Lighthouses of Australia Project - APRIL 00 BULLETIN

VOL 5 No 6
JUNE 2002
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Dear Friends

Features

NSW South Coast Lighthouse Expedition - Montague Island
US Lighthouse Society Tours Australia - Part 2
A Tale of Two Keepers
Radio Interview With Ted and Marjorie Myers of Pine Islet

Letters & Notices

Department of Scrounge

New Pages & Links

New Pages for Australia
New Links for Australia
New Links for World

Australian News

Beacons by the Sea Exhibition
The Pine Islet lighthouse on the Move Again?

Queensland Lighthouse Service 2003 Reunion

Join Lighthouses of Australia Inc

Thanks To

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Dear Friends

Launching LoA Inc into the Real World

I went to the launch of the ANZAC Class Frigate "Ballarat" on Saturday at Williamstown in Melbourne and low and behold Brian Rogers, who spoke at our 2002 Annual Dinner, was there for the occasion. Also, ran into one of the local historians, Cliff Gibson, who has been helping with the Willie Lights.

Spent several days this month going through all the jobs that need to be done and checking them off with the the areas the members have offered to help in. I sent most emails with job details and the response has been pretty good so far. Hopefully some of these will rise up to manage the jobs and the members doing them rather than myself.

What I would like to see now that members are becoming more active is to have members have some sort of informal gathering in each area. Whether this is states or regional I don't know. A morning tea type chat and maybe a visit to a lighthouse or something or even a local address. Here is are some thoughts from Ian Clifford after we discussed it:

I agree with the idea of informal gatherings of members.

Most people who share common interest and passions would enjoy getting together regularily. My opinion is its likely to work best on a regional basis, but should not be limited too.

The advantage of this is that some people who are not so computer oriented can participate.

The challenge we face is taking people from the "oh ar ar I've visited a lovely lighthouse look at my lovely pictures", "buy my nice book" or whatever to actually making a difference to the conservation of our lighthouse heritage.

Have you also considered trying a bulletin board for the members to post current projects etc that they are involved in, for instance Michael Boadle in getting something started locally with restoration of Crookhaven Heads. I wonder if an open chat room from time to time would bring people together?

What are your thought's?

I have seen a few of you do a wonderful job over the years, but for this thing to really have legs I think the general membership has to become activated.

For example a girl from Canberra who has a property down the coast expressed an interest in collecting oral history. I had a similar email from a girl in Sydney. I have now got them talking to one another about taking the project on together.

I am sure I have people who don't realise that someone down the road or in their own town is also a member or subscriber. This means we have a wasted resource that could evolve into a local group. I will soon start introducing people who have nominated the same Home Light to one another or the same area of interest.

Thanks for letting me ramble amd clear my thoughts. I welcome your feedback and suggestions as I think this is the continuing line for Dear Friends for a while.

In addition to a few more changes to the Home Page we now have a new flash page <http://www.lighthouses.org.au/lights/> for when people first go to the main index. Cleaner, faster loading. Check them out and give me your opinion.

Getting lighthouse page reviews underway I think is the next thrust. David Hurburgh helped me with an update with Maatsuyker which is now up.

This Month's Features

NSW South Coast Lighthouse Expedition - Montague IslandRead the second installment of Malcolm and Eds' New South Wales South Coast Lighthouse Expedition when they go out to the Montague Island Lightstation.

US Lighthouse Society Tours Australia - Part 2The US Lighthouse Society Tours Australia - Part 2 sees the conclusion of our American Friends adventure around the scenic South East coast of Australia.

A Tale of Two KeepersA little bit of humour with A Tale of Two Keepers is followed by a radio interview with Ted and Marjorie Myers, ex-keepers of Pine Islet.

This Month's News

<Beacons by the Sea ExhibitionThe National Archives of Australia is holding "Beacons by the Sea" Exhibition in Canberra from September this year. The emphasis of the exhibition is lighthouse life.

The Pine Islet lighthouse on the Move Again?Relocated to Mackay Harbour after being decommissioned. Is the oldest intact kerosene lighthouse, Pine Islet on the move again?

