A while ago, when I was visiting my parents, my mother recreated a potent and delicious cocktail often made by Kathleen, her mother-in-law, often enough anyway not to require being written down.
My parents remember it as gin, dry vermouth, and sweet vermouth, in proportions of 3:2:1 with a dash of lime juice cordial.
In the late nineteenth century a martini was made with equal proportions of gin and vermouth, for example an 1888 Johnson’s Bartenders’ Manual listed a recipe for a “Martini Cocktail” that consisted in part of half a wine glass of Old Tom gin and a half a wine glass of vermouth. By the 1920s this had become two parts gin to one part vermouth. Kathleen’s cocktail was made in the earlier proportions. Today the less vermouth, the drier the Martini.
A so-called “Perfect” cocktail is a drink that includes equal parts of sweet and dry vermouth, so a Perfect Martini is a variant of the classic Martini which adds sweet vermouth to the original cocktail’s gin and dry vermouth.
Kathleen’s cocktail was similar, with a slight variation on the proportions of the sweet and dry vermouths.
In 1863 my third great grandmother Margaret Rankin, formerly Margaret Budge nee Gunn, died at ‘Bookmark‘, a sheep-station on the Murray River near present-day Renmark.
Margaret had arrived in South Australia from Liverpool on the ‘Dirigo‘ in November 1854 with her second husband Ewan Rankin and four surviving children from her first marriage. In Wick on 10 June 1854, five weeks before they sailed on 15 July, she had married Ewan Rankin, a carpenter.
When the Rankin family arrived the two boys, Daniel and Kenneth, were 12 and 11, and the two daughters, Margaret and Alexandrina, were 9 and 2. I do not know where the family settled nor how Ewan Rankin was employed from the time of their arrival until Margaret’s death nearly ten years later. It appears, however, that Ewan Rankin had found work on a large property called ‘Bookmark‘ on the Murray River near present-day Renmark.
In the early 1860s ‘Bookmark‘ and the neighbouring station, ‘Chowilla‘, were leased by two men named James Chambers and William Finke. Chambers died in 1862 and his brother John Chambers took over. Finke died in early 1864. At that time Ewan Rankin seems to have been the ‘Bookmark‘ overseer.
In 1864 a man named Richard Holland bought the ‘Bookmark‘ station lease for his stepsons John, William, and Robert Robertson. The run extended from Spring Cart Gully near Berri to the NSW border. I do not know if Ewan Rankin stayed with the property or moved on; I have not found any reference to him after 1863.
In 1867, four years after her mother Margaret died, Margaret Budge, now 21, married James Francis Cudmore of ‘Paringa‘, a neighbouring station on the Murray, 20 miles upstream from ‘Bookmark‘.
In the 1870s Daniel and Kenneth Budge worked for the Cudmores and went into partnership with them. In 1870 Kenneth purchased ‘Gooyea‘ station in Queensland with J F Cudmore. In October 1871 the Adelaide “Evening Journal” reported that “A lot of 600 cows with 16 bulls, from Mr Cudmore’s Paringa Station, in charge of Mr. K. Budge, passed through Wilcannia on the 12th for Dowling’s Creek, Bulla, Queensland.”
In the 1860s paddle steamers carried a great amount of goods, much of it wool, up and down the Darling and Murray rivers. Two dangers were boiler explosions and collision with submerged logs, snags. In 1862 the ‘Settler‘ hit a snag near ‘Bookmark‘ and sank:
"In coming up the river near Bookmark Station she came in collision with a large snag some two feet under water, which made such a large hole in her below watermark that she had to run ashore immediately, when she sunk, and now lies with the water up to the floor of her cabins. She had some 200 tons of cargo onboard, the greater portion of which was for settlers and storekeepers on the river, and they will consequently be put to considerable inconvenience, in addition to the loss attending the accident. The steamer 'Lady Daly' is lying alongside the 'Settler' to render any assistance that may be necessary."
