on Progress was published in 1866 by James
Bowes & Sons. Charles Fenerty wrote this
while he was in Australia. Fenerty notes at
the beginning of the poem that he originally
planned to have it published in Australia but
didn’t because he had a business opportunity
in New Zealand. He left Australia for New Zealand
in the hope of starting a sheep farm. He wrote
to his brother Wellington asking if he would
join him. Wellington was married and couldn’t.
Fenerty soon returned to Halifax to marry Anne
Hamilton. Everyone was happy to see him again.
The Halifax Citizen newspaper, on August 30th
1866, wrote that they were happy to have Fenerty
back and the poem he just published. And that
they hope that he’ll continue with his
poetry (which he does).
poem is a glimpse at what man has achieved so
far (up to the mid-1800's). Though the poem
is about world history (Western for the most
part), there seems to be more attention given
to the offspring’s of England (mainly
Australia and Canada). In the final stanza he
long, dear England, may thy off-shoots be,
A reflex of thyself, and knit to thee ;
Their pride, while peopling realms from pole
Thy laws and language still pervades the whole.