If you were on the Queensland lights then get along to the Queensland Lighthouse Service 2003 Reunion being held at the end of June.

Malcolm Macdonald is the founder and convener of Lighthouses of Australia

Malcolm Macdonald
Bulletin Editor
<keeper@lighthouses.org.au>
[Photograph: Marguerite Stephen]


Features

NSW South Coast Lighthouse Expedition - Montague Island

[Malcolm Macdonald <keeper@lighthouses.org.au> with additions by Ed Kavaliunas <edkav@pipeline.com.au>]

Back on the Road Again

Mid afternoon sees us back on the mainland heading back inland to the Princes Highway, then turning north through one of the most picturesque drives in Australia. The drive takes in the fishing port of Eden, the dairy district of Bega and historic Tilba Tilba.

The last stop is Narooma to find accommodation where we are fortunate to find a vacancy at a caravan park on the edge of the Wagonga Inlet.

Time for a counter-meal at the Narooma Hotel, sitting out the balcony overlooking the Inlet, with Montague Island in the darkness beyond.

Back to the caravan park to throw together some notes on Gabo and retire for an early start to Montague in the morning.

Trip to Montague Lighthouse

The Montague Lightstation. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] The Montague Lightstation.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Standing on the town wharf waiting for our host, Mark Westwood, we watch about 30-40 people from the Latrobe Valley Diving Club preparing to head out on two charter boats to Montague Island, one of the most popular diving destinations in New South Wales. We have doubts that they are aware of Montague's other attraction, the grey granite lighthouse that has stood there for over 120 years.

Just before 8am Mark Westwood arrives and we board the Narooma Sea Charters' boat the "Dreamtime" with one of the dive crews. We have basically hitched a lift to the island while the divers enjoy the subsurface attractions; we have a few hours to have a good look around the lightstation and the island.

Pulling away we don life jackets on to cross the notorious bar at the entrance to Wagonga Inlet, Narooma's harbour. There is about a metre swell and it takes a bit of getting used to. We cover the 8 kilometres to the island standing on the bow of the boat and enjoying the trip.

Approaching the land on Montague Island. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] Approaching the land on Montague Island.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

The skippers nudges the boat up to the landing at Montague and we jump onto it from the boat.

Mark, Ed and myself are met by Andy who like the other rangers resides on and off on the island on about a ten day turnaround (weather permitting!). They occupy the old head lightkeeper's cottage.

The path up to the Montague Lightstation follows the builder's tramway. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] The path up to the Montague Lightstation follows the builder's tramway.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

As we walk up the lightstation and Mark points out that we are on the path of the original tramway where the materials to build the lighthouse were drawn up to the top of the island by horse.

Also along the way are penguin burrows dotted beside the track. Mark stops to open one of the nesting boxes and shows us a female who has nearly completed molting and a male that is just beginning.

Penguins on Montague molting. The female on the left has nearly finished and the male on the right is just begining. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] Penguins on Montague molting. The female on the left has nearly finished and the male on the right is just beginning.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Further up the path are the shearwaters (mutton birds) nests.

Mark points out that each part of the island has it's own bird colony which they fiercely defend.

Arriving at the station we are met again by Andy, who has driven up the hill in one of the island's 'Gators'.

We met Andy again at the top after he has driven the 'Gator' up. [Image: Malcolm Macdonald] We met Andy again at the top after he has driven the 'Gator' up.
[Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

Here we are introduced to another ranger, Dennis who is doing some restoration work on the island.

We head for the tower and ascend. It is only 12 metres and is a much easier climb compared to Gabo the day before.

The tower is made from the local granite on the island and is aesthetically pleasing. The base of the tower is planted straight onto one of the large granite torrs that are a feature of Montague.

The inside of the lantern room had a raw feeling with no lining boards and the modern materials really intrude on its feel.

An array of headlight style beams replaced the original lantern on Montague. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

An array of headlight style beams replaced the original lantern on Montague.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

The view from the Montague tower.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]
The view from the Montague tower. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Like Gabo, the original lens has been replaced, and is now on display at the Narooma Museum. Unlike Gabo, the lantern room is not a huge empty space as the lens was replaced with a large array of headlight style beams.

