ADHS Newsletter No. 162, AUGUST, 1998

Items of interest –

  • History in the Pyrenees project
  • Genealogical Research Directory
  • Death of Lorraine Brear
  • Newspaper photos of Avoca places and people, 1940, 1954, 1931
  • Avoca A.N.A. 1921

A beautiful spring day was enjoyed by those who attended the official launching of the History in the Pyrenees project on Sunday, 23rd August, with about 80 people present at Avoca in the morning and approximately 70 in attendance at Toll Bar Park, Lexton, in the afternoon. This project has been a joint effort by the Pyrenees Tourism Association and the Lexton Progress Association in conjunction with the Pyrenees Shire’s former Tourism and Economic Development Officer, Monica Cavarsan, and was funded by Parks Victoria. Sue Slater and Margaret and Harry Oulton, all members of our Society, have been responsible for the co-ordination of the project in their respective towns.

The major aims of this project were to up-date the existing Heritage Walk brochures and to provide accompanying signage. Approximately 35 plaques (25 of them in Avoca ) now indicate historic locations, giving the original name of the building, the year it was built (if known) and other interesting information.

In officially launching the historic walk at 11 am outside the Avoca Post Office, well-known historian and Churchill Fellow Joan Hunt spoke on the interesting background history of the area, after which those present set off on a shortened version of the official 1½-hour walk, conducted by Sue Slater, before adjourning to the Avoca Shire Hall for a very nice lunch, provided by the local Girl Guides. Bruce Field, of the Pyrenees Tourism Association, acted as MC. An excellent display of photographs of Avoca, arranged by this Society, created much interest with the visitors.

The scene of activity moved to Toll Bar Park at Lexton at 2 pm when Stephen Elder, the local member, performed the official launching of the project in that area. Again, Joan Hunt spoke on the history of the district and brought together the fact that Major Thomas Mitchell had traversed the district on his landmark expedition through Australia Felix in September, 1836, and we were now following with our own historic walk. The walk at Lexton was conducted by Margaret Oulton. A delicious afternoon tea was then served at the Lexton Community Centre, courtesy of the Lexton Community Club, and Max Hobson, President of the Lexton Progress Association, acted as MC. Old maps and photographs of the area were displayed and added interest to the occasion.

Official visitors on the day included the Shire President, Neil Hamer, and his wife, June, the Shire CEO, Brian Kiley, and Cr. David Clark. The organisers were thrilled to see representatives of many historical societies and organisations enjoying the day. These included Avoca, Ararat, Landsborough, Talbot, the Ironbark Heritage Group and the CHHA. Special visitors were Mr. and Mrs. Geoff Foggo, from Adelaide; Geoff is a great-grandson of David and Janet Anderson, who were the first permanent settlers at Lexton, along with William Millar and his family, when they set up their carriers’ depot there in 1845.

With the aid of the new brochures and the plaques marking the historic points of interest, it is hoped visitors in the future will gain a better understanding of the history of the areas.

At our monthly meeting held at the Court House on Sunday, 16th August, members busied themselves adding more information and index cards to our vast collection.

Our next meeting will be held at the Court House on Sunday, 20th September, when preparations will be made for our display onFamilies which is to be held on 18th October.

Our Society will be represented at the CHHA History Expo at Ballarat on the 24th and 25th October, where the theme of Families will also be featured, and a new book by Joan Hunt is to be launched. The latest CHHA History Journal will also be available there. The venue is the Ranger Barracks, Curtis Street, Ballarat, and the hours are 10 am – 4.30 pm both days.

Come to this Expo and discover YOUR connection with the Ballarat and neighbouring goldfields. There will be more than 40 exhibitors, providing experts in the following areas –

Victorian Births, Deaths and Marriages; Victorian Shipping Records; Cemetery Indexes; Genealogical Indexes; Hospital Indexes; Mining Indexes and Records; Immigration Indexes for Scottish, Irish, Cornish, Welsh, and Swiss-Italian settlers.

Saturday’s Programme: 10 am – Exhibition opens; 10.30 am – Official Opening; 11 am – Talk: How to Start Researching Your Family History; 3 pm – Talk – Researching Overseas Records; 4 pm – Exhibition Closes.

Sunday’s Programme: 10 am – Exhibition opens; 11 am – Talk: How to Research on the Internet; 3 pm – Talk: Dating Family Photographs; 4.30 pm – Exhibition Closes.

Admission: Single $3.00; Family $5.00; Talk $2.00; Children Free.

Joint Ticketing with Eureka Centre and Montrose Cottage available.

Light refreshments available on both days.

