History

YOUNG CASUALTIES OF WAR

YOUNG CASUALTIES OF WAR

The following  story is about my great-uncle Arthur, who I never met and barely knew existed during my childhood.  This was despite the fact that my father had been named in his honour.  Arthur  died when I was fifteen. He was buried in our local  cemetery, but 

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THE WARTIME SECRET OF THE GLENBROOK RAILWAY TUNNEL

THE WARTIME SECRET OF THE GLENBROOK  RAILWAY TUNNEL

SILENT WEAPONS OF WAR My research for this story began amid the startling news of the chemical attack on the Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, and of chemical weapons  being used in Syria. I knew about mustard gas in WWI, because my

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Miles Franklin’s Waratah Cup

Miles Franklin's Waratah Cup

MILES FRANKLIN AND HER BRILLIANT IDEA   Many literary figures of the day visited  Miles Franklin (1879-1954) at her home in the Sydney suburb of Carlton.  The author of the beloved book My Brilliant Career, referred to the house as, ‘My old humpy.’  A delightful custom  developed

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IN THE SHADOW OF WAR – THE EMPIRE GAMES OF 1938

IN THE SHADOW OF WAR - THE EMPIRE GAMES OF 1938

In  February 1938, 15 countries from what was then known as The British Empire, assembled in Sydney for what would be the last Empire Games until well after  the Second World War.  It was a huge occasion, especially as the event coincided with Sydney’s 150th anniversary. After

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BANK LOTTERY CATTLE BARON

BANK LOTTERY CATTLE BARON

A WINDFALL FOLLOWING ON FROM WHEN THE BANK OF AUSTRALIA WENT BUST In 1848 Angus McDonald from Bolwarra (near Maitland)  bought a ticket in  New South Wales’ first official  lottery.  It was held as a means of dispersing the assets of the failed Bank of Australia. The

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When the Bank of Australia Went Bust.

When the Bank of Australia Went Bust.

THIS STORY FOLLOWS ON FROM AUSTRALIA’S FIRST BANK ROBBERY At the beginning of March, 1841 there was a devastating fire at the Albion Mills, in Sydney’s Darling Harbour. The owners, Messrs Hughes and Hosking, were shipping agents and importers. Many Sydney  merchants  had produce stored at the

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THE IVANHOE HOTEL AND THE NAKED LADY

THE IVANHOE HOTEL AND THE NAKED LADY

The  New Ivanhoe Hotel stands on the Great Western Highway at Blackheath in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales.  It has changed very little over the years. There are still signs of its art-deco interior, albeit a bit faded.   A NEW ATTRACTION AT THE IVANHOE

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THE SS WARATAH AND THE CURSE OF THE EMPIRE HOTEL

THE SS WARATAH AND THE CURSE OF THE EMPIRE HOTEL

The SS Waratah disappeared without trace  enroute to London from Australia in July 1909.  The full story can be read HERE. Among the 211 passengers and crew  on board were six members of the  Bowden family, travelling third class.   Newspaper reports varyingly stated that Mr Bowden

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THE SHOW AND TELL EGG

THE SHOW AND TELL EGG

During the Christmas holidays in 1992, three primary school children  in Western Australia came across a giant, fossilized egg in the sand dunes  at Cervantes Beach.  Jamie Andrich  aged nine and his cousins Kelly (9)  and Michelle Rew (7)  had no idea of the importance of their

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THE MYSTERY OF THE WISHING TREE

THE MYSTERY OF THE WISHING TREE

In Sydney’s Botanic Gardens there is a very special Norfolk Island pine known as The Wishing Tree.   It is a replacement of the original, which was planted in the early days of the colony. A sign explains its history, and its association with Governor  Lachlan Macquarie’s

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