In 1865 the landing place at Bookmark station was cleared of 9 trees from the water by Edward Williams, superintendent of the Snagboat ‘Grappler‘, employed in the service of the Commissioner of Public Works.
In 1880 a correspondent of the “Kapunda Herald“, on a trip aboard the steamer ‘Gem‘ up to Wentworth, reported that “On the way down we had the chance of seeing Mr. J. F. Cudmore’s Paringa Station. It is a very pretty house built on a hill, with a fine garden terraced down the slope to the river, and from the steamer looks a grand residence. Farther down is Messrs. Robertson Brother’s Bookmark Station, which is a very nice looking building.”
In 1881 Mr G.E.M. [a Melbourne University student who wrote for the Melbourne Leader] on a trip down the Murray by canoe, coming around a bend,
“… to my astonishment, came suddenly in view of a well built residence, occupying a very elevated position off the left bank. Four tanks were near it on a lofty staging. The steam-engine was on a ledge lower down. A beautiful garden was round the house, and the flat ground below it was occupied by a number of outbuildings. My surprise was great to find that I was at Paringa, more so that it was only half-past three. The manager, Mr. Hayes, looked after me well. Paringa station belongs to Mr. Cudmore of Adelaide, and is his home for six months of the year. It runs 20,000 sheep, only a third of the number on Chowilla. I had a good night's rest, and, rising early, made my preparations before breakfast. At half-past eight I was proceeding onwards. At half-past twelve I was knocking at the door at Bookmark. The 21 miles between the two places did not offer much variety. Near Cutler's billabong I saw far ahead a man slowly propelling his boat, and having overtaken him, learnt that he was a carpenter by trade, who, finding work slack in Wentworth, had patched up an old furniture case to form a boat, and taking a few tools, had started off down the river to seek work. Instead of sculling in the ordinary way, he looked to the bows and pushed his sculls through the water. I was amused, on asking him the time, with the startling vehemence of his reply, "God knows." His boat crept along so slowly that I wished him good morning and paddled on. From Paringa can be seen a range of hills trending towards the Murray. They do not, however, come to the river, but form a precipitous bank for the Margary Creek, which flows into the Murray a mile above Bookmark. The station house is in a striking position, of which it is worthy, for a more elegantly furnished dwelling I have rarely seen. Despite my peculiar appearance, Mrs. Robertson extended to me a cordial welcome, and in the afternoon Mr. Robertson came home. All the wood work in this house and a great part of the cabinet work is the result of Mr. Robertson's own labor. In the evening we fished, using shrimps for bait, and caught in a short time a nice basket of bream. Music enlivened us till bedtime. The following day was delightfully spent. In the morning we drove to the back country, to try for a shot at a kangaroo. As we drove along I had many of the trees and shrubs pointed out to me. "This fragile gum tree," said he, " is the mallee, the Eucalyptus Dumosa ; that prickly bush, whose roots when cut yield fresh water, is the needle bush ; there is the sandalwood, there the box. This stunted shrub, interspersed with spinifex, is a kind of saltbush ; that dark-tinted tree is the native cherry ; that, very like it in appearance, is the bitter bush; yonder is the curious quandong, easily picked out by reason of its light-green foliage." The kangaroos sleep during the heat of the day under shelter of the pines. We disturbed many, but my execrable shooting invariably resulted in their hopping off scathless. In the evening, while fishing, I was sitting beside Mr. Robertson, watching my float, when he said quietly, "Look here," motioning towards a snake which had swum the river and landed at his feet. A well aimed blow killed the first and last snake I saw in my whole trip. It was the common brown snake, 4 feet 6 inches long. On the 15th. January, with great regret, I left Bookmark. Three miles from the house the Spring Cart Cliffs begin, and extend for a long distance, gradually diminishing in height.”
In 1887 the South Australian Government granted the Chaffey Brothers 30,000 acres from Bookmark station to begin Renmark, the first irrigation colony in Australia. In 1896 Bookmark station was divided into Calperum and Chowilla Stations; John and Robert Robertson dissolved their partnership, John retained Bookmark, and changed the name to Calperum, and Robert settled at Chowilla.