Lamplough on the Internet – In last month’s newsletter, mention was made of the Lamplough Names Index which our member, Denis Strangman, has placed on the Internet. The latest report from Denis indicates that, as of early August, nearly 800 had visited the Website, with 136 visiting the on-line version of the accompanying article about the Lamplough goldrush. As Denis comments, there is a vast army of people on the Internet who are engaged in family history research, all eagerly seeking information. If any of our computer-buff members wish to contact this Society re information on the Avoca area gleaned from the Internet, our Assistant Secretary, Wendy Taylor, has agreed to be our ‘mailbox’ at her E-mail address:- wtaylor@netdig.com.au (now changed to wtaylor@goldnet.com.au)

On the Move! As from 31st August, 1998, the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages will be relocating to Transport House, 589 Collins Street, Melbourne. The customer service area will be located on the Ground Floor and all other functions of the Registry will be located on Level 17. The Registry’s postal address remains as PO Box 4332, Melbourne, Vic., 3001. Australian Document Exchange address remains as DX210637, Melbourne. The fax number for applications for Birth, Death or Marriage certificates remains as 03 9603 5880. The general enquiries telephone number for the Registry will remain as 1300 369 367 (Within Australia for the cost of a local call); (Outside Australia +61 9603 5800).

Genealogical Research Directory – The GRD is the largest Surname queries listing published annually in bookform. It is a way for you to discover relatives anywhere in the world who are researching your own family and to exchange information with them. Entries for the 1999 edition of the GRD close on 30th November, 1998, and entry forms are available from Keith Johnson, PO Box 795, North Sydney, NSW 2059. You receive a copy of the Directory in which your entries are published. Cost in Australia is $29.75 plus $5.75 postage. You can visit the GRD Home Page on http://www.ozemail.com.au/~grdxxx. The GRDs for 1990-1996 are now available on CD-ROM.

Your Editor really must do something about placing her interests in the GRD – had I done so earlier, it would have saved another researcher much time and money seeking confirmation of the birth of an ancestor. This lady was thrown completely off the trail because this ancestor, on his marriage certificate, gave his place of birth as Glasgow, Scotland, when in fact he was born on the goldfields here near Bendigo, and I have a copy of the birth certificate she seeks.

New Members -A warm welcome is extended to the following new members:

Mr. Lynton and Mrs. Judy SMITH of Swan Hill whose interests are BLAKE, DEAN, BURRELL, COLLINS, JONES and the areas of Landsborough, Navarre, Stawell, Avoca, St. Arnaud and Barkly.

Mr. Dannie MAYWOOD of Landsborough who is researching the BULLOCK, WILKINSON, MAYWOOD, LOCKWOOD and CANTY families and is also interested in police history.

Donations – The Society sincerely thanks the following members for their generous contributions to the Court House Restoration Fund:- P. Pora, P. Boyd, K. Chapman, L. Reid, D. Hansen, E. Cocking, L. Griffiths, L. Croft, V. Intihar, E. Roberts, Mr. and Mrs. B. Cherry, S. Driscoll, S. and B. Slater, J. Heapey and C. Rohde.

Vale. Members of the Society were saddened to learn of the death of Lorraine Brear (nee Bock) on the 2nd August, aged 79 years, after a long illness. Lorraine’s interest was the Barbat family of Avoca. She and her family joined in enthusiastically at the opening of the Court House in April, 1993, and many will remember her on that day in her blue-green period costume with her smart matching chapeau, all of which she had created herself. After a service at St. John’s Anglican Church at Heathcote on the 6th August, the funeral proceeded to the Heathcote Cemetery. We extend our deepest sympathy to all her family on their sad loss.

Snippets of Interest – The new postal address for Victorian Police Records is PO Box 52, Hepburn Springs, Vic. 3461.

If you have an ancestor who came from Ireland 1800-1845 (especially before 1810) for conduct of a “political” character (belonging to a secret society, treasonable language, appearing armed, etc.), Ireland 1798 Australian Research, PO Box 1137, Darlinghurst, NSW 2010 (phone 02 9699 3395) would appreciate your contribution to the construction of a database of such exiles and convicts.

Do you have anyone buried in an unmarked grave in Inverell RC Cemetery? Information would be appreciated by the Inverell Family History Group, PO Box 367, Inverell, NSW 2360.

(The above snippets are from Bulletin No. 134, July/August, 1998, of the Newcastle Family History Society Inc.)


The following photographs were noted by member Helen Harris OAM in newspapers held at the State Library.

Weekly Times 26 October, 1940, p .7

Heading: Life is Happy at Avoca

Girls who competed in the Red Cross Tennis Tournament (no names)

State school girls and boys exercising (no names)

Hogg’s Reef miners (no names); Mr. Theo Leonard, manager.

