The Illustrated Diary of Duty & Occurrence

A book illustrated by Ted Lewis.

The Illustrated Diary of Duty & Occurrence


Policing in New South Wales is rich in history – a lot of that history is not recorded. The Diary of Duty and Occurrences was the book where police recorded their daily tasks and the incidents attended in the 1800s. A lot of these books have been destroyed over time, however some in Forbes were preserved.

To save a part of that history, well known Australian artist, Ted Lewis, has expertly captured stories of the real events from the Dairy of Duty and Occurrences between 1862 and 1865, as well as the tough conditions and even tougher regulations that police at the time had to work under, in a unique commissioned collection of paintings. Although it depicts incidents and locations around Forbes, it could represent any frontier area in New South Wales, and potentially Australia at the time.This collection was first exhibited at the Platypus Gallery in Forbes in February 2019 as the Heroes, Horses and Hardship exhibition but now has its home at the NSW Police Academy in Goulburn. 

The book The Illustrated Diary of Duty and Occurrences: Forbes Mounted Police 1862-1865 (third edition) (ISBN: 978-0-9945264-7-2) contains the complete Heroes, Horses and Hardship collection of 57 paintings. It is a full colour 66 page hardcover book, 33x28cm (13×11 inches), and available for $75 (plus $15 postage).

The full colour 18 page (A4) catalogue of the Heroes, Horses and Hardship exhibition (ISBN: 978-0-99405264-5-8) is available for $20 (plus $5 postage).

All profits from sales are donated to NSW Police Legacy, which support both serving and retired police officers in times of tragedy and need, and care for the wider police family when they are facing difficult times. 

To purchase either the book or catalogue, please email Daniel at