Monday, January 8, 2018

January 8 On This Day in Australian History

Today is the Lesser Festival of the Ancient Greek God Dionysus, God of revelry and wine.
Guess what some of you will get up to today!

1789 - The first European baby pupped on Norfolk Island, son of Superintendent Philip Gidley King and convict woman Ann Inett, was named (drumroll for those unimaginative parents) Norfolk.
You think that's bad, she had another son to King, back in Sydney that was named....Sydney.

1799 - Saw Bass and Flinders bobbing about in the Tom Thumb in and around Tassie and assorted islands, proving that the umbilical cord that once connected Tassie to the mainland was long gone; today they made a return visit to the Furneaux Islands for a cuppa tea on their journey back to Port Jackson.

1803 - Capt. Anthony Fenn Kemp and Lieuts Thomas Hobby and Nicholas Bayly arrested for being involved in "scurrilous attacks" on Gov King.

1804 - The first recorded cricket match took place in the New South Wales colony.

1810 – The Derwent Star and Van Diemen's Land Intelligencer, Australia's second newspaper and the first in Van Diemen’s Land, began publication.

1814 - George Evans advocated building a road over the Blue Mountains, to follow in the tracks of Blaxland, Lawson and Wentworth.

1818 - Gov Macquarie was a tad miffed at the Flogging Parson Samuel Marsden, accusing him of conspiracy (!!!) so he told him not to darken the doorstep of Govt House again!
So there!

1846 - Ursula Frayne, the leader of the first group of The Sisters Of Mercy, landed at Fremantle WA on this day.

1847 - George Barney and party leave Sydney in the barque Lord Auckland to found the Gladstonecolony in northern Australia centred on Port Curtis.

1849 - The Plymouth, the first of a number of ships carrying people to the California goldfields, left Port Jackson for San Francisco.

1867 - The Mining Corner buildings were removed in Ballarat.

1868 - The Earl of Belmore became the Governor of NSW. Of course he was second choice after Pearl the Pole Dancer of Digger's Ditch...

1872 - The Lydiard St, Ballarat, Wesleyan Sunday School opened.

1878 - Today was known as "Black Wednesday", when Victorian Premier Graham Berry wouldn't just take his bat and ball and go home but instead dismissed more than 200 public servants, starting with police and judges, in response to the upper house blocking his Appropriations Bill. Berry argued that without an Appropriations Bill they could not be paid. A fine time was had by all who weren't observing any laws...

1878 - The Melbourne to Portland railway line opened.

1881 - A cyclone, which killed 16 people, decimated the pearling fleet on the Ashburton River, WA.

1887 - The town of Wilson, in South Oz, at 8pm on this day was rocked by an earthquake that was reported thus,
'They heard a sound as of a mighty rushing wind, with throbbing and trembling of the earth which sometimes lifted up a couple of inches. Every house shook for more than a minute. People ran out into the streets, some wondering if the end had come. Others expected the earth to open up and swallow them. Our new Post and Telegraph Office suffered most, some of the plaster of the ceiling fell and small cracks are apparent in the walls'.

1902 - The Victorian Royal Commission on handling grain and other produce in bulk or otherwise was established.They were told they had to wash their hands after playing cricket and before handling food stuffs?

1908 - The first Rugby League club in Australia, Newtown, was formed in Sydney.Is squirrel gripping still allowed ?

1909 - Premier of Victoria, Sir Thomas Bent, retired from office, having served 1789 days.While he was Bent by name and Bent by nature, he was often Bent but never broken.

1918 - PM Billy Hughes threw his resignation into the ring after the 2nd conscription referendum told him to take a flying leap and voted "NO"

1920 - Ray Parer and J.C. McIntosh in a DH9 biplane set off to make the first single-engined aircraft flight from England to Australia. These boys and their toys...

1923 - The Rankins Springs Railway Branch line (NSW) was opened.

1930 - Perth, WA received a federal government grant for road-building relief work for 482 unemployed men.Because, of course, governments always hand out money from the goodness of their hearts...don't they?

