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A soldiersettler town

INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................ 1
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ........................................................................................ 1
NOTES .............................................................................................................. 1
MONASH AND LONE GUM............................................................................... 3
SETTLEMENT.................................................................................................... 6
SOLDIER SETTLER SCHEME ................................................................................. 6
POMPOOTA TRAINING FARM................................................................................. 9
TRAINEES ........................................................................................................ 13
SETTLERS FROM BROKEN HILL .......................................................................... 15
FRUIT BLOCKS ............................................................................................... 16
CLEARING THE LAND ......................................................................................... 16
DRY BLOCKS .................................................................................................... 16
PLANTING BLOCKS............................................................................................ 17
BLOCK SIZES ................................................................................................... 22
PLANT AND EQUIPMENT .................................................................................... 23
HARDSHIPS .................................................................................................... 28
ROYAL COMMISSION ........................................................................................ 28
THE DEPRESSION ............................................................................................. 31
HOUSES .......................................................................................................... 36
DOMESTIC WATER SUPPLY ................................................................................ 37
ELECTRICITY SUPPLY ........................................................................................ 38
REFRIGERATION ............................................................................................... 41
TELEPHONE ..................................................................................................... 42
RADIO ............................................................................................................. 47
TELEVISION ..................................................................................................... 47
TOWNSHIP ...................................................................................................... 50
ROAD NAMES ................................................................................................... 51
BUILDINGS ....................................................................................................... 54
STORE ............................................................................................................ 61
POST OFFICE ................................................................................................... 64
HALL ............................................................................................................... 67
INSTITUTE ........................................................................................................ 69
BUTCHER ........................................................................................................ 71
BLACKSMITH .................................................................................................... 71
MONASH CLUB................................................................................................. 71
METHODIST CHURCH ........................................................................................ 73
ST. OSWALDS ANGLICAN CHURCH .................................................................... 74
FIRE BRIGADE.................................................................................................. 78
TRANSPORT ................................................................................................... 89
ROADS ............................................................................................................ 89
CARS .............................................................................................................. 90
BUSES ............................................................................................................ 91

PADDLE STEAMERS .......................................................................................... 91

RAILWAY ......................................................................................................... 91
AEROPLANES .................................................................................................. 91
WORLD WAR II ............................................................................................... 94
LABOUR SHORTAGES ....................................................................................... 95
AIR OBSERVERS .............................................................................................. 96
SCHOOL .......................................................................................................... 97
CLEMENT W ILFRED TILL ................................................................................... 97
JOSEPH HAROLD BROWN ................................................................................. 97
HENRY JAMES FRANKLIN .................................................................................. 97
ALBERT MCHUGH ............................................................................................ 98
JOHN MURPHY ................................................................................................ 98
FELIX DANIEL KUSS ......................................................................................... 99
SCHOOL BUILDING ......................................................................................... 100
SCHOOL BAND ............................................................................................... 102
SCHOOL SPORTS ........................................................................................... 105
SCHOOL FOOTBALL........................................................................................ 106
ANZAC ESSAY ................................................................................................ 106
STUDENT ACTIVITIES ...................................................................................... 106
INFANT W ELFARE CLUB AND SCHOOL COMMITTEE ............................................ 107
SPORTS ........................................................................................................ 118
RECREATION GROUND .................................................................................... 118
TENNIS ......................................................................................................... 119
FOOTBALL ..................................................................................................... 122
CRICKET ....................................................................................................... 126
LAWN BOWLS ................................................................................................ 127
INDOOR BOWLS.............................................................................................. 129
TABLE TENNIS ............................................................................................... 129
WOMENS BASKETBALL .................................................................................. 129
MENS BASKETBALL ....................................................................................... 130
PLAYGROUND.............................................................................................. 133
COMMUNITY ................................................................................................. 144
THE FIRST CHRISTMAS ................................................................................... 144
RETURNED SERVICES LEAGUE........................................................................ 144
SETTLERS CLUB............................................................................................. 146
MODEL PARLIAMENT ...................................................................................... 148
DISTRICT COUNCIL ........................................................................................ 151
PROGRESS ASSOCIATION ............................................................................... 152
COUNTRY W OMENS ASSOCIATION (C.W.A.) ................................................... 153
GIRLS GUIDES AND BROWNIES ........................................................................ 153
BOY SCOUTS ................................................................................................ 155
RED CROSS .................................................................................................. 156
R.A.O.B. LODGE ........................................................................................... 156
YUGOSLAVS .................................................................................................. 156
MUSIC .......................................................................................................... 158
IRRIGATION .................................................................................................. 163
CHANNELS .................................................................................................... 163

CHANNELMEN ................................................................................................ 166

DROWNINGS .................................................................................................. 167
DRAINAGE ..................................................................................................... 168
PIPELINES ..................................................................................................... 169
WEATHER ..................................................................................................... 174
FROST .......................................................................................................... 174
AGRICULTURE ............................................................................................. 175
APRICOTS ..................................................................................................... 175
LUCERNE....................................................................................................... 175
AGRICULTURAL BUREAU ................................................................................. 175
RIVERLAND VINE IMPROVEMENT ...................................................................... 175
WINERIES AND FRUIT PROCESSORS ....................................................... 176
VINDANA ....................................................................................................... 176
OMERSOWN W INES ........................................................................................ 178
RIVERS W INES............................................................................................... 178
COCKATOO RIDGE WINERY ............................................................................. 179
PACKING SHED............................................................................................... 181
BERRI DISTILLERY .......................................................................................... 182
BERRI CO-OPERATIVE PACKING UNION LTD. .................................................... 183
RIVERLAND FRUIT PRODUCERS CO-OPERATIVE LTD. ........................................ 183
TOORA VALE (BERRI) PTY LTD ........................................................................ 183
SUNNYLAND FRUITS........................................................................................ 184
INDUSTRY ..................................................................................................... 189
GRANT ENGINEERING COMPANY ..................................................................... 189
WEBBER ENTERPRISES .................................................................................. 189
HOFFMANN ENGINEERS .................................................................................. 189
APPENDIX I, ORIGINAL SETTLERS ............................................................ 190
APPENDIX 2, WORLD WAR I SERVICE....................................................... 195
CASULTIES .................................................................................................... 200
MEDALS ........................................................................................................ 201
OFFICERS...................................................................................................... 204
TIMELINE ....................................................................................................... 205
APPENDIX 3, WORLD WAR II SERVICE...................................................... 206
DEATHS ........................................................................................................ 206
PRISONERS OF W AR ...................................................................................... 210
MEDALS ........................................................................................................ 210
DUAL SERVICE ............................................................................................... 210
GARRISON BATTALIONS .................................................................................. 210
VOLUNTEER DEFENCE CORPS ........................................................................ 211
AUSTRALIAN ARMY ......................................................................................... 211
ROYAL AUSTRALIAN AIR FORCE ...................................................................... 213
ROYAL AUSTRALIAN NAVY .............................................................................. 213
WOMENS LAND ARMY .................................................................................... 213
BIBLIOGRAPHY ............................................................................................ 215
INDEX OF FAMILY NAMES .......................................................................... 216

Monash and Lone Gum council ward (red outline). www.maps.google.com.au, www.atlas.sa.gov.au


I would like to thank the following individuals for their help:
Mona Revell (nee Hunt).
Lindsay Strong, Monash Primary School.
Ian & Dorothy Sando.
Mollie Sando (nee McCauley).
Grant Telfer, Monash.
Jacque Zagotsis, Berri Library local history section.

Quoted material is shown as indented Times New Roman font. Square brackets
indicate authors comments.
In cases where copyright holder of a photograph is unknown it has been
attributed to source of copy.

Monash and Lone Gum

Lone Gum river red gum

(Eucalyptus Camaldulensis),
1920, photo by C. W. Till.
State Library of South Australiam

Lone Gum river red gum

(Eucalyptus camaldulensis),
August 2002, photo by author.


Monash and Lone Gum

Monash, town population of 5571, is located six kilometres to northwest of the
town of Berri in the Riverland region of South Australia. The BerriBarmera
council ward of Monash and Lone Gum has a population of 1,115.2 In an effort
to maintain an even distribution of voters the ward boundaries have been
expanded to include Toorak as well as parts of Glossop and Berri districts.3
The district of Monash, together with Berri, Glossop and Winkie, comprise the
Berri Irrigation Area. Monash and Glossop, along with parts of Berri and Winkie,
were settled by returned World War I soldiers under a state government
repatriation scheme.
Monash and Lone Gum, 1924
The settlement of Monash is very pleasantly situated, in the lower portion of the
Lone Gum hollow. It is separated from the earlier settled area by the Morgan
road, and on the other three sides it is girdled by a mallee ridge from which the
blocks slope inwards, and on which a large proportions of the settlers' homes are
built. The high land further back furnishes the small "dry farm" areas that go
with most of the irrigable blocks and permit, or will permit, of the growing of
hay crops for the settlers use.4
From time to time confusion occurs over the names of the settlement, even in
official circles. The land south of the Morgan road will always be Lone Gum to
the settlers there and likewise the northern side will always bear the name of
Monashyet the whole settlement is really one.5
South Australian Birth, Death and Marriage records last mention Lone Gum in
1929 by which time Monash was commonly used to describe the entire
settlement. The joint names Monash and Lone Gum are retained by
community groups and the name of the council ward.
Lone Gum, 1920.
About four miles north-west of Berri the soldier settlement of Lone Gum begins.
This patch is now officially called Monash, but it will probably never lose the
name of Lone Gum given it by the first soldiers who pitched camp there in 1916.
Very appropriate, too, was the Diggers' choice, for standing away in its lonely
isolation three miles from the river, like a faithful sentinel keeping watch in the
scrub, is a grand umbrageous red gum-tree, proud monarch of its surroundings.
The boys could see in that tree a sacred significance dear to their memory of
Lone Pine [Gallipoli], and so the spot at the old tree came to be named and be
known. Thoughtfully has the Government decided to reserve half an acre round

2001 census, Australian Bureau of Statistics.

2006 census, Australian Bureau of Statistics.
3 Murray Pioneer, 11 Jun 1999.
4 Murray Pioneer, 7 Mar 1924.
5 Murray Pioneer, 16 Jan 1925.

the gum, which even more as the years roll on will be distinguishing and
hallowed landmark of this district.6
The romance of a tree, 1921.
There is a romance attaching to the shapely tree which stands alone in the
middle of a block in the Berri irrigation area, near the town of Monash. It is the
only gum tree discovered in the mallee scrub which covered the whole Berri
district, and consequently that part of the settlement in its vicinity was called
Lone Gum. The tree is now set apart as a precious possession, and it is officially
proclaimed immune from interference. The tree is worthy of this distinction,
apart altogether from the fact that it is the only one of its kind which maintained
an existence so far from its fellows on the banks of the River Murray. It is
symmetrical, tall, and handsome, and it stands without companions of any kind,
in solitary glory on a spacious plain, now covered by blocks in various stages of
development, and planted with vines and fruit trees.7
The Lone Gum tree, 1921
[The Lone Gum is a] solitary gum that stands like a sentinel among the mallee at
Lone Gum Camp. This gum, which stands amid low mallee scrubwhip-stick
malleeon the highlands above the Murray Valley is peculiar, as its species
[Eucalyptus camaldulensis] is particularly confined to the vast river flats. For
many years this arboreal giant was known as Trussell's Retreat. Trussell, who
was employed by the Cobdogla station proprietor, was forced to ascend into its
umbrageous shelter by an infuriated steer. Hence nomenclature relatively
interesting. Lone Gum is picturesque, but lacks legendary association. So many
Murray names are disappearing and others substituted entirely dissociated from
historical incidents, that lend them interest, that one regrets the enthusiasm
which causes the newer settlers to obliterate the traces of the original pioneers.8
The Lone Gum, 1938.
Passing Lone Gum, one noticed the tree from which the first of the Soldier
areas takes its name to perpetuate the memory of Gallipolis famous Lone
Pine standing amid the vines as straight as a lance. As the years go by it
grows taller and is recognised as a monument not to be touched by any man.9
The Lone Gum may go, 1952.
The solitary red gum tree which gave the original name of Lone Gum to the area
now called Monash may have enjoyed its last summer. Lord of its own quarteracre reserve within section 290 the tree has allowed its root system to damage
nearby drains and plantings. The roots are also affecting the main Dept. of Lands
drain system in the area, causing drainage water to head up on several
properties. Some time ago the Dept. had difficulty in removing fine roots from
the main drain as the full bore of the pipe had become tightly packed for some
distance. The secretary for Irrigation has written that there will be no alternative

The Mail, 18 Dec 1920.

The Advertiser, 14 July 1921.
8 The Advertiser, 15 July 1921.
9 Murray Pioneer, 31 Mar 1938.


but to remove the tree unless the problem can be overcome without any great
difficulty. The tree has little scenic value, but may carry some local sentimental
value. Its fate will be discussed by the Berri District Council at the next council
The Lone Gum, 1952
At its meeting on June 12 the Berri District Council considered the removal of
the Lone Gum tree, as proposed by the Irrigation Branch of the Department of
Lands. A letter was read from Mr. Reg. Telfer, of Monash, who asked the
council to use all its influence to prevent the tree from being removed. The
writer suggested that it would be better for the Dept. of Lands to resume a strip
of land and compensate the lessee than pull down such a landmark, The tree is
the only big one for miles around and has been a surveyors mark since the
district was first measured. Since the meeting further letter has been received
from the committee of the Lone Gum and Monash Institute urging the council to
seek every alternative avenue before agreeing to the removal of the tree.
Members of the new council will inspect the tree and its surroundings this
month. Meanwhile ratepayers who have views on this matter should forward
them to their councillors without delay. The council is keen to know the feeling
of the district.11
Threat to historic tree, 1952
No single tree in the Upper Murray, with the possible exception of Loxtons
famous pepper, holds great historical significance and sentimental value than the
grand old lone gum which gave its name to the Lone Gum section of the Berri
Irrigation Area. Yet, astounding to relate, it is faced with a serious threat to its
existence at the hands of man. A landmark in the first essentially returned
soldier settlement to be taken up in the irrigation areas after World War I, it
caught the imagination of the men of Anzac who embodied in its name a close
association with the Lone Pine of the Gallipoli campaign. Quite apart from the
magnificent proportions to which this tree has grown it has further claim to
distinctionas its name also impliesin that it is comparatively rare to find the
red gum growing in high level, mallee country, away from the river and its
accompanying creeks. The little trouble this tree periodically causes must surely
be outweighed many times over by its historic and sentimental worth. In this
part of the State, where trees of noble dimensions are few and far between, every
effort should be made to preserve them, especially such distinguished specimens
as Lone Gum.12
Berri Council favours sparing of historic Lone Gum, 1952
The annual inspection of the district by members of the council took place on
Monday. On visiting the site of the Lone Gum, which it had been suggested
might be destroyed, it was the opinion of the councillors that the tree should be


Berri Community News, 11 Jun 1952.

Berri Community News, 18 Jun 1952.
12 Murray Pioneer, Jun 1952.
13 Berri Community News, Jul 1952.


The Lone Gum tree still stands among the vineyards.

Soldier settler scheme
The Discharged Soldier Settlement Act, which authorizes the government to
afford special opportunities to discharged soldiers to take up the land, makes
provision for financial assistance to men without capital on extremely liberal
terms. The provisions of the Act apply to all discharged soldiers and sailors who
have enlisted for active service, and whose discharge is not due to misconduct.14
It was agreed that for future settlement the amount of the Commonwealths
advance to the States in respect of each soldier should be fixed at 625, which
must be applied in advance to the soldier for working capital; further, the total
amount to be advanced to the States by the Commonwealth in any one financial
year would be appropriated by Parliament.15
A shortage of blocks - 350 men waiting.
The State Government accepted the responsibility of settling returned South
Australian soldier-agriculturists on the land, but there is reason to suspect that
'they are not making a brilliant success I of their undertaking. It is even hinted
that things have already come to such a pass that an acute crisis may be avoided
if only by immediate and determined action. I briefly stated, the policy of the
Government in regard I to soldier settlement is as follows: -Returned men who
wish to settle on the land must either give proof of experience in agriculture or
undertake a course of training. This training may be obtained at a Government
training farm or under an approved practical farmer or fruit grower. A soldier
who has had previous experience is required to provide credentials from three
approved agriculturists who have a knowledge of his ability, and these
credentials are sent to the various local repatriation committees for verification.
Notwithstanding the requirements in the matter of qualification we are informed
that applications by soldiers for land are now coming in so quickly that the
Government cannot cope with them. There is said to be little Crown land
available in proved agricultural areas, the blocks held by the Government and
ready for occupation being mostly on the West Coast. Some of the land is good,
but the soldiers have a marked disinclination to go into the mallee country.
There are now about 150 men qualified and awaiting the allotment of farms or
river blocks. The Government are purchasing improved farms or blocks from
time to time, but it is asserted that on the average only about a couple of settlers
are being accommodated each week. There are being approved for assistance,
however, about 50 a week. It may easily be seen that the enormous disparity
between the number approved and the number settled can only lead to chaos
unless something is done to speed up the rate of preparation of blocks. The

Land Settlement for Soldiers, undated, pamphlet held by State Library of South Australia.
Premiers Conference, Government of the Commonwealth of Australia (undated).


Government hope to be able to accommodate about 1,510 men on the Murray

within the next two years, but the rate of application will probably be
accelerated during that time, and it is feared that even with 1,500 settled on .the
river the position will not lie entirely relieved. In the meantime what are the
waiting men to do? Some are obtaining the sustenance allowance from the
Federal Repatriation Department; others are taking agricultural employment in
the country, and others, it is asserted, are spending the money they accumulated
while on active service. It is suggested that the preparation of farm and blocks
should have been more vigorously pushed .on during the war. The Government,
however, have been handicapped by shortage of labor, and by having,
machinery held up in London which was required for trenching on the Murray.
Pompoota Training Farm is full, and the Mount Remarkable Training Farm is
nearly full. The Government are considering a proposal to place trainees out
with established river settlers, and divide between the soldier and the settlerinstructor the amount new being disbursed by the Government for training a
settler. In this way men could be trained in greater numbers, but that would not
overcome the difficulty of providing holdings for them when they are trained. In
addition to the 350 said to be awaiting blocks there are about 20 men at
Pompoota who are approved for blocks, and who are keeping other trainees out
of the training farm. Men who have been in search of farming properties have
been in a slightly better position than those who require river blocks, as the
former have been able to get options over properties which, if approved, the
State would purchase for them. The Government do not favor that course,
however, as it simply mean substituting a soldier farmer for a civilian farmer,
and does not, tend to increase primary production.16


Advertiser, 9 April 1919.


Pompoota training farm [looking east] showing the hall [left] and the line of
cottages along Honeymoon Avenue. The stone buildings on the intersection are
extant in 2010. Mannum local history collection, photo 279.

View of Pompoota orientated same as top photo, showing cross road (upper
centre). Road extends down to Pompoota landing where soldier settlers loaded
their possessions on paddle boats for unloading at Mannum, and then by road
to Monash. Google earth satellite photograph, imaged 26 April 2005.


Pompoota training farm

Amongst the many problems arising out of the Great War is one that exercises
the minds of everyone who manifests any practical interest in the welfare of the
soldiers after they have served their country and returned to civil life.
It is patent to all who give the matter a passing thought that a large percentage of
the men, who previous to enlistment were engaged in indoor callings, would
naturally, after their taste of outdoor life, prefer rural pursuits rather than return
to desk, counter, or workshop.
Fortunately the state posses a very considerable area of firstclass irrigable
country along the valley of the Murray, which area over a quarter of a centurys
experience on similar lands at Mildura, Renmark, and elsewhere, has proved to
be eminently adapted for the successful settlement of a type of practically
inexperienced men, and it was to these lands that our minds were directed when
the question of soldier settlement was first mooted.
As a result the writer was requested to submit a report as to the prospects of
settling a large percentage of the returned men on these river lands with the
object of their following up the pursuits of dairying, pig raising, fodder and
vegetable growing, lamb fattening, fruit growing, poultry keeping, etc. With the
satisfactory results of closer settlement on the existing irrigable and reclaimed
lands, and with the area still available, this was a comparatively easy task, but
the following problems promptly arose.
Many of the retuned men who might apply to be allotted lands would be entirely
unsuitable for the calling for the various reasons, including:
Total want of experience aggravated by following the advice of
unpractical theorists and experts;
Unsuitable temperament;
Physical unfitness as a result of wounds, etc.
Such are born tired and have not yet recovered from the complaint.
To attempt to settle such men indiscriminately would be, in many cases, simply
to court financial disaster both to the state and to the individual. The solution
therefore was the inauguration of a training farm where the intending settlers
could secure the experience necessary to enable such of them as were satisfied
with the life and its prospects and proved their bona fides, to be allotted blocks
on which to make their homes as desired. This report was submitted on January
5, 1916, duly approved and the outcome was the Pompoota training farm.17
The State Government established a training farm on the river flat at Pompoota,
40 km north of Murray Bridge, for the training of returned soldiers in fruit
growing and dairying. The farm opened on 27 March 1916 with 11 trainees, a
manager, a foreman and a storeman. The first allocation of nineteen blocks of
land, at Wall, was made on 1 February 1917, followed by thirteen blocks at
Moorook on 13 April 1917.


Pompoota Chronicle, Feb 1918.



Paddle steamer ELLEN.

District Council of Loxton Waikerie,

Pompoota landing, circa 1920.

State Library of South Australia, PRG280/1/17/649. scan 10290.



The [farm] manager is required to report monthly on each trainee as to the

nature of the work performed, conduct, health, etc. trainees are employed to the
best advantage, and whenever possible are given an insight into all farm duties,
except in such instances as where an indication is given by the trainee of his
desire to follow any special course.
From 3 to 12 months probation is provided to enable the board of management
to arrive at a definitive conclusion concerning the probationers qualifications.
During the time such trainees are employed on the farm married trainees receive
5 shillings per day with a 17 shillings per week allowance, and house, wood,
kerosene, and milk free; whilst single men receive 30 shillings per week with
board and lodgings. Cottages are provided for the married and barrack
accommodation for the single men.18
There were 35 men in training [at the Pompoota training farm] and 40 more
were ready to go there. A number of able-bodied returned soldiers were to be
sent to Berri and Cobdogla, who would be engaged at the ruling rate of pay (10/
a day) preparing land in connection with the scheme to settle returned soldiers.19
at Pompoota, on the banks of the Murray 70 men are in training, half of whom
are married. South Australia has already placed about 14 returned soldiers on
irrigation farms at Berri20
Pompoota delegation, 1919
A delegation of trainees from Pompoota visited Berri today in company with
Mr. S. McIntosh (Director of Irrigation) to inspect the blocks and report to
returned soldiers at [the] training farm. They were motored around Berri and
inspected the packing shed, distillery and Lone Gum blocks for returned
Pompoota trainee, 1919
The training is what one makes it. If men are earnest and have a desire to learn
the business they receive splendid instruction. There are plenty of social
pleasures, dances and concerts being frequently held. Some of the trainees here
have been waiting for nearly two years for blocks. The delay in opening up the
irrigated area seems to be caused by the difficulty experienced in securing
sufficient labour, I am very keen to get on a block, but the prospects for such
seem none to bright owing to the limited area available.22
By April 1919 the Pompoota training farm was full.


Pompoota Chronicle, Feb 1918.

Adelaide Advertiser, 1 Sep 1916.
20 Adelaide Advertiser, 27 Jul 1918.
21 Murray Pioneer, 21 Mar 1919.
22 Murray Pioneer, 30 Apr 1920.


There are 113 trainees (men), besides the wives and families of about 50 of
them. There are close on 100 children.23
If trained at Pompoota the man is later provided with a block graded, fenced and
channelled and planted with lucerne, and having a house upon it. In all, the
advance made for stock, plant, and the house is 750. 24
Bon voyage, 1919
On Saturday, August 16, [1919] a number of trainees left here for Berri for
further instruction in fruit growing prior to settling on their blocks. It was
regretted that so short notice was given that no send off could be arranged.
When the [paddle steam ship] s.s. Ellen arrived at the landing quite a large
crowd had gathered to wish the departees Bon Voyage, and although it was
midnight, ringing cheers rent the air as the steamer moved up-river, everyone
genuinely wishing the boys bonne sante [good health].25

In July 1921 John Ellis was a trainee at Pompoota when he was allocated an
11 acre block at Monash. The next month the Pompoota training farm was
disbanded and subdivided for allotment as dairy farms.
Monash settlers who trained at Pompoota
Edward O. Clancy
Michael I. Dwyer
John Ellis
Arthur Hallam
Harry March
R. Nixon
Roy N. Pash
George W. Quinton
Reginald Russell
Arnold E. Sando
George J. H. Smith
William M. Underwood
At Monash, where numerous soldiers are in possession of what are known as
improved blocks, averaging about 20 acres each, 10 of which were planted with
vines or trees, ample evidence of the satisfaction of settlers is apparent. The
whole scheme affords remarkable evidence of the success of leasehold
developmental work, which is being carried out in many parts of that State,
under the supervision of Mr. S. McIntosh, director of irrigation.27


Adelaide Advertiser, 31 May 1919.

Adelaide Advertiser, 11 Jan 1919.
25 Murray Pioneer, 17 Aug 1919.
26 The Register, 7 Nov 1923.
27 Melbourne Argus, 26 Feb 1920.



Soldier settler blocks were available to discharged Soldiers who were the
holders of qualification certificates. Some returned soldiers like Harry Beriman
had previously worked as labourers or fruit growers, mostly in the Berri,
Renmark or Mildura regions, and had the experience necessary to prepare
them for life on the land.
Due to the inadequacies of the Government training scheme many settlers
organised their own training in established fruit growing regions such as
Renmark or Waikerie. Laurie Maddern, a clerk from Adelaide before the war,
trained on his father in laws fruit block at Waikerie.
Instruction for returned men, 1919
There are at present a large number of returned soldiers officers and others
desirous of gaining experience of fruitgrowing on the river preparatory to
getting blocks of their own. Many applications have been received in Renmark
for positions which would provide the desired training, but comparatively few
growers are able, in the ordinary course of events to take on a learner for six or
twelve months, though doubtless many would be glad enough to put themselves
out a bit to do so it is now stated that a proposal has lately been laid before
cabinet whereby in such cases the State would pay so much and the grower so
much, bringing the total wage to the regular union rate.28
Early optimism led many to abandon their trade or profession in the belief that
fruit growing would be a prosperous vocation. In 1920 the first two headmasters
at Monash School, both returned soldiers, quit their jobs to take up fruit growing.
Land for soldiers, ministerial statement, 1919
It should be stated that many men who have opportunities of returning to their
pre-war occupations with good prospects should hesitate before throwing up
such opportunities to take up farming and fruit growing without having had any
previous experience that would lead them to decide that life on the land would
suit them.29
A good living, 1920.
The man who takes on fruit growing under irrigation in the expectation of
making a fortune will probably be disappointed. But there is a good living in the
business, under healthful and, in many respects, pleasant conditions, the records
of Renmark and Mildura and other established settlements on the river
abundantly demonstrate.30
Monash originals
We were told at Renmark by Mr. Muspratt an original grower there to
proceed due west till we came to Lake Bonney. This we did on the very rough

Murray Pioneer, 21 Mar 1919

Murray Pioneer, 28 Apr 1919.
30 Pioneer Irrigationists Manual No.1, Introduction by H. S. Taylor, 1920.


track through the bush. Passing along the edge of Lone Gum settlement (with
hardly any soldiers there yet) we stopped for a rest by what was Frank
Bollenhagens house, but no one was living there. The house had no doors or
windows yet. The Monash or north side of the track was in its natural state
but planting of vines was going on to the south or Lone Gum side. Those
houses there were already allotted, mostly of lime concrete. There were a few
homes on the Renmark side they had been built by or for the block owners,
and these were of limestone. After George [Gale] and I had proceeded on and
arrived at the Lake through more rough bush track, we saw a chap called Sam
Heath who was also to live in Monash later. He, George and I, were originals in
Monash. There were 54 men here at first. 31
Soldier Settlers Cheerful and Satisfied, 1929
In his article in Tuesdays Register the special representative writes very
cheerfully of the spirit he found, prevailing among the soldier settlers of the
Berri area. Under the sub-heading "Monash Wins Through" he writes :How Monash's 100 settlers won through early adversity was described to me by
Mr. M. W. Nicholls, at one time a well known commercial traveller. "All the
returned soldier settlers there," he said, "started under the Repatriation scheme
on a sustenance basis. We were actually on the bread line so to speak.
Unfortunately we struck a bad season in 1924, when we had low returns for our
first crop. The total return was about 37 for a ton of sultanas. I harvested my
first crop off 2-year-old vines, which averaged 22 cwt. to the acre. Since
then the position has not been too bad generally, thanks to the successful
handling of the problem by the Berri Co-operative Packing Union and Control.
"I do not know of anybody who is squealing", he went on, "and the average
return has been as high there as anywhere in the industry. The standard of
orchard work certainly has been high. Shirkers did not last long, and they have
been culled out.
"Had you any experience?" I asked. "No!". was the answer. "Most of us knew
nothing about the job when we came out here. Had we been repatriated under
any other trade the percentage of failures might have been higher. There is not a
vacant block in the settlement, and if there is one there are 20 applicants for it.
There is some wonderful land there, and Monash together with Winkie and
Glossop is probably the most successful settlement not only for production, but
also for the type of settlers." 32


Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.

Murray Pioneer, 18 Jan 1929.



Settlers from Broken Hill

Broken Hill, New South Wales has always had a close association with South
Australia. Sydney was twice as far as Adelaide. A railway from Broken Hill to
South Australia was opened in 1888, the Sydney line was finally completed in
1927. At the outbreak of World War I many men from Broken Hill enlisted in
Adelaide and served in South Australian units.
Prior to the declaration of war, Germany was by far the biggest importer of the
zinc mined at Broken Hill, but as a result of the war there was, for obvious
reasons, a huge drop in the demand for zinc, and many of the miners had to be
laid off. To enlist, some of the miners and men from the outlying country towns
rode pushbikes, camels or horses hundreds of kilometres through the bush.33
After the war several soldiers formerly from Broken Hill chose to become fruit
growers in Monash.
[It was] in 1919 when I and my cobber, George Gale, push-biked it from broken
Hill down the Darling River to Mildura, and then came this way to see about a
Soldiers Block.34
Broken Hill residents who settled in Monash
Angas Frederick Cross
Miner, from South Broken Hill.
Thomas W. Gainsborough Carpenter, from Broken Hill.
George Gale
Tailor, (originally from Victoria).
Charles R. McIvor
Agent, from Broken Hill.
Harry March
Iron moulder, from Railway Town, Broken Hill.
William J. Mawby
Engine cleaner, from North Broken Hill.
Roland H. Nancarrow
From Broken Hill.
Reginald G. Telfer
Miner, from Broken Hill.
Interstate residents who settled in Monash
Edward A. Bottrill
Fruit grower from Wentworth, NSW
George T. Evans
Livery stable proprietor from Mildura, Vic
Edward O. Clancy
Clerk, Ascot Vale, Vic
James N. M. Morison Draper from Maroona, Vic. Trained at Mildura.


Robert Kearney, Silent Voices - the story of the 10th Battalion, (2005).
Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.


Fruit blocks

Fruit blocks
Clearing the land
The first time I saw Monash area it was covered in mallee beautiful high trees
for mallee growing in the hollows.35
The land at Lone Gum was cleared, and the wood was carted to the Berri Pumps
during 1914 by Tom Jarrett and Bill Carroll, who were the chief contractors and
teamsters. It was called soldiers wood, and priced at 10s. per ton: 3s. for
cutting and 7s. for cartage. Land was surveyed and portioned out into blocks at
Lone Gum during 1914.36
I had a look at the steam tractors pulling out the stumps on Mr. McCreanors
block. The rain had made this work a good deal easier and the stumps readily
yielded, in fact the difficulty was to find a reliable anchor. The ganger in
charge there says he can clear three acres a day under favourable conditions. By
the way, Mr. McCreanors block is a very fine one and his dry block just across
the road is heavily timbered with mallee.37
A paragraph in the [Adelaide] daily papers might seem to forecast trouble at
[Lone Gum] on account of some returned soldiers who are working with a gang
of men clearing soldiers blocks not belonging to, and not wishing to join, the
A.W.U. [Australian Workers Union]. A question was asked in the House about
it and the Premier in reply said that under no consideration would the present
government compel returned soldiers to join unions. 38

Dry blocks
Along with their irrigated block settlers were either allocated, or able to lease,
dry blocks. These blocks were on higher land that could not be irrigated by the
gravity fed channels. They contained mallee trees that could be felled for
firewood to fuel the boilers at the Berri pumping station.
Some settlers tried their hand at dry land farming and there was always a
demand for hay to feed horses.
As I wanted some money to live on, and as no grapes could be picked for three
or more years, I thought of a way to get some. So I bought a mower. I already
had two horses and I could go out cutting the hay that was grown if it rained
There was a number of 25 acre blocks out there and settlers could get one on
annual lease for rent. So I first drilled in a crop of wheat, and when it grew and
was ready for hay about a foot high in this dry area some people asked me to


Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.

Berri: Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.
37 Murray Pioneer, 24 May 1918.
38 Murray Pioneer, date unknown.

Fruit blocks


mow it for them. They would then rake it up in heaps with a horse drawn
machine and I would get about five shillings an acre for mowing it. 39
In Monash the dry blocks occupied the valley ridge adjacent to the irrigated
blocks below and it was practical to build houses upon them. In Lone Gum
many of the dry blocks were located several miles east towards Berri.
In the 1980s the conversion from gravity fed open irrigation channels to
underground pipelines and electric pumps made it viable to irrigate much of the
dry land blocks and many were planted as vineyards or developed for housing.

Planting blocks
The first record of an allotment to a soldier settler in the Berri Irrigation Area
was to Harry Beriman, of Lone Gum on 1st June 1917. On 1st May 1918 further
allotments began in the Lone Gum area.
In 1918 a start was made on planting-up the blocks. Mr. Muspratt was in charge
of the planting, with Mr. Darcy Jury as his foreman. His gang, all from the
Pompoota training Camp, were allocated blocks in 1918. There were 13 men in
all. They spent six weeks at Renmark making the vine cuttings before they
started their work at lone Gum. The first block planted was that of W. Tait
Strahan, on 13th September, 1918, and the last was that of P. B. Thomas,
planted on 2nd November, 1918. Half of this block had to be replanted in 1919
when the rest of the Lone Gum area was planted up. H. Beriman and R. W.
McCreanor planted their own blocks, as did J. Robinson and H . Morrell, of
Glossop. Except for these four settlers, all the other block in the Berri Irrigation
Area where planted by the Irrigation Department or Soldier Settler Scheme.
Work was started on planting Lone Gum in 1917 and on Monash in 1919.
We transferred [to Monash] the next year, we all lived in tents next to Monroes
and Major Minagalls. There our gang was kept busy more or less sawing
pine poles and splitting into 1 foot pegs for the Monash planting. This was done
early the following winter by us, and then we were put on to planting the vines. I
may say that owing to the dry 1919, and dead cuttings, very few rooted and
blocks in Monash in the 1920 planting did not all have all rooted vines. About a
third of each block of 10 acres had rooted vines and two thirds were cuttings
from Renmark.40
Government Workers strike, 1919
Yesterday, August 4th, the Government employees at Lone Gum camp went on
strike for more wages and walking time which it appears they are not entitled
to according to their log. The men were given the opportunity of starting work
this morning, or taking their time. It is rumoured that five hundred men were
paid off this morning of refusing to start work. Some anxiety is felt as to the


Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.

Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.


