Ballarat Reform League Inc. Creswick Monument
On 18 October 2014 the Ballarat Reform League Inc. Creswick Monument was unveiled at Calembeen Park by Prof. Weston Bate.
In late October 1854, the road to the Government Camp at Creswick Creek was crowded with diggers so incensed by the oppressive license system and general injustice that they threatened to burn the Camp and demanded the removal of all officials.
The protest was quelled, but the anger returned on 25 November when delegates from Ballarat’s vigorous Reform League rode in to seek support for their democratic protest and their condemnation of officials. Four days later, about 2,000 men, from the population of 25,000, met at Long Point to promise support. Licenses were burnt and led by a German band, a contingent of about 150 set off for Ballarat travelling via Clarke’s Flat and Black Lead, encouraging fellow miners to join them.
Legend has it that some were caught in a thunderstorm at Mopoke and returned home. Yet it is recorded that about 500 Creswick men arrived at the stockade in Ballarat on 1 December 1854. The Ballarat Reform League, the pinnacle of goldfields unrest, was formed on 11 November 1854 to express great concern about the corruption, injustice and oppression of the Ballarat authorities. Its charter was a benchmark for democracy and its remonstrance a condemnation of official behaviour. It claimed a power ‘rested by God in the people’
The Creswick meeting on 29 November was a response to the decision of a Ballarat meeting to march led, by Peter Lalor, to Eureka with the Southern Cross flag, build a defensive stockade and stand up for their rights and liberties. They were no match for the Government forces who stormed the stockade and even massacred bystanders early on the morning of 3 December .
Creswick (including list of diggers known to have left Creswick to join the Eureka Stockade)