The Red Chief

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The Red Chief
AuthorIon Idriess
Genrehistorical novel
PublisherAngus and Robertson
Publication date

The Red Chief: As Told By the Last of His Tribe is a 1953 book by Ion Idriess about Gambu Ganuurru or Red Kangaroo, a tribal leader in the Gunnedah region in the 18th century prior to European settlement.[1][2]


The young warrior Red Kangaroo becomes a chief of his tribe – the Red Chief of the Gunnedah district. His story is handed down through the generations of his tribe and given by the last survivor, Bungaree, to the white settlers of the district.


Bungaree reportedly told the story of the Red Chief to a police officer, Senior Sgt John Ewing in the early 19th century. Notes of this talk were taken by Ewin's son Stan and wound up in the possession of a historian, who sent them to Idriess, who decided to write the book.[3]


  1. ^ "TRIBAL NAPOLEON". The News. 61 (9, 436). Adelaide. 6 November 1953. p. 18. Retrieved 26 March 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
  2. ^ "NOVELS". The Argus (33, 447). Melbourne. 14 November 1953. p. 14. Retrieved 26 March 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
  3. ^ "BOOKS AND AUTHORS". Western Mail. 69 (3, 351). Western Australia. 21 January 1954. p. 40. Retrieved 18 April 2016 – via National Library of Australia.

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