Saturday, December 24, 2016

Father Christmas visits Smithfield CWA 1954


Father Christmas paid a surprise visit to the Smithfield C.W.A. Xmas party — and from a small tree produced a gift for every member.

Guests included the Divisional President (Mrs. Sobels') who briefly mentioned the State objective for the coming year.

Handicraft members displayed a splendid variety of articles they had made.

All contributed toys and books, with a £5/5/- donation, to forward to the Children's

Mrs. Harvey Kelly delighted with an account of the Royal Show at Windsor.

Arrangements were completed for the visit to Dawes Road Repatriation Hospital at  Xmas.

Afternoon tea, including strawberries and ice cream, were another pleasant part of proceedings which had been arranged by the Social Committee.

The branch is now in recess until March.

Bunyip Friday 17 Dec 1954

Monday, December 19, 2016

Using infographics and history

An infographic is information that is portrayed visually.  They allow complex information to be easily understood, eye-catching and easily shareable.  As the saying goes, a picture paints a thousand words.

While infographics are not new, we are seeing them more and more.  They are predominately used by marketing.   Local government love them to portray how ratepayers money is spent.  Books are even being produced, such as the History of WWI in infographics.

Why use infographics?
They can be a powerful tool to help your content be seen amongst the vast electronic world. People naturally love facts, figures, stats and other graphical elements.  We are visual creatures and because of this people are easily attracted to images that attract their attention.  They are much easier to process and 30 times more likely to be read that a text article.

Infographics are great for imbedding in websites, can be easily shared as images online.
They are designed to include short, easily understandable text just to emphasize an important piece of information.  This simplicity makes Infographics more easily understood by non-English global users, people with low literacy skills.

Infographics and history

Infographics are great to convey a history of something, your town, a business, a product.  You can produce infographics on people, produce timelines and highlight a particular story or time of history (floods, WWI, depression, building history), do then and nows.

How to make one?
Infographics make use of tables, graphs, charts, images and symbols. To produce these you need to compile the data and information.    If you can gleam numbers from your research that can easily be turned into images.  

When doing research now, I often have a notebook with me, that I will write any stats down in, or if I am trying to work out name changes of schools, clubs, churches etc I draw it.  If working on a particular project, I may compile a spreadsheet and insert any data.

I have produced infographics just using Publisher, but you can also use free apps (or apps that offer free versions)  to create them.  Once completed you can download them as a graphic or PDF. I have used   You can add your own images or use their symbols.  Graphs and tables are easily produced using their setup. 
Others include:

Once you have your infographic you can use it to make postcards, exhibition panels, maybe even the history of your town as infographics.

If you need inspiration try looking on Pinterest.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Bridge Park Pig Stud

James William ALDRIDGE

James was born in Adelaide on 15th April 1888 in Adelaide, the youngest of eight children.  He was the son of James Henry Aldridge, a noted breeder of high class blood horses.  His stud farm was famous throughout Australia.
After winning a piglet for a shilling at a bazaar as a school boy, he fattened it up, and then resold it for a £7 profit.   From that time he decided to become a stud pig breeder. After school he studied at Roseworthy College for two years.  At age 19 he took up land on Kangaroo Island.  After two years he went to Loxton and worked on farms there before taking up share farming.  He spent another two year stint in New South Wales share farming.   His father sent for him after securing for him land at Booborowie Estate.  The Booborowie farm had up to 500 pigs in open paddocks. 

In 1915 he enlisted and served a year in the Armed services.  He joined the 7/11th Light Horse regiment and entered Officers school.  He was found to suffer from epilepsy and was invalided back to Australia.  James married Georgina ‘Rene’ Fuller on 28 June 1917.
He sold the land at Booborowie and purchased a property at Angle Vale around 1926 where he engaged in mixed farming and pig breeding.  Located on the Gawler River near the Angle Vale Bridge, the property was known ‘Bridge Park’.  He started his pig stud by importing from Victoria the champion and first prize Gloucester Spot sow and first prize boar at the Melbourne Show.   

When his son Jim enlisted in the AIF in 1940, Jim reduced his stock. In 1942, the family received notification that Corporal James Aldridge was accidently drowned in Queensland.  Five years later the farm was sold.
James is buried at St Jude’s Brighton cemetery, having passed away on 23 July 1976. Georgina passed away a few months later on 13th November and is also buried in St Jude’s.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

The Virginia Bridge

Text Box: c. 1920The Gawler River forms a natural boarder to the City of Playford. Following colonial settlement there was a need to cross these natural water courses. In summer it was a dry channel, but when it flooded and in the rainy season it was no unusual thing to see the river overflow.

