History High Tales: Vanishing Acts

  • 16 Nov 2021
  • 4:30 PM - 7:30 PM
  • 338 Kent Street, Sydney
  • 4


  • Members receive 15% discount on full price.
    1 guest at member price.
  • Members receive 15% discount.
    Guests at full price ($65).

Registration is closed

Vanishing Acts 

Doors open at 4.30pm

Music by David Holberton 4.45pm-5.45pm

Talk by Max Burns-McRuvie 6pm-7.30pm

Join Max Burns-McRuvie for the untold stories behind two mysterious men who made their mark on 19th century Sydney before disappearing into thin air.

George Edwards Peacock

A gentleman convict, prolific landscape painter and the first professional weatherman of NSW (1840-1856) who vanished from Sydney one day after establishing a successful career as a man of art and science. Peacock’s story reads like a Greek tragedy. It is a story of love, ambition, art, scandal, redemption, crime and punishment that unfolded on the streets and shores of Sydney at the end of the convict era. While his time in Sydney remains frozen in over sixty delicate landscape paintings held by the State Library of NSW, Max’s presentation will unpack Peacock’s mysterious life-story and shed new light on his sudden disappearance from the colony he painted in vivid colour.

Hugh “Shepherd” McGregor

The first true discoverer of payable gold in Australia, McGregor was a mysterious man from the Scottish Highlands who tended a flock of sheep near Wellington NSW; sold his secret findings to a Sydney jeweller (1845 - 1850) and inadvertently triggered the Australian goldrush of 1851. This strange tale digs deeper into the history of gold in NSW than Mr Edward Hargraves would like us to delve, revealing a bizarre back-story to the well-known narrative and attempts to answer the question that many voices asked at the time: what ever happened to McGregor?


Guitarist David Holberton brings us an authentic and artful representation of Spanish Flamenco music.

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