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1HERITAGE September - October 2013



Men and women of the bush inearly Australian cinema

A summary of the Theo Barker Memorial Lecture delivered inBathurst on August 16, 2013, presented by the Bathurst DistrictHistorical Society in conjunction with Charles Sturt University.

By Andrew Pike, OAM

WHEN I FIRST started researchingthe history of Australian film historyin the late 60s, the landscape wasvery bleak.

There were no film studies at anyuniversity, and no publications toact as a guide.

I eventually located some oases inthe desert – the pioneeringresearch of Ross Cooper, MervWasson, Anthony Buckley, JoanLong and a handful of others, andsome dedicated librarians (LarryLake, Rod Wallace and RayEdmondson) working within the filmsection of the National Library ofAustralia, doing their best to findresources to save films at risk ofbeing lost.

Ross Cooper and I decided to poolour resources to try to provide aframework for our own research andhopefully to help others.

Our book was eventually the result(Australian Film, 1900-1977,published by Oxford UniversityPress).

In working systematically towardsour listing, I began by workingbackwards from the late 60s,scouring capital city newspapersand trade publications to findevidence of Australian films that hadbeen produced and released in thepast.

It was a long but exciting journeyback in time, and I became used tofinding only a small handful of filmseach year – maybe 6 or 7 in a goodyear, or none in some grim years.

Back through the decades to the30s and the 20s and the First WorldWar years the story was alwaysmuch the same – just a thinscattering of Australian films inAustralian cinemas.

But then we reached 1912 and1911, and suddenly we foundevidence of Australian filmseverywhere, scores of films, manyeach month.

Our excitement was perhaps likethat of an archaeologist who digsdown through geological layers andthen suddenly reaches a layerwhere there is evidence of a lostcivilisation.

Here in 1911 and 1912 was a richtreasure trove of Australian cinemathat had been forgotten, and wasunlike anything in later years, atleast up to the late 60s where oursearching had begun.

The landscape of film in 1911 and1912 was indeed strange – not onlyAustralian films galore, but no signof Hollywood.

Instead theatres showcased filmsfrom Germany, Sweden, Denmark,Italy, England – and only a few shortfilms from America.

Silent cinema knew no languagebarrier, and Australian films were avital part of this cosmopolitan mix.

Lorna Denver (played by Vera James) shows her skill at branding - ascene from the 1921 film, ‘A Girl of the Bush’

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2HERITAGE September - October 2013

An opinion from the editor.......

John Leary, OAM -President, Blue MountainsAssociation of Cultural HeritageOrganisations Inc.


September - October2013

*P1 Men and women of thebush in early Australiancinema by Andrew Pike

*P2 Opinion - Planning backflip- new laws in doubt - butvigilance imperative byJohn Leary

*P5 State government sale ofBridge Street buildings

*P6 A grave story by PeterChinn

*P6 Mary Reynolds to “retire”*P7 The Paragon, Katoomba by

Ian Jack*P10 Valley Heights locomotive

depot centenary.*P11 Good speakers, entertain-

ment and lunch in aheritage dining room

*P12 RAHS annual conference-Great divide:getting therefrom here theme

*P12 Pre conference drinks*P13 Exposing our pictorial past*P13 Fish fossils in Canowindra*P13 Leading professionals join

National Trust Board*P14 Time for cleaning your

museum by Peter Stanbury*P15 Touring the past: Touring

and history in Australia*P16 BMACHO committee

members demystifysocial media

*P16 Timeline for Mt Tomah andBlue Mountains Garden

*P17 The Red Admiral tocontinue until year’s end

*P17 Stories of Devotion willbring exhibition to end

*P17 Wendy Hawkes to talkabout the Cooks

*P18 Old Toongabbie Farm: anelusive vision byJanBarkley-Jack

*P18 Scrutenizing paper-basedcollections

*P20 Restoration ofSpringwood’s monuments

*P21 Thomas Hobby makes hismark as Cox takes a‘sickie’, August 1814 byPeter Rickwood

*P21 Japanese culture atNorman Lindsay Gallery

*P22 Blue Mountains ExplorersTrail map idea

*P23 Railway journeys to theupper Blue Mountains

*P24 Fizzy soda water muchloved by the gentry since1783

Planning backflip: newlaws in doubt --- butvigilance imperative

One of the first actions by theO’Farrell government when itcame to power some 2-and- a-half-years ago was to repeal thenotorious Part 3A section of thePlanning Act which the oustedLabor government had allowed tobe abused.

The Liberal government promisedto return planning decisions backto the local community.

The government has touted itsplanning reforms as the biggestchanges to the planning regime in30 years, to streamline approvalprocesses and ensuredevelopment matches the need fornew homes and jobs.

Instead landmark planning reformshave met with severe criticism atall levels of the community.

The central plank of the Coalition’selection promise — that localcommunities have more of a say inthe planning process did not rate areal mention in the draft Bill northe government’s white paper.

Instead it was proposed that 80percent of developmentapplications be waved throughunder a proposal by whichapplications would be assessedstrictly against planning codes —“codes assessment” — rather thanhave to be considered case-by-case by local governmentcouncils.

Grave concerns had beenexpressed that heritage andenvironmental issues would besidelined to prevent the communityfrom opposing unwanteddevelopment.

The changes would have erasedecological principles which limitedthe community’s ability to protectnatural assets.

Local government around the statewas in revolt and full credit tocouncils in this region for theirstand. Blue Mountains City Council

led by its then deputy, now mayorMark Greenhill did much to put thecase that this region has specialplanning needs and that a “one-fits-all” code was not acceptable.

A white paper outlining the changesattracted almost 5000 submissions,hardly the “small vocal minority”suggested by a rapaciousdevelopment industry.

One group alone, the BetterPlanning Network Inc. (BPN) hassome 420 affiliated communitygroups including BMACHO.

The relentless work of CorrineFisher from BPN has broughttogether a wide spectrum ofstakeholders to oppose thisproposed legislation which evenICAC is reported as having warnedthe Bill contains a high risk ofcorruption.

BPN’s campaign is not a ragtagprotest it is a professional exercisewhich could well be taken as amodel for future actions againstthreats to individual and groupdissent to bad legislation.

Planning and Infrastructure director-general Sam Haddad has admittedthat the planned overhaul had“gone further than the governmentintended” and department staff mayhave unintentionally spread“inaccurate or misleadinginformation”

It now appears that the NSWPlanning Minister, Brad Hazzardhas done a backflip, lacking thesupport of cabinet colleagues formajor components of the Bill.

But stakeholders and thecommunity need to be vigilant andkeep up the pressure on local MPsto ensure this toxic planningproposal never becomes law. Theproposed reforms empowerdevelopers not communities.

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3HERITAGE September - October 2013


films made in

those [early]

years were

entirely for



Continued from page 1It was during the First World Warthat the high levels of production inEurope were disrupted andHollywood stepped into the breachinternationally, gaining a footholdthat it never lost.

The boom in Australian films fadedaway after two glorious years forreasons which are complex and hadnothing to do with Hollywood, but tosome extent the Australian filmsmade in these boom years carried aseed which contributed to their owndemise, as we shall see.

Overseas sales were not part of thebusiness model, and were rare. Itwas emphatically a local filmindustry, making films for localaudiences – audiences that thefilmmakers could know andunderstand.

The subjects were many and varied- convict era dramas, filmedversions of American and Britishplays, films inspired by paintings,poems, songs - and of the 100 ormore films made at that time, about40 were dramas set in the bush –usually stories which romanticisedthe past.

That past could encompass goldmining dramas, stories of clasheswith Aboriginal Australians, andpioneering stories, but about a thirdof the bush films were aboutbushrangers.

Captains Midnight, Starlight,Moonlite and Thunderbolt were

heroic figures in these bushrangingsagas alongside Ben Hall andmembers of his gang, and of courseNed Kelly.

These bushranging films constituteda distinctive local genre well beforeWesterns became established inHollywood: we had our own stockcharacters, our own stock situationsthat owed nothing to Americancowboys and Westerns. As onefilmmaker from those days,Raymond Longford, later recalled:“All they needed was (sic) horseshired from stables in Redfern, someuniforms, guns, a stagecoach, andenough men to play troopers andrangers.

“They would take their gear down tothe bush at Brookvale, outsideManly, camp out for a week and -without any script - make a film.Their action was usually astagecoach hold-up, a lot ofgalloping, and a shooting-match.”(Daily Telegraph, Sydney,November 9, 1946)

By 1912, the popularity ofbushrangers started to causeconcern to the New South WalesPolice who had carriage of filmcensorship at that time.

They felt that this wave of filmsglorified criminal behaviour, made amockery of law enforcement, andwas unhealthy for young audiences.

The result was a police ban onbushranging films which effectivelyremoved the most popular malefigure from Australian cinema.

With the sudden loss of thestrongest male characters in thelocal bush genre, the men who wereleft seemed to be an empty shell.

Many of them seemed to becomebland and polite, and were nomatch for the later heroes of theAmerican West such as WS Hartand Tom Mix who took over thepopular imagination during the waryears.

With the bushranger ban, the “realmen” of the bush disappeared, butthe women did not.

The women who featured in manyof these early bush dramas appearto have followed a particularstereotype which survived in bushdramas until the last greatmanifestation of the bush heroine inthe Daphne Campbell role in TheOverlanders in 1946.

The women of the bush were adistinct local phenomenon: theydiffered profoundly from many laterHollywood heroines of the Westerngenre.

The Australian bush heroines couldconfidently and reliably do the workof a man – could manage a station,go mustering, work in the shearingsheds, brand cattle, and ride withgreat proficiency.

At the same time, they could beattractive, demure and glamorousafter the day’s work was done.Continued page 4

The shearing shed at Freemantle Station, outside Bathurst, used as alocation for the 1921 film, ‘A Girl of the Bush.’ Vera James as ‘the Girl’

is in the centre.

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4HERITAGE September - October 2013

the Bush (1921) is a well-manneredsurveyor, not a “true” man of thebush though doubtless he willbecome one when he marries her.

The contrast with some of thestrong women of the AmericanWest is remarkable: in Hollywood,women who did a man’s job wereoften depicted as tomboys,sometimes emotionally disturbed,and had to be tamed.

Continued from page 3They were far from being tomboysand in no sense competed withmen; on the contrary, they enjoyedmale company, even flirting with thebland young men who courtedthem.

In the absence of strong maleheroes, these women were oftenthe protagonist.

The duality in her personality,balancing the “masculine” and“feminine” aspects of her character,could be expressed in her veryname. In The Squatter’s Daughter(1933) she is Jo to the men, andJoan to those who know herdomestically.

The heroine of Silks and Saddles in1921 is known around the station asBobbie, but is Roberta in thehomestead.