Now heritage listed, the homestead at what was Bookmark is on Calperum station. The present building, dating from the 1870s, replaces an earlier construction of pug and pine, which for walls used native pine trunks rendered with clay. This building technique was frequently employed in country South Australia, especially when there were not enough large trees to provide bark or slabs. In the early 1860s the Rankin family were probably living in buildings of pug and pine construction. In 1984 a pug and pine outbuilding built in 1863 on Chowilla was reported in a heritage study to be one of the oldest surviving structures in the upper Riverlands.
In 2015 the Robertson family celebrated 150 years on “Chowilla”, formerly part of Bookmark, which is now 35,200ha (87,000ac) and consists of mostly semi-arid rangeland featuring saltbush, blue bush, copper burr and native grasses. The Robertsons farm 132,000 hectares (327,000 acres) spread across four properties. Depending on the season the Robertsons shear 15,000 to 17,000 head of sheep.
Some years ago, one of my Cudmore cousins told me about a legal provision that had been made for two illegitimate children of our forbear James Frances Cudmore (1837 – 1912).
On 24 August 1912, a week after J.F. Cudmore’s death, a woman named Isabella Crowe of Nailsworth South Australia signed an indenture—a legally binding contract—in which she and her one male child and one female child, “alleged to have been fathered” by him, with their present and future descendants, agreed to make no claims on his estate in return for 300 shares in the Federal Coke Company Ltd. (In September 1912 shares in Federal Coke were being sold for 32/6; 300 shares on that basis would be worth about $61,000 today.)
The original of this indenture is held in the Mortlock Library, a wing of the State Library of South Australia. The signature of Isabella Crowe was witnessed by J.K. Cudmore (J.F. Cudmore’s eldest son). He also witnessed Isabella’s signature on a receipt for the shares, which appears on the same document, with the same date. The name “Isabella Crowe” appears several times in the document, always in the same handwriting, which is different from the handwriting on the rest of the document.
My cousin believes that the indenture was drafted in secret while J.F. Cudmore was still alive. J.K. Cudmore, it appears, had instructions to put it into effect when his father died.
Who was Isabella Crowe? I am not sure. I have found the birth of an Isabella Crowe in 1871 in Robe, South Australia, the third of six children of Henry Crowe and his first wife Harriet nee Barnes. Harriet died in 1878. Henry remarried and died in 1904. His second wife died 1897 leaving two children. In November 1891 a Isabella Crowe, aged 21, a servant, religion Wesleyan, living in Norwood, was admitted to the Adelaide Hospital.
I have found no other mention of Isabella, and no marriage or death records. (I had previously identified two children, Constance and Herbert Crowe born 1895 and 1896, as possibly the children of Isabella. The details in the Register of infants born in the Destitute Asylum for these two children indicate they are not the children of Isabella Crowe and J. F. Cudmore.)
I have only a few Quakers in my family tree. One was Jane Sarah Russell nee Cashell (1791 – 1879), my fourth great grandmother, a capable and determined woman who separated from her first husband and, after his death, married a fellow Friend.
Her first marriage was to Patrick Cudmore (c. 1778 – 1827). She was his second wife. By his first he had a son, William Christopher, born in Ballyclough in 1798. Jane nee Cashell and Patrick Cudmore had two children, Milo Clanchy (1808 – 1900) and Daniel Michael Paul (1811 – 1891), both born at Tory Hill, County Limerick.
In about 1822 at the time Patrick Cudmore and Jane Sarah separated, Patrick went to live with his son William at Manister, County Limerick. He died there in 1827. His death was announced in theLimerick Chronicle of 10 March 1827: “On Thursday, at Manister Lodge, County Limerick, Patrick Cudmore Esq. aged 47.”
