Grand Years with Frank Morris

Number of blogs returned: 1 to 10 records of 154

BRING ON SPRING! When you're allergy-free there's nothing to sneeze about

NATURAL BEAUTY: A SMALL CHILD HAS THE SNEEZES. HOPE SHE REMEMBERS TO TAKE HOME A BUNCH OF THESE WILDFLOWERS FOR HER MOTHER FOR SPRING.

The creation of anything allergy-free will minimise allergic reaction.

Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

The major culprit in springtime hay fever is pollen which are tiny particles that are released from trees, weeds, and grasses to fertilise other plants.

For reasons that are largely unknown, some people are hypersensitive or allergic to pollen. Unfortunately, there is no way to completely avoid wind-borne pollen; but you can take steps to minimise your exposure to pollen, especially around your own home and garden.

The best course is to limit your exposure to allergens!

If you’re among the estimated one in three Australians who suffer from seasonal allergic hay fever, don’t despair. To help remedy the ordeal, here is the creation of allergy-free gardens and preventive supplements to lessen allergic reactions.

FOLLOW THIS ROUTINE

Allergy-free gardens are very much in vogue. It is easy to find useful and practical advice, for example, which plants to avoid and which to use in your gardens. The Internet provides a list on allergy-free gardens for more information.
Your local garden centre has timely information about the type of allergy-free plants best suited for your region of the country. Nevertheless, try this routine when you are next gardening:

GARDEN on days when pollen count is low; or on days that are cool, cloudy or less windy.

WEAR gloves, a long-sleeved shirt; hat and sunglasses or goggles. Even a pollen mask may be useful.

AVOID touching your face and eyes when you are working in the garden.

AVOID certain tasks that can aggravate symptoms: mowing, raking, composting and working with mulch or straw; or using power blowers.

KEEP the windows of your house closed when mowing; and for a few hours later.

ATTACK those weeds early and regularly, but in short bursts.

NOTE -- Try vitamin and mineral supplements which can boost your immunity against allergens; also, they are an excellent preventive. Some active recommendations are Garlic, Horseradish, and Vitamin C.

<< Healthy Life Magazine, for a natural health foods.

Picture: Spring time is here. Come on, your allergy-free garden is calling!


COULDN’T TELL: A SPIRITED MAGPIE SWOOPS ON MILO THE DOG. THE MAGPIE COULDN’T DETERMINE WHETHER IT WAS MAN, WOMAN OR CHILD -- HIS ATTACK WAS THE SAME.

BRING ON SPRING! PART 1. THE BIRDS ARE COMING!

The magpies are swooping – in droves.

FRANK MORRIS

“Cyclists are warned to look out for magpies” was one article in a Fairfax newspaper. This warning got cyclists on the tip of their toes if they saw magpies threaten their safety.

“My wife was attacked recently walking up close to a clump of trees and she was swooped on by a magpie; she got the fright of her life,” said Mr Wilson told Grand Years.

One letter writer told the newspaper that “magpies have been a problem in his neighbourhood since 2012.” He said, “I was delivering leaflets for a major retailer … and ended up avoiding the swooping season.

“A nest is located at an intersection which is used by people and cyclists. If a person was swooped, the panic or reaction to an injury could cause them to lose sense of direction and be knocked over.”

The writer says, “What happens if they are knocked of their bikes … lose control” and they are run over?

BE READY TO DUCK

Another writer says, “I got swooped on four times just by walking down my street.” Another says, “Make friends early. Magpies have great memories and if you toss then mince or other scraps, they regard you as a friend and do not swoop.”

David Davies, a photographer and cartoonist, a keen magpie watcher, said a magpie swooping on people is only when they are protecting their young. He said: “By and large, they are a friendly type of bird.”

Now, you may be warned to “look up’ the next time you are near trees and be ready ‘to duck’ if there’s a magpie in the air.

For an immediate alert, people must know that the swooping season starts in mid-August – not mid-September – so that we have a long way to run.

ATTACK THE FACE

“The male birds get a big boost of testosterone and all they want do is protect their young,” said the Broadsheets, Melbourne.

To date there have been 849 attacks since mid-July across Australia, out of which 109 people have been injured, usually the head or neck and sometimes in the face.

While statewide there have 37 per cent in Queensland, 30 per cent in NSW and 20 per cent in Victoria.
People, it’s been reported, are likely to be attacked in places with high foot traffic.

<< Adapted from Fairfax Community Newspapers.

Picture: Friendly fellow: The magpies, by and large, are a bird that acts on amicable terms.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 14 September 17

IT'S THE MAIL AGAIN!

IT’S THE MAIL AGAIN! THAT’S WHY YOU DIDN’T GET GRAND YEARS ON FRIDAY, IT’S NORMAL DAY OF PUBLICATION. THE MAIL WAS POSTED LAST MONDAY. AS I WRITE THIS MESSAGE THE MAIL STILL HAD NOT ARRIVED. FRANK MORRIS, EDITOR.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 11 September 17

FLASHBACK, 105 YEARS: Titanic – and the man who never was!

THE ‘UNSINKABLE’ SINKING: NOW, IN HER LAST POSITION, WITH THE STERN OF THE TITANIC POINTING TOWARDS THE SKY FOR FIVE MINUTES, SHE TOOK HER FINAL PLUNGE.

“I couldn’t contain myself,” said Frank Morris. “The ship, what ship?”

FRANK MORRIS

The autumnal afternoon shadows have begun to fall like a damask curtain over this city. The year was 1974. It has been a perfect, April day.

It was mid-afternoon when I walked out of the building and headed for the bar. Today was a slow-news day. It left me feeling bedraggled.

When I reached the wine bar the shower had now dissipated. When I walked in there were a few people talking to Wendy, the hostess. Wendy spotted me. She poured a glass of white wine and pushed it towards me, and disappeared.

I looked at the railway clock perched on the far wall. It was 3.30pm. I flicked through the late final editions of both newspapers. Newswise, it had been a slow day.

Rain is a funny thing. It comes and it goes. I found myself humming this poem:

The rain has drifted,
The cloud filled heaven shines softy.
Still is the air, the sea is calm.

I hummed away.

HE MADE HIMSELF COMFORTABLE

Then I searched for my papers. I was going home.

“Are you looking for these,” he asked. His presence had snapped me out of my reverie. He was clean-shaven, had thin hair and dressed in an expensive suit.

He made himself comfortable. “You don’t mind if I berth here, my friend. I need to rest awhile.”

Can I buy you a beer. He shook his head.

“April is a very sad period for me. My mother and uncle drowned sixty-two years ago. As old as I am, I find it hard to go to asleep at night. I was in a small boat with seventy-odd survivors when the ship went down. I was six at the time.”

I couldn’t contain myself. The ship, what ship? The gentleman was pulling a yellowed fragment of well-thumbed newsprint from his wallet, and handed it to me.

A SMATTERING OF HEADLINES

Sydney Morning Herald, April (could not decipher the date) 1912. It showed the Titanic leaving Portsmouth and a smattering of several decked headlines. Titanic Sunk/An Appalling Disaster/Over 1000 lose their lives.

“The night is as vivid as this minute and it was over sixty years ago,” he said. “I see the rest of the family from time to time …”

I interrupted the storyteller.

I want to race back to the office a get my tape recorder. I’d like to write a story about you. He shrugged his shoulders; his eyes glazed over. I was gone about 10 minutes. When I got back to the wine bar the old man was gone.

He was nowhere to be seen. He had scarpered; done a bunk.

I caught Wendy’s eye. What happened to the old gent who I was talking to a few minutes ago?

This is Twilight Zone stuff. Did I imagine this encounter? I headed for home.

But it wasn’t over yet.

I glanced at the date on the newspaper, just to make sure. It was April 15 – the day the Titanic sunk. It was a day I’ll never forget.

This is a true story. It did happen … or I think it DID. It’s a conundrum. But I’ll never forget it. Now, see if you believe it.

<< From Grand Years 5 years ago.

Pictures: Many notable people missing. Mrs Astor was gone and so many other notables, like writer, W. T. Stead, two of the most famous to lose their life on the Titanic. Against the 866 rescued from Titanic, which took 4 hours to sink and over 1250 went down with the ship. Fire underneath. On the outside of the ship, under the first funnel, there was a burn mark which indicates that there was a fire alight in that boiler. Only about half a dozen crew knew of the incident; none of the passengers and rest of the crew knew about it.


TITANIC MAKES HEADLINES: THE RMS TITANIC SEEN ENTERING A NEW REALM, SYDNEY HARBOUR.

YOU’RE INVITED! FAMOUS TITANIC VOYAGE TO THE HABOUR

FRANK MORRIS

Up to 1000 passengers will be at James Cameron’s mega-hit movie, Titanic, from 1997, while they’re enjoying a time-lapse into 1912. The box-office certainly knows what it’s doing. After they buy their tickets, for first, second and third-class decks, they “dress up” in outfits from 1912.

And not only that, they will eat a meal appropriate to each class. Actors will be on board to help “simulate” the experience of being on the ship.

TITANIC SYDNEY BOUND

“The organisers are calling it an immersive cinema observation – but not too immersive. With cinema operators looking for ever more innovative ways to turn movie-going into an event,” the report said.

Nobody will end up in the water, said a Beyond Cinema spokesperson. The company is planning to recreate the Titanic’s ill-fated maiden voyage on Sydney Harbour, said the report.

<< Also … Titanic: The Exhibition. Where you become the passenger. Byron Kennedy Hall, Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park, NSW.

Just some of the meals. If its luncheon you are par-taking it’s more than possible that these are the type of dishes that will be served.


ALBERT JACKA, VC: THE FAMOUS VC WINNER DODGED ENEMY BACKLASH AND WITH POINTED BAYONET MANAGED TO TAKE THE DUGOUT.

COMING: THE GREAT WAR … THE CAPTAIN JACKA STORY. Albert Jacka, who helped forge the spirit of the ANZACS, performed acts of human courage that you would not believe. The editor of Go55 Newspaper, John McNamee, wrote in profile, that “in bitter fighting at Pozieres, Jacka recaptured … heavily defended trench, freed a group … of captured Australians … and forced the surrender of 50 Germans.” There’s much more. But we will let you read the rest of the Jacka story -- end of the month. In each issue, Mr McNamee tells a story about other spirited Aussies. You can read or view on www.go55s.com.au


FUN FOR EVERYONE! THE LONDON MAIL RAIL IS OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

INSIDE NEWSPAPERS: CITY A.M, LONDON: FIRST CLASS FUN

Not even the Blitz could stop the London Mail Rail from running. It is open to the public for the first time as part of a celebration of postal institution.

The Mail Rail will allow visitors to take a ride in special underground tunnels that have lain abandoned for years. The attraction is part of the new Postal Museum that retraces the vital role Britain’s Royal Mail played over its 500-year history.

The now-listed company can be traced back to King Henry Vlll.

<< From City A.M. newspaper, London, this year.


COMING NEXT YEAR! Series two -- Australian Chronicle Newspaper: Making Our Nation
What year was the first world “heavyweight championship” on a scale never before attempted? What year did Mrs Gunn write her immortal classic, We Of The Never-Never? What year did General-Motors-Holden release its new Australian-made Holden? What year did the Prime Minister Mr Menzies’s start his drive against communism.


PARKES OBSERVATORY: REPECTED ASTRONOMER ERIC HILL.

COMPUTER MILESTONES: FINAL! FROM PROCESSING TO DIGITAL

PDP-9 with astronomer Eric Hill, gives the first Apollo moon landing a link with Australia!

FRANK MORRIS

Tim Berners-Lee in 1990 designed the World Wide Web with URLs, HTTP and HTML.

Commercial operation of the first GSM networks started in European countries in 1991. By the beginning of 1995, over 60 countries would have operational or planned GSM networks, including Australia.

