Armistice Day Centenary, November 11, 2018
Albury & District Historical Society member Chris McQuellin played a significant role in organising the commemoration service for the centenary of the end of World War I hostilities. Society members placed flags on the graves of 115 World War I servicemen buried and/or memorialised at the Albury’s Waugh Rd and Pioneer Cemeteries.
Hundreds gathered at Albury’s Pioneer Cemetery on Armistice Day, Sunday November 11 for the special centenary service, organised by the city’s RSL sub-branch.
Member for Farrer, Sussan Ley, told of the reaction on the Western Front to peace on November 11, 1918: “Once the news spread, all over the world, people were dancing in the streets and drinking champagne, but at the front there was no celebration … No words today or any day can do justice to the lives of the 61,721 Australians who were then dead, but from the magnitude of their sacrifice our young nation emerged more confident to take its place in the world.”
Albury mayor Kevin Mack payed tribute to the role of local people: “The volunteers, the nurses, the ladies’ auxiliaries and those people who raised money for much needed war bonds and food to be sent to the front, they are the people who are unheralded in a lot of ways.”
Member for Albury, Greg Aplin reflected on what can be learnt from the commemorative service: “This is a reminder that the wickedness that leads to war will pass, that evil philosophies and atrocities will end, that friendships can be rebuilt albeit over time and a reminder that war is the failure of diplomacy.”
The Albury City Band, Scots School Pipe Band, the Sing Australia Group and vocalist Dianne Prince provided a musical focus for much of the service.
Wreaths were laid in memory of two decorated soldiers buried in the pioneer and general cemeteries, one by Darcy Bishop, great grandson of Charles Bishop and the second by Rowan Chalmers-Borella, son of Albert Borella.
Armistice Day Albury, November 11, 2018 - click on image to expand
Lake Urana trip, October 2018
Tour Leader Chris de Vreeze gave this account of our bus trip to Lake Urana on Sunday October 21, 2018:
Our first point of interest was Billabong Creek at Walbundrie which enters a zone of very low gradient and so follows its meandering course to Deniliquin.
Not far beyond Walbundrie, we stopped at Bulgandry, on its right bank. Once a declared gold field, as was Walbundrie, and both are Wiradjuri place names. Doug Hunter’s family has a long connection with the village and Doug writes “Bulgandry was a thriving hamlet around the turn of the nineteenth century with churches, school, hotels, post office, and football and cricket teams. The township faced the Urana Road and extended back across what is now a bare paddock. Only two pise (rammed earth) ruins remain. The decline began with the positioning of the railway five kilometres to the north where the town of Rand grew up.”
Next, on the Billabong’s right bank, is Rand, named after a prominent early grazier Robert Rand. From there we proceeded further before climbing to the hillock known as Mahonga Travelling Stock Reserve, from which can be seen 360 degrees of flat country, punctuated by the flat hill, Goombargana (“The Turtle”) – a memorial marker to the Cudderford family was located before we moved on past Uranagong on the northern side of the back Urana Road, and, given the dry conditions, was filled to near capacity.
Thence to Urana (or ‘Aireena’, the sound of quail rising), once a great rural centre but still home to the Lake and the wondrous eastern lunette. Calostemma lillies still flourish here.
We moved on to the southern lunette burial site which dates back many thousands of years. It was barred to entry but antiquity of habitation has been well established.
Under severe time stress, the bus was flown over the western shoulder of Goombargana, through the hamlet of Balldale, the State Forest of Kentucky, past both Howlong’s hotels, Jingerra lagoon and so home to Albury.
No pensioners were harmed in the production of this tour. See our gallery of images below.
Lake Urana Trip October 2018 - click on image to expand
Albury Pioneer Cemetery Walk 2017
Our Society held a “cemetery walk” on Sunday May 21 at the Albury Pioneer Cemetery as a late celebration of Heritage Week. The theme this year was “having a voice” so speakers concentrated on personalities buried at the Pioneer Cemetery who had a voice – singers, auctioneers, newspaper editors and local council members. So with lovely weather we headed off to listen to what each of our personalities had to say.
History of Homes & Other Buildings in Albury
The Albury property database was funded by a community grant of $500 from AlburyCity. The aim of the database is to have available a searchable history of as many buildings in Albury as possible. The housing files collected over many years have been transferred to the database and the next step is to enter housing details from local history books and to add photographs where possible. Photos have been taken of houses listed for demolition from the AlburyCity advertisements for some years.The task is huge and any help would be greatly appreciated. To assist us in data collection, click on the link to download a blank form: Albury historic homes and buildings information form
The Uiver Emergency
On October 24 of 2014 it was 80 years since the Uiver emergency saw the people of Albury rallying to the assistance of the Dutch airplane competing in the London to Melbourne air race. You can read Doug Royal’s account of the emergency by clicking on the pdf document The Uiver at Albury
Listen to the ABC Hindsight account at Hindsight/The Uiver Emergency
Listen also to the recollections of Albury locals who witnessed the landing and shared their memories of the event with ABC radio on the 75th anniversary of the landing by clicking on the Play icons below:
BBC – Rabbits in the Albury Region
BBC World Service ‘Witness’ program contacted A&DHS for assistance compiling a program on Australia’s rabbit plague of the late 1940s and early 1950s. Albury & District Historical Society member and local farmer, Bill McDonald of Mullengandra (north of Albury) was contacted and we can listen to the report compiled by BBC reporter Alex Last. Bill talks about the rabbit plague and measures tried to keep numbers under control, including the introduction of the myxomatosis virus. Listen to the program by clicking on the Play icon below: