Saturday, May 6, 2017

May 6

1839 - A mere four years after he'd ambled along the Yarra and thought "Crikey, this would be a great spot for a pub to brew beer,throw a fishing line in or a big blokey shed, probably best to go with a village" John Batman popped his clogs from Syphilis.
Ahhh, syphilis...the gift that just keeps on giving while turning your brain into Swiss cheese.



1862 - The first recorded brew of Thomas Cooper's now famous Sparkling Ale was made on this day.
Bottoms up !

1872 - Adelaide was awash with champers, streamers and giggles - no, the navy was not in town for the day - the GPO in King William Street was officially opened.

1875 - Ernest Giles buggered off on his final expedition, crossing the western deserts twice.

1886 - The St James to Yarrawonga branch line (VIC) greased its rails and started work.

1887 - A meeting at the Melbourne Town Hall launched the Working Men's College in Melbourne, the dream of Francis Ormond to enable working men to receive a good technical education. The 'Argus' noted the large number of working men present encouraged to support the new institution.

1917 – Irish-born Daniel Mannix was all frocked up with somewhere to go when he became the Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne, succeeding the deceased Thomas Carr.


1925 - The Hopetoun to Patchewollock railway line (VIC) opened.

1968 - The Portland North to Portland railway line VIC) closed.

1969 - What later became a frequent and notorious address call-out for police the Kurringal flats complex opened in Fannie Bay, Darwin.

1982 - The Minister for Defence announced the inclusion of girls in the AIRTC aka Australian Air Force Cadets.

2001 - Celebrations for the centenary of Federation opened in Melbourne with a street procession, 'Our Nation on Parade', down Swanston Street.


2005 - The world - or at least Oz - first came to hear of a woman called Vivian Solon who was illegally deported from Oz.
Yes, desperate asylum seekers are forbidden into the country....yet the lawful residents get shipped out, too.....
Hey, Turnbull...? Chuck us a pair of floaties for the trip, mate?

Friday, May 5, 2017

May 5

1826 - The hangman at Hobart was a busy chappy today with the neck stretching of the following lucky contestants...
Samuel Hodgetts - Hanged at Hobart for Murder, robberies and bushranging
James McKenney - Hanged at Hobart for Murder, robberies and bushranging
James Goodwin - Hanged at Hobart for Murder, robberies and bushranging
John Gregory - Hanged at Hobart for Murder, robberies and bushranging
John Tilley - Hanged at Hobart for Murder, robberies and bushranging
William Brown - Hanged at Hobart for Murder, robberies and bushranging

1828 - William Regan was hanged at Sydney for the murder of James Davis in Castlereagh St.
1840 - A public meeting in Melbourne decided they no longer agreed with their northern cousin's style of petticoat wearing whilst playing football and petitioned for a formal separation from NSW.

1854 - Charles La Trobe stepped down as Lt-Gov of Victoria and, having packed his bat and ball, sailed for England the next day.

1858 - Henry Madigan was hanged at Launceston for fratricide at Prosser's Forest, Ravenswood.
1862 - Henry Keene ,Bushranger, was hanged at Goulburn for the murder of James Lawrie.

1862 - Benjamin Allerton , Bushranger, was hanged at Goulburn for robbery and wounding with intent at Wakool.

1865 - Ben Hall, a bloke pushed into bushranging like Ned Kelly, was shot dead in NSW.

1872 - The Main North Railway Line (NSW) was opened from Wingen to Murrurundi.

1893 - The banks were having a bit of a bad patch with The Colonial Bank of Australasia, Qld National Bank and Bank of North Qld, Commercial Banking Company of Sydney, City of Melbourne Bank and Royal Bank of Qld all suspending payments and closing their doors from May 5th - May 17th after which they eventually reopened after massive "restructuring".

1894 - The Aussie term "Fair dinkum" appeared in print for the first time, in the fair dinkum bushies bible, The Bulletin.

1906 - Electric trams began tootling their way from St Kilda to Brighton, also known as the "bush tramway", to convey those whose long noses looked down upon St Kilda but found the same coast line more agreeable in Brighton.