In some films the bush heroineshared responsibilities with a manwho might be a brother but whowould sometimes be weak, lazy,snivelling, dishonest, immoral,selfish and irresponsible – in short,a bounder.

Sometimes he was literally disabledas in The Squatter’s Daughter.

Interestingly, the hero whoromances the heroine in A Girl of

‘In the absence of strong male heroes, thesewomen were often the protagonist’

Gun-toting, whip-cracking, tough-as-nails characters such as AnnyOakley were essentially competitiveand challenging to men (“Anythingyou can do, I can do better”), butthe Australian counterpart had noneed to be competitive: she was abalanced, well-rounded characterwho could be an equal of the menin her life.

Very few of the early films from1911-12 survive but we can learn alot from newspapers articles,advertising and other publishedmaterial.

Where fragments of the films dosurvive, we can see vivid examplesof these women who are far frombeing conventional “romanticinterest” or relegated to home-making and child-rearing roles likemany women in the American West.

They were a distinctive localcreation, strong and forcefulcharacters at the forefront of ournational cinema when it burgeonedbefore the First World War.

Since the 1950s, her demise fromour national culture is almostcomplete.

Women in the bush in later filmshad little in common with her.Continued page 5

Lorna Denver (played by Vera James) at work on the station, watchedby her dissolute suitor Oswald (played by Herbert Linden) - a scene

from the 1921 film, ‘A Girl of the Bush’.

Lorna Denver (played by Vera James) . This image and othersincluded in this article have been accessed courtesy National Film

and Sound Archive.

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5HERITAGE September - October 2013

Andrew Pike is a film distributor,film historian, documentary film-maker and former exhibitor. WithRoss Cooper, he wrote AustralianFilm 1900-1977, published byOxford University Press.

His films as director include theaward-winning Angels of War(1982) about Papua New Guineaduring World War 2, The Chifleys ofBusby Street (2008) aboutAustralia’s post-war Prime Minister,Ben Chifley, and Emily in Japan(2010), an arts documentarycommissioned by ABC TV.

He has personally producedseveral documentaries for otherdirectors.

Andrew managed the ElectricShadows cinema in Canberra for 27years, from 1979 to 2006, andthrough his company, Ronin Films,has distributed many Australianfilms including Strictly Ballroom andShine, and 500 documentaries.

In 2007 Andrew was awarded anOAM and an honorary doctoratefrom the University of Canberra for

his services to the film industry andcommunity.

In 2003 he was appointed by theFrench government to the rank ofChevalier dans L’Ordre des Arts etLettres for Ronin’s promotion ofFrench cinema in Australia.

He served on the Board of theNational Film and Sound Archivefrom 2008 to 2012 and is a memberof the ACT Government’s arts policyadvisory council.

Andrew Pike, OAM

About the authorContinued from page 4The bush became a claustrophobic,stultifying environment from which awoman needs to escape (Dust inthe Sun and My Brilliant Career) orwith which a woman struggles longand hard (We of the Never Never).Nicole Kidman’s role in Australiamight have had potential but missedthe mark entirely.

Perhaps the conventions ofAmerican film and television havenow become so pervasive that weno longer know what we once had,or even feel the need for it.

But exploration of our own nationalcinema and its uniquecharacteristics can reveal excitingelements that are worthy of muchmore study and discussion.

When the National Film and SoundArchive can marshal the resourcesto re-release forgotten gems like ASquatter’s Daughter and A Girl ofthe Bush, we will finally have thetools to understand the characterswho once stood strong and proud atthe centre of our popular culture.

Forgotten gems

The three major NSW Governmentowned Bridge Street, Sydneysandstone buildings – the LandsDepartment, Department of Educa-tion and the Chief Secretary’sBuildings are proposed for sale/lease by the government promptingexpressions of deep concern by thepublic to the National Trust.

The three buildings were listed onthe National Trust Register in the1970s and on the State HeritageRegister in 1999.

As a group and individually theyhave the highest heritage signifi-cance.

For example, the Lands DepartmentBuilding “is one of the most influen-tial and major public buildings everestablished during the mid nine-teenth century in Australia’s colonialhistory.”

While the National Trust supportsthe concept of “adaptive re-use” tokeep buildings intact and to fund

their ongoing maintenance, anydevelopment proposal for thesethree buildings must be sympathetic.

These are landmark buildings seen“in the round” with importantornamentation on their rooftops.

Like the Queen Victoria Building anydevelopment would have to respect

State government sale of Bridge Street buildingsthe scale of these buildings and theirextraordinary exteriors, interiors androoftops.

The Trust has expressed deepconcern about proposals in the newdraft state planning legislation thatwould transfer planning approvalpowers for State Heritage Registerlisted buildings from the HeritageCouncil of NSW to the Director-General of the Department ofPlanning & Infrastructure.

The treatment of these buildings islikely to be the first major test of thenew planning/heritage regime.

There must be careful considerationgiven to development proposals toensure that they properly protectthese historic gems

The Trust will carefully monitor anyproposed developments.Reprinted from National TrustHeritage Alert.

Lands Department tower - 1892

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6HERITAGE September - October 2013

IT WOULD BE hard to imagine anypossible connection between thedeath of a baby in Lithgow in 1898and the Australian Customs &Border Protection Service marinebase at Neutral Bay but some verystrange things do happen as thisstory will reveal.

James and Mary Tougher hademigrated from Scotland around1879, to make a new life in Lithgowwhere James probably found workwith Hoskins steel works.

James’ brother John and his wifeMargaret had joined them in thetown and the brothers werestalwarts of the municipal brassband.

James and Margaret were theparents of four sons and fivedaughters – a typically large familyfor the time.

In April 1897 their last child, Jack,was born but he was to have only avery short life, dying on March 17,1898.

The cause of death is not known butat that time and in that area typhoidclaimed the lives of quite a numberof young children.

Jack was buried in the Presbyteriansection of South BowenfelsCemetery which lies a little to theeast of Lithgow on the GreatWestern Highway.

A small marble headstone wassubsequently erected on his gravewhich bore the inscription:




The next part of the story is purehypothesis. Let us fast-forward tothe 1970s when two Customsofficers, after a weekend shootingtrip in the west, stop at Lithgow forrefreshments at a pub.

It is a moonlight night as they set offfor Sydney along the highway butnature calls and they decide to availthemselves of the quiet of SouthBowenfels Cemetery which is

unfenced andfreely accessable.

The officersnotice the smallheadstone (whichmeasures someforty centimetressquare) and in aspirit of devilmenteasily remove itfrom the plinthand take it withthem.


Little Jacky Tougher - a grave story

He noted the details and contactedthe Customs history officer inSydney, Peter Chinn to see whatmight be found out about thiscurious item.

Considering the possibility that theheadstone might have been on thesite before the Customs marinebase was established in the early1960s Peter Chinn contacted theNorth Shore Historical Society tosee if they had any knowledge ofthe headstone.

The Society’s investigationsdetermined that Jack Tougher’s

headstone belonged in far awaySouth Bowenfels Cemetery.

North Shore Historical Society’sjournal editor Cameron Sparksmade contact with John Bayliss,Local Studies Librarian at LithgowRegional Library to arrange for itsreturn.

This was finally done in 2003, andLithgow City council, which isresponsible for this very fine oldcemetery, restored the headstone toits rightful place.

Peter Chinn who contributed thisarticle is president of SpringwoodHistorical Society, a member ofSpringwood Historians and aregular contributor to HERITAGE

MARY REYNOLDS, the drivingforce behind the establishment ofMt Wilson & Mt Irvine HistoricalSociety in 1996, is to “retire” fromthe day-to-day activities of thesociety.

Mary plans, when time permits, toconcentrate on her history of MtWilson and sorting andcataloguing of archival material.

President of Mt Wilson & Mt IrvineHistorical Society, Des Barrett hassaid, “Mary’s contribution to our

society and to the study of localhistory generally, has been trulyremarkable.

“A full recognition of hercommitment to and work for thesociety will be acknowledged at thisyear’s annual meeting, to be heldon Saturday November, 9.”

Mary was honoured in January2011 with the award of an Order ofAustralia Medal (OAM) for serviceto the community through a rangeof historical, environmental andcharitable organisations.

Mary Reynolds to “retire”

In December 2000 a Customsofficer from Canberra was waitingfor a taxi in the car park and noticedthe little headstone.

On their return towork on theMonday they placeit in the gardenbeside the carpark at the NeutralBay marine base.

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7HERITAGE September - October 2013

by Ian Jack, an edited version of a talk given to theAustralian Society for the History of Engineering and

Technology and the Royal Australian Historical Societyon July 25, 2013

The Paragon, Katoomba

KATOOMBA INITIALLY developedin a fashion quite distinct from theother Blue Mountains townshipsalong the 1860s railway line.

From 1874 onwards trains halted atThe Crushers, in the vicinity of thelater station, not for passengers butfor stone quarried near the latercourt-house.1

The first settlement in the area wastwo kilometres to the south-west ofthe railway, near Katoomba Falls,where John Britty North opened acoal-mine complex in the JamisonValley in 1878.

There was a village near the top ofKatoomba Falls and another villagegrew up deep down in the valleyitself close to the base of the Falls,just below where the ScenicRailway ends today.

North built a private tramway fromthe top of the incline nearKatoomba Falls to join the mainwestern railway line at what is nowknown as Shell Corner, a kilometrewest of the present station.2

All this diverted attention away fromwhat we all think of as the core areaof the urban development, the areaon either side of Katoomba Street,that essential north-southconnecting link between the railwayand Echo Point.

This area around Katoomba Streetwas within the large land-holding ofJames Henry Neale, a masterbutcher and Sydney politician, whohad been a member of theLegislative Assembly from 1864until 1874.

In 1877 Neale built a country retreatcalled Froma on what is now thenew Cultural Centre site on the eastside of Parke Street. But in 1881Neale sold his interest in centralKatoomba, including the house, toFrederick Clissold.

Clissold, a wool-merchant residentin the Sydney suburb of Ashfield,immediately sub-divided the land,creating and naming the modernstreet system.

Parke, Katoomba and LurlineStreets were created, running north-

south, while Waratah Street raneast-west and defined the southernedge of the initial commercial centreof the new town. The Great WesternHighway and the railway defined thenorthern limit.3

So Katoomba changed rapidly. Itstarted as only two industrial haltson the railway, with stone for railwayworks at one and at the other aprivate tramway leading down to acoal-mine and two mining villages.

Then it became a characteristicMountains town relating to a properrailway station serving real people,as the 78 allotments created in1881 were, over two decades,purchased and developed.

