Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Christmas in Virginia 1909



The early Mass at the Church of the Assumption on Christmas Day was attended by the whole of the Catholics of the district. Some came a distance of 14 miles from Red Banks, Two Wells, Lower Light, and Penfield, and long before the large bell of the church rang forth the glad tidings that a Redeemer had been born, the congregation had assembled. At 6 o'clock Father Aylward commenced Mass.  He was in the confessional from 5 o'clock.  Everyone present approached Holy Communion.  It was most edifying to see such a large number at confession and Communion at such an early hour.

The church was neatly decorated with green boughs. Two artistic arches of pine and other green foliage were erected, one near the communion rail and the other entering the seats. The high altar had been adorned, as also the Virgin's altar, with flowers obtained specially for the Christmas Mass.  Miss Sheedy attended to the church decorations, assisted by a few other young ladies.

The choir sang special music. The "Adeste Fidele " and other Christmas hymns were well rendered, and Webb's Mass was sung in unison. Two parts were taken. The choir sang as one voice. The full strength of the choir, with, a lady member of St. Saviour's, Brompton, assisted. Miss Ryan was the organist. Miss Aherne and Miss Maloney's voices were well harmonised, while Mr. Ryan's tenor nicely blended.

Father Aylward after performing his duties at the Virginia Church, had to drive to Gawler, a distance of 13 miles, and say two Masses, with confessions and other sacred duties.  It was most trying on the rev. Father, but the weather was nice and cool, and the air very bracing, which added much to the festive and joyous character of Yuletide.

Southern Cross 8 Jan 1909

Wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas & New Year.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Memorial Reserves in the City of Playford

I drive past the Jesse Taylor Memorial Reserve on Peachey Road, Munno Para at least once a month.  Every time I see the sign I wonder who was Jesse Taylor, and think to myself, I must find out who she is.  Of course by the time I get back to work I  forget until the following month when I drive past the sign.  It wasn't until two residents came into the Library to ask the same question that I did actually look into it, and other Memorial Reserves in the City of Playford.

Horrie Knight Reserve
Balmoral Circuit and Cherrytree Cres, Blakeview
Horace (Horrie) Raymond Knight was a resident of One Tree Hill, he was involved with the Munno Para Rotary Club and Elizabeth and Districts foundation.  He was actively involved with Rotary and was instrumental in setting up the Elizabeth foundation, whose aim was to raise funds for all charitable causes in Elizabeth and Munno Para areas.  As a prominent local business man he helped local youth find employment. Horrie was well known for giving financial and physical support to individuals and groups in the area.

Elizabeth Rotary President 1974.  Winner of Paul Harris Fellowship in 1979.
Citizen of the Year in 1976.

He was awarded at OAM in 1990 for his services to charitable organisations.
Elizabeth & District Foundation set up a memorial award to honour Horrie, who was a founding member and longest serving member.
Died of cancer on June 6th, 1990 (age 74).  Wife Laurel.

Anne Wright Reserve 
Laverton Street, Dowlish St, Stocklinch Cres (Orginially named Stocklinch Reserce after Stocklinch in Wiltshire and Dorset, Davoren Park.
Born 1942 – 2000 (58 years)

Over ten years service on the management committees of Davoren Community Centre, Elizabeth and Munno Para Together Against Crime, Munno Para City Festival, Northern Plains Garden Club, West Action Group, Self-help garden project, SAHT Tennant Management Committee, Smithfield Plains School Council, Australia Day Committee and Stebonheath Park Committee.  She was Co-ordinator of Safety Houses of the Northern Plains.  Co-coordinator Second Hand Rose opportunity shop at Elizabeth West.  She was a Justice of the Peace.
Munno Para Citizen of the Year in 1995.  Anne and husband Gerald were the first prize winners of the 1993 Housing Trust Tenants Garden Competition for best garden in Elizabeth West.

She was a friend to many, known to help locals with any issue, described as ‘matriach of the area’ (Ann Brown NACYS Team leader)
Jessie Taylor Reserve

Outspoken anti-crime activist, passed away aged 73 in 1993.  She was a founding member of the Northern Area Activist Group and was instrumental in the campaign against a proposed needle exchange program.   She was well known for her beliefs in curbing crime, increasing police presence and upgrading the Lyell McEwin Hospital.  She spoke to the Premier to discuss northern issues and news streets for the Virginia market garden area.  In 1991 she was named Munno Para Council’s Australia Day Citizen of the Year. 
Survived by five children.  Husband Walter.

