Wednesday, February 25, 2015

PhD student wants to interview Greta migrants

From the Maitland Mercury report:
From wartorn Europe to the devastating floods in Maitland there’s no doubt those migrants who came through the Greta camp after World War II had a tough start to life in Australia.
The continent has a reputation for wild extremes in weather.
Migrants from the camp will have an opportunity to share their stories this week with PhD student Gretel Evans.
“I’ve really found that continuous history of floods in Maitland really interesting,” Ms Evans said.
“I’m also interested in how those people who came to the Greta migrant camp might have found that too.”

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 18, 2015.

Newsfront actor returns to Maitland for movie screening

From the Maitland Mercury report:
During the late 1970s Australian actor Chris Haywood played a victim of Maitland’s catastrophic 1955 flood.
As a young camera assistant in the Australian classic Newsfront, Haywood’s character (Chris Hewitt) was lost in the raging flood waters ­during a visit to Maitland to capture newsreel footage of the natural disaster.
This month – in commemoration of the flood’s 60th anniversary – Haywood will attend a free screening of the film at Maitland.
Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 16, 2015.

Maitland's St Mary's Anglican Church parishioners celebrate columbarium opening

From the Maitland Mercury report:
St Mary’s Anglican Church at Maitland has a new columbarium after 20 years of planning.
A columbarium is a place of remembrance and for the storage of cremated remains.
The congregation of about 100 people gathered on Sunday for the opening.
A mass was held, followed by a champagne brunch.
Newcastle Diocese Bishop Greg Thompson made the trip to Maitland to consecrate the site with Father Chris Butterworth.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 15, 2015.

Two weeks on a bridge during 1955 Maitland flood

From the Maitland Mercury report:
Daniel Lewis took time out this week to visit Maitland’s High Street road bridge that looms large in his memory at this time of year.
That bridge was his “home” for 14 hectic days during the 1955 floods.
It was also “home” to about 200 other people who were trapped there.
As a 20-year-old volunteer for St John’s Ambulance, it was Mr Lewis’ first major mission.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 12, 2015.

Memories of Maitland 1955 flood back with boat display

From the Maitland Mercury report:
An original Maitland flood boat used to rescue stranded victims in the 1949 and 1955 floods will be on display at the Newcastle Maritime Museum in March.
It once belonged to Maitland City Council and was refurbished by Ron Haug in 2007.
The boat was found at Maitland High School while Grahame Tumpane was working on a project there.
With the help of Bob Hayman and Marilyn Bliss the boat was moved to Mr Hayman’s house at Lambton, then to Coal Point and finally Kilaben Bay.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury,

Maitland to get Gallipoli lantern

From the Maitland Mercury report:
A special Gallipoli lantern is to be presented to Maitland RSL Sub-Branch – one of 25 sub-branches to receive one - to commemorate 100 years since the landing in Turkey during World War I.
The presentation will be made to Maitland RSL president Eric Bell at a ceremony in Canberra on Friday.
“Our sub-branch was one of 25 selected to receive these Gallipoli lanterns from the federal government,” Mr Bell said.
“I will be honoured to bring this back to Maitland, where it will be available to all veterans’ groups and schools.”

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 10, 2015.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Maitland Regional Museum committee draws up action plan for 2015

From the Maitland Mercury report:
The committee campaigning to secure funding, support and a site for the Maitland Regional Museum has taken its first step forward in 2015 with the release of its official logo and branding. 
President of the committee, Dr Janece McDonald identified 2015 as a crucial year for the campaign to get the museum up and running either in an existing historical building or in a brand new site.
“By the end of 2015 we would like to have secured some corporate and government funding as well as ­identified a brick-and-mortar building for the museum,” Dr McDonald said.

Full article available at: Maitland Mercury, Feb. 1, 2015.

