- THE DOROTHY HEWETT AWARD
C. Y. O'Connor: His Life and Legacy
Charles Yelverton O'Connor is a legendary figure in early colonial civil engineering. But the fame of his great works, particularly the Goldfields Pipeline Scheme, which brought water 560 kilometres to the desert Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia, has almost been matched by that of his enigmatic death.
C. Y. O'Connor by Tony Evans, introduces fresh research material in examining O'Connor's character, influences and background. Evans confirms his subject as a tragic genius whose works changed the face and fortunes of both New Zealand and Australia in the second half of the nineteenth century.
O'Connor's work, now revered and celebrated, was misunderstood and undervalued by by many of his contemporaries. Wounding criticism of the Goldfields Pipeline and libellous newspaper reporting aimed directly at O'Connor contributed much to the final crisis of this proud, deep-thinking, private man.
Praise for C. Y. O'Connor:
Congratulations to Tony Evans on a substantial contribution to the writing of Australian history…there is unlikely to be a better biography of C. Y. O'Connor.KIM BEAZLEY