Jane Sarah was living in Cork. She seems to have made her first formal request to join a Quaker meeting – the group is properly called the Religious Society of Friends – on 2 August 1822. On 10 July 1823 a meeting in Cork considered a letter from Jane Sarah Cudmore requesting admission. She had been under care for several months; prospective Quakers put themselves ‘under care’ of a Quaker meeting and were expected to follow the guidance and advice of established members.
Around this time, perhaps to improve their prospects, Jane Sarah found places in Quaker homes in England for her sons Milo and Daniel. Between 1822 and 1828 Milo was apprenticed to Levitt Edwards, a baker and flour dealer of High Street, Chelmsford, Essex. He boarded with the Edwards family. Daniel was placed with a relative of the Edwards family named Mary Levitt and her husband William Impey at Earles Colne, a village north-west of Chelmsford. While they were in England the boys saw each other occasionally. In 1830 they returned home to Limerick.
Henry Russell of Dublin son of Nathaniel Russell of Moate in the County West Meath, and Elizth his wife; and Jane Sarah Cudmore widow of the late Patrick Cudmore of Manister in the County Limerick, & daughter of Francis Russell of the city of Limerick and Sarah his wife, both deceased, have appeared in this meeting, and declared their intention of taking each other in marriage and severally that they are clear of all others in this respect; the young man having his parents consent in writing by two friends also a minute from the mo: meeting of Dublin signifying his being a member of our Society this meeting accepts their presentation and appoints Susanna Lickey and Hanh Newsom to have the necessary care of any matter which may arise in the case and report to our next meeting and Hanh Newsom to accompany them to the men’s meeting to wh we refer them.
Report is made that the publication of the intention of marriage between Henry Russell & Jane Sarah Cudmore was made in our meeting for worship on two first day mornings & that nothing had arisen to prevent their proceeding; the Women’s Meeting has also informed that no obstruction has arisen with them, & a letter has been received & read from two friends on behalf of Dublin Mo Meeting, informing that due publication had been made there, & that nothing has arisen to obstruct: this Meeting therefore leaves the said parties at liberty to prosecute their said Intention & appoints John Newsom to see the orderly accomplishment of the Marriage.
Report is made that the Marriage of Henry Russell with Jane Sarah Cudmore was accomplished in an orderly manner in our Meeting for Worship on the 18 of last month: two Certificates for Registry thereof have been handed in, one of which the Registrar is desired to record, the other the Clerk is to forward to the Quarterly Meeting.
Jane Sarah Russell (late Cudmore) having on her Marriage with Henry Russell of Dublin, which took place on the 18 of 9 month last, removed into the compass of Dublin Mo Meeting, the Clerk is desired to communicate that information to said M Meeting, by sending thereto an authenticated copy of this minute.
Henry and Jane Sarah Russell had two children Elizabeth born 1829 and Henry Cashell born 1831. Both children were brought up as Quakers, both emigrated to America and died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Elizabeth died in 1896 and Henry in 1919.
Between 1649 – 1653 the forces of the English Parliament, led by Oliver Cromwell, invaded Ireland. In charge of a regiment raised in Kent from April 1649 was a Colonel Robert Phaire. Phaire had formed his regiment from volunteers who had opposed the Royalists in 1648 who were now being disbanded.
Phaire was a Regicide, one of the three officers to whom the 1649 warrant for the execution of Charles I was addressed. However, he refused to sign the order to the executioners. For this he was arrested but not tried, and released in 1662. It has been suggested Phaire escaped severe punishment at the Restoration by having married the daughter of Sir Thomas Herbert.
One of my tenth great grandfathers Paul Cudmore (abt 1614 – abt 1700) was a lawyer who came to Ireland with Cromwell’s army in the regiment of Colonel Phaire. Paul’s future father-in-law, Captain Michael Gale (died 1681), one of my 11th great grandfathers, was a member of the same regiment.
