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Last Update
6th of July 2017

History Lives

Our President, Jim Evans regularly writes history articles relating to our collection or local historical activities.


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Silent Joe
Norm Harris worked at the Charleston Road Saleyards where he was Superintendent. I mentioned to Norm that there is a short strip of asphalt leading up from the roadside to the entrance to the Bendigo East Swimming Pool and he said that was where ‘Silent Joe’ used to sit.
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Strauss in Bendigo
There is a story in ‘Bendigo, the German Chapter’, edited by the late Frank Cusack, about a visit to Bendigo of the world renowned composer, Richard Strauss. This event does not get a mention in the ‘Annals of Bendigo’, but the snippet in the book tells of a welcome he received on his visit to Bendigo, early in the twentieth century, which was described as ‘unique’.
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Visits by Famous People to Bendigo
Recent news on the famous Beehive building is encouraging, with further restoration on the former Stock Exchange section about to take place. The following is some of the history of the Beehive. As one writer pointed out well over a century ago, ‘almost every city has some particular building or buildings known to all its inhabitants.
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Sonny you have lost your Pannikin" by Tom Luke
From my memory of growing up in the 1940’s in Kangaroo Flat now a suburb of Bendigo, but at the time part of the Shire of Marong. The year was 1940 the day was Monday April 1st (April Fool's Day) and as a student in Grade 2 at the Kangaroo Flat State School Number 981 I was walking my way to School. My Schoolbag was on my back and attached to it was an Enamel Pannikin (Enamel Cup).
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The Beehive
Recent news on the famous Beehive building is encouraging, with further restoration on the former Stock Exchange section about to take place. The following is some of the history of the Beehive. As one writer pointed out well over a century ago, ‘almost every city has some particular building or buildings known to all its inhabitants.
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Anthony Trollope – the ‘World’s First Celebrity’
Famous English novelist visited Australia and New Zealand in the 1870s and later published a book on his odyssey, described by the London Times newspaper as the best account of this part of the world. He may be regarded as the world’s first celebrity. Trollope visited Sandhurst (Bendigo) during this time and made some harsh judgments on the city.
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The Ladies Leichardt Expedition
‘Last drinks at Menindee in the year of 1860; after eleven drunken weeks it's time to take your leave and be the first to cross the country to the Gulf.'
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History Lives in Books - Books for Christmas from BHS
If you are looking for a book on history, look no further than Specimen Cottage at 178-180 Hargreaves Street for a wide range of publications at very reasonable prices.

Extracts from the Bendigo Advertiser, edited as ‘Annals of Bendigo' are essential reading for all those interested in Bendigo's rich history. Specimen Cottage has two volumes of the Annals, 1951 – 1970 and 1971 – 1987.

Society publications, ‘Historic Guide to Bendigo 2009 edition and ‘Self Guided Tours of Historic Bendigo' are available at reduced prices. The much sought after ‘Melbourne to Bendigo Railway 1862 – 2012', commemorating 150 years of railway history, is unfortunately sold out, but copies of the updated ‘History of the Shamrock Hotel' edited by Society member, David Mulqueen is for sale.

Books by other Bendigo Historical Society members, Rita Hull, Carol Holsworth, James Lerk and John Kelly, on subjects ranging from street names, cemeteries and mining history are in demand as well. DVDs on Mining and Fortuna are also for sale. For further information, click on ‘Publications'


