Sunday, 21 May 2017

Queensland’s Indigenous participation in WWI - a State Library of Queensland research project.

DAVIES, Augustus Hodgkinson #3282

Private Augustus Davies, 41st Infantry Battalion. 

DOYLE, Harry #2426

Private Harry Doyle, 11th Light Horse Regiment. 

It is understood around 300 Indigenous Queenslanders enlisted in the First World War, many more than was originally thought. Uncovering Queensland’s Indigenous participation began at SLQ in 2014 in the lead up to the Serving Country Forum, as part of QANZAC 100: Memories for a New Generation.
Since then SLQ’s Indigenous Languages Coordinator, Des Crump has developed a resource guide on researching Indigenous soldiers of the First World War. Importantly, the guide includes an alphabetic listing, by Queensland location, the names of known Indigenous men who volunteered for enlistment and service. The resource guide is designed to get families started on their own research.

You can read several blog articles about Queensland’s Indigenous soldiers on the WWI blog.

QANZAC100 Content Technician Marg Powell is also contributing her extensive research into the QANZAC100 Historypin hub.  A work in progress, Marg is gradually pinning the portraits and stories of Queensland’s Aboriginal servicemen in the collection:-
Indigenous enlistment: Stories and portraits of Queensland's Aboriginal servicemen of the First World War  

The profile in the collection also states – ‘As we learn more about indigenous participation in the First World War, our list of confirmed Indigenous servicemen continues to change. The soldiers represented here are those verified for inclusion up to March 2017. More will be added as they are discovered’.

Do you know any Indigenous Fraser Coast locals who enlisted in the wars?

If you have any further questions please contact the Fraser Coast Libraries on (07) 41905781.

Published with consent from State Library of Queensland.

Tags #indigenous #frasercoast #WW1 #WW2 #Qanzac100 #SLQ

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Bill Kitson - the History of Charting the Wide Bay Coast

Andrew Petrie
Soon after the discovery of the Wide Bay River (Mary River) by Andrew Petrie in 1842, John Eales established a sheep station near the present town of Tiaro. Although short lived, this early settlement paved the way for future settlements on the Mary River.
Mathew Flinders
Previously maritime explorers like Flinders 1802 and Edwardson 1822 had visited Hervey Bay and both had missed the entrance to the river.

The Map of Fraser Island. Edwardson drew this Map in 1822 using the map of Flinders as a base. He captained the NV Snapper and used this map to navigate the water of the Fraser Coast. Doug Waters donated this map to Fraser Coast Libraries and it is hanging in the local history section of Hervey Bay Branch.

Edwardson did however prove that Fraser Island was indeed an island, a fact that Flinders had missed when he called it the Great Sandy Peninsula.
In 1847 Surveyor J.C. Burnett reported on what he saw while sailing up Petrie’s Wide Bay river and soon settlers were to follow establishing their wharf sites and inns on the banks of the river at Baddow.
When Queensland became a separate colony in 1859, its first parliament realised the importance of having accurate marine charts made of its long coastline. To achieve this they joined together with other Australian colonies to have the Admiralty send out proper hydrographic surveyors to accurately chart their coastlines, harbours and rivers by the scientific method of triangulation. Under this arrangement the colony was to bare half the cost (£1500 per annum) and provide a vessel for the survey. The Admiralty for their part would provide the surveyors, instruments and prepare the final charts.
The officer chosen for the survey was James Jeffrey, master in the Royal Navy. Arriving in Queensland in 1862 with his wife, he was soon at work on the survey of the entrance to the Wide Bay port. At this time the port had received its first immigrant vessel direct from England and was fast becoming a port for the pastoral stations in the area as well as servicing the timber getters.
For the survey Jeffrey had a 60 foot schooner built in Sydney which he called the Pearl. He was a man of considerable experience and for the survey he was assisted by Donald Matheson who had served under him on the Scottish survey and who had followed him out to the colony.
Jeffrey saw the potential of the Maryborough area and purchased several blocks of agricultural land on the banks of the Mary river and named his residence, Frankstone. Jeffrey was also a difficult man and in some circles was unpopular as a local Police Magistrate.
In 1865, he was replaced as Marine Surveyor by Edward Parker Bedwell after a very public dispute with William Davidson, District Surveyor of the Surveyor General’s Office in Maryborough. This public airing of their dispute caused the Admiralty to retire him. Jeffrey continued to farm in the area until 1872 when he returned home to England.
After the discovery of the Gympie gold field, the amount of shipping coming to the area increased, which resulted in Bedwell continuing the nautical surveys in the area between 1868 and 1870.
These two men were the first surveyors to chart the Hervey Bay area in any great detail.
Bill Kitson is writing a book on these early marine surveyors who charted our Queensland coastline between 1861 and 1914.

