Blue Mountains

CHRISTMAS IN BLACKHEATH

CHRISTMAS IN BLACKHEATH

CHRISTMAS IS NIGH As Christmas approaches I love looking back at seasonal celebrations in my village of Blackheath. The following is from The Lithgow Mercury in 1909; There was very little stir here during Christmas, and everything passed off quietly. On Boxing Night a concert was held

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THE LITHGOW PRAM PUSHERS

THE LITHGOW PRAM PUSHERS

Dave McSorley was a  local barber in Lithgow. He was also a heavy-weight boxer, and consummate showman. He once wagered that he could clean shave  1,000 men without a break. In the end he ran out of  bristling chins, but still managed 420 shaves in 54½ hours,

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SORROW, STRIFE AND STEEL IN THE HEART

SORROW, STRIFE  AND STEEL IN THE HEART

BLAST FURNACE SPELLS START OF THE STEEL INDUSTRY On May 13 1907, the Lithgow Blast Furnace , built by William Sandford Ltd., was officially opened by the Premier of New South Wales, Sir Joseph Carruthers. It was essentially the birth of Australia’s steel industry, and a day

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RHODODENDRONS FOR REMEMBRANCE

RHODODENDRONS FOR REMEMBRANCE

During World War One, seventy seven  men from  the Blue Mountains community  of Blackheath   volunteered to serve.  Their names are engraved on the local war memorial. Six were killed in action; H. CULLEN, R. MURRAY, J. SKEEN, D. SPRAGUE, J. STEENSON, & R. THOMPSON.    

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The Waratah – history and folklore.

The Waratah - history and folklore.

 MOUNTAIN JEWELS The spectacular  waratah (Telopea)  is the state emblem of New South Wales, and  so much a part of the beautiful  Blue Mountains, where I live.  The plants flower  both in our gardens and in the local bush. They are part of our identity. In 1912,

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One Small Miracle – the Crimson Rosella

One Small Miracle - the Crimson Rosella

DISASTER! At three o’clock  one afternoon  this week my husband Rob called me outside. He looked very upset, and was holding a crimson rosella in an old towel. It had flown into one of the windows. We live in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, and

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THE BLACKHEATH BROOM MAKER

THE BLACKHEATH BROOM MAKER

In 1918 an article in The Sydney Morning Herald reported on brooms being hand-made in the Blue Mountains village of Blackheath; The brooms are manufactured under the most primitive conditions, the machine for binding them together being home-made, and it is contended by the maker that with

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FIRE, HEAT……AND A MYSTERY ‘EPIDEMIC’

FIRE, HEAT......AND  A MYSTERY 'EPIDEMIC'

A LONG, HOT SUMMER. It has been such a dry winter here in the Blue Mountains. We have already had one total fire ban day and it’s only September. I notice my husband quietly clearing undergrowth, and testing the petrol fueled water pump.  I’m glad he does

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THE SHOOTING OF DONALD BUNYAN

THE SHOOTING OF DONALD BUNYAN

On  the afternoon of August 18 1937, Mrs Dorothy Bunyan  of Lithgow attended a  funeral. It was a particularly  sad occasion; the child of Mr Brown,  of one of the  local  school teachers, had died. She hurried  home  because her nine year old son Donald was due home from primary school. 

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TRAIN ROBBERY ON THE BLUE MOUNTAINS LINE

TRAIN ROBBERY ON THE BLUE MOUNTAINS LINE

Shortly before midnight on Tuesday, April 8 1930,   what has been described as one of the most daring robberies in the history of Australia took place.    The  heist  was conceived by Roy Wilkinson, a 24 year old  railway porter. Wilkinson had been  serving as  escort on the mail train from Sydney to

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