Fruit blocks
outcome. Mr. Henwood of the Lime Kiln camp has closed his boarding house
and intends to keep it closed while the men are on strike.41
During the last week I was a visitor at Berri. I moved among the construction
camps at Lone Gum and Lime Kilns [Glossop], and gained authentic
information respecting the late strike. A few days before the strike some men
arrived from Broken Hill. Very soon they had engineered the strike. Officially as
far as the A.W.U. was concerned, there was no strike, although during their stay
in camp these I.W.W. [Industrial Workers of the World] agents had taken out
the A.W.U. ticket. They believed in direct action as opposed to arbitration. The
I.W.W. element persuaded the men at Lone Gum to come out. En masse one
night they marched to the lime kilns. They were refused entrance into the
Government dining hall by the A.W.U. representative. And, packing an open-air
meeting, they declared the strike on at the lime kilns. The ludicrous element
appears when on visiting the lime kilns we learned next day that though all the
men were out, only eleven of them were in favor of the strike. And over one
hundred men idle here. A large number were returned soldiers, and all of them
had been working in preparing land for soldier settlers. A gang of returned men
remained at their work. One camper told us that the lime kilns camp was a little
paradise before the I.W.W. element entered. What measures are the Government
adopting to protect the workers against this extreme section? Is the Returned
Soldiers' Association, from headquarters, doing anything for the industrial
soldier worker to shield him against the inroads of the I.W.W.? Lake Bonny and
Cobdogla refused to listen to the overtures of the Bolsheviks. At the Lime Kilns
some returned men got busy, and backed up by the A.W.U., a secret ballot was
taken. By an overwhelming majority they decided to return to work. Lone Gum
followed suit. And next day the men at Cadell came out of sympathy with the
strikers. They had not then heard that the strike had been smashed. Does the
Government know the names of the men responsible for the trouble? Some
Bolsheviks refused to stand up when at a concert the National Anthem was sung.
When appealed to, some, in utter disrespect to the returned men, refused to rise
when "God bless our splendid men" was sung. When they were engineering the
strike in their claptrap harangue, they openly and pitifully?? claimed for the
workers as they pass through the country equal rights, irrespective of the
marriage tie. The occasion calls for direct action on behalf of the Government.
August 6 will be known in the history of Berri as black Wednesday. A strike
was on, affecting hundreds of men. Men streamed from the camps into the hotel
at Berri. Berri has one resident policeman and a prison cell capable of holding
two men. Scores of drunken men were at large about the town. Brawls were the
order of the day. Why didnt the Government close the Berri hotel during the
strike? It is a dangerous task driving into the township at night from along the
line of march the men take to the camps. Every night drunken men can be seen
walking or lying along the roadside. On the evening of August 7, l8 were
counted to a mile. Two were run over by a motor cyclist. Women living along
the route experience a thing akin to a reign of terror. Does the Government
realise how the liberty of the subject is being interfered with? Let them appoint a
Commission to investigate how drink is reducing the working efficiency of the
men. Be it far from me to castigate all the men. Many desire release. Six
returned men are under the Inebriates Act. The writer met many men in the


Murray Pioneer, 5 Aug 1919.

Fruit blocks


camps, as good as gold, and as true as steel. It is high time something drastic
was done by ' the Government in the interests of the community and the returned
soldier who is to settle on the irrigation blocks, which are being prepared by the
camps of men. We were protected by the returned men against the inroads of
Prussian militarism; against Bolshevism and liquordom? I am, &c., P. H.
CHENNELL. Waikerie, August 9, 1919.42
Some felt the strike was caused by men from Broken Hill, members of the
militant union Industrial Workers of the World (I.W.W.), ignoring the wishes of
the majority of the men who belonged to the Australian Workers Union
(A.W.U.). An agreement was soon reached and the men were reinstated.
The strike of 1919 gave the work a set back and led to the formation of the
soldiers' scheme, which took over the preparation and planting of the blocks in
I learn from Mr V. Cock, officer-in-charge, that the following blocks at Berri
[Lone Gum] have been allocated to returned soldiers:44

L.A Bigg
W. T. Strahan
E. A Bottrill
T. W. Gainsborough
F.J. Pope
G. H. Willis
H. Beriman
P. B. Thomas
J. C. Deex
R. M. Hackett


L. S. Potts
B. Phelps
T. J. Barry
M. McDonald
C. F. Vogan
C. E Minagall
R. M. Kelly
J. Reed
R. W. McCreanor

It will be seen from this that some at any rate have been fortunate enough to
secure a few acres of the promised land and with the butter factory and bees as
profitable adjuncts they should soon be turning it into a land of milk and
Lone Gum is looking well, with its big stretch of green lucerne; houses are going
up at a good rate and fencing is in progress, the earlier planted vines have made
capital growth, and it was pleasing to see maize and other summer fodders
growing on some of the young blocks. There is still much channelling to be
done, and this is being rushed along.
The prospects at present are promising, the Jury brothers have a fine stack of hay
on their dry block - about 100 worth - cut from the irrigable portion of their
properties. They and Mr. [Lloyd] Bigg had astonishingly good hay crops, cutting
an equivalent of about 2 tons to the acre between rows. We found that all but a

Advertiser, 13 Aug 1919.

Murray Pioneer, 7 Mar 1924.
44 Source unknown.
45 Murray Pioneer, 4 Apr 1919.


Fruit blocks
few of the blocks opened for application at Lone Gum and around the back of
the distillery and at the Lime Kiln have been allotted now and that applications
have been received for blocks on the other side of the Morgan road that have not
yet been surveyed. There is a tremendous area here and a large township must
spring up on the site on the Morgan road. The time is not far distant now when
the stretch of mallee for several miles will have given place to the scores of
beautiful vineyards.46

By April 1920 work on Lone Gum was well underway.

Mr. A. Richardson, who has charge of the construction work proceeding in the
Lone Gum area, has had considerable experience in similar work along the
Murray, having spent over eight years at Mildura, Berri and other centres
preparing virgin lands for planting. Mr. Richardson hopes to complete Lone
Gum work by about June next [1921]. He already has 44 blocks all completed,
except for the construction of the underground tanks, and progress is now being
made at the rate of two a day. The house at No. 7 camp is nearing completion
and will be ready for planting gangs to enter shortly. On the eastern side of the
settlement ploughing and scooping operations are proceeding and most of the
grubbing is finished at the western end. About 100 acres near No. 7 camp will be
handed over to the planting gangs in about a month. The blocks at Lone Gum
are being made 11 acres in area; ten will be planted to vines and the other to
Although the general consensus was that blocks 15 acres were the optimum
size most of the Lone Gum blocks were around 24 acres.
The ideal block, 1920.
A block of fifteen acresin my opinion the ideal sized block for one manI
would divide as follows:
Space for one house, sheds, stable, and drying rack, 1 acre.
Lucerne paddock, 2 acres. The produce of 2 acres of lucerne, combined with
what hay could be grown between the rows of trees for the first few years,
would easily keep two horses and a cow the whole year around, thus saving
chaff merchants bills.
4 acres sultana vines, 4 acres deciduous trees (such as Moorpark apricots and
Elberta peaches, 4 acres Washington naval oranges.48


Murray Pioneer, 28 Nov 1919.

Pioneer, 10 Apr 1920.
48 Pioneer Irrigationists Manual No.1, leaflet No.1, F. R. Arndt, reprinted 1920.
47 Murray

Fruit blocks


The pumping plant raises 1,000,000 gallons an hour to a 90-foot level and
thence, up to 120 feet, whence it flows in large channels and eventually through
many smaller ones through the land, converting what was once a mallee desert
into a vista of-, green fruitfulness. The settlement is very prosperous, and is one
of the wonders of the River.
Monash or Lone Gum, is another large settlement, comprising 2,500 acres.
Glossop, another area has 2,000 acres. Both these are for returned men.
Construction camps at present, have these settlements in hand, Large numbers of
men are preparing the blocks and 80 per cent, of the blockers" are returned
men, who remain behind to live on the soil they have prepared.
The population will eventually reach the proportions of one person to an acre.
The extent to which ex-soldiers have settled in the Berri district is proved by the
fact that there are 600 men in the Returned Soldiers' Association.49
Whilst the experts recommended a balanced planting of vines, stone fruits and
citrus the reality was most blocks were planted almost entirely of vines. Grapes
were particularly attractive as they could produce crops in just 3 years after
planting and the demand for dried grapes was particularly strong resulting in
high market prices.
The Mail newspaper sent a reporter to the district in 1920.
Are you a Digger settler! the Mail man asked a small-statured man outside
whose humble homestead the car had pulled up. That's the only qualification
for here, Mr. H. Beriman replied. In September, 1918 I planted my block of
24 acres20 of vines and 4 of apricots and orangesand you see it to-day.
In February next year I shall be picking the first crop of grapes.
You like the life? It is the only life I've been used to, as I went to Mildura
when I was six years old. I am quite satisfied with the Government treatment,
and have no trouble of any kind.
Wheeling further along the roadway, fringed on each side by smiling little
orchards, the miniature cottage of a soldier clergyman is reached. The Rev. W.
T. Strahan was in charge of St. Jude's Anglican Church, Brighton, but he got the
"call" this time not the call of the Church but of the land. Capt. Chaplain
Strahan went into the campaign with the boys, and now he is sticking with them
in peace times on the soil. It was a tall sun-blackened, clean-shaven personality
that courteously greeted the Mail man. In the place of his clerical vestments
were a pair of honest moleskins, a navvy's shirt, and a cowboys sombrero, and
he looked the picture of happiness on his homely prairie.
Mr Strahan has 23 acres12 of vines, of oranges, and 6 of lucerne, but he is
going to supplant three or four acres of his lucerne with sultanas or gordos.
What made you leave the Church? the writer curiously enquired. Well, said
Mr. Strahan, one can't get along on 200 a year, and I have the future of my


Australian Christian Commonwealth, 4 Feb 1921.


Fruit blocks
three boys to think about. After next year I hope to be able to send them down to
"Have you experienced hardships? Oh, Mr. Strahan philosophically replied,
I have been eating lucerne for the past two years and feeding the family on it. It
will be my first picking this season, and things will be better then.
What have been your hours? From 4 in the morning until 12 at night, but I
am perfectly satisfied with the Government treatment. Mr. Strahan fondly
patted his horses, a pair of staunch, strong animals. I knew nothing about this
work, he added, until I came here, but these have been good friends. 50

Block sizes
Although irrigated fruit blocks had been established in Renmark as early as
1887 there was still much debate in 1920 regarding the optimum size of blocks.
Cost of Fruit Growing, 1920.
The idealsized oneman block, if a man with limited capacity is to make a
success of undertaking his holding, must no be larger than he can himself keep
in good order. It will be found in practice that a block of fifteen acres is just
about the right size for one man to manage. Of course, we often see men
managing holdings of 25 to 30 acres without outside help, but invariably we find
that such blocks are not receiving the attention they require.51
It was decided that the Central Agricultural Bureau be asked for expert
horticultural opinion upon this aspect of the Commissioners report:
Is it possible for any one man to work 20 acres economically?
Would not attempting to work 20 acres lower the standards of production?
Would not the quality of produce be seriously affected as well as the health of
the blocker be impaired in attempting to work 20 acres? 52
While the blocks at Lone Gum averaged about 24 acres the later blocks at
Monash were much smaller.
The question of the area of the blocks was down in the agenda under the name
of all the sub-branches represented. Mr. McCutcheon said that at Monash there
were some blocks of from five to seven acres. It was thought that possibility
they were being set aside for disabled men, but he did not think it in the best
interests of these men that they should be grouped together. It was resolved to
seek information concerning these small blocks.
The Berri, Lake Bonney and Waikerie delegates all considered that as a general
thing blocks allotted to soldiers should not be smaller than 15 acres. The policy
of the department had not been clearly stated in this matter, although Mr. Anstey
had said that the blocks [referring to Block E, Renmark] should range from 12 to


The Mail, 18 Dec 1920.

Pioneer Irrigationists Manual No.1, leaflet No.1, F. R. Arndt, reprinted 1920.
52 Murray Pioneer, 2 Dec 1927.

Fruit blocks


15 acres. It was resolved that the District Committee recommend that 15 acres
be the minimum area of blocks allocated to soldiers.53
In 1927 a meeting at Monash resolved the following points for submission to the
That one man not work more than 15 acres and that an additional 14 per acre
be allowed above 15 acres. That a settler with 20 acres or over be allowed an
additional horse.54
Returns per acre proved to be lower than expected and the smaller blocks were
quickly realised to be not economically viable. Michael Dwyer abandoned block
609 as it was too small, it was taken up by his neighbour, John Hurst, whose
block 610 was also too small. The merging of small blocks became a common
occurrence, particularly on the north side of the settlement. Once tractors
replaced horses settlers were able to manage much larger blocks.

Plant and equipment

In December 1927
Some Economic Aspects of Dried Fruit Production by Soldier Settlers A Barry
Renmark Dec 1926
Plant and equipment.
Trellising, 3-wire.
Underground tank, 10,000 gallons
Water service including 100 gallon overhead tank, hand pump, and piping
Four drying racks
Sweat boxes for dried fruit
Dip tins
30 cwt trolley
Plough - 10-inch complete with gauge wheel.
Cultivator - spring tooth complete including bursters
Disc - 8 plate x 16 complete
Harnesses - complete with long pole straps, chain traces, check reins
Tools - assorted comprising shovel, hoes, fork and blade, pick, crowbar, axe,
hammer, brace and two bits.
Manure sower - complete with plough attachment55


Murray Pioneer, 2 Apr 1920.

Murray Pioneer, 1927.
55 Murray Pioneer, Dec 1927.


Fruit blocks

Early map showing surveyed blocks in Lone Gum. Main irrigation channels are
shown as thick lines following the ridge lines. Land in Monash, north of the
Morgan road (at top), has not yet been surveyed. Shaded area at bottom right
indicates blocks in Berri ready for allocation. The single straight line relates to
an fence line of the original Cobdogla station.56


Murray Pioneer, 16 Jul 1914.

Fruit blocks


Map of Monash town and district showing road names, 2006. Colours indicate
land usage. www.atlas.sa.gov.au


Fruit blocks

Stump-grubbing on W. Mawby's block using the Threwella, Monash c1920.

State Library of South Australia.

Burning scrub to clear W. Mawby's block, Monash c1920.

State Library of South Australia B23112.


Fruit blocks

Group of Soldier settlers at Lone Gum, Rev. William Tait Strahan is front
row, third from left. Chronicle, 14 Feb 1920.

Tucker brothers tree-grubbing at Monash.

Photo published in Sunday Mail, 18 Dec 1920.




The challenges of drought, rain, frost, disease and depressed market prices
were shared by civilian and soldier blockers alike. Despite early enthusiasm
some soldier settlers found that they were not suited to life on the land and soon
left their blocks.

Royal Commission
The Berri [Irrigation Area] embraces a total area of 23,400 acres of land, of
which, approximately, 8,000 acres are irrigable. The number of settlers on
irrigable blocks are Civilians, 211, and discharged soldiers, 270. 57
Problems with the design and implementation of the soldier settler scheme were
self evident to those in the irrigation areas. The settlers lobbied for a hearing at
the state parliament and in 1925 the South Australian State House of Assembly
ordered a Royal Commission under Section 22 of the Irrigation Act of 1922. It
was to report on the complaints of the soldier settlers along the Murray River
regions, and the final report was printed on 28 October 1925.
Complaints were received from 197 individual settlers in the Berri area, and the
Commissions report thereon is included in the schedule of complaints. In
addition, a Committee representing the Berri soldier settlers lodged a complaint
in reference to the charges for improvements affected by the Irrigation
Department, the cost of houses erected by the Soldier Settlement Department,
and other subjects, and also gave evidence.58
The 197 complaints represented around 41% of the 211 civilian and 270 soldier
settlers but the majority of complaints came from those in the Soldier Settlement
Some of the first returned soldiers were trained in dairying and fruit growing.
The report of the 1925 Irrigation Royal Commission recommended
compensation be paid to fifteen Lone Gum settlers who had to abandon
It is now recognised that the endeavour to make of the Lone Gum soldier blocks
combined dairying and fruit growing propositions was foredoomed to failure,
nevertheless, were lucerne hay prized in South Australia as it is in some
countries (where it habitually commands a higher price than wheaten hay) the
lucerne patches at Lone gum should go far towards carrying the settlers over the
period of unproductivity in their vineyards. And just at present, I understand,
some of the lads are drawing very useful cheques (or credits) from the sale of
hay or green stuff for the teams now at Monash across the road. It is probable
that one or two men might make a decent living by dairying at Lone Gum,


Irrigation Royal Commission, Oct 1925.

Irrigation Royal Commission, Oct 1925.



devoting themselves wholly to this business; but the combination of cows and
fruit does not ordinarily work well.59
On a number of blocks in the Lone Gum area the Department planted about 6
acres of Lucerne with the object of encouraging the settlers to take up dairying
in conjunction with fruit growing. The butter factory, which was built in the
district was, however, not opened, and most of the settlers ploughed out the
portion of the lucerne and planted the area with vines.60
The Royal Commission report, and implementation of its recommendations
came too late for many. In 1925 and 1926 the number of soldier settlers leaving
their blocks reached a peak.
Soldier settlers disturbed by false and cruel rumours, 1925
Lately a good many rumours have been spread about that a large number of
soldier settlers are throwing up their holdings. It is true that there have recently
been five or six cases of transfer, but it is incorrect to say that many blocks have
been thrown up. In 1924 there was some talk, without foundation, of wholesale
surrendering of blocks. A prominent settler said on Friday last that he thought
the soldier had received a fair spin from the Government and that the chucking
up of blocks at the present stage of things would be a very foolish procedure.
That fruit-growing can be made to pay has been proved by several settlers, and it
has been noticed that these successful settlers in most cases have been supported
and sustained by the hearty co-operation of their wives. About 80 percent of the
success of pulling through a really hard time can be attributed to the attitude
taken up by the women folk. The Oh!, lets get one of these as soon as we can
sort of woman gradually gets a hard-working mans nerves until he chucks it ,
and sometimes her as well.61
Soldier settlers position at Monash, 1925
There is absolutely no foundation [Arthur Hunt said] for the rumour that large
numbers of returned men contemplate throwing up their blocks in the Monash
district. The yarn that furniture and goods are being removed from the holdings
is a myth, and I give it absolute denial. In this area, said Mr. Hunt, there is a
great feeling of hope among most of the settlers, and their watchword is stand
fast, and wait for the Commissions report. Mr. Hunt stated further that many
of the dried fruit returns this year were good and some settlers had harvested
crops of high quality fruit. There was no great feeling of unrest among them, and
all were getting ready to prune and clean up their blocks. The same remarks, he
said, applied to Lone Gum, but not to South Lone Gum.
Is there any truth in the rumour that a number of blocks have been thrown up?
was a question asked Mr. Hunt. He replied that several blocks had changed
hands, and in nearly every case the transfer was a desirable one. He considered
that there might possibly still be a little more weeding out to be done, and said

Murray Pioneer, 20 Feb 1920

Irrigation Royal Commission, Oct 1925.
61 Murray Pioneer, 23 May 1925.


that in every case where a soldier had worked a good block thoroughly he
believed he was on the right road to success.62

Twelve types of complaints were identified, eleven of these relating to

overcharging for clearing, ploughing, grading, fencing, trellis posts, planting,
tanks and houses. The final complaint was regarding interest payments on
loans. Each Individuals reasons for leaving the land varied considerably but
difficulties in making loan repayments was a common factor. A combination of
over valuing of blocks, overestimating income
Price of soldier blocks, 1925
In reference to price of soldier blocks per acre, one of the best civilian blocks in
the Berri district has just been sold at about forty pounds per acre, a block that
has been well worked and cultivated and is in full bearing planted mainly with
sultanas, the only fruit at present that is selling at rates that will cover the cost of
production. Soldier blocks, sad to relate, are planted mainly with other varieties,
and it is to be hoped that the commission will take this fact into consideration in
their final summing up.
It is a great pity that the Commission have not given their report yet, as good
men are continually leaving their blocks disheartened, and it is all nonsense to
say that they are leaving through other reasons, than the one important reason,
cost of blocks.63
The majority of settlers will not be able to meet their obligations for repayment
of advances under the terms and conditions laid down in the present regulations
under the Discharged Soldiers Settlement Act. Advances under the regulations
are made to soldier settlers under the following headings:
Sections A & B
Section C

For permanent improvements and buildings.

For stock and plant and other moveable items.
To provide food and clothing during the period that the
blocks are unproductive.

On account of the varying value of the advances as security the term of

repayment has been fixed for different periods as follows: Sections A and B, 44
years: Section C, 9 years: Sustenance, 12 years.
The charges for interest under the regulations are as follows: Sections A, B,
and CFirst year, nil; second year, 2 per cent.; third year, 3 per cent;: fourth
year, 5 per cent.; fifth year and thereafter, 6 per cent. SustenanceFive per cent.
over the whole period.
The above-mentioned provisions for repayments, which were designed to assist
the settler in the early period of his occupancy, have the effect of placing him in
a position of embarrassment in the fifth year, when owing to the fact that he is
unable to pay much, if anything, during the first four years, he has accumulated
considerable arrears, and in addition, the highest annual dues, so far as advances

Murray Pioneer, 30 May 1925.

Murray Pioneer, 31 Jul 1925.



are concerned, are in that year. At the period his block has not reached full
productivity, whereas ten years hence, when he should have become more
established and better able to meet added burdens, his annual dues would have
become less than half of the amount due in the fifth year. The difficulty in
regard to the accumulation of arrears over this unproductive period has given the
Commission anxious consideration. Requests were made by settlers to have the
written off, but the Commission does not consider that this would be a proper
The Commission recommended that repayments on all loans be amalgamated
and combined with water rates and rents the total debt be taken out against a
60 year mortgage on the property. The Commission also promised to write
down the value of soldier settler blocks in the Berri Irrigation Area by a total of
63,000, on average a reduction of around 10 per acre.
Mr Hackett
Mr Ferguson
Mr Polden
Jack Reed
Roy Kernot
Sid Ranford
Edward Clancy
Wesley Trotman

At Keswick hospital.
Left due to ill health, 1925.
Moved to Adelaide.
Left to work as a carpenter.
Working in Adelaide, 1925
Inherited farm at Kimba, 1925.
Moved to Adelaide,1925
Left in 1925
Joined police force, 1926.

Abandoned blocks opened up new possibilities for new settlers to move in, not
all were soldier settlers. In 1926 William Webber moved from his fruit property
at Loveday to a fruit block one mile south of the Monash store, thus forming the
beginning of a long association with the district.
In 1925 Roland Nancarrow and his wife moved to the settlement from Broken

The depression
The 1929 crop met the depression. From then on hardly any money came in to
Monash. Nearly everything went bung. Telephones, newspapers, motor
registrations, and even the Agricultural Bureau went out. The blocks were not
much worked or manured. What was the use it was said, for it cant be sold.
However, after six years of adding up debts like water rates, council rates and
other things that had to be paid with interest in due course there was a slight
lift in our affairs.65


Murray Pioneer, 6 Nov 1925.

Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.



Map showing original settler allocations. Colours indicate land usage in 2006.


Satellite photo of Monash township, Google Earth, February 2010.








The members of the Advisory Board of Agriculture were much interested,
during their inspection of Berri last week, in the workers' huts which have been
recently erected there in place of tents. There is quite a street of these little
houses, which are made of jarrah throughout and weather boarded. They are
constructed in sections, each side, the floor and roof being in one piece and are
easily erected or taken down and transported. the sections are fastened in
position by means of bolts and the floors are raised a few inches above the
ground. The dimensions are 12 x 9 [feet] and there are two beds in each hut. The
cost of one of these huts is said to be 35, as against 20 asked for one of the
bell tents generally used by government parties. Some of them doubtless will be
used by bachelor soldiers on their blocks, pending the erection of permanent
residences. They were designed, we believe, by Mr. Muspratt. The camp is not
without some conveniences. Water is pumped into some overhead tanks, whence
it is conveyed in pipes to points of vantage. 66
Lone Gum. March 6.
Since the allotting of the Monash blocks the new settlers have been arriving
weekly to take over their holdings, and many and varied are the temporary
dwellings erected by them until such time as more substantial houses are built on
the hew area. During the last week or so a supply of cubicles has come to hand,
and the settlers are availing themselves of the opportunity of securing a little
more comfort than tents, etc., can provide. It is hoped that the building
department will expedite the construction of permanent houses.67
Houses were mainly built of concrete in a cubicle fashion to prevent the
ravages of white ants. Similar types are to be found in the Winkie Soldier
Settlement and in Barmera and Glossop.
A shortage of concrete in 1919 led to many of the Government built houses in
Lone Gum being built of undressed limestone and mortar as stopgap
Very great difficulty has been experienced in procuring material for soldiers
residences, and the devoted gentleman who has the supervision of the building
work has been reduced almost to distraction by the disappointments and
perplexities of this task. The concrete houses at Lone Gum are no, for the most
part, of very inviting appearance. They have been rather severely criticized on
this ground, and not without some reason. But those we visited were nicely
finished inside and, for bachelors at any rate, make comfortable residences.
Certainly away in this respect of the average pioneers shanty. In cases where,
presumably the settler has been able to supplement the repatriation grant from
his own private sources, very decided architectural improvements have been
made to the current design. 68


Murray Pioneer, 17 Jan 1919

Murray Pioneer, 11 Mar 1921
68 Murray Pioneer, 13 Feb 1920



Mr G. W. Lane, the Government Inspector of Buildings, was on a visit in

connection with the erection of houses on the soldiers blocks. Quite a number
have been built or are in course of construction out at Lone Gum and more will
be started almost immediately. As I know there was a difference of opinion
about the style of house that has been adopted for these men, I asked Mr. Lane
wether it was necessary to have the regulation three room wide house, or wether
a soldiers wish to put up a building with a frontage of two rooms and one at the
rear would be respected. He said that so long as the cost was not greater he could
have his house built that way if he liked, in fact a soldier could have a ten
roomed house if he liked to pay the difference in cost of erection.69
House building is still going on merrily here and quite a lot of new cottages have
sprung up in a remarkably short space of time. Several of these are completed,
others need the "finishing touch", and many more are in course of erection. With
the exception of a few which are of stone, these cottages are built of concrete
and look very neat when finished. The original planwhich in several instances
has been departed fromwas for a cottage with a flat roof, containing three
rooms and a back verandah, a door back and front and a window in each end.
The walls are plastered on the inside and the ceiling is 3 ply. The cost of each is
approximately 250. This is really only the back of a househence the windows
in the ends. Somewhere in the future, when funds are more plentiful than at
present, the settler will probably add some additional rooms in front.70
A three roomed flat roofed house built of limestone mortar, with walls two foot
thick, was built on this land. Each room was 12 feet by 12 feet, consisting of a
kitchen, living room and bedroom.71
A small number of more substantial dressed-limestone houses were
constructed in the Monash region.
Speaking about the provision of soldiers' houses, Mr. McIntosh advised those
who were not actually married or those who were on the point of becoming so,
to go slow, and to erect just sufficient for their needs. "Wait till the bird is
caught before you get the cage" was his advice.72

Domestic water supply

Mr W. P. Henwood inspected the plans in June, 1921, and by September the
contract to build the water tank was let to Mr. Jordan. Monash had the first town
water supply in the Berri Irrigation Area. In January 1923 the first houses were
connected to the town water supply.
Inconvenience and extra work was caused by not having electricity, no water in
the kitchen and no septic system.73


Murray Pioneer, 21 Feb 1919.

Murray Pioneer, 31 Mar 1919.
71 Ian Sando memoirs, 2005.
72 Murray Pioneer, 15 Jun 1923.
73 Ian Sando, memoirs, 2005.



Houses outside the township were supplied water from underground concrete
tanks fed from the irrigation channels. Windmills were used to pump the water
to overhead storage tanks that could then gravity feed the taps in the house.
The water was straight from the river and not suitable for drinking. When the
river flow was high bath water would be an opaque brown colour even before
bathing. Water for drinking and cooking was provided by rain water tanks.
A new building and plant for chlorination of the town domestic water supply was
completed in 1965.74 In 1981 the replacement of the irrigation channels by
underground pipes also connected mains water to houses outside of the
Filtered water set to flow by 2008
The construction of pipelines to deliver filtered water to 17 Riverland and
Murraylands communities began last week. Funded through the State
Government's $50 million Country Water Quality Improvement Program, the
project will help ensure communities still receiving unfiltered River Murray
water have improved water quality by early 2008. The project includes two
components: New water treatment plants and new pipelines to deliver the water.
York Civil will construct [a pipeline] from the Glossop plant to Monash. 75

Electricity supply
There were no electrical appliances, no refrigerators, and no wirelesses. Some
people had primitive battery sets. To compensate for the lack of electric light we
used kerosene lights. We also had wood fires and a wood stove.76
Until 1932 electric light was unknown in Monash. That year Rowans set up their
own plant, from which light was generated for the institute in 1933. The big
district electricity scheme, which was begun in May, 1937, has now linked up
the whole of the Berri Irrigation Area with the Adelaide Electricity Trust. Today
[1953] most growers have electricity in their homes, and also make use of
electric power on their blocks for pumps and lighting up their drying greens,
Plans for Berri Councils electricity scheme were initiated in May 1937.


Murray Pioneer, 3 Jun 1965.

Murray Pioneer, 22 Jun 2007.
76 Ian Sando, memoirs, 2005
77 Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.



In response to your request I have investigated the proposal to supply and light
throughout your District and beg to report as follows.
The scheme provides for the extension of the transmission line from Spring Cart
Gully to Berri and the distribution of power throughout the Berri district, not
including the Town area. We estimate that the total cost of the scheme will not
exceed 13,500.
This sum provides for the construction of the whole of the lines necessary for
the supply of electricity right to the dwelling of every one of the 357 possible
The Alternating Current (AC) power was generated by the Renmark Irrigation
Trust. Lone Gum was connected in 1937 and Monash township the next year.
Monash 1937
The electric lighting scheme is progressing steadily, and the high tension lines
and other feeders have been completed. A start has been made with actual
wiring north of the Morgan road. The Lone Gum section is now using the
Power supply for township, 1938
Although the electric lighting scheme has supplied the houses of the settlement
for some time, the township of Monash itself has not had the power. The local
storekeeper, Mr. W. J. Rowan, has supplied power for the Institute and halls for
some years from his domestic plant, but this has become inadequate for the
demands placed upon it. The Berri District Council has now extended its mains
to the township and in addition to the halls and church being connected, an
installation has been made at the Monash School. Having the electric power
connected to the school will enable the use of cinema projectors, and it is
anticipated that a move in this direction will be made in the near future.80
District electrification, 1943
The Council is still busy with its electric light scheme. Tooravale Company is in
future to buy all of its electricity from the Council and will scrap its D.C. plant.
The Distillery is also installing extra A.C. motors, and we are planning to supply
electricity to the Engineering and Water Supply Department for the
Comprehensive Draining Scheme. It is expected that at least two more years will
elapse before the drainage scheme is in full operation.81
In 1948 the Berri District council supplemented its electricity supply from the
Renmark Irrigation Trust with power from the recently nationalised Electricity
Trust of South Australia (ETSA). This proved to be much more reliable supply
and in 1959 the Berri pumping station was converted to electrical operation.

Letter from Chief Engineer of Renmark Irrigation Trust, 17 June 1936.

Adelaide Advertiser, 16 Aug 1937.
80 Murray Pioneer, 9 May 1938
81 Letter to troops overseas, 24 Nov 1943.


Lights at Monash, 1954
Complaints have been received by the Berri Council that street lights at Monash
were burning not only all night, but sometimes all day as well. The Council
decided to install control clocks, as used in the Berri Township area.82



Electricity timeline
Monash store generates its own electricity.
Electricity extended to Institute building.
AC electricity sourced from Renmark Irrigation Trust.
Mains connected to halls, church and school.
First electric drainage pumps installed in Berri Irrigation Area.
Supplemental electricity sourced from Electricity Trust of South
Australia (ETSA).
Berri pumping station converted to electricity.
Completion of Murraylink 220MW Direct Current (DC) inter-connector
between Red Cliffs, Victoria and Monash, South Australia. The 177 km
underground cable is the longest high voltage underground cable system
in the world.

Berri Community news, c1954.



Ice chest, 1936
In 1936 Mum and Dad bought an ice chest. This was our first real luxury. The
ice was delivered several times a week, the ice factory being part of Tooravale.
If the weather was very hot and you ran out of ice, Stewart and Keith would ride
to Tooravale and bring a block of ice home. These blocks were enormous, much
larger than the ones I had seen in the city.83
In 1943 the Toora Vale factory distributed ice to Berri, Barmera, Monash,
Glossop, Winkie Cobdogla and Loveday.
The Toora Vale Ice Co. wish to announce that they will commence delivering to
Depots as from Friday, November 19th, 1943.
Rowans Store: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 6.45-7.15 a.m.
Dyers Corner: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 7.25-7:45 a.m.84

Frame from Tooravale cinema

advertisement c1934.
Australian national film and
Sound archive.

Frame from Tooravale cinema

advertisement c1934.
Australian national film and
Sound archive.


Ian Sando memoirs, 2005.

Murray Pioneer, 18 Nov 1943.



In late 1920 the lack of telephone facilities in the settlement became an issue of
great importance to the early settlers. Community groups and individuals rallied
to the cause and a coordinated campaign of letter writing and petitioning was
put into action.
In October 1920, Frank Monroe, secretary of The Lone Gum and Monash
Settlers Club wrote to the Deputy Post Master General in Adelaide with the
proposal that the Irrigation Department private telephone line be made into a
public telephone.
Three weeks later the Irrigation Department left the region, taking their
telephone with them, but the line remained. In November 1920 Frank Munroe
wrote to the Deputy Premiers office in Parliament house, Melbourne.
In further reference to my request for the taking over of the Telephone from the
Irrigation Dept & using it as a public Phone I beg to apprise you of the fact that
the Department people have now left this Area and the Phone has been removed
also although the Wire is still here. We settlers numbering about 40 of present
with 82 other Blocks being allocated during this month, are now without any
means of calling a Doctor or urgent communication of any kind with outside. To
procure a Doctor we must drive six miles to Berri, and only a few weeks ago a
lady gave birth to a child in a MotorCar not 50 yards from my own door on her
way to the Renmark Hospital. We cannot send a telegram without driving six
miles & we are placed at a tremendous disadvantage which a public Phone
would obviate.85
In February 1921 H. S. Taylor of the Murray Pioneer ran an article typical of his
commitment to the Riverland community.
Lone Gums isolation through lack of telephone or telegraphic communication
provides one of those causes which makes settlers hot with indignation when the
government or government departments are mentioned. It may be departmental
stupidity, it may be neglect, or it may be just sheer cussedness, which is
responsible, but whatever the reason it is hard to believe that any government
department containing anyone in authority with half a grain of commonsense
can allow it to continue. It cannot be a question of expense, Lone Gum is only a
few miles from Berri, and the telephone line which was used by the Irrigation
Department in the days of the construction camp remains, though the instrument
has been taken away. The settlers have asked to have this line connected with
the Post Office (a chain or so away) [20 metres] and an instrument installed. But
they have tried in vain, and the result is that except by road communication they
are completely isolated.
If the position were not so serious it would be funny. It sounds like comic opera
to listen to the itinerary of a telegram sent from Morgan to Lone Gum. The
message is telegraphed to Berri. At Berri it is put in the post for the remainder of


Letter dated 4 Nov 1920, held by National Archives of Australia



the journey. This means that it goes back to Morgan and then returns through
Berri, to Lone Gum!
Instance of the gravity of the position are not wanting. A little while ago a
woman was confined in a motor car on one of the roads in the settlement while
on the way to Renmark, and a word could not be conveyed to a doctor until a
settler had ridden horseback to Berri. Chum Hackett recently met with a
serious accident, having his lung pierced by a plough handle, and a medical aid
could not be obtained until he reached Renmark. The wife of one settler, Mr.
Barry, lies at deaths door in the Renmark Hospital, and for weeks Mr. Barry has
had to journey to Berri every morning to find out if she is still alive.
And all the while the wind hums mockingly through the idle wires overhead.86
Unknown to the settlers the Post Master General department (P.M.G.) had
already done costings in December 1920 and, based on an annual prediction of
1250 outgoing calls, 420 incoming calls, 300 outgoing telegrams and 300
incoming telegrams, found that the proposal was 1.15.2 in surplus.
The proposal is financially sound at the outset. I therefore recommend that the
papers be referred to the Accountant re funds and upon completion of the
purchase of the line from the State Department the Federal Member, for the
Hon. Sec Lone Gum Sub-Branch R.S.A. and the Hon. Sec. for Lone Gum and
Monash Settlers Club be informed that approval has been given for the
provision of telegraph (worked by telephone) and trunk line facilities at the Lone
Gum post office, adding that the work will be put in hand as early as
The old Irrigation Department line was extended to the Post Office and the first
telephone was installed in March 1921.88 A public telephone box was installed in
By March 1927 there were 58 telephones installed throughout homes in
Monash, all connected to the Berri exchange.89 Demand for telephones was
increasing and a telephone exchange was planned serving a predicted 191
subscribers in Monash, Lone Gum and part of the Glossop area. The Lone Gum
exchange was installed on 1 Sep 1927 providing a continuous telephone
service. Mina Webber from worked for a time as an operator at the exchange at
the Monash store.
The Monash rural automated exchange was installed in 1954-55. When the
same system was installed in Berri in May 1958 it was described as such:
A new telephone system came into operation at Berri on Saturday morning, May
24th, when a change-over was effected from the magneto manual working
telephones to the central battery manual working type recently installed by
technicians in the area. Explaining the new set-up, Mr. H. C. Bail, district

Murray Pioneer, 18 Feb 1921

PMG district inspectors report , 22 Dec 1920, held by National Archives of Australia.
88 Murray Pioneer, 13 Mar 1921.
89 PMG. report, 24 Mar 1927, National Archives of Australia.


telephone officer from Murray Bridge, asked subscribers to refrain from using
the generator handles of their original phones until technicians could change the
sets in the next few days. Mr. Bail said that the new system had many
advantages over the old, one of these being that the subscriber did not have a
battery and magneto box near the phone and that the exchange could be raised
by simply lifting the receiver. Mr. Bail warned that people must not leave the
receiver off the hook, as this would give the telephonist the engaged signal, also
when the phone was dusted care should be taken to keep the handset in position
and at all times the handset must be placed correctly on the hook.90


Telephone timeline
First telephone installed at Monash Store via Berri exchange.
Lone Gum exchange installed providing continuous connection.
Automated exchange installed at Monash.
Six digit telephone numbers beginning with 835.

