Down the years: Allies reveal plans to put Germany’s Kaiser on trial

Presented by Mildura and District Historical Society. Compiled by Judi Hyde for Mildura Rural City Council Library Service

100 years ago

WAR 1919: Scarcely five years ago the German emperor declared that he would be ­reviewing his troops in Hyde Park, London. In August last year, it looked as if the Germans were winning. A British poet wrote: “A hidden hand, mightier than we knew, which was the unknown factor.” At Waterloo, the French army was one of seasoned veterans, greatly outnumbering in strength and artillery the British forces and led by the greatest general of the day, Napoleon – yet the raw recruits won. Now the Kaiser will be brought to London in a British warship and lodged in the Tower for some months and tried by about 32 nations of the League of Nations. The Allies do not seek a death penalty. Paris will have eight courts to exact the death penalty and Brussels a military court. The Prince of Wales said he hoped to see Aust­ralian soldiers in Australia soon. Australia’s intrepid airman Harry Hawker and Lieut-Commander Grieve were rescued after half an hour in the water. (9.7.19)

LOCAL WAR: Time called the homing pigeon’s use outdated with the invention of telephones, telegraphs and wireless but when they failed it was back to the homing pigeon and “George”, a famous bird completed more than 175 patrols over the sea, homed on 12 occasions with messages from seaplanes – he was reliable. At a thanks­giving service, Pastor Fretwell read the 46th Psalm and Rev E. Wallis announced the singing of the anthem Crossing the Bar, in memory of the fallen. Peace had been purchased at a cost of 60,000 Australian soldiers at Gallipoli or while fighting in France, Belgium, Mesopotamia, etc. Rev McCall wished people could recover something of the great wave of emotion, tears of joy, that spread over the world at the news of the Armistice signing. Owing to the delay in sailing the Prince Ludwidge, 700 soldiers landed at Plymouth threatened to burn their camp and ship unless given shore leave. Sgt A. Duncan, DCM, MM of Wentworth is home, Lieut R. Wilkinson, Pte W. Horridge and Pte W. Treweek, Capt A.D. Thomson, Sgt K. Peterson, MSM, Bombadier W.L. Field, Les Park, Alf Thomas and Percy Tickell, Lieut Pegler, soldier Milne and Pte Barnett also arrived home. (9/12.7.1919)

LOCAL: The annual Winter Show of the H&A Society was held in the Olympia. The exhibits included 33 of citrus, 15 of dried fruits, 36 bottled fruits, 45 jams and jellies, 38 needle works, 27 of cooking, 146 of poultry and 76 of pigeons. Mr S. Taylor staged a pyramid of citrus including a seedless orange, joppas, pomelos and Beauty of the Glen mandarins. The Women’s and Children’s Wharf Labourer’s Relief Committee is appealing for clothing, blankets, potatoes, flour, meat, vegetables, skinned rabbits, food stuffs, etc, saying conditions are appalling. The Royal Humane Society of Australasia listed awards to be presented, among the certificates of merit is one for Fred B. Tyers, of Merbein, who gallantly assisted in a rescue from drowning last Christmas. A letter to the editor states that more men were seen coming from the other clubs than from the Workers’ Club, after officials of the Workers’ Club were condemned for allowing members to drink to excess. Mr C.J. De Garis’ film Sun-Raysed is about to enter on an extensive tour. (9/13.7.1919)

75 years ago

WRITTEN: Window notices are intriguing – some mean what they say and some don’t; many are artistically written, many are not; they are simply notices and that is all there is to them. Some eating houses announce “fresh-cut sandwiches” while others like to impress upon the public that when their proprietors were young they learnt how to write and speak correctly, so they imitate that they sell “freshly cut sandwiches” and therein they join the ranks of those who prefer to advertise “newly laid eggs” rather than “new-laid eggs”. (8.7.1944)

LINCOLN: Frequently quoted and extolled was Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg speech: “Government by, for and of the people.” Few who quoted this so glibly realised that some modern historians cast a grave doubt on the authenticity of the address. Mencken says that not a single paper of importance published this world-shattering speech or even referred to it at the time, although columns of speeches by minor celebrities at the same ceremony were printed. The Gettysburg speech appears to have been a magnificent forgery forced on an unsuspecting and gull­ible world. Another mystery about Lincoln’s life was his assassin­ation – Booth was given a good start then ­suicided when trapped and others accused were allowed no communication with the outside world or to testify or ­offer defence in court – they were hooded and could not recognise witnesses or be recognised. Lincoln’s son Robert found documents with his father’s papers containing ­evidence of treason by Lincoln’s cabinet – these lodged in the Congress Library and stipulated to be opened in 1947. (8/12.7.1944)