During this period from the 1880sup to the First World War, the wholearea below the Carrington, quiteclose to the railway station, alongKatoomba, Parke and LurlineStreets, became a busy commercialprecinct, dominated by shops,services and a cluster ofguesthouses, tempered by aremarkable number of churches(Anglican, Methodist, Presbyterian,Catholic and Congregationalist)along with their halls and manses.

The influx of seasonal tourists andthe increasing number ofpermanent residents who servicedthe tourists created a need for localservices, so the area between thestation and Waratah Streetgradually filled up with shops,restaurants, cafés, two theatres andpublic utilities, such as the postoffice and the public school.4

But there was still a lot of freespace in 1906, captured in amarvellous photograph showingsouth Katoomba from the mostspectacular of the earlyconsolidations, the Great WesternHotel of 1882, better known as theCarrington, on its spacious hill-topsite.

Olympus,12 Cliff Drive, Katoomba, the house built by Zacharias andMary Simos in 1940. The upstairs section was altered in the 1980s.

Photograph, Ian Jack, 2001.

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8HERITAGE September - October 2013

Froma was still there in 1906, justbelow the Carrington although itwas demolished six years later.Between Froma and KatoombaStreet, the site of the later Paragonwas a large, empty space, whichremained undeveloped until 1909,when William Newlind built fourshops on the vacant KatoombaStreet block.5

Newlind had built the four shops asa speculation and three of themwere soon bought as an investmentby the Anglican rector of St Hilda’s,just across the street.

These were all retail shops until1916 when one was converted intorefreshment rooms, called theParagon.6

This was just at the beginning of anew phenomenon in Australiancountry towns, the Greek café.

From the early 1910s onwards anumber of émigrés from Greece,often with experience of the UnitedStates, created a new caféexperience in cities and townsthroughout Australia.

The Greek café was ‘essentially anevolutionary amalgam’ of the Greekcoffee-house and the Americanoyster saloon and soda parlour withthe familiar fare of the existing

British-Australian steak-houses, andthe names of the cafés, Californian,Golden Gate, Niagara on the onehand and Acropolis, Parthenon,Paragon on the other, reflected theshared inheritance.7

In Katoomba a drapery store built at92 Bathurst Road near the stationabout 1905 was converted in 1917to a Greek café called the Acropolisand soon rechristened the Niagarato emphasise its trendy Americandrinks.8

This is the Australian environmentwhich a fifteen-year-old Greek boycalled Zacharias Simos found whenhe migrated from Greece in 1912.

Where did he find work? In Greekcafés, of course, in Sydney, inWindsor and in Tenterfield.9

By 1916 he was in Katoomba,where in a brief partnership withDemetruos Sophios he became afruiterer and a confectioner, openinghis own premises in Katoombacalled the Paragon Café and OysterPalace.

He was advertising his Paragonwares as ‘confectionery, fruit,American fountain drinks, and ice

Location map of the Carrington hotel and theParagon Café.

A real entrepreneur at 19

cream specialities’.This was inSeptember 1916.

He was a realentrepreneur at theage of 19, offeringto deliver freshlobsters andoysters anywherein the Mountainsand making aspeciality of ‘late


Simos was an earlyexponent ofAmerican-stylesoda drinks withfancy flavours: hefell foul of the lawin 1918 forcombiningraspberry syrup(brought fromAmerica) with toomuch sodiumbenzoate


But he survived the fine of £2(about $150 today) and expandedthe Paragon in 1925 to create thepresent deep restaurant area whichwe all love today.11

This doubled the length of the caféand a new soda fountain wasinstalled at the rear bar, with alavish use of Australian marble.

At this time wall panels wereadded, not the present ones, but‘artistic plaques’, framed in gold,which have not been captured inany known photograph.12

The bench seating was pleasantthough not out of the ordinary. Butthe decorations and the style of theParagon were of an elegance whichdistinguished it from most of itsrivals.

Simos and the Poulos family whichran the Niagara round the cornerwere good friends although rivalsand the Paragon and the Niagarawere keenly aware of each other.13

The area just behind the Paragonbar is now a sort of hall-way, but in1925 it was an elegant privatesupper-room: this is why it has fineperiod detailing, such as its ArtDeco ceiling light.

Behind this supper-room was a newchange-room with all modernconveniences for ‘the girls’ whoworked in the café. Further backagain was the kitchen, just as it istoday.14

Upstairs in 1925 was the industrialside of the enterprise, not open tothe public.

There was a bakehouse, a largerefrigeration plant for the ice-creammade on the premises and a new‘sweet factory’, with a gas boiler anda forced-air draught for cooling thechocolate.15

The technology of the chocolaterieis well documented, although theequipment was dismantled adecade ago.

Photographs of the upstairs roomssurvive from various periods andhave been gathered together anddisplayed by Robyn Parker.

Continued page 9

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9HERITAGE September - October 2013

Continued from page 8The chocolate-making equipment isstill stored upstairs and on April 10,2013 members of the ASHETcommittee inspected andphotographed the various items witha view to compiling a full report laterin the year.

This industrial dimension to theParagon is of exceptionalimportance.

Chocolate-making at the Paragonhad been of a high order ever sinceZacharias Simos had been joinedby his two brothers: George was amaster confectioner and they weretrading as Simos Brothers by1926.16

During a visit to Europe in 1929,Zacharias married an American-born daughter of café proprietorswhom he met in his own home townof Kythera in Greece when theywere both on holiday.

Maria or Mary became something ofa legend in Katoomba and as awidow after 1976 managed theParagon until 1987.17

Mrs Simos sums up the complexinfluences evident in the way inwhich America and Europe (Austriaas well as Greece) contributed tothe Australian Greek café.

In 1946 and 1947 new bas-relieffriezes were commissioned for thefront rooms.

These were by an émigré Danishartist, Otto Steen, who had arrivedin Australia at the end of 1927.

He also did significant work atEverglades for Henri van de Velde

“... industrialdimensionto theParagonis ofexceptionalimportance.”

The chocolate room upstairs at the Paragon, showing the equipmentnow in store still in situ in 2000.

and assisted Rayner Hoff with thesculptures in Sydney’s AnzacMemorial.18

Steen’s fine friezes matched verywell with the fairly extravagant newrooms right at the back of theParagon when it was remodelledagain in 1934 and 1936, designedby the theatre architect Henry White(who had also created the Capitoland State theatres in Sydney in1927-1929).19

These two private rooms forfunctions are remarkable, not onlyfor their décor but also for their verysexy lighting.

Robyn Parker, the presentenlightened lessee of the Paragon,has rescued important memorabiliaand documentation from variouscubby-holes around the buildingand has put up a valuable museumdisplay in the ballroom. We are allmuch in Robyn’s debt.

It is illuminating to compare theParagon with the Simos family’sown house in Katoomba.

Originally, Zach Simos lived abovethe shop, in that part of the upstairsrabbit-warren overlookingKatoomba Street which was notused for making chocolates or forbaking cakes.

In the late 1930s Zach and Marybought vacant land on what is nowCliff Drive down at Echo Point andin 1940 they commissioned GNKenworthy, the architect of the State

Ballroom in Sydney, who had alsoworked on the State Theatre, todesign a classy Functionalist house,which they called, of course,Olympus. Despite some additions tothe upper frontage in the 1980s, thehouse and its importantoutbuildings, (garage, pergola,summer-house, fuel store), haveretained a great deal of integrity.20

This is the necessary corollary tothe Paragon, blending perfectly withthe developed façade of the famouscafé.

The Paragon is the apotheosis ofthe Greek café in Australia and itreflects the increasing prosperityand stylishness of the Simos familyas the premises were extended andaggrandised between the two worldwars.

It has managed to preserve to anastonishing degree the featureswhich made it so famous, and thecontinuing quality of the chocolates,still made upstairs, and the décor ofthe long room which everyone seesare stunning.

But it is the unseen Paragon whichmakes it ultra-special: the twounderused grand private functionrooms at the back which so fewpeople ever see, let alone eat anddrink and dance in; and most of all,not least for ASHET, the crowningglory is the survival of the upstairsindustrial rooms for chocolate-making and for baking, and thesurvival of much of the earlierequipment seen in situ in the oldphotographs.Continued page 10

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10HERITAGE September - October 2013

Such an industrial dimension withinthe context of a spectacular ArtDeco café is extremely rare andprecious. Robyn Parker is to becongratulated for her exemplarystewardship.

.1 B Fox, Upper Blue MountainsGeographical Encyclopaedia, 2nd

ed., author, Bathurst, 2001, pp.46-47.2 PJ Pells and PJ Hammon, TheBurning Mists of Time: atechnological and social history ofmining at Katoomba, PhilsquarePublishing, Katoomba, 2009, pp.58-60, 163; H King photograph,c.1890, Mitchell Library ,StateLibrary of NSW, PXA 61, p.70.3 RI Jack, History, ‘Site of Froma’,State Heritage Inventory 1170440,Blue Mountains City Council,Katoomba, K 117.4 RI Jack, History, ‘KatoombaHeritage Conservation Area’, StateHeritage Inventory 1170518, BlueMountains City Council, Katoomba,K 159.5 Australasian Traveller, 7 January1907, p.13.6 RI Jack, History, ‘Paragon CaféGroup’, State Heritage Inventory1170394, Blue Mountains CityCouncil, Katoomba, K 034.7 Cf. L Janiszewski and E Alexakis,‘“American Beauties” at TheNiagara: the marriage of Americanfood catering ideas to British-Australian tastes and the birth of theclassic Australian “Greek café”’.Locality, Spring 2002, pp.14-18.8 RI Jack, History, ‘Café Niagara’,State Heritage Inventory 1170431,Blue Mountains City Council,Katoomba, K 106.9 R Parker, ‘The ParagonChronology’, p.1.10 Blue Mountain Echo, 15September 1916 p.5, 10 August1917, p.4.11 Blue Mountain Echo. 22 March1918, p.1.12 Blue Mountain Echo, 4 June1926, p.2.13 Cf. Blue Mountain Echo, 1February 1924, p.4.13 Blue Mountain Echo, 4 June1926, p.2.14 Blue Mountain Echo, 4 June1926, p.2.15 Blue Mountain Echo, 4 June1926, p.2.16 Parker,’ Paragon Chronology’,p.1.

17 Parker,’ Paragon Chronology’,pp.1-2; Blue Mountain Echo, 1February 1924, p.4.18 G Sturgeon, The Development ofAustralian Sculpture, 1788-1975,Thames and Hudson, London,1978, p.136; D Hunt, ‘Obituary: OttoSteen, 1902-1981’, SculptorsSociety Bulletin, October 1981, p.3;Information from Robyn Parker,2012; the friezes were dated by thesculptor.

“…[this] Art Deco Cafe extremely rare and precious

End notes

Paragon frieze by Otto Steen, showing the judgment of Paris.

