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The Victorian Exploring Expedition left Royal Park, Melbourne on Monday 20th August 1860. Originally intending to leave at 1.00 pm, it was 4.00 pm before the party got away. Dr Eades, Mayor of Melbourne, mounted one of the drays and made a speech.


Dr Eades, Mayor of Melbourne:

Mr Burke, I am fully aware that the grand assemblage, this day, while it has impeded your movements in starting, is at the same time a source of much gratification to you. It assures you of the most sincere sympathy of the citizens. (Hear hear), I will not detain you; but for this great crowd, and on behalf of the colony at large, I say - God speed you ! (Cheers).

His worship the Mayor then called for three cheers for Burke, then three cheers for Mr Landells and then three cheers for the party as a whole. Mr Eades then said;

God speed and bless you !

...to which Robert O'Hara Burke replied;

Mr Mayor, On behalf of myself and the expedition, I beg to return to you my most sincere thanks. No expedition has ever started under such favourable circumstances as this. The people, the Government, the Committee - all have done heartily what they could do. It is now our turn, and we shall never do well until we entirely justify what you have done in showing what we can do (Cheers).

The band struck up 'Cheer boys, Cheer' and the party headed northwards in the direction of the Sarah Sands Hotel before turning and traversing the whole length of the Park to the south gate and passing then round the cattle yards, the camels' manure pile and then past the swamp and out of the South Gate onto Flemington Road then Mount Alexander Road towards Essendon.


Listen to 'Cheer Boys Cheer'

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