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Showing posts from August, 2011

CANBERRA'S HISTORIC CHURCH

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More an article about the 19th century history of Canberra, the main families and then St John's Church in the modern day Canberra suburb of Reid. The article also describes the history of the Churches oldest headstone , Sarah Webb. St' John's church recently experienced an attack of vandalism which damaged quite a few historic headstones. I must find out if Sarah's was damaged...

The Brisbane Courier - Saturday 5 February 1927


National Library of Australia
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A GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF THE TERRITORY

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This is the first time I have come across this publication in my Canberra based searches of Trove. Just as the title suggests... an old, or early depending how you look at it, general description of the territory of which there were a few about this time. I did however like one quote about Paddy's River:

"To this place the enamoured may bring his sweetheart, the angler his rod and line, the poet his notebook, the artist his palette - they will not regret it."

Canberra Illustrated: A Quarterly Magazine - Sunday 1 November 1925



National Library of Australia
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GUDGENBY RIVER BRIDGE VIDEO

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Stopped by at the Smith's Road Bridge over the Gudgenby River today to see the recently installed temporary Bailey's Bridge in operation. The portable military bridge was installed to replace the old low level bridge washed away in the 2010 Canberra floods...


Slight confusion in my memory in the video.The burials I refer to were actually at the Nass River Bridge a short distance away. Two clippings -  Pioneers Graves Nass Bridge 1 and Pioneers Graves Nass Bridge 2.

I have posts showing clippings from the Gudgenby bridge's Grand Opening, what the 1930's bridge looked like, what it looked like after the floods and subsequent installation of the Bailey's Bridge. Finally just because it demonstrates a Federation era attitude pretty well a tale of shooting 'Golden' Eagles nearby...

And for anyone unaware I am exploring the possibilities of YouTube. I have a channel here

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FISHING FOR DINGOS VIDEO

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From what I can gather from historical records of the Canberra region it was an area abundant with native species. By far more than today. Our impact over the first 100 years saw the decimation of species such as the tiger cat with the Brushtailed Wallaby and Koala hunted to extinction. I am sure wild dogs had their impact as well.

Dingos were a particular problem with complaints dating to the 1830's with Shepherds continuously on guard on any flock. They were the bane of landowners and at Lanyon convicts were flogged if a dingo killed stock under their care.

From a post Lanyon Cemetery relating to 1837 -
'Oral tradition suggests that William Wright's was the first grave, and that the coffin had to be weighed down with large stones to protect it from attack by dingos (native dogs).


Some video I took on a walk up Simpson's Hill...



The Queenslander - 6 June 1929



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GIBRALTAR FALLS VIDEO

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Some video I took today on a trip out to Gibraltar Falls. Gibraltar Creek rises above the snowline and flows down till it meets a gorge at the falls. It's an impressive and very beautiful natural feature in the ACT well worth a visit or re-visit if it has been a while.

But that was not the reason for my visit. I was making a reconnaissance, as the daffodils appear to be blooming, of an early spring appearance of the Waterfall Redspot Dragonfly (Austropetalia partricia). A rare little beast who's habitat is the splash-zones of waterfalls.

I'll begin with a newspaper clipping from the Queanbeyan Age dated Thursday 30th November 1871 describing the discovery of the falls...

National Library of Australia

And a wander round...

MAP

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For more detailed information and photos I have an older post here.

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CANBERRA WANTS THE VOTE

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Hard to imagine today but even as a man who has lived in a Canberra before self government it is difficult to comprehend having no voting rights in your country of birth at all. Probably not widely known but when the new Federal Capital of Australia was founded in 1913 apart from the population being made tee-total it was decided that the inhabitants of the new territory would be denied suffrage as well...

Us Canberrans should today appreciate Dr Lewis Nott's tenacity over 20 years in securing the vote for Canberra. He started his crusade in 1927 when Parliament officially transferred from Melbourne to Canberra. Call the new ACT legislative assembly sky-bridge after him I reckon.

