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Elizabeth Macarthur: A Life at the Edge of the World

Michelle Scott Tucker



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Text Publishing Company
02 April 2019
Biography; Biography: general
Shortlisted, Ashurst Business Literature Prize, 2018
Shortlisted, CHASS Australia Book Prize, 2019

In 1788 a young gentlewoman raised in the vicarage of an English village married a handsome, haughty and penniless army officer. In any Austen novel that would be the end of the story, but for the real-life woman who became an Australian farming entrepreneur, it was just the beginning.

John Macarthur took credit for establishing the Australian wool industry and would feature on the two-dollar note, but it was practical Elizabeth who managed their holdings—while dealing with the results of John’s manias: duels, quarrels, court cases, a military coup, long absences overseas, grandiose construction projects and, finally, his descent into certified insanity.

Michelle Scott Tucker shines a light on an often-overlooked aspect of Australia’s history in this fascinating story of a remarkable woman.
By:   Michelle Scott Tucker
Imprint:   Text Publishing Company
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 196mm,  Width: 129mm,  Spine: 25mm
Weight:   310g
ISBN:   9781925773736
ISBN 10:   1925773736
Pages:   384
Publication Date:   02 April 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Michelle Scott Tucker owns and operates a management consulting company, and lives on a small farm in regional Victoria with her husband and children. Elizabeth Macarthur is her first book.

Reviews for Elizabeth Macarthur: A Life at the Edge of the World

'Tucker expertly details the trials, tragedies and triumphs of the early settlement of NSW...This book is an important historical memoir documenting the incredible life of an Australian pioneer and her role as the matriarch of one of Australia's first agricultural dynasties.' * Countryman * 'This carefully researched history is a highly interesting read that highlights the importance of women in the settlement of New South Wales.' * Otago Daily Times * 'Tucker's great achievement is to have scraped back the familiar historical material to uncover a fresh and compelling portrait of Elizabeth Macarthur in her own words and the words of those who knew her.' * Australian * 'Finally, Elizabeth Macarthur steps out from the long shadow of her infamous, entrepreneurial husband. In Michelle Scott Tucker's devoted hands, Elizabeth emerges as a canny businesswoman, charming diplomat, loving mother and indefatigable survivor. A fascinating, faithful portrait of a remarkable woman and the young, volatile colony she helped to build.' -- Clare Wright 'An intimate portrait of a woman who changed herself and Australia...Michelle Scott Tucker makes Elizabeth Macarthur step off the page.' -- David Hunt * author of Girt * 'The triumphs and trials of Elizabeth Macarthur, a capable businesswoman and dedicated wife and mother, are given their due in this impressively researched biography.' -- Brenda Niall

  • Long-listed for CHASS Australia Book Prize 2019 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for Ashurst Business Literature Prize 2018 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for CHASS Australia Book Prize 2019 (Australia)

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