Information supplied by Bill Kitson 
Museum of Lands, Mapping and Surveying
Land and Spatial Information, Department of Natural Resources and Mines
T: (07) 3330 4756
Level 2 | 867 Main Street | Woolloongabba Qld 4102 | GPO Box 2454, Brisbane Q 4000
Published with consent from Bill Kitson

Tags #widebay #survey #maritime #Flinders #Petrie #Jeffrey #Bedwell #Maryborough #FraserIsland #Burnett #Edwardson #Davidson

Monday, 1 May 2017

Family Fun Day 20th May, 2017 celebrating the 130th Anniversary of the Walker Street Hospital Site

Fraser Coast Libraries were lucky enough to be have Maryborough Hospital Museum's member, Marilyn Jensen present the history of the Hospitals as part of our local history talk series. The link to the Libraries' recording of this talk can be found here.
Marilyn Jensen Maryborough Hospital Museum's Member

Maryborough Hospital will mark 130 years of caring for its community from its current Walker Street site, and it is celebrating with a family fun day for staff and the community. The family fun day will take place  Saturday, May 20, from 10am – 2pm.

The following information has been supplied by Marilyn Jensen:

Maryborough's current public general hospital has been operational in Walker Street since 1887 – 130 years this May, but in actual fact the history of Maryborough's public hospital commenced in the 1850s.

By the early 1850s, the fledgling settlement of Wide Bay was becoming quite a prosperous town and by 1856 the move to establish a hospital gained momentum. A committee was formed (known initially as the Wide Bay and Burnett District Hospital Committee) and met a few times but nothing became of it for about three years. Some cottages may have been used during this time but the history is inconclusive.

A second committee in 1859 got things moving and rented a succession of cottages as hospitals. The first was the Church of England parsonage near Walker and Lennox Streets for about six months, then a house (said to be a slab hut) from a Constable Doran, and later a house in Ferry St from a Mrs McAdam. This house was used until the new hospital in Lennox St (between Sussex and Kent St) was built and occupied by July 1864. It was the first purpose built hospital outside of Brisbane.

Lennox St Hospital c 1865. Source: Qld State Archives

Population growth, influenced by immigration saw the expansion of the hospital and its services and after four years, a new wing was added to the Sussex St side of the building. As a result of Polynesians being bought in as farm labour, a Polynesian ward was built as a separate building at the rear of the hospital and a few years later extended. The hospital building had problems with damp which was overcome by cementing and painting the outside walls.

In 1874 with more increases in population growth, an additional wing was added on the Kent St side of the main building. The hospital's first Resident Surgeon, Dr Little, was employed and a residence for him built in the grounds. By 1882 the hospital's first trained nurse was employed and things that we take for granted today such as gas and water supply were added. By this time it was obvious that the hospital was deteriorating and not suited to the continued population growth and land was secured in Walker St for a new hospital. By 1885, building of the new hospital commenced. This was completed in 1887 with the hospital being officially opened on the 20th May with much celebration and after 23 years at the Lennox St site, hospital services were relocated to the new hospital soon after where it remains today. The buildings at Lennox St were handed over for police barracks and later both land and buildings were purchased by the Defence Department.
Lennox St Hospital, after 1875. Source: Wide Bay Hospitals Museum Soc. Inc

The hospital built on the Walker Street site was an impressive complex of two storey masonry buildings linked by single storey covered walkways. The elevated site, on the outskirts of town was suited to the principles of pavilion design and the scale and detail of the buildings reflected the importance of the city at the time. Constructed by builder Robert Taylor for £16,000 to the design of colonial architect John James Clark, it comprised a two storey central administration block with a two storey L shaped wing on each side (a west wing and a east wing) and a single storey kitchen behind in a symmetrical arrangement. All the buildings were linked by single storey covered walkways. A single storey residence for the medical superintendent was also built as well as a morgue. Only one wing (the east wing) and the central block were originally occupied.
 Maryborough Hospital Walker St, 1887. Source: Wide Bay hospitals Museum Soc. Inc

