Category Archives: History

Of sheep and seaside daisies…

The first sign that the town had a connection with Scotland was its name: Glencoe. The second sign: a redheaded ‘Weasley’ walking down the main road… Glencoe is a small country town in south-eastern South Australia, to the north-west of … Continue reading

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Christina & Her Sisters

These eight, somewhat startled-looking women were all born during Queen Victoria’s reign, in the colony of South Australia. Meet Annie and Clara, Edith and Grace, Lily and May, Christina and Kathleen. All sisters. Another sister, Alice, died as a toddler. … Continue reading

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Not Another Brick in the Wall

While I have always loved a good chat, I used to dread the thought of speaking in public. My voice and my hands would shake. My mouth would go dry. The page before me would go blank. I would wither … Continue reading

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Colonel Light’s Vision: an old chestnut or a model for the future?

Through this exceptionally long, wet winter, I have spent a lot of time immersed in the history of South Australia, researching families and individuals who played a significant part in founding our state. Edward Gibbon Wakefield, for example, was a … Continue reading

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Mintaro & Martindale

Only eleven kilometres off the Horrocks Highway that sprints through the Clare Valley, Mintaro is a tiny, rural village that has been tucked into the hills since Adelaide was a toddler. In 1984 it was declared a State Heritage site, … Continue reading

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Victoriana

I love, love, love Victorian kitchens – and I don’t mean the state of Victoria, so troubled with Covid restrictions, but Queen Victoria and the era of huge basement kitchens, à la Downtown Abbey. Deep within the British stately home … Continue reading

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‘Conspicuous Consumption’

Ayers House, now run as a museum by the National Trust, illustrates one of the early success stories in the history of South Australia. Situated on North Terrace, a tree-lined boulevard in the city of Adelaide, Ayers House is an … Continue reading

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Windmills

Patience. The windmill never strays in search of the wind.’ Andy J. Sklivis It’s been the perfect weather for ice-cream this past couple of weeks. The summer days have been long and gloriously warm. On our hill, 35 metres above … Continue reading

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Operation Pied Piper

Remember the childhood fairy tale about a man with a flute, who lured all the children of the village away from their parents, after the townsfolk failed to honour their promise too him? With the best intentions in the world, … Continue reading

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Of Battenberg Cake & Coronation Chicken

I have spent a long morning immersed in English history in the Great Hall at Carisbrooke Castle, trying to untangle the web of European connections that is the British Royal Family. What better way, then, to blow away the cobwebs … Continue reading

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