The view of the island from the balcony shows a broad assortment of buildings, old foundations, a graveyard, derelict stables and vegetable garden, rocks and little inlets.

After descending we wander around the base of the tower and find numerous bolts, plates and intrusions into the rock face, the use of which has passed into history.

Along the base of the torr are some small cement patches in the rock containing handprints, names and dates that go as far back as 1947.

Ed and Mark looking over the wild garden from the flagstaff. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] Ed and Mark looking over the wild garden from the flagstaff.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Over to the nearby flagstaff that is only half it's original height. Below the torr that this stands on is a wild garden. In this Mark discovers a patch of stunted figs growing. Mmm, delicious.

Next is the first assistant keeper's cottage. This solid brick building that like the other cottages is typical of the Barnett era of New South Wales lightstations.

This cottage is used by staff and students at Charles Sturt University for research on the various bird and seal colonies that are a part of the island. Also, off the northern tip of the Island is a colony of grey nurse sharks, a popular diving spot, if you like swimming with sharks that is!

The Montague cottages are typical of the Barnet era. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] The Montague cottages are typical of the Barnet era.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Stop for a quick cup of tea on the verandah looking out over the Tasman Sea, a view you would pay millions for.

Proceed to the second assistant's cottage that has become a museum in the making. It is still being restored, but already you can appreciate the stripped and dressed smoky gum floorboards. Some period furniture is place. Mark says they would like to take it to the stage where the bed is left unmade, as though the keeper had just awoken to tend the light.

One of the few places where we found trees was in the protected area between the Head and the Assistant Keepers' cottages. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] One of the few places where we found trees was in the protected area between the Head and the Assistant Keepers' cottages.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

We wander through the head keeper's cottage which is huge, certainly a difference between this and the assistant quarters.

Despite years of neglect, National Parks and Wildlife who now control the island and the lightstation are putting a lot of time and money into restoring the cottages to near as possible to the late nineteenth century period.

Closed in courtyards are very much a feature of Montague's cottages. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas]
Closed in courtyards are very much a feature of Montague's cottages.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

 

On the east side little alcoves are found on the corners of each verandah for protection from the wind. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas]
On the east side little alcoves are found on the corners of each verandah for protection from the wind.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

From here we hop on the 'Gator' and travel down to the stables. A rough building, the original is now made of modern makeshift materials. It will be demolished at the request of the local aboriginal community as the area is significant to them. Well before the arrival of white man , the aboriginals would paddle out to the island in bark canoes to take advantage of the abundant fishing, mutton birds and seals.

The remains of the keepers' vegetable garden and waterhole. Note the dense weed that has taken over the west side of the island. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] The remains of the keepers' vegetable garden and waterhole.

Note the dense weed that has taken over the west side of the island.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Down the remains of the vegetable garden where what is left of the old well is still visible. There are several man made waterholes on the island with which filled up within hours of being created.

'Gators' are the standard mode of transport on Montague. Mark demostrates his 'hat' assisted driving technique. [Image: Malcolm Macdonald]'Gators' are the standard mode of transport on Montague. Mark demonstrateshis 'hat' assisted driving technique.
[Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

Around the island there is dense weed growth as a result of the early keepers attempts to stabilise sand drifts on the island. The main offender is kikuyu on the west side is followed by buffalo grass on the east side. Creeping dock and a few other offenders are on the island but do not create the same management problems. When we were up the tower you could spot various control patches where different weed eradication procedures are being trialed.

I am sure that if Deb had been with us on this trip Ed and Malcolms' attention would be drawn to this notice on the 'Gator'! [Image: Malcolm Macdonald]I am sure that if Deb had been with us on this trip Ed and Malcolms' attention would be drawn to this notice on the 'Gator'!
[Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

Also, underway is the plan to reintroduce the Coastal Banksia that once covered the island. This will also thin the weeds out and make it easier for the birds to nest on the ground.