The Lone Gum and Monash Settlers Club, 1920

The hon. R W Foster M.P.
Parliament House, Melbourne
Sir, in further reference to my request for the taking over of
the Telephone from the Irrigation Dept. & using it as a public Phone I beg to
apprise you of the fact that the Department people have now left this area and
the phone has been removed also although the wire is still here.
We settlers numbering about 40 of present with 82 Other Blocks being allocated
during this month, are now without any means of calling a Doctor or urgent
communication of any kind with outside. To procure a Doctor we must drive six
miles to Berri, and only a few weeks ago a lady gave birth to a child in a Motor
Car not 50 yards from my own door on her way to the Renmark Hospital.
We cannot send a telegram without driving six miles & we are placed at a
tremendous disadvantage which a public Phone would obviate. Trusting you will
not permit us to suffer this state of things for long, I remain yours Faithfully, F
Munroe Hon Sec.91


Berri Community News, 5 Jun 1958.

Letter, 4 Nov 1920.



Soldier Settlement Lone Gum, Via Morgan, 1921

To the Postmaster General, GPO Adelaide
Dear Sir, we of Lone Gum and Monash, intoxicated with the idea of cottage
hospitals, motor ambulances, district nurses etc etc, for the well being of our
own sick soldiers settlers, to say nothing of the promises made to prospective
mothers on the settlement, have just awoke to the fact that these promises will
not eventuate in our time; and that not only have we no hospital nearer than
sixteen miles, but no telephone communications nearer our township (Monash)
than five or six miles.
The telephone was laid on to Monash for the Irrigation Department & was used
by settlers until a few months ago, when the telephone became out of order,
being a private line & not needed by the Irrigation Department, whom I believe
issued orders that no message was to be taken or received by their employees.
Since then we have officially asked for the telephone to be made a public one &
removed to the post office at Monash a distance of a few hundred feet. As the
months go by, & no telephone is installed, I write to beg you personally to help
If you have ever experienced yourself, the terror of your loved ones being
dangerously sick & no doctor or telephone within a reasonable distance you will
hasten on the request I make to you - that without unnecessary delay we have
telephone communication with a day & night exchange, to be enabled at all
times to get a doctor or a hired car (per telephone) to take our sick people to the
nearest Hospital (Renmark). On behalf of the sick & helpless ones, yours
desperately, from Mrs C F Minagall, C Minagall.92
Lone Gum March 2nd 1921
To the Deputy Post Master
Dear Sir,
I beg to inform you that wires for a telephone have been connected to this office
& and instrument left disconnected in the office the matter having now
apparently become hung up and the cause being anxious by inquired into by
many of the settlers for this reason I would be pleased of any information in
regard to this matter as I of course have had no instructions and as I am now
permanently in attendance of the office I would be glad to know what are my
duties & responsibilities in regard to the conducting of this telephone which it is
evidently intended to be connected to this Post Office.
Thanking you in anticipation, yours obediently. Arthur Hunt.93


Letter, 29 Jan 1921.

Letter, 2 Mar 1921.



Robert M. Kelly
F. Chas Vogan
John S. Carlyon
Effie Carlyon
Stanley R. McLaren
Jack C. Deex
Reginald Russell
P. Reed?
John G. Potts
Arnold Sando
George Williams

Frank Munroe
Frank A. Bollenhagen
George P. Fisher
William Thamm
Edward A. Bottrill
Malcolm Macdonald
Leonard Evans
Hector R. Pryor
Dorothy M. Smith
George Harris
John Reed
Jack Deex
Sydney J. Ranford
Roy Kernot

We the Returned Settlers and Residents of
Lone Gum and Monash do humbly request
that telephone communication be made to
the town of Monash and would point out
that the line is erected and only needs the
installation of a Phone in the Post Office.

Edwin H. Kernot Amos J. Cook

Joseph H. Brown
W. Lock?
Margaret Munroe
Arthur Wright
John S. Jury
Darcy Jury
Lawrence S Potts
Roy W. McCreanor
Phillip B. Thomas
Daisy Cook
Evelyn Henwood
Benjamin Phelps

Petition of Monash residents, 192194. The name of the town is erroneously spelt
Monasch. Sir John Monashs Polish grandfather changed his family name from
Monasch to Monash.


Petition, receipt stamp dated 8 Feb, 1921, National Archives of Australia



Monash, 1929
Test cricket had its effects throughout the country districts as well as the town.
There were quite a few who were able to arrange a trip to the city during the test
match week [Australia versus England]. There were many of those who
remained at home seated in the vicinity of the wireless cabinet. The broadcasting
of the cricket matches has become of great interest this season and with the
progress of the fourth test match the wireless receiver was the first favourite
throughout the week [England won by 12 runs].95

20 Nov 1924
24 Feb 1925
31 July 1967

Radio timeline
80.1 FM
93.1 FM
Life FM
100.7 FM
155.7 AM


20 Jan 1971
26 Nov 1976


Murray Pioneer, Feb 1929.

Television timeline
(merger with RTS 5A)



Monash settler's
concrete house, 1919.
State Library of South
Australia B22943.

Settler's limestone house

built by Government as
stopgap accommodation,
State Library of South
Australia, B22947.

Settler's limestone house

on the Renmark Road,
State Library of South
Australia, B22952.


Sir John Monash, c1919.

State Library of Victoria.

Major-General Sir John Monash.

Order of the Bath (K.C.B.),
Volunteer Decoration (V.D.)
Photo by Elliott & Fry.




Monash township was surveyed in August 1920 and proclaimed on 25 Aug
Town of Monash. Comprising that portion of Berri Irrigation Area, county of
Hamley, bounded as follows:- Commencing at the south-east corner of the
irrigation block 667, Berri Irrigation Area; thence southerly by the production of
the eastern boundary of said block for 3 chains; thence easterly at right angles
for 2,350 links; thence northerly at right angles for 1,1510 links; thence westerly
at right angles for 820 links; thence northerly at right angles for 630 links;
thence westerly at right angles for 280 links; thence northerly at a north eastern
angle of 104 02 for 1,225 links; and thence southerly at right angles for 1,940
links to the point of commencement.96
The township of Monash, named after the Australian Commander-in-Chief, is
on the Morgan-Renmark-road, and it is the northernmost part of the Berri area.
Someday it will be a thriving place, for a wide area has been cleared round the
nucleus of the coming centre. The only buildings erected are a big school room,
a hall which is occasionally used as a church, and a store. They are all sightly
[General Monash was] one of Australia's most distinguished soldiers during the
First World War. During his Army career, General Monash was Colonel
Commanding the 13th Infantry Brigade of the Citizen Forces, Commander of
the 4th Infantry Brigade at Gallipoli, Commander of the 3rd Australian Division
in France 1916-1918 and Commander of the Australian Corps from 31 May
1918 until after the Armistice.98
Sir John Monash lived in Victoria and never visited the South Australian town
named in his honour. When invited to visit the town he declined but graciously
donated a framed self portrait and a piano to the settlers.
The neighbouring soldier settler town of Glossop was proclaimed on the same
day as Monash, being named in honour of Commodore John Collings Taswell
Glossop (Royal Navy), formerly captain of HMAS SYDNEY. Under the
captaincy of Glossop the Sydney was responsible for the sinking of the German
cruiser SMS EMDEN near Cocos Islands in World War I.


The South Australian Government Gazette, 25 Aug 1925.

The Advertiser, 14 July, 1921.
98 Australian War Memorial, Canberra.



Preparing irrigable land for soldiers.

The main channel which is to serve the land between Berri and Renmark is
being is being put down, and it is reported that in honor of Sir John Monash and
Captain Glossop, who was in command of the Sydney when she destroyed the
Emden, two townships have been laid out within the Berri area, and have been
named after the gentlemen mentioned.99

Road names
The town streets and terraces were named after soldiers who were killed in
action during World War I, and whose names appear on the Renmark honour
roll. In the 1950s soldiers from Monash who died in World War II were
honoured with street names in north Berri (refer appendix ii).


Adelaide Advertiser, 5 Sep 1919.



Map of Monash township showing street names and block numbers, c1920s.
National Library of Australia, nla_map-rm2737-227-v.jpg
Government land is indicated by an arrow symbol.
Blocks 19-23 and the adjoining lane were incorporated into the school site.




Angove Tce.

Corney St.

Delatour Tce.

Fenwick Tce.

Jackson St.
Madison Ave.

Randell Tce.

2nd Lieutenant Edward L. ANGOVE, 10th Battalion,

died age 34 at Luc Wood near Proyart, France on 23
Aug 1918. Born Mildenhall, Sussex, England.
Lance Corporal James A. CORNEY, 43rd Battalion,
Machine Gun section, died age 19 at Messines,
Belgium, 6 Jul 1917.
Sergeant Edgar F. De LAUTOUR, 3rd Light Horse
Regiment, A Squadron, died age 29, at Gallipoli on 23
May 1915. Spelt deLauteur on Renmark honour roll.
Private William Ernest FENWICK, 48th Battalion, died of
wounds, age 28, in Belgium on 15 Aug 1917. He was
born in Durham, England and had been living at
Renmark. His name appears as E. Fenwick on the
Renmark honour roll.
Lance Corporal Albert H. JACKSON, 10th Battalion,
died age 26, in Belgium on 2 Oct 1917.
Private Walter S. MADDISON, 27th Battalion,
died age 19, in Belgium on 20 Sep 1917. Note spelling
variation in street name.
Sergeant Cosma L. RANDELL, 22nd Squadron Royal
Flying Corp, died age 23, in France on 23 Aug 1917.

Road names for Monash, c1950s.

The Berri District Council has decided to accept the suggestions from the
Monash Progress Association to name roads in the Lone Gum and Monash area.
The Progress Association has submitted a plan to the council which provides for
roads in the area to be called after early pioneers of the district, and descriptional
names. Pioneer names to be used include Nielsen, Whitelaw, Johanson,
Trenamann, Morrison; descriptional names, Central Road, Ridge Road,
and so on.100
Bigg road
Bollenhagen road
Brown road
Cook road
Crossing road
Ellis road
Fundak road
Golledge road
Hallam road
Harding road
Heward road


Lloyd Atkinson Bigg

Gustav Adolph Bollenhagen
Joseph Harold Brown
Amos John Cook
Errol Roy William Crossing
Walter Norman Ellis
Stevan Fundak
Ernest A Golledge
Arthur Hallam
Ernest Francis Harding
Amos Harvey Jack Heward

Berri Community News, 17 Feb 1950s?.


Hoskin road
Johanson road
Jury road

Albert John Hoskin

Andrew C Johanson
Edward Allen Jury
Darcy Jury
John Stuart Jury
L H Maddern road Laurice Hedley Maddern
Morrison road
James Norman McFarlane Morison
(note spelling variation)
Mortimer road
Alfred Bernard Mortimer
Muller road
William George French Muller
Alexander Oswald Muller
Laurance Raymond Muller
Jock Frederick Walter Muller
Mutton road
Jack Rowan Kemp Mutton
Nielsen road
Rudolph Nielsen
Nixon road
Francis Horace Nixon
Rosslyn Wright Nixon.
Soderberg road
Albert John Soderberg
Stratman road
Leonard Stratman
Telfer road
Reginald Thomas Grantley Telfer
Thomas road
Phillip Benjamin Thomas
Warnecke road
Clarence Clive Warnecke
Webber road
William Thomas Webber
Whitelaw road
Edward Roy Whitelaw
Wright road
William Amos Wright

The first place actually built in Monash was the boarding house, which today
(1953) is the nucleus of the Buffalo Lodge Hall.101
The first house in the Monash township was attached to the store. The first
stand-alone house built was that of Iva Frick, just west of the packing shed and
store. Many early settlers built make shift homes out of bags and the north west
corner of town was called bag town. In the late 1930s Adlogh Wagenknecht
built the first stone house in the town102.
By July 1925 the town consisted of six buildings the Institute, school,
blacksmith shop, general store, packing shed and Methodist Church.103
The Government Gazette, 3 November 1927, announced the release of eleven
town allotments, five residential and six businesses.


Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.

Ian Sando, interview.
103 Murray Pioneer, 1925.





Aerial photograph of Monash township looking north west, 1933.

Grant Telfer collection.
Row A: Methodist church (right).
Row B: Houses.
Row C: Anglican church buildings, Hall (far right).
Row D: Institute (right).
Row E: Fricks house, packing sheds, Rowans residence and store.

Perspective map of Monash township looking north, 2006.




Mr. H. Berimans house and

block at Lone Gum.
Observer, 1 Jul 1922.

Monash house.
Observer, 15 Oct 1927.

Disused settlers house,

limestone and brick construction,
Whitelaw road, 8 August 2002.



Monash store (left) with cellar being dug in foreground, c Jan 1920. Photo
by C.W. Till and first published in The Chronicle, 14 Feb 1920.
State Library of South Australia image, B23110.

First Monash post office, 1920.

Monash Post Office date stamp

cancellation, 19 Oct 1940.
State library of South Australia.



Monash Store looking south with Arthur Hunt at far right, c1922.
Mona Revell collection.

Monash Store looking west with Arthur Hunt at far right, c1922.
Mona Revell collection.


Monash Store looking north-east, c1925, Mona Revell collection.

Monash store, 2005. Authors collection.




The second hall was transported from

North Lake (Barmera) and erected in
1927. Pictured here in 1933.
Grant Telfer collection.

Third hall, completed 1939, pictured c1944. Photo by Mollie Sando.

Hall interior, August 2002.

Photo by author.



The Monash store was established in 1920 by Tom Hixon who, like the
blockers, was a returned soldier. The store was discovered to be in the middle
of a surveyed road and was relocated a small distance to its present site on the
corner of Madison Road and Randell Terrace.
"A year later [Tom Hixon] told me why he had to leave. He was a returned
soldier but not a blocker. As he had to get his groceries etc. from the river boat
at Berri, and sometimes Renmark, he needed a horse and dray, but the
Government wouldnt lend him the money to buy one. So he got things brought
out to him that were more readily saleable to the workers on the clearing and
channel construction. This was medicated wine and it sold fast. Soon the
foreman was complaining that the men were drinking too hard and not coming
to work. This went on till the government Department decided to put poor Tom
off by cancelling his Annual Leave, and that was that. 104
In March 1921 Arthur Hunt took over the store and ran and advertisement
I, Arthur Hunt, having purchased the [grocery business at Lone Gum], desire to
notify the settlers of Lone Gum and Monash, that I intend to conduct the grocery
store and post and telegraph office in such a manner as to guarantee satisfaction
to all present and intending settlers.105
In 1924 Arthurs brother Bill Hunt managed the running of the store. Arthur
continued to live in the house at the back of the store.106
Mr Hunt further stated that he was about to demonstrate his faith in the area by
erecting a large and modern general store at Monash, and proposed to start work
on it in a week or two.107
On 27 June 1925 Arthur Hunt advertised the store for sale or lease however
construction of the new store went ahead as planned.
Things are moving in the centre of the settlement and the mass of timber and
iron is gradually become something like shape. The new store will be a decided
addition to the district.108


Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.

Murray Pioneer, advertisement dated 12 Mar 1921
106 Murray Pioneer, 10 Feb 1924
107 Murray Pioneer, 6 Jun 1925.
108 Murray Pioneer, 11 Sep 1925.


The new store is quite an acquisition to the district and should prove to the
district a great convenience when completed. Things seem to have been moving
ahead the last few days and by the end of the week it seems as if the new store
and post office will be open for business. Mr. [Joe] Rowan, the new storekeeper,
has soon settled down and made himself at home in our midst.109

Arthur Hunt passed over the operation of the store to his brother-in-law Joseph
Joe Rowan in late 1925. A seven foot wide verandah was added to the new
store. In November Arthurs second child, Mona, was born in the house
attached to the store.
Joes son Malcolm Rowan assisted in the running of the store and it was
intended that he would one day take it over. War intervened and when Malcolm
enlisted in the RAAF in June 1943 the range of services offered at the store had
to be reduced. After running the store for 20 years Joe Rowan sold the business
to his son Malcolm, who took control in September 1945.
M. C. Rowan desires to inform the people of Monash that he has acquired the
business of his father, Mr. W. J. Rowan, as from the 30th September and he
would like to appeal to the people of this district for a continuity of their loyalty
and service and he hopes at an early date to make an announcement of the reopening of the MONASH PROVISION STORE where you can be assured of
To take effect in the first week in February Mr. And Mrs. Jim Green have sold
the Monash Provision Store. We all join to wish Jim and Ethel all the best in
their new venture.111


Murray Pioneer, 16 Oct 1925.

Murray Pioneer, Sep 1945.
111 Berri Community News, 2 Feb 1961.


1925Sep 1945
Oct 19451956
1956Feb 1961



Tom Marsh Hixon
Arthur Hunt
Bill Hunt
William JOE Rowan
Malcolm Charles Rowan
Jim M & Ethel Green
Tony & Betty Fundak
D Sullivan
Peter & Trish Sawyer
Alan & Flo Haggerty
Barry & Pat Hondow
Wayne & Jan Barnett
Graham & Anne Verrall

Partially based on notes from Grant Telfer.




Post office
The Lone Gum Post office was established on 1 June 1919 by William Bertram
and was located on the site of the present day tennis courts. In August 1920 the
Post Office was incorporated into the store and managed by the storekeeper.
The meeting had been convened for the purpose of appointing some responsible
person to take charge of the post office when Mr. Bertram retires, which he
intends to do shortly. The matter of the Post Office was then freely discussed,
and Mr. Hixon, the local storekeeper, was appointed to the position. Mr. Hixon
expressed his willingness to carry out the duties of postmaster.113
The township of Monash was proclaimed in August 1921 but it took nearly
seven years before the Post Office was renamed Monash in April 1928.
Most of the local bodies have adopted the joint names of Lone Gum and Monash
and some time ago it was suggested that the name of the post office should be
altered accordingly. The matter was put before the Deputy Post Master General
(Mr. Kitto) who, it is understood, intended to make the alteration, the post office
stamp there to be altered to Lone Gum and Monash. This no doubt, if done,
would simplify matters and it is to be hoped something more will be heard of it.
Sentiment keeps Lone Gum, Lone Gum, and Monash, Monash but we are all of
the same settlement, settlers of Lone Gum and Monash.114
From time to time confusion occurs over the names of the settlement, even in
official circles. The land south of the Morgan road will always be Lone Gum to
the settlers there and likewise the northern side will always bear the name of
Monashyet the whole settlement is really one. Most of the local bodies have
adopted the joint names of Lone Gum and Monash and some time ago it was
suggested that the name of the post office should be altered accordingly. The
matter was put before the Deputy Post Master General (Mr. Kitto) who, it is
understood, intended to make the alteration, the post office stamp there to be
altered to Lone Gum and Monash. This no doubt, if done, would simplify
matters and it is to be hoped something more will be heard of it. Sentiment
keeps Lone Gum, Lone Gum, and Monash, Monash but we are all of the same
settlement, settlers of Lone Gum and Monash.
Word has been received that the name of the local Post Office will be changed
from Lone Gum to Monash as from April 1, 1928. This comes as a result of the
petition of the Lone Gum and Monash Sub-branch of the R.S.A. which was
forwarded to the Deputy Post Master General some time ago. It was generally
realized that the old name was really not correct and several instances of
misunderstandings and inconveniences as a result of the confusion of the two
names were heard of.
The settlement has always been officially known as Monash, although the
sentiment for a long time carried the name of Lone Gum along and the Post
Office itself had not amended its name since the days of the old Lone Gum

Murray Pioneer, 29 Aug 1920.

Murray Pioneer, 16 Jan 1925.



Camp Post Office. The members of the Local R.S.A. realizing that their
settlement was named after their great leader, Lieut. General Sir John Monash,
desired that the whole matter should be correct. The notification of the alteration
will be welcomed.115
The name of the local Post Office will be changed from Lone Gum to Monash as
from April 1, 1928. It was generally realized that the old name was not really
correct and several instances of misunderstandings and inconveniences as a
result of the confusion of the two names were heard of. The settlement has
always been officially known as Monash, although sentiment for a long time
carried the name of Lone Gum along and the Post Office itself had not amended
its name since the days of the old Lone Gum Camp Post Office.116
In December 1920 three mail runs per week were provided via the Morgan
Renmark mail run. During the 1920s the Post Office was a critical
communication lifeline and the community fought to and improve and retain
postal services. H. S. Taylor, editor of the Murray Pioneer, was an influential
supporter of the blockers.
The mail service between Renmark and Lone Gum and Monash provides one of
the most ridiculous anomalies imaginable. The distance is about 14 miles, yet
the mails are carried straight past Lone Gum and Monash to Morgan 60 miles
further on, resorted, and returned next day! This means that a letter to be sent 14
miles has to be carried about 150 miles. And this in spite of the fact that about
half a dozen cars run regularly from Renmark through Lone Gum, and the letter
will reach the addressee before a communication posted at Renmark at the same
time. Is a more stupid arrangement possible?117
In 1923 the Post Office introduced Money Order facilities, a branch of the
Commonwealth Savings Bank and the provision of a telephone box.118
It is interesting to know that as far as mails are concerned this last Christmas
mail has been a record one for the settlement. There were five bags inward and
the outward mail took up three full bags. Even mails seem to tell their story.
When there were so many single folk on the settlement the mail bag was not
quite so full as now when the proportions have been reversed. The womenfolk, it
appears, do most of the writing. Writing is next to talking, they say!119


Murray Pioneer, 28 Feb 1928

Murray Pioneer, ?
117 H. S. Taylor, Murray Pioneer, 1920s.
118 Murray Pioneer, 11 May 1923.
119 Murray Pioneer, 16 Jan 1925.



The Post Office provided a community service that telephones could not fully
For many years the daily paper and mail (letters) arrived around 6 o'clock in the
evening. Most people gathered at the General Store and waited for the letters to
be sorted. It was quite a social occasion, all the latest news (and scandal) was
traded at this time.120
In 1931 the Monash Post Office restored its daily mail service.
Mail arrangements in Berri district, 1947
Our appeal for a better service is due to the fact, that for three days each week,
the mail comes via Morgan, thence per Pendle to Berri, Arriving at Monash
through local contractor, at approx. 4.30 p.m. which is satisfactory, but on the
other three days it comes via Tailem Bend and Renmark to Berri, and owing to
the most uncertain arrival of this train at Berri nobody knows what time the mail
or papers will arrive at Monash. As a result many of the settlers now have to put
a phone call through to the Post Office at Monash to know when the mail is
likely to arrive with the now usual reply that the train is an hour and often more
late, meaning 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. and sometimes later, before the mail is available.
Then it is only due to courtesy of the postmaster in being willing to sort the mail
at that hour that the mail is available, and large numbers of settlers, or their
children, can be seen on any of these nights, waiting in the wet and cold to take
delivery of their mail and papers. This in view of the facilities available is a
shocking state of affairs.121


Ian Sando, memoirs, 2005.

Letter from Councillor Arthur Hunt, Murray Pioneer, 7 Aug 1947.



The first recreation hall in Monash was located on the south east corner of
Madison road and Jackson street. Up until 1923 the old wooden building had
been used as the first school room. When a new hall was erected in 1927 the
first hall became the Institute Building.
The second building, the R.S.A. Hall, was transported from the North Lake
(Barmera) by the R.S.A. members and re-erected at Monash in 1927. The hall
was originally one of the large mess huts at North Lake, and after careful
examination it was seen that it was possible to take out the interior fittings and
make the building into one large hall with ante rooms on either side. When
completed it will measure 60 ft. x 30 ft. and will give a clear floor space of
approximately 50 ft. x 30 ft. the remainder being taken up by the stage and the
two ante rooms on either side. The floor itself is having special attention so as to
provide for dancing. The walls will be lined part of the way with timber and the
remainder will be finished off in Hessian, for the time being.
The hall was purchased as it stood at North Lake, and on the removal to its new
site a very fine record was accomplished. The parts were all numbered prior to
taking down; then within eight hours the whole building was taken to pieces and
carted to Monash on Thursday, December 9th. Thirty men with 14 trollies and
two motor lorries did the work. By 10:30 in the morning the roof of the building,
containing approximately 2 tons of iron, was off and by 2 p.m. the whole
building was down and loaded on the trollies. The party then had a dip in the
Lake and made off back and unloaded their trollies at the site of the new
building at Block 18, Monash.122
The second hall was officially opened on 6 July 1927. The third, and current,
hall was completed in 1939. The foundation stone was laid on 3 September 1939
by Mr. W. MacGillivray, M.P., in place of the Premier Mr. Playford, who was
recalled from Berri because of the declaration of war that same day.
At a special meeting of subscribers of the Lone Gum and Monash Institute, held
in the Institute Building, a proposal to build a new hall at Monash was
discussed. The following motion was carried unanimously That this meeting
of the subscribers of the Lone Gum and Monash Institute is favourable ina
proposal to erect a building on the institute property subject to the Act, and
authorises the committee to make further negotiations. 123
As the stage curtains were drawn aside the proceedings were commenced with
the singing of the National Anthem. The president of the New Hall Sub
Committee, Mr. R. W. Nixon, briefly outlined the stages which led up to the
erection of the new hall, and again stressed the value of the work done by the
Ladies' New Hall Guide, who had by their endeavours hastened this realization
of the wish of many years. He expressed the appreciation of his committee to all
those who had shown their interest by their attendance, and trusted that many
happy occasions would be spent in the building. owing to the international

Murray Pioneer, 25 Jan 1927.

Adelaide Advertiser, 27 May 1938.


situation at the time of the laying of the foundation stone, the Premier found it
necessary to return to the Premier found it necessary to return to the city a few
hours before the ceremony was to have taken place, but in asking Mr.
Macgillivray, M.P., to deputize for him, had expressed his desire to be present at
the opening ceremony. unfortunately that also had been impossible owing to
duties of State and so, Mr. Nixon said, it had been the unanimous wish of his
committee that Mr. Macgillivray should be asked to perform the ceremony , and
that it was his pleasing duty to formally make the request.
Memorial to the Spirit of Settlers
Mr. Macgillivray spoke of the two halls which had served the district in the past.
The first was erected by the Irrigation Department in the Lone Gum camp days
at a spot within a few feet of the present building. This was later demolished and
sold by the department. The second building, the R.S.A. Hall, had been
transported from the North Lake by the R.S.A. members and re-erected at
Monash. It was from the first always regarded as a temporary building, but had
served the settlement well for a number years. In the new hall it was well to
remember that a district had not only catered for the physical but also the
educational side, he said. The hall would be a lasting memorial to the spirit of
the settlers of the district. He congratulated the settlers of Monash and Lone
Gum on the completion after seven years in the waiting, of such a fine structure,
and declared the hall open.
Attendance Biggest Yet.
Ted Thomas and his Dance Band provided excellent music throughout the
evening, while Mr. W. R. Henwood was M.C. The supper arrangements, in spite
of the large numbers, were well carried out by the ladies of the district. The
attendance was the largest yet experienced at Monash over 360 being present,
and particularly pleasing was the representation from all parts of the districts
surrounding. The door takings exceeded 40, which was very encouraging to the
The New Building
The new building is of stone, with buff coloured facings, and measures overall
72ft. x 42ft. Original plans provided for two rooms and a projector room in front
of the present hall, but for the time being these have been dispensed with. The
main hall measures 50ft. x 40ft. with a stage 21ft. 6ins x 15ft. and has a dressing
room on either side of the stage. At the rear is provided a kitchen and a supper
room. The interior has been finished in deep cream medusa and has a dado of
fawn coloured snowcrete round the base. The ceiling and stage facings are of
Donnacona, this being chosen on account of acoustic properties. The lighting of
the main hall is by four crystal base units which tone in beautifully with the
general appearance. The main seating accommodation is served with tip-seats
arranged in series of fours. Decorations have been carried out in tonings to
match the walls, while the windows, which are of amber Flemish glass, blend in
with the general scheme and, provide a soft light during the day. The building
was designed by Mr. W. Frank Chatfield, of Semaphore, while the contactor was
Mr. G. G. Stacey, of Moorook.124


Murray Pioneer, 9 Nov 1939.



During World War II soldiers came from as far as the Loveday internee camp to
dances at the hall, it's floor surface being highly regarded.
A cairn to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of General Sir John
Monash was erected in front of the hall and unveiled by district pioneer Mr. A. B.
Mortimer at a ceremony at Monash on 1 July 1965.
Cairn to honour Sir John Monash, 1965
The Monash area was named after Sir John Monash who distinguished himself
in many fields. The Monash Sub-branch of the R.S.L. instigated moves to erect
the cairn in front of the Monash Memorial Hall. The cairn, which will be lighted
and bear a plaque, will be unveiled on what will be the 100th anniversary of the
birth of Sir John Monash, on Sunday.125
In 2000 the roof was replaced with new iron. In 2007 the original floor was

The Monash Institute was formed on 23 February 1922 and meetings were held
in the recreation hall. The Institute provided a subscription library service for the
The committee of the Lone Gum Institute are to be congratulated on their
entering into their new home on Saturday, May 2 [1925]. Since its formation
steady progress has been made; from time to time new books have been added
and the shelves extended till the room occupied became altogether too small.
Arrangements were made to hire the hall which previously was used as the
school and on Saturday evening, May 2, the old school became the new home of
the Lone Gum and Monash Institute. It is a step forward.126
On completion of the second hall in 1927 the first hall became known as the
institute building. From 1934-1938 the institute building was rented by the
school for year 4 and 5 classroom accommodation.
The ceremony of laying the foundation stone of the new memorial hall at
Monash was performed yesterday afternoon by Mr. Macgillivray, M.P., in
place of the Premier (Mr. Playford). Among the visitors were 64 members of the
Prospect sub-branch of the R.S.L. The president of the Monash new hall
committee (Mr. R. W Nixon) referred to a message from the Premier saying that
his duty was with his Government. He left Berri at 11 a.m. for Adelaide. The
foundation stone, which was presented by the Prospect sub-branch, had been cut
from a block of marble from the old Parliament House. In the absence of the
Acting Director of Education (Dr. C. E. Fenner), Inspector Gerlach gave an
address. Alderman Menzies and Mr. H. Moore spoke on behalf of the visitors.
After the ceremony the visitors were entertained at afternoon tea by the
Women's Guild. A social evening and dance was held in the R.S.L. hall at night.


Murray Pioneer, 24 Jun 1965.

Murray Pioneer, 10 May 1925.


The visitors were accommodated at the homes of settlers overnight, and returned
to the city shortly before midday today.127


Institute membership128
Subscribers Books
500 added
4,100 added

Change in library hours at Monash, 1952

Owing to increased attendance in Library hours on Thursday evenings and lack
of support on Saturday night, the Lone Gum and Monash Institute Library will
open only on Thursdays 7:30pm to 9pm after July 26.129
Annual meeting was held on Feb 19th. President Geo. Hunt made special
reference to the excellent work of secretary [Reg] Telfer, and Treasurer L. A.
Bigg, who have both completed 21 years of service to the community a very
fine record. These officers were re-elected. The Institute and District lost an
untiring worker in the late Mr. Roy McCreanor.130
Roy McCreanor memorial, 1953
The Juvenile Library at Monash Institute, which is to be a memorial to the late
Roy McCreanor, will be opened on Wed, 8th April.131
Access to the juvenile library was provided free to the Monash children. In three
months over 34 in donations was raised for the purchase of childrens books.
Lone Gum and Monash Institute, 1960
The 38th annual meeting of the Lone Gum and Monash Institute was held
recently. There was a good attendance, almost double last years.
More new books were available to members now than at any other time before,
and a new bookcase is to be made to contain them. Officers for 1960 are:
President Mr. Bertram Sonntag; Vice presidents, Mr. George. Hunt and Mr.
Phillip B. Thomas; Secretary, position unfilled (Mr. Telfer temporary for
present); Treasurer, Mr. Lloyd A. Bigg; committee, Mesdames Lawrence R.

Adelaide Advertiser, 4 Sep 1939.

Murray Pioneer, (various).
129 Berri Community News, 2 Jul 1952.
130 Berri Community News, 4 Mar 1953.
131 Berri Community News, 1 Apr 1953.



Ralph, R. Whyatt, R. Nelsson, G. Milne, Miss E. M. Henwood, Messrs S. Dyer,

L. W. Ellis, R. Neilsen, R. Telfer, G. Telfer; Librarian, Mrs. R. Whyatt; Auditor,
Mr. W. Jackson.
A motion was moved and carried with acclamation, That members of this
Institute and rest of the settlement are indebted to Mr. R. Telfer (Secretary) and
Mr. L. A. Bigg (President) (both for 27 yeasr) and Mr. G. Hunt (for 10 years)
as President, for their service during that time.132
New library building, 1965
At a recent meeting of the Lone Gum and Monash Institute arrangements were
made for the opening of the new library building which is nearing completion.
The Institute Committee has after many years of consistent work raised enough
money for the new building which will replace a wood and iron structure that
has served the district for over forty years.133

Des Muller and his mother established a butcher shop on Madison Avenue
around 1965. Around 1980 Des built a new butcher shop on Randell Street,
alongside the fire station. Des retired in 2005 after 40 years service and the
business passed to his nephew, Darryl Muller.

A blacksmith shop operated on town block 83 operated from 1923 to 1925.
Gradually the township grows and this week one of the blockers, Mr. Duncan
Fisher, has opened up a shop adjoining Hunts store as a saddler and harness
Mr. G. H. Paddick and family from Renmark have now taken up residence in
Monash. Mr. Paddick some little while ago took over the blacksmithing business
here. Mr. Paddick is building up the business on a lager scale and has already
got some of his implements into use on the settlement.135
Mr. Paddick returned to Renmark in August 1925 and put the shop up for sale in

Monash Club
A committee of three was appointed to go into all aspects of the possibility of
the establishment of a club hotel for the Monash district. This committee is to
collate possible finance, upkeep, situation and the method of operating, to be put
before a public meeting within three months.136


Murray Pioneer, 17 Mar, 1960.

Murray Pioneer, 2 Sep 1965.
134 Murray Pioneer, Jul 1923
135 Murray Pioneer, 9 Sep 1923
136 Berri Community News, 21 Nov 1957.


Monash Club to buy premises
At as special meeting of the Monash Club the president (Mr. B. W. Nicholas)
reported that the Club had become an incorporated body. The meeting agreed to
a suggestion of the committee of management that the purchase of the building
at present occupied by the Club be proceeded with, and that an all-out drive be
made for finance from members and others, to enable this and other matters to
be carried out. It was also decided that a series of working bees be held to
improve the general appearance of the grounds, and that trees and ornamental
shrubs be planted.137
Monash Club Opening, 1958
On Saturday morning the chairman of the Berri District Council (Cr. R. V.
Dennis) performed the official opening of the new Club at Monash, in the
presence of a good attendance.138
Monash Club destroyed by fire.
Arson squad called to inquire, 1962?
In the early hours of this morning the premises of the Monash Club were almost
completely destroyed by fire. The blaze was discovered about 4.30 a.m. by Mr.
Clarence Fiebig who gave the alarm. Fire Brigades from both Berri and Monash
were called, but the premises were well ablaze when they arrived and little could
be done. The conflagration also indicated that the water supply for the Monash
township area is inadequate to cope with such an eventuality. Mr. S. Dyer,
president of the club estimated the damage at 4,000. The Monash Club was
established in 1958, and was officially opened on Dec. 13, 1958. At the annual
meeting held recently a year of steady progress was reported.139


Dennis Goodrich
Dennis Goodrich
Stan Dyer
Stan Dyer
Tom McGuire
John Fundack

Berri Community News, date unknown.

Berri Community News, Dec 1958.
139 Berri Community News?, 1962?



