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Angus McMillan : 14-December-2011
Angus McMillan : 14-December-2011

Photographs supplied by Mark Riggs

A plaque and bas relief commemorate explorer and pioneer, Angus McMillan (1810-1865). 

Public interest in Angus McMillan and Sir Paul Edmund de Strzelecki was initiated in a 1920`s campaign to recognise the European explorers in Victoria, and a chain of commemorative cairns was erected across the region. McMillan’s contribution to the region was also conferred in naming the Federal Electoral Division of McMillan in 1948, which includes original lands of the Gunai Kurnai in west and south Gippsland.

The view of McMillan as heroic explorer and pioneer was disrupted in the late 1970`s when historian Peter Gardner highlighted the extent of the frontier conflict in Gippsland, naming McMillan as a key figure. The attack on the Brataualung camped at Warrigal Creek following the murder of Ronald Macalister in 1843 was the foremost of several incidents that resulted in the loss of Gunai Kurnai lives. Historian Don Watson named McMillan as the leader of the ‘Highland Brigade’, a group of Gaelic-speaking Scotsmen who conducted reprisals against the Gunai Kurnai.  The extent of McMillan’s leadership of these conflicts has been contested although his own accounts indicate that he was involved.

McMillan was responsible for raising fears of a European woman held captive by the Gunai Kurnai, firstly in 1840 and again in 1846 - 47. Little was made of the earlier claim, but in 1846 with the European population of Port Phillip District expanding and frontier conflict a matter of public anxiety, McMillan’s reports sparked a heightened reaction to the missing ‘White Woman of Gippsland’. Two search parties travelled throughout Gippsland, bringing much disruption and more violent deaths to the Gunai Kurnai despite there being no firm evidence of a kidnapping.

Location

Address:100 Foster Street (Princes Highway) , ESSO BHP Billiton Wellington Entertainment Centre , Sale, 3850
State:VIC
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -38.111758
Long: 147.065219
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Exploration
Monument Designer:Annemieke Mein

Dedication

Front Inscription

Angus McMillan 1810-1865.
Scottish Immigrant Famous As An Explorer, Pathfinder
And Trail Blazer. He Blazed Tracks Through East Gippsland
To Port Albert 1839-1841 In Search Of New Pastures And
A Sea Port.  Championed The Cause Of Scottish Settlers
Including Their Territorial Ascendancy Over Gippsland
Aborigines.  Occupied The Bushy Park Run Though He Did
Not Succeed As A Pastoralist. In 1864-1865 He Led
Expeditions To Open Gold-Prospecting Tracks In Alpine
Gippsland.
Bronze Design By Annemeike Mein

Source: MA,VMR,RHSV
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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