Thursday, November 28, 2013

Elizabeth Marching Girls

Elizabeth Marching Girls
The sport was introduced into Australia in 1946 by a resident of Tamworth New South Wales.  Teams soon sprang up in many towns in others NSW and Newcastle.  The sport spread to Western Australia in 1952, Tasmania in 1956, South Australia 1957.  The first team in SA was known as the ‘Scarlet Leprechauns', formed in Penola.  In 1962 there were 200 teams in the state.
The first marching teams were formed in Elizabeth in October 1958, when the Elizabeth sub-branch of the Returned Soldiers League sponsored the formation of two teams. From this beginning the RSL Elizabethan Marching Girls Club consisted of five teams, known as the ‘Raleigh’s’ (Seniors), ‘Cavaliers’ and Windsor’s (Junior) and ‘Brigadiers and ‘Grenadiers’ (Midgets). 

The chairman of the RSL Elizabethans in 1962 was Mr A. Hemley.
A team consists of an Instructor, Chaperone and up to 14 girls including reserves, but only 9 girls and a leader take part in the competition for displays.  Team decisions are made only by the vote of all team members. 

Teams from Elizabeth have travelled to Melbourne, Mt Gambier, Pt Pirie, Renmark and Barmera to compete and give displays.  Team contests were held during the Elizabeth Birthday celebrations  as part of the North Metropolitan Zone of the South Australian Marching Girls Association , held on Ridley Road, Reserve, Elizabeth.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Agricuture in Munno Para

Agriculture expanded very rapidly in the decade or so that followed the beginnings of large-scale settlement. By 1856, 20,000 acres of land in the Munno Para Councils were planted with wheat. (Munno Para East 6000 of 40,000 acres under wheat. Munno Para West almost 15,000 of 25,000).

In contrast to Munno Para West, Munno Para East was a sparsely occupied district. It was, already by the beginning of the 1860s however, pasturing a large number of sheep and cattle (there were over 4000 sheep in 1861), an activity which was to continue to expand during the following decades.

Between 1871 and 1881 the number of sheep and lambs increased from about 6500 to over 20,000 while at the same time the amount of land devoted to wheat growing declined, form about 7000 acres to just over 2200 acres.

Playford Historical Society

Earlier this year a meeting was held to see if a historical society could be established in  Playford.  We had enough interest to form a standing committee and over the past few months have been developing the idea further. 

We will start meetings in February 2014, and formally launch the society in History Month 2014.  There is still lots to do and we are looking for more helpers. For more details read the new page  about the society on this blog .

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Early roads in the district

Transport was an important subject in the 1850’s as it affected the everyday life of the people in terms by reducing their isolation and facilitating the movement of goods and produce. The Munno Para district, had few good roads. Many were no more than mere tracks subject to the vagaries of the weather. Little could be done about these, by councils which had very little money or manpower, so that the ‘main road’ linking the district to Adelaide became the focus of most commercial movement. The Great North Road to Gawler was important as all traffic to the northern districts beyond Gawler used it, for example the copper mines at Kapunda and The Burra.
The Road became even more significant after the opening up of the mid-north to agricultural cultivation in the 1870s. The other main route form Adelaide was the road to Port Wakefield where a harbour was opened in 1850 to which copper form the Burra mine could be conveyed for shipment. It does not appear to have been a major line of communication until somewhat later in the nineteenth century.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

TROVE Tuesday - Long Range Weapons

26 June 1954, Advertiser

TROVE Tuesday


The Smithfield Dramatic Club are to make another appearance in the Gawler Institute Hall on Monday, February 13, in aid of the Hutchinson Hospital.  On two previous occasions this club have appeared in Gawler to crowded houses, and they are also favorites in the districts of Smithfield, Virginia, Williamstown, and Wasleys, where they are always greeted with bumper audiences. The Smithfield folk, under their stage manager and director, Mr, H. S. Featherstone, always work in the cause of charity, and on Monday next their effort will be to supplement the fund to raise money to erect an over way between the main hospital and the Maternity Block; for at present the nurses and attendants have to cross an open space in all sorts of weather.  The piece to be staged is 'Her Heart's Desire,' a comedy in three acts, and which has been splendidly greeted wherever presented.

