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In 1818, Thomas Wells wrote the first work of general literature published in Australia, describing the life of British highwayman, convicted to Van Diemen’s Land; the bushranger Michael Howe (1787-1818). Howe and his gang plundered the New Norfolk and other early settled areas in Tasmania. Also included in this volume - Van Diemen's Land Warriors, the first verse published in Tasmania in 1827. This satire on the military forces for their failure to put an end to bushranging was suppressed by Government Order, and all copies burnt, except one. Both volumes were originally republished by historian, George Mackaness, who also introduces and contributes an essay on Mathew Brady (1799 – 1826) – not the first but definitely the last of the Tasmanian bushrangers.
* The early history of Tasmanian bushrangers, notably Michael Howe and Matthew Brady.