In 1993, the development of the Intel Pentium processor marked a new era in PC power; while the first Web browser, NCSA Mosaic, was developed and released this year.

The Australian Computer Museum Society in 1994 was formed to foster the preservation of historic computing items around the nation for the benefit of future generations. First release also of the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) Protocol for Web browsers. An updated version of SSL is currently bring used to secure transactions over the Internet.

‘THE DISH’ USED APOLLO MOONWALK

South Australian Electricity Trust in 1998 decommissioned the Torrens Island Power Station computer that had been providing boiler house control for 33 years. This massive parallel processor computer, which cost about $2 million to install, was housed in bullet proof cabinets to ensure its survival if any of the boilers exploded.

When movie-makers were producing the Australian box office hit film, The Dish, in 1999, they borrowed a Digital PDP-9 computer from Max Burnet collection of the Australian Computer Museum Society warehouse-museum. The PDP-9 they used was actually the original computer that had been in operation at the Parkes Observatory, used by Eric Hill, at the time of the first Apollo moon landing, July 21, 1969. It provided the sole link between the Earth and the Apollo craft during the historic moonwalk.

<< ACS milestones were used in a 4-page double spread advertisement in The Australian, November 6, 2001

Picture: Safe landing. The Apollo 11 Lunar Module, Eagle, touched down on the Sea of Tranquillity on the morning of Monday, July 21, 1969, Australian time. Australia was watching!

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 01 September 17

SPECIAL FEATURE: Part 2. Sherlock Holmes and Friend … the varying degrees of personifying!

ITS HAS A GOOD CHANCE: SILVER BLAZE LIKES THE LOOK OF SHERLOCK HOLMES AND AGREES WITH HIM.

Sidney Paget received only a nod in John Dickenson’s authorised biography of Holmes creator Conan Doyle. Yet, it is believed, the Doyle’s character of Sherlock Holmes, thanks to Paget, did much to fix him in the public mind.

FRANK MORRIS

Sidney Paget was educated at a private city school, studied the antiques at the British Museum for two years, then went to Heatherley’s School of Art in Norman Street, London, to study painting, and the Royal Academy.

When he was eighteen years old, Paget exhibited two pictures at the Royal Academy School. He then took a studio and began painting portraits and small pictures, and illustrations – chiefly on war subjects of Egypt and the Sudan – for books, magazines and newspapers; among them The Illustrated London News, Graphic and Sphere.

At twenty-one, Paget entered the Royal Academy. Over the next six years, he carried off several important prizes: a bronze medal in the prestigious Armitage Award; in 1884, for an historical painting in which he tied with the gold medallist.

He also won prizes with the illustrations for A Scandal in Bohemia, the first Sherlock Holmes story which appeared in the seventh edition of The Strand in July, 1891.

FICTIOUS EVENTS

An interesting feature of the Holmes stories is that their verisimilitude is heightened by the careful dating of the fictitious events: but these dates do not relate to the date of publication. The Scandal in Bohemia, for example, is dated as taking place between May 20 to May, 22, 1887. But the story was published in July 1891.

Another similar case was the Holmes story The Resident Patient, which was also illustrated by Paget, covered the period October 6 to October 7, 1886, but was not published in The Strand until 1893.

When the hand-written manuscripts of the first two Holmes stories, The Scandal in Bohemia and The Red-Headed League, The Strand’s literary editor, Greenhough Smith described the occasion as “a gift from Heaven”.

Smith who, according to Pound, had “a dry, sparing smile and clinically detached manner that suggested recondite inner sources, recalled forty years later that he “at once realised that here was the greatest short writer since Edgar Allan Poe.”

IT HAPPENED AT A RECITAL

The famous Holmes physiognomy was inspired by the profile of one of Paget’s two artist brothers, Walter. The cast of his brother’s features instantly “crystallised” Holmes in his mind. In 1954, Paget’s daughter, Winifred, wrote a memoir for John O’London’s Weekly, in which she recalled “the charm and nostalgia” of her father’s association with Sherlock Holmes.

She wrote that when her Uncle Walter was walking to his seat at a London recital, a woman in the audience exclaimed, “Why, there’s Sherlock Holmes!”

Julian Symonds, noted crime writer and Sherlock Holmes-watcher, said “in 1897 Conon Doyle wrote the play called Sherlock Holmes and sent it to the famous actor-manager Beerbohm Tree. It was sold eventually by the author’s agent to the American actor William Gillette.

“(Gillette) assembled the drawings of Holmes made by the artist, Sidney Paget, so remarkably that the first sight of him took Conan Doyle’s breath away!”

<< Frank Morris and Frank G. Greenop wrote the storyline in 1974 (?). Frank Morris wrote the article in 2001. Remained unpublished until this edition of Grand Years.

Next month: There is no record of the exact time Paget and Doyle met. But Paget thinks is has something to do with Royalty.

Pictures: Relaxing. Holmes in a blue bathrobe and smoking his pipe. Deep thinker! Now, listen here! Watson gets an earful of a tricky case he is working on.


BLOOD PRESSURE: MARIA VENUTI ON THE UNEXPECTED JOURNEY.

EXCLUSIVE! MARIA VENUTI’S UNEXPECTED JOURNEY FOR A SINGER THAT IS WELL-TRAVELLED

Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

The life of both Maria Venuti and her daughter, Bianca, changed in an instant. Late in 2016, Maria suffered a major stroke. Not only is Bianca sharing their journey, she has also followed in her mother’s footsteps by signing up as an Ambassador for the Stroke Foundation. Bianca spoke about her new role.

Tell us about your experience of stroke?

Maria Venuti, my amazing mum, had a major haemorrhagic stroke resulting in significant bleeding in her brain a little over six months ago. Even though mum had experienced brief periods of high blood pressure, it was much unexpected and a huge shock.

It was one of those mornings where I just thought I would pop in and see mum; but she rang me in a panic. Talking with her on the phone, I could hear in her voice how distressed she was; and within five minutes she was unconscious. The ambulance was called and I think in the back of my mind I was hoping it wasn’t a stroke. But, realistically, I knew it would be.

All of a sudden I was thinking: well, I hope it isn’t a bad stroke. And, of course, it was one of the worst kinds. It quickly became all about survival.

How did your life change in that moment?

(Our) lives were turned upside down. Recovery and rehad has been a slow process. Mum needs round-the-clock care and a long and challenging rehabilitation process. She is making great progress, though, and I’m proud of how far she has come. Luckily, she is still in that beautiful, vibrant soul Australia knows so well.

How do you keep your mum motivated in her rehabilitation?

(Laughing). We have a star system. It’s like your back in primary school! For every milestone achieved, she gets a gold star to celebrate. Like when she got out of intensive care: when, for the first time, she said a word, for the first time she could speak my name. There are still plenty of gold stars ahead, so we just celebrate each win on the journey.

It’s caused a big change in your life hasn’t it?

Taking care of mum is now a huge part of my everyday life. I know there are many Australians going through the same journey. It’s still very difficult, but things are getting better every week. Mum is indeed very loved. Mum and I are a family of two. She is my best friend, I am her best friend. Post the stroke, I feel very blessed and comforted to be able to spend every day with my wonderful mum – although it can be very challenging.

Her spirit is still there, which is the important thing, but it’s a challenge. Because she loves to talk and sing, these are things she can’t do that well at the moment.

<< Stroke Matters, Winter 2017.

Frank Morris comment: Bianca signed up as an Ambassador for the Stoke Foundation’s major public campaign – Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check.

Pictures: Special friends. The Studio 10 presenters get to discuss with Bianca (left) her role with her mother, Maria Venuti, dealing with a stroke. Never alone. Her spirit is still there, said Bianca.

PETROV AFFAIR: AT 2SM, GARY O’CALLAGHAN (FAR RIGHT), WITH A CROWD OF ONLOOKERS GATHERED AROUND, INTERVIEWS EVDOKIA PETROV AT MASCOT AIRPORT ON APRIL 19, 1954.

VALE: RADIO LEGEND AND KING OF COMEDY DEAD

FRANK MORRIS

Gary O’Callaghan, the “king” of breakfast announcers, a true legend, died at 83. He was a bloke who spoke about anything and everything. O’Callaghan worked for 2UE from the mid-1950s until 2003. When he left, he did other broadcasting in and around the country regions.

He introduced alter ego Sammy Sparrow to the show for a series of fast repartee and generations of school kids loved to listen.

A highlight of O’Callaghan’s career was being able to interview Mrs Evdokia Petrov, of the Petrov Affair, on his wind-up tape recorder in 1954.

Jerry Lewis, the slap-stick comedian, actor, film-maker, screenwriter and humanitarian, who rose to fame in the 1950s, died age 91. The coroner said his death was through heart failure.

Picture: One and only: Gary O’Callaghan at his favourite radio station, 2UE, in 1978.


THE PRESS SAYS! THE AMERICAN SENTINEL BROADCAST THE LATEST NEWS ON THE NORTH RUSSIAN FRONT.

THE GREAT WAR: FINAL! SERVICE IN NORTH RUSSIA – TWO AUSSIES WIN THE VICTORIA CROSS                                                 

MAX BALL - Adapted by Frank Morris

Arthur Percy Sullivan was born in Crystal Brook, South Australia, and enlisted in the AIF in Port Pirie on April 27, 1918. Sullivan was aged 21. He arrived in Britain in September 1918 and commenced training in the artillery; but was still in training when peace was declared; so he was not sent to France.

As 133033 in the British Army, Sullivan was also assigned to the 45th Bn Royal Fusiliers. A successful offensive action against the Red Army along the banks of the river Dvina (flowing south-east of Arkhangel), reached its end point at the village of Komichka; and the British force found itself at risk of being encircled by the Red forces.

At the hamlet of Sluda, the British force found themselves cut off by of Russian sailors (from river gunboats) and were forced to withdraw through a swamp, walking on planks. Lieutenant Charles Lennox-Gordon, (real title Lord Strettington), who was 20 years old, was hit in the chest by a bullet. Corporal Sullivan plunged into the swamp and passed him up to others still on the planks.

A SPLENDID TURN OF HEROISM

Three more fusiliers were hit and Sullivan helped them in a similar way. The citation records, “Without hesitation, under intense fire, Corporal Sullivan jumped into the river and rescued all four, bringing them out singly.” And, “It was a splendid example of heroism as all ranks were on the point of exhaustion, and the enemy less than 100 yards distant.”

Sullivan sail from England before he had been presented with his VC and returned to his previous employer, the National Bank. In 1937, he was the manager of the Bank’s branch in Casino, NSW and was selected to be a member of the Australian Coronation Contingent to attend to coronation of King George V1 in May 1937.
He accepted, but to do so had to re-enlist in the Australian Army; this time, as all members of the contingent, he had to be a gunner.

RUN DOWN BY A CYCLIST

The members of the Contingent received many invitations to many of the reunions and receptions. On April 9, 1937, returning from a reception, Sullivan stepped off a footpath into the path of a cyclist and was downed. He was rushed to hospital and found dead on arrival from a fractured skull.

The body of Arthur Sullivan VC was taken to Wellington Barracks to lay in state, with medal and plumed slouch hat. His funeral was attended by General Birdwood and a dozen British VC winners; a band of the Grenadier Guards led the funeral procession.

When the Australian Coronation Contingent marched in the coronation parade, the Australians deliberately left a gap in their ranks. In North Russia eight Australians also received the Distinguished Conduct Medal, five won the Military Medal; and three won bars to the Military Medal that they had won in the AIF.

During a recent visit to the Australian War Memorial, I was pleased to see that Samuel Pearse VC and Arthur Sullivan VC have their place in the Hall of Valour with the other 97 Australian recipients.

<< By Max Ball who based it on a “little-known chapter of Australia’s military history.” Camaraderie Magazine, No 2, 2016.