G Jury

J R Henwood



Methodist Church
The Monash Methodist Church was opened by Mrs. Hallam on 7 Sep 1924.
Additions, 1936
Additions are being made to the Monash Methodist church, including a
classroom to provide for the better working of the Sunday school, and a porchway in the front of the church.140
Monash Methodist Church Anniversary, 1936
The [12th]anniversary services of the Monash Methodist church were held on
Sunday in the afternoon and evening and conducted by the Rev. A. E. Vogt. The
Berri choir, under the leadership of Mr. W. N. Wilkinson, assisted at the
afternoon service. The occasion also marked the opening of the new porch and
additions to the church. Mr. Vogt, after speaking of the need for the larger
building, introduced Mrs. F. H. Dyer, president of the Methodist Ladies Guild,
who performed the opening ceremony.
During the afternoon the new kindergarten room was handed over to the charge
of Mr. P. B. Thomas, as superintendent of the Sunday school, who in turn
invited Miss Dora Hallam, head of the kindergarten department, to unlock and
declare open the new infant room.141
Monash Methodist Guild, 1952
At a meeting on June 18 tributes were paid to Mesdames A. Hallam and G. Hunt
who for over twelve years have been energetic president and secretary-treasurer
Methodist ladies guild, 1954
At a meeting held on Thursday, 22nd April, the president, Mrs. Frick, welcomed
the Reverend and Mrs. Gunthrope to the first meeting of the year. This was also
the annual meeting and re-election of officers took place. All those holding
office were re-elected with the exception of Mrs. Lobban, who has left to join
the Berri Guild. Mrs. G. Hunt was elected treasurer in her place.143
The Church was demolished around 1980.


Murray Pioneer, 25 Aug 1936.

Murray Pioneer, 6 Oct 1936.
142 Berri Community News, 2 Jul 1952.
143 Berri Community News, 6 May 1954.



St. Oswalds Anglican Church

The first wedding at Monash in the first St. Oswalds Church was between
Lawrence Brand and Margaret Cahill on 23 June 1926.144
Work is proceeding apace with the erection of the new Anglican Church at
Monash. It is being built of Spring Cart Gully stone and should present a
pleasing appearance.145
The new building is being erected as a result of the efforts of the local
congregation to replace the present structure which has been ravaged by white
ants. When completed, the new church will seat 90 people and is to be of Spring
Cart Gully stone. There will be a vestry porch on the northern side and an altar
apse at the eastern end.146
Glorious weather accompanied the ceremony of the laying of the foundation
stone of the new Anglican Church of St. Oswalds at Monash on Sunday
afternoon. There was a large attendance of adherents and well-wishers for the
occasion, the service being conducted by Rev. C. C. Chittleborough of
Balaklava, who was assisted by Rev. W. A. Moore and Rev. E. A. Codd. It was
fitting that the foundation stone should be laid by Mr. Chittleborough, for he had
done a great deal in creating a solid foundation to the church as a body during
his ministry in this district years ago.
The building which is now approaching the scaffolding stage, measures 34ft. by
20ft. with a 7ft. apse at the eastern end. Seating accommodation will provide for
approximately 90 persons. 147
The first wedding in the new church was between Charles Dalby and Delia
Higgs on 4 December 1937.148
St Oswalds ladies guild, 1954
Members of the Church gathered at the home of Mr. And Mrs. J. T. Lehmann on
Monday evening, June 14th, to say farewell to Mr. And Mrs. J. R. Paxton. After
a bright programme of games and competitions arranged by Mrs. K. Parker, a
delicious supper was served. Mr. Potts (peoples warden) and Mrs. Lock (Guild
president) spoke of the service given to the Church, especially by Mrs. Paxton,
who was secretary of the guild for several years.149
Glass windows dedicated as feast of saint celebrated, 2005
The Anglican Church of Saint Oswald in Monash enjoyed a special celebration
recently. Two new stained glass windows were dedicated at the church on the
occasion of the Feast of Saint Oswald. Rural Dean of the Riverland Father Alan

SAGHS marriages CD.

Murray Pioneer, 14 Oct 1935.
146 Murray Pioneer, 1935.
147 Murray Pioneer, 18 Nov 1935.
148 SAGHS marriages CD.
149 Berri Community News, 1 Jul 1954.



Jones said the occasion was an important one for the church. "Saint Oswald's is
the only church building in Monash and is believed to be the oldest church
building in the Berri-Barmera district still used for worship," he said.
"Considerable work has been put into renovating the building for the
(dedication) day, necessary maintenance has been done and the exterior
woodwork returned to its original appearance. "There is restorative work yet to
be carried out inside the building, which remains much as it was when the
church was first built but with the addition of more modern lighting. "The
majority of the work to date has been undertaken using the skills of parishioners
and some generous donations from both past and present parishioners." The
Bishop of the Murray the Right Reverend Ross Davies lead the dedication.
Parishioners of Saint Oswald Cheryl and Geoffrey Davis presented the windows
to the church. Mrs Davis designed and crafted the windows. The dedication also
marked the 70th anniversary of the laying of the church's foundation stone. 150


Murray Pioneer, 12 Aug 2005.



Mrs. Hallam unlocking the door at the opening of the Monash Methodist
Church, 7 Sep 1924.

St Oswalds Anglican Church, Monash, looking south.





Fire Brigade
In summer the bushfire season marks a time of high risk with high temperatures
and strong winds. During the early years the risk from fires was particularly
severe as there were no pumps or fire fighting equipment. A 1927 blaze at Lone
Gum was caused by a whirly.
Whilst Mr. Fred Affleck, who is working Mr. Berimans block, was busy
clearing things up on the drying green prior to the commencement of harvesting
operations on Thursday last a whirlwind happened and was responsible for
considerable damage. Mr Affleck had been going through the Hessians and was
burning some old mats when the whirlwind took the fire in its track through the
scrub, with the result that the grass surrounding the green caught alight and the
fire soon spread over a fair portion of the dry block. Mr. Affleck could do little
to check the flames which lapped up anything which was at all burnable.
A considerable amount of damage was done. Mr. Beriman losing a large stack of
firewood containing approximately 50 tons, his stable, and an iron shed
adjoining. It was remarkable that he did not also lose a heap of sweat-boxes and
trays which were in the way of the flames, the wind being so strong that it blew
the flames underneath the trays.
It is unfortunate that such a thing should have happened at this busy time of the
year, and, although no blame attaches to Mr. Affleck, it shows how very careful
one must be in handling fires where grass is about.151


Murray Pioneer, 14 Feb 1927.




Good work at a Monash fire
The great advantage of a telephone exchange as an aid in fighting fires was
again realized yesterday morning, when settlers were called to a fire on Mr.
Golledges property at Monash. Saturday morning was a bad day for a fire and
when Mr. Golledges neighbours noticed dense smoke coming from the
direction of his stable it was realized at once that there was a tough proposition
ahead. An old stump, which had been burnt when the land on his dry block had
been cleared up a couple of weeks ago, had apparently still smouldered and, the
strong wind that morning must have blown a spark towards the stable and set
fire to the manure in the yard.
The fire was almost up to the stable when the first two men arrived on the scene.
To save the stable seemed hopeless and it appeared that only what could be got
out before the flames scoffed the lot, would be saved. A trolley which was
standing nearby was moved to safety and then, seeing that the manure was
burning steadily on to the stable, it was thought that by beating back the building
and its contents might possibly be saved. Meantime word was telephoned to the
local exchange and all available settlers were rung up and were soon hastening
to the scene.
Mr. Harvey and Mr. Maddern, who were helped by one of the Jugo-Slavs
nearby, apparently adopted the right course, for although they did not attempt to
put out the blaze their efforts to save the shed were successful when, just as the
smoke had almost forced them away, the batch of helpers arrived and, attacking
the blaze from different directions got the situation in hand; although it was
several hours before the fire was finally put out. The main trouble was the
burning manure which it was practically impossible to put out except with water,
and the trouble was made double bad on Saturday with the heavy wind blowing
the sparks in all directions and starting fresh fires, which had to be closely
watched for and put out immediately.
Mr. Golledge on this morning had gone onto the packing shed in Berri but on
arrival there was told to return home immediately. It is said that he gave his car a
very good speed trial on the way out. It was only a matter of minutes and Mr.
Golledges loss would have been severe as the contents of the stable would have
gone well into three figures; as it happens his only loss has been a few posts.152


Murray Pioneer, 6 Jan 1928.


Car and shed burnt, Monash, 1928
Mrs A. E. Sando of Lone Gum received a severe shock when, through her back
door, she saw their motor shed one mass of flames. Mr. Sando was working his
block and so Mrs. Sando sent her little boy over to Messrs. Potts and Russell
who live nearby to get them to help but on arrival it was found impossible to
save anything as the shed together with its contents, chief of which was the
motor car, was ablaze from end to end. Everything was completely destroyed
only one mass of twisted iron and steel being left. Mr. Sandos loss has been
severe as only the car was insured, the shed, its contents of tools, and ton
chaff which was nearby, not being covered at all.153
The destruction by fire of about a dozen sweat boxes and the burning of the
fascia boards of his home was sustained by Mr J. Carlyon of Lone Gum on
Monday when the front brush verandah to his home caught fire. Mr. R. Russell,
who lives about a quarter of a mile away, happened to see the flames and he and
Mr. Potts hurried to the scene of the outbreak. A number of willing workers
soon assembled and got the fire under control; but only just in time as the fascia
boards of the house were alight. The building is of concrete and having no
windows in the front Mrs. Carlyon, who was inside the house did not know
anything of what was going on until the firefighters came rushing along. Mr.
Carlyon was working at the bottom of the block. It is thought that a spark must
have blown from the kitchen and set alight to the brush. There is no doubt that it
was a fortunate save as in a few minutes the whole house would have been
Fire danger in brush sheds, 1934
Fire destroyed a brush shed and most of its contents at the home of Mr. E.
Golledge early one morning. Hearing a roaring noise Mr. Golledge looked from
his door to find the shed a mass of flame. Assistance was sought nearby and the
fire was fortunately prevented from spreading beyond the shed. Until the
industry brightens it seems that this type of shed will remain for quite a while,
but nethertheless it is a constant source of danger.
The cause of the fire, according to Mr. Golledge, was most likely that a lad who
was staying with him was shooting sparrows with an air gun. A pellet possibly
struck a piece of iron causing a spark which must have ignited the dry material
of the shed. There were no matches about and the fire occurred about 6 a.m.
This is the only cause the owner of the property can think of, and if correct it
just points out how careful people must be in the vicinity of this type of
structure, especially during such hot weather.155


Murray Pioneer 30 Jan 1928.

Murray Pioneer, 1929.
155 Murray Pioneer, 1 Feb 1934.




Monash Residents Severe Loss, 1936
The six-roomed house of Mr. C. R. McIvor of Monash, was totally destroyed by
fire about midnight on Monday. The building which was of mixed construction,
was completely gutted and only a tangled mass now remains. Mr McIvor was
out spending the evening with friends, but left the members of the local dance
band at rehearsal in his home. When they left the building it was apparently
secure. About an hour later a noise attracted the attention of Mr. L. Attree, who
lives in the vicinity. He gave the warning and, with the assistance of Mr. W. J.
Rowan, did all he could to cope with the situation. The flames quickly spread
over the whole building and practically nothing could be done except to check
their spread to the adjoining buildings-the R.S.A. hall and the Lone Gum and
Monash Institute. A piano and two or three articles of furniture which were
dragged from the burning building were the only things saved, even these being
damaged by heat and smoke.
Considerable sympathy is felt for Mr. McIvor in his serious loss, especially as it
comes on the eve of the return of Mrs. McIvor who, with her two children, has
been on a visit to Ireland to see her mother. The building and contents were
insured. The Berri Police have investigated and submitted a report to the coroner
Mr. W. J. Rowan.156
The fire which destroyed the home of Mr C. R. McIvor has brought forward the
question of checking similar outbreaks should they occur. It was felt that had
some appliance been available a considerable portion of the house could have
been saved on this occasion. Had there been a strong wind on Monday night,
there would have been little chance of saving the R.S.A. hall or the Institute,
whichever way the wind blew. It is understood that inquiries are being made into
the question of some method of protection for the settlement.157
Quantity of Fruit Destroyed at Monash, 1937
Very few people would give a thought to the possibility of a fire on a fruit
drying rack, but that there is a danger is evidenced by the fire which occurred on
the property of Mr E. Webb of Monash, on Sunday and destroyed almost half a
rack of dried fruit. It appears that a small fire was lit some distance away but as
conditions were comparatively calm there was no thought of danger. A
whirlwind, however, stirred up some ashes and carried these, setting fire to some
Hessians and extending from these speedily to the rack-curtains and so setting
fire to the whole mass. Neighbours quickly came to the assistance and prevented
the spread to more than seven bays of fruit, but nothing could be done to save
the fruit on the portion which was ablaze. Several full bundles of Hessian were
also destroyed.
The loss is all more severe for Mr. Webb as he was so badly hit by spring frosts
and, having such a light crop had gone to considerable trouble to produce a good
sample of fruit. The fruit damaged had been shaken down and was ready for

Murray Pioneer, 15 Jun 1936.

Murray Pioneer, 18 Jun 1936.


final processing on the drying ground, and was of a splendid quality.
Considerable sympathy is extended to Mr. Webb in his severe loss.158
Drainage Pumping Station Burnt Out
The North Monash pumping station on the Berri drainage scheme, housing three
electrically driven Pomona pumps, caught on fire on Sunday evening. The
fire was noticed shortly after 7 p.m., when the alarm was given. When the fire
brigade arrived from Berri, the building was a mass of flames, and according to
the foreman of the Brigade (Mr. R. C. Loader) the equipment and motors were
white hot. An endeavour was made to obtain water from the huge tank but the
water was 20ft. down and too low for suction of the brigade pumps, which then
had to use 800 feet of hose, connecting up with the town supply. It is estimated
that the total damage would be in excess of 1,000. It is understood that an
emergency plant will be installed to cope with the ever increasing water which is
flowing into the tank whilst the irrigation is in progress. The cause of the fire is
attributed to a short in the electrical equipment.159
Volunteer Fire Brigade for Monash, 1957
At a meeting of the Monash Progress Association, held early in February, it was
decided to form a volunteer fire brigade for the area. The District Council is to
be asked to provide the necessary equipment, which will be housed at the
Monash Store by Mr. J. Green. Seventeen men have already offered themselves
as emergency fireman and Mr. Green has been appointed local fire chief.160
Volunteer Fire Brigades, 1957
Some years ago the Council provided a certain amount of equipment for
Glossop. The Glossop progress Association supplemented this equipment by
providing a shed to house the equipment. In spite of all this, the equipment has
never been used. When there is a fire at or near Glossop, no-one troubles to try
and make use of the equipment housed locally. They use the telephone, and in a
few moments a fully equipped fire truck, with fully trained men, is on the scene.
The Council has therefore suggested that the Monash Progress Association talk
the matter over with representatives of the Glossop Association.161
Fire Service formed, 1958
At a meeting last week convened by the Monash Progress Association an
Emergency Fire Service was formed at Monash. It was resolved that the
necessary steps be taken to get official recognition from the District Council of
Berri and the State E.F.S. and the first piece of equipment be bought to be a
siren erected in a central position in the town area. With the interest shown quite
good, the president is nevertheless hopeful that still more young persons will


Murray Pioneer, 9 Mar 1937.

Murray Pioneer, 22 Jan 1948.
160 Berri Community News, 1957.
161 Berri Community News, 1957.



attend all of the lectures and demonstrations that are to be arranged in the near
Ready for Action, 1959
The Monash Emergency Fire Service wish to notify the people of Monash and
District that they are now ready for action. Owing to lack of finances, we still
have very little equipment (but we hope to be able to improve in the near future)
but we are now an organised body. Our siren is erected and in the event of fire,
we would be able to assist Berri brigade or Barmera E.F.S. In fact we are
available to be called out any time for any emergency. To set our siren in
motion, ring Monash 322.
We are making an appeal to the district for financial assistance, so if you could
help us, we would be very pleased to accept any donations. Our efforts are
entirely voluntary, and we need financial assistance urgently. Also, if anyone
has a knapsack spray that he no longer requires, we would be very pleased to
receive same. Also note: our siren will be tested every Monday night at 7
oclock. 163
Annual General Meeting, 1960
The annual general meeting of the Monash Emergency Fire Service was held in
the fire station on July 20th. All officers were re-elected: president Mr. R.
Fiebig; vice president and fire chief, Mr. B Hallam; deputy fire chief, Mr. J.
Grigic; secretary and treasurer, Mr. I. Ellis.
While trying to track down and find a solution to overcome the unlimited
number of false alarms on our siren, the president, Mr. Ron Fiebig, contacted the
P.M.G. department, who have given us a different number, which took effect on
August 1. The new number to dial is Monash 398.164
Raoul Henri Otto de Grancy was awarded a Centenary Medal in 2001 for long
voluntary service with the Country Fire Service.
Fireman Raoul honoured, 2008
Country Fire Service (CFS) volunteer Raoul Otto de Grancy was honoured on
Australia Day for his service to the organisation. Mr Otto de Grancy said he was
"very proud" to receive the Australian Fire Service Medal after more than 30
years as a CFS volunteer. "It really is an honour," he said. "It is good to know
that people think I have done a good job." The medal recognises distinguished
service by members of the Australian fire service. Mr Otto de Grancy joined the
CFS in Tea Tree Gully, Adelaide, in 1975 and continued to volunteer at Monash
when he moved to the region in 1984. "I wanted to become part of the
community and knew the CFS was a great way to get involved," he said. "The
camaraderie is great - it is like one big family from the chief officer down to the
newest recruit. Everyone's there to help. "I'd recommend (the CFS) to anyone."


Berri Community News, 11 Jul 1958.

Berri Community News, 2 Jul 1959.
164 Berri Community News, 4 Aug 1960.


You don't have to be included in the heavy stuff like fires and accidents. There is
plenty to do in administration, communications and finance. "They are always
looking for new members." During his time with the CFS, Mr Otto de Grancy
has served in a number of positions including six years as the inaugural Chaffey
group officer. He retired from this position in May last year but still continues to
volunteer with the Monash CFS.165


Murray Pioneer, 1 Feb 2008.


John Heward, 1986?

Monash unit 41, 1987




Monash unit 14, photo from Murray Pioneer, 2005.

Monash unit 34, photo from CFS website, 2005.


Monash unit 34, photo from CFS website, 2005.

Monash unit 34, photo from CFS website, 2006.




Monash unit 14, photo from CFS website, 2006.

Monash CFS station, photo from CFS website, 2006.

Raoul Henri Otto de Grancy, 2006.

Murray Pioneer.



The poor condition of early roads tested the patience of motorists.
All turns and angles, 1919
The run through the Toorak Valley to Lone Gum also reveals trees and vines
making luxuriant growth and looking extremely well. A number of good houses
are in course of erection along this road, which is one of the most awkward
tracks to negotiate with a car any fool driver wanting to commit suicide could
wish to tackle. I travelled it once in a car driven by a doctor who was in a hurry,
and I thought the man who was responsible for its lay-out ought to survey
another and die. It is all turns and angles.166
The lake, 1924
Even after 3 weeks have gone the Lake in the middle of the settlement still
remains and traffic has still to be diverted from the usual block. Three drays up
to date have got off the track and have fared rather badly in the mud, one having
to be abandoned for a couple of days.167
Halls corner, 1926
This afternoon the party in two cars went to Lone Gum and Monash and their
tour of the Monash roads took them to the North Eastern corner of the settlement
at what is generally termed Halls Corner (one wonders wether the A may
be a misprint after the afternoons experience). The two carloads were seen to
turn the corner and there was a very long spell before their return. The fact was
they were bogged. The first car manoeuvred round, but the second one,
following in its track, went down. Then the first one followed suit and both were
in the mud down to the running boards.168
Accident on Berri-Monash Road, 1947
On Saturday evening a buckboard driven by Edwin Percy Elze, proceeding from
Berri to Monash failed to negotiate the turn at Deexs corner [Berri road and
Wright road intersection], crashed through the fence and jumped the main
channel. This is a particularly dangerous corner. Some few months ago a similar
accident occurred at the identical spot. It would be a great benefit if the corner
which is unirrigated highland were cleared off for some ten feet, and a danger
sign erected warning motorist of the curve.169


Murray Pioneer, 28 Nov 1919.

Murray Pioneer, 6 Jan 1924.
168 Murray Pioneer, 5 Jan 1926.
169 Murray Pioneer, 26 Mar 1947.


Drainage sumps, 1952
Between MOSSS CORNER and OBSTS CORNER certain [drainage]
sumps are already dangerous, and will be more dangerous when (as proposed)
this portion of road is bituminised, thus encouraging motorists to travel faster.
The Council asks that your Department provide sighting posts, painted with the
usual black and white, and maintain these, to partially eliminate the danger.170

For many years the quickest road route from Monash to Adelaide was via
Morgan. A more direct route would require two crossings of the river. From
1922 this direct route became possible with the introduction of a ferry crossing
at Kingston-on-Murray, coupled with the Blanchetown ferry established in 1869.
Delays of many hours were not uncommon at the ferry crossings and the
Morgan route was longer but quicker. The direct route finally became practical
when the Blanchetown bridge was opened in April 1964 and the Kingston-onMurray bridge in 1966.
Bitumen roads, 1964
Down at Monash the other day A.H. (Jack) Heward told me that he takes
exception to people referring to the road from Springcart Gully to North Lake
being called The Monash By-pass Road. Its not a by-pass, he said, its the
Morgan-Renmark main road, and always has been. Mr. Heward said it was
pleasing to see that a start was being made at last towards bitumenizing this
Road bitumenisation timeline
1957 Monash-Berri
1964 Monash-Barmera
1970s Monash-Glossop

Motor car registration, 1931
The instance of the regulations regarding re-registering motor cars and paying
the full 12 months tax in advance will mean the loss of quite a fair sum of
revenue to the Department from this district alone. Few growers are in a position
to pay the full 12 months this year. This is just another case where the poor old
primary producer in the country is penalised. Three are no trams or trains to
convey settlers about the district and the horses used on the blocks are busy with
their harvest work in addition to the usual cultural operations so that they cannot
be expected to take place of a car. Dozens of cars are having their last run to-day
as a result of the decision of the Government.172


Council letter to Department of Lands, 20 May 1952.

Murray Pioneer, Jan 1964.
172 Murray Pioneer, 31 Mar 1931.



"There were not many cars in the district, which meant that it was easy to
recognise by sound a car even if you could not see it. We were seldom wrong."

W. V. Wally Pendle (MM) and J. A. Morphett ran a regular bus service from
Morgan and stopping at Lone Gum as early as 1919.174 Wally continued the bus
run for 51 years. By early 1920 Tom Warrick & Co ran a daily bus service
between Renmark, Lone Gum, Berri, Cobdogla and Morgan.175 Early settlers
travelled by bus to Morgan to connect with the train to Adelaide. When
passenger trains to Morgan ceased in 1965 the Traffic Control Board approved
a permit for a direct bus service from Adelaide to Berri, Barmera and

Paddle steamers
Although Monash is one of the few Riverland towns not actually on the river in
1921 the newly formed Monash Model Parliament elected a minister for River
navigation. In the 1920s large freight was still shipped by steamer to the
railway at Morgan but the river trade was in decline.
In 1919 when Arnold Sando and his wife moved from the soldier settler training
camp at Pompoota to Monash they shipped their household effects via paddle
steamer to Berri. The distance by river is 358 km compared to 244 km by road.
Reg Telfer shipped his hay mower to Adelaide for repairs, by road to Berri,
paddle steamer to Mannum then train to Adelaide. The round trip took three

A railway from Adelaide to Morgan was built in 1878. There was much
discussion about the possibility of extending this line and Monash residents
were hopeful for it to pass through their town. However it was the opening of a
road and railway bridge at Paringa in January 1927 that provided a less direct
rail link from Renmark via Alawoona to Adelaide. In August 1928 the line was
extended to Berri, Glossop and Barmera, bypassing Monash. The line was
discontinued in 1990.

"We always had an air service, Renmark-Adelaide. I remember the silver De
Havilland Rapide biplane flying regularly low over Monash primary school, and
later, the DC-3s & De Havilland 4 engine Heron services AdelaideMelbourne."177


Ian Sando memoirs, 2005.

Murray Pioneer, May 1919.
175 Murray Pioneer, 16 Jan 1920.
176 Murray Pioneer, 18 Mar 1965.
177 Grant Telfer memoirs, unpublished.



Mrs. Marion Nicholas, 25, of Monash was killed in an Dragon Rapide aeroplane
crash along with her mother, Mrs. Harriet Hodson of Berri. They had been
travelling to Adelaide to meet Mrs. Nicholass husband, Lieutenant Peter
Nicholas, who was on leave from the A.I.F.
river residents perish in air crash, 1944.
The pilot and six passengers were killed instantly when the plane on the
Renmark-Adelaide service crashed into Mt. Kitchener, near Tanunda, shortly
after 3 p.m., last Thursday. Five of the passengers were residents of the River
districts. 178


Murray Pioneer, 22 Jan 1944.



Edward and Jane Trotman sitting in remains of Reg Telfer's Ford Territory. Reg
Telfer in truck, c1940.

Ness Telfer & Stan Trotman in Amilcar, c1926.

Telfer family with 6 cylinder "Oakland" tourer, c1942. Reg Telfer in car, Doris,
Grant (10), Kaye (6), Claire (7).


Fire brigade

World War II
Throughout the Monash district there were around 84 enlistments, including five
women. 179
Our [WWI] returned men have not only produced large tonnages of dried fruits,
citrus fruits and wines, but during the past 20 years they have also produced a
crop of stalwart sons and daughters, children who (until the accursed greed of
Hitler forced this war upon us) worked with their parents to bring these
irrigation settlements into full production; and as the war affected fathers
became weary, their sons took over the plough and carried on, while the
daughters assisted in gathering the harvest.
But, not so now. The call to the colours in the fight for freedom has been
answered one hundred per cent by these gallant sons and daughters of fighting
fathers, with the result that these old soldiers, together with the civilian fruitgrowers, have had to take up the plough again, to preserve the homes and
livelihoods that these brave children helped to create.180
South Australia had many settlers of German descent, many of them in fruit
growing regions of Barossa and the Riverland. Although many had fought for
Australia in WWI and WWII some were persecuted and others incarcerated in
internment camps.
This 2nd War came and lots of men went, the sons of 1st War settlers and some
never came back and their names live on. There were mistakes made at times.
The authorities denounced a settler near me as being a Nazi and warned him. He
not being one but a real worker and having been wounded severely in the 1st
War was so cut up over it that he left the district at once, refusing a send off
that was offered him. He really felt that and was downhearted.181
Monash. At the final night of the series in which 10 members sat for their
V.S.D. examinations, the members of the Monash Unit provided refreshments
and took the opportunity of expressing their thanks to Dr. Hayes and Miss
Henwood, who had acted as lecturer and Instructor respectively since the
formation of the Monash Unit A presentation was made to both in appreciation
of their services and general as sisiance. Mrs. Quinton. as officer-in-charge.
made the presentation. and was supported by Mrs. Frick,. second officer. Miss
Bella Rowan is quartermaster of the unit.182

At the Monash Memorial Hall last Saturday night a party was held in aid of
Miss Air Force. Opportunity was also taken of entertaining Pte. Geoff
Maddern. AXF who was home on leave. The dance music was supplied by
members of the Yugoslav Mandolin Band, who in their picturesque costumes

Murray Pioneer, 8 Aug 1946.

Speech by Arthur Hunt, 6 Jan 1943.
181 Reg Telfer memoirs, unpublished.
182 The Mail (Adelaide), 8 Mar 1941.

Fire Brigade


added color to the stage setting. The Monash school children gave three items.
Mrs. F. H. Nixon made a presentation including a 10/ note, a handkerchief, and a
pair of socks, to Pte. Maddern. Mr. Nixon introduced Miss Audine White law,
who as Miss Air Force was the district representative in the services'
competition in connection with the Bed Cross drive for the Berri area.183

Labour shortages
Their shortage of labour available for the harvest became acute in 1943. Two
generations were away serving in the armed forces.
Fruit Growers Great Gesture
Berri district fruit-growers will work 1,000 acres of fruit land while the owners
are absent through camp call-up.
While on parade last Saturday about 40 returned soldiers, members of the
garrison reserve, received word to be in camp within 48 hours. Most of the men
being fruitgrowers, the problem of caring for their properties seemed likely to be
Within six hours Mr. J. McKay had covened a public meeting, and 60 growers
had decided to maintain the essential work on the properties. Of the 1,000 acres
affected, 700 are in the Monash and Lone Gum districts, the remainder being in
Glossop, Winkie, and Berri.
The men called up are all returned soldiers, and readily accepted mobilisation.
They appreciate, too, the wonderful spirit of co-operation shown by the other
growers, short of labour themselves, in accepting responsibility of managing
their properties.
This is going to entail an even earlier start for them in the morning, and a later
finish in the evening.184
Arthur Hunt (manager of the Berri Labour Exchange) usually has a good story to
tell, if one can catch him with a minute to spare in these days of his
multitudinous duties, allotting labour and taking of a 30-acre crop [at Monash].
Here is his latest: The 90 Militiamen arriving to assist with the fruit harvest were
met at the railway station by their intended employers, a hurried introduction
took place, and in 30 minutes after their arrival all were bustled away to a hot
bath and roast tea. This was soon disposed of. Then off to Berri to meet their
cobbers; pictures, dances, and other amusements were enjoyed to the full, until
midnight, when suddenly somebody said, I want to go home, but where was
home? Where do you live Bill? Ask me, said Bill, out where General
Monash was born I think, anyhow its Monash. What is the name of the bloke
you work for? Blowed if I know, but when we were having tea his wife called
him Daddy; thats all I know.
Jack from Winkie set off with Bill from Monash to try and find home, and
eventually they met two others who wanted to go to Glossop heading for Toora

The Mail (Adelaide), 7 December 1940.

The Mail (Adelaide), 20 December 1941.


Fire brigade
Vale. There they found the watchman on duty, but as neither of the knew the
name of his employer, the kindly watchman found them a bunk for the balance
of the night.
Next morning the phones were humming That you Mr. Hunt, my man has
cleared out, never came home all night, what am I to do? Phone buzzes again.
Mr. Hunt, there are four or five Militia boys over here and they do not know
who they are working for can you fix them up? So by mid-day Sunday,
everything was back in order, the last were found and the tales were told.
Monday morning all were down to it, and the constant click, click, click, of the
grape cutters, told the world that the 1943 harvest was in full swing.185

Some blockers serving in Australia were able to take leave for the harvest.
Laurie Maddern was a Soldier Settler who served in World War I and again in
RAAF HQ in World War II. He was nearly 46 years old when he enlisted and 49
when he was discharged.
L.A.C. [Leading Air Craftsman] L. H. [Laurie] Maddern (R.A.A.F.) is home for
about six weeks leave, to supervise the harvesting of his vine crop.186

Air observers
In 1943 residents of the Berri and surrounding districts formed the Berri Air
Observation Post (V.A.O.P.) for the purpose of reporting night time bombing
raids. Volunteers took up four hour watches between 7:00pm and 7:00am at the
Berri pumping station as this was considered the most strategic target. Most of
the volunteers were ex-serviceman from World War I.


Murray Pioneer, Feb 1943.

Murray Pioneer, 25 Feb 1943.



In January 1920 Lone Gum Primary School opened with just 27 students. In
1928 the school was renamed Monash Primary School.

Clement Wilfred Till

Mr. Clem Till, the first teacher, arrived during the second week of January 1920,
and tacked a notice on the door stating that school would open on Tuesday,
January 19. Clement Wilfred Till served as a Private with the 43rd Battalion
during WWI. He stayed as head teacher for three months before taking up a
fruit block at Barmera.
Mr. C. Till, who once had charge of the public school at Lone Gum, has left the
Department. There were many expressions of regret at Mr. Tills departure a he
had endeared himself to the children and residents alike. His successor had not
been appointed at the time of writing.187

Joseph Harold Brown

Joseph Brown served as head teacher for seven months. During the first war he
entered Mitcham Army Camp just two months before the armistice was signed.
Having never served overseas he became known as a Mitcham Anzac. Brown
road is named in his honour.
Owing to the resignation of Mr. Till from the Education Department, Mr. Joseph
H. Brown has been sent up to take charge of the local school. The school
committee has been appointed, and consists of the following gentlemen:-Mr. W.
Tait-Strahan (chairman), Mr. H Dyer, secretary), Messrs, Tucker, Munro,
Vogan, Stuckey and Hackett. It is intended to hold a meeting in the near future,
when it is hoped that various schemes will be introduced and discussed for the
betterment of existing conditions.188
Mr. Brown, the headmaster of the Lone Gum school has resigned his position as
from the end of October. Like his predecessor, Mr. Till, he has been smitten
with the blocking fever, and has entered upon a course as a trainee.189

Henry James Franklin

Henry Franklin served as a Private in the 50th Battalion in World War I. He
stayed as head teacher for four months.
After a delay of about a fortnight the Education Department have sent Mr. H. J.
Franklin from Eudunda to take charge of the Lone Gum School. Mr. Franklin
has expressed his intention of assisting the settlers in every way possible, and as
he is a keen sport he will be a valuable acquisition to the Sporting Committee of


Murray Pioneer, 10 Apr 1920

Murray Pioneer, 7 May 1920
189 Murray Pioneer, 5 Nov 1920


the Club. He comes to us with a fine record of service in the Education
Department, and has already won the confidence of the children with whom he
has become acquainted. As a soldier he served with the 50th Battalion, and was
wounded at Noreull just before the battle of Bullecourt in April, 1917.190
Mr. Franklin, the schoolmaster, arrived here on Saturday evening, and will open
school on Monday. Mr. L. Potts has undertaken the accommodation of the
teacher for a time, so his comfort is assured.191
Word has reached the settlement that we are again to have a change of teachers.
Mr. Franklin, who has been with us since the middle of November, will leave at
Easter and his successor, Mr A. E. McHugh, will take charge after the

Albert McHugh
Albert McHugh served as a Private in the 27th Battalion in World War I. He
stayed as head teacher for 17 months.
Lone Gum, April 11
Our new teacher, Mr. McHugh, has arrived and taken charge of the school. For
the present he has taken up his quarters in the tent supplied by the Building
Department and is being supplied with board by Mr. And Mrs. M. Cook. As the
tent is a very unsatisfactory residence for a school teacher the committee are
doing their utmost to obtain something more substantial.193

John Murphy
John Murphy stayed as head teacher for five months.
Mr. Murphy, who takes the reins at school on Monday arrived here on
Saturday, Mr. Murphy, prior to the transfer had charge of the Hog Bay School,
Mr. Murphy, the present teacher, is leaving the Education department shortly,
and is joining the railways.
Although only residing in the settlement for five months Mr. Murphy, who took
charge of the school in October last, through his interest and enthusiasm made
himself a firm favourite in the district, and it was only fitting that a farewell
evening should be tendered him as a small mark of appreciation of his work as
schoolmaster and as secretary of the local cricket club, in whose interest he
certainly had worked hard. The number of folk who came along to the hall on


Murray Pioneer, 14 Nov 1920

Murray Pioneer, 28 Jan 1921
192 Murray Pioneer, 1 Apr 1921
193 Murray Pioneer, 15 Apr 1921



Wednesday evening last bore testimony to the goodwill in which he is esteemed,

and a very happy and indeed jolly evening was spent.194

Felix Daniel Kuss

Following a period of five teachers in four years Mr. Felix Kuss took up the
position of head teacher at Monash. The soldier settlers of Monash judged the
character of a newly appointed teacher as much by their war service as by their
teaching experience. If there were any reservations about the appointment of a
teacher with no military service, and of German descent, then these concerns
were quickly allayed and Mr. Kuss became a popular character within the
School and wider community. He was head teacher for thirty two years until his
retirement in 1955, making him the longest serving teacher at the school. Born
in Mannum in 1890, one of ten children, he never married and died in 1978 at
age 87.
Mr. F. D. Kuss, the new head teacher of the school, arrived on Monday last to
take over his new duties.195
In 1945 a celebration was held for Mr. Kuss in recognition of his 21 years at
Monash Primary School.
As far as he was concerned his introduction to the settlement was on March 3,
1924, when he arrived to take charge. There were 47 students on the roll but by
1934, the peak year, the number had increased to 130. He said he liked the
people of the district, and said that he had never applied for a move for this
reason. He had never felt he wanted a change. Of his 31 years as a teacher in the
department 21 had been spent at Monash and he was proud of that fact. He had
received his promotion in the department as the school grew in status. Mr. Kuss
said that as a teacher his early ideas were to make the children themselves happy
and his school popular in the district and he had endeavoured to carry out those
Fellow teacher Mollie Sando (nee Mcaulley) recalled:
I was intrigued to find that he played his violin for singing lessons.197


Murray Pioneer, 29 Feb 1924

Murray Pioneer, 10 Mar 1924
196 Murray Pioneer, March 1945.
197 Mollie Sando memoirs, c2003.