1910 - Carlos Augustus Bonello was hanged at Adelaide Gaol for the murder of Norma Plush at Siegersdorf.

1913 - Yarralumla was snapped up for a song by the Commonwealth as the Gov-Gen's official residence in Canberra.

1921 - The Beetomba to Cudgewa railway line (VIC) opened .

1930 - Lord Somers opened the East Malvern to Glen Waverley railway line (VIC) that was kitted out with those new electric train services.
1956 - Fawkner to Somerton railway line (VIC) was closed.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

May 4

1826 - Matthew Brady, the Gentleman Bushranger who had been captured by the bounty hunter and Melbourne's founder John Batman, was hanged.

1842 - The colony of the Moreton Bay District was declared a free settlement.

1847 - Earl Grey, having partaken of his cuppa, closed the convict establishment in NSW and kicked all the convicts down south to Tassie.

1852 - The Second Gold Escort rocked up in Adelaide, returning wealth from the Victorian goldfields to the colony of South Australia.
Hmmm, got our gold there, Croweaters?
How about you toss it back here....we'll give back the Grand Prix....


1864 - The first trout eggs introduced to Australia began to hatch.
Surprisingly, they were itty bitty trout.
Not the 2 headed Cthulhu dragon of legend.

1866 - The General Grant (a ship not an army person!) sailed out of Melbourne to London in 1866 (why they couldn't enjoy the sightseeing here I don't know, the weather's nicer for one thing and you get those dinky umbrellas in your cocktails...) but it sort of crunched into cliffs on the Auckland Islands and it was tears before bedtime.


1868 - Oh, can't you feel the thrills running up your spine when I whisper in your shell-like ear that ink and paper were produced for the first time in Oz on this date in 1868?
If you keep snoring like that I shall poke you with something sharp.

1871 - Melbourne's Alfred Hospital was opened with a flourish and it's doors have never closed since.

1877 - The Victorian Football Association was formed as the controlling body for Australian Rules Football.


1897 - The first ocean-going steamer parked its prow at the newly constructed Fremantle Harbour.

1897 - Future Prez of the USA, Herbert Hoover, made his grand entrance to Coolgardie where he was a rep of a mining consultation firm. 1909 - Proving pollies are forever muddying the waters, a Royal Commission was established into the Murray Waters....and they're still mucking about with that pond of H2o today.

1910 - Royal Commission appointed to inquire into the claims arising out of the contract entered into between Peter Rodger and the Victorian Railways Commissioners for the erection of Flinders Street new Station Buildings.
Proof that the damn building was NOT INTENDED FOR INDIA.

1912 - Steele Rudd's play, On Our Selection, which gave us Dad and Dave, was debuted in Sydney.

1917 and a Zepplin dropped a shedload of shite on HMAS Sydney.


1922 - That banned book...you know, the one they held a trial over...and then banned the book of the trial itself...full of sex...the book, not the trial...something to do with a green thumb..anyway, the author, (who hadn't penned his adult book yet) DH Lawrence rocked up to Fremantle in 1922.

1935 saw those speed-demons getting all flustered and excited when the very first Australian Midget Auto Racing Championship was held at Melbourne's Olympic Park.


1974 - AAMI Stadium in Sth Oz saw it's first bit 'o' flesh action in 1974 when Central District and North Adelaide had at it.

1988 - QEII beamed down from the mothership, yet again, and officiated at the opening of the Darling Harbour redevelopment.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May 3

1804 - Risdon Cove in 1804 was the site of a massacre of a large number of Aboriginal persons, some state between 300-600, with a couple of historians disputing the facts despite well-documented eye witness accounts.


1820 – John Joseph Therry and Philip Conolly, the first appointed frocked up Roman Catholic priests in Oz, rocked up in Sydney.


1840 – New Zealand was officially proclaimed a separate colony from New South Wales...something the Kiwis are still celebrating today.