19 Parker, ‘Paragon Chronology’,p.2; J Thomas, ‘White, Henry Eli(1876-1952)’, Australian Dictionaryof Biography.12, MelbourneUniversity Press, Carlton, 1990,p.468.20 RI Jack, ‘History, ‘Olympus’, StateHeritage Inventory 1170110, BlueMountains City Council, Katoomba,K 068; http://www.daao.org.au/bio/gn-kenworthy/.

Valley Heights locomotivedepot centenary

Andrew Tester from the ValleyHeights Locomotive HeritageMuseum, last month held agathering of local historical andfamily history societies fromNepean and Blue Mountains at theMuseum

This was to hand out theirbrochure 2014 – Celebrating thePast, Envisioning the Future,which is a celebration of 100 yearsof service to the BlueMountains community.

Andrew went through theproposed event calendar for 2013/2014 (which is subject to change),starting with community eventsfrom January 2014. The firstevent will be the local communitypre centenary celebrationon Australia Day, Sunday, January26, 2014.

On Friday January 31, 2014, themuseum official opening andofficial opening of centenary

celebrations will be held – thisevent will be invitation only.

This will be followed by acommunity event on the weekendof February 1-2, 2014. Organisersare hoping to hold a community dayin March, where the local historical,family history,heritage organisationscan hold information stalls.

On the same day, the members ofthe public will also have anopportunity to experience steamtrain rides with shuttle trip beingplanned to operate betweenSpringwood and Penrith. This willbe confirmed in due course. Therewill be other events during the yearup until the World War 1 centenaryevent in October 2014.

After the presentation, Andrew tookall those present on a tour of thegrounds and Museum, where thereis a lot of work being carried out inpreparation for next year.

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11HERITAGE September - October 2013

Good speakers, entertainment and lunch inheritage dining room planned for conferenceTHE 2014 Blue Mountains HistoryConference being organised by theBlue Mountains Association ofCultural Heritage Organisations Inc,will be held again at The CarringtonHotel, following the success of the2012 event in this venue.

The conference will be held onSaturday, May 10, 2014 and alreadya number of speakers have beensecured.

Associate professor Ian Jack, MA,PhD, FRHistS, FRAHS will give atalk on historical educationalbuildings.

Ian served as president of the RoyalAustralian Historical Society for 11years and is regarded as aneminent historian with numerousbooks and other publications to hiscredit. He has been described byone of his peers and a“consummate scholar”.

He is constantly being sought as aspeaker around the state andthroughout the nation.

Another speaker will be HectorAbrahams, a heritage architect andformer RAHS councillor, who willgive a talk on historical buildingsbuilt for religious activities includingchurches and schools.

Hec has a deep interest in thearchitecture of old places - therepair conservation and sensitivechanges to buildings and theaddition of new buildings within anexisting precinct.

He has worked on larger projectsincluding the new wings at St Paul’sand St Andrew’s Colleges at theUniversity of Sydney, and theSydney GPO.

He isre very familiar with thearchitecture of many of the religiousbuildings in this region

Robyn Parker, proprietor of theParagon Café, Katoomba willparticipate in a question and answer(Q & A) half hour session on thehistory of the Paragon, assisted byIan Jack.

Dr Nick Lomb, a former astronomerat Sydney Observatory, will providean address about astronomyobserved from the Blue Mountains.He has observed the Transit ofVenus, the scientific event which ledCaptain Cook to Australia.

Nick has been involved in theobservations of the Tansit of Venusfrom Woodford Academy in June2004 and again in June 2012

The program for the Blue MountainsHistory Conference including anentertainment interlude will be

finalised in the next few weekswhen registrations will open.

The conference will finish by 3.45 –4.00 pm and an optional extra willbe offered on the registration formfor those wishing to go to theParagon Café for afternoon tea.

Robyn Parker has agreed to provideafternoon tea of tea/coffee, sconesand cream, plus a tour of theParagon Café for $10.

The fee for the conference, morningtea and buffet lunch at TheCarrington will be $50.

The Carrington has a long and richhistory spanning almost a centuryand a quarter since herestablishment by Sydney hotelierHarry Rowell.

Opened in 1882 as The GreatWestern, this ‘grand old lady’ soonbecame a popular mountain retreatfor international visitors, the elite ofSydney and those eager to see thenatural wonders of the BlueMountains.

Renamed ‘The Carrington’ in 1886,in honour of the then Governor ofNew South Wales, Lord Carrington,the hotel was extended by its newowner, Mr FC Goyder who iscredited with the creation of thegrand dining room. With itsextended and upgraded facilities,The Carrington gained even moreacceptance as a world classestablishment.

By the early 1900’s TheCarrington’s reputation as the

premier tourist resort in thesouthern hemisphere wasundisputed and the newspapers ofthe day often cited her as the onlyrival to Raffles within The Empire.

Sold in 1911 to Sir James JoyntonSmith, who introduced the famousstained glass facade, TheCarrington entered a new phaseand quickly became known as thehoneymoon destination of choice,and this remained so for the nexthalf a century.

The Carrington closed her doors inlate 1985 and remained empty andderelict until 1991 when it waspurchased with the aim of restoringand relaunching this ‘grand old lady’of the Mountains.

The Carrington reopened her doorsin December 1998 after eight yearsof restoration, and works arecontinuing on the restoration of thegardens, garages, stables, andpowerhouse.

The Carrington Hotel

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12HERITAGE September - October 2013

RAHS annual conference - Great Divide:Getting there from here theme

Katoomba Street, 1920 - RAHS Photographic Collection

THE THEME this year of the RAHSconference to be held in Katoombain November is The Great Divide:Getting there from here.

It will examine new family historyresources; commemorating the past;places and landscapes; museumcollections and society manage-ment.

There will be opportunities tonetwork with people who arecommitted to promoting local andcommunity history and who enjoysharing their successes andchallenges with others.

The conference will be held in theKatoomba RSL Club on Saturdayand Sunday November 2 and 3

The RAHS is delighted to announcethat the distinguished historicalgeographer Associate ProfessorJohn McQuilton has accepted aninvitation to deliver the 2013 LesleyMuir address.

His publications include The KellyOutbreak: The GeographicalDimensions of Social Banditry(1979), Australians: A HistoricalAtlas (1988) and Rural Australia andthe Great War: from Tarrawingee toTangambalanga (2001).

Outline of Conference Program Day 1 – Saturday 2 November –Welcome to Country • Welcome toRegion • Presentation of 2013Cultural Grants • RAHS President’sAddress – Dr Anne-Maree Whitaker • 2013 Lesley Muir address –Associate Professor John McQuilton• Morning tea and book sales •Session on new family historyresources • Lunch and book sales •Session on commemorating the pastwith particular focus on World War I• Afternoon tea and book sales •Choice of conference tours • Conference dinner

Day 2 – Sunday 3 November –Business Session • Presentation of2013 Heritage Grants• Morning teaand book sales • Session on placesand landscapes • Lunch and booksales • Session on museums &interpreting objects

For further information about theconference contact the RAHS on[02] 9247 8001 or [emailprotected].

There will be regular updates on theconference and other RAHS news inthe fortnightly eNewsletter. Source:RAHS eNewsletter September 2013Issue 1.

Tarella 1910 - Ada McLaughlin with her two daughters and friends.Image - Blue Mountains Historical Society

Pre-conference drinks at Hobby’s Reach hosted byBlue Mountains Historical Society

BMHS will be hosting pre-conference drinks from 5.30 pm attheir research premises Hobby’sReach on Friday November 1.

The Society will also be providingplace mats using images from theirextensive photograph collection todecorate tables for the Saturdaynight conference dinner.

There is limited parking at the pre-conference venue. However thereis on-street parking near-by. Thereis also a community bus available totransport people from KatoombaRSL to Hobby’s reach. Pleasecontact [emailprotected] fordetails of this service.

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13HERITAGE September - October 2013

Fish fossils in CanowindraTHE NATURALIST and wildlifebroadcaster Sir David Attenboroughhas described a collection ofAustralian fossils neglected by thestate’s natural museum as ‘worldclass”

On a break from his two-weekspeaking tour around the countryrecently , Sir David was taken to asite in NSW’s central west wherehundreds of ancient fish perished atthe bottom of small lake 360 millionyears ago.

Arguably one of the country’s mostimpressive fossils deposits, the sitereflects a time when fish ruled theworld and animals were on theverge of walking on land.

Today, evidence of this event canbe seen on several large rock slabson display at Canowindra’s Age ofFishes Museum.

“When you look at one of theseslabs you can see it isextraordinary,” said Sir David.

“What you have here is dozens, ifthe rock was big enough, hundredsof these things piled one on top ofanother.”

Sir David said the high qualityexhibits at the small Age of FishesMuseum, run by the Cabone ShireCouncil, were a credit to the localcommunity.

“But the find is world class and itdeserves even more than it has gothere,” he said.

“It would be nice to think that thestate or the nation should supportsuch a thing.”

Dr Alex Ritchie, an Australianpalaeontologist, a world authority onearly fishes and a former seniorresearcher at the AustralianMuseum who led the first, and only,excavation of the roadside site justoutside Canowindra 20 years agohad invited Sir David to visit the rarefossil deposit.

Several leading internationalpalaeontologists believe the sitemay contain some of the earliestevidence of tetrapods, the firstanimals to walk on land.Story: Nicky Phillips, photograph:Janie Barrett - The Sydney MorningHerald.

Sir David Attenborough and DrAlex Ritchie looking at the fossils

in Canowindra.

THE PRESIDENT of the NationalTrust of Australia (NSW), Ian CarrollOAM, is pleased to announce theappointment of two outstanding newdirectors to the Board - renownedarchitect Clive Lucas and charteredaccountant Alan Kerr.

Clive Lucas OBE is one ofAustralia’s most respected archi-tects, and a founding partner of CliveLucas, Stapleton & Partners.

Clive has won numerous awards,including the National RAIA LachlanMacquarie Award for restoration ninetimes. Clive has been appointed tofill a casual vacancy and will berequired to stand for the 2013election.

Alan Kerr is a Fellow of the Instituteof Chartered Accountants (FCA), aprofession he has worked in for 42years, and has been the principal ofAlan Kerr & Co for 21 years.

He holds many credentials, includingas a chartered tax advisor with theTaxation Institute (CTA), and is aregistered company auditor andregistered SMSF auditor. Alan hasbeen appointed for a fixed termexpiring in November 2014.

“The National Trust of NSW is veryfortunate to be gaining leadershipand expertise of this calibre, and Iwelcome both Clive and Alan to the

Board,” Mr Carroll said.

HOW important are your old familyphotos?