Coming back around to the south side of the island a stop at the helipad the east face gives a great aspect to photograph the cottages and tower from.

From here we proceed down to the graveyard where the two graves are those of a keeper and two children of another keeper. Both deaths, a result of the isolation of the island and how hard it was to get help in time.

Dennis attending to one of the two graves on Montague Island. [Image: Ed Kavaliunas] Dennis attending to one of the two graves on Montague Island.
[Image: Ed Kavaliunas]

Keeper Townsend was killed when the horse dragging the stores from the boat up to the station bolted.

The two young Burgess children it seems were struck down by meningitis, a common cause of death at the time.

Also at the cemetery are Dennis and an assistant who are painting the wrought iron fence around keeper Townsend's grave.

The remains of the old landing from the horse drawn days. [Image: Malcolm Macdonald]The remains of the old landing from the horse drawn days.
[Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

Back on the 'Gator' and heading over to the keepers' original landing stage. It is a small wash that gave more protection for the small whaleboats than the main landing. Large rusted bolts still come out of the stonework but all the wood is gone.

It's nearly time to go so we head back to the lightstation to meet up with 2 rangers that are heading back to the mainland.

Arrive at the landing as the dive boat is coming into the landing. Back on the boat it is a smooth ride back. Sitting up on the fly deck I have a bit of a chat with Norm the skipper. Back at the Town Wharf where we meet Darryl, the owner of the boat hire firm. We say good-bye to Mark and before heading off north towards Kiama.

Ed taking a parting shot.
[Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

On the return trip with Norm the skipper on the fly deck.
[Image: Malcolm Macdonald]
On the return trip with Norm the skipper on the fly deck. [Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

Ed taking a parting shot. [Image: Malcolm Macdonald]

US Lighthouse Society Tours Australia - Part 2

[Bob Adams <bush.haven@bigpond>]

Day 9 [Saturday, 9th March] Apollo Bay - Queenscliff - Apollo Bay

The Queenscliff Black Lighthouse. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Queenscliff Black Lighthouse.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Back to Queenscliff to go over the historic Fort Queenscliff; the Black Lighthouse, White Lighthouse, Point Lonsdale Lighthouse and the Maritime Museum.

Apollo Bay overlooks Bass Strait and has a small fishing harbour and a picturesque nine-hole links golf course surrounding the headland.

That night, at the Apollo Bay Golf Clubhouse, Donald Walker was the keynote speaker on the history of lighthouses and shipwrecks along this treacherous section of coastline. He is a noted architectural historian and author of 'Beacons of Hope', the story of the Cape Otway and Cape Wickham Lighthouses.

Members of the Club served us a typical BBQ style meal.

Day 10 [Sunday, 10th March] Shipwreck Coast

Westward along the Great Ocean Road to rugged rock formations known as the Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge and the London Bridge.

This spectacular limestone shoreline has known many shipwrecks, notably the Loch Ard in 1878.

Cape Otway, the oldest mainland lighthouse in Australia. [Image: Bob Adams]
Cape Otway, the oldest mainland lighthouse in Australia.
[Image: Bob Adams]

On the return journey to Apollo Bay the tour inspected the internationally renowned Cape Otway Lighthouse. This heritage light was built in 1848 and today is the oldest 'original' light facility on the Australian Mainland.

The tour of the grounds included visiting the 1859 Telegraph Building.

Day 11 [Monday, 11th March] Apollo Bay - Warrnambool

The tour journey passed the famous London Bridge scene of the dramatic collapse of the main arch at 6pm on 15th January 1990.

The tour then passed the scenic Bay of Martyrs to Warrnambool, with its wonderful Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village, a replica museum built on the lighthouse reserve.

With the Lady Bay Upper and Lower lights it was used as a set for the Tom Selleck movie "Quigley Down-under".

The surrounding district is known for its dairy and seafood produce, with many superb restaurants to please the palate.

Evening meal was a smorgasbord carvery at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Restaurant with accommodation at the Downtown Motel in Warrnambool for two nights.