Park honours Maitland war hero Joseph Maxwell VC

From the Maitland Mercury report:
Construction of the long-awaited children’s playground at Darcy’s Peak has been completed.
“The new Joseph Maxwell VC Park and playground is another local amenity that will help make Darcy’s Peak a great place to live,” he said.
The park is named after former Gillieston Heights resident Joseph Maxwell who was awarded a Victoria Cross for his bravery on the battlefield during World War I.
Mr Maxwell served at Gallipoli, where he saw fighting at Lone Pine.
He later fought at Pozieres, France, during the middle stages of the 1916 Battle of the Somme.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 1, 2015.

1955 Maitland Flood: night of terror surrounded by flood waters

From the Maitland Mercury report:
Growing up on a farm at Oakhampton Road, Maitland was a carefree, happy adventure for the Hill family siblings.
But as Barbara Hill (now Leake) recalled, everything the family owned was lost in the February 1955 Maitland flood.
At that time, Mrs Leake was 14-years-old, the oldest of four children, and unlike their experience in the 1949 Maitland flood, they had no idea what was about to rain upon them.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 29, 2015.

1955 Maitland Flood: Expert panel to speak at Reading Cinema

From the Maitland Mercury report:
A special free event to commemorate the 1955 floods and their impact on the local community will be at Reading Cinemas Maitland on Wednesday, February 25.
The event will see a panel of experts discussing the floods and their representation in media and the regional premiere of the digital restoration of the Australian classic film Newsfront.
Maitland City Library and the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, in association with Reading Cinemas, have partnered to present this unique event, to mark the 60th anniversary of the floods and reflect on the lasting legacy they left upon Maitland and the region.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 29, 2015.

1955 Maitland Flood: Taking a walk on the wild side

From the Maitland Mercury report:
There is an Irish saying that Maitland flood historian Peter Bogan likes to recite.
"The telling and re-telling and sharing of stories keeps the memories alive.”
So important are the sharing of the 1955 Maitland flood stories, Mr Bogan has made it his mission to make sure they are not forgotten, to ensure the same mistakes are not made and lives are not lost in future flood events.
Mr Bogan will lead guided walking tours, equipped with historical photographs, to mark the 60th anniversary of the catastrophic 1955 Maitland flood with the support of the NSW State Emergency Service Hunter region and Hunter Local Land Services.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 29, 2015.

1955 Maitland Flood: Three free talks on region's flooding

From the Maitland Mercury report:
Flood consultant Chas Keys will deliver three talks to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the 1955 flood at Maitland and District Historical Society from next week.
Topics include the psychology of flooding – floods in the minds of Maitlanders on Tuesday February 3; the impact of floods, flood mitigation and urban development on Tuesday, February 24 and the experience of evacuation on Tuesday, March 3.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 29, 2015.

1955 Maitland Flood: Workshops, tours, exhibition mark 60th anniversary

From the Maitland Mercury report:
The 60th anniversary of the highest and most destructive flood on record in the Hunter Valley will be commemorated with a series of events this month.

The 1955 flood saw thousands of people rescued, hundreds of homes washed away and destroyed and 14 lives lost, including 11 in Maitland.
Workshops, walking tours, exhibitions and bus tours will be staged for the ­community to learn about Maitland’s dramatic flooding history, while ­increasing awareness about ­today’s flood risk and how to prepare for ­potentially dangerous flood events.

A key event is the 1955 Hunter Valley Flood Exhibition to be held over two days at Maitland Town Hall on February 21 and 22.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 29, 2015.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Gallipoli 1915: a century on

Gallipoli 1915: a century on

On the centenary of Gallipoli, Australia’s national memorial and museum of war joins with Australia’s national university to host this major international conference. Leading historians from all the countries who contributed forces to the campaign will present the most current perspectives on the many faces of Gallipoli.

An international conference hosted by the Australian War Memorial and the Australian National University
Llewellyn Hall, Australian National University, Canberra
18-20 March 2015

Black Friday guest lock-up at Maitland Gaol

From the Maitland Mercury report:
Maitland Gaol will once again be locking its guests in for the night on Friday the 13th. Participants are being warned to prepare for the fright of their lives as they delve into the mystery of Maitland Gaol’s past and spend an entire night in a cold, dark cell of the notorious building.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 28, 2015.