Ted Szafraniec will explore howwe learn from the past through ourold photos during his talk,“Exposing Our Pictorial Past” atthe Blue Mountains HistoricalSociety Rooms, 99 BlaxlandRoad, Wentworth Falls onSaturday, October 5t, 2013.

Morning tea will be available from10.00 AM. The meeting willcommence at 10.30 AM.

Ted’s talk will be of great interestto all those keen on photography,local history and the history of theBlue Mountains.

The Blue Mountains HistoricalSociety’s photographic collectionprovides a wonderful insight intothe history and culture of ourregion.

During the morning, the BMHSLibrary and Research Centre willbe open and the Society’spublications will be available forsale.



Leading professionals joinNational Trust Board

October 5 - 27An exhibition of watercolours byEsther McFarlane at Everglades,

LeuraGardens and gardening are greatloves of Esther, so naturally, theyare favourite subjects of hers to

paint. For further detail Scott4784 1938

Evergladesand beyond

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14HERITAGE September - October 2013

Time for spring cleaning your museum?

SPRING IS HERE! It is time toreview your museum…what can youdo to protect your heritageitems…what can you do to attractmore visitors…morevolunteers…more funds?

Recently I escaped winter in theBlue Mountains to the monsoonseason in Phnom Penh to face asimilar agenda at the NationalMuseum of Cambodia under theaegis of Australian BusinessVolunteers, a non-government, not-for-profit international developmentagency that sends volunteers to 16countries throughout the Asia Pacific


You can find out more if you fancyan overseas volunteer experience athttp://www.abv.org.au/

The National Museum of Cambodiais a wonderful museum. It ishoused in one of the most beautifulbuildings anywhere in the world.

It has a large, important, wellpreserved collection. Overseasmuseums want to borrow exhibitsand are prepared to providematerial benefits in exchange.

It is centrally located in a city visitedby people from all over the world.

When one has worked in a place fora long time the surroundings andhabits become so familiar that theyseem quite natural, satisfactory, andeven unchangeable.

But the challenges are notinsurmountable if one works insmall steps. So thought the newlyappointed director in the NationalMuseum of Cambodia.

The director was determined tobetter the museum and to providethe staff with opportunities toadvance their careers. As in anymuseum, keeping up with publicexpectations means constantimprovements, both short and longterm.

He wanted the eyes of a non-staffmuseum worker to look at themuseum and its operations anddiscuss improvements with the staff.

It is important to recognise thatsuccessful change is composed ofmany small steps. The path to theeventual destination may at firstsight seem long, difficult, evenfrightening but the most importantpart of the process is the decision togo and the first few steps. (Think ofa double B truck doing a U-turn in anarrow street.)

Some of the steps will be large, butmany will be simple, easy and evenenjoyable.

It is wise first to choose simple firststeps, relatively enjoyable ones thatproduce results quickly, or you maynever start.

Think of the best you can imaginefor your museum! How proud you

will be to have achieved what youset out to do.

In spite of some difficulties on theway you will be able to look backand see that improvements havebecome a part of your life – anexperience to pass onto yourchildren and grandchildren

I had discussions with senior staffand together we came up withnearly 100 steps to better serve thepublic and re-invigorate the moraleof the staff.

We realised that visitors usuallyhave limited time to learn somethingof the local culture, so exhibits mustbe presented so their significancecan be understood quickly.

Information should be easilyassimilated. Visitors must be able tofind their way around an unfamiliarbuilding and not be distracted bypublic health and safety concerns.

The idea was to come up with ideasand plans to make the museummore accessible, to increasefunding sources and to safeguardthe building and its contents.

Some of the steps proposed weresimple such as ensuring fireextinguishers were in working order,improving housekeeping so thatinsects and other animal pests donot damage the collection, and theprovision of free information aboutthe objects (improved labels andbrochures).

by Peter Stanbury, OAM, PhD

The National Museum of Cambodia has a splendid roofline.

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15HERITAGE September - October 2013

Continued from page 14Medium term objectives includedimproving storage conditions bymonitoring and controlling humidityand temperature, and introducingadded value-added visitation with‘behind the scenes’ tours.

Introducing a privilegedmembership category to raiseconsciousness among localbusinesses, council staff andcouncillors and possiblephilanthropists were alsosuggested.

Longer term proposals consideredspecialist “curator” positions,additions to the building to housethe library, thousands of historicphotographs and a conservationspace.

This would allow expansion of theexhibition space and improvedfacilities for school groups.

These efforts were to be guided bya policy document with a declaredmission and vision understood byall staff.

This document is important toinspire confidence in the museum’sachievements and goals by therelevant government departmentsand when seeking funding.

Do you have a few spare umbrellas? Is the path to the museum fromthe gates safe when wet?

Pictured above and clockwise arePeter Stanbury and SuzannaEdwards working at the NationalMuseum of Cambodia asvolunteers. 1. Protect yourselfwhen carrying out dirty jobs;2. Change your displays often torest objects from the light andrepeat visitors;3. Those objects that are packedaway should be unwrapped andchecked for mould, insects orother damage.



AN EXHIBITION,’Touring the past:tourism and history in Australia’currently be staged at the MacleayMuseum at Sydney University untilFebruary 14, 2014, charts the wayAustralians began to discover theyhad a past worth visiting.

Touring the past: tourism and history in AustraliaThe exhibition, curated by RebeccaConway, will showcase images fromSydney University Museums HistoricPhotograph Collection.

How did the Australian past becomean object of the tourist gaze?

For well over a century Australianshave learnt to be nostalgic abouttheir past. Convicts, bushrangersand rebellious diggers becamestandard tourist fare surprisinglyearly.

At the same time, Australia’s pastwas also acquiring a patina ofnostalgia, as artists discovered thebeauties of colonial architecture

and country towns recognised thebenefits of promoting their history totourists.

From Port Arthur to the Dog on theTuckerbox, this exhibition exploresthe variety of pasts that touristsvisited, the exhibits that drew themin and the souvenirs they tookaway.At left : CALEY’S REPULSE —The discovery of the remains ofthe long-lost relic was made by aparty of members of theAustralian Historical Society in1912 near Linden.Source: RAHS eNewsletterSeptember 2013 Issue 1 and Sydneyof University website.




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16HERITAGE September - October 2013


billion), launching Facebook into thesocial media arena, he introduced adifferent network to which millions

around the world includingBMACHO now subscribe.

BMACHO is grateful to formerpresident Pamela Smith, currentcommittee members Scott Pollockof Everglades Historic House andGardens and Wendy Hawkes ofLithgow City Council and EskbankHouse for bringing this organisationin to the 21st century media realmwith its own Facebook page.

BMACHO’s Facebook page ishttps://www.facebook.com/heritagebluemountains

Please ‘Like’ BMACHO’s Facebookpage.

Most organisations seem to beusing social media to create interestand to network with people andorganisations from far and wide,with great success.

BMACHO’s website is - http://www.bluemountainsheritage.com.au/

BMACHO members are asked tocontinue to send events to DickMorony for placement in the‘Calendar of Events’ [emailprotected] are emailed monthly by Dick.

Members are also asked to sendevents with photographs to,webmaster Scott Pollock [emailprotected] placement on the website under‘events’ and for the Facebook page.

At Everglades Historic House and Gardens, Leura this beautifulironstone wall curves along the edge of the lookout looking through

eucalypts to Mt Solitary.

Timeline for Mt Tomah and BlueMountains Botanic Garden

7000BC Earliest dated rock art on Bells Line of Road.

Darug Traditional Tribal Group inhabits northern Blue Mountains

including Mount Tomah

1600 Estimated date for oldest eucalypt in the Garden

1804 Naturalist George Caley visits Fern Tree Hill, now Mount Tomah

1823 Archibald Bell discovers a route across Blue Mountains,

afterwards known as Bells Line of Road

1823 Botanist Allan Cunningham visits the area

1830 Susannah Bowen receives the first land grant in the area

1934 Effie and Alfred Brunet acquire property for a cut-flower farm to

supply Sydney florists

1972 The Brunets present their land to the Royal Botanic Gardens


1987 Mount Tomah Botanic Garden opens to the public (1 November)2000 The Garden reaches a milestone 1 million visitors2002 Darug Connections storyboard trail launches

2009 Mount Tomah Botanic Garden acquires The Jungle. Lady (Nancy) Fairfax Walk opens to the public

2010 The World Heritage Education Centre opens

2011 The Garden gets a name change to Blue Mountains Botanic Garden, Mount Tomah

The Blue Mountains Botanic GardenBells Line of Road, Mt Tomah (02) 4567 3000

Australia’s highest botanic garden

IT WAS ONLY 20 years agothe New York Times: revealed: “Oneof the new technologies Americanvice president Al Gore is pushing isthe information superhighway,which will link everyone at home oroffice to everything else—moviesand television shows, shoppingservices, electronic mail and hugecollections of data.”

There’s a statistical theory that ifyou give a million monkeystypewriters and set them to work,they’d eventually come up with thecomplete works of Shakespeare.Thanks to the Internet we now knowthis isn’t true.

The Internet may be thesuperhighway to knowledge butwhen Sean Parker entrepreneurand computer hacker co-foundedFacebook (today worth $US2

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17HERITAGE September - October 2013

AN EXHIBITION celebrating thelives and achievements of SirJoseph and Dame Mary Cook is ondisplay at Eskbank House andMuseum, Lithgow until October 7.

He was a minister in the first federalgovernment, became prime ministerin 1913, was high commissioner inLondon and knighted in 1918.

As well as being beside him everystep of his career, Dame Mary washeavily involved in the Red Crossand was made a Dame in the Orderof the British Empire in 1925 for thiswork.

Curators Miriam Scott and WendyHawkes have given a series ofpresentations based on the images,objects and stories from theexhibition “Devotion Sir Joseph and

Dame Mary Cook” during Augustand September

A talk on the trials and tribulationsof creating the history exhibition“Devotion” will be conducted aslibrary forum at the LithgowLearning Centre on Thursday,October 3 at 5.30pm for 6pm. Forfurther information contact WendyHawkes 6354 9999

Stories of Devotion will bringexhibition to an end

WITH MORE THAN A YEAR passedsince the Governor of NSW,Professor Marie Bashir, AC CVOofficially opened “The Red Admiral”– an exhibition of Patrick White’syears at Mount Wilson’ it has beendecided to keep the exhibition openuntil the end of this year.

Mt Wilson and Mt Irvine HistoricalSociety celebrated the centenary ofPatrick White’s May 28, 1912 birthdate with the opening of anexhibition that examines the writer’searly years at Mt Wilson.

It highlights the impact of both theAustralian natural environment andthe influence of working class andwealthy society individuals andfamilies that were to strongly shapeWhite for the remainder of his life.

“He [White] was one of our greatestwriters and this exhibition enrichesour understanding of him,”Professor Bashir, said in openingthe exhibition last year.

