Down the years: Lizzie comes to town

Big Lizzie on tree-pulling duties at Red Cliffs.

Big Lizzie on tree-pulling duties at Red Cliffs.

 100 years ago

FOOTBALL: At Merbein, in the presence of a much larger attendance of spectators, a surprise was effected by Irymple. Scores are not to hand but we learnt that a feature of the game was the play of McDonell, the Irymple skipper, play which he backed up with excellent goal-kicking. McNaughton umpired with his usual ability. As a result of these matches, the four teams are now level – one win and a defeat apiece. (11.7.1917)

SOLDIERS: Lance Corporal C.Woodham, Private George Butler and Private G. Tizard, were cordially welcomed by the Shire President Cr Henderson, who said on behalf of the Mildura residents all were proud of the service rendered by them and the ready way in which they had offered themselves when the call of duty came. The soldiers were escorted to the hall by the District Band and the Fire Brigade – all sympathized with them in their wounds and hoped they would soon regain their health and strength. Mrs E. Gallagher received the Military Medal so gallantly won by her son, the late Sergeant Godfrey Gallagher. The accompanying note from His Majesty, the King, stated that he was pleased to award the medal to that gallant soldier for conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty. (11.7.1917)

SALE: Washington’s sale now in full swing has Men’s fashion shirts for 3/6, 20 pairs of Lace Curtains for 8/11 pair, Longcloth Embroideries and insertions 1/11 dozen, Boys’ and Girls’ Navy Wool Sweaters 4/11 to 6/11, Mens’ natural Merino Singlets and Underpants 2/11, Ladies’ Mole Caracut coat, new swing back and belt, 69/6 and Imitation Pony Skin coat, lined and smart Fur Collar only 49/6. Phone 42. (14.7.1917)

 75 years ago

RED CLIFFS: Born 21 years ago as the indirect result of World War I, Red Cliffs took its place in the dried fruits industry and became known throughout Australia as a soldier settlement where the sword had been successfully beaten into the ploughshare. The spirit born in the mud of Flanders, on the heights of Gallipoli, lived on to provide a bond of good fellowship, blocks took shape, rough shanties grew into modern homes and many of the original 267 settlers pause to think of the early days. In Thursday’s July 9th, 1942 Sunraysia Daily paper, there is a numerical list of the first 276 soldier settlers’ allotments. “Big Lizzie”, a huge cater­pillar tractor of sorts, driven by her constructor and owner, came from southward to help in wholesale tree-pulling operations, the writer rode nearly to Carwarp to meet the monster with a trail of wagons which housed the owner’s family. Red Cliffs shifted to the East side of the railway. Barker and Parks were the forerunner of many fine shops. (9.7.1942)

LOCAL ITEMS: The Mildura Bridge was closed today for a Military manoevre overseen by Lieut Gen.Whitham, Commander of the VDC, Major-Gen Henkin, Major Schofeld and Captain Trebilcock. Women desirous of learning home nursing with a view to assist the Red Cross Emergency Company in emergencies that classes will be held in the Salvation Army Hall. There is an extreme shortage of newsprint for the production of newspapers – the price is now 42 pounds per ton, the pre-war price was 17 pounds per ton. 10.7.1942)

MEN: Fifteen district men are reported missing overseas. The list provided by the Australian Military Forces lists: Ptes H.Fitzgerald, H.Furze, I.Johns, R.Maddy, R.Taylor, L. Wallace, A.Warburton, E.Warburton, W.O.H.E.R.Mason, Cpl .Oconnor, Gnr J.Oliver, Gnr J.Nancarrow, Sgnr J.Mareblank, Pte E.Johua and Pte W.Freeman. (11.7.1942)

 50 years ago

EVENTS: A tractor pulling a giant floor polisher will be used to transform the floor of the Drill Hall into a polished dance floor for the CMF Officers’ Mess ball – a total sell out event – officers will wear their regimental dress “blues” for the occasion. The Merbein Methodist Ladies’ Guild will celebrate their 40th Anniversary. The Broadway production of the musical “Robert and Elizabeth” starring June Bronhill, was cancelled as Mr F. Moritt, a retired Supreme Court Judge, only wants his version of the musical done in the U.S.A.(11.7.1967)

FIELD DAY: More than 4000 vine and citrus growers trade representatives and gadgeteers will assemble at the 14th Irymple Gadget Field day. One of the attractions will be a show of films by Mildura engineering firm, Andy’s Engineers, of some of the machines they sell and how to operate them – such as the air-powered pruning machine. (11.7.1967)

ROOSEVELT: For 20 of the first 45 years of this century two men named Theodore and Franklin, were presidents of the United States. They were distant cousins and in different ways were outstanding Presidents. (12.7.1967)

25 years ago

BAND: The Wimmera bands group has been conducting its 22nd annual camp this week at the Mildura Secondary College. Last year the event was held in Horsham with over 158 students attending. The cost of the musical holiday has been reduced by the billeting of visiting students. (9.7.1992)

COUNTRY ROUND-UP: Sunraysia residents have doubted that there are big cods to be caught in the Mildura section of the Murray River but proof is now hanging on the wall of the Nangiloc Store – a 70lb cod caught by Mr J. Robinson, who sold it to the store co-owner, Mr B.Cox. Motorists at Merbein have been forgiven for thinking they had slipped into a timewarp when Mr H.Goldup fired up his McLaren Road Locomotive, which was built in Leeds, England in 1912, to get all steamed up to drive to Wentworth. Mr T Higgins went along to keep him company in his Bulldog tractor. (9.7.1992)

YOUTHS JOBLESS: Mildura Police say youth crime has no social bounds – it affects any family no matter what the socio­economic status. Sunraysia’s youth are a parents’ responsibility – youth workers reinforce the importance of home support. The young homeless/destitute are forced to turn to crime in order to survive, some due to domestic violence, many shoplift in order to have food, clothing or cigarettes. The call is also for businesses to use middle-aged jobless who provide expertise and work skills. (10.7.1992)  

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