bones no – one was prepared to identity as human, and a couple of campfire sites, big enough to “boil the billy” for a cup of tea.

Ed Case
Ed Case
June 22, 2023 8:33 pm

What’s happened is that the Cullin-a-ringo Massacre, which happened near Springsure in 1861, is confused with the Hornet Bank Massacre, which happened near Taroom in 1857.

Mrs Fraser’s son was notorious for murdering Aborigines for many years after, I read that he shot an Aboriginal woman dead in Toowoomba in the 1880s because he claimed she was wearing his mother’s dress.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 22, 2023 9:41 pm

Mrs Fraser’s son was notorious for murdering Aborigines for many years after, I read that he shot an Aboriginal woman dead in Toowoomba in the 1880s because he claimed she was wearing his mother’s dress.

His mother and sisters had been raped by the blaks, murdered and their bodies mutilated. What was he going to do, ask them to sit down and join him for a cup of tea?

Ed Case
Ed Case
June 23, 2023 8:18 am

His mother and sisters had been raped by the blaks, murdered and their bodies mutilated. What was he going to do, ask them to sit down and join him for a cup of tea?

He murdered that woman 28 years later, Toowoomba is hundreds of miles from Taroom, and in the meantime he’d murdered thousands of Aborigines, from Rockhampton to Maryborough and out to past Roma.
He was a cold blooded mass Murderer.
The Hornet Bank Massacre was a reprisal for Hornet Bank station hands on horseback riding down and raping Aboriginal women and girls.
You seem to be saying that non Aborigines raping Aboriginal women should get a free pass?
Like old Fraser.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 23, 2023 4:34 pm

and in the meantime he’d murdered thousands of Aborigines, from Rockhampton to Maryborough and out to past Roma.

Bullshit. Read your own link.

The Hornet Bank Massacre was a reprisal for Hornet Bank station hands on horseback riding down and raping Aboriginal women and girls.

More bullshit. The Hornet Bank Massacre was a reprisal for the Native Police unit camped on the station, using the local Aborigines as servants, and “making free” with their women.

“Inside the Killing Fields, Hornet Bank, Cullin la Ringo & The Maria Wreck” by Paul Dillon, Pages 20 -26.”

Ed Case
Ed Case
June 23, 2023 5:12 pm

The book is crap.
Even the lowest estimate of Murders by the Native Police in Qld is 41,000 and William Fraser was a cold blooded murderer who woulda been hanged in a civilised country.

Dot
Dot
June 23, 2023 5:33 pm

He is also remembered as a tragic figure whose life was cut short by his own demons.

They couldn’t win back then either?

Kingsley
Kingsley
June 23, 2023 6:17 pm

Are there any reputable estimates of what Aboriginal populations where in each State at settlement?
Claims of tens of thousands of Aboriginals being killed seems improbable to me. If our total population at start of WW 1 was only 5 million with all the benefits of industrialisation and modern agriculture then it strikes me a population living a basic semi nomadic lifestyle would be a couple of orders of magnitude less than that, which means in order to kills tens of thousands of Aboriginals in Queensland alone seems pretty unlikely to me.

Ed Case
Ed Case
June 23, 2023 7:22 pm

How many Aborigines were there in Queensland?

Well, how much grass was there in Queensland?
Roos and Wallabies eat grass, Aborigines ate Roos and Wallabies, those were free for the taking.
The Aborigines were killed for their land, which was used to graze sheep.
How many sheep?
About 20 million.
How long had they been there?
Liars say 65,000 years, realists say >2,000 years.
Reports from the Native Police can be found, adding it all up comes to 41,000, then there were squatters like John Marks, who had his own private army out on the Mackenzie River, how many he and others like him butchered can never be known.

Boambee John
Boambee John
June 23, 2023 7:47 pm

Ed Casesays:
June 23, 2023 at 5:12 pm
The book is crap.
Even the lowest estimate of Murders by the Native Police in Qld is 41,000 and William Fraser was a cold blooded murderer who woulda been hanged in a civilised country.

Estimated by Henry Reynolds or Lyndall Ryan?

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 23, 2023 7:58 pm

Even the lowest estimate of Murders by the Native Police in Qld is 41,000

Reference?

Boambee John
Boambee John
June 23, 2023 8:56 pm

Zulu

Turd Case has read every patrol report by the Queensland Native Police, and tallied the score (or, more likely, he is quoting from “reliable” academics like Reynolds and Ryan).

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 23, 2023 9:13 pm

(or, more likely, he is quoting from “reliable” academics like Reynolds and Ryan).

Interesting, Reynolds himself admits that the figure he quotes of 20,000 Aborigines murdered by the settlers, is just a guess..reliable academics…

Muddy
Muddy
June 24, 2023 8:39 am

Imagine the casualty claims as potentially having arisen via a process akin to money laundering: Find an anecdote, have a PhD student ‘wash’ & publish it, a media outlet or taxpayer funded indig org does the same, & then an established author gives it the last rinse in wide-spread print. The previously suspicious anecdote comes out of the machine shining as incontestible proof.

Boambee John
Boambee John
June 24, 2023 8:46 am

Zulu Kilo Two Alphasays:
June 23, 2023 at 9:13 pm
(or, more likely, he is quoting from “reliable” academics like Reynolds and Ryan).

Interesting, Reynolds himself admits that the figure he quotes of 20,000 Aborigines murdered by the settlers, is just a guess..reliable academics…

Pushed into a corner once, with respect to some of her more dubious statistics, Ryan effectively admitted that historians can make numbers up.

