Modern historians have observed that Australia has few, or no ancient traditions, though traditions that are growing are nourished by inheritances from the old world. One of the most important social features, they point out, is the absence of a wealthy leisured ruling class, bred in an aristocratic tradition, attending to public service as well as to private interest. Such a group exists nowhere in Australia except perhaps in the imagination of idealistic conservatives. Perhaps the reason was preoccupation with their businesses and properties - for, according to a modern historian, there are few examples of great inherited wealth in a new country; but, whatever the reason, the "landed gentry" are conspicuous by their absence.
With sixth and seventh generations fast growing up, there will soon be a vast army of descendents of those old pioneers. Without being aware of it, they will be part of the process towards independence and national maturity that is still going on. Will they spare a thought for the pioneer ancestors whose struggles contrast so sharply with the comfort and convenience they themselves enjoy? Or will they perhaps wonder whether the stories of bushrangers at Burwood were really true?