“The hidden yearnings of White’scharacters are what I have mostenjoyed and now I am inspired torevisit them,” Professor Bashir said.

Most people were genuinelysurprised at the deep affectionWhite had for his childhood homeand the profound influence it had onhis work.

Sales of the video, Patrick White atMt Wilson have been encouraging.

An on-line version of the exhibitionis available for those who may wantto see it, but who cannot get to theTurkish Bath Museum at Mt Wilson.

Details of opening hours can beobtained by [emailprotected]



THE LIVES of Sir Joseph Cookand Dame Mary Cook will be thetopic for the guest speaker,Wendy Hawkes at a BMACHOgeneral meeting to be held onSaturday, October 19.

Wendy Hawkes,(pictured at right)is the cultural development officerwith Lithgow City Council andcurator at Eskbank House,Lithgow, where an exhibitionabout the Cooks is in its finalstages, closing on October 7.

The Cooks moved to Lithgow in1886 and Sir Joseph worked inthe Vale of Clwydd Colliery as hestudied and worked his way upthrough the unions and intopolitics. He became primeminister 27 years later.

A light lunch will be provided,(catered by the Cultural Centreand at BMACHO expense), at theCultural Centre at approximately12.30 pm

After lunch, from 1.30 pm to 3.30pm (or earlier) a workshop will beconducted, where a suggestedformat for an “Explorers CulturalTrail” brochure will be presented.

Those attending the workshop willbe asked for input into this project.

Please RSVP by [emailprotected] orphone Jan Koperberg on 02 47515834

When: Saturday, October 19,2013 from 10.30 am to 3.30 pm

Where: Blue Mountains CulturalCentre, Parke Street, Katoomba

Cost to participants: FREE

Wendy Hawkes to talk aboutthe Cooks

Wendy Hawkes

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18HERITAGE September - October 2013

Old Toongabbie Government Farm: anelusive vision for 5 governors

HAVE THE fearsome convict storiesand the loathsome reputation of theold Toongabbie Government Farmin early colonial times sometimescaught your interest?

Historian Jan Barkley-Jack’s latestwork, Toongabbie’s GovernmentFarm: an Elusive Vision for FiveGovernors 1791-1824, will givethose who have wondered aboutthis harsh place an opportunity tounderstand what really happenedthere.

The book is beautifully published byToongabbie & District HistoricalSociety. Michael Flynn, well-knownhistorian and author, has written theForeword, and in Flynn’s words,“those interested in colonial historywill be fascinated by these newperspectives on the penal colony asit struggled to secure a reliable foodsupply”.

Perhaps one of your forebears wasamongst that human struggle.

The story of the years beyond 1793provides insight into the emotional

fortitude of some sent there, whileshowing how most administrators,including Governor King, had theirvisions tested.

By quirky fate the ToongabbieGovernment Farm cattle becamelinked to William Bligh’s overthrowand added fuel to long-termopposition to the farm by JohnMacarthur.

Lachlan Macquarie added a twist tothe implementation of the BritishGovernment’s plans to close theNSW public farms, by applying forToongabbie to become his owncolonial estate.

The book is A4 format withcardboard spine and covers,containing 120 pages with 36 colourplates and 9 black and white plates,and includes maps.

In addition there are tables showingthe stock and agricultural detailsyear by year, as well as earlysettlers by date of promise of grant1792-1795.

Three appendices include lists ofgrants given by Governors Hunterand King in the district ofToongabbie, a distinct entity to theGovernment Farm but highlyinfluential in causing its demise.

The price of the book is $30 (doesnot include postage), and it isavailable from Toongabbie & DistrictHistorical Society, ph. 96361905

Scrutinizing paper-based collectionsAFTER a successful mid-year tourof museums and keeping places inthe Lithgow region, conservatorTamara Lavrencic visited the BlueMountains in August to advise onmanagement and treatments forpaper-based objects causingconcern to carers of four localcollections.

As museum programs & collectionsmanager with Museums & Galleriesof NSW, this was anotherfamiliarisation exercise allowingTamara and her colleague –program & collections coordinator,Phoebe Arthur – an occasion tomeet volunteers and sightcollections while offering practicalassistance with artefacts rangingfrom insect-ravaged photographicportraits to early copperplatecorrespondence fading away.

Having spent a fulsome hour at theGlenbrook Historical Society’s newbase then, at a pace, less than sixtyminutes at the vast Mt VictoriaHistorical Society Museum, the

visitors examined items in theVaruna Writers’ Centre beforemoving onto a generous BlueMountains Historical Societyluncheon and a further hoursconsultancy with their collection: thewhirlwind visit culminated in apower-point presentation by Tamaraoffering additional insights topreventative conservation materialsand resources; best museumpractices; and grant opportunities toassist with the caring of paper-based (and other) collection items.

In July, the roving duo fromM&GNSW had spent two daysviewing collections in the Lithgowlocal government area with anintroductory tour of diverse sites –the respected Lithgow State MineHeritage Park, the slowlytransforming Charlie Pinch museumin Portland, charming Rydal villageand Hartley Historic site – whichpreceded a day of a similarconsultancies involving briefoverviews of collections and expertadvice on a variety of challenges

facing Lithgow Small Arms FactoryMuseum, Lithgow Library LocalStudies unit, Esbank House; andthe Lithgow & District Family HistorySociety.

As with the folks in the mountains,an end-of-day summary sessionpresented museum volunteers withmore valuable guidance, and achance to meet Phoebe, an affableand practical M&GNSWadministrator of VIM and otherproject and program grantopportunities …that could benefitconservation, management andinterpretation of collections in thetwo regions? (seewww.mgnsw.org.au)

“The best thing about Tamara’sfriendly, informative visit was theassurance she gave sorting throughour collection and advising where aprofessional conservator should beinvolved,” said manager-curator atEsbank House, Wendy Hawkes.

Continued page 19

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19HERITAGE September - October 2013

Continued from page 18“Then with other objects, sheshowed us how, with often onlyminimal treatment and carefulstorage, our books, photographsand documents could be happilypreserved for ages”.

Doug Knowles from Glenbrook wasvery appreciative of the help andattention their “totally disorganizeddocuments” were given along withvaluable insights to light levelsrequired for storing them.

Jean Winston from Mt Victoria wassurprised gloves were notrecommended for handling paper-based objects and that insecticidesused for marauding insects may doas much harm as the crittersthemselves.

She learnt a great deal aboutarchival storage materials.

Overall, those visited seemed wellpleased with the day-tourconsultancy format, many reelingaway over-loaded with ideas andinformation, but invigorated totackle issues at their museums andkeeping places.


Tamara Lavrencic with Phoebe Arthur at her side, discusses storageand conservation options for recently received school records with

Glenbook Historical Society president Doug Knowles, Mary Knowlesand Pam Pascoe. Photograph by Lynn Collins

For the visitors, who were delightedto meet so many dedicatedmuseum personnel, it was a usefulway to gain an understanding oflocal concerns and scope and stateof a variety of collections.

M&GNSW would be pleased toassist with follow-up workshops,perhaps employing experts in otherdisciplines working with collections:

Lynn Collins Collins, the museumsadviser with both Blue Mountainsandand Lithgow City Councils, isinterested in discussing othersimilar compact events withmuseum volunteers …perhapsinvolving disaster planning aroundbushfires and other local hazards;or pest management; handling andcleaning large-format photographs;maybe caring for furniture andpaintings, which were amongst anumber of suggestions immediatelyarising from these successfulcouple of visits to the regions.

To Register interest or to offer otherproposals, contact Lynn [emailprotected]

DiscussingVaruna archivalmaterial, fromLHS, CEO JansisO’Hanlon,Phoebe Arthur,archivist BarbaraPalmer andTamaraLavrencic.Photograph byLynn Collins

GlenbrookDiscovery —Heritage Walk

SaturdayOctober 19

Doug Knowles4751 3275

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20HERITAGE September - October 2013

by Peter Chinn

The oldest known European grave on the Blue Mountains lies beneatha tree in Springwood cemetery.

AS INITIATIVES in commemoratingthe bicentenaries of the WesternCrossing in 1813 and theconstruction of the Western Road in1814-15 Springwood HistoricalSociety and Springwood Historiansmade representations to BlueMountains City Council for action tobe taken to restore andappropriately mark two significanthistorical relics in Springwood.

The Macquarie monument is anobelisk located on Macquarie Roadabout half a kilometre from the townand marks the approximate locationof the place where GovernorMacquarie and party camped onApril 26,1815 on their waywestwards to the site of Bathurst.

It was here that Macquarie,impressed by the abundance of talltrees and the proximity of springs inthe gullies named the site “SpringWood”.

The first permanent Europeanhabitation (albeit three soldiers) wasestablished in this vicinity inNovember 1815.

This small military depot was set upto control access to the WesternRoad on the orders of the governorin order to prevent unauthorisedsettlement over the Blue Mountains,and to capture runaway convicts.

In 1939 the Royal AustralianHistorical Society erected theMacquarie Monument on a smallpiece of ground – some two metressquare – excised from the adjacentproperty.

A marble plaque with inset leadlettering reads:

Governor Macquarie and hisparty

Camped here on their way toBathurst

On April 27 1815And named the

place“Springwood”William Cox erected here A

military DepotEarly in 1815

Over the years the monument hassuffered deterioration – letteringlost, mortar eroded and generalweathering.

It is surrounded on three sides bydilapidated wooden palings.

Apart from essential restoration itwas felt that this most importantrelic of Springwood’s historywarranted more appropriatesurrounds as well as interpretivesignage as to how it came to beerected – an integral part of itshistory.

Private Francis Smith’sGraveThe oldest known European graveon the Blue Mountains lies beneatha tree in Springwood cemetery –that of Private Francis Smith whodied at Springwood on May 5, 1836.

Smith was a soldier of the 4th

Regiment of Foot (King’s OwnRegiment) which performedgarrison duties in New South Walesfrom 1832 to 1837 and he wasdetached with two other soldiers toman the Springwood military depoton the Western Road.

Private Smith died at the depot fromcauses unrecorded and as there

was no cemetery on the BlueMountains he was buried in thebush near the depot (whichconsisted of a primitive hut).

At this time the depot had beenrelocated from its original site,where the Macquarie monumentnow stands, to a location now thesite of Springwood Mews inFerguson Road.

A headstone bearing the followinginscription was placed on the grave:

In 1878, in response to aParliamentary enquiry, it wasreported that a solitary soldier’sgrave was located near the site ofthe old military post in Springwoodand that the headstone, “ïs brokenand supported by a sapling”.

