My Articles

THE DEVILISH MR DESIRE LA COURT

THE DEVILISH MR DESIRE LA COURT

Desire La Court arrived in Australia before the outbreak of WWI as George Ohl, from Frankford. Like so many others he was interned as an enemy alien, initially in Queensland, from where he escaped, and then at the huge Holsworthy camp in New South Wales. It was

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THE PERSIAN – PLAGUED BY TYPHOID

THE PERSIAN - PLAGUED BY TYPHOID

I hope this article unearths some Tasmanian descendants of the Persian migrant ship, or perhaps the relatives they left behind in Scotland. The Highland Clearances; what a heartbreaking episode in Scottish history. During the 19th century, destitute crofters were evicted to make way for large sheep runs.

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BURKE & WILLS …..THE PISTOL

BURKE  & WILLS .....THE PISTOL

Robert Hare Burke and William Wills; the ill-fated explorers who travelled north from Melbourne to the Gulf of Carpentaria in 1860/61. As we know, both men died from exhaustion and starvation on the return journey. There is a link to the full story of the expedition at

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JOHN WINTERBOTTOM – CONVICT TOWN CLERK

JOHN WINTERBOTTOM - CONVICT TOWN CLERK

John Winterbottom, born 1789, was a solicitor, town clerk and much respected Mayor of Stockport, Cheshire. He was also a founding partner in Stockport’s first bank. However, in 1839 he faced bankruptcy after a series of failed investments. His desperation led him to defraud a client, the

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FRANK WILLIAMS – AN ARTIST ABROAD

FRANK WILLIAMS - AN ARTIST ABROAD

‘The Anzac Artist’ was the name given to the brilliant, South Australian born artist Frank Williams. FOR PART ONE OF FRANK’S STORY, CLICK HERE. The Gallipoli veteran arrived in London in 1919, to further his career and to study in Paris. As a homosexual man, the opportunity

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A Melba Protégé – ‘Anzac Artist’ Frank Williams

A Melba Protégé -  'Anzac Artist' Frank Williams

In 1918 Nellie Melba provided the boost to the career of artist Frank Williams that he had always dreamed of. The Adelaide born Williams had been wounded at Gallipoli, and was discharged in 1916 suffering from paralysis and severe shellshock. Back in Adelaide he slowly regained his

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A QUEENSTOWN SCANDAL – FRIENDS IN NEED 😎

A QUEENSTOWN SCANDAL -  FRIENDS IN NEED  😎

Charlie Leeming, one of the smartest telegraphists in Tasmania, leaves Launceston to take charge of the Queenstown office. His co-workers packed him with lots of good wishes, travelling bag and rug of the very best. He will be much missed in Launceston. (The Clipper, Sat. Jul 23

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DOLLS’ HOUSES – RAISING FUNDS IN WWII

DOLLS' HOUSES -  RAISING FUNDS IN WWII

The three dolls’ houses in this story were raffled to support the Red Cross in sending comfort parcels to Australian prisoners of war. The first mentioned was constructed and designed by the Apex Club of Tasmania. The name ‘Young Bill’ was used in publicity material to represent

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BRIDGES BROS. & THE WILLOW STRIPPERS

BRIDGES BROS. & THE WILLOW STRIPPERS

Bridges Bros. was established in 1857 by English born Samuel Bridges, at 142 Elizabeth Street, Hobart. He produced all manner of wicker furniture, prams and baskets. Mr Bridges had learnt the skills of wicker weaving in Hereford, where he had grown up. There was an early setback

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Old Bell Hotel, Hobart; what a loss!

Old Bell Hotel, Hobart; what a loss!

Around 1830 the Old Bell Hotel was built at 132 Elizabeth Street, Hobart. The Old Bell became a mecca for 19thC literary tourists. It was believed that in 1870 Marcus Clarke wrote the notes for his 1874 novel, For The Term of His Natural Life in the

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