Wide Bay Hospitals Museum Soc. Inc.
State Library Qld
Published with consent from Marilyn Jensen
Tags# Maryborough #Hospital #museum #Widebay #funday

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

John Ambertel - one of the oldest Australian South Sea Islanders in the Fraser Coast

As part of our Having a Voice oral history project we have interviewed John Ambertel,who will be 86 this year and is one of the oldest Australian South Sea Islanders living on the Fraser Coast. He has a rich memory of life as a drover, a horse lover, a car man and a cane cutter. His many fascinating stories will be uploaded on to our Youtube page found here

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Historypin and Having a Voice; Heritage Week Theme 8-14th of May

An early Labour Day procession in Maryborough, Qld. The float has been prepared by the Butchers Union with the aim to reduce hours. Hours were 77 per week.  They were reduced to 68 hours and this was in place when this image was taken. The Union  are asking  for a further reduction to 48 hour week. 
Historypin is a platform where you can share your digital images. Fraser Coast Libraries have been working with Maryborough, Wide Bay and Burnett Historical Society Inc to populate our Having a Voice collection with interesting photos. These include images relating to the Eight Hour Day, the Town Criers and the Eisteddfods. This collection includes 67 images currently and can be found here .Our Historypin chat group will be adding information to the images. This group has been researching the Eight Hour Day and the Benevolent Society for three months.

Please join and add your own images or come along to the Historypin chat session in Maryborough on the first Tuesday of the month, at 12 noon. The next one will be held on the 2nd of May in the Maryborough creative space.

Look for more displays, the Vintage film Eliza Fraser and Oral History presentation found here and here  during Heritage Festival Week celebrations between the 8th and 14th of May, 2017.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Colonel G. Birkbeck - Consecration of Colours 1928

Fraser Coast Libraries received some photos from R.A. Birkbeck (Bob) that he found in his Grandfather's belongings.  Enclosed in a letter where photos of Colonel G. Birkbeck and a Consecration of Colours event at Ululah, Maryborough, 1928.

Colonel G. Birkbeck 5th regiment receiving the Colours in Maryborough 20th May, 1928.

These are the Medals being worn by Bob's Grandfather
Consecration of Colours
Colonel G. Birkbeck passing guidon to Mayor Barker, 20th May, 1928.
General Foote and Staff taking salute at the March Past Sunday, 20th May, 1928
The Kings colours

Have you got any old photos in boxes?
Learn how to digitise them at the Historypin chat group held the first Tuesday of the month in Maryborough Library at 12 noon. The next session is May 2nd, 2017.

If you have digitised photos, you can also add them to our history pin site found here

Tags #ululah #maryborough #army #regiment

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Having a Voice

Keith and Juanita Shang, Mildred Goldsmith, Leon Johnson and Dudley Byquar have participated in our oral history recordings Having a Voice.
Keith and Juanita Shang
Keith and Juanita Shang tell a fascinating story about their life together. Keith, who turns 91 this year, tells us about his life as a Chinese Australia.  Juanita gives us her perspective as his wife and also as the descendant of a family with a very interesting history including Red Coats and overseas battles.  
Mildred Goldsmith

Ninety-six year old Mildred Goldsmith tells us about her life in the area. She remembers very clearly the way things were in her childhood and brings us through her life to her current honours as a Professor of Ikebana. We were able to capture her delight in the events of her life as she generously shared her story.
Leon and Dudley Byquar remember family members.

Brothers Leon Johnson and Dudly Byquar reminisce about life as children on Plantation Island Road. They recall the last of the original Kanaka men who lived in the area and tell us about their life going to school and later working in the cane fields of Nikenbah and beyond. 

All these oral history recordings will be available on the libraries' youtube site 

Tags #Australianchinese #Australiansouthseaislanders #plantationisland #herveybay #Herveybaylibraries #frasercoast #Herveybay #Nikenbah #Ikebana #redcoats