Sacred to the memory ofFrancis Smith

Who died May 5th 1836Aged 43 yearsHaving servedFor 25 years

As a soldier inH.M. The King’s Own Regt

Restoration of Springwood’s historic monuments

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21HERITAGE September - October 2013

Continued from page 20In 1886 Springwood Cemetery wasestablished and the Church ofEngland portion was in use by1887.

It was probably not long after thisthat the remains of Private Smithwere exhumed and reinterred in thissection of the cemetery (Grave No.91) and marked by the brokenheadstone and intact footstone.

Examination of the grave someyears ago revealed that only thebottom half of the headstone was inplace and that the footstone was intwo pieces on the site.

It was believed that the top part ofthe headstone had been removed tothe council depot but enquiries wereunable to establish that this was afact.

The broken portion of the footstoneremains by the base.

While the grave remains almostforgotten in the cemetery amonument to this earliest of ourEuropean inhabitants was erectedin the small park in the front ofSpringwood Civic Centre in May1990 and unveiled by Brigadier DJMcLachlan, Commander of theSecond Military District, assisted by

15 months old Nathan Dubber ofTweed Heads, Francis Smith’syoungest direct descendant.

As a result of the representationsby Springwood Historical Societyand the Springwood Historians theBlue Mountains City Council wassuccessful in obtaining governmentfunding to undertake remedial andinterpretive work on bothmonuments.

Council has advised that the RoyalAustralian Historical Society haveengaged a contractor to undertakesome maintenance and restorationwork on the Macquarie monumentwhich will involve replacing missinglead lettering, cleaning the plaqueand repointing of the stone work.

In relation to Private Smith’s graveBlue Mountains City Council hasdone a commendable job in puttingin place at the foot of the grave afine sandstone plinth with a brassplaque containing a history ofPrivate Smith and its historicalsignificance.

The Royal Australian HistoricalSociety has also undertaken workon the Macquarie monuments atGlenbrook and Blackheath as partof a broader project

Thomas Hobby makes his mark as Cox takes a‘sickie’, August 1815

THE CURIOUS NAME, Hobby’sReach, the property of BlueMountains Historical Society camefrom the stretch of Cox’s Road (nowBlaxland Road) between c. EdwardParade and the north-west corner ofthe society’s property.

It was completed under thesupervision of Thomas Hobbybetween August 19 and 26, 1814when William Cox was awayrecuperating from a bad cold.

In his journal entry of August 26,Cox wrote: “Arrived at the workingparty at 2pm. Found Mr Hobby well.The road finished during myabsence. Done well.”But a month

by Peter Rickwood PhD So where is the longest stretch ofsealed road?Before dealing with that it isimportant to observe the requirement‘continuous’ as many roads weredrawn on plans to go across valleyswhere those sections were quiteimpractical to construct, so someroad names have been applied totwo or more unjoined sections.

But Megalong Street in Leura is notone of those as it is continuous,andessentially straight from York Street,(in the Katoomba Industrial Estate) toGladstone Road, a distance of 2.26km (1.4 miles).

But is there a longer one ?

The longest essentially straightsection of the Great WesternHighway is in Blackheath, betweenthe south-west corner of WhitleyPark and Ridgewell Road; it is 1.61kilometres in length so exactly 1

mile.ReferenceCox, W. (1901) Memoirs of William Cox,JP Lieutenant and Paymaster of N.S.W.Corps or 102nd. Regiment. Late ofClarendon, Windsor. Sydney andBrisbane: William Brooks & co., Printers.Library of Australian History, FacsimileSeries Number 21, 1979. 149pp. [BMHSREF 203.18] http://acrossthebluemountains.com.au/res-cox.html <Accessed 14 June 2013> alsosee http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks04/0400191.txt <Accessed 14 June 2013>

later on October 3, 1814, he added:“At the 29th mile is a veryhandsome long reach, quitestraight, which I call, from the layerof it out, ‘Hobby’s Reach’.” (Cox1901, p.69).

Thus on Friday, October 3, 2014 itwill be the bicentenary of theassignment of the name and surelyan event that we should celebrate;fortuitously it comes at start of along weekend holiday.

But while being of historicalsignificance that stretch of roadonly has a length of 640 metres(700 yards) and it is by no meansthe longest straight and continuousbit of road in the Blue Mountains.

Japanese culture atNorman Lindsay


Private Smith exhumed

JAPANESE culture will be featuredas two workshops at NormanLindsay Gallery, Faulconbridge onSaturday, October 6.

Commencing at 11am to 12.30pmPatricia Waters, will demonstratethe art of ikebana. The cost of $20includes gallery viewing andrefreshments.

Between 1pm and 2.30pm HayleeHill and Shirley Jenkins willdemonstrate origami and teachpeople of all ages how to makebeautiful paper birds and cranes.Cost: $12.

Bookings for both workshops areessential on 02 4751 1067.

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22HERITAGE September - October 2013

AN IDEA for a project sparked bythe BMACHO museum workshop atMt Victoria Museum has promptedthe setting up of a project group todevelop a Blue Mountains ExplorersTrail map.

Richard Woolley a member of BlueMountains Historical Society was soinspired by the activity that he cameaway from the workshopdetermined to see the developmentand publishing of such a map.

“The mountains has a prolific varietyof scenic wonders which alreadyattract a huge volume of local andinternational tourists bringing touristdollars and recognition,” Richardhas said.

“It also contains a wealth of stateand nationally significant historyand historic places which aresupported by local councils and adiverse group of volunteerorganisations working to promotetheir particular interests.

“The geographical structure of thecommunity means that many ofthese groups are stretched outalong the Great Western Highwayand are focussed mostly andnaturally on their local villagecommunities.

“Tourism, backed and funded bycommercial interests andgovernment, has done a great job inpromoting the region with events,publications and websitescombining the resources of manygroups for greater impact.

Blue Mountains Explorers Trail Map idea

“Heritage and cultural groups havebeen less successful, beingfragmented by their local andlimited volunteer resources but areeager to pool their resources tocreate a co-operative marketingidea which is greater than anyindividual organisation could mount.

“So let’s change this situation, takea leaf out of the tourism push andcombine our resources andinfluence to present a united front tothose who can help fund suchenterprises and to our huge visitortarget audience .

Richard says the idea is toconstruct and promote to all visitorsand potential visitor groups to theBlue Mountains, a visitors’ trail mapwhich connects heritage andcultural groups, interesting andaccessible historical sites (eg:Lennox Bridge or Mt York) withselected cafes, restaurants andaccommodations between EmuPlains and the Lithgow Valley andback down Bells Line of Road to theplains

Designed to be very flexible the trailshould provide for day visits to sitesor organisations, overnight or longer‘short breaks’ as well as contactresources for all other museums,family history groups andcommercial operators that may beidentified on the Cultural ExplorersTrail map.

Primary promotion* A high quality, full colour Trail Map(say A3 folded to A4) distributedthrough all participating museumsand keeping places and through

Glenbrook, Katoomba and Lithgowvisitor centres.

* Promotion on the websites of allBMACHO participating groups.

* Extensive website listings onsector sites (RAHS, MGNSW, CAN)media sponsored sites, TourismNSW, council sites.

* Maybe develop a dedicatedwebsite for the Trail Map.

It will be vital that sites which areshown on the Trail map must bereadily accessible (open) as far aspossible and that those that are notcan be listed in the ExplorerHeritage contact listing.

The instant nature of moderncommunication (internet, Facebookand Twitter) demands thatinformation is accurate and timelyso and for this reason the map mustnot promote inaccessible places.

Funding needed for production willdepend on the details of thedeveloped concept and should aimto be self sufficient from grantsources, commercial contributionsfrom enterprises mentioned on themap, local councils, and membersof the BMACHO group.

The project group comprisingRichard Woolley and BMACHOmanagement committee membersScott Pollock, and Wendy Hawkesand museums adviser, Lynn Collinsare currently working through anumber of options.

Lenox Bridge. Photograph byJohn Leary, OAM November 2011.

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23HERITAGE September - October 2013

READERS MAY well wonder whyhistorians should be concernedabout the progressive reduction intime to travel by railway fromSydney to the Blue Mountains.

The answer lies in the feasibility ofcommuting to the Sydney orParramatta CBD on a daily basis,and how that was really nottolerable prior to 1957 and soaffected the employmentpossibilities for residents and thesocial structure of the villages.

The inevitable protests camefollowing the leaking of a draft of anew railway timetable that is to beintroduced on October 20, 2013 andnow that the final version has beenreleased it is timely to see if thecomplaints are justified.

The residents of the upper BlueMountains have been the mostdeprived of service so I have takenBlackheath as an appropriatestation for this investigation - anextension of one that was printedfive years ago in Hobbys Outreach,(Dec.-January 2008-2009, pp.6-8).

Number of trains.After October 2013 there will be 23trains per weekday, one more thanthere has been since 1993, a gainbut a small one indeed. The newone is to depart Sydney at 11.18amso it fills a two hour gap in theformer timetable.

In future there will be about onetrain per hour but from 1946 until1962 there were only nine per day,and from 1893 until 1910 only three,so we must consider ourselves wellserved by comparison to those whotravelled in the first 100 years ofrailway service.

by Peter C. Rickwood

Railway journeys to the upper Blue Mountains:before and after October 20, 2013

Average travel time - Central toBlackheathPrior to this new schedule, theaverage travel time remainedalmost constant from 1978 but infuture the average time for thatjourney has been reduced by twominutes to 2 hours and 11 minutes.

The most significant speed increaseoccurred in 1957 after electrificationof the line when the average traveltime reduced to below 3 hours.

Pity the residents of earlier yearswho from 1893 until 1957 sufferedaverage travel times of about 3hours and 22 minutes and for somereason those travelling between1918 and 1930 faced even lengthierjourneys averaging 3 hours and 43minutes!

FastestAnd if you are pressed for time justhow quick will it be possible to getto Blackheath?

Under the new schedule thequickest journey will be 2 hours and5 minutes or two minutes longerthan earlier this year!

However there has been littlechange for 50 years and mostlythose quick journeys were at around5.15pm.

ConvenienceGetting to work in Sydney by 7amwill necessitate catching a train atBlackheath at 4.21am, and for an8.00am start being on the station at5.44am and for a 9am start therelevant train leaves at 6.44am.

Those departure times are a littlelater than under the currenttimetable so there will be a fewmore minutes in bed for thosecommuters!

For the upper Blue Mountainsresidents working in Sydney therewill be three trains departing Centralbetween 4 and 5pm, two in the nexthour and two between 6 and 7pm.

In each of those periods one traindeparts in the first half of an hour sothose leaving work on the hourshould find the new servicesatisfactory.

Whether there will be adequateseating for all of the commuters isanother matter altogether.

Getting to work in Parramatta by7am necessitates catching a train atBlackheath at 4.51am, and for8.00am and 9.00am starts theappropriate trains depart at 6.14amand 7.12am respectively.

