Some of you, especially the cycling fans amongst us, will know that Tea Tree Gully is hosting one of the key stages of Tea Tree Gully next year. Cycling has a rich history in Tea Tree Gully, did you know that one of the first competitive races in South Australia ended at Modbury? Did you know that Tea Tree Plaza car park was the scene of organised races in the 1970s?
We are developing a display in the Library foyer in the lead up to the event based on the cycling history of the region called ’Life with your bike’ – a collection of photographs of people who live, work or play in the City of Tea Tree Gully with their bike. Do you have a photo or yourself with your first bike? Or perhaps out with your family? Maybe you raced BMX in the 80′s? A short story to accompany your photo would be great! We will copy the images and return the originals to you.
If you can help with our display please email David our Local Historian.
Anstey ponders the justness of the British invasion of Zululand while researching his namesake.
The Local History office recently fielded a question by a member of the Tea Tree Gully and Districts Historical Society. The Society had been contacted by a person in England who had a question relating to the tombstone of a Lieutenant Edgar Oliphant Anstey, who had died during the 1879 Zulu War. The Lieutenant was listed as having been born at Highercombe, South Australia. I was able to confirm that Lt Edgar Anstey was the son of George Anstey, after whom both Anstey Hill and the Library’s mascot are named.
Edgar was born in Highercombe in 1851. In 1873, he graduated from the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, and was commissioned a Lieutenant in the First Battalion, Twenty-fourth Regiment of Foot.
Edgar was a part of a British invasion force that had set up camp in Zulu territory near the Isandlwana Mountain. On 22 January 1879 an army of 24,000 Zulus had moved, undetected, into striking distance of the camp and attacked. The ensuing battle saw the British out-maneuvered and outnumbered by the Zulus. Over 1300 British soldiers were killed. It was the greatest defeat suffered by the British Army in the Victorian era.
Anstey led a fighting retreat from the plains beneath Isandlwana which was halted on the banks of the Manzimnyama River. Historian Ian Knight, in the book Isandlwana 1879: The great Zulu victory writes “With a steep drop … down into the river-bed below them, they could probably go no further; their only hope for survival lay as a group… And here, by the banks of the river, they were overrun – the true ‘last stand of the 24th’.”
Sources state that Edgar’s body was found by his brother, who was also serving in Zululand, and sent to England for burial.
Edgar’s death gives him the sad distinction of being the first South Australian to die as a soldier on active duty overseas, the first of a number that would swell during the twentieth century.
‘Carpet Snake’-an acrylic dot painting mounted on an unframed canvas featured during the Tea Tree Gully Reconciliation Week Art Exhibition from local Aboriginal artist Tanya Sansbury.
The Library and the Hive are celebrating National Reconciliation Week 2012.
What is National Reconciliation Week?
National Reconciliation Week is celebrated across Australia each year between 27 May and 3 June. The chosen dates recognise two significant achievements in the reconciliation journey; the anniversaries of the successful 1967 referendum and the High Court Mabo decision. The theme for this year is, ‘Let’s Talk Recognition’ with a strong focus on how all Australians can better understand and appreciate each other, the wonderful contributions, cultures and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Why are these dates significant?
27 May marks the anniversary of Australia’s most successful referendum and defining event in our nation’s history. The 1967 referendum saw over 90 percent of Australians vote to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islanders in the national census. 2012 marks the 45th anniversary of the 1967 referendum.
On 3 June 1992, the High Court of Australia delivered its landmark Mabo decision which legally recognised that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have a special relationship to the land which existed prior to the colonalisation and still exists today. The recognition helped pave the way for land rights called the Native Title. This year is the 20th anniversary of the Mabo decision.
Check the Reconciliation Week webpage for details of upcoming events across council.
We all know the importance of recognition and how great it makes everyone feel. National Reconciliation week is a wonderful opportunity to recognize all Australians, and the unique place of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders within this country. So get involved by attending an event and do your part for Reconciliation Week.
David, our local historian is hosting an historical bus tour of the area on Wednesday May 16 – taking an amusing and affectionate look at how the ‘decade that taste forgot’ was experienced in Tea Tree Gully. The 70′s saw an explosion in population, and major changes in landscape; including the transition from vineyard and farming to residential land use and the creation of Tea Tree Plaza. Come along for an eye opening journey through the seventies. More details are available on our website.