In 1663 Paul Cudmore and Michael Gale were implicated in a plot to overthrow the new King. Cudmore and Gale were named in a deposition sent on 26 June 1663 by Roger Boyle, 1st Earl of Orrery to King Charles II informing the King of a plot to overthrow the government.
Orrery wrote, “The four mentioned in his enclosed deposition were officers who served under Phaier.” Orrery imprisoned Paul Cudmore, Gale, the two other men, and Colonel Phaire. The deposition stated :
On a Sabbath day in the afternoon about the end of April last, deponent met Mr. Samuel Corbett, who told deponent that Captain Michael Gale wished to speak to him. Deponent was asked to meet Gale, Captain John Taylor, Paul Cudmore and Corbett at the Stone- house beyond the bridge of Carrigeline [Carrigalinel], in the barony of Kirricarry [Kerricurihy] , co. Cork, on the next Wednesday.
Although the Earl of Orrery referred to Paul Cudmore as an army officer under Phaire, only two of the men he named were given an army rank. I think it is likely that Cudmore served Phaire in an administrative rather than a military role.
Paul Cudmore practiced as a solicitor and in the 1680s served in that capacity to Colonel Phaire at the time of his death in 1682.
Cudmore married Anne Gale in 1655 becoming the son-in-law of Captain Michael Gale.
There are several bridges. One to the west of Carrigaline, called the Ballea bridge, leads to Ballea castle, possibly the stone house referred to in the 1663 deposition. The present Ballea castle was built around 1660.
On Thursday 9 February the weather was warm reaching 37 degrees (98 degrees Fahrenheit). We took a two hour paddle steamer ride on the Murray through lock 11 and downstream.
We admired the Murray River Flag which dates from the early 1850s; there are three variations. Our paddlesteamer flew the Upper Murray River Flag with the darker blue bands on its flag, representing the darker waters of the river’s upper reaches. At lock 11 we saw the Combined Murray River Flag.
In the evening we visited a local distillery and after sampling several types we purchased a gin infused with saltbush.
The next day Friday 12 February we drove to South Australia. Because of the pandemic we needed to apply for permits to enter South Australia and also to return to Victoria.
The Sturt Highway passes along the boundary of Ned’s Corner, a property once owned by the Cudmores. Ned’s Corner Station is now owned by the Trust for Nature who bought the property in 2002 when it was very degraded from drought and overgrazing. The Trust claims the 30,000 hectare property (74,000 acres) is the largest freehold property in Victoria and also the biggest private conservation reserve in the state.
My great great grandfather James Francis Cudmore (1837 – 1908) managed Paringa, 208 sq. miles (531 km²) near present day Renmark from 1857. Paringa was first leased by James’s father Daniel from 1850 as well as a number of other stations. In 1860 James Cudmore leased Ned’s Corner, further up the Murray. From these properties he overlanded sheep to Queensland and took up leases there. In1867 he married Margaret Budge. James and Margaret had 13 children; my grandfather Arthur Murray Cudmore was their third child born at Paringa in 1870.
In 1876 James Cudmore enlarged Ned’s Corner in partnership with Robert Barr Smith and A. H. Pegler. By the end of the 1870s 130,000 sheep were being shorn at his stations on the Murray.
James Mansfield Niall (1860-1941), a first cousin to James Francis Cudmore, worked at Paringa Station as a young man before moving to central western Queensland. His great grandson has been kind enough to share some of James Niall’s reminiscences.