The Bunyip 17 February 1928

Friday, November 15, 2013

Memories of Smithfield Hostel

Some more memories of Smithfield Hostel from an unpublished history of Playford.

Mr. H. Wright who arrived at Port Adelaide in August 1958 on board the P. & O. ship “Straithhaird” with his wife and two year old son recollected that from Port Adelaide.

We were taken by bus (Bulls Hire Coaches) on what
seemed a journey to nowhere, for after we passed Gepps Cross
there was nothing but paddocks until we reached the Hostel at
Smithfield. Our first impressions of Smithfield Hostel was that of
a displaced persons camp. Rows of Nissen huts, set in the middle
of nowhere, surrounded by a wire fence, it even had gates at the
entrance. Our first thoughts were “what have we come to?”

Mrs. D. Scales of Elizabeth West writes that:

We came over by air in 1965. It cost us 10 pound each, children free.
Most of the information we received was very misleading. My husband
and brother-in-law had the idea that they would be able to build housed
of wood which would be laying around. We expected to see wild animals
running around. All we saw were fields full of thistles. We came over to
Adelaide from Melbourne in a tiny old plane and were so disappointed
to see tin roofs. It was stinking hot. The Good Neighbour people met us
at Adelaide and welcomed us. There we were put on a buds bound for
Elizabeth. Half way here it broke down so we had to take all the cases
off and wait for a relief bus to be sent. More fields of thistles also some
dirty brown sheep. English sheep are white. We looked everywhere for
a tap to get a drink of water. It was 108 degrees in the shade and my
husband wanted to go home. He didn’t like the thistles. We were all
wearing our winter woollies. I didn’t think I’d be able to breathe.
When we reached the hostel it was evening. But we straight away
found a meal.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Elizabeth has real community spirit

Channel 9 news recently did a story on Elizabeth, how it has changed over time. Rob Kelvin interviewed Dorothy Joel, aged 92  who still lives in her original Elizabeth home.  They moved in, in January 1959.  She said it was a very friendly community and that they loved it.  Dorothy believes the community spirit is still alive in Elizabeth.  What are your thoughts on this?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Post a memory

Recently people were asked to write a memory about Elizabeth on the back of a postcard, this is what some wrote.

The days (and nights) when you could go to bed with the doors and windows unlocked.

I remember moving from the hostel into Elizabeth Downs, we had neighbours of English, Dutch, Australian origin and our family from Glasgow, it was a wonderful place to grow up and live with many wonderful memories.  I saw the Queen on Hamblyn road.  It was an experience I will never forget.

The fun of the Birthday celebrations are sadly missed.

My wife and I first lived in Goodwood rd, Elizabeth South.  The roads weren't sealed, there was alot of mud, but great community spirit with the early settlers.

What memories do you have of the area?

Hairy Mancestors

In support of Movember, Inside History magazine are asking people to share photos of their moustached ancestors to help raise funds for men’s health. For each “hairy mancestor” posted, Inside History will donate 50c to the Movember cause.

To share your photos of your hairy mancestors, simply “Like” the Inside History Movember Facebook page and post your photo. Include their name, story and the approximate date of the photo.

For each hairy mancestor posted, Inside History will donate 50c to Movember. To increase the donation to $1, post a current pic of yourself (or partner, brother, father, son etc) sporting a similarly fabulous moustache alongside your ancestor’s photo so we can see the resemblance.

Everyone who uploads a photo of their ancestor will go into the draw to win one of two World Heritage Memberships. So what are you waiting for?

Upload your hairy mancestor today!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Remembering our local Anzacs

The State Library will be undertaking a Centenary of ANZAC initiative around the forthcoming Remembrance Day on Monday, November 11.

We invite local communities across the State to contribute images of South Australians who served during WW1 – particularly their ancestors or other relatives -  and also help us identify the unknown South Australians whose pictures are already in our collections.
Add your pictures to the State Library’s Flickr set, South Australians of WW1: Share their Story, see for the details. There is a story featured in the news column on our home page, with a link to our South Australians of WW1 Library Guide  which includes instructions on how to access Flickr.