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Snippets 30 April 2008
About the Time Capsule – If you accept flyers in your Post Box, you have received the pictured printed envelope (last week’s News) with attached invitation. If you would like to receive an invitation to submit to the Time Capsule, just ring Dave on 6829 2923. You can also pick one up at Heritage Cottage on Wed, Fri or Sat, 10-4pm, or by ringing 6829 0747 and leaving a message.

The Reply Paid envelope is for your submission to the Time Capsule – no stamp is required. We would like to thank the Post Office for supporting this project. Please spread the word to celebrate the town’s 100 years by submitting your story to the Time Capsule.

Barbara Moritz
Secretary



15 May 2008 01:47pm
Snippets 23 April 2008
Tony and Kay Donnelly, their two daughters and families were in town recently from the Dubbo area. Tony’s grandad, Jack Donnelly, came from Victoria to Walgett about 1899 then went to Cumborah. His parents followed their only son. Mick was a butcher in Old Town then, in1909, Jack took over the business in New Town.

In 1910, the elder Donnellys built the weatherboard house in Opal Street, owned by Betty Dawson when it burned in 1993. The Arthur Molyneux family lived there in the 1940s and added the verandah, then the Vollers until 1955.

Jack Donnelly married Minnie McKenzie in 1903. They had 14 children, mostly girls, and lived at Beckett’s Tank until 1918 when he drew a Soldier Settler Block, Home View, near Hebel. The late Grace Molloy, a daughter, didn’t want to leave the Tank and remembered being dragged from the clothesline post to which she was clinging.

Mick died in 1914 and Granny Donnelly stayed on in Opal Street. Her older granddaughters lived with her to finish school when the family moved to Queensland. The late Ted Dawson, who was 5 when his family lived across the street 1919-1924, fondly remembered Granny. Ted’s maternal grandfather, Ted Mooring, took over Jack Donnelly’s butchery in Morella Street, later, Dawson’s Store.

A few years ago, Tony and family brought up his grandparents’ opal scales. They are in Heritage Cottage bearing a commemorative plaque. They also donated a 1911 Race Club Dance Card, the only tangible evidence of the very first race meeting at Lightning Ridge. It is a treasured memento of the town. The family is keen to participate in the 100 years celebration of the Race Club, 2011.

Recently, a Donnelly family reunion was held. Locals Peter McKenzie and Donna Lund are from a branch of the Donnelly family tree. Descendents of several pioneer families can celebrate 100 years in Lightning Ridge and environs.

Barbara Moritz
Secretary


15 May 2008 01:45pm
Snippets 16 April 2008
Barry Graves, Principal of the Lightning Ridge School 1964 to 1967, was in town last week. He brought fellow Probus members for a look around and they probably didn’t miss much. He also brought up a few items to donate to the society’s collection for the town.

Barry and Pat loved their time at the Ridge as did their two young children. They’ve made a CD of their photos and prepared a book of memorabilia that takes us through their time here. Barry brought up a framed oil painting by the late Tex Moekel, who was building the Bottle House in 1966. The scene is a cool ocean view but Barry was quick to point out that an inland tree is featured.

We are in touch with two of the four Moekel daughters. The one in Germany has told us that her father did NOT empty all those bottles to build his house – he had lots of mates! The girls are sharing their memories of Tex, also early photos, with the society. The Bottle House was the second tourist attraction after the Walk-in Mine.

Barbara Moritz
Secretary
13 April 2008 02:52pm
Snippets 9 April 2008
Mim Sadler’s adopted niece, Sandra Sharp from Gouldsville, hopes to visit Heritage Cottage Hospital Gallery in the next months to see the treadle sewing machine and fancy cloth cover display. She remembers that Mim and Tom came to the Ridge around 1950. Sandra and her husband Jim last visited in 2002.

A surprise visitor this week was Mary Voller Buckley with her husband Jon from Foster. We looked at old photos together on the Gallery’s verandah and Mary shared some of her mischievous childhood adventures! She remembers Nurse Lyla Coville, 1940s, well because her daughters were Mary’s playmates and ‘partners in crime’.

Nurse Coville looked after bush nursing at the Ridge at a time that the community could not support a nurse from BNA in Sydney. The little nurse’s cottage was run down and the village was very poor. In 1947, a BNA nurse was here again, but only briefly, because she got married. We have that short story as told by former nurse Marge Kirkby in Sydney.

Mary and Jon came especially to see local Dave Voller, her brother, and a cousin Lynette. Their father and uncle, respectively, Norm Voller, was born in Carinda. He was a traditional opal miner and worked the sheering season but always returned to digging. He and Lillian had four children – Norma, Mary, Les and David.

Mary has asked to place a Voller memory plaque on the Hospital Gallery verandah. They cost $80 and you may want to do the same for your own family. Please come down and have a look at our quiet space where you can reflect upon family history.

Barbara Moritz
Secretary
5 April 2008 02:24pm
Snippets 2 April 2008
Mim Sadler’s treadle sewing machine is on display in the Hospital Gallery featuring a machine-embroidered cloth. Her friend, the late Frank Gunnarson, King of the Swedes on the 3-Mile in the 1960s, donated these items before his demise in 2007. Mim was a dressmaker, also a keen gardener, on the 3-Mile in earlier years. She was Waterford’s nanny on Lorne Station and was present at Marianne Waterford Webb’s birth.

Mim was born in France in 1899 and met her English husband Tom, a survivor of Gallipoli, after the War. They were a popular couple on the opal fields. Tom was a locksmith by profession. It is said that he made the locks for old Parliament House in Canberra. He was fifteen years Mim’s senior and, when he got sick in 1971, went to his friend Billy Lang’s in Brewarrina where he died and is buried.

Sadler’s camp was on the Western Fall and their cabin was framed with flowers. The Society has a lovely photo of Mim, a petite woman, standing amongst her dahlias that were as tall as was she. She died in 1983 and Frank cared for her grave. Some of his ashes are now buried under an aloe vera planted at her feet.

Barbara Moritz
Secretary

29 March 2008 10:22pm