Day 12 [Tuesday 12th March] Warrnambool - Portland - Warrnambool

A full day's excursion included visiting Tower Hill State Game Reserve and home to many of Australia's native wildlife and birds (nowhere to be seen !!).

The Griffith Island Lighthouse at Port Fairy. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Griffith Island Lighthouse at Port Fairy.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Further on the tour passed through the historic seafaring town of Port Fairy with a tour of its quaint little Griffith Island Lighthouse.

On to the town of Portland and the spectacular Cape Nelson Lighthouse where a guided tour, great lunch and historic presentation took place under the direction of hosts, John and Heather McNeil.

The Cape Nelson Lighthouse lens. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Cape Nelson Lighthouse lens.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Later the last light visited was in the town of Portland at the Whaler's Bluff Light.

 

The Point Lonsdale Lighthouse. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Point Lonsdale Lighthouse.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Point Lonsdale Lighthouse stairs. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Point Lonsdale Lighthouse stairs.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Point Lonsdale Lighthouse Lens. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Point Lonsdale Lighthouse Lens.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Tour members, Susan and Mike at the 12 Apostles. [Image: Bob Adams]
Tour members, Susan and Mike at the 12 Apostles.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Loch Ard Gorge, scene of the famous shipwreck survival. [Image: Bob Adams]
Loch Ard Gorge, scene of the famous shipwreck survival.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The tour host Bob Adams presenting the history of Cape Otway. [Image: Bob Adams]
The tour host Bob Adams presenting the history of Cape Otway.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Cape Otways rugged coastline is not all beer and skittles. [Image: Bob Adams]
Cape Otways rugged coastline is not all beer and skittles.
[Image: Bob Adams]

This image of the bridge collapsing was taken by one of the two people stranded on what became an island. Both fortunate souls were rescued later that night by a local TV Station's helicopter. [Image: Bob Adams]
This image of the bridge collapsing was taken by one of the two people stranded on what became an island. Both fortunate souls were rescued later that night by a local TV Station's helicopter.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Lady Bay Upper Lighthouse at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Lady Bay Upper Lighthouse at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Lady Bay Lower Lighthouse at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Lady Bay Lower Lighthouse at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Day 13 [Wednesday, 13th March] Warrnambool - Ballarat

Left the coast and journeyed inland to the historic gold mining city of Ballarat founded in the gold rush era of the 1850's.

Highlight of this city was a visit to the replica pioneer settlement of Sovereign Hill.

As well, we visited the town's Botanical Gardens to view the begonia flower display.

Accommodation was in the Avenue Motel in Ballarat.

Day - 14 [Thursday, 14th March] Ballarat - Melbourne

The tour is coming to an end with the final stop Melbourne.

Here we visit the famous Victoria Market for final purchases and then a free afternoon and early evening to relax and enjoy the sights of this beautiful garden city.

Norwin and Wanda at the Farewell Dinner in St Kilda. [Image: Bob Adams]
Norwin and Wanda at the Farewell Dinner in St Kilda.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Accommodation was in the Novotel Hotel in St. Kilda with a farewell dinner that evening overlooking the beautiful Port Phillip Bay. Invited guests included committee officials and members of Lighthouses of Australia.

Day - 15 [Friday, 15th March] Melbourne

The tour has ended with departures for USA or journeys elsewhere in Australia.

One final hitch was a communications breakdown at the hotel with a small Airport bus arriving nearly full to take 13 tour members to the Tullamarine International Airport at 7am. Taxis on hand solved the problem.

In Conclusion

A total tour distance of 2,443 kms or 1527 miles travelled between Sydney (NSW) & Portland (VIC.) * Twenty-one Light facilities were either visited or seen during the course of the tour.

The general consensus was that the most enjoyable light visited was Montague Island in New South Wales, with Cape Nelson the best presented light in Victoria. Other highlights were seeing Kangaroos 'in the wild' at the Anglesea Golf Course and Koalas along the Cape Otway Lighthouse Road.

