About the Book
Old Union is the life's journey of Sam and Emily Wright who become of age in the Great Depression. Sam as a boy walks 550 miles from outback New South Wales with a single obsession, to go to sea. The 1935 seamen's strike pits seaman against seaman, strikebreaker against militant, the strong against the weak, a futile struggle that will gut a union of seamen.
Sam matures in the turbulent years of war and the political upheavals dividing Australia. A coming of age in an era of persecution against political beliefs, union demonizing, and a working class demanding a fair share of a new and modern world.
To save a life Sam walks away from the sea, but never loses what beats in his heart, the equality of man and his right to a voice.
About the Author
Wayne Ward spent all his working life at sea, from deck boy to AB, bosun to Chief Integrated Rating. Ships with forests of gear, cranes, tankers, self-dischargers, dredges, ketches, bulk carriers and colliers. From his first ship he recognized the formidable strength and determination of the men he sailed with, these worldly men bound by a single bond- union. He became a committed unionist, delegate and lifelong advocate for equality and representation in the workplace. He married young and his three sons followed him to sea. Unlike their father, against great odds which showed their true mettle, all three achieved foreign-going masters certification.
Wayne is the author of The Last Seaman, 28men and The Chinese Seamen's Children. He and Heather live in Wangi Wangi on the shores of Lake Macquarie, New South Wales.