Monash Primary School head teacher appointments.
Clem. W. Till
Joseph. H. Brown
Henry J. Franklin
Albert E. McHugh
John Murphy
Felix D. Kuss
Hartley K. Pitman
George W. Milne
Gordon W. Pearse
David L. Young
Lindsay S. Strong
B. E. Whitehead
Lindsay S. Strong

19 Jan 1920
12 Apr 1920
11 Nov 1920
4 Apr 1921
8 Oct 1923
4 Feb 1924
24 May 1955
9 Sep 1958
1 Jan 1968
1 Jan 1972
1 Jan 1985
29 Jan 1987
1 Feb 1988

In 1928 enrolments reached 50 and an assistant teacher was appointed to

teach the junior years. Enrolments peaked at 119 in 1935 and for most of the
1930s a third teacher was appointed. Student numbers varied considerably,
dropping to a low of 52 in 1949. Numbers rose again, peaking at 112 in 1959,
and 1954 marked the last year Monash operated as a two teacher school.198

School building
Lone Gum School, more accommodation necessary, 1921
We would again urge upon the responsible authorities the necessity for
improved educational facilities. The school building is a temporary wood and
iron structure, lined but unceiled. During the summer months the shade
temperature often reaches 110 degrees, while in winter a huge fire is needed to
keep the children warm. Two other matters that require attention are
accommodation for the teacher and a shelter shed for the children. As the
majority of the settlers have only three roomed cottages it is almost impossible
for them to accommodate an extra person. A good friend of the settlers, to whom
our best thanks are due, has been kind enough to donate a complete set of
bedroom furniture for the use of the teacher, so now it remains for the
Department to provide one or two rooms for the teacher's needs. Some time ago
the settlers decided to hold a working bee to erect a shelter shed at the school.
they were informed by Messrs. Anstey (then Minister of Repatriation) and Mr.
Lane (Chief Building Inspector) that material for the shed was in Berri and
would soon be erected at the school. Upon this working bee was abandoned; but
nothing more has been seen or heard of the promised shelter shed. 199
Unstable School building, 1923
rocks with every wind that blows
The Lone Gum and Monash Club has always taken an interest in educational
matters. The new school has been approved and was placed on the urgent list
eighteen months ago, and Mr. W. T. Strahan waited on the authorities last

Education Department gazette, State Library of South Australia.

Murray Pioneer, 25 Mar 1921.



October and on his return reported that the school had passed through all the
necessary, and devious paths of red tapeism and was in the last stage. The club
school committee, who have always worked harmoniously together, felt pleased
to know that after some years of hard work, they could now take a breather re
the school. Apparently the department did the same with the result that the
settlers are now girding up their loins to see what can be done in the matter.
Members of the Parliament for the district have not earned any laurels re the
school for their attitude, to say the least, has been one of ennui. The present
school building, when the wind blows from the east or west, sways 18 inches out
of the perpendicular and leaves the chimney standing in solitary grandeur. When
the wind blows from the north or south the ends and gable emulate the
movements of an accordion. The working teacher, Mr. McHugh, a returned
soldier, has the children so drilled that in a fraction of a second on the alarm
being given every child is more or less safely under a desk. So much for the ails
of war as applied to peace. Dr. L. Hayward, the health officer, has been asked by
the club to report on the building.200
New School at Monash, 1923
A telegram received at Monash during the week from Messrs. F. McMillan and
M. McIntosh, members of Parliament for the district, stated that the Cabinet had
agreed to the immediate erection of a school on a piece of land four acres in
area, near the recreation ground. The building at present used for school
purposes has long been condemned by the settlers. 201
Stone structure for Lone Gum, 1923
Messrs. McIntosh and McMillan, members for Albert, have informed The
Pioneer that they are in receipt of a communication from the Minister of
Education stating that a stone schoolroom, 24 by 24 feet, is to be erected at Lone
Gum, and that the money for this purpose is to be placed on the estimates this
year. Fencing and wire and a gate are being sent forward. The Architect-in-Chief
has been asked to prepare the necessary plans for the building. 202
Extensions opened by Minister on Empire Day, 1929
The new building which is practically a duplication of he original one, measures
24 ft. by 24ft. and has accommodation for 60 children. There are actually 43
children housed there now and they are receiving their early education under
Miss Beinke who is doing a very fine work indeed. The policy of providing
plenty of light and plenty of fresh air has not been neglected in the building, for
window space at any rate takes up practically the whole of two of the walls. The
room itself looks very bright and cheery. The recently formed Infants' Welfare
Club has started on its work and 7 of the pictures hung on the walls have been
presented by that club. On entering the room one is immediately impressed with
the bright frieze, illustrating various nursery rhymes and attractively coloured in
water colours. Wall boards are provided, the drawings on these adding to the
cheerfulness of the room as well as serving their chief purpose, that of
instructing the children. The "Busy-work" cupboard is an innovation. In this

Murray Pioneer, 19 Mar 1923.

Murray Pioneer, 20 Apr 1923.
202 Murray Pioneer, 1923.


cupboard are kept various games, cards, numbers etc. At certain times the
children are allowed to use these and they are able to choose any of the contents.
The object is that whilst they are "playing" they are, at the same time, learningpossibly counting or spelling. Such is modern education.
The full school now comprises the two rooms, each 24 by 24 and has available
accommodation for 120 scholars. Mr. Kuss still maintains the absolute
confidence of all settlers in the district and the work going on under his
supervision is a credit to him. There are 81 names on the roll at present: the
average attendance being 75. Better facilities are now available for the
woodwork class which has the advantage of having a special room, the lobby of
the original building having been altered for this purpose. The surroundings of
the school buildings are well kept, the trees are doing well and the gardens well
cared for.203
School accommodation taxed, 1934.
The Monash school has been taxed to its utmost for quite a time now, there
being more scholars than the accommodation provided. Last week this was
relieved by the transfer of grades 4 and 5 to the Institute building, the
Department having hired the hall and provided seating accommodation for the
children of those grades. Mr. Stokes has charge of the new department. The
present Institute building was the original schoolroom of the district, although it
has been considerably strengthened and improved since those days.

The school rented the Institute building for classes up until 1938.
In times of high wind-and these were frequent-the whole building would sway
as much as six inches from the brick chimney. So, for safety, at a word of
command the children would dive down under their desks until the swaying
became less threatening. Part of the roof lifted, and the loose sheets flapped

School band
As early as 1925 children learnt to play the fife and formed a small school band
under the guidance of Mr. Kuss. Later Mr. Martin Edward McAvenna taught at
Monash Primary School from 1936 to 1938 and was the driving force behind the
school band.
Mr. McAvenna interested himself in the formation of a band as soon as he came
to Monash in January 1936, and has worked exceptionally hard in coaching the
children ever since. The only equipment when he came to Monash was the
drum, but he had ideas for the future and commenced the formation of the band
in earnest. A design for a uniform submitted by him was taken up by the ladies
of the district and they worked unceasingly in an effort to produce a uniform of
which they might feel proud. The appearance and results have justified their


Murray Pioneer, 31 May 1929.

Murray Pioneer, 7 Jun 1934.



The local band made their first public appearance at Barmera in September 1936
and entered their first competition at Renmark about a month later, when they
came second to Renmark North. Brian Lock the drum major gained first place
for his work on that occasion. At Barmera a little later the Band gained second
place in the test selection, first in the street march and first in the quick step.
There were 41 in the Band in 1936, but there was a shortage of 12 when the
school reopened in 1937. Every available player was used for the contests this
year, and the fact that there were no reserves on which to draw made the success
of the school and its band all the more creditable.
Competition work this year commenced with the Renmark Jubilee Celebrations,
where they met some of the city bands in contest for the first time. Here they
obtained second place to Mitcham in the aggregate .205
Monash School band came second at the Renmark competition against five
other schools. Bryan Lock from Monash was awarded a cup for best Drum
Drum Major B. Lock led the fine Monash band of 24 in attractive maroon and
white uniforms with pill box caps at the regulation angle.
Music adjudicators comments. Monash Blue Danube. Band plays pretty well
altogether, but the tune is definitely not good, and one or two wrong notes creep
in edgeways. I think a little more attention should be paid to dynamic contrasts.
Bass drum has bad tone; probably this would be overcome if it was tightened a
little, and I think a retard in the first bar after D C would be effective.
Accelerando at finish quite a good idea, but band not quite together. Rhythm
throughout quite good.206
Monash School bands Success, 1936
Give best performance at Barmera Centenary Concert
A fine achievement was recorded by the Monash School Band in the Barmera
Centenary School bands contest on Saturday afternoon, for they not only won
the contest but in doing so vanquished the redoubtable Renmark North
The contest elicited much interest from the crowd and was really the main
feature during the afternoons events. Five bands competed, and Monash carried
off the majority of the honours with two firsts, in the street march and diagram
quickstep, and a second, in the test selection. Mr. McAvenna, bandmaster of
Monash, must feel that the children have given him his just reward for the
painstaking efforts he has made to train them thoroughly. The music judge, in
his comments, referred to the general high standard, and spoke very well of the
girls band (Monash). The judge said that in the selection the standard was very
good and in some cases very high. The appearance was also very good, and few
lacked precision. No. 1 band (Monash) had in some instances appeared faultless.


Source unknown.
Murray Pioneer, 24 Sep 1936.


The judges comments on Monashs diagram quickstep was as follows: A
marvellous display. Congratulations on your very fine performance.207
School band war cry208
Monash, Monash, Mon Mon Mon,
Are we any Tres bon bon [very good]?
Tickle-oh, the piccolo,
Tootle-oo the flute,
Mon. . . Mon. . . Monash.
The band wore the school colours of maroon and white. [1936]
Opportunity was taken of the occasion to make a presentation to Mrs. A. J.
Smith, who had devoted such a lot of time and had given such valuable
assistance in designing and supervising the making of the school band uniforms.
The members of the Infant Welfare Club, by means of sewing afternoons, had
made the uniforms. As a token of appreciation a presentation of a framed and
inscribed photograph of the band was made to Mrs. Smith and Mrs. E. R. Moss,
as president of the Monash Infant Welfare Club. The proceeds of the concert
were devoted to school funds.209
Diggers' Sons and Daughters [1937]
The success of the Monash Band at the South Australian Public Schools' Bands'
Champion ship at Glenelg was popular with the people that witnessed the
colourful parades. There was quite a medley of colours among the 11 bands that
competed, and the dapper drum majors and their mascots presented quite a
professional and finished appearance as they led their charges down the main
streets of the Bay to the oval. Monash Band, which carried off the aggregate
points, was composed of 25 girls and four boys. Most popular with the public,
Monash looked extremely neat in their white pleated skirts (Scottish effect) and
maroon jackets, and red and white pillbox caps set jauntily on their girlish locks.
All the girls and boys in this band attend the Monash School, but many of them
will be leaving to join the Berri Secondary School shortly. Nearly all are
daughters and sons of returned soldiers who have settled on the Murray in
comparatively recent years.210
Final appearance of championship band, 1938.
Following the successful year of the Monash School Band, and realizing that
their numbers would be seriously depleted in 1938, it was arranged that a final
appearance of the band would be made at the annual school break-up concert
which was to have been held in December last. Due to the paralysis outbreak,
however, all arrangements had to be cancelled.
The idea was not abandoned, however, but considerable difficulty was
experienced in getting the various "Bandsmen" together again, and it was not


Murray Pioneer, 29 Oct 1936.

Murray Pioneer, date unknown.
209 Murray Pioneer, 15 Dec 1936.
210 The Mail (Adelaide), 4 Dec 1937.



until Saturday, May 14 that anything like the number could be mustered, though
even then the band was not complete. There was a large gathering of spectators,
and the day was most favourable for an outside function.
Several of the trophies won by the band were on exhibition. These included the
Sturt shield for school band championship1937, the Holdfast Band and Optimist
Society championship shield for grand aggregate 1937; two cups won at
Renmark contest: the cup won by Brian Lock for the best school drum major
and trophies won at Barmera.211
Final appearance of championship band, 1938.
During the afternoon the championship band played several items and gave a
demonstration of counter marching which, in spite of the fact that it is six
months since it was in training, was very well carried out. There was a feeling of
regret in the minds of all present who could not but realize that there was little
possibility of Monash boasting a band again, due largely to the peculiar position
of the district and the limited number of scholars available at the school. It was
fortunate indeed that one so gifted in the work of instructing school bands as Mr.
McAvenna should have been stationed in the district at a time when the number
on the roll was at its peak.212
Reference was naturally made to the success of the school band which contained
the following list: Renmark competition, one first, two seconds, and one third;
Barmera two firsts and one second; Gawler, five seconds; Glenelg, first in
selection; first in championship of S.A.; second in quickstep; third in street
march; third in drum major.213

School sports
Each year Monash competed in the Berri Barmera and Associated Schools
Sports Association combined sports day. The venue alternated between Berri
oval and Barmera oval.
When the Combined Schools' Sports were held in Berri on June 1, 1928, the
children joined in the fun. Monash School won the silver cup, which was the
beginning of the fine record of the next ten years, when they won the cup on
eight occasions.214
In 1946 the seventeenth annual meeting took place at Berri with the final points
order being; Berri, Barmera, Winkie, Loveday, Cobdogla, Monash and
In 1958 twelve schools competed in individual and team events including boys
hurdles, boys obstacle race, girls skipping, staff relay, boys sack relay, relay ball


Murray Pioneer, 26 May 1938

Murray Pioneer, 26 May 1938.
213 Murray Pioneer, 19 May 1938.
214 Berri: Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.
215 Murray Pioneer, 5 Sep 1946.



race, bob spry, goal-throwing, boys orange race, leg relay race and archers
and tunnels.216
In 1959 changes introduced to form a more balanced competition, with twelve
schools divided into three groups. The larger schools of Berri and Barmera
made up group A, with the smaller schools making up group B and C. Monash
competed in the group B against Cobdogla, Loveday, Moorook, and Winkie.
Combined Schools Sports results
1928 Monash won the silver cup in the competition for smaller schools.
1936 Monash won Cup for the 4th time.
Monash came third in overall points.
1943 14th event, Silver cup.
1944 2nd place, defeated by Winkie.
1946 Seventeenth annual meeting.
Monash placed 6th place out of seven teams.
1958 Won the cup for the 11th time.
1959 Won B division Seekamp Cup.
1962 Did not compete.
1964 Won B division.
A Shield was awarded to the overall points winner, and a silver cup to the group
winner of the smaller primary schools.

School Football
Monash played occasional games of cricket and football against nearby
Riverland Primary Schools. In June 1962 Winkie; 23 goals and 13 behinds
defeated Monash; 1 goal, 1 behind. Best players for Monash were G Delphin, H
Nielsen (1 goal), R Harris, R Henwood and D Sonntag.217
Monash formed a school football and basketball team in 1938 in a 4 team
competition consisting of Berri, Winkie, Glossop and Monash.218

Anzac essay
Each Anzac day the school held a literary competition on the subject of Anzacs
in World War I. Prizes were awarded for best work in girls and boys sections. In
1947 the subject was expanded to include both World War I and II.

Student activities
Boys took wood work classes from the head teacher, Mr. Kuss. School was
closed for a fortnight during 1925 while Mr. Kuss attended word work training in


Berri Community News, 4 Sep 1958.

The Berri News, 13 Jun 1962.
218 Murray Pioneer 23 Jun 1938.



Each Tuesday and Friday afternoon we have sewing lessons. Miss Eileen
Richardson is our sewing mistress. We are learning to knit. I am knitting a
The teacher made a kite the other day. It is higher than me, being 4 feet 11
inches in height. When the teacher put it up he let me hold it and dragged me
along a little way.220
At school we play rounders and I think it is a very nice game.221
Each ANZAC day an essay competition on the subject of the ANZACS at
Gallipoli and the winning entry was awarded a prize.
In 1925 the children tendered their own gardens in the school grounds. The
boys grew vegetables and the girls grew flowers.

Infant Welfare club and School Committee

The Monash School Infant Welfare club was formed in 1929.
There was an attendance of 22 parents at the meeting called on Thursday last to
form an Infants Welfare Club at Monash. Miss Beinke was elected to the chair
and explained the purposes of the suggested club. Now that the additions to the
school were ready there were a number of items which were necessary for the
teaching of the children who were to be housed in the new rooms, those of
Grades 1 to 3. The furnishing of the rooms for the younger children was a
responsibility for the parents and amongst the necessary items were a piano,
mats, cupboards and a number of other smaller items. This new club would have
a separate purpose from that of the school committee although there would be
some matters in which both would co-operate. The following officers were
elected: President, Miss Beinke; secretary, Mrs Harris; committee, Mesdames
Johanson, Massey, Harvey, Gainsborough, and Soderberg.222
The gardens surrounding the school had been considerably improved and the
school yard had been regraded and bitumenised on three sides. The gift of a
piano from the Infant Welfare Club was of general service to the school. A
school bell and belfry was the gift of Mr. J. Heward in memory of his late wife
who had always taken a keen interest in school affairs.223
The welfare club shared with the school committee the expense of installing an
air conditioner in the Infants room, ready for use this summer. A new drum
purchased recently was used for the first time at the combined school sports.224


Letter from Mavis March, Murray Pioneer, 7 Aug 1925.

Letter from Kathleen Cornwall, Murray Pioneer, 2 Oct 1925.
221 Letter from Agnes Nielsen, Murray Pioneer, 9 Sep 1925.
222 Murray Pioneer, 25 Apr 1929.
223 Murray Pioneer, 19 May 1938.
224 The Berri News, 17 Oct 1961.


Monster working bee
Under the guidance of Mr. G. Hunt (chairman of school committee) a working
bee has erected a fence around the agricultural plots and the school residence
allotment. It was good to see parents come along and help in this project.225
25th anniversary of the Welfare Club
On Wednesday, 29th Sept., the Monash Welfare Club celebrated its 25th
anniversary, there was a good attendance of members of Monash and
surrounding clubs. Mr. Kuss, head teacher, in his address, traced the history of
the Welfare Clubs. It is wonderful what great things have been done for our
school over the years; and right down to the present day they still continue, said
Mr. Kuss. Not a year passes but some major project is completed, to say
nothing of the many smaller items which come along so often and receive the
attention of your members. The 150 ladies present had a most enjoyable

First school building 1920.


Berri Community News, 1 Jul 1954.

Berri Community News, 7 Oct 1954.



Clem. W. Till at Lone Gum School, 8 March 1920. Caption on the back reads
My last school, mostly children of diggers.

School building, 1944. Photo by Mollie Sando.



School building 1952.

Foundations being excavated for library extensions, c1995.

Monash Primary School collection.



First teacher at Monash, Clem Till,

1920. State Library of South Australia.

Felix Kuss 1944. Photo by Mollie Sando.



Berri c1930, Monash school children marching holding their school banner at
the head of the parade. Photograph courtesy of the State Library of South

1934 Headmaster Felix Kuss and student Darcy Jury planting sugar gums.
Monash Primary School collection.



1944 grade 1, 2 & 3. Mollie Sando collection. Josie Sando is front row, second
from right.

Grades 1, 2, 3 and 4, 1953. Monash Primary School collection.



Grade 2/ 3, 1971. Back row: Miss May, Tony Heward, ?, Keith Andary, ?, ?, ?, ?
Third row: Roger Sando, Terry Fiebig, Phillip Braunack, George, Anne Morgen,
?, Michael Stratman, ?, Second row: ?, ?, Wendy Golledge, Maha Andary, ?,
Alison Telfer, Rosslyn Webber, Kathy Cinc, ?, Front row: Michael Polson, ?, ?,
?, Peter Cinc

Year 6 & 7, 1975. Back row; Tom Svetec, Michael Stratman, Michael Mau,
George, Phillip Braunack, ?, Roger Sando, ?. Second row; Sean Sawyer, ?, ?,
Anne Morgen, Rosslyn Webber, Keith Andary. First row; Bettina Schinkel,?,
Maha Andary, David Young (Headmaster), Alison Telfer, Niki Samaras, Kathy


Lindsay Strong, second longest serving head teacher at Monash.




Monash School band, 1937.

Back row: Darcy Nielsen, Betty Evans, Thelma Evans, Shirley Luby, Jewel
Whitelaw, Betty Soderberg, Blanka Tassy, Fay King, Erica Hammond.
Second row: teacher- Martin McAvenna, Judith Cox, Gwenda Harding, Pat
Barry, Maureen Fisher, Normie Brown, Joyce McLaren, Stan Dyer, Audrey
Cook, Mary Bollenhagen, Phyl Dyer, head teacher-Felix Kuss.
Third row: Beryl Soderberg, Phyl Millington, Barbara Worman, Bill Millington,
Dene Whitelaw, Bruce Hocking, Megan March, Connie Hallam.
Front row: Cynthia Bigg, Bill Harris, June Traeger, Gwenda March, Adrienne
Lock, Brian Lock, Betty Henwood, Janet Bigg, Yvette Maddern, Lloyd Wuttke,
John Johanson.

Geoffrey Sando, April 1971.



Inter school sports day, Barmera oval c1973.

Inter school sports day, Barmera oval c1973. Headmaster David Young
standing at back, second left of Monash School banner.



Recreation ground
A meeting on 29 August 1920 proposed the following motion:
That the Director of Irrigation be written to, and asked to hand over the 11 acres
that has been reserved for a sports ground in the township of Monash.227
The Sports Committee are also moving forward, and the recreation ground was
the scene of a working bee on Saturday, when a portion of the ground was
cleared for tennis courts. About 20 men were present, and the ladies provided
afternoon tea for the workers. Thus business and pleasure were pleasantly and
profitably combined.228
Mr. Henwood was elected to be constructional engineer. But it was not until
May 16 of 1922 that fencing material was delivered to the grounds.
The Recreation Ground on the Monash side has also been fenced and a double
row of trees is to be planted all round. A cement cricket pitch has now been put
down at the Recreation Reserve and the ground is being levelled preparatory to
making a tennis court. In the days to come the residents hope to have a stone
building erected on the recreation ground.229
For some time the recreation ground has been regarded as the property of the
settlement, and yet actually has not been under any definite control. Certain
expenditure had been incurred and until some responsible body look over the
liabilities the ground still remained under the control of the Irrigation
Commission. Various bodies had used the grounds. The Tennis Club had spent a
considerable sum of money and had made improvements to the portion leased
them. However there had never been any definite control of the whole ground
and so the Lone Gum and Monash Settlers Club decided to take a hand and
make improvements from time to time.230
A general meeting of citizens was called by the president of the Monash
Progress Association (Mr. A, B, Mortimer) on the evening of June 5 to discuss
and determine wether or not the project of putting down a turf oval at Monash
was practicable, and to what extent the citizens of the area would be
In 1950 the R.S.L. donated 300 to the Monash Associated Sports Club. In
1951 a start was made on buildings. The newly formed Bowling Club made
rapid headway in scrub clearing, excavating and preparing seven rinks, with
room for expansion.


Murray Pioneer 29 Aug 1920

Murray Pioneer, 19 Nov 1920
229 Murray Pioneer, 6 Oct 1922
230 Murray Pioneer, 18 Jan 1926.
231 Murray Pioneer, Jun 1947.



The sports association continues to improve facilities at the Monash oval. The
conveniences have at last been finished and the playing surface has been heavily
rolled, but the erection of new dressing rooms is held up for want of cement. The
stone and sand required for these rooms have been offered for next to nothing,
but the Building Materials Office has refused a permit for the essential
ingredient cement.232
Monash combined sports club rooms were opened by Mr John Henwood on
30th August 1987.

The first tennis court in the area was set down in block 170 owned by Mr. E. A.
Bottrill. Before 1923 enthusiasts joined the Toorak Tennis Club on block 135,
then owned by Mr. L. W. A. Peacock. A tennis club was formed at Monash in
At a meeting of tennis enthusiasts held in the Recreation Hall on Friday last
presided over by Mr. L. Maddern, it was unanimously decided to form a tennis
club at Monash. Mr. Hocking (who won the River Singles Championship at
Tintra two years in succession) addressed the meeting, and was attentively
listened to. Messrs. Minnis, K. Hocking, A. Sando, L. Maddern and L. Bigg
were elected as a committee with Mr. J .H. Brown as secretary to investigate
matters in connection with the courts and report to a further meeting to be held
on Friday, April 13th.233
Progress was swift.
Tennis is booming at Monash. A well attended meeting of enthusiasts was held
recently and it was then decided to make three courts of marl and to top dress
them with tar next year. These courts are expected to be ready in from three
weeks to a month. To join the club costs a gentleman 5/ and the subscription
thereafter is 4/ a quarter. In the case of a lady the fee is 10/6 a year. The officers
of the club are:president Mr McHugh, captain Mr. Hocking, vice-captain Mr
Sexton, secretary Mr. L. Maddern, committee Messrs. Brown, Mawby, Bigg and
Shaughnessy and ground committee Messrs. Hunt and Bigg.234
New courts were rapidly established.
The blockers in the Monash and Lone Gum area are determined to have tennis
courts. Fourteen of them with nine drays got busy last [weekend]. They stopped
to have some afternoon tea prepared by Messrs. Maddern, Mawby and Hunt.
Today, if the rain does not stop them, they hope to complete a second court. The
day tentatively fixed for the opening is May 26.235


Berri Community News, 2 Jul 1952.

Murray Pioneer, 10 April 1923
234 Murray Pioneer, 20 April 1923
235 Murray Pioneer, 11 May 1923


Courts were officially opened.
The Monash and Lone Gum tennis clubs courts (three) were officially opened
on Saturday afternoon in the presence of a large crowd of tennis enthusiasts. Mr.
McHugh, the clubs president, in a few well chosen remarks in which he
specially thanked the members who had given so freely of their time in
preparing the courts, asked Mr. V. Cock of Berri to perform the opening
ceremony. Mr. Cock, in a happy speech, said it gave him a great deal of pleasure
to declare the courts open and deemed it little short of miraculous to see such
fine courts prepared in such a short time. They were an outstanding tribute to the
members who had so freely given of their time, labour and money to bring about
the result. He congratulated the club upon having in their captain Mr. K.
Hocking, the championship of the river and wished the club every success.
Amid hearty applause he then served the first ball.236

In December 1923 storm damage to the courts required the club to practically
remake them all. In April 1924 an Easter tennis carnival was held to raise funds
for the District trained Nursing Society Berri branch (D.T.N.S). The three newly
created courts were in first class order.
In May 1924 the first Annual General Meeting announced plans to extend the
watering service on three new courts to include all courts. On 26 Jan 1925 the
first club tournament was held. Upgrade to watering services was completed in
July 1925 and about 40 spent on improvements to courts and sheds.
Salt trouble, 1936
The salt trouble has developed to such an extent on the Monash Tennis Courts as
to almost prevent further play under existing conditions. At a special meeting of
the club held recently the matter was fully discussed and endeavours are now
being made to put down bitumen courts with a good metal base. 237
The foundations for three courts is now being put down, consisting of a thick
layer of limestone, and will be surfaced with bitumen. It is hoped that this will
cope with the salt problem and provide tennis accommodation for many years to
Monash Opening Day, 1936
The Monash Tennis Clubs opening day for the season was held on Saturday,
this being the opening also of the three new bitumen courts. There was a good
attendance of players and the courts were officially declared open by Mr. S. R.
At the annual meeting of the club the officers elected were President, Mr. E. A.
Bottrill; secretary and treasurer, Mr. Geoff Maddern; assistant secretary, Mr. C.
McLaren; captain, Mr. J. H. Brown; committee, in addition to the above and the
B Grade captain (to be appointed), Messrs. S. R. McLaren, S. Wade, W. Wade
and L.A. Bigg; delegates to association, Messrs. E. A. Bottrill and J. H. Brown.

Murray Pioneer, 2 Jun 1923

Monash Pioneer, 13 Apr 1936.
238 Murray Pioneer, 26 May 1936.



It was decided to enter two teams, an A and a B, provided sufficient players

were available.239
In 1938 Monash finished 5th out of six teams.
Outstanding players like K. B. Hocking, J. H. Brown, L. H. Maddern and S.
Wade captained the teams for many years before World War II, so that often
Monash won both A and B Grade pennant tennis. The 1939-40 tennis
season was the most successful yet. There were three teams competing,
including some outstanding junior players. Then came enlistment. The Monash
Club went into recess until it was reformed in 1945.240
In late 1945 Monash entered both an A and B grade team into the Upper
Murray Lawn tennis Association (UMLTA) competition.
Mr. E. A. Bottrill, the former president, and Mr. R. Nielsen, the former
secretary, were re-elected. R. Nielsen has been captain, and he and his brother
Darcy were among the top players in the Upper Murray Associations. As a
doubles pair they are hard to beat. Mr. L. A. Bigg retains his interest in the club
and acts as a club auditor.
Since reopening the club has reconditioned the courts and added a fourth. With
about 30 playing members, both senior and junior, the committee is hoping that
the clubs early records will continue. One of the most enthusiastic workers for
the club since World War II has been Mr. Gordon Smith, whose interest in the
young members has done so much to raise the standard of play among the
Monash juniors.241
In 1946 Monash again entered teams in both the A and B grades. The A grade
comprised Loxton (2 teams), Berri, Barmera, Glossop, Monash and Winkie and
Renmark Town. The same towns were represented in the B grade with the
addition of Moorook (2 teams), Cobdogla (2 teams), Kingston and Lyrup. It was
necessary to divide the B grade competition into 2 groups of six with Monash
playing in the East group. In 1949 Monash competed in the B grade but were
seriously outclassed in the 11 team competition and came bottom of the
premiership table with no wins after 13 rounds.
It was decided to field teams in the A and BII grades of the UMLTA. The
retiring secretary reported that although 80 had been spent top dressing the
courts, the club was still in a sound financial position. The club is endeavouring
to make a drive for new members, and would welcome any New Australians
who would like to join, and thereby help the club as well as mixing with the
local players.242


Murray Pioneer, 29 Sep 1936.

Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.
241 Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.
242 Murray Pioneer, 20 Sep 1951.


Monash brothers dual win at tennis
Tony and John Fundak, members of the Monash Tennis Club, won two doubles
events in the age tennis tournament held on the Berri courts between Christmas
and New Year.
Seasons tennis performance, 1960
[Second] best performance of the top players was that of Bob Nielsen, of
Monash, who had won 12 matches of 14, only losing on both occasions to his
brother Darcy [of Loxton].
Mrs L. Nielsen, of Monash, had a very good season winning 12 matches out of
Triple title winnner, 1968
Howard Nielsen, of Monash, who was recently selected in the Linton Cup, State
under 19 team was the outstanding player at the Upper Murray open age tennis
tournament winning three titles in the senior boys events.
Nielsen won both the boys under 20 and under 18 singles and also the under 18
doubles partnered by Graham Sando, of Winkie.
Gary Wright, of Monash, won the boys under 14 singles and also the doubles
partnered by Neil Sando of Winkie.244

A & B grades
A, B & C grades
5 teams entered in UMLTA

In 1921 Glossop football club was comprised of many soldier settlers from Lone
Gum, Glossop and Winkie and so became the Central Football Club.
Owing to the fact that the club is composed of members from all the new soldier
settlements it was felt that the name Glossop was misleading. It was therefore
discarded and the club is now to be known as the Central Club.245
In 1924 and 1925 Monash fielded its own A grade football club wearing brown
and gold colours.
The newly formed football club plays its first association match on Saturday
next when they meet the Barmera team. On the last two Saturdays scratch
matches have been played on the clubs grounds and from the general play it is
expected that the team chosen will not be last on the list at the close of the

Murray Pioneer, 24 Mar 1960.

Murray Pioneer, 4 Jan 1968.
245 Murray Pioneer, 5 Apr 1921.



season. On Saturday several members turned out in the clubs colours, with
guernseys of brown and gold, black trousers and stockings, brown and gold.
They look some swells!246
Debut match of 1924, Barmera 5-13 defeated Monash 4-7.
The Upper Murray Football Association opened their season on Saturday, when
Barmera were at home to Monash. The weather was squally, a nasty wind
blowing diagonally across the oval. Monash who were making their debut in
football under the captaining of G. Gale are a hefty team and tall. As a first
performance they created a good impression and played in the best spirit. The
play on the whole was good, and at times very spectacular, but there was a fair
amount of ground work and scrambling no doubt due to the game being the first
of the season. Monash are a tall team and did good marking, altogether making a
good show of their first game. The game opened evenly with the wind in the
visitor's favor, and the ball was first one end and then the other.247
Monash finished the 1924 season in last position but they were not
Last years results have not discouraged the footballers at all and they believe it
is better to have played and lost than never to have played at all. Also there is
another saying about the last shall be first and it is their ambition to obtain that
The club was disbanded at the end of the 1925 season after again coming last.
After the war a new Monash football club was formed in 1946 (1948?) and wore
the colours red and blue. In 1950 they moved from the B grade to the A
grade making up a six team competition.
Monash made their entry into A grade football on Saturday by playing BarmeraCobdogla on Monash Oval. Although the Barmera side were much too strong
for the young Monash side and kicked eighteen goals seventeen behinds to four
goals four, the game was not by any means devoid of interest, as the young
team fought on tenaciously all the afternoon and at times played some very
good football.
One unfortunate happening during the match was the injury sustained by Kevin
Henwood, being forced out of bounds he came in contact with one of the posts
that are far too close to the boundary and in trying to save himself had the
misfortune to break his left wrist. Kevin has shown great promise and he will be
badly missed in the team who are short of reserves.249
Monash registered their first and only win of the 1950 season in a home game
against Waikerie, 15-9 to 10-13. The end of season review was another

Murray Pioneer, 11 May 1924.

Murray Pioneer, 17 May 1924.
248 Murray Pioneer, 13 Mar 1925.
249 Murray Pioneer, Sep 1950.



Members of the Monash Football Club staged their Scarlet and Blue Revue in
the Monash Memorial Hall on Friday, Sept. 1. The event, which has been
eagerly awaited by the local folk, proved far more interesting and amusing than
anticipated. The packed house was generous in its applause and the boys are to
be commended for a splendid effort.
Directed by Brian Nicholas and compared by Robert Nielsen, the evening went
with a swing. The cast was all male with the exception of Miss Janice Frick,
who supplied the music at the piano.
Blisterella, featuring Frank OCallaghan as Blisterella, John Maddocks as
Agg, John Henwood Ann, Clyde Elleway as the fairy godmother, Kev Henwood
as Sir Charles, Brian Nicholas Prince Charming, and Ken Maddocks as the page
boy, created roars of laughter. The acting was something rare and peculiar to the
Monash boys. Clyde Elleway as the fairy godmother was admirably suited to the
part; his slim graceful figure enabled him to give an excellent portrayal of that
character, while his silver toned voice almost created perfection.
The dance. The Dying Duck, performed by George Williams and John Nixon
(with apologies to Pavlova and Robert Helpmann), and assisted by a ballet of
beautifully dressed females in pink low backed and front costumes gave a
delightful display. Entertaining as lightly as a pair of flying saucers, the dancers
continued to twirl and twist with delicacy and ease, disclosing far more agility
than was their custom on the football field.
A hoola dance by George Williams, accompanied by Ron Martin beating a drum
and dolefully droaning a song he learnt from a carrier in New Guinea, was well
received. Several other sketches created great fun. These were supported by a
song, Rose of Tralee, by Brian Nicholas, a duet Galstone Bay, by Kevin
Henwood and Brian Nicholas; ventriloquist Mr. J. H. Dowling, and song Val
The effort was a very excellent one and Monash folk sincerely hope that the
boys will be inspired with their success and think out other forms of
entertainment for the settlement.
1951 season
It was decided to re-enter A Grade for the 1951 season, and it was also decided
that the club endeavour to form a Colts team for the season.250
Monash finished the 1951 season with three wins, sufficient to place them
second last in the premiership rankings, above Waikerie. The Colts team was
placed last, with no wins.
Winners were: fairest and most brilliant, Trev Mortimer; most attentive to
training, Paul Warnecke; most consistent, Bob Wallace; most improved, Dick
Mortimer; 19th man on most occasions, Basil Inquist; placed man, Norm Penna;

Murray Pioneer, 15 Mar 1951.



best utility man, Kevin Henwood. Colts fairest and most brilliant, John Viney;
attention to training, Ron Smith; consistent, John Fundak, placed man, Ken
1953 season
Although still to win a match, the return of Morrell and Hamood should
strengthen the team. A noticeable feature of the last few games has been the
ability to hold its opponents for the first two or three quarters and then appear to
tire badly in the finish suggesting that with further hard training, a win may not
be too far distant. Typical of the enthusiasm of its members is the example of
John Henwood, who although now studying pharmacy at the University, travels
up from Adelaide each week-end to play in the side.252
1954 Season
The Monash football team tried hard in all games and merits praise for its
efforts, but results show it is just not good enough. Many football followers
maintain that this side would be better suited in B grade. But this would leave
an uneven number of teams in the league with a consequent unsatisfactory bye.
Can a team be found, then, to replace Monash?
Thus, if to demote one team to B grade would leave an odd number in A
grade, and if no satisfactory replacement is to be found, the only solution is to
demote two teams. On performance, these would be Waikerie and Monash. This
latter team could then combine with Barmera, making four even sides.253
Monash went on to play two more seasons in the A grade. In 1957 Monash
merged with Barmera to become Barmera-Monash. They players wore red &
yellow and were known as the Pelicans.
In 1962 Barmera-Monash were minor premiers and played a sensational drawn
Grand Final, Loxton 12-8 to Barmera Monash 10-20. In the rematch Loxton;
13-4 defeated Barmera-Monash; 6-13.254 Best players for Barmera Monash
included J. Henwood and J. Fundak.
Around 1980 the strip changed to light and dark blue and they became known
as the Kangaroos. Barmera-Monash dominated the 1980s, contesting nine
grand finals and winning the premiership six times, 1983-1987 and again in
1989. In 2006 a proposal was made to change the club name to Barmera but
this was defeated.


