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Tony Rayner

Writer and historian


Image of writer Tony Rayner
Tony Rayner was born in Hobart in 1948 and educated as a mature-age student at the University of Tasmania by dint of Gough Whitlam’s beneficence. Previously he had worked as a public servant, travelled the world for two years and lived an alternative lifestyle halfway up a mountainside in the Huon Valley. He graduated in 1978 with Honours in History having studied under Michael Roe and Kay Daniels, two of Australia’s more significant academic historians. His first jobs following graduation were office work at Adult Education and a contract to write the history of the Cascades Female Factory. Each was to prove prescient: with over 25 years devoted to studying female convicts culminating in the publication of the comprehensive Female Factory, Female Convicts (Esperance Press, 2004) and almost thirty years taking phenomenally successful Adult Education historic walks of every area of Hobart. He constantly plots to live on Bruny Island, even if he has to live in a tent.

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Exterior of the Hobart Bookshop
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Hobart Bookshop


22 Salamanca Square, Hobart

a proud independent bookshop with an emphasis on Tasmaniana, poetry and literature.
Fullers Bookshop - Hobart
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Fullers Bookshop


131 Collins Street, Hobart

Established in 1923, it is one of Hobart's leading independent booksellers.