Picture: Two Aussies.  Samuel Pearse, Victoria Cross – “His magnificent and utter disregard for personal safety won for him the admiration of the troops … Corporal Arthur Sullivan, Victoria Cross – “With hesitation … under intense fire, Corporal Sullivan jumped  into the river … and rescued all four, bring them out singly.”

Next month: Captain Albert Jacka helped forge the spirit of the Anzacs. Two parts. By John McNamee, editor of the newspaper Go55s. Read it or view it on www.go55s.com.au

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 25 August 17

SPECIAL FEATURE: Sherlock Holmes and Friends – the varying degrees of personifying!

LISTEN QUIETLY: WHENEVER SHERLOCK HOLMES WAS DISCUSSING A CASE, YOU HAD TO TALK QUIETLY OTHERWISE YOU WOULD HAVE MISSED THE NUB OF THE STORY. HOLMES WOULD NOT REPEAT HIMSELF.

“Then he asked what I was reading. I was reading Sherlock Holmes. He adopted the voice of some elderly pedant who bids young people never to lay their Virgil aside. “My boy,” he said, “keep up your Holmes, don’t neglect your Holmes as you grow you older, so many young men do.” Desmond MacCarthy, journalist, critic and conversationalist in Bloomsbury Recalled by Quentin Bell.

FRANK MORRIS

Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts everywhere were fortunate that the editors of The Strand Magazine in England (1891-1950) and Collier’s Magazine in the United States (1888-1956) were able to leave behind such superb illustrations of Holmes as by Sidney Paget and Frederic Dorr Steele.

Paget, according to some Sherlock bibliophiles, was commissioned in error: the editors thought that they were commissioning his brother, Walter, who had made the drawings for H. Rider Haggard’s King Solomon’s Mines and She; also Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island.

After Sidney’s death Walter did illustrate a single Holmes story, The Adventures of the Dying Detective, which appeared in The Strand, December 1913.

In 1891, when the first series of six Holmes stories were published under the collective title of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes in The Strand, the author wrote to Alfred Harmsworth, the future Lord Northcliffe: “I agree with you that the illustrations are excellent. Sidney Paget is the name.”

PAGET WAS HIRED

Paget’s visualisation of Holmes was, opined Harmsworth, more explicit than the truncated description provided by the author. Doyle had originally seen Holmes with a thin razor-like face. “a great hawk’s-bill of a nose and two small eyes set close together.”

The art editor, W.J.K Boot, vice-president of the Royal Society of British Artists, whose services at The Strand spanned over 20 years, recognised the talent of Paget and brought the illustrator to the magazine.

There is no doubt that Paget’s drawings “did much to fix Holmes in the public mind,” writes Reginald Pound, a former editor of The Strand.

“Paget is only given a passing nod in John Dickerson Carr’s book. Carr was the authorised biographer of Conan Doyle,” says Pound. “Yet his idea of the appearance and style of Holmes was the model for many subsequent characterisations on stage and screen … each with varying degrees of fidelity, personified the Holmes of Paget’s imagination rather than Conan Doyle’s”.

Conan Doyle’s biographer, Hesketh Pearson, one of the best, says “It would be difficult to imagine a man less like this Holmes of print or picture. Incidentally, Holmes … was not as Doyle had pictured him.

DOYLE HAD NO RIVAL

”Sidney Paget, who did the first illustrations for The Strand took his younger brother, Walter, as a model.” But, originally, this outcome was not the way Doyle had seen him.

Pearson said that Paget “won the contest.” Holmes remains that of the popular fancy, reinforced by the detective’s impersonation on the stage and screen. There is no writer in English can capture and communicate the simple joy of physical energy and combat so infectiously as Doyle.

“Only Dumas can beat him at the game.

Of the Sherlock Holmes sagas, Pearson said. “They have a quality, at once amusing and exciting, peculiar to Doyle, and in which he alone has no rival.”

Born in London on October 4, 1860, Sidney Edward Paget was the fourth son of Robert Paget, a vestry clerk of the Old Government Board of Clerkenwell from 1856 to 1892. Paget senior also was said to be “a man of mature artistic tastes.”

At twenty-one Paget entered the Royal Academy.

<< Frank Morris and Frank G. Greenop wrote the storyline in 1974 (?); Frank Morris wrote the article in 2001. Remains unpublished until this edition of Grand Years.

Pictures: Paget won. Holmes did not look like anyone that Doyle had it mind. Holmesian view. Sherlock Holmes in the midst of doing a case-solving experiment; while Mr Watson looks on.


MM: A PUBLICITY SHOT OF MARILYN MONROE FOR THE FILM HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE.

SPECIAL FEATURE: MARILYN MONROE -- SHE WAS HOLLYWOOD’S MOST DESIREABLE WOMAN

“What good is it being Marilyn Monroe? Why can’t I be an ordinary woman? A woman who can have a family; I’d settle for just one.” Marilyn Monroe spoke these words a few months before she died.

FRANK MORRIS

Forty-eight years after her death Marilyn Monroe is still “big” business.

Scores of books have been written about her and thousands of items bearing her name – bedsheets, dolls, pillows and so on – have flooded the souvenir markets.

Monroe, who died of a drug overdose in August 1962, was allegedly having affairs with President John Kennedy and his brother, Bobby Kennedy.

But as far Kennedy was concerned he seemed oblivious to the risk. In his mind, sex and politics were not the same.

Seeing that Kennedy might be heading for the White House the mafia believed that it was a good idea in “getting a hook in him.” They even paid for his “personal” pleasure.

Meantime, while Bobby Kennedy was fighting the enemy JFK was sleeping with it. That was Kennedy right up until he was assassinated.

He didn’t realise it, but his gander was being primed.

MM WAS DESIRABLE

Ever since he was President, women used to appear and disappear like topsy.

After having lunch with FBI Chief, J. Edgar Hoover, Kennedy took Bobby aside and said: “Get rid of that bastard’s; he the biggest bore alive.”

Hoover had effectively warned him that “his life had become public interest.” JFK seemed to thrive on the danger. So far he was getting away with it.

After his “frustrating” affair with Judith Campbell he was “going at it” again with someone else; and the “someone else” was Hollywood’s most “desirable” woman, Marilyn Monroe.

One of the outstanding features about Marilyn was her seductiveness – she was a physically attractive looking creature.

But in the eyes of J. Edgar Hoover, Monroe was just as dangerous as Judith Campbell.

BRANDED A COMMUNIST

Documents recently released under the Freedom of Information Act revealed that the FBI thought Marilyn was a communist sympathiser.

She was in favour of civil rights, she married Arthur Miller and Miller had a background of being close to communism, and possibly been a member of the Communist Party himself. “She was certainly of the left,” said a spokesman.

President Kennedy, himself, was an uncompressing opponent of communist idealogues. Marilyn was branded a communist by the FBI, when she took a trip to Mexico in 1962.

“While there, she associated with a number of well-known American communists, including Frederick V. Steel, a longtime Maxist who had close links with other communists in Mexico.

“Here was an actress who gabbed too much to fully paid up communists about what she was learning, or thought she was learning, about US policy,” said a spokesman.

<< Adapted from several well-known books on MM life.

Pictures: Lady of the time. Marilyn Monroe as illustrated by Boris Chaliapin. Marilyn appeared in Time in May, 1956. Exclusive! Marilyn Monroe’s first cover appearance for Douglas Airview in January 1946.


MARILYN MONROE – 55 YEARS ON WHY SHE IS “BIG BUSINESS”

FRANK MORRIS

Marilyn Monroe died in 1962. But in popular culture the name of MM remained eminently high. Marilyn (Norma Jean Mortensen) was born in 1926; she starred in many popular movies including Men Prefer Blondes, Bus Stop, The Sleeping Prince and The Misfits.

Marilyn married Arthur Miller and Joe DiMaggio. After her death Miller penned After The Fall, a play about the marriage and suicide of “a neurotic actress.”

The writer says “he saw no irony in the line he wrote for her husband: “It’s not the money they take; it’s the dignity they destroy.” In her life and death Marilyn had been surrounded by a string of profiteers.

The writer: “She was on thousands of posters, T-shirts, toby jugs, plus much, much more; and she’s rehashed in dozens of books and reincarnated as Madonna.” It is simply called “the Marilyn industry.”

She died in her sleep from drug overdose. She’s immortal. Marilyn Monroe would have been 91. 

Here are some highlights from the World of Marilyn:

HER physical proportions (37-23-37) have become a vital statistic but had faced serious weight problem.

MARILYN received $50 in 1949 to pose nude for a calendar; the photographer sold it for $450; the company cleared around $750,000 on the deal.

ONE of Marilyn’s first modelling jobs was shooting a Valentine’s Day ad for a chocolate factory.

MARILYN was used as the model for Walt Disney’s animated character Tinker Bell.

<< Frank Morris; Marilyn Mania, The Australian Magazine; Hopwood, The Australian, Women’s Weekly.

Picture: Can I have your autograph, please. Marilyn Monroe at the premiere of How to Marry a Millionaire signs her moniker for a bunch of followers. The line goes back about several yards.


HOLD THERE! CAPTURE OF CAPTAIN THUNDERBOLT AT URALLA, NSW, BY CONSTABLE WALKER. THUNDERBOLT RESISTED AND WALKER FIRED THE DEADLY SHOT.

BUSHRANGING:  PART 3. WHERE THUNDERBOLT MET HIS DEATH

FRANK MORRIS

Tucked away between Sydney and Brisbane is Uralla, which is popularly known as Thunderbolt Country.

The only reason why is it referred to in this context in because the bushranger Fred Ward’s – Thunderbolt -- territory covered the entire New England region, even further afield. Armidale, 23km south-east, is his final resting place.

Ward’s grave is in the old Uralla Cemetery; and an impressive granite boulder, known as Thunderbolt’s Rock, a memorial to him, stands alongside the New England Highway. There’s also a plaque near the Uralla Council Chambers which commemorates Thunderbolt’s fatal encounter with one Constable Walker in May, 1870.

Uralla has other attractions to interest visitors.

THUNDERBOLT ESCAPED

There are more than 50 buildings in the district either registered or classified by the National Trust. There’s Rockhunters’ Rendezvous, a collection of the rich variety of precious gemstones and minerals found in the New England territory. And not forgetting Dangar’s Lookout, a natural haven for the multitude of birdlife.

The Diary, a daily feature that was on the back page of The Sydney Morning Herald,* says that the director of the local museum “may have the answer”. The original statement was that Thunderbolt escaped from Cockatoo Island and swan from the north side island with the help of his de facto wife Mary Ann Bugg.

Some recent Diary research had this say: it’s probable that a found key “may be the one that locked Thunderbolt away” says the director.

The director told the Armidale Express, “I went back to Cockatoo to have a closer look. One clearly saw the rusty vestiges of the iron grille door.” The cells were built in 1840 and buried in 1890. The cells were “totally forgotten” for nearly 120 years.

<< Part of this story was in Airlines Magazine; the rest of the story came in 2000. *The Sydney Morning Herald changed shape and was published as a tabloid in 2012.

Coming next September: The Johnny Gilbert story. Frank Morris provides a mystery story that you won’t believe.

Picture: Last Chance. Captain Thunderbolt, Fred Ward, gunned down by a police officer.


THE ORIGINAL! THIS IS THE ORIGINAL PISTOL THAT WAS  USED TO KILL CAPTAIN THUNDERBOLT. IT IS ON DISPLAY AT McCROSSINS MILL, URALLA, NSW.

BUSHRANGING: THE GUN THAT KILLED THUNDERBOLT

FRANK MORRIS

HANDS UP! The revolver used to kill Captain Thunderbolt has been acquired by the “tiny” museum at McCrossin’s Mill, at Uralla in northern inland NSW, reported a Fairfax newspaper.