Harold Wissell Reserve    Smithfield
Harold George Wissell, Councillor of Munno Para 1985 – 1989 (Plains Central Ward), Deputy Mayor 1987 – 1989.  Council representative on Smithfield Plains Primary School Council, Munno Para Health Service, Nuclear Free Zones, Administration Community Services, Sub committee of Senior Citizens, Community Development.  Member of the Safety House scheme.  

Pete Smith Reserve     Davoren Park
Elizabeth Police Officer died 1986.  Served in Elizabeth for 18 years as a patrol officer and worked at the Elizabeth Police Station.

Brian Coward Reserve Blakeview
Councillor District Council of Munno Para 1981 – 1993. Council Representative on the Munno Para Community Development Board, Elizabeth & Districts Foundation, Neighbourhood Watch.   Council representative on Smithfield Memorial Park Authority (Chairman), Para Districts CFS, Para Districts Bushfire Prevention Committee, Craigmore Munno Para management committee.  Founder member and Life member of North Downs Residents Association Inc.

Jo Gapper Park     Hillbank

Councillor, District Council of MP 1980 – 1995 (Blair Park Ward).  Munno Para’s first elected Mayor from 1985 – 1995.  Council representative on Craigmore Y; Craigmore High School; Royal District Nursing Society; Elizabeth West Neighbourhood Centre, Elizabeth & District Foundation.  Chairman Munno Para CFS; Hon Sec Munno Para Greening Committee.  Chairman Para Districts Justices group. Secretary Women’s Local Government Association.
Resided at Hillbank.

Don Hardy Reserve     Davoren Park
Lived in Elizabeth West. Founding member of the Munno Para Youth Club. Involved in community development board and the Munno Para City Festival . Married with four children. Ran own business in Davoren Park, Hardy Motors.
 

Monday, December 7, 2015

The Mayes family of Angle Vale

 
Levi, a year before his death
Levi Mayes migrated with his parents, brothers and sisters from Bedfordshire, England, where he was born on 7 June 1849. He arrived in the colony on the ship Catherine in 1851.

The family first went to live in Bolivar, but sometime later they all moved to Salisbury, where in 1867 Levi married Fanny Brooks in St John Anglicans church. Fanny Brooks was the daughter of George and Sarah nee CARN. Their first child was born later that same year.

In 1869, Levi and his small family moved to Virginia renting a cottage just 3km north of the township, the children as they came attended the Virginia State School.

After working for a time in the Burra Mine, he took up employment as a teamster with Hogarth and Warren of Smithfield, carrying stores to their station property at Strangways Springs in the Northern Territory. His original list of watering holes still exists. The journey took six weeks one way through some lonely and inhospitable country, covering maybe 10 to 12 miles per day and mostly camping on the tracks. It is probable that at times he brought down wool and hides as back loading on the return trip.


A page from Levi's notebook
In 1894 his family having grown to seven he decided to remain in the immediate distinct. A notebook in which he recorded his working life during their period shows that he worked variously at fencing, sheep shearing, splitting posts, general farm labouring, grave digging, cracking stones for roads and boring for water.

He hired out to anyone in the district and most have been well sought after as his notebook shows that he was always in work until 1915 when his record keeping ceased.

Started shearing for Lawson on Tuesday October third 3 (1899)
Finished on the 10
159 sheep at one pound per hundred
Splitting post for Mr Ridgway on the 22 of January 1900
Finished on the 28 of February 763 posts
Breaking stone of the 4 of March for Main road (1901)
2 March (1903) dug a grave for Mrs T Johns
Boring for A baker finished in the 19th of Sept 11days 100 feet deep (1905)


He was then 66 years of age but apparently could still keep up the best of the. His remaining years were spent labouring for him Munno Para West District Council.

Levi died suddenly in 13 November 1919 of varicose ulcer on the upper right leg in the Adelaide Hospital; and was buried at St John’s church, Salisbury.

Upon his death in 1919 the Advertiser recorded his passing;

Mr L Mayes, who died at Adelaide on November 21, was an old and respected resident of the Virginia district and one of the early pioneers. He was born at Souldrope in Bedfordshire and came to Australia with his parents when hw was two years of age in 1851. The family went to live at Bolivar near Virginia and afterwards at Salisbury. Mr Mayes was employed for may years by Messrs Hogarth & Warren in carrying stores from Smithfield, to their station at Strangeways Station a six week trip and made many long and dangerous journeys through the … in drought stricken … He made several visits to the Northern Territory and was well acquainted with the northern area. Mr Mayes and his family have lived in the Virginia district for nearly 50 years. He died suddenly at the age of 70 years.