Murray Pioneer, 1 Nov 1951.

Berri Community News, 4 Jun 1953.
253 Berri Community News, 15 Jul 1954.
254 The Berri News, 20 Jun 1962.



1957 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1989 -

Football results255
Upper Murray B Grade FA : Monash FC was formed.
Upper Murray B Grade FA : Monash participated.
Upper Murray B Grade FA : Monash's final season in this league.
Upper Murray FA : Monash commenced.
Upper Murray FA : Monash participated.
Upper Murray FA : Monash's final season.
Upper Murray FA : Barmera and Monash to form
Riverland Football League Grand Final
Barmera-Monash 13.14.92 def. Renmark 12.9.81.
Riverland Football League Grand Final
Barmera-Monash 16.14.110 def. Loxton 11.9.75.
Riverland Football League Grand Final
Barmera-Monash 16.13.109 def. Renmark 12.13.85
Riverland Football League Grand Final
Barmera-Monash 14.13.97 def. Loxton Nth 13.9.87.
Riverland Football League Grand Final
Barmera-Monash 17.14.116 def. Renmark 9.11.65.
Riverland Football League Grand Final
Barmera-Monash 14.15.99 def. Loxton 11.10.76.

In August 1921 a cricket pitch was completed and a cricket committee elected,
consisting of Mr. Bottrill, Mr. Dwyer and Mr. Mortimer (secretary). Secretaries of
surrounding clubs were to be written to with a view to forming a cricket
In 1923 a cricket club was formed and Monash fielded teams in the association
A and B grade competition. In the 1924-25 season Monash came second to
Berri, followed by Barmera, Glossop and Winkie.
In 1923 the Monash Cricket Club was quite a power to be reckoned with. There
were two teams playing in the association, and Link Richardson was the
captain. He was ably supported by K. B. Hocking, H. and R. Nixon, M. Dwyer,
and the Paddick brothers, F. Dyer, P. B. Thomas, C. Warnecke, A. Mortimer and
others. The A men flourished for nearly four years. Transport was by means of
Arthur Hunts Flyer, if it were available, or more often than not, by horseback
or spring dray. The inevitable excuse if a player was late was that he could not
catch his horse. The most memorable match was that played at Barmera in 1926,
when all Monash were out for nine runs, and D. Paddick scored seven of these.
In the same season the Monash team made 500 runs at Monash in a match
against the Winkie team.
In 1928 the B Grade team were premiers, with P. B. Thomas as captain. The
following year they were runners-up, but not until 1939 did they again become
premiers once more, when Jack Dixon captained the side. Among outstanding
players was the late Peter Parham, who topped the B Grade batting and
bowling average for three years in succession. Except for the 1950 and 1952

http://www.footypedia.com, 2006



seasons, Monash B Grade team has taken to the field every year since the club
was started.256
In 1926 the A grade team was disbanded and only the B grade team was
played. In 1951 Monash had no A grade side so three aspiring Monash players
played for Glossop.
Glossop is being very well served the outstanding performance to date has
been the patient 88 not-out by young Paul Warnecke against the steady Barmera
attack. He, with two other Monash juniors R, Mortimer and J. Nixon, has
rejuvenated the Glossop team, and cricketers everywhere wish the lads much
success in the senior ranks. Meanwhile Monash [B grade side] is piling up
points, defeating Glossop outright (not only by an innings but without losing a
wicket). 257
Mr. H . Brown (chairman of the Berri District Council) presented the various
trophies won during the year. He congratulated the club on its very successful
year; although they had not come top they had acquitted themselves very well,
losing only one match, unfortunately that was the final. The batting trophy, a
shield, went to Frank OCallaghan, with an average of 35; bowling, also a
shield, to Harry Keightley with the splendid average of 6; the fielding trophy to
John Nixon (a beautiful Gunn and Moore bat donated by Mr. Ern Harding).258
A new malthoid (tarred felt) pitch was laid in September 1948.


Cricket results
A and B grade teams formed.
A grade team disbanded
B grade premiers.
B grade premiers.
B grade premiers
no team
no team

Lawn bowls
New bowling club at Monash 1951
The Monash Bowling Club has held its first meeting, and has begun to prepare
the piece of mallee ground on which the green will be made. Volunteers have
cleared it and taken levels in readiness for planting later this month. Officials
elected: President, Mr. L. W. Horton; Vice President Mr. W. Henwood,
Secretary Mr. J R. Paxton; Treasurer Mr. L. Bigg; Committee Messers L. Ellis,
C. Toull, I. Frick, F. C. and F. A. Bollenhagen.259
A group of enthusiastic men at Monash are not going to let the grass grow under
their feet. Anxious to have a bowling green of their own, they have set out to

Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.

Berri Community News, 7 Nov 1951.
258 Murray Pioneer, 17 May 1951.
259 Berri Community News, 3 Oct 1951.


establish their own bowling club and greens. On the Monash Oval block of land,
groups of men, determined to have their own summer entertainment in their
own back yard have been working in busy bees for the past three weeks. They
have cleared the area of its mallee and roots, mapped out the playing area and
clubrooms, and ploughed the land. The first grading operations will begin at the
week-end, and the seed will be sown later. Arrangements are in hand for the
watering of the proposed greens which should be ready for play in two years.260

In December 1956 the new Monash Bowling Clubrooms were opened by the
Member for Chaffey, H. W. King. Monash formed a Ladies Bowling Club during
the 1957-58 season.
In 1959 club president Mrs. Hunt presented the following prizes: Club
Championship, Mr. L Bigg; Championship Pair, Mr. L. Bigg, W. Henwood;
Handicap Single, Mr. E. Halliday; Handicap Pair, F. Bollenhagen, W. Wade;
Mixed Rink Competition, F. Lock, Mrs. OMalley, K, Clark, Mrs. Fewster.261
Lighting, 1960
The Monash Bowling Club has two lines of lights in operation, and will have the
3rd line by the opening of the next season.262


Murray Pioneer, 30 Aug 1951.

Berri Community News, 2 Jul 1959.
262 Berri Community News, 7 Jul 1960.



Monash bowlers look for women in 2001.

The Monash Bowling Club is looking to reform its once strong women's side.
Club secretary Peter Blades said this week that in recent years the club had
failed to field a women's team in the Riverland Women's Bowls Association
because of dwindling numbers. Its three remaining members, Gloria Dutton,
Norma Radosevic and Gertrude Sachse, have been playing as reserves for other
teams. However, Mr Blades said the club had recently received inquiries about
the reformation of a Monash women's side and would be holding a public
meeting to gauge interest. He said the Monash Ladies Bowling Club had been
extremely popular since its formation in 1957-58. A number of its players were
picked for State teams. "Mrs F. Lock was the first president, and Mrs P. van der
Woude was secretary," Mr Blades said. "The ladies first club champion was Mrs
G. Furniss, and with Mrs W. Webber, also won the championship pairs.
"Following this Lorna O'Malley (who now plays for Berri) was club champion
14 times in 23 years, from 1958-59 to 1980-81. "The ladies had some very
strong players over the years which resulted in winning many championship
events which may be seen recorded on the championship boards held at various
Riverland Bowls club premises." Mr Blades said the club would need at least 12
women to form its own side and that it was hoped a team could be entered in the
upcoming Riverland women's pennant bowls season. He said people from across
the Riverland were welcome to play in the proposed team. "We want to reform
what was in the past a very strong side," he said. "It's also a way of further
strengthening the competition by increasing the number of teams." He invited all
interested players to a meeting at 7.30pm on Wednesday at the Monash Club.263

Indoor bowls
The Monash sub-branch of the Returned Servicemans Association (R.S.A.)
played social indoor bowls as early as 1939. In October 1946 the Berri District
Returned Servicemans League (R.S.L.) Indoor Bowls Association was formed.
In 1947 the competition consisted of 8 teams, 2 teams each from Berri, Monash,
Glossop and Winkie. In 1950 Monash won the premiership, defeating Winkie,
51 to 47.264

Table Tennis
Moves to form a table tennis association began in June 1928. Throughout the
winter of 1946 Monash played a team in the Berri Table Tennis competition.
The premiership table ranking at the end of the minor round was; Berri Central,
Cobdogla, Toorak, Berri East, Monash and Glossop.265

Womens Basketball
During the late 1940s and the 1950s the Monash Basketball Club played A and
B grade teams in the Upper Murray association. In 1947 players included
Doreen Wagenknecht, Denise Cocks, Melva Dermody, Louisa Fundak,
Margaret Horton, Leonie Maddern, Judith Nicholas, Lorna Lock, Aurial Schulz
and Yvonne Smith.


Murray Pioneer, 20 Jul 2001.

Murray Pioneer, 9 Mar 1950.
265 Murray Pioneer, 5 Sep 1946.


The Monash Basketball Club held its wind-up social for the 1950 season at the
home of Mrs. C. Elleway. A delightful social evening had been arranged and
supper, which had been provided by the girls, was enjoyed. Trophies were
presented to the following: Mrs. Yvonne Elleway and Miss Elizabeth Lobban,
best players for A and B grades respectively. Mrs. Fay Jones and Miss Margaret
Loxton (most improved players).266
Monash Basketball Club, 1959
With the basketball season now under way we are able to get some idea of how
our team will fare. Unfortunately, the first two teams played were much better
than us. We deservedly suffered defeat. However, hope springs eternal and there
are still seven more teams to play. Our young players are showing out very well,
particularly Christine Nieding, and of the older ones, Anne Sabol is outstanding.

In 1954 Monash struggled to form just one team, the club was down to just
seven players, with no reserves, and no coach.
Although still trying, this team has not succeeded in breaking through to the top
four. The defeats at the hands of Loxton and Lyrup were the major factors in
determining its position. Proper coaching and practice would make a big
difference to the lack of team-work and co-operation. Margaret Viney and
Dorothy Galloway are consistently good players, but the defence line is weak.
Pat McCreanor has shown very good form lately and now throws goals fairly
consistently. The win against Moorook did a lot to boost morale. Sue and
Chelida Najar are new comers to the team.267

Mens Basketball
Monashs first mens basketball team was formed in 1948 and played in an 8
team competition.
Club formed, 1954
On Feb. 23rd a meeting was held in the Monash Hall and a Mens Basketball
Association was formed. Mr. J. Henwood was elected president and Mr. J.
Friscic was made patron, J. Fundak is treasurer and J. Grosse, honorary
secretary. It was decided to convert one of the tennis courts into a suitable
playing ground. As it is intended that the game be played at night, the
installation of lights will be an initial expense for the newly formed club.
Enthusiasm is very high and it is hoped to get into full swing this season.268
Mens Basketball, 1954
A team from Monash, the Giants, has been playing regularly at Loxton with
considerable success. Plans are well in hand for the erection of a court at
Monash. The players should improve further with regular practice. A combined


Murray Pioneer, Nov 1950.

Berri Community News, 5 Aug 1954.
268 Berri Community News, 11 Mar 1954.



Monash Meribah team has been selected to play against Loxton in a carnival
on May 15th. 269


Berri Community News, 6 May 1954.



Smartly uniformed Monash team, premiers in B grade competition at loxton last

season. From left: B. Evans, A. Fundak, J. Henwood, J. Fundak, R. Viney, J.
Viney. Berri Community News, 1955?

John Henwood, captain Monash football club.



There was always five acres of saltbush that had never been used for anything at
all. So one day I thought Well Monash needs a seesaw and a slippery slide so I
made them and put them in one corner. They got used so I put in a few more
items and over a period of 15 years or so we finished up with the entire five
acres filled with 180 items which if you spent five minutes on each would take
you eight hours to get through the play ground.
Many years ago if you wanted to know were Monash was you said it was near
Berri, and then it came that if you wanted to know where Berri was, you said it
was near Monash. At one stage a survey was done by the councils and
apparently half the people coming to the Riverland were coming specifically to
visit the Monash playground. 270
Monash Progress Association, 1957
Points under discussion included the decision to put the playground equipment
donated by the Grant Engineering Company on the Recreation Grounds, where,
it was felt, most use would be made of such a generous offer.271
Grant Park, 1958
That Grant Park exists at all is a tribute to Grant Telfer. His vision and vivid
imagination are embodied in a range of equipment with remarkable variation
that encourage a true sense of fun, adventure and challenge. Grant Park is widely
recognised throughout the State as a special place to play, for all ages. It is
conservatively estimated that over 100,000 people visit it each year. Grant Park
also represents a significant symbol of history and culture of which many people
in the region feel a part.272
Very soon the Progress Committee will be calling a busy bee to erect the
proposed fence and a good muster would be appreciated. Every item of
equipment has been generously donated by Mr. Grant Telfer. To see the number
of children each evening playing on the swings should convince the people of
Monash District of the tremendous value of this playground to all concerned.273
He works wonders with junk, 1979
A Riverland man who says he has a serious case of delayed childhood has
built one of Australias biggest and most unusual playgrounds. He is Mr. Grant
Telfer, 47 managing director of Grant Engineering at Monash, who for 15 years
has been designing and building equipment for a 1-hectare park in the small
town of Monash, 10 kilometres north-west of Berri. His playground contraptions
there are about 90 range from a three-tonne figure eight spiral slide to a
four-man roller coaster. The non-commercial venture is maintained by Grant
Engineering workers, and donations by park users cover the cost of waxing the

Grant Telfer, ABC radio, 11 Sep 2006.

Berri Community News, 21 Nov 1957.
272 Grant Park, Monash, Oct 1992. Playground Advisory Unit, Recreation S.A.
273 Berri Community News, 1958?


slides and oiling the gadgets. I set up the playground for my own amusement in
doing the work, and it is incidental that others find amusement here, Mr. Telfer
said yesterday. He said he also wanted his children to experience some of the
delights of my own childhood like the times my father used to take me to
Semaphore to slide down the old wooden lighthouse-type slippery dip, the
wicker basket roller coaster at Foys store in Rundle Street at Christmas and
Id always wanted to ride on a flying fox. One local said yesterday: Hes a
beaut bloke whos doing something worth while for the community and having a
good time while doing it.
Mr. Telfer, whose family lives in a large, modern house in scrub a short distance
from his engineering factory, began making iron-framed sheds when he was 20.
Grants Sheds. manufactured at Monash by a staff of 14 local workers, are
now sold throughout SA. About 10 years ago, Mr. Telfer said, he decided to
stop taking life so seriously. He rides at least 25 kilometres a day on a
specially modified touring bicycle fitted with a stereo tape recorder-radio, a
huge spring seat, gaping saddlebags and three-position handlebars.
Monash locals say his most unusual play inventions have been made from
roadside litter he has collected while riding around the district. It took one man
working full-time three months to complete the figure-eight spiral slide, Mr.
Telfer said. Pressed for information on costs, he would say only that his
company built the slide for about $4000 but it could not be made profitably
for under $12,000. Mr. Telfer said he had counted 300 people in the park but
there had been many more on long-weekends. When its empty it looks like
the Wingfield dump, but it is a different world when there are kids, colour and
noise, he said.274


Murray Pioneer, 3 Apr 1979.



Making ends meet can be childs play, 1983

Flexibility and learning are the key elements in the survival of small business
during troubled economic times. If 99 per cent of your companys turnover
comes from the fabrication of farm sheds and a crippling drought maims the
rural sector, you only have one choice-diversify or die. So when this situation
confronted Grant Engineerings managing director, Mr Grant Telfer, he
modified his manufacturing business to accommodate his hobby and his
favourite charity.
Mr Telfers hobby is the now famous Monash Playground situated in the heart
of SAs Riverland near Berri. With some $200,000 worth of rides, climbs,
slides, dips, flips, and mazes, the playground has become enormously popular
with kids of all ages. Now, after 15 years of fun, the drought and the recession
are, paradoxically, pushing it towards becoming big business.
Orders are coming in from all over Australia for play equipment either
assembled or in kit form as well as for plans and designs. Mr Telfer said
today. He said the free playground is turning out to be an inspired marketing
Grant Engineerings latest completed order was for $50,000 worth of leisure
equipment and designs to the Geelong Regional Commission in Victoria.
According to Mr Telfer, most of the funding for this project came through the
Victorian State Governments work creation scheme and he believes this sort of
public funding will increase substantially boosting his business in coming
Mr Telfers other diversification away from the rural fabrication is into the area
of technical aids for the disabled. I have been involved in this field charitably
for a long time and I became aware prices for conveyances, wheelchairs and
hoists were far too high, so I set about trying to do something about it, he said.
Grant Engineering has started manufacturing hand powered tricycles, electric
wheelchairs and car roof rack hoists commercially.275


The News, July 1983.


Monash may soon echo to noisy pieces, 1985
Squeals of delight, laughter and the happy chatter of children may not be the
only sounds soon at Australias most famous playground at Monash, in the
The playgrounds creator, Mr Grant Telfer, wants to do something different as he
is getting a little bored designing the back-to-front, upside down and inside out
play pieces which have drawn 200,000 kids-at-heart to Monash every year.
As a change, Mr Telfer plans to create noisy play pieces. Not too noisy, mind
you, because, as he explained, people who lived nearby had to put up with
enough noise. The idea is one of hundreds still milling around in the head of the
self-proclaimed gadgeteer who took some of his childhood memories and
created a monster.
It sort of started 20 years ago in the usual way with the normal things a swing
and a slippery dip, Mr Telfer said. But it became obvious that adults were
necessary to bring the children, so we had to make it fun and interesting for
adults, too. From these beginnings a 180-piece adult and child playground was
born. Nine out of 10 people seem to lose their child-like quality, said Mr
Telfer, 53. They would not be seen dead on the corner playground, but here it
was quite a surprise, at first, to see the 75-year-olds getting on the equipment.
In the Monash playground the play pieces are not just any play pieces. Many are
a feat of engineering ingenuity with more than a dash of lateral thinking. I was
imagining what would happen if you cut half off one piece, it turned it around
and added it to another, he said. Using this logic, he designed seesaws that
move down when you expect them to move up, and up when you expect them to
move down. His favourite piece was probably one of the most derivative-the
roller coaster-but he loved it because he could imagine the delight of people
finding it in a playground.
He said that there had been a few injuries at the playground-most to people who
did not know their limitations-and only one insurance claim. He recalled
watching a teenager who had come off one of the pieces the wrong way.
While being taken away in an ambulance the teenager had called to his parents:
It was my fault. I did it. Please let me come back tomorrow. The boy had not
been badly hurt.
Mr Telfer, who was born, bred and buttered in Monash has worked out a fun
way of parting you from your money. At the top of some of his highest play
pieces there are spiral coin collectors which rattle when the coin moves down
into a collecting tin. He remarked jokingly that the coin spiral could be rebuilt to
play Waltzing Matilda. A donation tin that sang patriotic tunes would not seem
out of place in grant Telfers Monash playground.276


The Advertiser, 17 Oct 1985.



It had been going for 25 years highly successfully, but towards the end of that
time the American litigation disease was starting to show its head. Wed had a
certain amount of people suing for very minor injuries and lawyers fees and
settling out of court, it cost us quite it bit and the local council would have been
very pleased to insure the playground because at that stage they owned it. But
their insurance arrangements didnt permit them to insure anything other than
council and they couldnt insure our interest. So it was considered best to close it
before we had a claim that put the Telfer family in the poor house.277
Playground closure a bitter blow, 1992
The decision to close the Monash Playground is a bitter blow to the Riverland,
particularly as it has come just before the peak tourist season.278
Playground campaign should be supported, 1992
In building the playground, Grant Telfer has made an incredible donation to the
Riverland, in terms of cash, energy and initiative. It must be bitterly
disappointing for him to see the playground that has given him so much
pleasure, now causing such pain for both him and the Berri District Council.279
Monash playground, 1994
Mr ANDREW (Chaffey): What progress has the Minister for Recreation, Sport
and Racing made in relation to the re-opening of the Monash Playground and, in
particular, regarding the securing of the required indemnity for the playground's
constructor and its present operator, the District Council of Berri? The Monash
Playground has been the most significant single tourist attraction in the
Riverland over the past 20 years and, in terms of its visitation from interstate,
probably one of the most significant in South Australia. The playground has
been closed for 15 months because of liability insurance problems and, despite
repeated offers to resolve the situation by the previous Government, this did not
eventuate. It is a truly unique attraction with a national reputation, and it is a
great example of local community volunteers doing their bit to add value to the
State's tourist effort. The Chaffey electors are understandably impatient for a
resolution of the matter.
Answer: The Hon. J. K. G. OSWALD: I would like to compliment the
honourable member for his vigorous representation prior to the election and ever
since. The playground at Monash, I believe, has the potential to be one of the
best tourist ventures and tourist attractions in the Riverland. Over recent years it
has been the subject of considerable controversy, mainly regarding issues related
to the safety of the playground equipment. It first came to the attention of my
department when the Playgrounds Unit prepared a report for the Local
Government Association. As most members would be aware, the equipment was
designed and supplied by a local Riverland engineer, Mr Grant Telfer, and the
playground is built on land owned by the Berri council. The equipment is

Grant Telfer, ABC radio, 11 Sep 2006.

Murray Pioneer, 11 Dec 1992.
279 Murray Pioneer, 15 Dec 1992.


extraordinary in that it has been designed for use as much by adults as by young
Some time ago, Mr Telfer's solicitors raised a concern in respect of indemnity.
They put to the Berri council and to the Government that something had to be
done to cover the indemnity; otherwise, the park would remain closed. Since
coming into Government, we have addressed this subject with some urgency and
sought to bring it to resolution. This has been difficult because of varying views
from the various solicitors who represent Mr Telfer and the Berri council. By
way of a progress report for the honourable member, I can advise that an
indemnity agreement has been prepared and discussed with the playground's
designers and builders and their solicitors, the local council and its solicitors and
the Local Government Association. This agreement has been reviewed on many
occasions, and we have now reached a point where the three bodies to which I
have just referred now agree with it.
The indemnity was discussed last Tuesday at a meeting of the Berri council, at
which it was passed. It has now come to Adelaide and is currently with my
department, and I will be taking it to Cabinet on Monday week to seek its
ratification. It is our desire as a matter of Government policy to have the
playground opened as quickly as we can, and we are endeavouring to do that. 280
Government playground move a cop out, 1994
A popular Riverland playground will be dismantled following the State
Governments decision to withdraw a pre-election promise of insurance
Monash playground, 1994
Hon. LYNN ARNOLD: Will the Government stand by the offer of an indemnity
for the creator of the Monash Playground, Mr Grant Telfer, against past and
future claims reported in an article in the Murray Pioneer of 19 November 1993
and, if not, why not?
Answer: The Hon. J. K. G. OSWALD: The Government has provided a grant to
the Berri Council of $150,000 as a contribution towards the cost of replacing
playground equipment at Monash to bring it up to the required safety standards.
The Premier and the Mayor of Berri, Ms Margaret Evans, came to an agreement
on 26 May 1994 that the money would be used to develop the former
playground into an adventure park and picnic area. Unsafe play equipment will
be removed, shade trees planted, lawns established, new safe play equipment
and barbecues installed. The $150,000 grant will help to create not just a
recreational facility for Riverland families but a significant tourist attraction. It
was a great loss for the region when the playground at Monash was forced to
close in December 1992 over the question of liability for injuries. However, the
new agreement provides the best possible alternative. In offering this level of
financial assistance, the Government decided not to provide an indemnity for the


House of Assembly, State Government of South Australia, Hansard, 24 Feb 1994.

The Advertiser, 29 Apr 1994.



playground in light of new evidence that indicated that the playground was
When the initial commitment to providing an indemnity was given in January
1993 it was on the basis of information provided at the time about the accident
record to the playground. Advice at that time suggested that there had been no
injuries resulting in claims for damages. Only two other accidents were
specifically mentioned whereas, in reality, more than one person a week had
received medical treatment arising out of accidents at the playground. Records
from local and metropolitan hospitals show that up to 60 injury cases a year
were reported for the playground, with a death resulting from an accident in
The Government could not responsibly agree to provide an indemnity based on
that new information. To do so would have been to condone the opening of a
playground which obviously did not meet safety standards and to provide blank
cheque insurance coverage at the expense of all taxpayers. Notably, a recent
accident case at a Victorian playground resulted in a claim of $3 million.
The solution reached will allow for the sensible development of the playground
into an adventure park which is safe and will be of great benefit to Monash and
the Riverland. I understand that the Mayor and other representatives of the Berri
District Council have already travelled to Canberra to inspect the type of
adventure park that will be established at Monash. As a result, an architect
specialising in this field has been commissioned to develop design concepts and
then to follow up with design details.282
End of an era, 1994
The Monash Playground became nothing more than a memory last week with
the equipment being dismantled after a 20-month battle to re-open the unique
site. The equipment was pulled down by playground designer and builder Mr
Grant Telfer, of Monash, with only several of the larger pieces of equipment still
remaining that may need to be dismantled.
The playground was first started in the mid 1960s, with the larger pieces of
equipment being developed in the mid 1970s. A spokesman for Grant
Engineering said the equipment would be left in a paddock in an unusable form
and would be left there in the hope that there would be changes to the
current litigation situation enabling the playground to be rebuilt. Berri District
Council chief executive officer Mr Mike Hurley said the council had agreed to
allow Mr Telfer to remove pieces of the equipment for his own use, but had not
been aware that the entire playground would be taken apart within a week. Its
very sad that it has had to go like it has, he said. Its been a very controversial
period for the last two years. He said it had been councils responsibility to
remove the equipment, but Mr Telfer had completed most of the work required.
Weve attempted at all times to re-establish the playground.
The playground closed in November 1992 when Mr Telfer realised he could not
get insurance to cover himself from any claims resulting from accidents at the
playground. The area was fenced in December 1992 and was never re-opened

House of Assembly, State Government of South Australia, Hansard, 13 Oct 1994.


despite Government promises that it would be. It was initially agreed by the
Labour Minister for Recreation and Sport Mr Greg Crafter that the playground
would re-open if certain requirements were met such as fencing and providing
supervision. However, an agreement on the wording of the indemnity to free Mr
Telfer of any responsibility could never be reached between the council and Mr
Telfer. In January 1993 the then Opposition Leader Mr Dean Brown visited the
playground and made a promise to indemnify Mr Telfer and re-open the
playground if he was elected. Following the election, Mr Brown said the
Government would not indemnify Mr Telfer but offered $150,000 towards the
cost of upgrading and re-opening the playground. When it was realised that there
was no way Mr Telfer could be indemnified, the money was re-allocated to
develop an adventure playground that would meet Australian safety standards. I
think its important to have some sort of an adventure playground, Mr Hurley
said. Looking at what we have seen (in other areas), it does draw people to the
area and it does assist people with recreational activities. This will be an
alternative away from the river.283
I take my hat off to the man, 2003
I felt more than a tinge of sadness as I pulled into the car park here and swore
under my breath at what greedy lawyers had done to our way of life. By
explanation let me state that a wonderful man of vision, Grant Telfer, started
Monash playground out of nothing more than scrap metal and the goodness of
his heart in 1965. By 1985 he had filled the park with 180 "challenges" as he
called them. It was around this time I visited with my children. Of all our
holidays this is one placed we always remembered as being evocative of the
good things to be found in the human spirit. 200,000 people annually used to
come here to see the engineer's masterpieces and, you have to trust me here as
they are no longer there, some of them were masterpieces of imagination. It put
the otherwise nondescript and just off the main road town of Monash on the map
but, and even as I write this a tear comes to my eye, it closed in 1992 due to
public liability issues. A curse upon those responsible I say! Eventually, due to
its enormous popularity of what had been, a new park opened; more sedate than
the previous and less adventurous but still free unless you choose to make a
donation, which I have always done. There are plaques acknowledging Telfer's
genius and his legacy lives on in parks throughout Australia and the world as
some of his innovative designs have been copied. I take my hat off to the man.284


Murray Pioneer, 9 Aug 1994.

Ian Smith, www.virtualtourist.com, 2 Nov 2003.


View from tower looking west towards Monash Club, 1992.

View from tower looking south towards School, 1992.




Tony Hersey, Murray Pioneer, 10 Dec 1992.


Advertising brochure, Grant Engineering Company, 1986.




The first Christmas
Miss Elsie E. Formby, under the auspices of the Cheer-up Society, paid a visit to
the Berri Settlement and surrounding area to ascertain what could be done to
bring a little Christmas cheer to the soldiers and the wives and children who
share the discomforts of early settlement with them. Mrs. Seagar had seen
personally the conditions of life at Moorook, and Miss Formby was so
impressed with what she saw, particularly in the Lone Gum area, that she
devoted special attention to this portion of the settlement. Funds were gathered,
and, having secured the necessary goods, the next thing was to transport and
deliver them to recipients. To rail the articles to Morgan was a detail, to convey
them thence to Berri by motor was not difficult, but at Berri the trouble about
transport began. A car conveyed the goods to a spot at Lone Gum and departed
to return later in the day to convey Miss Formby back to Berri. A conveyance
was secured, into which were placed the cases and packages for distribution, and
it was loaded to its utmost capacity. Naturally it did not take long for the
children to find out what was on, and the visitor was soon among highly excited
children and gratified parents. In the joy and laughter of the children and the
appreciative remarks by the fathers and mothers ample reward was found. Major
Minagall, D.S.O., late 10th Battalion, with Mrs. Minagall, dispensed generous
hospitality at lone Gum to the visitor, who was highly gratified with the success
of her mission. Throughout the trip and in the dispensing of the Christmas gifts
Miss Formby had the able assistance of Mr. S. E. Doley, late lieutenant of the
original 10th Battalion, who was at the landing at Gallipoli, and later in France.
Mr. Doley secured a complete list of the returned soldier settlers, and
accompanied Miss Formby on her extensive distribution.285

Returned Services League

In 1915 the Returned Soldiers Association (R.S.A.) was formed in South
Australia. In June 1916 the R.S.A. joined the national Returned and Services
League which became the Returned Sailors and Soldier Imperial League of
Australia (R.S.S.I.L.A). On 14 February 1919 the Berri sub-branch of the
R.S.S.I.L.A. was formed.
There was a fair attendance of prospective members, the largest number coming
from the Lone Gum Camp. The following officers were elected: President, Capt.
Eric Inglis; vice-presidents, Messrs, Darcy Jury and Roy McCreanor; hon.
secretary and treasurer, Mr. Lloyd A. Bigg; committee, Messrs. W. D. Patfull,
Phillip B. Thomas, R. M. Kelly and A. Farley.286
The next year the formation of a local branch at Monash was proposed to
alleviate the difficulty in travelling to Berri. On 29 August 1920 the Lone Gum
sub-branch officially opened in the school room. Elected committee: William
Bill P. Henwood (President), William Tait Strahan (Secretary and Treasurer),


Adelaide Advertiser, 31 December 1919

Murray Pioneer, 21 Feb 1919.



Darcy Jury, Frank Munroe, Phillip B. Thomas, Andrew Johanson, K. Feige,

Lloyd A. Bigga and Roy W. McCreanor.
General Birdwood at Monash.
From our Monash correspondent.
A great crowd of returned soldiers and settlers were present to-day at Monash.
The official visit was timed for 3 p.m. At 2:15 p.m. a surprise was effected by
the early arrival of the General and his party. This proved a great blessing, as it
gave the General a fine opportunity of conversing with the men. "Birdie: at once
won many hearts by his free and easy manner. For three quarters of an hour he
moved amongst the crowd, and in the gential manner characteristic of the
General, made the crowd feel as if they were meeting an old friend.
A body guard of boy scouts under the leadership of Scoutmaster Scaliery were
drawn up on parade and as the General approached they came smartly to
attention. The General conversed for a few moments with the scoutmaster and
expressed admiration for the smart appearance of the scouts, who have only
been in existence as a troop for six weeks.
General Birdwood then passed along the ranks and spoke a few kindly words to
each boy. It was indeed an inspiration to see this splendid old warrior rest his
hand on the shoulder of each young scout.
At 3 p.m. Mr. Partridge, president of the local sub branch of returned soldiers, in
a very fine address welcomed General Birdwood. Mr. Partridge said they were
proud to have the honour of tendering the General a most hearty welcome. Their
only regret was that his stay was of such short duration, but they hoped he would
be enabled to see enough to recognize that the returned men in this district were
making good in peaceful advocations as they did under his leadership, amid
sterner scenes. They were gratified beyond measure that the General should
have made a point of visiting the soldier settlements along the Murray valley and
affording the men an opportunity of again seeing him. "From this spot", the
speaker continued, "you can view land on the north of the main road, in its
virgin state, being cleared and prepared for settlement in the near future. On the
south of the road you can see blocks already allotted, on which soldiers are
settled and in various stages of development. With the aid of friends of the
"diggers" a small display of fresh and dried fruits has been arranged to enable
you to see what the blocks will ultimately produce and enable you to visualize,
as the returned men are doing, the prosperity they will enjoy when the orchards
come into bearing.287
In 1928 the membership rose from 47 to 74.
The branch has also been fortunate in being presented with a fine photograph of
General Sir John Monash, a gift from Sir John himself. The settlement being
named after the commander-in Chief of the Diggers the sub branch feels very
proud to posses a photograph of their great leader.288


Murray Pioneer, 16 Mar 1920

Murray Pioneer, 21 Jan 1928.



In 1950 the Monash R.S.L. abandoned plans to build its own clubrooms due to
dwindling membership. It was thought that the R.A.O.B. lodge provided
adequate accommodation for their meetings. By 1971 the membership had
declined to 15 and the branch was disbanded.

Dec 1915
Jun 1916
Feb 1919
Aug 1920
Nov 1940
Oct 1965

R.S.L. timeline.
Formation of South Australian Returned Soldiers' Association
RSA became Returned Sailors and Soldiers Imperial League of
Australia (RSSILA).
Berri sub-branch formed.
Monash sub-branch formed.
Name changed to the Returned Sailors' Soldiers' and Airmens
Imperial League of Australia (RSSAILA).
Name changed to Returned Services League of Australia (RSL).
Monash branch disbanded.

Settlers club
The proposal to form a Lone Gum and Monash Settlers Club was put forward
on 29 Aug 1920.



The committee of the Social Club met on Wednesday night and moved that the
following suggestions be placed before a public meeting to be held on the Friday
following:That a Social and Recreational Club be formed to be named "The Lone Gum and
Monash Settlers Club."
That fee for Membership be 2/6 for the first year.
That foundation members be those who are enrolled at the public meeting on
Friday, and that new members be proposed at a general meeting and balloted for.
(a) That the Director of Irrigation be written to, and asked to hand over the 11
acres that has been reserved for a sports ground in the township of Monash.
(b) That he be requested, while the concrete gang is in the vicinity, to put-down
a 20,000 gallon tank from which the lawns, etc., may be watered.
That the Governor be asked to come to Monash to officially open the hall,
probably in November.
That General Monash be asked to come and open the sports ground, at a date to
be fixed later and probably to lay the foundation stone of the club house at the
same time.
That this committee, consisting of Messrs. Strahan (president), Munro
(secretary), D. Jury, J. Reid, N. Dyer, A. B. Henwood, A. C. Moodie, having
been elected at a meeting of the Agricultural Bureau, which in their opinion was
not a representative public gathering, and having carried out the preliminary
work for the formation of the club, retires from office, in order that a new
committee may be duly elected at the public meeting on Friday.
The whole movement signifies the beginning of the big offensive at Monash,
and we hope to make our advance in good order, and establish our posts as we
go along. the great objective is the betterment of our social conditions, and we
look for the whole-hearted support of every member of our community.289
The club was officially opened by the South Australian Governor on 11 October


Murray Pioneer, 29 Aug 1920.


It was pointed out that the present hall was opened on the occasion of Sir
Archibald Wiegells visit to the river settlements in 1920 and the responsible
body named the Lone Gum and Monash Settlers Club. At that time the club
served a very useful purpose and undoubtedly did good work. The hall was open
nightly and entertainments and social functions were carried out for the benefit
of settlers of Lone Gum and Monash being in a rough state then, those who were
in camp here preparing the land.
Following on the allotment of all the blocks the necessity of having the club
open every evening was no longer felt and the work of the body consisted then
in attending to matters of general interest to the settlement of Lone Gum and
Monash. True it is that some of the ideas put forward did not meet with general
approval but the motive was to improve. 290

Model parliament
In January 1921 the Settlers Club transformed into a Model Parliament. In the
1920s Model Parliaments were a popular form of debating clubs where topical
issues of the day were discussed. The clubs were modelled on the structure of
the parliament and members were elected to key positions such as Premier,
Speaker and Ministerial positions.
An extraordinary meeting of the Settlers Club was held in the Hall on
Wednesday, January 12, to consider a motion tabled by Mr. Strahan for the
alteration of the constitution. The idea, which was well thrashed out at a meeting
of the R.S.A. held a week previous, is to form the Club into a Model Parliament,
each member of the Club to be a member of Parliament and each Minister will
be elected by the Parliament, and will hold office until such time as he
introduces a bill which fails to pass the House. During the winter months, the
parliament will meet once a fortnight, and some interesting debates on the
question of the day should provide pleasant and instructive evenings.
It is to be hoped that the new settlers at Monash will come forward and take an
interest in the affairs of the settlement. Many of these new men are already
occupying their blocks, and judging by their appearance, and manner, are the
type to make a success of their undertaking, and to prove good and useful
citizens of the area. We heartily welcome them to Monash.291
In Monash the Model Parliament actually operated like a proper Government
and was seen as a way of achieving a democratic means of self determination
for the district.