The paper said that the pistol, an English-made Webley, was donated by the great-great grandchildren of John Gordon, who was given the gun a few days after Constable Alexander Binney Walker shot Thunderbolt near Uralla in 1870.

The real name for Thunderbolt was Frederick Wordsworth Ward. Thunderbolt famously escaped imprisonment on Cockatoo Island in 1863.


AN INTERVIEW: “PLAYING CHURCHILL HAS BEEN MY BIGGEST CHALLENGE. AND I’VE DONE IT!”, ROBERT HARDY.

1984 M0VIE: WINSTON CHURCHILL – PURSUE ANYTHING THROUGH TO THE END!

FRANK MORRIS

Robert Hardy was destined to play Winston Churchill. It was matter of time, really. But Hardy had a long career ahead of him.

In the 1978 TV series, the peppery Hardy geared up to play Siegfried Farnon, a country vet, in All Creatures Great and Small. It was my first real glimpse him as an actor. I was overly impressed.

Hardy played the versatile and flamboyant vet, especially among the rough-hewn farmers and their assorted animals, with consummate ease. He played that role until the end of the series in 1990.

Hardy played in all types of films dealing with well-known people and characters. Some he was brilliant, others he was strikingly good. In 1984, he saddled up to portray Winton Churchill.

WITHOUT IMITATING HIM

HIs point of portrayal was sound in every way.

Winton Churchill was considered by many to be one of Britain’s greatest prime ministers. He covered the war years throughout the 40s. He was an ideal war time leader. Churchill -- In the Wilderness Years -- was the story of his loss of office in 1929 to his triumphant return to power on the eve of World War 11. He resigned in 1945.

In 1951, after the war years gone, Churchill again became Prime Minister.

One reviewer noted this about Hardy’s portrayal of Churchill: “That Hardy somehow managed to get the feeling of Churchill across without actually imitating him.”

Hardy has died aged 91. He was born in 1925.

Picture: A great pair: Peter Davidson as Tristan and Robert Hardy as Siegfried in All Creatures Great and Good. Hardy played a versatile and flamboyant vet with consummate ease.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 18 August 17

SPECIAL FEATURE: PART 1. Between the gravestones – 20 years of original thinking

A CROSS TO BEAR: THE WROUGHT IRON CROSS AT OCTAVIUS BEAL’S GRAVE AT ST THOMAS’ ANGLICAN CEMETERY, ENFIELD

Cemeteries offer huge scope for learning more about our ancestors. Dr Lisa Murray, author of a new book which will help you discover more about the work of a taphophile.

SARAH TREVOR

What initially drew you to colonial cemeteries?

I have been fascinated by cemeteries for more than 20 years. Originally, I was curious about early headstone designs and the history of monumental masonry and sepulchral art in Australia. But my interest quickly expanded to the history of cemeteries and their landscape designs.

Your book, Sydney Cemeteries: A Field Guide, contains a wealth of information for those of us obsessed with cemeteries. Could you tell us a bit about the process involved in researching and writing the guide?

I had to be extremely organised. I visited every cemetery – all 101 of them – that are included in the book; and a few more besides! I had a spreadsheet to keep track of everything. Every weekend my partner and I visited a different district, so each week prior to a district tour -- I researched the cemeteries, taking notes from headstone transcriptions and histories, and plotted a route. Then on site at every cemetery I recorded audio notes of my impressions of the cemetery; and my partner took photographs. When I returned home, these would all be downloaded and further notes made for things to follow up, particularly related to eye-catching memorials and prominent individuals. I wrote the book entries morning and night, before and after my office job. So, basically, I lived and breathed cemeteries for about 12 months.

What were some of the challenges that you encountered when putting together the book?

Three things come to mind: distance (Sydney is a big, sprawling city), figuring out the earliest burials, and flat camera batteries. I thought snakes might be a problem, but we only encountered one.

Which resources did you find the most helpful in the course of your research?

The National Trust of NSW’s masterlist of burial grounds was my starting point (nationaltrust.org.au/services/cemetery-conservation/cemetery-masterlist). I could not have done this book without all the cemetery headstone transcriptions compiled by so many family history groups and historical societies. I created a Trove list of Sydney cemetery publications to make it easier for everyone to track down these great resources (http://trove.nla.gov.au/list?id=64285). I loved going to the Society of Australian Genealogists (sag.org.au) and looking at all their cemetery records. And it hardly needs to be said, but the digitised newspapers on Trove fleshed out many stories. The online Australian Dictionary of Biography (adb.anu.edu.au) was also crucial for identifying where prominent people were buried.

What are some of the insights that a family historian can uncover by visiting their ancestor’s gravesite?

Family connections and memories coalesce in headstones, relationships may become clearer -- or more puzzling. You may even find someone you’ve never heard of listed within an inscription or epitaph. These might record an occupation, or even the personality or virtues of your ancestor. Or an unmarked gravesite might be a clue about family circumstances – economic or otherwise.

Have you ever visited one of your own ancestors’ burial sites?

I visited my great grandfather’s grave when I surveyed Macquarie Park Cemetery (also known as Northern Suburbs General Cemetery) for the book. It took a little while to confirm his location as the cemetery administrators had mistyped his name when they converted the burial registers to a database.

Next month: There’s more to this great grandfather’s grave than the author wants to believe – his name, his marriage and his “personal” material welfare?

<< inside history magazine, Summer 2017. << Sydney Cemeteries: A Field Guide by Dr Lisa Murray (NewSouth Books, $34.99) is out now.

Pictures: At prayer: An angel dominated this grave in a section of South Head General Cemetery. For us all. The Sparke family vault at Rookwood.


SPECIAL FEATURE: CEMETERIES COME AND GO!

FRANK MORRIS

Aside from churchyards, there had been two major cemeteries built in the 1800s in Sydney, NSW. Gazetted in 1819, one of them was Devonshire Street near to Central Railway Station.

Rookwood came in 1865 and Woronora in 1895. Helen Willows, 19, was the first person buried at Woronora in April 1, 1895.

More than 90,000 people have been buried there and 137,000 have been cremated.  In St Peters, NSW, down the road from Central, is a graveyard which is 175 years old.

It celebrated the event on April 5. John Benfield, a solider, was the first person buried there in March 1839. There have been 2515 interred at the site, the last one in 1896.

Picture: Monuments. These giant-sized statuette had a deep meaning for the person/s buried there.


NEXT WEEK: Sherlock Holmes and Friends – meet the Holmes’ Group. Two instalments next week. The rest of the series will run until November. Next September: Outstanding personally, Betty Cuthbert, whose eulogy is featured today, won the 100 metres at Melbourne in l956. She was possibly less excited the fact than most her admires, said a close colleague.


GLORIOUS SUMMER: THE SUMMERS WERE SURPASSINGLY LOVELY. A COOL BREEZE THAT SWEPT OVER THE SURGE UPON THE BROAD BEACHES WHERE TWO STOCKMEN WERE HEADING.

ROLF BOLDREWOOD DAYS: PART 2. LIFE AT YAMBUK – HOME SWEET HOME

The solid turf would disappear … you could end up with a strained joint and broken collarbone.

THOMAS ALEXANDER BROWNE*

And how pleasant, again, in contrast, when the cattle were yarded and the rails securely pegged, to unsaddle and walk into the house.

(Inside), where lights and glowing fires and a well-appointed table awaited us, presided over by a Chatelaine [lady of the house], whose soft voice and ever-varied converse – mirthful or mournful, serious or satirical, practical or poetic – never failed to soothe and interest.

Stock riding in those days, half real business and half sport, as we youngsters held to be, was certainly not one of those games, as Lindsay Gordon sings – “No harm could possibly find its way.”

Part of the Yambuk run was distinctly dangerous riding. Where the wombats dig their treacherous shafts and galleries, how many a good steed and horseman have I seen overthrown.

WHEN OUR NAGS ROLLED US

These peculiar night-feeding animals, akin to the badger of the old country, burrowed much among the coast hummocks. Their open shafts, though not particularly nice to ride among at speed, were trifling drawbacks compared to the horizontal “drives” into which your horse’s feet often broke.

The solid turf would disappear, and, with your horse in a concealed pitfall up to the shoulder, gave a shock that often told tales in a strained joint or a broken collarbone.

We fell lightly in those days, however, and, even when our nags rolled over us, rarely seemed to mind the trifling circumstance.

<< From Life at Yambuk; Australian Pathways, Spring 1998, volume 1 no. 1. *He changed his name to Rolf Boldrewood to write his bushranging novel, Robbery Under Arms.

Next month: A night ride – Ah, well do I remember, that loved and lonely hour – and demise.

Pictures: Odd pair. One bullock is captured by a stockman, and another animal escaped.

NANA: MY GRANDMOTHER WAS A DIFFERENT PERSON, ONE WHO COULDN’T BE DEFEATED. OR, IN A WAY. DISAPPOINTED. I SAW HER FREE OF AMBITION. FREE TO ENJOY, AS SHE LIKED TO PUT IT. BUT SHE GETS ANXIOUS, MIGHTY ANXIOUS WHEN THINGS GO WRONG.

THIS ABOUT IT! PART 2. GRANDMOTHER’S WITH LOVE

FRANK MORRIS

In no time, I began to get taller like a string bean. I was lying in my cot at my grandmother’s. It was 11.30am. It was a Saturday. Dad was sitting on the couch, reading. Experience warned me, however, that it was the Sportsman. My father was a gambler. Not a serious one but nevertheless, he was a “steady” one, if there’s such a word.

He never, for instance, gambled the house we had at Bexley. Or, anything important. Cards were much the same deal. I seems to recall an IOU he signed just moments before beating this fellow at cards. My father won the hand and he paid the IOU back.

My dad came across to me and put his giant hands around me. It was an affectionate hug. It lasted for several minutes. Other occasions, when he grabbed my hands his giant hands made 10 of mine.

SHE’S GONE TO HEAVEN

Where’s my mum, I begged. He dropped his hands down at his side and said, “Mum won’t be back, she gone to Heaven.” My mum was in bed, then she left her home. There we’re people hanging around. That’s all I remember. It worried me a great deal. And dad walked out the room. He went out to the Stanley wireless and switched in on.

Race afternoon had started when the afternoon presenter said, “Good day ladies and gentlemen …” Dad told me that was it is Ian Hay on 2KY.

I never realised this before, but dad was crying. He lived at grandmother’s the same as me. I’ll never forget those days. I could hear the front door open. Nana had been over to the neighbour opposite. Dad came to see my problem and his giant hands came to recue me from boredom.

Dad was smiling. He must have had a win at the races. He carried me to meet nana. Her outstretched arms were there to cuddle me. Nearly four, I was in another world. I hug her very closely. She bent down and whispered in my ear. I couldn’t hear it, but everything was fine. I hug her. Hug her. Minutes went by. Then Nana put me down.

It was some time later, when through my nana’s daughter, that I got the true story. My mother didn’t leave home but had died through a serious heart problem. They said that I was the apple of my mum’s eyes. I spent the next 20 years finding out why my mother died.

Coming: I was 5 years old and sick as a dog with flu.

Picture: Good old nana. She would hug me two or three times and kiss me on the forehead.


SIX GOLD MEDALS: BOBBY MORROW AND BETTY CUTHBERT, BOTH TRIPLE GOLD MEDALISTS, CONGRATULATE EACH OTHER ON THEIR VICTORIES IN MELBOURNE IN 1956.

VALE: THE ‘GOLDEN GIRL’ BETTY CUTHBERT PASSED AWAY

FRANK MORRIS

She was the ‘Golden Girl’ “who ran for her faith”, was how one newspaper described Betty Cuthbert’s zeal.

Cuthbert, who won four Olympic Golds and piles of other tracks records, died last Monday. She was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1969.