 
 

Monday, November 30, 2015

Elim Bible Christian Church & Cemetery

A small church, school and cemetery existed for 20 years in the Peachey Belt area.  No visible trace can be seen today and not much information can be found on its history.  Here is what we know.
The Elim Bible Christian Church stood on the corner of Huxtable and Short roads to the immediate west of Direk railway siding, on part section 4264.  The church had a small cemetery and a school functioned here for a short time.
Erected during the time of S. Keen’s residence on Gawler Plains and opened on February 22nd 1857 by Mr James Rowe and Mr T Keen, Bible Christian Ministers. 

It was erected at a cost £360 in 1857 thanks to an interest free loan from George Fife Angas who had encouraged the settlers to come here.  £200 was borrowed from Angas with the promise to repay £100 in two years and £100 three years after date.  No interest charged.
The main family associated with this church was the Taylor family. Other names that have appeared in relation to the church are Joseph Ashton, Hillman, A Burford, T Hatcher, Parr, Andrews, Trewin, Thomas Shutter, H Heaslip, Patterson. Ward trustee of the chapel.
In 1853 Reverend Samuel Keen arrived in Gawler on Bible Christian mission work and within a few years he had opened a dozen Bible Christian churches across the plains. The governance structure of the Primitive Methodist and the Bible Christian churches encouraged this.  Local families could decide they wanted a church, usually with the urging of Rev. Keen, or someone else. Then they donated land and money to erect the church which was usually built by the men in the community. No church hierarchy permission or bishop approval was needed. People just got on and did it.

The church circuit was based at Angle Vale, the other closest church was Zoar on Argent road, Penfield.
The small burial grounds next to the church disappeared over time. Elim had a small school attached. It was a vigorous congregation but land settlement patterns changed and the church declined in numbers and closed in 1879. The land was sold in 1890. One of the Taylor sons, Sam became a lay preacher by the time he was 18 years old and preached for another 77 years until he was 95. Other sons moved on to establish the Bible Christian church in Kulpara, near Port Wakefield. Another family, the Wait family who worshipped at Elim moved north near Redbanks and helped established Eden Bible Christian church there in 1875.

A marriage between Bryan McHugh and Christina McGagnor was recorded in the newspaper in 1866.  Bryan’s father was John a farmer at Peachey Belt.
Only a few burials took place in the cemetery, probably on 5 or 6, as the ground proved to be unsuitable for internments, due to a high water table.

Reference has been found to John Davies buried in the cemetery on 20 August 1866.  John drowned in the Gawler River five days previously trying to cross the high river in a dray that overturned.
A grant received by the Adelaide Cemetery Trust in 1932 allowed a fence to be erected around the graveyard.  One source states that the headstones were placed against the fence at one time when the land was being used as a polo field[i].

Church building was demolished and furniture sold 1879.

Elim school
Teachers
1857 - 1858        Josiah Rogers
1864 – 1874       Sparkhall Robinson

1863 – 1864       Samuel Davie
Some difficulty in conducting school as it was not supported by its neighbours on account of being disappointed by the teachers.  



Year

Boys

Girls

Total

1857     

 

 

23

1865

14

10

24

1866

17

13

30

1867

20

15

35

1868

16

12

28

1869

19

8

27

Monday, November 23, 2015

WWI project


When a history project is embarked upon, it can sometimes seem that there is no end.  Three years ago, two City of Playford Local history volunteers began researching WWI soldier that was identified with a connection to the area.  This week, Pam and Dave (husband and wife) finished researching the 165 soldiers and 2 nurses. 

They started with a surname and initial, most were straight forward, but a few Smiths made life difficult.  Some names appeared on local war memorials but didn't seem to have a local connection.  Detective work was needed to establish a connection. 

The main resources used were the digitised WWI soldier records from the National Archives of Australia.  Further research was undertaken through Australian War Memorial, AIF project, WWI pictorial honour roll, SA Red Cross Information Bureau, RSL virtual war memorial, Flickr and from our own history collection. 

Each week a typed family history and war service records was presented with research notes, that will become part of our City's history.