1847 - Ladies of Australia & New Zealand rejoice!
For today the news of ether anesthesia reached our far shores via the ship The Lightning in 1847, bringing with it the news that we can all get knocked out whilst in childbirth and wake up to a bouncing squalling babe who looks nothing like the placid ink drawings in those outdated mothercraft booklets the schools handed out as part of sex ed.

1851 - The Sydney Ducks (NOT the Sydney Swans!) were blamed for a fire which broke out following a severe earthquake on May 1. Looting was rife, and blame centred on the Australians when a man recognised as a Sydney-Towner was seen running from a paint shop shortly before it exploded in flames. The area remained notorious for its vicious crimes until Sydney Duck member John Jenkins was lynched by vigilantes on 10 June 1851. Following his hanging, the population of Sydney Town dropped significantly as many Australians fled the area.

1879 - Unauthorised piracy abounded in 1879 when HMS Pinafore opened at the Sydney School of Arts.

1910 - Gunzels galore, celebrate the opening of the narrow gauge railway line (VIC) from Moe to Walhalla !

1917 - Second attack on Bullecourt ;Operations against the Hindenburg line at Bullecourt were aimed at protecting the British flank during operations at Arras. After a disastrous first attempt, a second involving the 2nd Australian Division was made. That attack succeeded, at a cost of about 7,000 allied casualties.
1926 - The first named train on Victoria Railways, the Geelong Flier, began ripping up the rails.

1927 - Those new-fangled commuters were treated to a new railway line when the Goroke to Carpolac (VIC) line opened.

1927 - The All-Australian Trade Union Congress opened in Melbourne at the Trades Hall with W.J. Duggan of the Trades Hall as Chairman. There were 159 delegates from 108 unions and branches, mostly from Victoria, who went on at this Congress to found the Australasian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU).

1964 - Canberra in 1964 and those party animals were reporting seeing UFOs playing aerial ping pong with each other.
Yes, Canberra...that hotbed of excitement and beige tweed.

1970 – In another boring duty day Queen Elizabeth II opened a new international passenger terminal at Sydney Airport , in Mascot, New South Wales, in an event that is apparently deemed historical *yawn*.

2004 - Seeing the error of their ways Them In Power reopened the Sale to Bairnsdale (VIC) railway line to passenger traffic.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

May 2

1788 - John Bennett had a very foreshortened future as a 20-year-old convict when he was publicly hanged at Sydney Cove for theft.

1829 - Today saw Charlie Fremantle kicking his heels, complaining of being bored so his parents told him to go outside to play; he trotted off and ran a flag up the flagpole at the head of the Swan River.
Which was only slightly better than running his mother's bloomers up the mast in place of the sails.


1838 - Michael Magee was having a pretty crap day when he earned the distinction of being the first bloke to be hanged in South Oz.

1843 - Matthew Whittle had the pleasure of the company of the hangman whilst he was hanged at Bathurst for the attempted murder of Patrick Grady.

1864 - The Morpeth Railway Line (NSW) was opened.


1891 - A man hunt lasting almost three years followed the spearing by Aboriginal people of S Murskiewicz at Dora Dora Creek, 68km from Albury. The two Aboriginal people responsible were finally caught in Queensland.

1896 - Goulam Mahomet was stretched by the neck at Fremantle Prison for murder of Tagh Mahomet in the Mosque at Coolgardie.

1904 - The Adelaide Fruit and Produce Exchange on East Terrace opened for business.

1941 Saw it announced that cars, trucks, motorbikes and broomsticks were being conscripted for the war effort.

1944 - Prime Minister Curtin had a bite to eat and a chinwag with them what live in Buck Palace .Oh, and he nattered with other leaders on some little dispute going on around the world.

1953 - Victorian Liberal minister and lawyer, Trevor Donald Oldham, 53, and his wife, Kathleen, were killed in an air crash in India near Calcutta while on their way to the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in London.

1965 - The North Fitzroy to Rushall Railway line (Vic) was rudely closed.


1983 - 61 year old farmer Cliff Young wins 875 km Sydney-Melbourne footrace in five days, 14 hours.

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