She dominated the women’s sprinting events at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games; she was the Australian ‘Golden Girl” of athletics. Cuthbert created records in the 100 metres (11.4) and 200 metres (23.4), and was a member of the victorious 4x100 metres relay team which broke the world record.

At Rome in the 1960 Olympics, Cuthbert represented in the 100, 200 and 400 metres. In Tokyo in 1964, she showed remarkable resoluteness and courage to win the gruelling 400 metres in the record time of 52 seconds. At Tokyo, Cuthbert established herself as an all-time great in athletics.

BROKE NUMEROUS RECORD

Cuthbert won two Silver medals at 1958 Cardiff Commonwealth Games. She a collected Gold medal for the 4x100 yard relay at Perth Commonwealth Games in 1962.

She broke world records on numerous occasions over 60 metres, 100 yards, 200 metres, 400 metres and 440 yards. In 1956, she was recipient of the Helms Award. She awarded the MBE for services to sport in 1965. Cuthbert became the first woman to be appointed to the Sydney Cricket Ground Trust in 1978.

Betty Cuthbert was a legend. She was one of the best Australians to ever compete. She inspires athletes everywhere to wear the national uniform.

<< The Hall of Champions, Sports House, Sydney.-

Picture: On your mark. The running style of Betty Cuthbert.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 11 August 17

FLASHBACK 1945: The Atomic Plague – Hiroshima was hit and became a nightmare world!

WAS HE OR WASN’T HE: WAS PRESIDENT TRUMAN CORRECT WHEN HE DECIDED TO DROP AN ATOMIC BOMB ON HIROSHIMA AND LATER NAGASAKI?

It’s 72 years since Australian journalist Wilfred Burchett travelled to Japan to cover the “aftermath” of America exploding the Atomic bomb over Hiroshima. Of Burchett’s endeavour, an Australian journalist reported that “Over 90,000 people died … but no western scribe had witnessed the aftermath experience.” Burchett emerged from the train and stepped into a nightmare world. He sat down on some rocks with his baby Hermes typewriter and began his paragraph. Burchett’s story was published on September 5, 1945, in the Daily Express, London, and would become a worldwide sensation. This is what he wrote. – FM.

WILFRED BURCHETT

In Hiroshima, 30 days after the first atomic bomb destroyed the city and shook the world, people are still dying, mysteriously and horribly – people who were uninjured in the cataclysm – from an unknown something which I can only describe as the atomic plague.

Hiroshima does not look like a bombed city.  It looks as if a monster steamroller has passed over and squashed it out of existence.  I write these facts as dispassionately as I can in the hope that they will act as a warning to the world.

In this first testing ground of the atomic bomb I have seen the most terrible and frightening desolation in four years of war.

It makes a blitzed Pacific island seem like Eden.  The damage is far greater than photographs can show.

When you arrive in Hiroshima you can look around for 25 and perhaps 30 square miles (64.7-77.7 sq km) and can hardly see a building.  It gives you an empty feeling in the stomach to see such man-made destruction.

DOZENS OF GUTTED BUILDINGS

I picked my way to a shack used as a temporary police headquarters in the middle of the vanished city.  Looking south from there I could see about three miles (4.8 km) of reddish rubble.

That is all the atomic bomb left of dozens of blocks of city streets, of buildings, homes, factories and human beings.
There is nothing standing except about 20 factory chimneys- chimneys with no factories. A group of half-a-dozen gutted buildings. Then again nothing.

The police chief in Hiroshima welcomed me eagerly as the first Allied correspondent to reach the city.  With the local manager of Domei, the leading Japanese newsagency, he drove me through, or perhaps I should say over, the city. And he took me to hospitals where the victims of the bomb are still being treated.

In these hospitals I found people who when the bomb fell suffered absolutely no injuries, but now are dying from the uncanny after-effects.  For no apparent reason their health began to fail.

They lost appetite.  Their hair fell out.  Bluish spots appeared on their bodies.

And then bleeding began from the ears, nose and mouth.

At first, the doctors told me, they thought these were the symptoms of general debility.  They gave their patients Vitamin A injections.

The results were horrible. The flesh started rotting away from the hole caused by the injection of the needle.
In every case the victim died.

In writing this story, I had “scooped” the Occupation press corps, a group of hand-picked American journalists flown directly from Washington who had been assured that they would be the first foreign journalists to enter Hiroshima.

A BOMB USED AGAINST HIROSHIMA

The most prestigious member of the United States journalist delegation was William L. Laurence. At the time of his Hiroshima visit, he was wearing two hats: one for the New York Times, the other as a member of the inner circle of the government’s nuclear weapons directorate.

He alone had access to the Manhattan Project’s supersecret plants and laboratories, and had been the sole journalist to observe the Alamogordo test of the prototype A-used against Hiroshima.

It had not been anticipated that a maverick reporter would have found the means to arrive at the dead city ahead of the (“official”) party.

Under these circumstances, it is no wonder that Lawrence in the New York Times and myself in the London Daily express wrote diametrically different reports.

I reported what I had seen and heard, while Lawrence sent back a prefabricated report reflecting the “official line”.

<< For a complete coverage read Shadows of Hiroshima by Wilfred Burchett, Verso Press, 1983.

Pictures: 72 years ago. On August 6, 1945, the world enters the Atomic Age when a single nuclear bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, killing 90,000 people and injuring thousands of others. Little Boy: World War II atomic bomb which was detonated over Hiroshima.


MAN’S GREAT LEAP: NEIL ARMSTRONG’S GHOSTLY FIGURE EMERGED FROM THE SPACECRAFT, HIS LEFT FOOT HOVERED ABOVE THE MOON SURFACE AS HE SPOKE THE WORDS FROM A WORLD AFAR. PICTURE FROM NASA.

FLASHBACK 1969: IT’S 52 YEARS SINCE MAN’S GREAT LEAP

FRANK MORRIS

On July 21, 1969, at 12.56 pm, American astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first man to put his footprint on the moon.

That’s 52 years ago. Time waits for no man.

GREAT LEAP

Watched by more than 600 million people around the world, Armstrong’s ghostly figure emerged from the spacecraft.

Armstrong’s first words as he gingerly slithered his feet across the moon’s surface were: “That’s one step for man but a giant leap for mankind.”

Twenty minutes later he was joined by his space companion Buzz Aldrin.


FLASHBACK 1969: NEW ALBUM INSPIRED BY ARMSTRONG’S WALK ON THE MOON

FRANK MORRIS

Reg Lindsay has released a new album, which is bound to find its way into every record collection.

Lindsay’s My Life in Country Music contains most of his hits, including Armstrong, which was inspired by astronaut Neil Armstrong’s moonwalk in July, 1969.

Lindsay told me a few years ago he was “not afraid” to take a punt on a song. “I’ve never been afraid to experiment,” he said. “If an idea is worth a gamble, it may come off.”

BIGGEST RECORD

He took a gamble with Armstrong he said. “Armstrong was one of those times when I allowed myself to be talked into a particular song and style. I wasn’t convinced that I could do justice to the song, but it turned out to be one of the biggest-selling records I ever had.”

Over the past three decades, Lindsay has turned out more than 300 albums and, at the last count, some 200 singles.

(Reg Lindsay died on August 5, 2008. He was 79.)
<< This story plus other material dealing with the space program was syndicated.

<< Frank Morris’ Showline column, 1985(?).

Pictures: Armstrong. Lindsay was inspired by his moon walk.


THE WIFE OF REV JOHN FLYNN: MRS FLYNN, MARRIED TO AN OUTBACK HERO, SAID “INLANDERS ARE CHEERFUL SOULS; THEY NEVER COMPLAIN.”

FLASHBACK 1939: MRS FLYNN OF THE INLAND KNOWS THE OUTBACK LIKE THE BACK OF HER HAND

Wife of outback hero tells of life in the interior.

ADAPTED BY FRANK MORRIS

The Rev. John Flynn inaugurated the first Flying Doctor in Australia, with a base at Cloncurry, Queensland, in 1928. It was called the Inland Aerial Medical Service.

Flynn also installed the first wireless base there, and distributed the first few pedal wireless sets that made it possible for isolated settlers to call the doctor in times of emergency.

Today, Cloncurry is only one of six Flying Doctor bases scattered widely over the outback of Australia. Talking of the work in the interior on Australia, Mrs Flynn said, “The settlers in the inland must be prepared to endure years of isolation.”

She added: “I remember going with the wireless officer to install a pedal set on a station 80 (40km) miles south-east of Croydon in the Gulf Country. The woman of the house and the governess had not seen another white woman for two years.

“At another station in the Gulf Country we were welcomed by a charming girl who had been to school in Sydney. She was the only white woman for 60 (30 km) miles. Soon after this girl came north to look after her father and brother; her brother had taken ill.

Inlander meets the dreaded perils

“The father had to set out by car to take him to the doctor at Camooweal, 200 (100km) miles distant. When he reached Camooweal the doctor was away, so he had to go 150 miles further on to Mt Isa. There the boy was operated on for appendicitis.

“But his father could barely wait to see him out of the anaesthetic before making a rush for home.

“The rains were due. They begin in December in that country and go till March. Once they started he would never reach home. And his daughter, fresh from the city, would be left alone with the natives for three months.

“He got as far as the last river before the floods began. He had to leave the car there, swim the river and walk the last 8 (16km) miles home. There was no way of getting news of his son.

“So after six weeks of anxiety, he saddled up a horse and set out to cover the 90 (45km) miles to the nearest telegraph station at Burketown, only to find that the telegraph had been down for five weeks and could not be fixed till the rains ceased.

“As it happens the boy was all right.

“The Inlanders are cheerful souls. They never complained.

<< Adapted from Mrs Flynn of the Inland; Australian Women’s Weekly, October 21. 1939.

In December: Some more words of wisdom about outback Australia by Mrs Flynn, wife of the man who started the Inland Aerial Medical Service – which became the Royal Flying Doctor Service – the Rev. John Flynn, in 1928.

Frank Morris writes: In 1939, the famous Rev. John Flynn, was newly appointed Moderator-General of the Presbyterian Church. The Australian Inland Mission owes “its inception to him … and the plan for its formation being adopted by the Presbyterian General Assembly.”

Pictures: Wanting a shave. In 1938, John and Mrs Flynn are busy at the campsite at Gilbert River. Iconic. Rev John Flynn in 1938 after he has been elected Moderator-General of the Presbyterian Church of Australia.


WHO’S COUNTING: COUNT TO TEN AND YOU BECOME A TENOR!

SMALL SCREEN SUCCESS: 1988 -- THE SECRET OF WICKETY WAK’S GOOD FORTUNE!

What is the secret of Wickety Wak’s success?

For the past 12 months, the MO award-winning Queensland show-group has played to more than 2 million people all over Australia – and they keep coming back for more.

“The secret of WW’s consistent success lies in their witty and impeccable stage presentation,” says the group’s manager, Paul Ewart. “Their whole aim is to keep people of all ages total entertained. And they do it with crazy send-ups, musical tributes and a host of knockout celebrity impersonations.”

WON PRESTIGE AWARD

The group has just completed a television special for the Seven Network, which was shot over 3 months on locations around Australia. The new program, Called Wak About Australia, features Australian music ranging from Waltzing Matilda to Air Supply’s Lost in Love.

And this group is just putting the finishing touches to another TV special, Wickety Wak Live at the Gold Coast, which looks set to be a “top-rater” for Channel Seven.

“It’s WW’s most ambitious project yet,” said Ewart.

So far the group has made seven television specials, one of which, Waks Works, has won the prestigious Penguin Award in 1984. – FRANK MORRIS.

<< Appeared in Frank Morris’ Showline column which went to various newspapers.                                                                                                                                                

Picture: Timeframe. Wickety Wak … still going.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 04 August 17

THE GREAT WAR: Part 1. Service in North Russia -- two Aussies win the Victoria Cross

TROOPS IN FLIGHT: A REMARKABLE PHOTOGRAPH WHICH SHOWS A SCENE OF THE REVOLT OF RUSSIAN TROOPS AT THE EASTERN FRONT.