Thankyou Pam & Dave for your wonderful work, it will become an integral part of the City of Playford's history.

www.naa.gov.au
www.awm.gov.au
https://sarcib.ww1.collections.slsa.sa.gov.au/about
http://www.ww1anzac.com/
http://www.aif.adfa.edu.au
https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/

Monday, November 16, 2015

Elizabeth turns 60




















Elizabeth was officially inaugurated on 16th November 1955 by the Premier Sir Thomas Playford.   Today, Elizabeth turns 60.

The concept, design and implementation of the city that became Elizabeth, was a Housing Trust initiative which included unusual and ground breaking features.  These features included the Housing Trust not only building homes for people, but in addition building the required schools (first-ever Trust built school – Elizabeth South Primary 1956), shops (first Trust built shops at Elizabeth – Elizabeth South Goodman Rd 1954), hospital (Lyell McEwin Hospital, Elizabeth Grove 1959) and even factories (first-ever Trust built factory – Pinnock Manufacturing Co. Ltd. 1957).

 The Housing Trust’s 1950’s concept of creating communities, involved the creation of a community from the ground up – from 3,872 acres of initial farmland, to a thriving post-modern metropolis, Elizabeth, the city of tomorrow.

On the 50th anniversary of the City, Mayor Marilyn Baker read this poem written by well renowned local author Max Fatchen on Elizabeth.


A city grows
At high tea let me raise a cup
I have seen a city growing up
Its’ had its joys its’ had it woes
For that’s the way a city grows.


The farm land which I tried to till
they banished me through lack of skill,
and where the crops grew tall and thick,
a city rose each brick by brick.

The Councillors with furrowed brow,
had wondered what he wanted now.
They made the roads, they set the rates
and cheered the Bulldogs, all our mates.
The migrants came and some forlorn,
then fresh hope and dreams reborn.
For that’s the way a lifestyle goes
and that’s the way a city grows.

The changing times that made us fret,
the mobile phone the internet.

Theatres, churches, people praying,
trees and parks and children playing.
The pattering of little feet
as young life grew in each new street.


Consider then this verse well meant,
penned by a long term resident.
I have my pride, I hope it shows,
for dwelling where this city grows.
I fill my cup and make it strong
to toast the place where I belong.

Max Fatchen

Monday, November 2, 2015

The Vectormen



The Vectormen

Formed in Adelaide, South Australia in 1960, when they played at local dances such as the Matelot Club.  The group consisted of Pete Burrowes, Frank Tarney, Bob Harris & Derek 'Digs' Whitwell. Frank's younger brother Alan Tarney was to later join the band on bass.
The group broke up when Pete Borrows and drummer ‘Digs’ Whitwell left the band.  Although disbanding in 1964.

Mainly playing in Adelaide clubs and backing a vocal trio named "The Twilights".
Alan Tarney went on to become a part of the duo "Tarney and Spencer" with Trevor Spencer in England and would later record & tour with "The Shadows".
He eventually became known as a composer/producer for many but mainly for Cliff Richard with songs such as "We Don't Talk Anymore" and many more.

Members included
David Reekes-Parsons - Vocals
Kevin ‘Wilf ' Steele – Vocals, formerly with the Hurricanes acclaimed as SA top guitarist.
Alan Tarney - Keyboards, Bass Guitar
Frank Tarney - Rhythm Guitar lives in Elizabeth Grove and by day a draughtsman with British Tube Mills.
Bob Harris - Bass Guitar
Peter Burrows - Guitar
Derek "Digs" Whitwell - Drums

Friday, October 23, 2015

Elizabeth bands of the 1960's

John E Broome and the Handles

Formed in Adelaide, 1964, disbanded 1966.
Probably one of the first so called super groups to come out of Adelaide.

The Adelaide based group mainly from the northern suburbs of Adelaide played at "The Octagon" and the "Salisbury Youth Centre" weekly in Elizabeth during the mid sixties.
Members included
Johnny Broome alias David Parsons (The Moose)  - Vocalist
Kevin Peek – Guitar.
Laurie Pryor – Drums, formerly with the Spartans. 
Alan Tarney - Bass

The group left for England in November 1965.  They played at many venues in England, one noted venue was "The Maque Club", a well established venue where most artists frequented.
Laurie Pryor wrote the song "Young Girl" on the ship on the way to England which was later recorded by "The Twilights" when he was with the them in 1967.

The Handels records include.
Do's And Dont's / Didn't Know Her Name.- Released May 1965.

