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Adam Lindsay Gordon has many legends and the Strathdownie legend is one which continues to this day. It was a verse, allegedly written by Poet Gordon when droving a mob of sheep near Strathdownie west of Casterton in Victoria and near the South Australian border.
It appears Gordon requested permission to camp his mob of sheep in a paddock of the Strathdownie Station, then owned by the McEachern family for the night. Permission was refused as the station owner had given the grazing rights to Cobb and Co for their horses. The next morning Gordon had moved on but had left a note written, according to the author Geoffrey Dutton, on the gatepost, it read thus:
Death and Damnation to Strathdownie Station,
May your water and grass grow scarce,
And as for McEachern,
The bastard wants fetching,
And shoving up Cobb and Co's arse!
Another source says it refers to Mr MacQuigan, the Manager of the Station for McEachern, it reads thus:
To Hell and Damnation to Strathdownie Station,
May your water and grass be scarce,
And as for MacGuigan,
The bastard wants friggin,
And shoving up Cobb and Co’s arse!
Lorraine Day in her book Gordon of Dingley Dell, there is another version:
To hell and damnation to Strathdownie Station,
May it want for both water and grass.
And as for Patsy McGriggin, that bugger needs friggin',
And shoving up Cobb and Co’s arse.
According to Geoff Dening, another version of the legend is that Gordon carved the verse into a tree at Strathdownie and the station manager had the tree cut down and burnt and that the verse used to reappear written in charcoal on fence posts at the station after that.