Recently, I found a copy of Anzacs in Arkhangel by Mark Challinger in my bookshelves. In the book the author notes, “This book is about a strange and little-known chapter of Australia’s military history” about Australians who went to fight Bolsheviks in North Russia as members of the North Russia Relief Force. This is their story. – MB.

MAX BALL

Adapted BY Frank Morris

In early 1918, after Russia withdrew from World War 1, the UK Government decided to despatch a military mission of about 560 persons to North Russia to instruct and lead Russians (Whites), who were loyal to the Provisional Government, and opposed the Bolsheviks (Reds).

(The object was) to secure military stores at Murmansk and, perhaps, re-establish an Eastern Front.

Designated “Elope Force” it included 21 Canadians, four New Zealanders (of whom two were born in Australia), and nine Australians. All were volunteers. A second force, code name “Syren”, of 600 British troops, was sent to Murmansk.

Twelve months later, matters had not gone well. The Bolsheviks (Reds) were prevailing over the White Russians and reinforcements were needed to support Elope in Arkhangel. Indeed, the British Government was concerned that its troops may need to be rescued.

PROVE THEIR METTLE

In April, 1919, recruiting posters were displayed in London calling for volunteers from trained soldiers, who were fit and over the age of 19, for the North Russian Relief Force. The volunteers would be enlisted in the British Army; if not still be serving British soldiers.

At the time, some 70,000 AIF volunteers were in Britain waiting for transport home. Some had enlisted in the AIF in 1918 and had not seen action in France; and wished to prove their mettle.

Some may have been attracted by the generous pay offered by the British Government; and some, after the adrenalin rush of being in action, may have been bored.

For whatever reasons, up to about 150 Australians volunteered to serve in the Relief Force. To do so, they had to request their discharge from the AIF and enlist in the British Army.

Samuel George Pearse was born in Penarth, Wales, and enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne in July, l915, aged 18. Assigned to the 1st Machine Gun Bn, 2870, Private Pearse was awarded the Military Medal in France.

PEARSE CHARGED THE ENEMY

Private Pearse, now 133032 of the British Army, was assigned to the 45th Bn Royal Fusiliers, distinguished himself on operations south of Arkhangel.

On August 29, 1919, Sergeant Pearse’s unit was assaulting an enemy battery when, under heavy fire, he cut his way through barbed wire and charged an enemy blockhouse single-handed, killing all the occupants with bombs; but he met his death minutes later.

The citation records that “it was due to him that the position was carried with so few casualties. His magnificent bravery and utter disregard for personal safety won for him the admiration of all troops.”

Next: The Great War -- Arthur Percy Sullivan, of Crystal Brook, South Australia, arrived in Britain in September 1918. Sullivan commenced artillery training and, because the war was over, never sent to France.

<< Service in North Russia wins two Aussies the Victoria Cross; Max Ball. Camaraderie magazine, Second Edition, 2016.

Pictures: One of two winners: A bunch of Canadian Troops being inspected by their General. Hooray! A band of Aussie machine gunners hear the fighting is over. 


COMING NEXT YEAR: A new series of the Australian Chronicle covering the growth of this country’s second 100 years. The series will be called Building a Nation.


MONTAGE: FRANK MCNAMARA SPOTTED A COLLEAGUE, CAPTAIN DAVID RUTHERFORD (CENTRE) WHO HAD CRASH LANDED IN THE DESERT. MCNAMARA WON THE VC FOR HIS REACTION AND BRAVERY.

FLASHBACK: THE GREAT WAR – AUSTRALIAN FYING CORPS HAS A REMARKABLE GROWTH

VC was won by Captain Frank McNamara, who landed in the desert under heavy Turkish fire, to rescue a fellow pilot.

Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

Australia’s air-force goes back to when it was called the Central Flying School, which was established at Point Cook, Victoria, in 1914. Since those days, most people have an interest in what appeared to be a “mechanical aberration” of minor interest: flying.

The School, therefore, started on a somewhat small scale. It consisted of a six-man team, two pilot instructors – Lieutenant E. Harrison and Lieutenant A. A. Petre – a cook and caretaker, and three tiny planes, two Deperdussins and a Bristol Boxkite.

Although World War 1 was to see a remarkable growth in aerial power, the School was the only permanent air base structure in the Commonwealth until 1921. It was transferred to East Sale, Victoria, in 1948. The School was maintained as the original unit of the Royal Australian Air Force.

The first trainees at the School were army officers, who began studies on August 17, 1914.

Three of the officers, Lieutenant Richard Williams, T.W. White and G.P. Merz, had happy and unhappy distinctions. Williams, who was later knighted, was the first Australian officer to earn air rank and became Director-General of Civil Aviation in 1946.
White was also knighted and became Minister for Air and Civil Aviation in 1949.

THE ONLY MAN SENT

Merz, on the other hand, had the mishap of being the first Australian pilot to be killed in action, in Mesopotamia on July 30, 1915.

Lieutenant Harrison was the initial pilot to be sent abroad by the School’s foundation instructors; Rafael to join up with the naval military expeditionary force, which captured New Britain from the Germans, in the latter part of 1914.

Australia was the only Dominion to create its own air-force during the war. This way, flying personnel from other Dominions enlisted to join in the Royal Flying Corps.

In 1915, the first of four squadrons that went to Mesopotamia and France had a notable record. They destroyed 276 enemy planes at the cost of 60 Australian aircraft.

HOW TO SWING PROPELLERS

Squadron No 4 went to Germany in December 1918. It was the only Australian unit of any kind to take part in the Allied occupation.

The first Squadron saw more action than any other RAAF Squadron. The 28 officers and 195 men of No. 1 Squadron, Australian Flying Corps, left Melbourne on March 16, for Suez.

When they departed, they had no planes with them – only two cars and seven motor cycles. The pilots use borrowed aircraft and the job the ground staff had learned meticulously was how to swing propellers.

Captain Frank McNamara was the only Australian airman in World War 1 to win 50 decorations and the VC, the Victorian Cross.  McNamara, though badly wounded, landed in the desert under heavy Turkish fire to rescue a fellow pilot.

When the four AFC Squadrons returned to Australia in June 1919, they were disbanded. But in 1921, Australia became the first Dominion to create its own air force independent of army or naval control. The Australian Flying Corps became the Royal Australian Air Force.

<< From Historical Firsts produce by Tucker & Co Pty limited; 1960s.

Pictures: Promotion. Air Vice Marshal Frank McNamara (right) photographed with the boys. One and only. Lt. Frank McNamara, the first Australian aviator to win the Victoria Cross.


THE GREAT WAR: “OUR LAST MAN AND OUR LAST SHILLING.” PRIME MINISTER ANDREW FISHER (CENTRE( PLEDGED TO THE PRIME MINISTER OF ENGLAND.

FLASHBACK: THE GREAT WAR – THE AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTERS WHO LED US INTO BATTLE!

Prime Ministers are elected by the party and, as chief minister, they are the leaders of our country.

Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

Joseph Cook hailed from England and he migrated to Australia in 1860. Cook entered federal politics as a member for Parramatta in 1901. He became leader of the Free Traders in 1905 and, as soon as Reid resigned, he took over.

Cook, age 52, spent his political life changing between different parties. But before changing his political life from party to party, Cook went to work in the Lithgow mines until 1891. He left when he was elected to the NSW parliament as a Labor member.

There was plenty of guile spread among the opposition of Labor. He was noted as a man who had worked hard, and had profited. Others saw him as a gentleman who, politically speaking, had seen the light.

AUSSIE NAVY SAILED INTO SYDNEY

As prime minister he was leader of the Liberal Party but he struggled to pass many of his initiatives due to a lack of a majority.

Cook tried to improve the situation by seeking and obtaining the first double dissolution; but his government was defeated by Labor.  The ALP, again led by Andrew Fisher, was “immediately  consumed” by World War 1.

During Cook’s term Australia’s new naval fleet sailed into Sydney Harbour on October 4, 1913.

“Since Captain Cook’s arrival, no more memorable event had happened than the advent of the Australian Fleet,” said Prime Minister, Joseph Cook.

Cook was Prime Minister for 12 months. He was elected on June 24, l913. He was born in 1860 and died in 1947.

ANDREW FISHER – DECIDED TO STAND BEHIND BRITAIN UNTIL “OUR LAST SHILLING”

In his final term as prime minister, Andrew Fisher was faced with leading the country into the start of World War 1. Under his government, Australian troops fought in Gallipoli, the Middle East and Europe.

Fisher made a well-known pledge: That Australia would stand beside Britain, the mother country to the end.
“To help and defend her to our last man and our last shilling,” said the prime minister.

That’s why Australia went to war.

‘FRICTION’ WITHIN CABINET BUILT UP

In the election on September 17, 1914, Labor was returned to power and Fisher was prime minister for the third time. The Great War, by this time, had started; and it dominated federal politics until early 1919.

Fisher serves as prime minister until October 27, 1915. Author Ronald W. Laidlaw said “friction within his cabinet had built up” and the time for him was to “prove difficult.”

Standing in the wings was William Morris Hughes, one of “most colourful and controversial Labor politicians” in Australian history.

Fisher was born in 1868 and died in 1928.

WILLIAM MORRIS HUGHES – THOSE CONSCRIPTION ISSUES

Just about everyone called him “Billy” Hughes. Hughes time in power lasted over 7 years; and with 58 years of his life spent in Australian politics, he hold the record for being the “longest-serving parliamentarian ever”.

During the war he became known as “the Little Digger”. Hughes belonged to fives parties and he was expelled from three. He is remembered for being the most clever and controversial member of his day.

In 1916, Hughes paid a visit to England to discuss the progress of the war. He met Herbert Henry Asquith, the British prime minister, and other members of the cabinet. He complained about the way Australian troops had been used at Gallipoli and went on to make a number of requests.

He attended the “special” Economic Conference in Paris where he argued passionately for “an aggressive post-war commercial policy.”

Hughes got back to Australia on July, 1916. He launched the introduction to conscription in a bid to make up troop numbers.

ANOTHER WHITE WASH

By doing so, he divided his own party and the bulk of the Australian people. Even many politicians – including the Labor premier, Arthur Holman, most newspapers, capitalists, patriots and conservatives.

But Hughes managed to oppose Daniel Mannix (who became Roman Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne in 1917) and anti-conscriptionits, farmers and many others.

Speeches were made, meetings held, posters displayed and letters written to newspapers.

On October 28, 1916, was the referendum. It was a landslide for ‘No’. The voting was 1,087,557 for ‘Yes’ and 1,160,033 voted against.

In 1917, Hughes and his government asked the people to vote a second time on the issue of overseas service. Basically, the people were fed up with the war and defeated the government most soundly.

The referendum went on to reinforce the previous decision. The tally was 1,015,159 for those in favour and 1,181,747 against. It was another whitewash.

Four and half years later, November 11, 1918, World War l ended. Hughes reign ended in 1923. He was born in 1862 and died in 1952.

<< Australian History; Ronald W. Laidlaw, 580pp; MacMillian Company Pty Ltd, South Melbourne, Victoria; 1980.

Pictures: Welcome. Prime Minister Joseph Cook welcomes the new fleet in Sydney. He said war. Prime Minister Fisher was “immediately consumed” by World War 1. Chose wrongly. Prime Minister Billy Hughes: he was behind the conscription debacle.


COMING IN AUGUST: SHERLOCK HOLMES & FRIENDS: JUST WHEN THE SHERLOCK TELEVIONS SERIES IS THE TALK OF AUSTRALIA, HE WILL SUDDENLY BECOME THE TALK OF GRAND YEARS. SHERLOCK WILL APPEAR IN TWO EPISODES IN AUGUST AND MONTHLY UNTIL NOVEMBER.


