The outcast bastard son of an English Admiral, Harry 'Breaker' Morant found the wild frontier life of a drover in the outback beyond Bourke the ideal setting to act out the drama that boiled inside him. It spilled into reckless feats of horsemanship that made him a legendary figure in a world of tough men. Wild sprees in outback shanties, a string of lovers and a trail of unpaid bills, were symptoms of man in conflict with the world and himself.
Banjo Paterson, often his opponent in a Randwick steeplechase or a ferocious upcountry polo match, admired him as a nerveless rough rider and a peerless horse breaker. Harry wrote several letters to him from stations around Bourke detailing moments of bloody single combat with wild steers and boars.
The shrill call to War against the Boers in South Africa in 1899 seemed to offer Harry a chance for redemption- an opportunity to prove himself to his father by winning glory on the battlefield as a member of the South Australian Army. However the Establishment forces that he had fought so hard to break and tame, in the end proved too powerful, and on the 27th February 1902 Harry Morant was executed by the British Army on the charge of shooting Boer prisoners.
For more information please contact the Back O' Bourke Information and Exhibition Centre
Kidman Way, Bourke NSW 2840
02 6872 1321