1931 - The largest Australian gold nugget of the twentieth century was found in Kalgoorlie. 17 year old Jimmie Larcombe in Larkinville near Kalgoorlie while prospecting with his father found the largest nugget Westralia has yet given upWeighing in at a modest 1,136 ounces or 32.2kg the Golden Eagle was found less than half a metre under the soil.

1932 - The Terminus Hotel, Darwin, was demolished. Materials from the demolition were used in the building of the fortification on East Point.

1940 - The Governments of the United States and Australia announced the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations.

1941 - South Australian radio stations 5KA Adelaide and 5AU Port Augusta were closed down by the Post-Master General's Department for alleged 'subversive broadcasts'.
A report to the Director of Naval Intelligence, Melbourne, from the Staff Officer, Intelligence, Port Adelaide, regarding communist activities also stated that the Adelaide group of Jehovah's Witnesses and the radio station 5KA had been under suspicion for some time. It was thought that they were transmitting coded messages to the enemy about ship movements, and also their anti-war stand was seen as bordering on treachery. As a result of the enquiry, together with the fact that the sect had been banned in Canada and New Zealand, the order for the closure of the radio stations was given.

1943 - Arrival in Sydney of chemical weapons stocks on ship “Idomeneus”.

1953 - An agreement was signed giving the go-ahead to develop uranium mining at Rum Jungle, NT.

1958 - Last Australian servicemen return from Korea.At the end of hostilities in Korea the peninsula remained divided between North and South. The war has yet to officially end.

1966 - The Canberra Times published an articledetailing the struggles of Japanese war brides gaining entry into Australia and how Mrs Nobuko"Cherry" Parker was the first to do so in 1952.

1968 - Today saw the last train run from Maldon to Shelbourne, as the line was shortly afterwards damaged by bushfires.

1969 - More than 80 bushfires ravaged Victoria, killing 23 people, including 18 killed in the town of Lara, near Geelong and six people killed in their cars on the Melbourne highway just outside the city while trying to escape the fires. 200 houses were destroyed.

1974 - The Pokatoroo Railway Branch line (NSW) was closed.

1998 - The Melbourne Herald Sun reported that a strange, unidentified creature had washed up on the Tasmanian coast.

2003 - Today saw EIGHTY SEVEN yes, 87 fires started by lightning in the north-east of Victoria; 8 of these fires joined up and formed the largest fire front since Victoria's 1851 Black Thursday fires.
Burning for an incredible 59 days before it was able to be contained the bushfire burnt over 1.3 million hectares, 41 homes and over 9,000 livestock, with thousands of kilometres of fencing also being destroyed.

2008 - Nauru’s foreign minister said Australia's plans to close a much-criticized detention center for asylum seekers on Nauru will devastate its economy.

2010 - Australia angrily condemned an Indian newspaper cartoon likening its police to the Ku Klux Klan over their investigations into the recent murder of a young Indian man. 4 men reportedly poured an unidentified fluid on Jaspreet Singh (29), a man of Indian descent, and set him alight in a suburb of Melbourne, leaving him with 15% burns. Singh was later charged with making a false report to police and criminal damage with a view to gaining financial advantage over the incident, allegedly to make an insurance claim.

2011 - In Australia almost a foot of rain in just a few hours renewed flood fears in the already waterlogged Queensland state, sending a surging river over its banks and into another large town. Some 20 buildings in Maryborough, where about 22,000 people live, were expected to be flooded after the river burst its banks in the overnight downpour.

2012 - The anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd said three Australian activists were being held as "prisoners" by the Japanese harpoon fleet after sneaking aboard one of their vessels overnight to protest. The activists were transferred to an Australian customs vessel on Jan 13.

2014 - Nauru, the tiny Pacific island that hosts a controversial Australian immigration detention centre, was reported to be hiking visa costs for foreign journalists by 40 times, fuelling concerns over secrecy surrounding Australia's asylum seeker policy.

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