NEARLY THE SAME: THE HMS GALATEA CAME TO AUSTRALIAN SHORES MANY TIMES. SHE’S SIMALAR TO PELORUS OF 21 GUNS.

RAN NAVY: PART 2. ROYAL AUSTRALIAN NAVY NAMED … BUT THERE WERE DARK DAYS AHEAD

In June, 1859, the British force on the Australian station consisted Iris (26 guns), the Pelorus (21guns), the Niger (14 guns), the Elk (12 guns) and Cordelia (11 guns).

The Admiralty proposed to increase the force.

It said: “Not only to provide for the defence of the Colony, but in the event of war, to give periodical convoys to treasure ship ships proceeding home, either by the Cape of Good Hope or by Cape Horn.”

The first Admiralty proposal to establish a permanent Australian naval force was made in 1869. The plan was for the colonies to pay half the cost and upkeep, but the idea fell through.

RISE OF GERMANY

In the succeeding decade, several other suggestions were made for the creation of a separate Australian squadron. But without success. `

Each colony proceeded independently – with the exception of Western Australia which had no naval force or whatever – to provide coastal and harbour defences.

Towards the end of 19th century, the lack of a central Government and the financial stringency in Australia, meant the 1887 scheme was slow to take shape. However, the rise of Germany as a naval power early last century gave the some urgency to the development of an Australian station.

The Navy Defence Act of 1910 was passed. In October, 1911, the King authorised the adoption of the title Royal Australian Navy. – Adapted by Frank Morris.

<< Adapted from Historical Firsts, Tucker & co Pty Limited; 1960s.

The First. HMAS Australia was the right ship at the right time.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 28 July 17

FLASHBACK TO 1961: Plastic bag controversy – what will be the outcome?

THE LAST BAG: SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BAGS FROM THE TWO GIANT STORES WILL BE PHASED OUT BY JUNE 30, 2018. OTHER STORES WILL FOLLOW SUIT. FIFTY-SIX YEARS AGO, I WAS INVOLVED IN THE REAL BEGINNINGS OF THE PLACTIC BAG WAR.

The number of lightweight supermarket bags Australia use annually – 4 billion. The number of bags for every man, woman and child – 170. How many supermarket plastic bags are recycled – 3%. The proportion of dead turtles in Moreton Bay, off Brisbane, found with plastic bags in their stomachs – 40%. How many years plastic bags take to break down – 200-l000.

FRANK MORRIS

The plastic bag “controversy” hit Australia hard when it started to become a serious issue in 1961, fifty-six years ago. As editor of Plastics Retailer, I was a shown a thing or two about decreasing one’s tone in my criticism about the whole affair.

At the time the issue was the number of children dying because they used the plastic bag as a toy.

The Plastics Institute of Australia’s Federal Branch sent out a warning to parents, that “to avoid danger of suffocation this bag is not a toy.”

One story I wrote in July 1961, I said, “Grave doubts have already been expressed upon the effectiveness of the Industry’s campaign to prevent further fatalities from the misuse of thin plastic bags.

NIGHTMARE

“It’s been said that the campaign is a sop to public opinion and will produce no lasting public benefit. It will certainly be under close scrutiny; and by a proportion of very unfriendly observers too, who will be quick to point out failure,” I said.

Scant attention was being paid to the environment. The inhabitants of our beaches and rivers were being overlooked.

After 56 years, the plastic bags sequel had simply turned into a nightmare.

Pictures:  The first step. The Plastics Retailer and one of the historic pages.

PLASTIC BAGS, 2O17: BIG STORES TAKE ACTION TO BAN THE BAGS!

Across Australia single-use plastic bags will be phased out in 12 months’ time by the supermarket giants Woolworths and Coles. Single-use, or thin, plastic bags will be “things of the past” the officials announced the dramatic change last Friday.

That means, by June 30 next year plastic bags will be limited.

RIGHT TO THE END

“The move is welcomed by environmental groups,” one Sunday newspaper said.  The groups have long campaigned against plastic bags.

The supermarkets giants, apart from Queensland, will have implemented “state-wide bans” to take place next year. There are plans in place for Queensland to do the same thing.

All through the plastic bag procedure in NSW, the Government remained silent.

PICTURE: No go. After all the continual parry and thrust of media, concerned citizens, environmentalists and assorted groups comes the end of the plastic bag reign in 12 month time.


IT BEEN 200 YEARS since Jane Austen’s death on July 18, 1817. Austen expert, Professor Devoney Looser, flew into Sydney to give a keynote speech at the University of Sydney, which had just discovered an original first edition of Austen’s Mansfield Park published in l814. The book is now in their rare books collection. In letters to one newspaper, it was said that “Jane Austen has brought the enjoyment of reading to millions of people around the world, myself included … The world needs to continue to promote reading books and the masterpieces of this brilliant writer.” In another: “Jane Austen was a brilliant social commentator and observer … Her writing is timeless.” – FM.


INSIDE NEWSPAPERS: INTERNATIONAL EXPRESS, LONDON – WHAT A BREEZE SAID SUPERHERO!

A girl of seven who is a carer for her disabled older brothers has been turned into a superhero character in the Beano comic. Breeze Martin helps her parents look after wheelchair-bound Coast, 9, and Blue, 10, who battle severe autism and need 24-hour care.

In her spare time Breeze loves to read the Beano, which she has adored since buying an old annual at the school fair when she was four.

She wrote to the Beano revealing: “I like looking after my severely disabled brother Coast … I also like drama and roast dinners.”

I’M FAMOUS

Bosses at the comic responded by dedicating at entire page to Breeze. In the cartoon Breeze has the “amazing” ability to “fix things and make people feel better” and helps Beano’s Minnie The Minx mend her catapult.

In real life Breeze is devoted to helping mum Becky, 42, and dad John, 55.

Breeze said: “It’s really fun being in the Beano. My friends think I’m famous.” She was made “Beano Boss” for the issue.

Beano’s editorial director said: “If we do a tiny thing that makes a kid like her happy, it’s top notch for us.” –Adapted by Frank Morris.

<< From International Express, June 29-July 5, 2017.

Picture: Beano fun. Hero Breeze and the comic she starred in for being a carer.


ON THE RUN: FEBRUARY I, 1919, THE 18-FOOT CHAMPIONSHIPS OF AUSTRALIA ON SYDNEY HARBOUR. BOATS FROM MOST STATES SAILED. WINNER WAS MAVIS OF NSW.

FLASHBACK: MARK FOY, FATHER OF THE 18 FOOTERS

(They were our glory days! Sailing has been a popular pastime in Australia since the early days of settlement. These photographs were contributed by Lyne Hirsch who recalls some of the sport’s glory days of the last century. “My grandfather, Henry Carl Press, was involved in the establishment of the Sydney Flying Squadron and sailed 18-footers,” Lyne said. “Our amazing grandfather also built boat at Woolloomooloo, had ferries on Sydney Harbour, as well hire boats at picnic grounds. A boat named in his honour, the HC Press ll, won many big races during the 1920s and ‘30s and was known as “The Phar Lap of the 18-footer world.’”)

Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

Born on the Bendigo goldfields in Victoria on February 2, 1865, Mark Foy came to Sydney in 1884 with his brother Francis, where they began business under the name ‘Mark Foy.'

Regarding Sydney Harbour as the world's finest aquatic playground, he had ample means and sufficient leisure to indulge his hobby – sailing.

To his great disappointment, he learned that sailing attracted practically no public interest – reasoning it was mainly because yachtsmen did not cater for the public.

The major problem was producing a faster boat, but Foy solved this with the first of the 18-footers. It was an open, centreboard boat with a very light hull, an 8 ft beam and only 30 inches amidships.

It carried a crew of 14, at most (compared to the previous boats' 25) and had a huge spread of sail which gave it a sensational aquaplaning speed downwind.

Foy catered for the enthusiast who liked to follow his fancy throughout a race. His first idea of striped sails as identity marks was dropped, due to the prohibitive cost of manufacturing varying designs for registration, and later replaced with the colourful emblems which are still the distinguishing badge of the racing 18-footers.

FOY’S FIGHTING BLOOD

In the eyes of the Anniversary Regatta committee of 1892, the ‘gaudy' emblems constituted heresy toward the traditional numbering, All entries from Sydney Flying Squadron members were rejected on the ground that “such large badges were not in keeping with the dignity of the oldest regatta in the southern hemisphere”.

This got Foy's fighting blood up and he announced, “We'll run our own regatta on Anniversary Day. I'll pay for it and we'll give the public just what it wants”.

A triangular course of about three miles was plotted. From a start at Garden Island, boats would round Pinchgut, run into Mosman Bay and then past Clark Island to the finish.

The course would be sailed, according to official direction, either clockwise or anti-clockwise. The prime purpose was that close handicapping would bunch the field for a spectacular, downwind run along the “straight”.

Clark Island, which offered an excellent view of the whole race, was vital to the success of Foy's plan. By chartering every available ferry for the day of the regatta, he aimed to pack the natural grandstand with paying spectators. Each 1,000 ferry fans would add 50 pounds to profits, which would enable more prizemoney to be given.

Foy whipped enthusiasm to fever pitch. He hired bands to play on Clark Island, at the major ferry terminals, on the ferries and on the specially chartered flagship for the day.

Hire-pressure publicity given to Foy's plans paid a big dividend. On regatta day, Clark Island was packed to capacity. Crowded, moored ferries provided additional accommodation, while every jetty and vantage point from Mosman to Milson's Point and Darling Point to the Rocks was thronged.

The crowd was without precedent in the annals of yacht racing in Australia yet most of the spectators knew little about the sport and less about the official regatta.

The vast majority were there to thrill to the excitement that Foy had promised. By evening they were the forefathers of the 18-footer enthusiasts, participants and spectators of today.

Wisely, Foy allowed the official yacht to steal the initial thunder. Waiting until the competing yachts had disappeared towards the Heads, he cashed in on the public's boredom.

BOW TO BOW FINISH

Prizemoney totalling One hundred and twenty six pounds had attracted Squadron skippers and Foy was able to stage three races over his triangular course with no distraction from the vanished official fleet.

The public got its money's worth. The coloured badges of the 18-footers were an instant success and excitement ran high when the closely packed fields turned downwind for the run home.

At the start there had been less than three minutes between the scratch and the limit boats. Now, a dozen boats raced for the line in a bow-to-bow finish. By nightfall, the success of 18-footer racing on the Foy system was assured.

Foy had demonstrated emphatically that 18-footer racing was the most exciting participant and spectator sport ever seen on Sydney Harbour. Its status has never been seriously challenged since. Sydney Flying Squadron entries were accepted without quibble at the next regatta.

Foy did all in his power to lease or obtain Clark Island as a fixed grandstand to view races with the Squadron's own ferries transporting patrons. This request was refused, sympathetically, as all islands are public parks.

<< Adapted from Mark Foy, Father of the 18-footers.

Picture: Home and away. The H.C Press ll, with double stripes, surges in a race on Sydney Harbour. H.C. Press ll was shown is the Sportsman in August, 1932, with skipper, Chris Webb, who was described as “the famous old man of The Spit. I did it. Mark Foy, organiser of the 18-footers.


COMING! THIS THE FIRST TIME THAT SHERLOCK HOLMES AND FRIENDS WILL BE PUBLISHED.

In one part of the Sherlock narrative, the visualisation of Holmes was still an untidy affair. Conan Doyle sent the first six Holmes stories, published under the collective title of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes in The Strand, and posted them to Alfred Harmsworth, the future Lord Northcliffe, the owner of the journal. Harmsworth wrote back: “I agree with you that the illustrations have to be excellent. Sidney Paget is the name.” The first instalment is published in July. – FM.


