Making Pain Pay
The 'Jail Journal' of J. M. Drew
Ed by Andrew Gill.
ISBN 978-0-85905-585-7, (New 2015), Soft Cover, A4, illustrated, 87pages, 255 grams,
$25.00* + POST
In 1895, J M Drew, editor of the Geraldton Express was sued for libel by the local medical officer. While the libel trial was in progress, Drew committed a contempt of court and was gaoled for two weeks in the Perth Waterside Lockup.
On his return to Geraldton he published his so-called Jail Journal, a record of conversations with the other inmates of the Lockup including two drunks drying out and the colonial hangman. He recorded their memories of the convict era of Western Australia. He took the opportunity to portray himself as a heroic victim of injustice, a principled journalist and a fearless defender of democracy.