Friday, April 18, 2014

April 18 Oz History today in the past, present and future

In 1951 Dame Daisy Bates, controversial Irish-born journo who spent time with the Aboriginal people and who may or may not have been entirely truthful about their lives, dropped off the perch today in a nursing home.

Pig Iron Bob Menzies was voted in as leader of the United Australia Party today in 1939 and was sworn in (and undoubtedly sworn at) as Prime Minister 8 days later.

One-time hubby of the aforementioned Dame Daisy Bates, Breaker Harry Morant, had been court martialed in secret (against regulations) and shot in February, but despite the court transcripts conveniently going missing a summary of the trumped up nonsense appeared in the London Times today in 1902.

Today in 1831 the Sydney Herald/Sydney Morning Herald was pupped making it the oldest newspaper in Oz celebrating its 183rd birthday today.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

April 17 Today in Aussie History

Mike Walsh did the unthinkable today in 1967 - he opened the telephone lines at 2SM to on-air radio allowing listeners to vent their spleens legally for the first talkback radio in Oz.
Annnnd.....we've all pretty much gone downhill since then.

Today in 1944 saw the RAAF's first Chinese-Australian airman, Warrant Officer Wong See, appointed to Pilot Officer.

 Maria Lock was one classy, clever chickybabe; she was born the daughter of Yarramundi the 'Chief of the Richmond Tribes', sister to Colbee, wife of Bennelong's son, the first sanctioned Aboriginal lady to marry a convict, probably the first Aboriginal gal to be assigned the same convict and she became a landowner in her own right.
But today, in 1819, the Sydney Gazette reported her talents in the schoolroom when the 14 year old Maria took the major first prize in the school anniversary exams having beaten over 100 'European' kids,
"Prizes were prepared for distribution among such children as should be found to excel in the early rudiments of education, moral and religious and it is not less strange than pleasing to remark, in answer to an erroneous opinion which had long prevailed with many, namely, that the Aborigines of this country were insusceptible of any mental improvement which could adapt them to the purposes of civilized association, that a black girl of 14 years of age … bore away the chief prize."

Twas Hump Day (Wednesday) in 1861 when poor Charley Gray earned himself a most ignoble distinction - that of being the first bloke to pop his clogs on the Burke and Wills Expedition following both a dreadful bout of dysentery and a beating from Burke when he found Charley stealing food.

Things were more than a bit crook with the Colony in 1790 when the ship Sirius slipped down the plug hole near Norfolk Island in March taking most of the food with her; this led to two major things...that Lieut-Gov King swanned off to Britain which left a nasty bully in charge of Norfolk Island who proclaimed martial law for 4 months, and that Gov Phillip dispatched the ONLY remaining ship HMAS Supply to Batavia on this day for emergency food stores.

21 years ago (1993) Nicky Winmar did The Most Awesome thing when he responded to racial abuse being hurled at himself and other Aboriginal football players - he lifted up his footy guernsey, pointed to his skin and proclaimed,
"I'm Black! And proud to be Black!"
The fact he played for St Kilda and not South Melbourne is almost forgivable.
Almost.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

April 16 Stuffz in the past of Oz

Today in 2011 the town of Bowen in Banana Bender Country (Queensland) was rockin' it old skool when a 5.3 earthquake hit town just as the ankle biters were let loose from school at 3.30pm.

The University of Queensland was pupped today waaay back in the Dark Ages of 1910 to the joyful squeals of those what got learned proper stuffs.

Again in QLD there was undoubtedly cream sponges, shortbread bikkies and the obligatory Iced Vo-Vo passed about with gay abandon when the railway line from Dalby to Ipswitch was done and dusted today in 1868.

The horrific Massacre at Appin (NSW) in 1816 began on this day when word came through to the soldiers charged with "rounding up the hostile natives" that a group of Dharawal people were camped near Broughton's farm at Appin.
Investigating at 1am (17th April) the soldiers heard children crying at the camp before the dogs roused the sleeping Aboriginals who leapt to their deaths over the cliffs while others were shot by soldiers.

The naval chap turned policeman turned explorer Colonel Peter Egerton Warburton suffered from Itchy Feet...as this was not Rampaging Footrot but merely the urge to go trotting about the vast continent called Oz he didn't bother with any over-the-counter creams.
Instead he set off for a stroll from Central Australia today in 1873 to have a Captain Cook (look) for an overland route between here and there...here being Alice Springs and there being Perth.

Remember them thar Fenians who were plotting and planning the escape of their compatriots from the drear Fremantle Gaol back in 1876?
Well, they'd parallel parked their ship the Catalpa between Rottnest and Garden Islands on this day - being Easter Sunday way back when - and successfully effected the escape of the political prisoners on Easter Monday (17th April) and probably had a proper knees up on board to celebrate.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

April 15 Wibbley-Wobbley Timey-Wimey Aussie History

In 1794 armed watchmen guarding the crop of maize at Toongabbie shot three Darug Aboriginal men and beheaded one to prove their tale; on this day Judge Advocate Richard Atkins scribed in his diary how,
‘The head of one is brought in and the Lt. Govr [Major Francis Grose] has preserved it, as a present for Dr. Hunter.’
 *vomit*

James Broomfield and Josiah Hodgkins were not the Messiahs, they were Very Naughty Boys cos today in 1841 they a'bushrangin did go.
 After bailing up Henry Atkins Bonney in his own home and nicking his 35 pounds these likely lads made their way to a house at Norfolk Plains and, feeling a tad peckish, baked themselves some damper from scratch.
At least they didn't expect the home owner to cook for them.

 In 1876 The Australasian Sketcher with Pen and Pencil published a news item stating that the station-master at Leigh Road Railway Station (aka Bannockburn) was fined 5 pounds as he'd popped a coffin in the guards van...containing a dead body.
Oops.
One must always place the dead body in a seated position in 3rd class.
No, actually he should have called for a truck to convey the corpse to Geelong, instead.




Monday, April 14, 2014

April 14 Oz history

Dear clever Mr Quong Tart was reported in todays edition of Australian Town and Country Journal of 1894 as travelling to China to visit his mother in Canton and to open up trade relations with China, particularly in regards to Australian wool - "... It has often been predicted that China will one day enter the arena of the world's commerce as a manufacturer of textile fabrics..."

 Today in 1879 Henri L'Estrange, having taken to the wide blue yonder from Victoria Barracks in Melbourne, performed the first emergency parachute descent of a hot air balloon in Oz when the patches holding his balloon together came adrift and plonked him down with nary an injury behind Government House.

Sydney was graced on this day in 1999 with 500,000 tonnes of hailstones via a supercell storm that left a damages bill of A$2.3 billion.

Tom Saunders became a very happy camper today in 1870 when he tripped over a pile of gold at Gulgong and started a major rush for riches.

Quan Sing, a general store owner in Derby, WA, had multiple issues with the law of the land in his day; despite having born in Hong Kong (and therefore classified as a natural born British subject) he'd had his alcohol license and permits to employ Aboriginals revoked, and had been prosecuted in the courts for continuing to employ 'natives'...today in 1913 he again wrote to the Attorney General requesting the reinstatement of his permit as he urgently needed to employ an Aboriginal woman to assist his wife who was pregnant with their 7th child.
His request was again denied.

Back in 1925 the rural areas were crying out for labour so the Big Brother scheme was launched today that saw the immigration of child migrants from Britain to Oz, with the first lads arriving in Melbourne on the ship Jervis Bay in December of that same year.

The Human Rights Act was ratified by Oz today in 1981.
Someone wanna send a memo to the Big Two political parties in Canberra  cos I think they've forgotten.


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