A koala along the Cape Otway Lighthouse Road. [Image: Bob Adams]
A koala along the Cape Otway Lighthouse Road.
[Image: Bob Adams]

US Lighthouse Society President, Wayne Wheeler due to the success of this tour, indicated his interest in a second tour for other members of the Society in late 2003. An itinerary that includes visiting South Australian Lights as well as Victorian and New South Wales facilities is in the planning stage.

The Griffith Island Lighthouse at Port Fairy. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Griffith Island Lighthouse at Port Fairy.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Cape Nelson Lighthouse near Portland. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Cape Nelson Lighthouse near Portland.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The tour group at the Cape Nelson Lighthouse. [Image: Bob Adams]
The tour group at the Cape Nelson Lighthouse.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Tugs in the bay at Portland. [Image: Bob Adams]
Tugs in the bay at Portland.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse at Portland. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Whalers Bluff Lighthouse at Portland.
[Image: Bob Adams]

The Botanical Gardens at historic Ballarat. [Image: Bob Adams]
The Botanical Gardens at historic Ballarat.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Kangaroos at the Anglesea Golf Club. [Image: Bob Adams]
Kangaroos at the Anglesea Golf Club.
[Image: Bob Adams]

Pine Islet Tower before being moved to Mackay Harbour. [Image: Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Society]
Pine Islet Tower before being moved to Mackay Harbour.
[Image: Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Society]

 

A Tale of Two Keepers

[Ian Beasley <ian.beasley@bigpond.com>]

There is the tale of the two lightkeepers who took up their respective posts at around the same time, one at Pine Islet and the other at Dent Island.

At the time these were still kero/mantle, watchkeeping stations and these chaps would talk to each other over the radio between wind-ups and enjoy the odd[s] stubbie.

When the beers were finished they would take it in turns to call "your shout" whereby they would go and fetch a refill.

 

Dent Island in 1963. [Image: David Llewellyn Williams]
Dent Island in 1963.
[Image: David Llewellyn Williams]

This went on for about two years without either actually meeting, just a voice on the Codan.

Then they happened to both in Mackay on leave and had prearranged to meet and one invited the other to an establishment dispensing hospitality where he was known to the staff.

He introduced the other keeper as his best drinking mate however the staff couldn't figure this out when it was revealed that they were indeed meeting for the first time.

Radio Interview With Ted and Marjorie Myers of Pine Islet

[Judy Kelly - ABC Tropical Queensland]

Former lightkeeper, Ted Myers, is a Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Committee member and worked on Pine Islet for 19 years. He and his wife Marjorie lived and raised their family on the island. His whole life at that stage was devoted to keeping the lighthouse alight. To hear a four minute interview with Ted and Marjorie click on the audio link below.

Listen (requires RealAudio) to a four minute interview with former Pine Islet lightkeeper, Ted Myers and his wife Marjorie.


Letters & Notices

Looking for Hugh Sterling Patterson

Dear Sir

The Macquarie Lighthouse.My step father once told me that his mother Eva Macquarie Patterson was born at Macquarie Lighthouse and that her father Hugh Sterling Patterson was the lighthouse keeper.

She was born in 1883. Do you have any record of the lighthousekeepers of the Macquarie Light or do you have any idea how I can find out this information?

Thank you for your help.

Paul Johnson <johnno7@hotkey.net.au>

Looking for Manuel Francis of Montague Island

The Montague Island Lighthouse.Hi

I am after information on the first few lighthouse keepers and their assistants at Montague Island.

I have had some information given to me about my great grandfather Manuel Francis, which the informant thought was the first lighthouse keeper.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Chris Martin <forrestgu@bigpond.com>

Looking for William A Leahy

Dear Malcolm

For your interest my father was the lighthouse keeper on Fitzroy Island, Queensland from 1953 - 1955.

His name is William A Leahy and he lived on the island with my mother (Dinah) and my sisters (Kristine & Susanne) and myself.

As to this date we believe he is the only lighthouse keeper to have died in service.

We would be only too pleased to receive any information you may have regarding my father and at the same time we would be only too happy to help you with any information we may have that will help you in your research.