Both of these songs were written by Alan Tarney. Side B, vocals by Alan Tarney. The song reached number 41 in 5DN's Big 60 for four weeks.
With the group disbanding most went separate ways.
Kevin Peek later joined the group "Sky" which became a world wide success.
Alan Tarney, originally from England in which he returned to England and recorded with Trevor Spencer, an Adelaide drummer as "Tarney and Spencer".
The duo had minor success and later Alan Tarney would become successful in writing songs for Cliff Richard and other major artists.
Alan also played for some time with "The Shadows".

The Vikings
Rhythm and Blues band.  They had attached large crowds to their dances at the Hydaway Club, Elizabeth North and Para Hills.  Let by Kevin Steele who used to sing with the Vectormen.  Colin Ford (Lead signer), John Nalstrom (lead guitar), Bob Harison (bass), John Phillips (drums), Ray Clayton (bass).
The D Coys
Or the dynamic D Coys as they were named since they released a hit on the charts.  Alistair Innes, Kevin Smith (formerly a member of the Viscounts) and Darryl Hanson.  Third record ‘Come running’.

The Titans
Girl group. Caroline, Kay, Rosemary

The Beatcombers
Best known for their rendition of Rolling Stones and Beatle numbers. Rodney Scott (rhythm guitar and lead vocal), Denis Kreusler (lead guitar), Brian Bowie (bass guitar), Geoff Oakes (drums).

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Elizabeth bands of the 1960’s

Elizabeth in its formulate years brought together many talented people, each with their own special set of skills.  The 1960's produced some very talented music groups which will be featured over a few posts.  I am sure I won't cover all bands, so if you have information that you can share with us please do.
 
TwilightsSingers Glen Shorrock and Paddy McCartney parted company with the Vectormen and joined up with the Hurricanes who changed their name to the Twilights.  Members include Terry Britten (lead guitar), Frank Barnard (drums), Peter Brideoak (rhythm) and John Byewaters (bass).

The Cliffmore sisters
The Cliffmore’sThe Cliffmore's were four sisters, Ellen, Linda, Susan and Patricia Sutcliffe.  They first started their climb to success when the family resided at Woomera.  Moved to Salisbury North and managed by their father. 
The girls had outstanding harmonies taught to them by their father who held the girls together as a family which they were and as mentioned a very good vocal group.
The girls toured South Australia and Victoria releasing two recordings for the HMV label.

Singles Include;
He’s not there - 1967
Michael Alexander – 1968

After providing backing vocals on several local records they released their own singles, which were produced by David McKay. They moved to Sydney where they sang in the clubs in Kings Cross and then to England in 1969 after meeting Barry Gibb who suggested Robert Stigwood should manage them. In England, they became The Surprise Sisters.
When The Surprise Sisters broke up, Ellen sang with her three brothers Mark, Martin & Johnny and a friend, Keith. This band produced several singles and performed in all the major clubs in London, as well as tv and also had a short stint in America.

Patricia married, became Patricia Berrell, and moved to Australia. There she signed a recording contract with Big Time Records and was produced by Charles Fisher, producer of Air Supply and more recently Savage Garden.
The Redbacks
The Redbacks were a backing group for top Australian recording start Johnny Devlin at an open air show in 1964.  Came first in the ‘Battle of the Bands’ held at the Elizabeth Skate rink in December 1964.   Peter Power is lead guitarist, lives at Gawler and studying jazz guitar.  Jimmy Spears is vocalist who has been compared to Mick Jagger.
Tommy Lindblom sings the ballad numbers.  Two former members were part of the Stingrays group, Mike McGuire and Gerry Redmond play rhythm and bass guitar.  The drummer is Glen Unwin.
The Redbacks conduct their own dance every Friday night at the Daunstey Road, Cricket clubrooms.
 

Monday, October 12, 2015

Roll up roll up, the Circus is in town

To witness a performance by a travelling circus was a memorable event, and not an uncommon site.  Circus' would often perform at larger towns outside Adelaide such as Gawler, but on occasion would stop at smaller townships such as Smithfield and Virginia.

In September 1865, Ashton's circus performed at Smithfield.  On this occasion they were at full strength, and performed to a full house.

In February 1879, Ashton's circus stopped at Virginia, performing not to a full house this time.  The township had a visit from the eminent Charles Dooner a few days previously, who showed his ‘Pantecnatheca’ (lantern show). Unlike some touring magic lantern shows, Charles Dooner stopped at many small places that, in the 1860s, could barely justify the title of township, and in most cases he set up his lanterns in the only suitable building, the local schoolroom.

