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Old 02-09-2017, 02:20 AM
Banksiaman Banksiaman is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Australia
Posts: 518
1857 was the midst of gold fever - the US goldfields still going strong, Australian ones were on the up and countless people who had probably never considered leaving their home town were suddenly crossing the globe to make their fortunes.

I've read plenty of stories written by those travellers, and their journeys were overwhelmingly dull. Occasionally ships got wrecked, but more usually ran into another boat in over-packed and poorly managed harbours, and people died on the roads, but mainly from a horse being spooked and dropping the rider, or an overloaded cart tipping over, than by cut-throats, banditos and bushrangers.

Although the really unlucky ones didn't get to write a memoir, the overwhelming impression is that most of the time most people were safe. The things that killed you were accidents, and with no first aid training or medical hygiene that was often a death sentence [this is just after the Crimean War with all of its medical horrors].