In 1873 a boy in Launceston, a mayor's son, was playing with a pea rifle and accidentally shot himself.
His was one of many child deaths in Australia caused by firearms.
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Tasmanian author Nick Brodie unearths these historical deaths alongside the history of firearms in Australia in his new book Under Fire which attempts to remind Australians about the long-hard slog taken to create the necessary gun laws that exist today.
From the landing of Captain James Cook, which began with the firing of two shots and "several violent encounters with Indigenous peoples", to the pistol crisis in the 1920s, the Port Arthur massacre in 1996 and the innocent deaths of children, Brodie said this was an important story to tell.
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He said it was not just a simplistic story about the Port Arthur massacre occurring and the gun laws being fixed, but a story about Australia's relationship with guns that evolved from colonisation and continues today.
"The protection of children really underpins a lot of this Australian story. It is not just about criminals and big massacres it is about the everyday mishaps with guns that slowly taught us we need to be careful about who has access to them, where they can be used, and what guns should be in community.
"From the 1900s onwards there was a hell of a lot of accidents behind the scenes of children either shooting themselves or each other."
Brodie said a key part of the gun history was Australia's success at reducing the number of pistols in the community after world war one, and again, of fully automatic weapons after world war two.
This success was not replicated after the Korean and Vietnam wars, and semi-automatic weaponry such as that used in the Port Arthur massacre existed in the community.
"Port Arthur galvanised the politics of Australia but there were several massacres before that and a political movement already existed.
"Some states at some point were taking the lead in implementing gun laws ... but Tasmania was always last. It was never once the leader in the history of gun control in Australia and the slowest to act ended up with the worst massacre in Australia's history.
"Tasmania has a moral responsibility to never again be lax."
Tasmania has a moral responsibility to never again be lax.- Author Nick Brodie
Brodie said the National Firearms Act arrived after a long history with guns and is a very different gun story to that of America.
"No-one has the blanket right to have one and do whatever they want with it and there is a 200-year story that makes that very clear."
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