Australia's Great Experiment WHEN Queensland and South Australia were set up there was a huge tract of intervening country which for long provided the delusive and romantic element in Australian land policy. This vast area of 355 million acres was always a tantalizing land, subject to conflicting reports, for nobody knew how much truth there was to the theory that the Northern Territory, as it was called, was merely the 'dead heart' of Australia. Even at the end of the century, this was summed up by the poet, who wrote:
'For to the north there lies a land
A great grey chaos, a land half made Where endless space is, and no life stirreth In the great lone land, by the grey Gulf Water.'