On Tuesday evening in January 1862, Burton's circus enlivened the small township of Virginia, drawing up to 400 people to witness the performance.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Elizabeth Junior Chamber of Commerce


INAUGURAL MEETING

The Elizabeth Junior Chamber of Commerce was formed last Thursday evening at St Pauls Hall, Elizabeth North.
The Inaugural meeting was opened at 8pm by the Chairman, Keith Healey who is the President of the Sponsoring Chamber Northern Adelaide.

The meeting was addressed by Maurice Ralph, National Director of Jaycee for South Australia, Jack Smee, National Vice President and Max Cosh, past president for Port Adelaide chamber.
Maurie Ralph addressed the meeting on the international organisation of Jaycee mentioning the fact that Jaycee is the only Young Men’s organisation with a permanent Observer at the United Nations.

Jack Smee in his address spoke of the National level of Jaycee appertaining to Australia which is one of the most active countries in the world in the Jaycee organisation.
Max Cosh addressed the meeting on Jaycee, its chamber level and expressed the importance of leadership training.

At question time, several interesting questions were asked of the three Speakers from a large and attentive audience of over 200 people. Many  being from other chambers in SA, Barossa and Port Adelaide  being particularly noticeable.
Peter Van Tenac was elected President of the new chamber, Graham Mitchell, Vice President, Chook Chandle,r Secretary and Wes Page, Treasurer.  Peter Van Tenac has been the guiding hand and in the formation of the new Chamber being the Chairman of the Extension Committee from North Adelaide.  He has been enthusiastic at having being elected to the Council of the new Chamber.

The councillors are Merv Rodgers, Tony Lindford, Jeff Lowen, Jeff Barker, Ian Pearce and John Ford.
The new President was then presented with the Presidents badge and the J.C.I. Shield by Jack Smee National Vice-President. Peter Van Tenac then carried on as Chairman of the meeting.

The new Chairman then called upon the Guest Speakers to address the meeting.
Mr R.W, Boswell, the Controller of Weapons Research Establishment expressed this thanks for being allowed to speak and drew the attention of the meeting to the importance of Jaycee to the community and just one Jaycee project with which he was familiar.  Apprentice of the Year for Australia which a W.R.A. apprentice won last year.

Mr Bowey the Chairman of the District Council of Salisbury, welcomed the new Chamber to the district and promptly requested that the new Chamber send representatives to a Nationalisation Ceremony to be held in Salisbury, 8th August.  Peter Van Tenac assured his that the new Chamber would be represented.

The third Speaker, Mr Kaethner of S.A.H.T himself a past Jaycee member welcomed the new Chamber on behalf of the Trust and expressed his hopes for a successful future.
A vote of thanks to Guest Speakers was given by Lloyd Marsh, Vice President North Adelaide J.C.  The President of the new Chamber then announced that the first meeting of the new Chamber would be held at the St. Peters College Mission Hall, Elizabeth Centre at 8pm 9th August. He also thanked all those organisations that sent their good wishes for a successful Inaugural meeting.

The Jaycee Creed then read by Ian Hoyle N.A. and the National Anthem played.
The meeting was then closed and everyone then retired for an excellent supper which had been prepared by the wives of Jaycee members.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

If it is for England and we must be prepared to make a sacrifice

The City of Playford underwent little change from white settlement until 1940.  A rural community, with farms spread over the flat plains, the farmers would have all shared their lives with each other.  WWII changed all that, as the Government wanted land to build a Munitions factory.  The life they knew was going.  How did it affect the local?  This is an interesting article on the changes that Penfield was about to encounter.

old Penfield school

Old Stone Barn to Go
MEMORIES FOR PENFIELD By "The News" Special Representative

The big stone barn at Penfield will disappear under the acquisition and clearance of land in the Salisbury-Penfield Smithfield area for munitions works-but not the memories of romance and enjoyment that the old barn has created for nearly every one of the settlers for miles round.
For many years the barn has been the scene of dances and social evenings,  get together parties, the meeting place of couples and of families. Married couples and their families spoke today with lingering thoughts of the happy times spent there-thoughts that would not permit them to visualise the industrialisation of large slices of the rural charm they have known, in some cases throughout their lives. They recalled that young and old had been in the habit of gathering at the barn from miles round from Smithfield, Virginia, Salisbury, Angle Vale, Bolivar and even some from Adelaide.
"They can take away the barn if they want to, or use it in their works programmes, but they cannot take away the memories that the barn holds for most of us. "That sentiment expressed by Mr and Mrs J. J. Thompson in the Penfield area was echoed by many others.