I pick up the story 15 years later when Nott starts getting some influential support...

The Canberra Times - Saturday 13 June 1942

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But Canberra citizens didn't want to be like the Northern Territory...
The Argus -  Wednesday 11 September 1946

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4 ye…

MYSTERY RADIO IN MOLONGLO RIVER

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Strangely for a Canberra based blog I have very little interest in the history of Canberra's federal political goings on but found this article interesting. The 'mystery' discovery of what I imagine must have been a very expensive long range radio dumped in the Molonglo River...

The West Australian - Thursday 29 April 1954

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But it gets more exciting there are pistol parts found too...
Townsville Daily Bulletin - Thursday 29 April 1954

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The discovery was made at the height of the Cold war era Petrov spy scandal of 1954, known in Australia as the Petrov Affair. The result of the 'affair' was the expelling of Australian diplomats from the old Soviet and their embassy here recalled. Perhaps with the public mood of the time assigning ownership to the Russians was probably a given...

The Mercury - Thursday 29 April 1954

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But alas for all the excitement things weren't as they seemed appare…

BRAYSHAW'S TERRITORY

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A video by John Evans of the Canberra Bushwalking Club of Brayshaw's Territory.

"Visit many of the sites of European Settlement in the Nass Creek valley. Around 27km and 250m climb, mostly on fire trails." Walk information (John's site).

I take every opportunity I can to let everyone know about John's experience and dedication to community bushwalking in the Australian Capital Territory. There aren't many people with as much knowledge. If you are interested in bushwalking in the ACT & surrounds pretty much anywhere of interest can be found on John's blog.

For more videos of th his YouTube channel has many short videos showing 360 degree views in most cases to some pretty amazing mountain scenery.


Now that was a mountain run I reckon...
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LAMBRIGG - THE ESTATE OF W.J. FARRER

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Just out on the Tidbinbilla Road not far from Tharwa is an historic property that was the base for research that effectively saved Australia's wheat industry at the end of the 19th century. The new strains developed there effectively increased the World's wheat production.

This old clipping details the Canberra property 'Lambrigg' and it's world famous scientist William Farrer a pioneer who's wheat breeding experiments (hybridization) developed strains of wheat that boosted world production enormously.

The article describes the homestead, Farrer's laboratory, his interest in developing the Eden-Monaro region as the location for Australia's new national capital and a brief biography of his life...

The Sydney Morning Herald - Saturday 26 May 1934

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William and his wife are buried on a hill at Lambrigg and a memorial was erected. Lambrigg is a working property today and the memorial is closed to the public...

The Sydney Morning Her…

WALK OF THE TUGGERANONG BOUNDARY WALL

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Stretching its way west from the Tuggeranong Town Centre to the Murrumbidgee River is a 19th Century rural field stone wall that once separated Campbell's Yarralumla station from Cunningham's Tuggeranong. The wall is a reminder to me of Canberra's rural origins and of the resourcefulness and hard work of the men and women who first settled in the area.

This is some video I took today on a walk of the Tuggeranong Boundary Wall...


For additional information Tuggeranong boundary wall and A walk down Tuggeranong Creek.
ACT Heritage Register entry.

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A COAT OF ARMS FOR CANBERRA

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This is the story of Canberra's Coat of Arms from the conclusion of  a design competition in 1927 which drew 35 entries, through a vague selection process, to an eventual winner. Some very good Canberra trivia questions contained within...

A story of disappointment, heraldry and Australian controversy culminating with an altering of the meaning of Canberra's motto.

'Pro rege lege et grege' which had officially read in Latin 'For the King the Law and the People'. Scholars however disagreed claiming it read in Latin 'For the King the Law and the Mob'.

The first clipping relates to the close of the competition and the disappointment at the entries quality with only 3 being described as suitable entries. I found this a strange announcement as at the same time they claim that adjudication had not yet begun.

The Canberra Times - Friday 9 September 1927

National Library of Australia
Eventually 9 entries were weeded out of 35 designs with some confusion amongst th…