A new book showing how the mystery behind the authorship of an antique hand-written French manuscript was unravelled, will be launched by Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO, Governor of New South Wales.
Written by the University of Newcastle's Emeritus Professor Ken Dutton OAM, A French General and A Scots Colonel details his intensive research into the history of the unique manuscript, housed in the University of Newcastle's archives.
The French manuscript consists of over 300 pages on military fortifications and the mapping of battlefields. But when turned upside down and opened at the other end, it is written in English and is the working diary of a settler near Port Macquarie in the second half of 1839.
Professor Dutton said when the manuscript was discovered in the University's archives in 2005, there was no indication in the text as to its authorship.
"Extensive investigation identified the author as General François Jarry, who had headed Frederick the Great's military school in Berlin. Jarry later fled to England and in 1799 founded a private college for army officers at High Wycombe, later to become the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst.
"Lieutenant C.G. Gray had probably acquired the volume while a student at High Wycombe in 1809 and brought it to Port Macquarie where he kept it as a diary."
Gray was born in Edinburgh in 1786 and fought Napoleon at Waterloo before settling in Port Macquarie, and later building himself a residence which he called Huntington House.
Gray later moved north where he became the Police Magistrate at Ipswich, and Queensland's first Parliamentary Librarian and Usher of the Black Rod in 1860. He died in 1873.
A French General and A Scots Colonel will be launched at the University of Newcastle by the Governor. Colonel Gray's great-great-great grandson Jonathan Hancock will attend.
Where: L326, Auchmuty Library, Callaghan campus
When: Thursday 18 October 2007 at 12.30pm for 12.45pm
Who: Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO, Governor of NSW and Emeritus Professor Ken Dutton, OAM