Miss Edna Wardlaw watching her brother George shear a lamb.

Girls Patriotic Guild members: Misses Grace Saw, Mary Chapman, Bella Dwyer, Betty Mitchell, Stella Wade, Isla Chapman, Viccie McDonald, Jean McDonald, Helen Storrar and Rene Davies.

Bush Nursing Hospital: Dr. M. C. Davies, Sister J. Fraser, Miss Joyce Yates.

Avoca Golf Club: Mrs. J. J. McDonald, Mrs. Lew Summers, nine unidentified women.

Weekly Times 15 December, 1954, p. 18

Heading: Prominent People of Avoca

Bowling club members: H. Morris, E. Gollop, A. F. Stuart, A. G. Mackie, A. R. Rowe,

E. Summers, M. Proctor, W. Gledhill , F. N. Chapman, H. Powers, J. Joseph.

Bowling club associates: Mesdames J. Blair, M. Ellis, A. Mackie, F. L. Burns, J. Joseph.

State School Mothers’ Club: Mesdames M. Ellis, J. Hulands, H. Powers, A. Mackie,

C. McInnes, L. Dunston, M. Proctor, A. McCann.

CWA and Hospital Auxiliary: Mesdames D. Rowlandson, D. Trickey, P. C. Trainor, J. E. Blackney, H. Harrison, L. Shiell, W. H. French, J. J. McDonald, J. Jess, R. W. Trembath, L. Dunstan, L. Bird, H. Worthington, C. McInnes, W. Shields, Misses E. Scott, V. Classen.

Infant Welfare Committee: Mesdames Max Henderson, W. Shields, Jack Henderson, B. Baud, C. L. McInnis, H. Chapman, J. Glenfell, P. C. Trainor, W. H. French, A. Castleman, A. Beissert.

RSL Members: F. N. Chapman, B. F. Briggs, M. W. Dawson, O. W. Stewart, L. Quirk,

T. J. Henderson, A. G. Walker, D. Reid, R. H. Nation, Rev. C. J. King, J. O. McRorie, C.L. McInnes, F. H. Collison, C. A. Wynn.

Senior children at State School (no names given).

Avoca Football Team: Named: E. W. Hedge, L. Quirk, J. Barker, S. W. Driscoll, H. Morris.

Shire Councillors and Officials: W.W. Hodgetts, S.W. Driscoll, F.H. Boatman, A. Rowe, L.N. Lindsay, J.E. Ellen, J. Richardson, J.A. Farnsworth, D.G. Williams, B. Driscoll, J.I. Grenfall.

Weekly Times 15 December 1954, p. 54

Heading: Avoca has several thriving industries.

Urban Fire Brigade: Named – H. Powers, W.H. Gledhill, I. Golder, W. Dawson.

Township Improvement Trust Committee: Named – M.W. Dawson, F.N. Chapman, J.E. Ellen, R. Henderson, C.L. McInnis.

Waterworks Trust Commission: W. Gledhill, F.N. Chapman, L.N. Lindsay, I. Golder, J.E. Ellen, A.R. Rowe, J.I. Glenfell, S.W. Driscoll.

Employees of Avoca branch of Maryborough Knitting Mills (unnamed).

Members of the Tennis Club: Named – H. Chapman, R. Henderson, Mrs. W. Harris.

Staff of Textile Arts Pty. Ltd.: Named – H. Barns, H.G. Shimmin

Croquet Club members: Mesdames L. Shiell, W. Gledhill, J.J. McDonald, F. Gleisner, J. Richardson, W.H. French, H. Worthington, J. Ellen, J. Jess, F. Jolly.

Central Victoria Dredging Co. employees (unnamed).

RSL Auxiliary: Mesdames W.H. French, C.L. McInnis, T. Henderson, J. Jess, H. Harrison, F. Jolly, L. Shiell, D. Rowlandson.

Junior children at the State School (unnamed)

The Leader 6 June 1931, p.27/28

Heading: Avoca and some of its people and institutions (No names given)

Pool on Avoca River

War Memorial

State Savings Bank

Tennis enthusiasts at semi final of Avoca District competition

Bridge over Avoca River

Well-known townspeople

Officials and semi finalists of Avoca Tennis Association

Group at the Sports Oval

Victoria Hotel

High Street; Post Office; Bank of Victoria; State School

AVOCA – A.N.A. (From the ‘Avoca Mail’, 7th June, 1921)

At the last meeting of the Avoca Branch of the A.N.A., President W. R. Gledhill in the chair, the secretary submitted a report of the foundation of the Branch, and on the motion of Messrs. Blackney and Wardlaw, that officer was directed to procure, if possible, photos of the fourteen foundation members with the view to having the same framed and hung in the meeting room