Again a few more minutes of sleepthan commuters currently get.

Making the return journey homefrom Parramatta should not be tooawkward for there will be two trainsbetween 4 and 5pm that go throughto Blackheath, two in the next hourand two between 6 and 7pm.

ConclusionAfter October 20, 2013 not a lot willbe changing as far as the upperBlue Mountains railway travellersare concerned.

Commuting to work at eitherSydney or Parramatta will remainarduous but marginally less so thanit has been earlier this year.

So there is little to fear as a result ofthe new timetable - but commutersatisfaction is likely to bedependent on • the adequacy of seating -which is only a problem whentravelling westwards. • the cleanliness of thecarriages.

• punctuality.

Locomotive No 1 brings to life theage of steam travel, which began

in 1855 when this verylocomotive hauled New South

Wales’ first train. Image courtesyPowerHouse MuseumA contemporary drawing of

Stephen’s Rocket (1829) theworld’s first modern steam


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THE ORGANISATION Blue Mountains Association ofCultural Organisations Inc. (BMACHO) was establishedin April 2006 following a unanimous response to aproposal from Professor Barrie Reynolds at the 2004Blue Mountains Local History Conference which soughtfrom Blue Mountains City Council the creation of acultural heritage strategy for the city.BMACHO in its constitution uses the definition: “Culturalheritage is all aspects of life of the peoples of the BlueMountains which was later changed to cover Lithgow andthe villages along the Bell’s Line of Roads. It thereforeinvolves the recording, preserving and interpreting ofinformation in whatever form: documents, objects,recorded memories as well as buildings and sites.”The objectives of the organisation are:

i. To raise public consciousness ofthe value of cultural heritage. ii. To encourage and assist culturalheritage activities of member organisations. iii. To initiate and support culturalheritage activities not already covered bymember organisations. One of the aims of BMACHO isto bring the various bodies into closer contact, toencourage them to work more closely together and toprovide a combined voice on matters of importancewithin the heritage sector.

AFFILIATIONS BMACHO is a member of the RoyalAustralian Historical Society Inc.

MEMBERSHIP The following organisations are members ofBMACHO: Blue Mountains Botanic Garden, Mount Tomah,Blue Mountains City Library, Blue Mountains Cultural HeritageCentre, Blue Mountain Education and Research Trust, BlueMountains Historical Society Inc., Blue Mountains FamilyHistory Society Inc., Blue Mountains World Heritage Institute,Eskbank Rail Heritage Centre, Everglades Historic House &Gardens, Friends of Norman Lindsay Gallery, Glenbrook &District Historical Society Inc., Hartley Valley District ProgressAssociation, Kurrajong-Comleroy Historical Society Inc,Lithgow and District Family History Society Inc., LithgowMining Museum Inc., Lithgow Regional Library – LocalStudies, Lithgow Small Arms Factory Museum Inc, Mt Victoriaand District Historical Society Inc., Mt Wilson and Mt IrvineHistorical Society Inc. (including Turkish Bath Museum),Mudgee Historical Society Inc., National Trust of Australia(NSW) - Blue Mountains Branch, National Trust of Australia(NSW) - Lithgow Branch, Scenic World – Blue MountainsLimited, Springwood & District Historical Society Inc.,Springwood Historians Inc., Transport Signal andCommunication Museum Inc., The Darnell Collection Pty Ltd,Valley Heights Locomotive Depot and Museum, WoodfordAcademy Management Committe, Zig Zag Railway Co-op Ltd.The following are individual members: Ray Christison,Associate Professor Ian Jack, Joan Kent, John Leary OAM,John Low OAM, Ian Milliss, Patsy Moppett, Professor BarrieReynolds, Dr Peter Rickwood and Dr Peter Stanbury OAM.

COMMITTEE The committee for 2013-14 is:John Leary, OAM (president), Ian Jack (vice president),Jan Koperberg (secretary), Kevin Frappell, Wendy Hawkes,Doug Knowles, Patsy Moppett, Dick Morony (public officer),Scott Pollock and Jean Winston.

DISCLAIMER Views and opinions expressed inHERITAGE originate from many sources and contributors.Every effort is taken to ensure accuracy of material. Contentdoes not necessarily represent or reflect the views andopinions of BMACHO, its committee or members. If errors arefound feedback is most welcome.


REGISTERED OFFICE 1/19 Stypandra Place,Springwood, 2777 (02) 4751 5834E-mail:[emailprotected] [emailprotected]: www.bluemountainsheritage.comABN53 994 839 952

HERITAGE BMACHO’s official newsletter is editedby John Leary, OAM.Blue Mountains History Journal is edited byDr Peter Rickwood.

ONE WOULD BE forgiven forthinking Coca Cola were first in thefield of fizzy drinks

Forget Coca Cola. Schweppes is thereal pioneer of the fizzy drink.

In 1783 a young Swiss watchmakerand keen amateur scientist, JacobSchweppes (1740 - 1821), becamethe first person to perfect aneconomical process for makingcarbonated mineral water, muchloved by the gentry and widelyadministered by doctors to cure avariety of ailments including indiges-tion and gout.

It was described as a “safe andcooling drink for persons exhaustedby much speaking, heated bydancing or crowded assemblies”.

He perfected a way of capturing andbottling bubbles (the process ofcarbonation).

The addition of carbon dioxide wasconsidered at the time, to havemedicinal properties.

He founded Schweppes in Genevathe same year, 1783, and withinseven years had expanded intoEngland with a factory in DruryLane, London.

Erasmus Darwin, the grandfather ofCharles Darwin began talking up thebeverage, which started to becomepopular. In 1831, King William IV ofEngland adopted the beveragewhich could then use the famous “byappointment of”.

In 1798, Jacob retired and sold mostof his interest in the company tothree men.

In exchange, he revealed to thepartners, ’ the whole art, mysteryand process of making and compos-ing artificial mineral waters’.

The company introduced fizzylemonade in 1831, the success of

which led to a flood of otherflavoured fizzy drinks. The mostfamous was Schweppes TonicWater, introduced in the 1870s.

The company continued to expandgeographically with factoriesopening around the world with thebrand being a popular drink through-out the world until this day.

In 1877, the Schweppes brandarrived in Australia with the firstfactory built in Sydney.

So its a sure bet that if you have hada gin and tonic, a whisky and soda,

a mineral water or a gingerale therefreshingcarbonatedwaters havebeenenjoyedthanks toyoungwatchmaker,JacobSchweppes.

Fizzy soda waters much loved by the gentrysince 1783

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What fossils were found in Canowindra? ›

Canowindra fossils

The fauna is dominated by two species of antiarch placoderms (armoured fishes), Bothriolepis and Remigolepis (97% of the fauna). Groenlandaspis, an arthrodiran placoderm, is much rarer, with only about 50 specimens recovered.

What is Canowindra famous for? ›

Known as the hot air balloon capital of Australia – more flights are said to take place here annually than anywhere else in the country – the historic village of Canowindra is home to airborne adventures, acclaimed vineyards, fascinating colonial history and a unique collection of prehistoric fossils.

Where are jawless fish fossils found? ›

A wealth of fossils discovered in southern China shed new light onto the diversity of jawed and jawless fish during the Silurian period, more than 400 million years ago.

What was the first jawed fish? ›

Placoderms were the first jawed fish; their jaws likely evolved from the first of their gill arches.

What river is Canowindra on? ›

Situated on the Belubula River, Canowindra (pronounced /kəˈnaʊndrə/ kə-NOWN-drə) is a historic township and the largest population centre in Cabonne Shire. The town is located between Orange and Cowra in the central west of New South Wales, Australia.

Why did the SA government buy the fossil site and the land around it? ›

A $1 billion (USD), nature fund has been used to buy a vast tract of outback South Australia containing some of the oldest animal fossils on Earth. The acquisition safeguards an extremely important fossil site and helps support the Australian Government's plans to gain World Heritage Site status for the area.

Is Canowindra a good place to live? ›

Canowindra - a great place to live. Canowindra is situated between Orange and Cowra and has maintained a charmingly friendly small-town atmosphere with just under 3,000 people.

Where did they film Morse in Australia? ›

Locations: Tail credit: "Filmed on location in England and Australia. With special thanks to the inhabitants of Cowra and Canowindra, NSW." The town of Canowindra and its main street provide the bulk of the NSW rural establishing locations - the town is renamed as Hereford for the purposes of the show.

Does it flood in Canowindra? ›

Following the devastating flooding that was experienced at Canowindra in November 2022, Cabonne Council has secured funding from the NSW Government to undertake a review and update of the existing flood risk management study and plan for the township.

What is the oldest fossil fish? ›

Haikouichthys, from about 518 million years ago in China, may be the earliest known fish.

What is ostracoderm? ›

ostracoderm, an archaic and informal term for a member of the group of armoured, jawless, fishlike vertebrates that emerged during the early part of the Paleozoic Era (542–251 million years ago).

What fish have no jaw life on our planet? ›

Of the great diversity of primitive jawless fish, only two types of jawless fish survive today: hagfish (also known as slime eels, about 60 species) and lampreys. Both are very derived and are not equivalent to their Paleozoic ancestors.

What was the first animal on Earth? ›

The First Animals

Sponges were among the earliest animals. While chemical compounds from sponges are preserved in rocks as old as 700 million years, molecular evidence points to sponges developing even earlier.

What was the first fish with legs called? ›

Tiktaalik (/tɪkˈtɑːlɪk/; Inuktitut ᑎᒃᑖᓕᒃ [tiktaːlik]) is a monospecific genus of extinct sarcopterygian (lobe-finned fish) from the Late Devonian Period, about 375 Mya (million years ago), having many features akin to those of tetrapods (four-legged animals).

Where is the oldest fish in the world? ›

Methuselah, the World's Oldest Living Aquarium Fish, Could Be More Than 100. In November 1938, an Australian lungfish named Methuselah arrived at San Francisco's Steinhart Aquarium aboard an ocean liner. At that time, the United States was just recovering from the Great Depression.

What fossils were found in Joshua Tree? ›

Did you know Joshua Tree was once home to Columbian mammoths, saber-toothed cats, dire wolves, giant ground sloths, horses, camels, and llamas?

What fossils were found in San Diego County? ›

In San Diego, Carlsbad, and Oceanside, we have unearthed California's richest record of 40- to 50-million-year-old fossils of early bats, rodents, hedgehogs, primates, carnivores, tapirs, brontotheres, and camels.

What fossils were found in the Green River? ›

Although most of the fossils collected from the Green River Formation (GRF) are fishes, many other organisms have been found including crocodilians, lizards, snakes, birds, bats, small horses, amphibians, gastropods, crustaceans, and insects.


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