In August 1914 war broke out across Europe. Within months hundreds of men - 'enemy aliens' - were interned on Torrens Island, in the Port River estuary near Adelaide. Sailors taken off enemy ships, foreign nationals living in South Australia, and even some naturalised British subjects found themselves behind barbed wire.
Wartime censorship meant people outside knew next to nothing about internment or life in the camp. The camp commandant's brutal behaviour was revealed only years later.
Today, the observations of two internees survive in the diaries of professional boxer Frank Bungardy and the compelling photographs of Paul Dubotzki. These extraordinary sources, brought together in Interned, tell the little-known story of South Australia's 'enemy within' - a story as timely now as it has ever been.
Publisher: Wakefield Press
Trevor Grant, Bilbiofile wrote:
Such subversion makes this book fascinating, along with the biographies of several men held on Torrens Island that reveal the practice of deportation, separation from wives and children, sometimes forever, and men who surrendered themselves to internment because war had rendered them unemployable and they faced destitution.
Nic Klaasen, Flinders Ranges Research wrote:
An impressive exploration of an easily neglected dark but intriguing chapter in South Australia's history ... [The authors] have done their subject proud through their scholarly, ground-breaking research and the impressive presentation of illuminating photographs.
Ian Harmstorf, Journal of the Historical Society of South Australia wrote:
A lasting record of one easily neglected aspect of South Australia's experience of the Great War ... A story as timely now as it ever was.
Raelke Grimmer, Transnational Literature wrote:
For all those interested in the history of South Australia or the reaction of human beings to pressure, both internal and external, this book is one that will fascinate and reward from beginning to end.
Interned: Torrens Island 1914-1915 presents the reader with an otherwise hidden piece of South Australian history. Monteath, Paul and Martin respectfully capture the experiences of the internees through the internees' own eyes, shading in gaps with historical context to give the reader a rich understanding of the circumstances surrounding Torrens Island.