 

 THAT’S ALL, FOLKS: TOMMY BURNS WAS WELL BEATEN BY JACK JOHNSON UNTIL THE POLICE STOPPED THE FIGHT IN THE 14TH ROUND.`

THE FIGHT: NOBODY WANTED TO MISS IT – POLICE CALLED IN TO STOP THE BATTLE

FRANK MORRIS, ERIC READE

On December 29, 1908, it was left to Sydney Stadium of all places to screen the sporting classic of the year The Johnson-Burns Fight. This contest had taken place in the ring of the stadium three days earlier, when the police stopped the fight and Johnson was declared the winner on points.

Film pioneer Eric Reade, who wrote about the tussle, said: “Hugh McIntoch, who refereed the fight, was dressed in a white suit to make him more conspicuous in the film” and The Sydney Morning Herald, which described the film ’as the greatest series of pictures since motion photography became a fine art.’”

HIGGINS TO THE FORE

Reade said: “It showed every face in the 20,000 present, the crush outside, the advanced trained tactics of both champions, and every detail of the 14 round battle until police stopped the fight.”

It was this film that brought Ernest Higgins to the fore as one of truly ace cinematographers on the Australian circuit.

Higgins, born in Hobart, became a bioscope operator in his home town in 1903. He and his brothers Arthur and Tasman, were “to raise the standard of Australian photography to equal, often better, the efforts of cameramen overseas.”

<< The Australian Screen; Eric Reade; Lansdowne Press, Melbourne 3000; 1975; Frank Morris.

*More episodes of The Fight coming up.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 20 July 17

ROLF BOLDREWOOD DAYS: PART 1. Life at Yambuk – blue and golden days were waiting!

NOT MADE TO ORDER: PART OF THE YAMBUK RUN WAS DISTINCTLY DANGEROUS RIDING. MANY A GOOD STEED AND HORSEMAN HAVE BITTEN THE DUST.

Thomas Alexander Browne, later to become Rolf Boldrewood, was born in 1826. Browne grew up in Sydney and went on to have a varied career, working, among other things, on stations in the Riverina and the Western District of Victoria, and as a magistrate in Albury. Writing under the pen-name of Rolf Boldrewood, he became well-known for his famous bushranging novel Robbery Under Arms. Browne spent some time on Yambuk, a cattle station on the west coast of Victoria, in the 1840s. – FM.                                 

THOMAS ALEXANDER BROWNE

Once upon time, in a “kingdom by the sea”, known to men as Port Fairy, Yambuk, was a choice and precious example of an old-fashioned cattle station. If one could easily ride up … to that garden gate, receive the old cordial welcome, and turn his horse into the paddock, what a fontaine de jouvence – fountain of youth – it would be?

Touching the groves on the opposite side of the Shaw River, down to a bank of which the garden sloped, were broad limestone flats, upon which rose clumps of the beautiful lightwood or hickory trees, some of Australia’s noblest growth, when old and shady.

The cottage, low roofed, veranda protected, was thatched at the early period I recall, the rafters b0.eing picked from the strongest of the slender ti-tree saplings in the brush which bordered the river side. The mansion was not that imposing.

The rooms were of fair size, the hospitality refined, and pervading every look and tone; and we, who in old days, often shared in on our journeys to and from the metropolis of the district, would not have exchanged it for a palace.

YAMBUK -- EXTREMELY PICTURESQUE

A man with a thousand head of well-bred cattle, on a run, capable of holding half as many more, so as to leave a reserve in case of bushfires and bad seasons, was thought fairly endowed with this world’s goods.

If prudent, he was able to afford himself a trip to Melbourne twice a year or so; and to save money in reason. He generally kept a few brood mares, and was enabled to rear a superior hack for himself or friend.

As it was not the custom to keep more than a stockman, and one other man for general purposes, he had a reasonable share of daily work cut out for himself.

Yambuk was then an extremely picturesque station, combining within its limits unusual variety of soil and scenery, land and water. The larger grazing portion consisted of open undulating limestone ridges, which ran parallel with the sea beach.

BLUE AND GOLDEN DAYS

The River Shaw, deepening as it emptied into the ocean, was the south-eastern boundary of the run. Beside the limestone ridges were sandy hillocks, thickly covered with the forest oak, which growing almost to the beach, braved the stern sea-blast.

What was very sound and well sheltered were these low hills, affording the most advantageous quarters to the herd in the long, cold winters of the west.

When our dreamy summertime was o’er, a truly Arcadian season, with “blue and golden days” and purple shadowed eves, wild wrathful gales hurtled over the ocean waste, rioting southward to the pole which lay beyond.

Mustering then in bad weather was a special experience. Gathering on the sea-hills, the winter’s day darkening fast, a drove (herd) of heavy bullocks …lumbering over the sand ridges ahead of us, amid the flying sand and spume (foam), their hoofs in the surf … it was a season study; worth riding many a mile to see.

How often has that picture been recalled to me in later years! The sad-toned, far- stretching shore; the angry storm-voices of the terrible deep; the little band of horsemen; the lowing, half-wild drove; the red-litten cloud prison, wherein the sun lay dying!

<< Life at Yambuk adapted from Australian Pathways, Spring 1998.

Pictures: The cattle are coming! The cattle make a mad dash for land on the side of the creek. One escaped. Two stockman ambushed a bullock.


VALE: AUTHOR MICHAEL BOND WITH PADDINGTON BEAR.

CREATOR OF PADDINGTON BEAR, DIES AT 91 – HE WAS A DAZZLING WIT

The tributes never stop! They poured in for the creator of Paddington Bear Michael Bond who died aged 91. The author passed away at home on Tuesday, July 4, following a short illness. I regard him as one of the finest examples of childrens’ authors around. Bond introduced his famous creation in 1958’s A Bear Called Paddington. He would entertain kids with his bear for more than 20 books. “He will be forever remembered,” his publisher said. – FM.


HEAD COVERING: NED KELLY, IN FULL GEAR, WAITING ON THE REPLY FROM THE POLICE. (SIR SYDNEY NOLAN CENTENARY, AND TO MARK THE 100 YEARS, THIS PRINT OF KELLY IS INCLUDED IN AN EXCLUSIVE COLLECTION OF ICONIC PRINTS. CONTACT: thestore.com.au/nolan

BUSHRANGERS! PART 2. THEY HAD A DEEP-SEATED HATRED OF SQUATTERS

Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

Bushranging in Australia can be divided into two fairly distinct periods or phases. The first bushrangers were convicts who escaped from their chains to the comparative, often temporary, freedom of the wilds.

Of these, Matthew Brady and Martin Cash in Van Diemen’s Land and Willian Westwood (“Jacky Jacky) and Bold Jack Donahoe from NSW are best known. Their careers were, with few exceptions, short and tragic.

The second and major phase of bushranging dates from the 1860s when alluvial gold had largely petered out; and gold-diggers, unable to afford the expense of quartz mining, turned to the land for a livelihood.

Under public pressure, the legislature of NSW introduced a Land Act in 1861, with the object of unlocking the lands to small farming. The squatters, holding the best lands as sheep runs, resented this intrusion on their preserves.

They opposed the new “selectors”, the small scale farmers, with every weapon at their disposal. They employed “dummies” to buy up the blocks of land – the “selections – as they were put up for sale.

DIED GAME                                                                                       

Beside their wealth, the squatters had behind them the power of the legislature. They fenced the small selectors in with variety of repressive measures. The police force was of a generally poor calibre and showed little sympathy for

With few exceptions, the bushrangers of this period and up to the time of Ned Kelly’s death in 1880, sprang from this class. While their motives in turning to robbery under arms were varied and considerable, in each instance an underlying hatred of the squatters seems to have been involved.*

Meet Jack Doolan, the legendary “Wild Colonial Boy”, Ben Hall, “Darkie” Gardiner, Johnny Gilbert, Dunn, “Thunderbolt” and later Ned Kelly. Kelly and his mates all became the people’s hero-symbols in the fight against the squatters.

The bushrangers fought fairly and “died game”, it was claimed.

<< Bill Wannan’s The Australian -- Yarn, legends, ballads; Currey, O’Neil Publishers, Melbourne.

Pictures: They knew everything. Fred Lowry (top) and John Gilbert knew what was expected of the bushranger.


HE’S BACK! SPIDER-MAN PITS HIMSELF FOR ANOTHER JOURNEY AGAINST THUGGERY AND EVIL OPPONENTS.

CLASSIC REPEAT: SPIDER-MAN – THE CULT IS STILL GROWING!

“I’m one of his most ardent fans,” said Stan Lee, the creator.

FRANK MORRIS

The Spider-Man cult is growing in leaps and bounds in Australia, so much so that the genial Super Hero’s comic books have become a much sought-after commodity by collectors.

In some comic exchanges around the country early Spider-Man pulp ranges in price from $10 to $15 a copy. Signed copies by the Spider-Man creators would spiral in price.
The ubiquitous Spider-Man is one of a galaxy of comic superstars that has become a ‘blockbuster’ for the America publishing company, Marvel Comics.

Such literary landmarks as the Amazing Spider-Man and The Avengers -- The Hulk, Iron-man, Thor, Captain America and Back Widow – have paved the way to take the Comic Kingdom by storm.

Spider-Man’s creator, Stan Lee, had been toying about a “doing a strip that would break all the conventions – break all the rules.”

In his book on the history of Marvel Comics, Lee writes: “Just for kicks, I wanted to be different.”

PULP MAGAZINE HEROES

“I wanted to create a strip that would actually feature a teenager as the main character who would lose out as often as he’d win.”

In the 1930s, one of America’s favourite pulp magazine heroes was a stalwart named The Spider. Stan Lee, believe it or not, was one of his “most ardent” fans.

Write Lee: “The Spider wore a slouch hat and a finger ring which, when he punched a foe fearlessly, would leave its mark – an impression of a spider.  “It was The Spider’s calling card and it sent goose pimples up and down my ten-year-old spine.”

Although The Spider had no superhuman powers, Lee “was grabbed” by the name.

I BARED MY SOUL

When Lee mentioned the idea of a spider-type character to his chief he was informed that “people didn’t like spiders” and that it was an unlikely name for a hero.

Write Lee: “It was then I bared my soul. I related how my childish heart would madly pound in breathless anticipation new for each new issue of The Spider.

“I zealously explained that The Spider-Man would be a trendsetter, a freak character in tune with the times.”

Lee contended that everybody knew about Superman – so the time had come for “a competitor” to hit the scene.

And that’s where his childhood took over. It had to be Spider-Man, he writes.

And it was.

<< Grand Years ran this article about 6 years ago. This Spider-Man was originally published in 1984. It wasn’t written until after I had read Stan Lee’s book.


 

CARS: FAMILY’S WOULD LOVE THIS ONE -- PLASTIC PONTIAC, THE GHOST

The 1939 Pontiac DeLuxe Six “Ghost Car” was first displayed at the World’s Fair in New York of that year. It was originally built at a cost of $25,000. It was sold recently by RM Auctions for $309,000.

After the World Fair it went on display to dealers around the country spending some time at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC.

The car had only 86 miles on the clock at the time of the auction.

HOW MANY WERE BUILT?

It was built by General Motors and Rohm & Hess Chemical Company who developed the Plexi-Glas material in 1937. It has been used by the aircraft industry from that time on. The metalwork was treated in copperplate and chrome plating.

How many of unique 1939 Pontiacs were built in a mystery. But it is believed that one was a later update fitted with the 1940s front sheet-metal. The spare wheel is clearly visible from inside the trunk; and the dashboard is in steel, as are the floor panels.

<< Photographs from the Internet and Special Interests Auto magazine. Article appear in Restored Car, May-June 2017.

Picture: Firmly built. The dashboard is in steel, as are the floor panels.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 13 July 17

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