It was important to construct a suitable bridge that would allow farmers to cross with their produce and regular travellers.  There appeared to be a structure in place before 1869, but was in poor condition.  In 1865 a farmer crossing on his horse fell through the planking. The horse was fine and had to be lifted out with ropes.

The Virginia Bridge is built over the Gawler River, in the line of the north-west branch of the North road, at a spot known as ' Fisher's Crossing,' about two miles north of Virginia township, hence the name.  The river it this spot is exactly 100 feet wide, the banks flat or rather falling from the river. 
The Central Road Board designed a bridge with three huge laminated arches looking like water wheels.    Mr Macaulay recommended a bowstring bridge, with two roadways, supported at each end on piles. The Board having approved or the design, tenders were invited, and Mr. Pitman obtained the contract.

Six piles are driven in double rows at each end of the bridge, giving a clear waterway or 100 feet. Upon the heads of each row of piles a timber cap is placed. Upon these caps rests the bridge itself; and perhaps there is no bridge in the colony in which so little material has been used in the framework or skeleton as in this.
The trusses, three in number, are composed of an arc or bow, having a versed sine of 10 feet, fitted at each end into iron sockets, which are bolted down to a stringer or the beam.  At intervals of seven feet, uprights are placed, tenured at the one end into the stringer, and at the other into the arc. Wrought-iron tie-rods pass through these uprights, and are screwed up on the under side of the stringer.  A strong handrail is introduced between the uprights which acts in a double capacity, namely, as a protection to the traffic, and also greatly increasing the stiffness of the truss.

Each are is built of three-inch planks 11 inches in width. The middle rib is composed of eight layers ; the two outside ones of seven ; thus giving a total sectional area of five superficial feet (that of the Gumeracha Bridge is nine feet). The platform of the bridge consists of a double layer of three-inch planks laid diagonally and crossing each other at right angles.
The Bridge was officially opened by Mr. Thompson, Secretary of the Central Board of Main February 1858. Mr. Thompson arrived, with the contractor, Mr. Jacob Pitman, and Mrs. Pitman, in one of Mr. Rounsevell's carriages and four.  They were met on the ground by the Superintending Surveyor, Mr. Macaulay, and the Clerk of the Works, Mr. Samuel Wastell.  After testing the bridge with various loads of corn.  The Secretary, in the name of the Board, then christened the Bridge the ' Virginia Bridge.'   Three cheers were given for the Queen ; three more for the contractor; and three more for the Superintending Surveyor.

It wasn’t long before it began to show signs of weakness.  In a short time £2800 was spend on repairs.
By 1863, complaints were written in the newspaper about the state of the bridge.  £99 had been spent repairing the bridge that year.  A petition signed by users of the road had been sent into the Central Road Board requesting repair.

A new bridge was opened in 1869 to replace the rickety, tumble down structure previously in use.    At 12 noon a large party gathered, inspecting and commenting on its appearance.
The total span between the masonry abutments is 122 feet, but two wets of piers have been erected on each side of the water way. The piers are 8-inch cylinder, and the work of Messrs. Martin and Co., and support cast iron transvers girders turned out by Mellor Bros., of Adelaide. The bridge has taken nearly 12 months to construct.

The guests almost 300 were present to witness the opening ceremony.  The honour of christening the bridge was assigned to Miss Elizabeth Ridgway, who is the oldest native born lady in the neighbourhood.
Miss Ridgway made her way to the centre of the bridge, and, taking a bottle of wine in her hand, said — ' In the name of the great Architect of the universe, to whom be the praise and glory, I name this bridge the Virginia Bridge, and declare it to be open for public traffic.'  She then broke the bottle on the bridge, and three hearty, cheers were raised for Her Majesty the Queen. Mr. Bright, M.P., then advanced and formally declared the bridge open, after which cheers for Miss Ridgway and Miss Morris were given.

An adjournment was then at once made for lunch.
About 50 gentlemen sat down to a cold collation placed upon the table in excellent style by Host Mallyon of the Wheatsheaf Inn, Virginia.

Numerous toasts were given before the guests left at 4 o'clock, the Adelaide gentleman departed for town amid cheers. The festivities were, however, kept up by a ball in Mallyon's big room. Altogether a pleasant day was passed.
In 1923, the Automobile Association of SA declared the bridge unsafe for vehicles over one ton.

The banks fo the river near the bridge was a popular picnic place. Mr Ridgway who owned property near the bridge was often asked by groups to use his land.