Murray Pioneer, 20 Feb 1925.

Murray Pioneer, 16 Jan 1921.



After the reports had been received the important question of the alteration of
the Constitution was introduced by Mr. P. Barry. This question was discussed at
length at a previous meeting, but in spite of that matter was again debated
warmly before the motion was carried. The motion was:- "That the management
of the Club be in the hands of a Model Parliament, each member of the Club to
be a Member of the Parliament, The Cabinet to be Elective."
After the motion was carried, the election of the Cabinet took place, the
following gentlemen being the successful candidates:-For Premier, carrying with
it the portfolio of Public Works, Mr. W. P. Henwood; Chief Secretary, Mr. A.
Johanson; Treasurer, Mr D. Jury; Minister of Crown Lands, Mr A. Bottrill;
Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. N. Dyer; Minister of Education, Mr. W. H.
Brown; Attorney General, Mr A. B. Mortimer; Minister of Agriculture, Mr. H.
Beriman; Minister of Irrigation and Navigation, Mr. A. McDonald; Sergeant-atArms, Mr. Paterson; Speaker, Mr. W. Tait Strahan; Governor, Mr. F. Munroe.292
Lone Gum, February 28 [1921]
On Friday February 25, the Lone Gum and Monash Model Parliament was
opened, but owing to the inclemency of the weather only a few members
attended. The Speaker (Mr. W. Tait Strahan) occupied the chair. The Governor
Mr. F. Munroe, delivered the policy speech, after which the Premier (Mr. W.
Henwood) moved that Parliament be adjourned for a month.
The following are points from the Governor's address:
On the Recreation ground the cricket pitch is completed and the football oval
ready to play on, whilst the tennis courts and bowling green will be proceeded
with as time permits. Fencing posts and wire are being prepared by the Irrigation
Department and will be created as soon as they can be procured.
Negotiations are proceeding for the installation of a water supply and telephone
communication with the outside world. We are informed that this latter is almost
The Minister of Education (Mr. J. H. Brown will introduce a Bill providing that
education be free from the Primary School to the University and that all books
and material be free and that the State board live? of charge all country scholars
who wish to avail themselves of these privileges. He impressed upon members
the necessity for constantly urging the need for better school accommodation,
particularly for the teacher. A Bill will also be introduced to provide a fund to
insure the regular attendance of a doctor and dentist.
The Minister of Irrigation (Mr. McDonald) will carefully watch the irrigation
interests of the settlers. the locking of the river must go hand in hand with
irrigation, as without locking all else is abortive?. The opening of a river port at
Goolwa is a necessity, and the whole system of low-lying swamp land
reclamation should be reviewed and carefully weighed as it may be a shortsighted policy to continue reclaiming these lands when the Bigger scheme of

Murray Pioneer, 30 Jan 1921.


high land irrigation and the conserving of all the water between its natural banks
should be of first national importance.
The Murray Amalgamated Wholesale Packing Co-Operative Union must be our
Alma Mater, and the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. H Beriman) will place before
the House a short Bill to compel all members to deal wholly and solely with the
Union. In view of the fact that dried fruits must eventually become a drug upon
the market unless more consumers are foundin other words,
population in our own country or overseas markets (and we prefer the
former)he will bring in an Act to prohibit the use of any and everything of
overseas production that can be produced in our own country and to prohibit the
export the export of our raw materials, such as wool, whet, copper, tin etc. they
shall only leave these shores as manufactured articles.
The Minister's services are at the disposal of the settlers and he will be only too
pleased to advise and instruct any one who is at any time in doubt.
The Minister of Crown Lands (Mr. A. E. A. Bottrill) is ascertaining if it is
possible for all main roads to be handed over to this community for afforestation
purposes. He will introduce a Bill laying a heavy tax on all unimproved land,
abolishing freehold, no lands to be alienated from the Crown, and no alien to
lease or rent land. In the event of the main roads being made available the
Minister of Public Works (Mr. W. Henwood) will advocate the planting of olive
trees on all three-chain roads that can be irrigated, and on roads of lesser
chainage the planting of trees that will be suitable for packing cases, trellis posts,
etc , due care being taken that these are not detrimental to the productivity of the
surrounding soil.
The Minister for Finance (Mr. D. Jury) early in the session will bring in a
measure to abrogate the existing Acts on Banking and Finance. The Act will be
of such a nature as to abolish all private banking and interest.
The Minister for Home Affairs (Mr. N. Dyer) advocates the granting of a Club
licence, and will in the near future introduce a Bill in that interest.
The Attorney General (Mr. Mortimer) will bring in a Bill to rescind all Acts
passed prior to February 25, 1921.
The Minister of Public Works is in favour of linking up with the Morgan railway
system purely as a defence measure, as in view of the Minister of Irrigation's
project for the ensuing of river navigation at all times we cannot recommend the
railway for any other purpose, and only then if the first plank of our financial
policy be carried into effect.
Your Ministers are opposed to the system of trainees, in other words cheap
labour, and consider from a practical experience on their own blocks that it is a
waste of time, and that a man would be far better on his own block, being
instructed when necessary by the Department's officers who are at all times very
willing to do to. They will bring in a Bill to this effect.



Your Ministry is in favour of a dual vote, one House proportional representation.

in view of the fact that education is free and compulsory every person must pass
in political economy to have a vote.
The Sydney Morning Herald observed the Soldiers Experiment:
A remarkable experiment in self-government proceeding now in some of the
soldier settlements on the river Murray in South Australia.293
Not all settlers warmed to the Model Parliament. The Parliament consisted of
entirely of members of the Settlers Club and the Ministers were appointed by
them alone.
Mention was made of the aloof attitude shown by the new settlers of Monash to
the Club Parliament. The matter was discussed in all its aspects. ..some effort is
being made to induce them to join up in the shortest possible time.294
The Model Parliament reverted back to a Settlers Club in September 1922. This
was largely a result of Monash coming under the control of the newly formed
Berri District Council in July 1922.

District Council
It was decided that a petition be signed by all settlers, pointing out that
practically the whole of the settlers are in opposition to being placed under the
Berri Council, and that they consider the Irrigation Department, with its skilled
officers, working in conjunction with the Model Parliament, could deal more
efficiently with the requirements of the settlement. 295
In July 1922 two councillors were elected to represent the Monash - Lone Gum
ward of the newly formed Berri District council.
Two Lone Gum pioneers, Mr. Darcy Jury and Mr. Strahan, have been nominated
for the District Council that is being formed at Berri. This Council should be a
power for good in the settlement, and might certainly open their campaign by remaking some of the bad roads for which Berri has earned a most unenviable
reputation. Many people will look forward to the first annual report of
proceedings before passing a verdict for or against this new movement, and a
wise administration will be required in order to make a good showing when the
time arrives The heart support of every settler is required, and those that hang
back, perhaps because they are over cautious, must remember that this is to a
greater or lesser extent a handicap to that little band of keen men, who are out to
do their best for the good of the whole settlement..296


Sydney Morning Herald, 5 Nov 1921.

Murray Pioneer, 13 May 1921.
295 Murray Pioneer, 30 May 1921.
296 Murray Pioneer, Aug 1920.


Cr. Darcy Jury, 1942
During the discussion on the position of chairman, reference was made to the
long and sterling service rendered to the council by Cr. Darcy Jury, representing
the Monash portion of the district, known as Lone Gum Ward. Cr. Jury was a
member of the first district council of Berri, when the council was first formed
in 1922, and has been a member continuously since that date, except for one
short gap of three months. It was unanimously decided to place on record the
councils appreciation of Cr. Jurys service.297

In 1954 Cr. L. S. Trenaman retired as Lone Gum ward representative on the

council due to ill health. He served a total of thirteen years as Council chairman
from 1935-1937 and 1940-1949.
In 1997 the Berri and Barmera Councils merged. The Monash - Lone Gum ward
boundary was increased to maintain the minimum required number of voters.
Consequently the Monash - Lone Gum ward includes areas of Berri, Glossop
and Winkie.

Councillors representing Lone Gum Monash ward298

William T Strahan
Jul 1922 Jul 1923
Darcy Jury
Jul 1922 Jul 1926
Jul 1929 Jul 1951
Arthur Hunt
Jul 1923 Jul 1925
Jul 1940 Jul 1948
John G. Potts
Jul 1925 Jul 1929
Kurt G. Feige
Jul 1926 Jul 1934
Joe Rowan
Jul 1934 Jul 1940
Leslie S. Trenaman
Jul 1927 July 1954 (Central ward)
1935 1937 chairman
1940 1949 chairman
Alfred B. Mortimer
Jul 1948 Jul 1954
Lloyd A. Bigg
Jul 1951 Jul 1959
Edwin D. Nitschke
Jul 1954 Jul 1958
Johann T. C. Lehmann
Jul 1956 Jul 1959
Robert Nielsen
Jul 1959 ?
Brent A. Golledge
Jul 1969 Jul 1971
Otto Halupka
Jul 1970 Oct 1982
Thomas McGuire
Jul 1971 May 1993
Michael Stivahtaris
May 1987 2000
Josie H. M. Nelsson
May 1993 2000

Progress Association


Murray Pioneer, 9 Jul 1942.

Berri Barmera District Council website, 2005.



Monash Progress Association, 1956.

After several years of inactivity the Progress Association has taken once again
its proper place in the affairs of the Monash district. Under the chairmanship of
CR. L. A. Bigg, the association has interested itself in many projects. These
include a Voluntary Fire Brigade, homes for aborigines, housing Trust homes,
tree planting in township streets, maintenance of roads and many other

Country Womens Association (C.W.A.)

In June 1946 a meeting was held with a view to forming the Monash branch of
the C.W.A. An election of officers took place on 10 July 1946.
Throughout the war years the women folk of Monash have on every occasion
exceeded their set quotas in connection with the red Cross and Comforts Fund
efforts and now that the main calls on their time have been met it is felt that their
association as a means of assisting worthy causes should still be maintained. The
Country Womens Association as a body has attracted the attention of a number
of ladies of the district and, with the object of discussing the formation of a
branch at Monash a meeting has been convened for Wednesday, June 12, when
there will be an opportunity of meeting several of the District officials of the
CWA meeting, 1954
At the evening meeting held on 14th April, there was quite a good attendance
which included four visitors from Berri, Mrs. Lock, president, welcomed all
present and after the business of the meeting was concluded, Mrs. Maddern gave
us a most interesting talk on her recent trip abroad, her subject being shops.
As it was coat hanger competition evening, a dozen really lovely coat hangers
were on display; Mrs. W. Smith, of Monash, being the judge. Mrs. A. Hallam
won the prize for the best one. Floral sprays were presented to Mrs. Maddern
and Mrs. Smith for their help towards a very successful evening. A delightful
supper was served by the hostesses, Mesdames Telfer and Gale. At the next
meeting a waist apron competition will be held on the afternoon of May 12th at
2:30pm. A Singer sewing demonstration is to be given in the Monash Memorial
Hall on Wednesday, 9th June (all day), by four Singer demonstrators from

Girls guides and Brownies

The Monash Brownie pack was formed in August 1930. The Formation Monash
Girl Guides Association took place on 25 Sep 1933 with the following elected
officials; President: Mrs. Harris, Vice president: Mrs. Maddern, Secretary: Mrs.
Heward, Treasurer: Mrs. Hall. On 24 October 1933 Mrs. Smith accepted the
position of guider, the first Company formed in March of 1934 with the official
inauguration in April.


Berri Community News, 1956.

Murray Pioneer, 6 Jun 1946.
301 Berri Community News, 6 May 1954.


The activities of the Monash Girl Guides and Brownies for the year 1934 were
commenced with the enrolment ceremony which took place in the R.S.A. hall.
The District Commissioner (Mrs. Brugeaud) enrolled one small Brownie (Yvette
Maddern) and then, with the aid of the Berri Girl Guides with their colours, the
Monash Guider and Guiders were enrolled. Those enrolled on this occasion,
which marked the commencement of the 1st Monash Company of the Girl
Guides, were Mrs. A. J. Smith (guider), Joyce Harvey, Betty Evans, Betty
Soderberg, Fay King. Then the seven Brownies who were old enough went
through the ceremony and flew up to become members of the Girl Guides.302
Monash Association annual meeting, 1936
Difficulties were experienced in carrying on the Brownie Pack owing to the
small number available after so many had flown up to the Guides during the
year. It was decided to reorganize, and as far as possible amalgamate the two
and so form a stronger Guide company with Mrs. A. J. Smith as Captain and
Mrs. L. H. Maddern and Miss Jean Taylor as Lieutenants. Officers elected for
the ensuing year: President, Mrs. G. Harris; vice-presidents, Mrs. T.
Gainsborough and Mrs. Heward; committee, Mesdames Bollenhagen, Brown,
Fisher, Hallam, McLaren, Soderberg, Whitelaw and Worman.303
Monash Girl Guides, 1953.
A church parade was held at the Monash Methodist Church on Sunday last,
when Mr. E. Orchard conducted the service. Four girls, captain and Lieutenant
attended. Four girls have done the child nurse test, and others are working for
their 2nd class badge and other badges.304
Congratulations are extended to Lena Stratman and Joy Heward who have
earned their Little House badges. This distinction is not easy to gain as six
badges must first be obtained. These are Child Nurse, Hostess, Home-maker,
Cook, Laundress and Needle-woman.305
Girl Guides, 1955.
The annual general meeting was held last Saturday, when Mrs. J. brown was
elected president; Mesdames Frick and Fuss, vice-presidents; Mrs. Telfer,
secretary and treasurer. The committee comprises Mesdames Heward, Ellis,
Wiese, Harding, Hoffmann, Rowan, Bottrill, Webber, Fred and Frank
Bollenhagen. The parents who attended the meeting were very interested in the
demonstration of hike cooking given by the girls. Emily Bottrill, Valerie Ellis,
Rosemary Hoffmann and Rosi Doorman have recently passed their Hostess


Murray Pioneer, 5 Apr 1934.

Murray Pioneer, 23 Jun 1936.
304 Berri Community News, 5 Nov 1953.
305 Berri Community News, 7 Oct 1954.
306 Berri Community News, 7 Jul 1955.



After more than 20 years of activity the Monash Girl Guides became defunct in

Boy Scouts
The Monash Boy Scouts formed in October 1933.
1st Monash Troop, Boy Scouts, 1933
The 1st Monash Troop of Boy Scouts came into official being last week, when
the district commissioner Mr. A. Hallam, chairman of the local executive,
welcomed the district commissioner (Mr. H. S. Balfour Ogilvy). The badges
were presented to the Monash Scouts by the district commissioner. Items of
entertainment were rendered by Mrs. McIvor, Scout Keith Sando, and the
Monash boys. An exhibition of pyramids was given by the 1st Monash Troop,
trainined by Scoutmaster M. Wilson.307
Scouts and Guides
The Boy Scout and Girl Guide movement has made a great stride in the district
this year, every Saturday seeing a muster of children in their various uniforms
and taking a keen interest in their work.308
By 1953 interest had waned and the Scouts Troop was disbanded.
Scouts active again at Monash, 1962
After many years, scouts are once again active at Monash. They were reformed
in February under leadership of Scout Master Bill Lobban. There are ten boys
who are divided into two patrols, Dingoes and Eagles. These are led by patrol
leaders R. Dyer and J. Wright. The troop is working very hard, passing tests and
building their own camp equipment. Earlier in the year the boys made table tops
from old glass given to us by one of the Monash organisations. Last Friday night
the boys were handed a bomb per patrol, and had to sneak in and lay the
bomb on the hall steps, then sneak out again. This will probably explain to the
people of Monash why several of their dogs were upset.309
The Monash Cub Pack was formed in 1957 and revived again in 1962.
First monash Cubs, 1958
A very pleasant evening was held in the Monash Hall on Thursday, May 8th, by
the 1st Monash Cub Pack. Seven new chums were invested by Akela and
received their tenderfoot badges. The boys invested were Desmond Sonntag,
Malcolm Revell, Phillip Jury, Robert Harris, Leslie Cameron, Peter Mutton and
Christopher Wright.310


Adelaide Advertiser, 14 Oct 1933.

Murray Pioneer, Apr 1934.
309 The Berri News, 14 Nov 1962.
310 Berri Community News, 5 Jun 1958.


Cub Pack formed at Monash, 1962
A Cub Pack has been formed at Monash under the leadership of Mr. Stan Wright
of Monash. The Cubs enrolled are K. Neighbour, C. Sonntag, J. Whitfield, D.
Neighbour, T. Lasscrus, A. Hamood and A. Rasheed; tender pad, N. Thiele.311

Red Cross
The Monash Red Cross Circle had subscribed over 1,400 to headquarters
during the war years.312

R.A.O.B. Lodge
Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes, Monash Lodge No. 87.

In 1924 two brothers, Frank and John Vidovic came to Monash to find out about
local conditions. John Vidovic encouraged his two sons to migrate and join him
in Monash. The two elder men returned to Jugoslavia. By 1930 over 100
Jugoslav men, women and children were living in the Lone Gum and Monash
area. The late Mr. And Mrs. Tassy were the first to own a fruit block in Monash.
About twelve families are now living on their own fruit properties in this
Ludovic and Victor Horvat were the first Jugoslav children to attend Monash
School. Both are now following distinguished careers.
During World War II the Yugoslavs worked hard to raise funds for Red Cross
work, and much money was sent overseas. Quite a number of their sons served
with the Australian Fighting Forces. Altogether these newcomers have settled
down well into the community life of the district, and are esteemed as worthy
fruit growers, and their children vie with the rest in school and sports.313
A Pertinent A.D.F.A. Resolution for the Minister
The concern recently expressed in soldier settler circles over an application for a
transfer of a block in the Monash area to a Southern European has been
intensified by Mr. Whitford's statement at Bern.
In a resolution to be transmitted to the Minister, the' River Council of the
A.D.F.A. urges that instead of any such transferences, surrendered blocks should
be divided among adjacent holders, thus increasing their chances of an economic


Berri Community News, Oct? 1962.

Murray Pioneer, 1950
313 Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.
314 Murray Pioneer 15 August 1930



Monash. July 20.
Considerable indignation Is being felt by the continued talk or the transfer of
several blocks in the Monash area to a Southern European, a Jugo-SIav. It now
appears that an application for transfer has definitely been lodged with the
Irrigation Commission. It is reported that one of the Commissioners, on being
approached regarding the matter, stated that he knew nothing of the application
and that his views were definitely opposed to a transfer to a Southern European.
The sub-branches of the R.S.A. at Glossop, Winkle and hera at Monash have
written League Headquarters drawing their attention to the whole matter, and
protesting against-' such transfers. Now the intimation has seen received stating
that the Secretary to the Commission advises that an application has been lodged
(by F. Tassy) and will be considered after a customary notification has been
given in the Government Gazette.
Some time ago a resolution referring to the allotment of land to Southern
Europeans was forwarded' to the League Headquarters for their action, and word
was then received from a responsible officer that although one transfer had been
effected, this would not occur again. Remembering that, it seemed a strange
thing to hear that the names of several blocks open for application or transfer
had been given to Jugo-Slavs.315
Monash. An enjoyable dance, organised by Messrs. John and Tom Friscic
and Mrs. Tassy. was held at the home of Mr. Friscic at Monash last Saturday.
The party was attended by many of the Yugoslavs of the district, and included a
number from Renmark. Kingston, and Moorook. The sum of 7 was raised.
Dinner was served at midnight, the helpers being Mrs. Snopek and Mrs.
Pongraz. Music was supplied by the Yugoslavian Tambourine Band. The room
was tastefully decorated for the occasion by Miss Eva Tassy and Miss Helen
The dance was one of a series being arranged by the Yugoslav members of the
community to assist the work of the Red Cross.316


Murray Pioneer, 1 August 1930

The Mail, 21 September 1940


Yugoslav arrivals in Monash.
Frank & John Vidovic
Steve & Mary Tisler
Stefan Siladi
Steve Kness
Karol Horvat
Franjo Tassy
Stefan Siladi
Stevan Fundak
Ivan Snopek
Vance & Mary Sabol
John Friscic
Tom Friscic
Alojz Matulic
Vinko Luksa
Stjepan Jantosik
Frank Cinc
Karol Kanizay

Mary Warneckes recital tonight, 1953
The Berri District will be proud to honour one of its talented daughters at the
Tivoli theatre tonight, when Miss Mary Warnecke, of Monash, will give a pianoforte recital. For some years now, Miss Warnecke has been studying at the Elder
Conservatorium. It will be interesting to see how her early promise has been
fulfilled. She has chosen a well balanced program for the occasion.317
Monash girl leaves to study music in London, 1964
A Monash girl, who has made her mark in the musical world sailed for London
yesterday where she will continue her pianoforte studies. She is Miss Mary
Warnecke AUA, who has resigned as accompanist with the ABC in Adelaide to
undertake this study. She plans to be away at least a year.
Miss Warnecke, who has been with the ABC for five years, had her first
instruction in music from the Sisters of St. Joseph in Berri. She won scholarships
in both the Intermediate and Leaving examinations at the Glossop High School,
and went on to the Adelaide girls High School. Studying at the Elder
Conservatorium for six years, she received tuition from Arnold Wylde,
Raymond OConnell and Lance Dosser. At the Conservatorium she won the free
scholarship for piano, and a three-year scholarship for cello. She also won a
number of prizes, including the Bach and sonata competitions. She was a finalist
in the State ABC concerto and vocal competitions on three occasions, and on
one of these represented the State in the finals at Sydney the first SA pianist to

Berri Community News, 3 Dec 1953.



do so in many years. In 1955 she played with the Sydney Symphony orchestra
under conductor Sir Bernard Heinze. She also appeared on radio and television
as a soloist for the ABC. 318
Mary Warnecke was a student of the Elder Conservatorium from 1950-1953,
where she studied piano and cello. She was awarded her Diploma in Music in
1954 and went on to teach music and pursue solo performance. She donated
these recordings of her work to the University to mark the 50th anniversary of
her graduation.319
Ruby Hunter
Ruby Hunter is an Australian singer and songwriter. She is a member of the
Ngarrindjeri Aboriginal nationality, and often performs with her partner, Archie
Ruby Hunters journey has been a tough one, but she has found contentment at
last. The scene at the home of Ruby Hunter and Archie Roach could be seen as a
happy ending. Walking around their property at Monash, near Berri in the South
Australian Riverland, the couple are a picture of contentment. To understand
how they arrived at that point, however, one has to travel across challenging
Hunters story begins and ends on the Murray River. She was born near its
banks, left it in tragic circumstances as part of the stolen generation, when she
was four years old, and now lives close to it with her partner Roach and their
family. Roach grew up in Framlingham, Victoria, and is also one of the stolen
generation, but it is Hunters story that forms the basis of their most recent
collaboration. Her life is inexorably linked with the Murray-Darling River
Basin, which plays a significant role in Rubys Story.
The show a collaboration with a 10-piece orchestra and a marked departure
from the couples usual style is an integral part of this years Message Sticks
indigenous arts festival at the Sydney Opera House. Hunter and Roach wrote it
together, and it not only traces her history but also tells the stories personal,
political and cultural that have shaped her life and the environment around the
Murray. It was a process, she says, both harrowing and rewarding. Im at the
point now where it is starting to affect me. I have to say hang on, this is about
me, she says. Im now asking myself questions about my own life, so its a
journey in a way. Its the stories that have meant a lot to me in life. Reflections
on the memories I have of those times.
Hunters journey took its first dramatic turn when she was taken from her
family. She grew up in foster homes and on the streets of Adelaide, and was a
teenage alcoholic. Only after she moved to Melbourne and met Roach did her
life start to take a more positive course. Together and individually, they have
forged music careers that cross musical and cultural boundaries. The couple
have spent the last few months writing material for the Rubys Story project,

Murray Pioneer, Jan 1964

Adelaide university website, Sep 2007.
320 Internet http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruby_Hunter (2006).


which makes its debut at the Sydney Opera House on Friday. We were both
writing about me, which took a bit of getting used to, says Hunter. It turned
out pretty well. We collaborated by talking, then hell go away and write his and
I go away and write mine. She describes Roach as a man of vision. But his
vision of her, or at least one of them, has been kept under wraps. Its a secret.
Hunter says, coyly. One song he has written for Rubys Story is about how the
couple met in Melbourne more than 30 years ago, but Roach is keeping the
lyrics to himself. Of the other material, she says that although the songs are
primarily about her, issues such as the environment and human rights weave
their way through them. If people are looking for political things in the songs, I
guess theyll find them, she says. The calibre of collaboration on the project
underlines the couples status as musicians. Musical director for Rubys Story is
celebrated Melbourne composer Paul Grabowsky, who is joined by the 10-piece
Australian Art Orchestra featuring the likes of saxophonist Sandy Evans and
trumpeter Phil Slater. Grabowsky says that there is a celebratory feel to the work
and a strength in the writing that is not confined to indigenous issues. There
doesnt have to be a self-conscious tilt towards Aboriginality in making these
songs resonant, he says. Ruby just has to get up and sing them for that to
happen. Shes testifying really. Grabowsky spent four days in South Australia
listening to Hunters testimony in order to shape the music around it. I wanted
to use the interesting line-up we have, playing to their strengths and bring Ruby
and Archies story into that context, where the music takes on a dramatic role in
shaping the songs and putting it into a narrative flow, Grabowsky says. There
are influences in the music that are germane to the influences that shaped their
lives, such as country music, the church its all in there. And I bring my own
slant to it, too. There are jazz influences in there and even bits that might be
interpreted as classical as well. Its a challenge, because musically they are very
simple songs and very powerful. They range from nursery rhymes to very
political songs. Im really excited about it. Hunter, more used to performing
just with Roach or in a small band line-up, says she is looking forward to
singing in this new, larger company. We come from different areas of music so
we have a lot of discovering to do, she says. Most of all, however, she would
like the public to learn something from the experience, whether it is about her
life or the culture that surrounds it. Id like people to be mesmerised by it, she
says. To listen to the lyrics. They are very important. They are the story. 321
Archie Roach
Archie Roach (born 1956, Mooroopna, Victoria) is an Australian musician. A
singer, songwriter and guitarist, he survived a turbulent upbringing to develop
into a powerful voice for Indigenous Australia, a storyteller in the tradition of
his ancestors, and a nationally popular and respected artist.
In his own words, "I was born in Mooroopna, way there by the river bend... ".
Mooroopna is an aboriginal word referring to a bend in the Goulburn river, near
Warrambool in southwest Victoria.
When still a very young child, Roach and his sisters, along with many other
young people of the 'stolen generation' were forcibly removed from their family
by Australian government agencies, and placed in an orphanage. They were


The Australian, 1 Jun 2004.



eventually fostered by a family of Scottish immigrants in Melbourne. The

daughter of this family played keyboards and guitar in a local Pentecostal
church, and taught Roach the basics of both instruments. He was further inspired
by his foster-father's record collection - Billie Holiday, the Ink Spots, the
Drifters, Nat King Cole and old Scottish ballads.
As a young man, Archie received a letter from an older sister, describing to him
the events of their young childhood. Angry and hurt, Roach left his foster home
carrying only a guitar. Pennyless, he travelled to Sydney and Adelaide, and
spent time living on the streets, attempting to make sense of his upbringing and
locate his natural family. He went through periods of alcoholism and despair,
but also began to produce music. During this time he met his lifelong partner,
and musical soul-mate, Ruby Hunter. They started a family.
In the late 1980s Hunter and Roach formed a band, the Altogethers, with several
other indigenous Australians, and moved to Melbourne. Here, he was overheard
by a band-mate of songwriter Paul Kelly, who persuaded Kelly to give Roach an
opening slot for some of his concerts.
In 1990, with the encouragement of Kelly, Archie recorded his debut solo album
- Charcoal Lane. This album included the song Took the Children Away, a
moving indictment of the treatment of indigenous children of Archie's
generation, and a song which stuck a chord not only among the wider Aboriginal
community, but also nationally. The song was awarded two ARIA Awards, as
well as an international Human Rights Achievement Award, the first time this
had been awarded to a songwriter because of a song. The album it came from
featured in Rolling Stone magazines Top 100 Albums for 1992.
Roach has recorded three further albums, and toured around the globe,
headlining and opening shows for Joan Armatrading, Bob Dylan, Billy Bragg,
Tracy Chapman, Suzanne Vega, and Patti Smith. He has worked on soundtracks
for several films, including Rolf de Heer's 'The Tracker.'
Archie Roach and Ruby Hunter currently live on a homestead [at Monash] close
to Berri, South Australia with their children. Their home has become something
of a refuge for troubled Aboriginal youngsters, now dealing with some of the
problems faced by the couple themselves.322


Internet http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archie_Roach (2006)



Monash Girl Guides, 1936. Back row: Eileen OCallaghan, Avilda Johanson,
Diana Bigg, Barbara Bollenhagen, Heather Whitelaw. Front row: Margaret
Nielsen, Gwenda Harding. Grant Telfer collection.

First Berri District Council, 1922. Lone Gum Councillors Darcy Jury and William
T. Strahan are in back row 4th & 5th from left. Berri Library collection.



The main channels in the Lone Gum area where complete in 1912, whereas the
channelling in Glossop and Winkie areas was done from 1911-1913. As the
Berri Pumping Station was to supply all these districts, they were, in essence,
an extension of the original Berri Irrigation Area.
Monash marked the furtherest extent of the Berri Irrigation Area north-west of
the Berri pumping station. The pumps raised water to the highest channel, 120
feet (37 metres) above the river level, which then gravity fed the surrounding
districts. Lower lying areas were fed by 40, 70 and 90 foot channels.
Down channels, 1914.
When the Lone Gum area had been cleared in 1914, the next step was the
construction of the down channels. This work called for a large body of men,
who were chiefly accommodated at a camp situated on the dry land above Block
301, and east and west of it.323
Water Troubles, 1919
Owing, no doubt to other work being considered of greater importance than the
excavation and concreting of tanks, the water supply at present is far from
satisfactory. Usually a drop is sent along each week and we have to hold up
some of this, by placing bags of earth across the channel, until the next lot
comes along. Soon, I understand, the Irrigation Department will begin
reconstructing the main channel which supplies Lone Gum and unless our tanks
are down and filled before this work begins, what we are going to do for water
during the winter is one of the mysteries yet to be solved. Besides domestic
requirements there are several horses and a few head of cattle that need water,
and it if the Irrigation Departments intention that the same state of things
continues that has been in existence since the last irrigation continues, the
outlook is not a pleasant one.324
Enlarging main channel, 1919
The work of enlarging the main channel from Berimans corner to Lawrence
Potts block is nearing completion. This work is being done in excellent fashion,
and reflects credit on the men who are laying on. This channel will carry twice
the quantity of water that the old channel did, and should overcome the
difficulty of the shortage of water, that was a cause of anxiety to many settlers at
this end. During last irrigation it was also necessary to enlarge this piece of
channel, in order to ensure a supply of water being carried across the Morgan
road to the new blocks. At the same time it will require a larger channel still to
provide for all these blocks when they are fully planted, and it is to be hoped that


Berri Community News, 1962?

Murray Pioneer, 31 Mar 1919


the Irrigation Department will be fully alive to its responsibility in this respect,
and make provision early in order to avoid disaster.325
Monash channels, 1919
The contractors are getting a hustle on all right in the new section of the
settlement north of the Morgan road, and the gigantic cement pipes and the
channels in course of construction lead the visitor to suppose that it wont be very
long before the newly cleared land is supplied with water. But the lining of the
channels and ditches is a matter that takes time and costs money. Wether it is
worth it in all classes of mallee land has yet to be proved, but it certainly saves
water in transit. In land liable to seepage it postpones the day of drainage, but it
will have no effect in saline land. And I am rather disposed to think that a good
deal of the land now being prepared for settlement in the Berri area will be
found subject to salt rather than seepage. A subsoil survey of every irrigation
area should be prepared before its allotment. But for any acts of omission of this
nature government parsimony, rather than Irrigation Department, is probably to
blame. 326
Slow watering, 1926.
An irrigation is now in progress but headway with the watering is slow. Monash
is at the extreme end of the main Berri channel and settlers state tat there is no
continuity of supply. The flow in the channels is hardly ever the same two days
running. The matter is one which they state, requires attention.327
Water rates, 1924
Several members, having recently received their accounts for water rates could
not miss the item relating to 5 per cent. interest being charged if rates not paid
by a certain date. The date of payment falls due before harvest is completed, so
that for the soldier settler who takes over the block with no capital at all, it is an
impossibility for him to pay-and yet, realizing this, the Department notify their
intention to charge 5 per cent. Interest. This was considered very unfair, and a
resolution asking that the amount become due on June 30 instead of 31st march
was carried unanimously.328

Water rates covered the cost of five general irrigations per year. In times of
exceptionally dry or hot weather optional specials could be ordered at
additional cost. A 24 acre block could take three days and 3 nights to irrigate.
Irrigations during the harvest season would impose significant around the clock
work load on the blocker.
Berri Irrigation Area 1927
The history of Berri dates back for a period of 16 years, when Mr. W. Wade
made arrangements with the Government of that time, to take over its scrubland
for the purpose of an irrigation settlement. Prior to that time the site was part of

Murray Pioneer, 11 Jul 1919

Murray Pioneer, 28 Nov 1919
327 Murray Pioneer, Jan 1926.
328 Murray Pioneer, 9 Feb 1924.



the Cobdogla and Calperum sheep stations, which were resumed as the leases
expired. The District Council of Berri was formed in August, 1922, before
which the area was administered by the Irrigation Department. At the
termination of the war, land was opened up by .the Government for the
settlement of returned soldiers in this area at Lone Gum, Monash, Winkie,
Glossop, and Berri, in each of which now thriving settlements vines and fruit
trees are in full bearing. This season crops everywhere in the district are good,
both for dried fruit and for distillery products, with the exception of Gordos and
Doradillos. At the present time the total area, of irrigable land at Berri .under
cultivation amounts to 6,897 acres, made up of vineyards 5270 acres, orchards
635,. citrus fruits 630, and lucerne 362 acres. The varieties of fruits planted and
respective areas comprise sultanas 2,029 acres, currants 1,037, Gordos 747,
Malagas 79. Doradillos 1,268. other varieties of grapes 108, apricots 262,
peaches 133, nectarines 41, pears 81, prunes and plums 28. figs, 29, mixed fruits
54, oranges and lemons 629, lucerne 362, and hay 1,483, the total cultivated area
being 8,370 acres. The pumping plant serving the Bern irrigation, area consists
of four large pumps Nos. 4 and 5 comprised of triple expansion high-speed
engines. driving centrifugal pumps of 500,000 and 750,000 gallons per hour
capacity respectively, and Nos. 2 and 3 gas engines with a total capacity each of
500,000 gallons, per hour.: The. Murray water is pumped into a channel 90 ft.
high, and is further lifted to 120 ft. for a portion of the area, and then .gravitated
to the fruit blocks. The concrete main channelling in the area comprises in all 61
miles, the water from here being distributed to the settlers' concrete channels, of
which there are 187 miles. Four general irrigations are given per annum to
settlers' blocks, and five to the blocks on the flat area close to the town. The
average district rainfall per annum is nearly 12 in., useful enough in outer wheat
areas, but insufficient without irrigation for intense culture. The big pumping
station situated on the river bank uses approximately 8,000 tons of firewood per
annum. The town reticulation and domestic water supply is provided by the
Irrigation: Commission from the Murray, the .water being pumped into two huge
storage tanks of 50,000 and 100,000 gallons capacity respectively.329

The [1931] third general irrigation is now well on its way after two delays
earlier in the week though a break in the channel and a car taking a header into
the main channel.330
Now is the time to check over your irrigation gear (hoes, shovels, outlets, lights,
boots, chewing gum, tobacco, etc). Water on the road is 1 at least, if noticed.
Council could sue for damage to the road as well, so be careful.331


The Register, 15 March 1927.

Murray Pioneer, 18 Jan 1931.
331 Murray Pioneer, 3 Oct 1951.


