Australia is one of the most culturally diverse nations in the world. With such a broad range of influences, it’s not surprising that Australians throughout history have played such an important role in shaping our national identity.
Here at Clare Makes, all of our Australian candles are named for important Australian figures throughout history, and this article details some of the most significant historical figures who have left their mark on Australia. These are people whose contributions have had a long-lasting impact on our culture and way of life. From explorers to politicians, sports stars to scientists, these are just some of the many amazing Australians throughout history.
A Brief Look at: Henry Lawson, Writer and Poet
If you’ve ever heard the phrase “the bush is what we are,” you’ll know that it comes from a poem by Henry Lawson. If you’re not familiar with Lawson’s work, the bush is what we are is an iconic poem that has become an important part of the Australian identity. It captures the essence of the Australian identity and is often used to describe the Australian way of life. Besides being a great poet, Henry Lawson was a journalist, novelist, and short story writer who was very involved in political and social issues. He was heavily involved in the trade union movement, and he was even jailed for a period of time because of it. Lawson is a great Australian in history because he played a huge role in bringing the issues of the time to light. Australia’s issues at the time were vastly different than they are today, and Lawson’s work shed some light on them.
Our Henry: The Wattle candle celebrates the words of Henry Lawson through his poem, "The Wattle".
A Brief Look at: Louisa Anne Meredith, Tasmanian writer, illustrator & botanist
Louisa Anne Meredith is a Tasmanian author, illustrator and botanist who was also involved in the anti-slavery movement of the 1800s. Being an anti-slavery activist was extremely dangerous at the time, in part because people didn’t know how to address the issue. Meredith was one of the first people in Australia who made anti-slavery activism part of her daily life. She wrote about the issue and created paintings of the slaves and their living conditions, which helped to shed some light on the situation at the time. Louisa Anne Meredith is a great Australian in history because she was one of the first people to fight against an issue that desperately needed to be discussed. She was a pioneer in the anti-slavery movement and helped to pave the way for future activists.
A Brief Look at: Matilda (Tilly) Devine, Career Criminal
When you think of the Australian criminal landscape, there are a few names that likely come to mind, and often Tilly Devine's name comes up. This elusive criminal’s life was riddled with crime and scandal, but the highlight of her career came in the 1920s when she and her gang of women stole over $1 million worth of jewels from a baroness. Devine was a career criminal who was involved in all sorts of illegal activities such as robbery, theft, and drug dealing. She was imprisoned multiple times for her crimes, and she was even deported to the United States for a period of time. Devine was a great Australian in history because she challenged the idea that women were limited to domestic work. She showed that women were just as capable as men when it came to crime, and she paved the way for other women to challenge the limits placed on them.
One thing that these three great Australians in history have in common is that they all challenged the status quo. They were all involved in some pretty dangerous activities that challenged the social norms and ideals of their time. They made a mark on history, and their stories are worth learning about and remembering. You never know when learning about one of these great Australians in history will come in handy. After all, knowledge is power, and it’s always good to arm yourself with as much information as you can.