In 1876 I went up to Paringa Station on the Murray, and took a position there as bookkeeper. I had to travel by train to Kapunda, thence by coach to Blanchtown, Overland Corner, to Ral Ral. We travelled most of the night and all day for some 3 days. The coachdriver on the later stages was a man named Lambert. Lambert had been fined the previous week for over-carrying the Paringa mailbag, and when he learned I was going to the Station he did not hesitate to abuse me at every opportunity. I was practically only a schoolboy, and I put up with it until we got to Ral Ral, where a blackfellow met me leading a horse on which I was to ride out to the Station. Lambert on seeing the horse flogged it with his whip, upon which I told him that I had had enough of it, and that he could give me a hiding, or I would give him one. (Other passengers on the coach were John Crozier – late of St Albans near Geelong – Fred Cornwallis West, and Dr Wilson of Wentworth). Lambert and I had a fairly lengthy fight, and I beat him very badly, although he broke my nose, from which I am suffering even today. John Crozier enjoyed himself immensely watching the fight from the box of the coach, calling out ”Go it young un”, a term with which he always greeted me when I met him in the Streets of Melbourne 40 years afterwards. Dr Wilson patched up my nose. We had travelled most of the night in the Coach without meals, I only had sixpence in my pocket, and I hadn’t the effrontery or courage to ask the shanty-keeper at Ral Ral to give me a meal without paying for it, so I bought the nigger a nip of rum with the 6d and rode out to the Station. There I remained for probably 18 months, when in 1878 Mr Kenneth Budge (who was manager of Gooyea Station in Queensland) died suddenly from heart disease getting out of bed, and my first cousin, J F Cudmore, on whose Station I was working, hurried me off to Queensland, without notice, to go up and take control.
My interest in visiting Olivewood was to see the plaque from the grave of my 3rd great grandmother Margaret Rankin nee Gunn (1819 – 1863). The plaque had been stolen from the grave but was found in 1994 and is now cared for by the National Trust at Olivewood. Margaret’s husband Ewan Rankin was an overseer at Bookmark station – the station no longer exists as it is under present-day Renmark.
There is a link between Olivewood and Paringa as while George Chaffey was siting for Olivewood to be built he stayed at Paringa House, the Cudmore home. There was a painting of the house at Olivewood.
My great grandfather Arthur Murray Cudmore was born 11 June 1870. Later that year there were enormous floods and the old house was destroyed. The present house was built after the flood. The 1870 flood was measured at 11.65 metres (38 feet) at Mildura but was a very slow flood. In September the flood had reached the verandah at Mildura Station.
We paused for afternoon tea at Paringa and drove back.
On the way to Mildura we received news of another lockdown for the whole of the state of Victoria due to the pandemic. We made the decision to return home that evening. We were only cutting our holiday short by one night and the restrictions were that most businesses were to be shut and you could not travel further than five kilometres from home. We did not wish to experience the lockdown in Mildura. So we packed our bags and headed south stopping for dinner in Birchip. We were fortunate to have a holiday between lockdowns.
Greg and I took our first holiday in a year to Mildura to visit some family history places nearby. A combination of illness and various lockdowns due to the Covid pandemic had prevented any travelling away from home overnight in the last twelve months. We decided to take the opportunity of some free time to meet with a cousin and see some of the places we had only read about.
Tuesday 9 February we drove north to Mildura via Warracknabeal. We travelled through the Wimmera region and the scenery matched that captured in the recent film ‘The Dry’ which I had seen only a few weeks ago.
We had a terrific lunch at Warracknabeal at The Creekside Hotel in a very nice beer garden beside the Yarriambiack Creek. The hotel’s staff were very Covid-conscientious with masks, check in, sanitiser, and ordering lunch via an online webpage retrieved by a QR code; we even managed to order a jug of iced water and 3 glasses for the table, free, through this page.
Yarriambiack Creek was fairly full and attractive to look at. There was a park across the creek with some cages of birds and an enclosure of kangaroos.
Our trip north continued with more silos and a stop in Ouyen. Ouyen had been famous for its vanilla slices having hosted a competition from 1998 to 2011 initiated by Jeff Kennett, the then premier of Victoria. Kennett acted as guest judge until 2005. In 2011 volunteers relinquished the competition to another small town. This afternoon the bakery and many other shops were closed and there were no vanilla slices to be bought.
Wednesday 10 February we visited the Australian Inland Botanic Gardens just across the Murray River in New South Wales and also the confluence of the Murray and Darling Rivers at Wentworth. When we visited the confluence last in 2010 you could see the muddy Darling joining the clearer Murray. This time the two rivers were a similar colour.