Council backs call for Maitland Hall of Fame

From the Maitland Mercury report:
Maitland will soon have an online hall of fame to celebrate the city’s high achievers.
But Maitland City councillor Brian Burke says that could be just the beginning.
Council has approved plans for a Maitland Hall of Fame to be established on the council website, featuring notable citizens who have excelled in the arenas of sport, the arts, academia, business and public service.
Cr Burke said he had wanted a Maitland Hall of Fame to be established since the late 1990s.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Jan. 27, 2015.

Do you remember the jacarandas? Horseshoe Bend, Maitland

From the Maitland Mercury report:
And to my good dear friends a jacaranda question I send: did you ever see them down in Horseshoe Bend?
Did you ever see them from there on the old Bundy Hill, did you see them bright and know again that thrill? Did you watch them gentle fall atop your car; did you ever see them  carpet the tar?
And did you ever see the way they columned old Carrington Street, the way they were easy in the soft spring heat? Did you ever see them shade the barefoot kids and make a  house or a swaying ship, for muddy little Maitland feet?
Tim Mallon.

Full article available at Maitland Mercury,

Society of Australian Genealogists - February 2015

February 2015 activities:
Thursday 19 February (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Life and Death in Quarantine
Sailing to Australia was a surprisingly healthy experience for many people in the nineteenth century. But when disease broke out on the confines of a ship, layers of discipline, confinement and treatment were quickly imposed. How did immigrants and travellers cope with being quarantined at Sydney's North Head? Why were some given stout to drink and others permitted to swim, while their shipmates were cast aboard a hulk surrounded by those dying of smallpox? This talk draws out some cases from the history of Sydney's former Quarantine Station to explore life and death in this surprising place. Join Dr Peter Hobbins in this fascinating talk, which can be complemented with a tour of the Station the following week, on February 26. Bookings essential. $20 ($30 non-members).

Saturday 21 February (10.30am - 12.30pm) - An Introduction to Scottish Family History
Researchers with Scottish ancestry are fortunate that there is a large amount of information online for them to use which can help establish details of their Scottish heritage. This talk will discuss the digital resources such as ScotlandsPeople that play such an important part in Scottish research and will also address the question of ‘where to go next’ so that a fully rounded family history can be uncovered. Presenter: Jeremy Palmer. Bookings essential. $20 ($30 non-members).

Saturday 28 February (10.30am - 12.30pm) - English Research Group - Having a Yarn about the British Woollen Industry
Did your ancestor work in the Woollen trade? This industry was a major employer and played an important part in the English economy. Looking into the lives and tasks of our ancestors involved in the industry and the records they left behind. Presenter - Pauline Kettle. Bookings essential. $8 ($12 non-members).

  • Saturday 28 February (1.30pm - 3.30pm) - Immigration Records at State Records NSW
    Feel the salt spray and hear the seagulls as the State Records NSW talk on Immigration outlines and showcases a wide variety of immigration records available at State Records NSW and online.The talk will overview Immigration ‘at His Majesty's pleasure’ (i.e. the transportation of convicts) and explain the mysteries of the Assisted Immigration programs. The talk will include unassisted immigration and reveal differences in the records with a wide variety of images. It will also showcase the diary of an immigrant providing fascinating insight into the difficulties faced by our ancestors. ‘No rowboat has been left unturned’ in our effort to add experience to researchers of their family history. Presenter: John Cann. Bookings essential. $20 ($30 non-members).
  • A convict in the family? Newcastle Museum

    A Convict in the family? showcases the rich, large-scale photographs of documentary photographer Mine Konakci. The works reveal the connections between convict settlers, their direct descendants and the petty crimes that changed the course of their families' histories.

    A travelling exhibition from Sydney Living Museums.

    10 February 2015 - 26 April 2015    Newcastle Museum.