Story: Popular music

'Digger's farewell'

'Digger's farewell', a song from the 19th-century goldfields, evokes the harsh life of a gold digger. Privations were many and rewards few, especially on a goldfield 'near tuckered out'. The anonymous digger of this song, which appeared in the Grey River Argus, had done his dash on the West Coast's Grey River and was off to try his luck in the goldfields of the Palmer River in Australia. 

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: E-395-033
Watercolour and pencil on paper by William Henry Speer

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

Sound file from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero (A young country/Reference number ID22439)

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How to cite this page:

Chris Bourke, 'Popular music - Early settlers, 18th and early 19th centuries', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 21 October 2021)

Story by Chris Bourke, published 22 Oct 2014