Regards

Raymond W Leahy <helray7@hotmail.com>

Looking for Albert Outten of Split Point

The Split Point Lighthouse.Hi

We are trying to find where we would be able to get details of lighthouse keepers late 1800s to early 1900s.

I believe my grand father Albert Outten born 1900 was born on the Split Point Lighthouse at Aireys Inlet and lived there for some time.

Would be very interested with any information.

Harold Outten <houtt@tpgi.com.au>

Did This Launch do the Matt Supply Run?

Hi

I have a launch that was thought to be built as a supply vessel for the "Maatsuyker Run" in 1949.

The Maatsuyker Lighthouse.I am looking for some photo's as I am in the process of restoring the vessel.

The current name is "Theme" but I am of the opinion that this may not been it's original
name

The vessel was built by Bruce Dekker of Woodbridge or in that area.

Any information would be appreciated.

Looking forward to your reply

Regards

Michael Fielding <mjfields@southcom.com.au>
PO Box 77
CYGNET Tas

Best Wishes From Cologne

Hi Malcolm,

Thanks for your kindly email and Bulletin. I'm a very great lighthouse fan, but until today I only visited lighthouses in Germany (North and Eastsea), Scotland, France and Hawaii.

By regarding your famous site I could see, that the Australian lighthouses are very beautiful because of their surrounding landscapes and of course because of the buildungs themselves.

They have much flair.

My husband Bruno and I want to make a great Australian Tour next spring and I think we will visit a lot of the lighthouses.

Your famous site will help us planning the trip because there are so many details and descriptions that make me curious.

I hope, my English is understandable for you!

Best wishes from Cologne
Sincerely Yours
Monika Bludau <m.bludau@verw.uni-koeln.de>
Cologne
Germany

Feel free to post any request, letters and notices here regarding research, events etc for any Australian Lighthouse on this notice board.

<keeper@lighthouses.org.au>


Department of Scrounge:

If anybody has any of this material on any Australian lighthouses including the ones listed at the Department of Scrounge it would appreciated, especially the high priority ones:

  • Original Colour Photographs
  • Historical Photographs or Postcards
  • History, experiences and anecdotes
  • Technical History

Please eMail <Keeper>


New Pages & Links

New Pages for Australia:

Volunteers needed to research and write up text for New Pages for Australia

New Links for Australia:

Volunteer needed to help with Links for Australia

Also, New Links for World:

Volunteer needed to help with Links for World

If your e-mail does not display in HTML these pages can be accessed from the "New Listing for Month Index" at <http://www.lighthouses.org.au/lights/New/Index%20New.htm>


Australian News:

Beacons by the Sea Exhibition

[Memento - National Archives of Australia]

Romantic, isolated and intimately linked with Australia' maritime heritage, lighthouse have a strong hold over the imagination of many Australians.

The National Archives of Australia (NAA) are currently developing "Beacons by the Sea: Stories of Australian Lighthouse", an exhibition based on the people who lived and worked in these coastal beacons and the dramatic events that took place around them.

The mail and papers have arrived with the supplies at South Solitary (1946). [Image: Beryl Royal] The mail and papers have arrived with the supplies at South Solitary (1946).
[Image: Beryl Royal]

In the lead up to Federation, lighthouses and maritime issues were vital topics in discussion between the colonies. After 1901, it was agreed to transfer to the new Commonwealth of Australia was the key areas of control maritime navigation though this was not effected until 1915.

Integral to the history of the Commonwealth Government's control of the lighthouses are the keepers and their families. The exhibition will highlight their personal stories and experiences - humorous, exciting and tragic - from manual operation through to automation.

The exhibition will explore shipwrecks associated with lighthouse, different styles and types of lighthouse design, the use of lighthouse during war, women's contribution to the lighthouse service, the lighthouse as a cultural icon, and lighthouse myths.

The lighthouse keepers, Job & Alice Symonds on Breaksea Island in 1890. [Image: Ric McDonald] The lighthouse keepers, Job & Alice Symonds on Breaksea Island in 1890.
[Image: Ric McDonald]

It will draw on the wealth of lighthouse material held in the NAA collection, including keepers' diaries, log books, and exquisite architectural drawings of lighthouse from every state in Australia.

