The Fremantle journal and general advertiser

The Fremantle journal and general advertiser

"The Fremantle journal and general advertiser" was the first newspaper ever published in Western Australia. It was edited and published by James A. Gardner, with the first issues appearing less than a year after the establishment of the Swan River Colony in 1829. As there was not yet a printing press in the colony, each issue was handwritten. Only a single copy of a single issue survives. Held by the Battye Library in Perth, Western Australia, it is copy number 5 of the issue of 27 February 1830. This is believed to be the date of first issue. It consists of a single sheet, and sold for one shilling and sixpence.cite journal | first = A. C. | last = Frost | year = 1830 | title = Early West Australian newspapers | journal = Early Days | volume = 9 | issue = 1 | pages = 77–87]

In addition, three issues survive of a manuscript newspaper published by Gardner under the title "The Western Australia gazette and general advertiser". It is unknown whether this is a different newspaper or the same newspaper under a new name. The three extant issues are held by the State Library of New South Wales, and are dated 4 April 1830, 1 June 1830 and 13 June 1830. They are larger, and sold for three shillings and sixpence.

The publication of "The Fremantle journal and general advertiser" was widely recognised as an important, albeit modest, step in the progress of the colony. The "Sydney Gazette" published a number of extracts from it, prefacing them with the comment quote|"It is interesting to witness the first dawn of literature upon yonder savage shores, and, though faint and feeble, we trust it will continue to brighten and to spread, until the light of science and morals be diffused over the whole surface of Western Australia.""Sydney Gazette", 29 April 1830, "p." 2.] ] It was even noticed by "The mirror of literature, amusement, and instruction", a London anthology.cite book | title = The mirror of literature, amusement, and instruction 16 | pages = 429–430 | year = 1830 | url = http://books.google.com.au/books?id=y7kRAAAAYAAJ]

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