The entries are in and it’s time to vote for your favourite in our “Change History” competition. We asked you to take a photo from our collection and reimagine it, and your imaginations ran wild! Dinosaurs in Tea Tree Gully, UFOs in St Agnes, come and see them all at the library service desk and have your say in who will walk away with one of the Kindle Fire prizes.
The lucky winners will be announced at a special event in the library Saturday 19th May at 2pm.
This Monday night and Thursday morning don’t miss out on this wonderful exhibition by Carole Simmonds of the Tea Tree Gully and Districts Historical Society. Travel back in time through the most intriguing slides from our collection and discover the history of Tea Tree Gully with us in the Community Learning Centre.
Wine and cheese will be provided on Monday evening (7-8pm) and morning tea on Thursday (10-11am). Bookings are free and can be made at the library or by calling (08) 8397 7333.
Interested in Tea Tree Gully’s history, but don’t want to sit around reading about it? You should go on one of our bus tours!
The Library’s historical bus tours are a great way to get out of the house, meet other like-minded history enthusiasts and take a day trip through the Tea Tree Gully area. The $30 cost includes a home-cooked lunch at the Old Highercombe Hotel Museum, and you get to have a look through the museum afterwards.
Our next upcoming tour is the “3 G’s” – Golden Grove, Glen Ewin and the Gully. It’ s on Monday 30 April from 9:30am to 2:30pm and bookings open on April 13. Later this year we even have a couple of brand new bus tours, including a 70s themed one! For more details, see our Local History Program.
If you’re aged between 13 and 25, enter our Change History competition for the chance to win an Amazon Fire tablet PC.
We are asking you to creatively ‘improve’ a photo from our local history collection, as we’ve done here. Use your Photoshop skills or some good old art and craft to go crazy and change history!
See the website for all the details.
Whilst recently cleaning up folders on my hard drive I came across some photos of the Library from 2007. It’s amazing to see what has changed in such a short time. This was pre-Toy Library days and featured the old photocopier alcove, Local History Office, and the Library workroom (where all the cataloguing and processing occurs) was a garage!
Check the before and after photos below.
The directors garage became the Library workroom.
An internal view of the garage and now the Library workroom.
The Local History Office is still in the roughly the same location, however the Local History collection was moved, and the photocopier alcove demolished to make way for the new Toy Library.
If you have any photos or memories of the region, we would be very happy to find out about them. You can also see our range of books, photos, maps and other items on the history of the region in our Local History collection.
Having an interest and love of books goes with the territory of working in a library. One staff member was given an antique copy of Mrs. Beeton’s Shilling Cookery Book, also known as The Englishwoman’s Cookery Book by Isabella Beeton. It was given as a wedding present to a neighbours’ parents in 1900.
There are many pearls of wisdom and practical hints covering topics such as hints to prevent kitchen waste, modes of preparing meat and home butchery plus serviette folding techniques. The class system of the time is evident with lists of kitchen utensils and cookware being necessary and ‘suitable for any mansion’, ‘Suitable for good class houses’, ‘suitable for small houses’ and ‘suitable for the smallest house.’
Advertisements in the front and back pages of the book include those for Bumstead’s Table Salt, Savory and Moore’s Best Food for Infants, and Freeman’s Syrup of Phosphorus – ‘for the most delicately constituted.’
Some of the recipes of note include: conger eel soup which included 2lbs of conger eel and 2 marigolds, how to dress a sheep’s head, calf’s feet jelly and gooseberry trifle. There is also a section on invalid cookery that includes such gastronomic delights as barley gruel, egg wine and mutton broth.
Useful handbooks advertised in the back of the book include:
The Manners of Polite Society, or Etiquette for All
All about Etiquette – for Ladies, Gentlemen and Families
Profitable and economical poultry keeping by Mrs. Eliot James – (author of Indian Household Management)
The manners of the aristocracy by One of Themselves
Our Servants: their duties to us and ours to them including the boarding-out question by Mrs. Eliot James.
The book is an interesting and nostalgic reflection on how times have changed. Although the Library doesn’t own this particular book we do have The Short Life and Long Times of Mrs Beeton and a massive range of modern cook books.
What antique books have you come across?