Pathfinders: A history of Aboriginal trackers in NSW


Michael talks with Professor John Maynard about his research and his book, and the remarkable work of trackers that grew out of traditional society and was sustained by the vast family networks that endure to this day.

‘The word tracker conjures images of the legendary Aboriginal bush experts responsible for bringing criminals to justice and finding people lost in the wild. Michael Bennett’s new book is a very welcome addition. The book charts an important though largely overlooked area of the country’s history. Aboriginal trackers hold a mythical yet obscure presence in the history of the continent. Bennett weaves back into the nation’s historical narrative these Aboriginal heroes and heroines.’ — Professor John Maynard

About the Author

Michael Bennett worked as a historian in native title from 2002 until 2017, preparing evidence and writing reports for claims throughout NSW. It was through conducting research for native title claims that he first realised the extent to which the NSW Police relied on trackers for their expert skill. He grew up in Dubbo where he first learned of the exploits of Tracker Alex Riley.

Presented by History Illuminated.

Books are available for purchase and signing.

Bookings essential.

Gold coin on entry.

For the safety and well-being of all participants safe-distancing and social gathering measures will be practiced and contact details for traceability in the future will be kept. All attendees will be reminded to follow safe physical distancing and health advice by keeping 1.5m apart, maintaining personal hygiene by regularly washing hands, and not attending if they feel unwell.




  • Saturday, 05 September 2020 | 02:30 PM - 03:30 PM


Warners Bay Theatre, Lake Street,  2282  View in Google Maps

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