WAR: US Thunderbolt planes destroyed 28 out of 50 enemy tanks at Normandy. Rocket-firing Typhoons flew out of thick cloud 500 feet up, staging a series of spectacular attacks. The Minister for the Armed Forces said the first delivery of the approved pattern suit is to be issued to discharged servicemen. Orders for more than two million gallons of citrus juice for the armed services, eight million cans, costing 925,000 pounds, are to be made. A process to establish a POW camp in Mildura is being considered. Capt.A. Hillier, Irymple, Pte H. Peake, Mil­dura, and Pte L. McMahon are on the casualty list. Pte J. Tyas, a POW in Germany, wrote to his wife in Cardross. (7/12.7.1944)

50 years ago

DRIED FRUIT: The sight of the Dried Fruits Stabilisation Fund refund cheque for $1,123,728.97 will gladden the eyes and hearts of growers. Eggless fruit pudding – boil together for three minutes ½ cup evaporated milk (undiluted), 1 cup water, 1 oz shortening, 1 cup mixed fruit and peel, 4 tablespoons sugar, 2 tablespoons chopped nuts and 6 teaspoons mixed spice. Allow to cool, stir in a cup SR flour, pinch of salt, 1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda, which have all been sifted together. Place in a well-greased pudding ­basin. Cover with grease-proof paper or greased lid of pudding basin and steam or boil for two hours. Some people are football-mad but Red Cliffs grower John ‘Tractor’ Carroll admits to being gadget-mad so this year he will go to New Guinea to see the latest farm gadgets there. (8/12.7.1969)

PEOPLE: Mr J. Chislett was elected the new president of the Merbein Rotary Club – he has been connected with the club since its inception in 1953. Merbein CWA was awarded first place in the annual CWA drama festival for Cove Place, based on a smuggling theme. Flags of at least 23 nations will fly at all race meetings at Mildura this season. Grade 2 children from Mildura West State School visited Sunraysia Daily’s printing department. (9/12.7.1969).

ITEMS: A more casual uniform for senior Scouts is long overdue – one that is easier to wear. Two scouts of 2nd Mildura Scout Troop Cubs, Peter Avery and Brian Fields, spent part of Saturday morning trimming up the garden at the Mildura Nurses Home as part of the pack’s good deed. A full parliamentary inquiry into the discharge of saline water into the Murray River via a channel dug by the State Rivers and Water Supply Commission is being called for by South Australia. Thousands of square miles of grazing country in the Western Division of NSW are becoming overgrown with hop bush and Mallee pine as there are no rabbits to eat young trees since myxomatosis and 1080 poison knocked the rabbit. (7/10.7.1969)

25 years ago

PEOPLE: Sunraysia’s Tony Hunt believes he is the first Aboriginal to qualify as a second degree black belt in the Dragon School of Taekwondo and he loves teaching it. More than 750 trees were planted by Irymple South Primary school students to create a native forest walking path. Former Red Cliffs Secondary College VCE student Merryn Redenbach won the Australian Students Prize for academic excellence. She scored 165.5 out of a possible 168. New evidence has come to light in the sinking of the 80-year-old MV Loyalty river boat and the case has been reopened by Dareton police. The winners of the Merbein Golf Club 4BWB Stableford were M. Farnsworth and G. Fyfe with 29 points. (7/11.7.1994)

ITEMS: In Peeps in the Past 50 years ago, Mr J. Thornley, Grand Hotel, has a remarkable old buggy built by Coffey Bros, Melbourne, more than 40 years ago. Despite long years of hard use, the buggy’s original rubber tyres show little wear, the black leather upholstery on the seat is hardly creased, the gold-tipped harness belonging to the buggy is also in good condition. The Settlers proprietor, Mr Wally Medhurst, is selling four turn-of-the-century antique billiard tables. They were made by Alcock, Thomson and Taylor in Melbourne, the tables are priced at about $9000 each with accessories and lights. The VITAS hospice program in Florida, US, has 12 therapy dogs that service 26 nursing homes and the value to residents in care is so beneficial the residents want them to visit every day. The Kennett Government want to close five small hospitals at Donald, Kerang, Wycheproof, Ouyen and Manangatang – locals would like the people of Melbourne to have to travel hours to a hospital bed – his government would then fall. (7/13.7.1994)

BALLOONS: Pilots from all over the world are competing in the Pacific World Championship here. The only woman is Miykoko Kokubo, of Japan, she and a friend made their own balloons while still at college. She has flown in the US, Russia, the Philippines, Tibet, Siberia, Austria, Spain, Switzerland and now Australia. She is a freelance film director in Japan and says our landscape is wonderful. Today the predicted winds of 10 knots are too strong for balloons so the 29 balloonists are taking a rest break. Mr E. Hughes recalled the first hot-air balloon flight here in 1912 and is amazed at the size and colour of balloons now flown. Australian pilots took out the 1994 Pacific and the Australian National Championships held here this week. (9.7.1994)

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