NORFOLK ISLAND (2020)-Blue Cow (2v)

Frequently bought together:


History: Descended from the bull Dr. Blue Suit brought to the island in the mid 1900's. So named for his distinctive colour, Dr. Blue Suit is thought to have been a Shorthorn-Angus cross. Cattle of the old English breeds had been brought to the island from 1790, in the various waves of settlement - indeed; the initial hope was the island would feed the new colony in NSW. During the 1790's many ships brought cattle from the Cape to Australia, some ships carried over 100 head per load - some of these cattle were sent to Norfolk - they were probably Afrikaners. Before long English breeds came out and were taken there.

In 1841 when the barque Hope called there, Captain Simpson reported several thousand cattle roamed the island. When the Pitcairners were allowed to settle on the island about 1855, there were three thousand sheep and many cattle (accounts vary from hundreds to thousands). They belonged to the government but were gifted to these people according to a letter from Captain Fremantle; disputed in 1867 by the Governor of NSW nonetheless the cattle were managed for the people as a community asset, apart from individually claimed house cows, by the resident teacher. These cattle were the old English breeds, probably mostly shorthorn, crossed to the African cattle. That year they sold several shiploads of cattle to New Caledonia. Cattle were regularly sold to visiting whalers for food. The proceeds of cattle sales were banked for all the islanders to share. To clear up the problem of who owned the cattle - government or islanders - Mr. Rossiter the English  teacher on the island, in that year (1867) suggested they be purchased from the government and a price of 3 pounds per beast was settled on. This suited everyone as the number of cattle had shrunk. In 1868 it was reported cattle numbered in the hundreds, excellent butter was made on the island and good cheese; this indicates cattle with high butterfat in the milk.

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