Philosophic About Change
All are quite philosophic about the change that is taking place. During a tour of the area I talked with many of those who will see a lifetime's work scrapped for the needs of the hour. They are in the midst of the transformation. The surveyor and the builder are already at work.  Small new buildings, totally different from the rural barns and cowsheds, dot the landscape.  Pegs here and there indicate others to come.  But the biggest buildings, so the local gossips say, are yet to be started. It is natural that the majority should wish that some other spot had been selected, so that they might pursue their peaceful production.  But they realise it is a case of national necessity, and appreciate that the large area of flat country 6000 acres have been selected and a further 4000 acres may yet be acquired -lends itself to the project in hand. Salisbury for instance, is only half an hour's run by train from Adelaide with all amenities, such as water and electricity, in addition to road rail, and ship transport, near at hand.

Turning to the Future

The first shock of the imminent change in their lives and surroundings having passed, most of the landowners are turning their attention to future activities, but few care to discuss that aspect until they receive notice to quit.  Some still hope to remain in the district.  Two of those affected will lose their homesteads but retain large sections of land-unless, of course, this is acquired at a later date. They are Mr. J. J. Thompson and Mr. Len Pederick. "My house and 40 acres have been acquired, but I still have 320 acres on the other side of the road," said Mr. Thomson whose late father took up land in the district 50 years ago. "I suppose I shall have to build another home and dairy, but I don't like the thought of it after the work I have put into this one.  "Still, I am better off than Mr. Pederick. My sheds are on the land that I will retain, whereas Mr. Pederick's sheds and home have all been taken over. Only recently we installed a milking machine, and brought our diary up to date. All that will have to be taken down and rebuilt on another site."
Herd of 20 Cows Sold
Mr. Pederick has already made a start in readjustment. Yesterday after noon he sold by auction his herd of 20 cows and several horses. "If I have to move quickly I shall not have to worry about milking sheds for the time being." he said. His properly was taken up by his wife's parents-the Pattersons-about 80 years ago.  His wife was born on it 50 years ago, and Mr. Pederick has been in occupation for 26 years.  He will have 240 acres left after losing 80 acres and the homestead. Mr. H. E. White, one of three brothers whose properties are to be acquired, was busy preparing Meringa Derby, Chrissie Derby, Little Eva, and Barcarolle for the forthcoming trotting season. "I took over this property from my sister only in July." he said. "I erected these stables and congratulated myself on having a nice private trot ting track in one of my paddocks. If was only a few days after I saw things shaping nicely that I received notice that the property was to be acquired for defence purposes. "Still I have my stables at Payneham, and can take my trotters back there. But it is not the same as having a training track at your back door and a good track, too." he added, pointing to it.

Settled There in 1848
His brother,  Mr. H. J. White, will lose the 300 acres which he bought 30 years ago. The family settled in the Salisbury district in 1848. "I'm certainly not going to pioneer another section now," said Mr. White when asked his future plans. It is not unlikely that he will build a home in Salisbury township. The general store and post office, alongside the old barn, is doomed under the scheme. Mr. and Mrs. Dunstone have been in charge there for eight years, but are undecided whether they will build another, business. "If it is for England we must be prepared to make a sacrifice," said Mrs. Dunstone. "At least we will be compensated and that is more than is happening  to many of those 'who are losing their homes and businesses in England."

£200 Spent on School
Penfield is proud of its school.  That is to go. The irony of it is that it is only a couple of years since £200 was spent on it. It has an average attendance of 14 children, although in its heyday when Penfield, before Salisbury, was the hub of the district, it had an attendance of 26. Future school facilities will depend on the needs of the new population that may surround the works. Salisbury business people are watching the transformation with interest but not with alarm. They have experienced a steady trade over many years and expect it to continue maybe expand. There are the optimists, of course, who are already visualising the transformation after the war of the huge munitions works to peace-time production of anything from meat hooks to motor cars, and say this will be brought about by British capital. The realists are content to hasten the reaping of what they have sown and talk of the happy times spent at the old barn.

News (Adelaide) Friday 11 October 1940