Biraban assists Threlkeld to interpret in court cases

Biraban assists Threlkeld to interpret in court cases involving Aboriginals, and would have been sworn in as interpreter in his own right had the oath not precluded this. (Gunson, ADB Biraban) Biraban and Threlkeld were called upon in the cases including Charley August 1835, Jackey August 1835, Hobby and Maitland Paddy also in August 1835. (Supreme Court Information, State Records T40, T38, T41; in Blair, 2003, p52). Threlkeld records Judge Burton’s impressions of Biraban’s intelligence and demeanour during a court case in 1837: “With respect to the natives in civilization, I beg to state a fact which occurred…when I was required to attend the Supreme Court as interpreter, on the trial of an Aboriginal [Long Jack]; the dialect spoken by the prisoner, was different from that which I understood; and I could communicate with him only through an Aboriginal named M’Gill, who when questioned by Judge Burton, as to his knowledge of God – on the nature of an oath – of truth – and of future punishment; his replies were so intelligent, as to induce the Judge to enquire, if I had baptized him; to which I replied, that I had not…” (NSW Legislative Council, Votes and Proceedings 1834, in Blair, 2003, 52).