On Wednesday afternoon we visited Avoca Station and met one of my fourth cousins, AL, and her mother, JA, my third cousin once removed. JA’s grandfather (AL’s great grandfather), George Agars (1864 – 1943) was the son of Margaret Alice Agars nee Cudmore (1842 – 1871) and grandson of Daniel Michael Paul Cudmore (1811 – 1891) and Mary Cudmore nee Nihill (1811 – 1893).
George’s mother Margaret died in 1871 at 29 from an ear infection. George was brought up by his grandparents Daniel and Mary Cudmore. He was educated in Adelaide to become an accountant for his Uncle Dan at Avoca Station. George later became an irrigation pioneer in Mildura when the Chaffey Brothers arrived from Canada. My cousin commented “He did not do that well on the land and should have followed his dream of being a writer and poet.”
The property was established on the west bank of the Darling River in 1871 by Daniel Henry Cashel Cudmore (1844 – 1913), the fifth of nine children of Daniel Michael Paul and Mary Cudmore. Daniel H purchased the western half of Tapio Station on the Darling from Messrs. Menzies and Douglas, and named it Avoca, said to be after his father’s hometown in Ireland; however Daniel Michael Paul Cudmore was born in Tory Hill, Limerick near Adare, 230 km west of Avoca.
Avoca Station had frontages of ten miles (16 km) to the Murray and twenty-five miles (40 km) to the Darling. Other properties in the area were acquired and in 1885 Daniel Henry and two of his brothers, Milo Robert (1852 – 1913) and Arthur Frederick (1854 – 1919), managed 709,000 acres including Avoca and Popiltah Station to the north of Avoca. 120,000 sheep were shorn at Avoca in 1888 with new Wolseley shearing machines. The wool clip was transported by paddle steamer from the woolshed downstream via the Darling River to the Murray River. Daniel Henry retired in 1895 to Victor Harbour. Avoca Station was sold in 1911.
The homestead was built in two stages. In 1871 the first stage was constructed of cypress pine drop logs. Many of the outbuildings are believed to have also been built at this time. In 1879 a second stage stone wing of the homestead was added.
I have previously written about Ernest Osmond Cudmore (1894 – 1924). He was the second of four sons of Milo Robert Cudmore and a cousin of my great grandfather Arthur Murray Cudmore. In 1908 Ernest was holidaying at Avoca when he jumped from a horse as he feared he was about to collide with a portion of the stable. He broke his leg and it was badly shattered; the bone did not set and his leg had to be amputated below the knee.
Sara Kathleen de Lacy Roberts (nee Cudmore) (1883 – 1972), the daughter of Arthur Frederick Cudmore, was another cousin of my great grandfather Arthur Murray Cudmore. In 1971 Kathleen Roberts was interviewed by a granddaughter of Milo Robert Cudmore, Helen Bewsher nee Cudmore (1928 – 2001). Kathleen lived at Avoca as a teenager and young adult from 1895 until her marriage in 1909. She was educated at boarding school in Melbourne and travelled to and from school via train and the paddle steamer, Trafalgar. Her recollections of Avoca, when she was 88 years old in 1971, were as follows:
One cook, one housemaid, one nurse at Popiltah. No Aborigines in the house at Popiltah, one at Avoca. A camp of 30 as stockmen.
The Avoca vegetable garden was on the river. A huge steam engine, between the vegetable and flower gardens, pumped river water to them. In the hot weather this was done at night and made a terrible noise. A Chinaman worked full time on these gardens and would come to the kitchen door every morning to enquire on what vegetables were required that day. All the linen was made at Avoca, the girls spending their time sewing, making visitors’ beds and preserving.
Staff of 10 men at Avoca, jackaroo and overseer.
