About this blog

This blog is about the history of the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp and neighbouring areas, such as Pakenham, Cranbourne and Garfield, and any other historical subjects I feel like writing about. It's my own original research and writing and if you live in the area you may have read some of the stories before in the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp Historical Society newsletter or the Koo-Wee-Rup township newsletter, The Blackfish, or the Garfield township newsletter, The Spectator.
Heather Arnold.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

What happened in Garfield in 1913

This is a look at what happened in Garfield in 1913, 100 years ago. These references are from various newspapers available on Trove http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper.

On January 16 1913, the South Bourke and Mornington Journal (SBMJ) carried a report of a recent Shire of Berwick Council meeting where applications were presented from a Mrs C. Louch of Garfield and a Miss M. Bell of Bunyip to manufacture ice cream. In the 1914 Electoral Roll, Catherine Louch was listed as the Newsagent at Garfield. Margaret Bell of Bunyip is listed as a 'Confectioner'.  Commercial production of ice cream was relatively new in Australia and ice cream had only just become popular.  Apparently, originally custard was used in the ice cream but this was revolutionised by Fred Peters, an American, who had arrived in Sydney in 1908 with his mother's ice cream recipe which used only pure dairy products. It took Peters four year to accumulate enough money to go into the ice cream business and when he did in 1912 the demand for his 'American' style ice cream was amazing. Peters Ice Cream is now part of Nestles.

South Bourke and Mornington Journal  January 16, 1913

I don't know how successful the new ice cream making ventures of Catherine and Margaret were, however in the 1919 Electoral roll Catherine is still listed as the Newsagent, but in the 1924 Electoral roll there is a Catherine Louch listed in the St Kilda area and her occupation is listed a 'Confectioner', so it seems likely that her career started in Garfield. I don't have any more information about Margaret.

Also in the SBMJ of February 20, Thomas O’Donohue complained to the Council about the smoke nuisance, which had been going on for two years, from Henry Hourigan’s shoeing forge which adjoined his properties. Mr Hourigan was told that he must erect a chimney otherwise proceedings would be taken against him.

On May 22, the SBMJ reported on another Berwick Shire Council meeting where the Clerk of Works recounted that a traction engine had destroyed the road from Hill’s to the Garfield Road bridge and a considerable quantity of maintenance sand will have to be put on, otherwise the road will be impassable before the end of winter. One hundred years later people are still concerned about the state of roads, so no change there.

In the Sunday Times, a Perth newspaper, on July 6 under the headline A Mother’s Appeal there was an enquiry from Garfield for a young man named Fitzgerald who is supposed to have landed in W.A early in April and gone to the country sleeper cutting. His mother was dangerously ill and anxious to hear from him. He was described as ‘5ft 11in high, dark complexion, not very stout’. 


Sunday Times (Perth) July 6, 1913
In another Berwick Shire Council report from the SBMJ of July 24, a letter had arrived from William Campbell, the grocer, enclosing a petition asking that a polling booth be established at Garfield. The Council’s rather unhelpful response was that this was not thought to be desirable but that Pakenham South is more suitable.

In the SBMJ of December 17, it was reported that a money order office has been established in connection with the Post Office at Garfield.  Finally on December 27, Thomas O’Donohue was back in the news again as The Argus reported on December 27 that two brick shops owned by him were destroyed by fire. The shops were occupied by a Mr Deas who was a draper.  They were totally destroyed; however the stock was insured for £400 and the buildings for £500.

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