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Waverley Prize
Bendigo Senior Secondary College has continued to award the Waverley Essay Prize – an award presented since 1878. The prize takes its name from the Waverley novels written by the immensely popular Sir Walter Scott. Ravenswood Homestead, near Bendigo, takes its name from one of the most famous of these novels, The Bride of Lammermoor.
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‘Life, Death & Gold in the Whipstick’ by Ian Belmont
With its striking cover of a painting by Edwin Stockqueler of the Australian Gold Diggings, Ian Belmont’s story of Raywood and surrounds, contains a plethora of descriptions, obituaries and stories, written in the 1860s and later, by correspondents of the day, describing life in the goldfields of Bendigo’s Whipstick,
centred on Raywood, Neilborough, Sebastian and Myers Creek.
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Bendigo The Right Fist of God
There have been many names for ‘Bendigo', as is evidenced by the T-shirt designed by Bendigo Historical Society member, David Mulqueen, for the first Post Office Gallery Exhibition, curated by Sandra Bruce in 2010.
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Of: "Manual Telephone Exchanges, Fixed Line Telephones and Korweinguboora" by Tom Luke
What a title !! How do we tie these items together ? Read on to discover another place somewhere in time, and human beings and communications of an era long since gone.
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Red Ribbon
A copy of one of the most important documents in Australia’s goldrush history, the Bendigo Petition of 1853 in the possession of the Bendigo Historical Society. This Petition lists more than 5000 signatures and is 13 metres long. It was presented to Lieutenant-Governor LaTrobe during the great meetings of August 1853, which were part of the Red Ribbon Movement.
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Jim Evans on Racism
It is sometimes claimed that as a result of 26 January 1788, Australia became an inclusive society. This is hardly what a reading of historical events since that time would bear out.
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Rob Upson on THE COHN BROTHERS OF BENDIGO
The restored illuminated address to Jacob Cohn now hangs in the Bendigo Town Hall, thanks to a donation from the late Helen Bruinier and the work by her son Leo Bruinier. In 1853, three brothers, Moritz, Julius and Jacob Cohn left their hometown of Horsens in Denmark and sailed in the ship Antelope to the southern shores of Australia. On arrival at Port Phillip in August that year they immediately set off for the goldfields of Bendigo.
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Salute to local historians
In 1961, four mates from Victoria, visited the site of the Battle of Marathon, famous now more for the Olympic race of endurance dating back to the original ‘marathon' of Phidippides, than for the fact that the ancient Greeks defeated the invading Persians.
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The Day the Queen came to Bendigo
Friday March 5th 1954 a momentous day for the City of Bendigo.
On a train at 4:05PM the Queen arrived in Bendigo.
Many questions have been asked like “Do you remember the day the Queen visited us ?”.
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Dame Nellie Melba and the Shamrock
Which famous singer complained about the chimes on the Post Office Clock? Probably most Bendigonians would give
as their answer, Dame Nellie Melba. 19th May
2016 is the 155th anniversary of the birth
of the famous diva.
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Origins of the railway line
The railways in the State of Victoria, prior to 1883 had all been privately owned. The State Government then established the vertically integrated Victorian Railways Department in 1883. In 1884 the Victorian State Parliament passed The Railway Construction Act, which authorised fifty-nine new lines to almost every corner of the state, and thus became known as the Octopus Act.
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How I rode the O’Keefe Rail Trail behind a Steam Locomotive
The year was 1953 National Service was in full swing and Sgt. Tom Luke as the Battalion Film Projectionist was in annual camp with the 38th Infantry Battalion at Site 17 just outside Seymour.
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Missing A Museum
Bendigo writer, John Holton, once quoted a Melbourne friend as saying, “I can't believe you guys don't have a museum. It's the only thing missing from this town.” A museum, along with an art gallery, library and a theatre are visible signs of a liveable and civilised city.
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William Beebe Sr.
Recently, members of the Bendigo Historical Society visited the former home of William Beebe Sr. - ‘Rocky Vale - at Maiden Gully, as the guest of property manager, David Fisher.
Beebe Sr. is not as well known as his architect son, William Beebe Jr., but his role in the history of Bendigo deserves to be better known.
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A History Museum for Bendigo
Bendigo has a first class Art Gallery and a unique theatre – the Ulumbarra. What is lacking is a general historical Museum. A History Museum has been on the city agenda since the first Bendigo Historical Society was formed in 1935 and the item is still widely discussed by Bendigonians. Click Here To Read More


early art exhibition
Early Art Exhibition Private Collection.
Fine Arts Exhibition at the Sandhurst Mechanics Institute, 1869. In 1890 the Art Gallery moved to what had been the Orderly Room of the Volunteer Rifle Corps which remains part of the present Gallery complex in View Street.

 
 
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