A. E. 'Darkie' Wallace who wrote under the name, 'The
Axeman', was an important 'Goldfields Bard'. Left an orphan at an early
age after the deaths of his parents Laura (Armstrong) and Alexander
Warren, his upbringing was supervised by his maternal grandparents who
had a large family of their own.
His birth name was Christopher Alexander Graham Warren,
but after moving to the goldfields he changed his name to Alfred Edward
settling at Meekatharra, in Western Australia's Murchison District,
Wallace worked in the timber industry from Serpentine to Collie and was
a champion axeman, log chopper, sleeper cutter and shingle splitter.
Described as a tall man with black hair and a black
moustache, he was also a cattle drover and shearer.
At Meekatharra he worked underground at the Kyarra gold
mine where he contracted a lung disease that later claimed his life.
He also worked at the Belele pastoral station.
Selected poems and stories written by 'The Axeman' were
published by the Telegraph Printing and Publishing Co. (Meekatharra)
under the title, Cobbers
of Mine and Other Poems, in
My thanks go to Helen Gray (nee Wallace) for the picture and for pointing me in the
right direction to get this info.