Ed Case
Ed Case
June 24, 2023 10:05 am

Interesting, Reynolds himself admits that the figure he quotes of 20,000 Aborigines murdered by the settlers, is just a guess..reliable academics…

Source?
Or you’re lying [again].

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 24, 2023 10:11 am

Source?
Or you’re lying [again].

“The Myths of Frontier Massacres in Australian History” by Keith Windschuttle, Quadrant, November 2000, page 20.

Boambee John
Boambee John
June 24, 2023 3:51 pm

Ed Casesays:
June 24, 2023 at 10:05 am
Interesting, Reynolds himself admits that the figure he quotes of 20,000 Aborigines murdered by the settlers, is just a guess..reliable academics…

Source?
Or you’re lying [again].

Source for your hysterical claims of yesterday, and you are still lying even if you do provide a source.

Muddy
Muddy
June 24, 2023 7:55 pm

Colonial massacres.

Where does one start?
Perhaps a Cat with knowledge of formal research methodology could examine this project and write a post?

Muddy
Muddy
June 24, 2023 8:04 pm

From the above link:

For this reason, the most reliable [my bolding] sources of evidence are often found in secondary sources, long after the event, when fears of arrest or reprisal have long passed.

Conversely, is it possible that the gaps in memory are filled with something other than their direct experience? We all know that the passage of decades sharpens memory, right? Certainly, memory of acute trauma will remain, but will it remain accurate?

No-one ever big-notes themselves either, do they?

It is not impossible for guilt or shame to be relieved a long time after the event which triggered them, however even I can envision problems with relying on these anecdotes, which is what they are.

Muddy
Muddy
June 24, 2023 8:13 pm

Australian newspapers on Trove comprise the major source for the project. … Newspapers often provide the first reports of a frontier massacre and provide reports of official inquiries into a possible massacre. They can also provide many decades later, the voices of the attackers and survivors, who tell their story, long after the event.

Oh dear.
Relying on the press.
The press which has ALWAYS been accurate.
By the way, how does the reader know that the person whose story is being told, decades later (or even a year or two later) was either an ‘attacker’ or ‘survivor’?

A university paper which I referenced somewhere above, referred to the recollection of a Qld indigenous bloke, in his 40s or 50s, who had apparently been an ‘attacker’ in the Cullin La Ringo massacre of Europeans when he was in his early or mid 20s.
What was the average life span of a man in his circumstances in those days? How do we know this man had been alive back then, even less participated in the mass murder of unarmed Europeans?

We don’t know that.
But apparently the Uni of Newcastle is very confident of their researchers’ use of Trove.

As I wrote last night: Some of this seems akin to money laundering; scrubbing problematic memories until they glisten.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 24, 2023 8:45 pm

however even I can envision problems with relying on these anecdotes, which is what they are.

Cite you two incidents from Western Australia – the “eyewitness” who “bin see the fires, and count the bodies, and see the white police come out of the bushes’ was eighty miles away at the time and “Oh, no, we bin talk about it”, and the individual who the “eyewitnesses” described as “leading the party down to the blakfella’s camp, and they shot them, just the way you’d shoot a dog” had been dead for two years at the time. Either the whole truth is told, or none at all.

Boambee John
Boambee John
June 24, 2023 8:55 pm

Muddy

Windschuttle’s work on the subject (three books, IIRC) is excellent, particularly for its dissection of the dubious work of the aboriginal “industry”, notably by Reynolds and Ryan.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 24, 2023 9:03 pm

Windschuttle’s work on the subject (three books, IIRC)

Windschuttle was writing a book on “The Fabrication of Aboriginal History’ on the theme of the ‘Frontier massacres.” but I don’t know that it was ever published. He did write three articles on that issue, which were published in “Quadrant ” magazine, back in 2000, and which I cited above.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 24, 2023 9:25 pm

This is an issue in this district, at this time. The local “activists” are claiming the pioneers of the district murdered a group of Noongar women and children. The descendants of those pioneers are demanding something more substantial then “stories my Nanna told me” before regarding their ancestors as murderers.

Muddy
Muddy
June 24, 2023 9:54 pm

B.J.
I read the first of his books and found it fascinating. It was a turning point for me.

I’ll have to track down a copy of the other volumes.
Thanks for the reminder.

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
Zulu Kilo Two Alpha
June 25, 2023 1:16 pm
Dot
Dot
June 25, 2023 1:22 pm

Zulu Kilo Two Alpha says:
June 24, 2023 at 9:25 pm

This is an issue in this district, at this time. The local “activists” are claiming the pioneers of the district murdered a group of Noongar women and children. The descendants of those pioneers are demanding something more substantial then “stories my Nanna told me” before regarding their ancestors as murderers.

Who cares? It happened, what, 140+ years ago? You can’t really prove anything and civilised people do not believe in the attainder of blood.

Chris
Chris
June 25, 2023 1:32 pm

ZK2A, Tony Thomas wrote ‘The Pocket Windschuttle’ so mortals could access that magisterial work. It was entirely published in a series of Quadrant articles too.

Chris
Chris
June 25, 2023 1:38 pm

Who cares? It happened, what, 140+ years ago? You can’t really prove anything and civilised people do not believe in the attainder of blood.

When the institutions train the young to value lies and emotion over truth, and convict living people for falsely rumored, or imagined crimes by other people’s great-grandfathers, we ought to care.

Muddy
Muddy
June 25, 2023 5:00 pm

Thanks, Zulu and Chris.
I think I was subscribed to Quadrant at the time, but these things bear re-reading.

Muddy
Muddy
June 25, 2023 5:11 pm

I’m only part of the way through Zulu’s first link, and wow …

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