Photographs dating from the 1850s to the 1970s will show everything from family life and schooling in isolated lighthouse to repairing beacons and bringing in supplies. The exhibition will be shown in NAA's Canberra Gallery from September 2002 to January 2003, and from May 2003 it will go on tour around Australia.

The Pine Islet lighthouse on the Move Again?

[Judy Kelly - ABC Tropical Queensland]

The Port of Mackay is the proud home to Australia's oldest kerosene-powered lighthouse.

It is one of only two in tact and functional kerosene lighthouses in Australia, the other being the recently restored Vlaming Head Lighthouse near Exmouth in Western Australia.

Pine Islet Tower before being moved to Mackay Harbour. [Image: Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Society]Pine Islet Tower before being moved to Mackay Harbour.
[Image: Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Society]

The Pine Islet lighthouse is one of eight typical Queensland iron clad hardwood towers of the late nineteenth century.

After 104 years of service, it was retired from Pine Islet, and moved to the mainland.

It was completely dismantled piece by piece and then restored to its original glory.

Walking through the lighthouse, remnants from its previous life on the island, Such as empty kerosene bottles are scattered throughout. Even though modern technology made many lighthouses redundant, they were a vital defence against shipwrecks along Australia's 37,000 kilometres of coastline over the last 200 years.

Pine Islet Tower after being moved to Mackay Harbour. Is it on the move again?. [Image: Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Society]Pine Islet Tower after being moved to Mackay Harbour. Is it on the move again?
[Image: Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Society]

Plans are now underway to move the lighthouse again, much to the concern of Ted Myers of the Pine Islet Lighthouse Preservation Committee.

While the lighthouse's final destination has not yet been confirmed, committee members are anxiously awaiting the decision. The original lamp was an oil wick burner that ran on whale or vegetable oil and is still in working order today. Lighthouse enthusiasts are hoping that when it's moved it may be opened for tourists, but in the meantime, it's sitting there waiting for its fate to be determined.>.

Queensland Lighthouse Service 2003 Reunion

Memories of The Queensland Lighthouse Service [Photographs: Stuart Buchanan]Its on again, the Queensland Lighthouse Service 2003 re-union.

Former employees, their families and descendants are invited to a reunion to be held on the 29th June 2001 to celebrate the Commonwealth Lighthouse Service's 87th birthday.

Bob Todkill said:

"We hope to get as many of the people who were associated with the Service back together as possible. It has been hard work as many have moved on to other occupations, retired and gone travelling an we have lost contact. Others have passed on and we have lost track of their children, many who were born and raised in the stations. At the moment we have about 120 coming."

He also said that if anyone has any memorabilia that can be made available for display he would be appreciative if they could have a loan of it.

The venue is the same as last year; the Brisbane 18 Foot Sailing Club in Bulimba, Brisbane. The cost is $20 and a light lunch is included.

If you have a connection with the service and would like to attend contact:

Bob Todkill <pamles-bobbie@powerup.com.au>
(07) 3399 6922
Mob 0427 646 337
166 Brisbane Street
Bulimba 4171

Jack Duvoisin <johnd@gil.com.au>
(07) 3396 8559

before the 16th June 2001.

If you know of any news or event effecting an Australian Lighthouse please forward it to us so we can publish in the Monthly Bulletin.


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Thankyou


    Thanks to the Following People for Their Help in May:

    Alan Minch (Page Registrations)
    Christian Bell (Contact List)
    Ron Campbell (Contact List)
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    Maria Grist (Photograph)
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    Ian Yarde (Page Registrations)
    Kelly Casey (Contact List)
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    Ben Hawke (Contact List)

    Thanks to all the people who have put links to the site

    Thanks to those who let me use their photos for thumbnails.


    Regards until the July 2002 Bulletin
    Malcolm Macdonald

    http://www.lighthouses.org.au/lights/


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The JUNE 02 BULLETIN was published on: 3/06/02

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Lighthouses of Australia Web Site First Published: 3/12/97

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