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SAMUELS, Lieut. Edmond. - An Illustrated Diary of Australian Internment Camps. By an Australian officer of the guard.

Sydney, Tyrrells [1919]. Small quarto publisher's illustrated wrapper; 52pp, numerous photo illustrations. A rather good copy. ¶ The Michelin guide to Australia's concentration camps. For the privileged internee the Belle Epoque did not end with the outbreak of war and their imprisonment. Samuels reviews Holdsworthy: "dozens of small cafes ... several theatres ... picture shows ... gymnastic halls, massage chambers, hot baths ... "; Trial Bay: "the finest tennis courts I have ever seen ... surfing, fishing, boating ... a concentration camp that undoubtedly must be one of the most comfortable in the world"; and Berrima: "a charming site for a concentration camp ... the best concentration camp to be found anywhere," where the internees built "rest houses" along the river bank and marvellous boats: hydroplanes, seaplanes, gondolas, submarines, steam tugs and a zeppelin. At the end of a parade of these boats a submarine attacked a boat which was "set alight and sunk, and the occupants swam to shore." The delights and privileges of being a prisoner of Australia, or more correctly a privileged prisoner of Australia. One captain drew £300 a month and even the drag for the carnival was unstinted: "Many were dressed in female clothes, carefully decked out ... even to wigs and expensive underwear". This may be unrelated to the "keen friendliness shown by many Australian girls who were visitors". I'm not sure whether Samuels was the scribbling pharmacist or the pharmaceuting scribbler. Following this debut book he penned some hit pop songs of the twenties, apparently had his musical produced in London by the distasteful Lord Sempill in 1935, knocked out a novel or two, some verse, and mopped it all up with his autobiography in 1972. His Sydney pharmacy, in Castlereagh Street, was touted as the haunt of visiting stars.
AUD 300.00 [Appr.: EURO 185.5 US$ 199.55 | £UK 163.25 | JP¥ 26091] Book number 10866

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