Bred horses there – had about 100. Every second year, one of the men spent two or three months breaking in – always gently.
reminiscence of Kathleen Roberts nee Cudmore
Ian and Barb Law, the present owners of Avoca, gave us afternoon tea and showed us around the property. It was delightful to meet them and our cousins too.
My grandmother Kathleen Cavenagh Cudmore was born 27 June 1908, 112 years ago today. She was the second daughter and second child of Arthur Murray Cudmore (1870-1951) and his wife Kathleen Mary née Cavenagh-Mainwaring (1874-1951).
Kathleen was always most attached to her father, who was a considerable sportsman: he played Australian football as a young man at league club level, his family background made him a good horseman and a good shot, and he was a talented golfer. Kathleen played golf from an early age, rode horses in competition, and also learnt fencing and played hockey. She remarked in a later interview that when she was young she would often play golf in the morning and go riding in the afternoon – or riding in the morning and golf in the afternoon. … She played regularly with the professional, Willie Harvey, at Royal Adelaide Golf Club.
I have another small connection with Hendon. On 24 July 1801 one of my fourth great grandmothers, Ann Plaisted née Green (1801 – 1882), daughter of Charles Green and Sarah Green née Young, was baptised at St Mary’s Church there.
Hendon aerodrome is now the site of the Royal Air Force Museum seven miles north-west of London city and marked with an x
Further down the page there was a discussion of plans for a Victory Ball to be held two months off, on 5 June, with a dance for juveniles on the following night. The proceeds were to be in aid of the Cheer-Up Society, an organisation for the aid and comfort of Australian soldiers passing through Adelaide. My great grandmother Mrs A.M. Cudmore, who was on the executive committee, keenly supported this effort on behalf of returned men.
Depicted in the sketch … is the elegant gown worn by the Mayoress at Government House on the occasion of Admiral Viscount Jellicoe’s visit, also at the Victory Ball on Thursday. This frock is composed of supple black satin, with an overdress of tulle, weighted by steel and gold embroidery. The corsage permits a peep of gold tissue between the less diaphonous fabrics with what is at hand. A short length of widish insertion, rather open and bold in design, can be turned to endless account.
1919 Adelaide: Guests attending a ball (not specified), possibly for debutantes in a hall decorated with garlands of flowers in Adelaide. Image retrieved from the State Library of South Australia PRG-280-1-29-65 and subsequently colorised using the MyHeritage photo colorizing tool.
The influenza epidemic, it seems, had little effect on Adelaide social life.
15,000 people died in Australia from the 1918-19 pandemic out of a population of 5 million. 40 per cent of Australia’s population was infected by the influenza but its subsequent death rate of 2.7 per cent per 1,000 members of the population was the lowest recorded of any country during the pandemic. Worldwide 50 to 100 million people died. The first Australian case was recorded in January 1919 in Melbourne,
Victoria. The virus spread to New South Wales and South Australia, with these States closing their borders to limit the spread of the virus.
Travellers from South Australia to Melbourne were not allowed to return home to South Australia. Quarantine was offered in association with soldiers who were being quarantined on Kangaroo Island and in two other camps. Eventually several hundred travellers from Adelaide were allowed to travel back to Adelaide on heavily guarded trains having signed declarations that they had taken every precaution not to be exposed. A quarantine camp was set up on Jubilee Oval next to the Torrens River. There were 100 military tents and more accommodation was set up in the adjacent Machinery Hall. About 640 people who had been visiting Victoria and elsewhere were quarantined at the site.
It was said that many people quarantined at Jubilee Oval treated the experience as an extended holiday and, cleared of the infection, were reluctant to leave.
Below the well-advertised cheerfulness, however, was an ugly truth. The Spanish flu was extremely dangerous. In South Australia 540 people died of the flu, the equivalent in today’s population of 15,000. No Australians have yet died of COVID-19.
Exhibition Building, North Terrace, Adelaide about 1900. The Jubilee Exhibition Building was just north of the camp and was turned into an isolation hospital. [State Library South Australia image B 1606] (The building was demolished in 1962)