The Dawn of a New Australia

A Federation WebQuest for Stage 5 Students

Understanding why the Australian colonies became a Federation in 1901

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In 1880 how did the colonies feel about becoming one big country? Were there issues which united them? Were there issues which divided them? Which colonies and individuals felt under pressure? Which colonies and individuals were pushing for Federation? This WebQuest will help you find out.

Below are the badges of each of the colonies. Since Federation they have been included on each state's flags. Look at how they have been made up and the dates they were devised. What does this tell us about the attitudes of the colonies?

This is the State Badge of New South Wales. It has the St. George Cross (St. George is the Patron Saint of England) on a white background with, what is believed to represent, the four main stars of the Southern Cross on each arm, and a gold lion in the middle. It was adopted on February 18, 1876. The badge is the copyright of the New South Wales Government
This state badge of Victoria has been in use since 1870 and shows the Southern Cross and one of the royal crowns, in this case, the St Edward's Crown. The badge is the copyright of the Victorian Government
The badge for Tasmania has been used since 1875. The lion represents connections to England. The badge is the copyright of the Tasmanian Government
The badge for Queensland is a Maltese cross with a royal crown in the middle. The style of crown changes with each monarch and is, in this case the Crown of St Edward. This has been the badge for Queensland since 1876.
The badge is the copyright of the Queensland Government
The state badge for South Australia was officially adopted in 1904, after Federation. It shows the piping shrike, or magpie, standing on a gum tree staff. It has no connections to England or Britain or the royal family because South Australia was settled independently. The badge is the copyright of the South Australian Government
The Western Australian badge was brought into being around the early 1870s. It shows the black swan on a yellow disk. The black swan was unique to Western Australia at this time. The badge is the copyright of the West Australian Government

This webquest has been developed by Jan Brady and Michelle Vaccarella, The Hills Grammar School, on behalf of the Discovering Democracy program of the Commonwealth Department of Education, under the auspices of the Quality Teaching Project, No. 3.
Macromedia Dreamweaver MX 2004, Macromedia Fireworks MX2004 and Adobe Acrobat have been used in the creation of this webquest.
© 2004 Jan Brady and Michelle Vaccarella