Proposed irrigation program 1939/40 season.
90 and 120 channel
First general
First Special
Second general
Third general
Fourth general
Fifth general
To be announced.
Second general is optional. 332
Monash potential irrigation increased, 1962
The fulfilment of the hopes of fruit growers at Monash was brought a stage
closer this week when a newly enlarged delivery pipe into the Monash channel
was tested for the first time. When all planned plantings have been made in
accordance with approvals, the area under irrigation at Monash will be increased
by 126 acres.333

Channelmen controlled the allocation of water during the irrigation. Variously
known as channel riders, watermen, watermaster or water joeys, they were the
"water police". Their role was to co-ordinate the scheduled irrigation times with
the water supply from the pumping station at Berri.
The sudden downpour during the weekend had its effect on the irrigation
channels, and but for the prompt action of the authorities in stopping the pumps,
a great amount of damage must have been done by burst channels. As it was, the
local [Monash] watermaster and his staff had a hard task, the roads being
impassable, and their work of clearing the channels of bulks and obstructions
being considerably hampered on this account.334
I have unbounded admiration for the channelman. His lot is an unenviable one;
he is at everybodys beck and call and he is the target of everybodys abuse.
Wisely has he learnt with suspicion the friendly smile or the cheery word of the
grower, who may be using these agents in a sinister attempt to divert the unwary
giver of water from the narrow path of virtue and impartiality into the wider
fields of preference. 335
During World War II Ern Harding, who lived in Monash, was watermaster in
Lone Gum and Berri. Ted Wuttke, who lived at Tooravale was water master at
Monash.336 Norman Dyer retired as watermaster in Feb 1946, leaving six
permanent watermasters serving the Berri Irrigation Area.337


Letter from Irrigation advisory board, 1939, State Library of South Australia.
The Berri News, 13 Jun 1962.
334 Adelaide Advertiser, 12 Dec 1930.
335 Murray Pioneer, 25 Jan 1918.
336 Grant Telfer collection.
337 Murray Pioneer, 21 Feb 1946.



Great snakes
Last week channel rider, Mr. C. Baldock, of Monash, discovered four snakes at
once in the siphon on the old Morgan road. He sought help from Mr. F. A. M.
Bollenhagen, and killed the tenants with shovels and hoes. We have been
informed that Franks presence was required more as a witness than as a killer,
in case no one should believe such an unattested story.338
Lands Department Irrigation Branch channelmen
Clem W Baldock
1951 - c1976
Norman Dyer
- Feb 1946
Ern Harding
1940s - c1953
Ted Wuttke
Frank Cinc

The open channels and underground tanks were an ever present risk to
children throughout the irrigated areas until they were replaced by underground
pipes in the 1980s.
Boy 3 years drowned in underground tank.
Monash residents tragic bereavement.
A gloom has been cast over this settlement by the death of Donald Thornton
Ellis, aged 3 years, the only child of Mr. And Mrs, L. W. Ellis of Monash,
from drowning in a neighbours under-ground tank on Monday afternoon. The
little chap who had been sent to get milk from the house next door, apparently
went to the tank where he had often played with his cousin, and must have fallen
in. After he had been missing for some time his father went in search of him,
and tracing the footsteps, found the little body in the water. A neighbour with
nursing experience was quickly summoned, and Dr. Dorsch called, but although
every effort was made to restore life, it was of no avail. Sergeant Merritt and M.
C. Schwerdt of Berri, who made investigations found a little toy boat floating on
the water. Donald was a particularly bright little fellow and all feel his loss in
such tragic circumstances.339
At a meeting of the Berri District Council in 1946 the following report was made:
Cr. Brown reported that the Monash seepage tank was being used as a bathing
pool, and asked that steps be taken to have this tank made safer. It was also
decided that the Department of Lands be urged to have the Monash town tank
adequately fenced or covered. It was resolved that the head teacher at the
Monash School be asked to warn the children against swimming in the seepage


Berri Community News 7 Nov 1951.

Murray Pioneer, 22 Jun 1937.
340 Murray Pioneer, 26 Sep 1946.


Little boy drowned at Monash
in underground tank on property [1947].
Dennis McLean, aged 3 years, only son of Mr. and Mrs. F. H. McLean was
drowned in an underground tank in close proximity to his home at Monash on
Thursday afternoon. While his mother was engaged in household duties the lad
was playing near the house. Evidently curious to watch the fish in the tank, he
wandered over and must have tumbled in. An employee going to the tank to
obtain water for the tractor took the little fellow from the tank and called the aid
of Mrs. Fisher and Mr. Vern Hallam, who applied artificial respiration and
immediately called the doctor. Both Dr. D. T. M. Hayes and Dr. G. A. McIntosh
responded to the call and continued working on the boy, also applying injections
but to no avail.341

The sandy soils of the Monash region provided good natural drainage however
the introduction of wide scale irrigation caused the water table to rise. This
caused seepage and salinity problems in blocks, particularly in low lying areas.
Seepage, 1925
Seepage troubles have already developed in parts of the Berri area, and the
permanent Commission is endeavouring to cope with the necessary drainage
problems to meet the salt and seepage difficulties as they arise. Drainage, though
more or less costly, is generally a simple operation provided a satisfactory outlet
can be found for the surplus water. The general, and in most cases the only
feasible, practice has been to lead the drainage into shafts sunk to reach previous
strata, and this as a rule has proved reasonably effective in the Berri area. The
Irrigation Act of 1922 gives the Commission full powers to deal with the
drainage question, and the matter of a proper distribution of the cost and extent
to which the settlers can meet the expense of drainage added to their other debits
is one for consideration of the permanent Commission.342
Tree-Planting Scheme, 1938
Mr. G. Harris, speaking for the Monash settlers, said that 20 blocks in the area
were slightly affected by seepage and the effect was steadily spreading as the
water table was now only three feet below the surface in many parts. A treeplanting scheme had been tried in the lowest part of the basin, but few believed
that the trees could absorb enough water to be of much use. It must be
remembered when considering the allocation of the costs of the drainage scheme
that the settlers would have to construct internal drains at a cost of 4 to 5 an
Seepage, 1939
It is felt by the board that growers generally have a proper appreciation of the
need to continue in their efforts to prevent the over-watering of their land, which
leads to seepage and attendant problems, but it is considered advisable to again

Murray Pioneer, ? Jan 1947.

Irrigation Royal Commission, Oct 1925.
343 Adelaide Advertiser, 2 Jun 1938.



point out that the saving of one acre inch of water in the irrigation of this
settlement would represent 171,000,000 gallons, which would not only have an
influence on the ever-increasing drainage problems, but would also be reflected
in a saving in the cost of supply.344
Drainage plans, 1943
[Berri District Council is] planning to supply electricity to the Engineering and
Water Supply Department for the Comprehensive Draining Scheme. The biggest
pumping station will be at Monash where 90 H.P. will be required to get rid of
the seepage water at this point.345
The first electric pump was connected in May 1944, making it possible to collect
the seepage water in drains and pump it back to the river. Drainage tanks and
pumping stations were constructed at the lowest points at Monash North, Lone
Gum, South Lone Gum and Toorak.
..the first pump of the Berri Comprehensive Drainage Scheme was connected to
the electricity mains of the Berri District Council. The present plans for the
drainage scheme call for the provision of 17 automatically controlled electric
pumping stations in various low-lying parts of the district from Monash to the
bottom end of Winkie.346
The Monash North pumping station was damaged by fire in January 1948. An
electrical fault destroyed all three Pomona pumps, valued at over 1,000.

In 1981 the concrete channels were replaced by underground pipelines with
individually metered pumps at each property. The familiar underground tanks
and bridges over the channels disappeared.
Blocks of land not previously irrigated were now able to be planted up as
vineyards. Some of these blocks were on the high side of the old channels while
others were dry blocks and too remote from the channels.


Letter from Irrigation advisory board, 1939, State Library of South Australia.
Council letter, 24 Nov 1943.
346 Murray Pioneer 11 May 1944.



Construction of a main water channel using lime concrete and limestone rubble,
Monash 1920. State Library of South Australia.

Construction of a main channel - R. McCreanor's dry block, Monash 1920. State

Library of South Australia.

Newly completed main irrigation channel, Monash 1920. State Library of South



Ern Harding's water master record book for 14th Nov 1941 showing east Lone
Gum and Berri blocks irrigated by a channel 120 feet above the river level.
Grant Telfer collection.

Main irrigation channel, Distillery road looking east, c1970's. This channel was
90 foot above river level. Houses are on the high ground to the right, fruit blocks
on the left. Photo by Dorothy Sando.



A typical access bridge at section 617, March 1981. River Reflections, Berri
Jubilee Historical Committee.

Original lime mortar irrigation channel on block 289, owned by Mr W J Harris,

1981. River Reflections, Berri Jubilee Historical Committee.



Monash North drainage pumping station, 24 Feb 2005.

Monash North drainage pumping station,

24 Feb 2005.

Murray Pioneer, 13 Mar 1925.



The fruit growers of Monash quickly realised their fortunes were somewhat
dependent on factors out of their control, the vagaries of market prices and the

Well - we worked our blocks and saw the high prices for fruit the older places
were getting and looked forward to a real good time. Alas our first real crop
was 1924 and coincided with a slump in Europe and we got very little. Still
after that Monash and other fruit growing areas had some good times until the
fierce frost rather freeze of September 1927 which just wiped the currants,
sultanas, gordos etc. out, and only left a few later wine grapes. So 1928 was a
washout and we all had to wait for the good crop we thought might follow.347
Monashs Severe Loss, 1936
Although not as serious as 1927, the frosts of this last week will prove a definite
set-back to growers on this district who are still carrying part of the burden of
the former visitation.
On two occasions, September 4 and 21, quite a large amount of damage was
done, but nothing compared with those experienced on the morning of the 24th
and 25th, when the minimum temperatures recorded were 26 to 24.9 [3.3 to
3.9 Celsius] respectively.
Some growers have been more fortunate than others, with losses less than 50 per
cent, but there are others with far greater losses. Possibly those most seriously
affected in Monash are Messrs K. B. Hocking, A. B. Mortimer, S. R. Price, G.
Harris, A. J. Smith and A. S. Lock although many in the vicinity have suffered
almost as bad. On Mr. Hockings block practically the whole of the acreage has
been burnt right off, including even the doradillos, the same thing applying to
Mr. Prices holding.348
Financial assistance was available to growers affected by frosts. Many growers
had difficulty paying off frost relief loans made during 1936 and in 1939 a
deputation to the State Government obtained time extensions for remaining
Dear Sir, with reference to the advances made under the frost relief act, 1927, I
have to advise that, after allowing for the remittance received since the first July
last, the arrears amount to 44/14/5. Please arrange to forward a cheque for this
amount immediately.349


Reginald Telfer memoirs, unpublished.

Murray Pioneer, 29 Sep 1936.
349 Letter to Arthur Wright from State Bank of South Australia, 28 Sep 1939, held by State
Library of South Australia.



Lone Gum and Monash settlers are this year harvesting their first crops of
apricots. The drying conditions have been ideal and a splendid quality of fruit is
being turned out. A few strange and improvised sulphur boxes have been seen
(one in which only two small trays were used) but this is not the rule as the
majority have taken note of methods adopted by older settlers, picked out what
to them was the best idea and gone ahead.350

Mr. L. A. Bigg of Lone Gum is a firm believer in the value of the Lucerne patch
to the blocker. He has two acres under Lucerne and gets all the feed he wants
from it for three horses and a cow, having to buy chaff for his horses only in the
carting season when they are doing heavy road work.351

Agricultural Bureau
The Lone Gum Agricultural Bureau ,1953
On August 14, 1920, approval was given for the formation of a branch of the
bureau at lone Gum. The opening meeting took place on May 12 of the same
year. Thirty-four members were enrolled, with Mr. Darcy Jury as president, and
P. B. Thomas as secretary. On 11th September, 1922, it was decided to rename
the branch The Lone Gum and Monash Branch.
The Branch functioned until 1937, when A. Johanson was president and L. W.
Ellis was secretary. Others who held office were Mr. W. M. Nicholas as
president, and Mr. L. Maddern as secretary. At that period the membership of
this branch was the highest in the state. Today [1953] those who are interested in
Bureau matters have joined the Berri Branch. Of the 34 original members there
are still ten living in the district.352

Riverland Vine Improvement

The Riverland Vine Improvement Committee is the largest supplier of new vine
cuttings in the region. Based at Monash, the Riverland Vine Improvement
Committee is a not-for-profit organisation which employs up to 100 people
throughout the year. [David Nitschke has been] the Vine Improvement manager
for the past 20 years. Sales reached a peak in the late 1990s with upwards of
seven million cuttings per year. Cutting sales are not specifically to the
Riverland, they go to all states in Australia except Western Australia, which has
some quarantine restrictions.353


Murray Pioneer, 16 Jan 1925.

Murray Pioneer, 13 Feb 1925.
352 Berri : Hub of the Upper Murray, 1953.
353 Murray Pioneer, 10 Nov 2006.


Wineries & fruit processors

Wineries and fruit processors

Wilfred John Harris
[In the 1987 Queens Birthday honours Wilfred John Harris was awarded
Member of the Order of Australia] for service to primary industry, particularly
in the field of oenology. Director, Murray River Wholesale Co-op Ltd. since
1971. Chairman 1982-86; Renmano Wines Pty. Ltd., Berri Estates Pty. Ltd., and
Consolidated Co-op Wineries Ltd. Chairman, Berri Co-op Winery and Distillery
Ltd. 1970-82, Director 1966-86. Since 1970 has held executive positions with
State and National Wine and Brandy organisations, including President, Wine
and Brandy Co-op Producers' Association of Australia, 1981-83. Committee
member 1974-86 of the South Australia Fruit Growing District Arbitration

In 1968 Vindana Winery at Monash commenced operations with 40 tonnes of
grapes crushed.
The Vindana story is a typical 'from failure to perseverance and eventual
success' story. In 1965 the now managing director of this company, Dennis
Morgen, could not sell his grapes picked from 24 hectares of his vineyards at
Monash. So he decided to crush his own grapes and he built a winery.
Operations commenced there in 1968 and the first vintage was 40 tonnes. Today
this winery is one of the largest privately-owned wineries in Australia.
Dennis Morgen's parents were among the original settlers in the Barossa Valley
and in fact he worked on the family property at Rowland Flat before trying his
hand at farming. After six years he decided to try his hand at grape growing and
purchased the vineyards at Monash. Vine plantings include Shiraz, Cabernet
Sauvignon, and Riesling.
Vintage crushes now exceed 8000 tonnes and about 7 million litres of wine are
made annually. Fermentation takes place under controlled refrigeration,
followed by maturation in French oak hogsheads. the winery has two large
bottling lines and these are capable of filling 72,000 bottles per day!
One of the unusual lines is American Pop Wine. It is a flavoured sparkling wine
in orange, passion, and cola and it has fourteen per cent proof spirit. This wine
sells well with the younger generation. About ten per cent of the Vindana
vintage is sold at cellar door while the remainder is distributed to all States. In
fact the winery has its own fleet of trucks operating to Adelaide, Sydney,
Geelong, and Wagga Wagga.
Dennis is capably assisted by his wife Beryl. A friend, Jack Graves, has assisted
with technical operations in the past but now experienced wine-maker Gordon
Cook has been appointed as technical manager. Gordon started winemaking at
Clarevale Wines in 1962, and has since worked for Hungerford Hill at Pokolbin,


Order of Australia Association, South Australian Branch website Apr 2008.



International Cellars, and the Chteau Reynella Winery. Young Monash

winemaker Tony Pech assists with production. Dennis Morgen hopes that one of
his four daughters will take an interest in some aspect of the company in the near
In 1979 a wine guide described Vindana as follows.
This winery is a family affair. It was founded by Dennis Morgen and his wife
Beryl in 1964 and has just grown and grown. It has grown to the point where the
twin daughters, Susan and Jane, both in their 20s, now administer the business,
leaving the parents to get on with the business of winemaking. The 1964 venture
of grape growing led to the founding of the winery in 1969, with a first crushing
of 40 tonnes. Now the company crushes more than 12000 tonnes annually.
The Vindana people are quite frank about themselves. They say they go for the
middle of the road wine market. They do not concentrate on premium wines
under their own label, instead they go for average drinking wines for average
drinking people. They say they make lighter styles in dry reds and also go for
any number of sparkling and carbonated wines, plus the moderate fortifieds. At
the time of writing Vindana had a sale of flagon red and white wines at $1.20 for
the 2.25 litre bottle.
However the company makes some excellent low cost dry whites, which would
sell for four times the price in the astern states. These include a straight Rhine
riesling and a slightly sweeter moselle.
The tastings and sales rooms of Vindana are in keeping with most South
Australian wineries low key and extremely pleasant.
Although a little off the beaten track it is well worth visiting if you are looking
for immediate drinking value, but not a place to buy wine which you might feel
like keeping for ten years or more.356
In August 1980 financial difficulties forced Vindana into receivership with debts
of $1.5 million. The winery was bought by Normans Wines and produced wine
under the Lone Gum label. The collapse of Normans Wines led to the sale of
the winery to Tandou Limited in November 2001.
Feb 2007

Wein Valley Estates.
Normans Lone Gum Winery.
Tandou Wines (subsidiary of Tandou Ltd.)
Purchased by India based Champagne Indage.

The Lone Gum label is now owned and produced by Xanadu Wines, Margaret
River, Western Australia.

Wines and Wineries of South Australia by Mike Potter, 1978

Wine guide, 1979.


Wineries & fruit processors

Omersown Wines
In 2000 Omer Najar established his a small winery at Monash, known as
Omersown Wines.
Omer was raised with soil under his toes and grapes in his mouth. A selfeffacing individual, Omer's passion to producing beautiful big wines have
been duly recognised with his winning Gold in his first ever show. Wine as an
art-form best describes this Boutique Wine-Makers approach and processes,
basket pressing, hand plunging and nurturing his limited vintages to ensure
quality and consistency year after year, because for Omer it is a way of life.357

Rivers Wines
In 2002 Rivers Wines opened a winery at lot 980, corner of Sturt Highway and
Harding road, Monash. In 2004 a planning application was made to the District
The applicants are proposing to undertake an extensive redevelopment of this
site that is occupied by Rivers Wines. The redevelopment is to occur over five
stages and includes additional tank farms, new crushing facilities, workshops,
and refrigeration facilities and a new administration and cellar door sales
building. Provisional Development Plan consent is only being sought for stage
one of this redevelopment with the works proposed being additional tanks,
crushing pits workshops and a refrigeration facility. Following discussions with
the applicant the nature of stage one is to change. The site currently has a license
from the EPA to crush 10,000 tonnes per year. They are seeking to increase this
crush over the term of the redevelopment to 20,000 tonnes.358
ACW in $24 million takeover, 2006
Monash bulk wine company Australian Commercial Wines (ACW) may soon be
taken over by Adelaide-based winery Cockatoo Ridge for up to $24 million.
Cockatoo Ridge is seeking to purchase ACW with $12 million of new shares
and up to another $12 million of extra shares if certain earnings targets are
reached. ACW director Stuart Richardson said the acquisition would mean
increased security at a local level. "This is significant because Cockatoo Ridge is
a large capitalised group, which means substantially more capital," he said.
"That is good news for the growth plans we have and therefore good for growers
locally and local employment at the winery." The initial placement of $12
million of new Cockatoo Ridge shares will be used to reduce ACW debt. "The
wine industry as a whole has got debt against asset value that probably doesn't
support the debt," Mr Richardson said. "For example, there has been massive
deterioration in vineyard values, and the debt level the wine industry is running
is generally too high. "So raising fresh capital for any group is very positive."
The new shares for the takeover will be offered at a price of 14 cents, with
Cockatoo Ridge shares currently sitting at 20.5 cents. The takeover is subject to
approval by Cockatoo Ridge shareholders and will be decided at a meeting in
February. Australia Commercial Wines was formed in December 2005 and


Omersown Wines web site, 2006

Minutes of Berri-Barmera District Council meeting, 16 Dec 2004.



acquired the former Rivers Wines facility, located on the Sturt Highway near
Dec 2005
Dec 2006

Rivers Wines
Australia Commercial Wines
Purchased by Barossa Valley based Cockatoo Ridge.

Cockatoo Ridge winery



Murray Pioneer, 5 Jan 2006.


Wineries & fruit processors

Cockatoo Ridge Wines Ltd has entered into voluntary administration.
It speculates to the Stock Exchange that both the company and its subsidiariesAustralian Commercial Wines Pty Ltd, Cockatoo Ridge Sales Pty Ltd, Cockatoo
Ridge Pty Ltd and Playford Wine Holdings Pty Ltd, are likely to become
insolvent in the current quarter amidst given trading conditions.
The South Australian company produces sparking, white and red wines bearing
the Cockatoo Ridge Label and other brands including Normans and Griffith
In addition, the company also owns a cellar door business near Tanunda in the
Barossa Valley and offices in Adelaide.
The board has appointed George Divitkos and Russell Henry Heywood-Smith of
BDO Kendalls as joint administrators after speculating the third quarter trading
scenario the company expects to endure.
Cockatoo Ridge recently tried without success to sell its winery at Monash in
the South Australian Riverland in an effort to get itself out of the troubling
waters, by paying off some of its debt. 20 Jan 2010 http://topnews.net.nz
The Riverland is Australia's largest winegrape production region. Cockatoo
Ridge Winery is equipped to store around 21 million litres and occupies 12.86
hectares on the Sturt Highway at Monash in the heart of the region. In addition
to major winery plant and equipment, there is a 60 tonne capacity weighbridge,
office accommodation and amenities, a tasting room, a fully equipped laboratory
and storage sheds.



Major producers in the region include Constellation Wines, Boars Rock, Thachi
Wines, Foster's Wine Estates, Yalumba, Pernod Ricard Pacific, Angove's and
Kingston Estate Wines. Sold Date: Sun 17-Jan-10

Packing shed
Arthur Hunt started a dried fruit packing house and built a shed immediately
west alongside the store in 1924.
The new Monash packing and grading shed is now finished and ready to deal
with the seasons crop. The building measures 40ft. x 40ft. and is 14ft. high. It is
fitted with a 5-ton Brockhouse stemmer and grader driven by a 7h.p. Blackstone
engine. 360
Seven hands are employed at the shed and the fruit is graded, packed and got
away for dispatch. Mr. Oats is carrier for the shed, and the pack is taken to Berri
to Morgan by steamer.361
In 1925 he added a second shed and that year treated over 200 tons of fruit.
Last year Mr. Hunt entered the packing business and erected an up-to-date plant
but with the growth of the settlement and consequent increased tonnages it has
been necessary to duplicate the shed, the building as now extended having a
frontage of 40 feet to the Morgan road and a depth of 60 feet. The latest ideas
have been embodied in the remodelling of the business, so that Mr. Hunt in
addition to packing fruit suitable for the Home market, will by his personal
supervision be in a position to turn out that quality fruit Mr. Caro so ardently
appealed in his report regarding the London trade. We are informed by Mr. Hunt
that through the increased tonnage this season, together with the improved
facilities for packing and grading, his charges will be 7 per ton for packing and
grading, double wiring of boxes and delivery on the boat at Berri.362
The local shed is in full swing now and Mr. Arthur Hunt, the proprietor, advises
that his first shipment of fruit was dispatched by the Cannally on Tuesday last,
a consignment of 26 tons. Up to date 50odd tons of currants have been
received, most of these being 2crown of a good sample. Sultanas are being
received now and the fruit to date is undoubtedly of splendid quality. The best
fruit brought in so far is from Mr. Henwoods block on Lone Gum, this being 4
crown fruit.363
Around 1926 Arthur Hunt leased the shed to Jack Minnis and his brother, who
traded under the name of Maud M. Minnis. The business broke away from the
Australian Dried Fruit Association (ADFA).
In 1931 T. S. Bowen and Mathew Johnson bought shed from Mr. Hunt and
trading rights from the brothers Thomas and John Minnis trading under the

Murray Pioneer, 8 Feb 1924.

Murray Pioneer, 2 May 1924.
362 Murray Pioneer, 30 Jan 1925.
363 Murray Pioneer, 27 Mar 1925.


Wineries & fruit processors

name "Monash Packing Company". Mr Albert Sydeny Lock was employed as

In 1936 Mr Johnson retired from partnership and in 1937 the business was
taken over by Crowe and Newcombe Limited. During the war labour shortages
meant the shed ceased packing operations and served as a receiver of fruit for
the Barmera packing shed. After the war it was de-registered and sold to Mr
Rowan, of Monash store.

Berri Distillery
The Berri Growers Co-operative distillery, located at Glossop, crushed grapes
grown in the Berri Irrigation Area, to be made into wine, brandy and spirit. Major
Minagall of Monash served as a director in 1925.
The distillery is in full swing and a continuous string of vehicles going to and fro
is kept up from well before sunrise till after dark. The doradilla crop generally
appears to be lighter than anticipated, but still there is a big quantity of fruit to
be transferred to the distillery at Glossop. The road recently has been cutting up
very badly, but with the rains over the week-end they should stand up better
In 1925 many growers were critical of the distillery for selling spirit at a low
The affairs of the Distillery are deeply involved in the Doradilla problem. The
area served covers the vast proportion of the vast, and perhaps ill advised,
plantings of the doradilla by the Soldier Settlement Department. The slump in
spirit prices from the high values ruling in 1918 to low water mark in the
middle of 1924 gave the directors a hard row to hoe. At the period when the
Soldier Settlement Department began to doubt the wisdom of further Dora
plantings the Gordo was used extensively for later work.365
Berri Estates, 2006
Following the end of World War 1 many returned service men, through the
Soldier Settlement Scheme, were assigned small allotments of land on the rich
fertile soils along the banks of the River Murray. A significant number of these
veterans planted vines and orchards, and within a few years annual production
increased dramatically.
In 1922 a group of grape growers responded to this increase in grape production
by establishing Berri Growers Co-operative Distillery to improve the processing
capacity of the Riverland region. As the name indicates the main products
produced in the early years were all brandy spirit, it wasn't until the mid 1930's
that the emphasis shifted to fortified wines and the organisation changed its
name to the Berri Co-operative Winery and Distillery


Murray Pioneer, 15 May 1925.

Murray Pioneer, 27 Jun 1925.



In the ensuing years it became quite evident that consumer preferences were
moving away from fortified wines and towards table wine and to cater for this
increasing demand, the production capabilities of the winery were expanded in
1958. In conjunction with this infrastructure change the growers of the region
were encouraged to plant more premium table wine grape varieties.
Berri Estates, as the winery has become known, established itself as the major
player in the cask market, and this position was strengthened on July 1, 1982,
when Renmano Wines merged with Berri Estates to form Consolidated Cooperative Wineries Limited. Following a voluntary restructuring December 1989
the group became Berri Renmano Limited. The Berri Estates winery is
Australia's largest single winery and distillery complex, processing 70,000
tonnes of grapes annually. It is well equipped with modern draining, pressing,
clarifying and chilling facilities to guarantee the quality of all its products. It has
the capacity to store over 73 million litres of wine and of this, two million litres
are devoted to wood storage in oak hogsheads and puncheons for fortified wine
maturation with a further seven million litres of stainless steel storage contained
inside specially constructed refrigerated cold-rooms.
The Berri Estates Winery as it stands today is testimony to the drive and tenacity
of the co-operative's founders; while the pursuit of excellence and the high
standard of Berri products available today is a credit to the quality of all the
people involved with this major Riverland operation. Fruit is sourced from over
850 private grape growers in the Riverland region, primarily members of the
strategic partner, CCW Cooperative Limited. The winemakers work closely with
the growers and local viticultural groups to continually improve the quality of

Berri Co-operative Packing Union Ltd.

Founded in 1917 with just 17 growers as shareholders by 1962 it had nearly
500 growers. The BCPU was the main packing house for dried fruit in the Berri
Irrigation Area.

Riverland Fruit Producers Co-Operative Ltd.

Established in 1959 for the production of fruit juice.

Toora Vale (Berri) Pty Ltd

TooraVale or Tooravale has produced glace fruit and other produce at its
Toora Vale road factory for over 70 years. The factory location, midway
between Monash and Berri was known as Toorak or Toorak Valley in the
1920s. By the 1940s the name Toorak had fallen into disuse and the area
was referred to as Berri. The area is now part of the Monash district.
Tooravale, 1933
Ern Morris and Roy Haliday worked adjoining blocks and both had large
plantings of gordo and malaga grapes. These varieties were difficult to dry on
racks and prices were very low. The two men were experimenting separately
with dehydration and the decided to amalgamate as Halliday & Morris,

www.hardywines.com.au/wines/berriestates.html, 2006


Wineries & fruit processors

processing table raisins known as "London Layers". These found a ready
market, the company of Toora-Vale was formed [in 1933], and began to produce
packs of glace fruits as well.367
New fruit alliance forged, 1996
Monash fruit processing factory Tooravale will join forces with the Riverland
Fruit Co-operative to form one of the most diversified fruit processing
companies in Australia. The new company, Sunnyland Fruits, will operate
temporarily from Tooravale's existing factory on Vale Rd, Monash and RFC's
Renmark factory, but will relocate to a new state-of-the-art facility at an
undisclosed location in the Riverland within two years. It will source its fruit
from companies including the Riverland Fruit Co-operative and produce and
pack dried, glace, fresh and frozen fruit. Tooravale currently employs about 150
people, including seasonal workers, and it is expected no jobs will be lost
through the new venture. 368

Sunnyland Fruits was formed as a joint venture between Riverland Fruit Cooperative and Robern Menz at the Adelaide fruit processor's Tooravale factory
near Berri in 1999. The new venture operated across two sites, with glace and
frozen fruit processed at the old Toora Vale factory at Monash while the cooperative retained the dried fruit and packaging operations at its Renmark

Sunnyland fruits
Stewart heads new fruit company, 1999
New processing company Sunnyland Fruits started business last week as one of
Australias most diversified fruit processing companies. Sunnyland Fruits is a
joint venture between the Riverland Fruit Co-operative and Monash fruit
processing factory TooraVale. New company chief executive officer, and former
RFC deputy CEO, Paul Stewart said this week the melding of the two
companies would form a "one stop shop" for local growers. He said Sunnyland
Fruits would source its fruit primarily from the RFC and then process and pack
it for the dried, fresh, glace and frozen fruit market. The company will be
operating across both the former TooraVale factory at Monash and the RFCs
Renmark factory pending its relocation to a new state-of-the-art facility within
the Riverland.369


Child of the Valley, Peg Mortimer (1996).

Murray Pioneer, 19 May 1999.
369 Murray Pioneer, 9 July 1999.



Sunnyland Fruits was placed into receivership in December of 2000 along with
its parent company Riverland Fruit Co-operative. The former Tooravale dried
fruit operation was a joint venture with Adelaide-based Robern Menz, and was
the first of RFC's assets to be sold. Pike River-based Simarloo bought the
trading name Sunnyland Fruits and most of its assets earlier this year.
Remaining assets are now under the company name Tooravale, which is in the
hands of court appointed liquidator Mark Hall, of Adelaide accounting firm
Tooravale timeline
1933 1968
Toora-Vale or Tooravale.
Tooravale, taken over by G. W. Sims and J. N. Thomas.
Jul 1999 Dec 2001 Sunnylands fruits.
2001 2002
Tooravale Simarloo.
Virgin Hills Simarloo.


Murray Pioneer, 8 Jun 2001.


Wineries & fruit processors

Murray Pioneer, 23 Jan 1925.

Land Army girls and male farm workers sitting on and by a large stack
of bagged potatoes whilst working at 'Toora Vale', [near Monash], 1945.
State Library of South Australia, B59948.


Shiraz Port produced by Morgens Vindana Winery at Monash, circa 1979.

Two Normans Winery Lone Gum wine labels.



Wineries & fruit processors

Omer Najar. Murray Pioneer, 2006.

Omersown label.



Grant Engineering Company
Founded by Grant Telfer in 1952, later known as Grant Sheds and run by
Grants daughter, Alison Halupka. Construction of quality farm, domestic and
commercial sheds & steel buildings.
In May 1964 Grant Engineering moved to a new factory at Glossop where the
official opening was performed by the Premier Sir Thomas Playford.
In 2004 The Riverland Development Corporation Business Manager Award
went to Grant Sheds manager Alison Halupka. In 2004 Alison was a finalist in
the Telstra Business Womens Awards for the Australian Government Private &
Corporate Sector prize.

Webber Enterprises
Founded by Bill Webber around 1971 as W. T Webber and Sons automotive
and General Engineers. Later run by Neil Webber as General Engineers, trailer
manufacturing, steel supplies, pump and bearing supplies, electrical contractor.
2 Distillery Rd, Monash (1986).

Hoffmann Engineers
Specialists in all steel fabricated products and steel framed buildings. Bigg road,
Monash (1986). By 2006 company had moved to Berri and was known as
Hoffy's Steel Erections Pty Ltd and was run by Peter Hoffmann.


Original settlers

Appendix I, Original settlers

Number. Name

in district.


Ernest Webb
10 Feb 1921
Winifred Lock
1 Dec 1921
Joseph William Cornwall
1 Dec 1921
Albert George Dermody
1 Dec 1921
Edwin RAYMOND Moss
Lloyd Atkinson Bigg
Dec 1918
William Tait Strahan
Sep 1918
Edward Arthur Bottrill
Jun 1919
Albert Sydney Lock
1 Dec 21
Goble Oct 1919
J T Robertson
Walter Norman Ellis
L Green
Thomas Victor Partridge
George James Hartley Smith 1919
William George Thompson
1 Dec 1921
George John Mason
10 Feb 1921
Stephen Robert Price
1 Dec 1921

Awald 1 Dec 1921
Block abandoned 1927
Leslie Sydney Trenaman
Samuel Edward Worman
10 Feb 1921
Jack Everam Gillett
11 Aug 1921
W F C Gunther
25 Aug 1921
Ernest A Golledge
12 Jan 1922
Edward Allen Jury
1 Nov 1919
F J Pope?
14 Aug 1920
George Herbert Willis
Albert James Smith
17 Nov 1921 1950



Original settlers

Harry Beriman
Phillip Benjamin Thomas
Jack Clarence Deex
R M Hackett
L S Potts
Ben Phelps
Terrence "Ted" Joseph Barry
M McDonald
William Percival Henwood
Frank Munroe
Reginald Russell
J G Potts
Charles Frederick Vogan
Stanley Roy McLaren
Arthur H Ferguson
Mrs Rosina Frances Harwood
Arthur Wright
D'Arcy Jury

Sep 1918



15 Apr 1919
Sep 1919
May 1919
Oct 1919
Jun 1919
Jun 1919


William Verco Paterson

1 Dec 1921
Herbert Norman Polden
1 Dec 1921 1925
Herbert Evans
10 Feb 1921
Ernest Evans
28 Jul 1921
James Norman McFarlane 10 Feb 1921
Arthur Oscar Richter
1 Feb 1922
Reginald Stirling Sykes
1 Feb 1922
John Hartley Sawtell
1 Dec 1921
John Frederick Haig
20 Oct 1921
Charles Francis Minagall
17 Mar 1919
Murray 15 Oct 1919
Arnold Ernest Sando
R M Kelly

J Reed
R W McCreanor
A Creed



Original settlers

Simeon Horsfall
1 Jul 1921
William Henry Gordon Morrell 1925
Hugh Pilling Holt
1 Dec 1921
James Sandeman
1 Dec 1921
Alfred Victor Stidston
10 Feb 1921 Monash?
William 1925
O A Obst

Edward Foster
Edward Foster
William Henry Spriggs

1 Dec 1921
26 Jan 1922
28 Jul 1921

William James Mawby

Michael Ignatius Dwyer
John Hurst
Louis Hermann Lehmann
Amos Harvey Heward
Ernest Francis Harding
Leslie William Horton
Mary Agnes Lowman
Rodolf Nelson
Medbury Wallis Nicholas
Lionel Leonard Elleway
Samuel Henry Heath
George Gale
Albert John Soderberg
Hector Reginald Pryor
James Henry Ralph
Charles Thomas Clark
William James Lowe
Thomas Daniel Leonard
Thomas Henry OCallaghan
Arthur M Nelsson
George Howard King
Fred James Cocks
Clarence Clive Warnecke
Edward Charles Halliday

1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
10 Feb 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Feb 1922
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921





Original settlers


Alfred Bernard Mortimer

1 Dec 1921
Harry March
1 Feb 1922
Herbert Kintore Traeger
1 Feb 1922
George Percival "Andy" Fisher 1 Feb 1922
Arthur Hallam
1 Feb 1922
Frank Horace Dyer
1 Dec 1921
Cyril Watson St George 1 Dec 1921
William Mathew Underwood 1 Dec 1921
Reginald Thomas Grantley 1 Dec 1921
James Henry Millington
1 Dec 1921
Victor Grace Adams
1 Dec 1921
Roy Northway Pash
1 Feb 1922
Lawrence Dudley Massey
1 Feb 1922
John Rogers McKnight
1 Dec 1921
A Johanson
Jul 1921
Cyril W H Crammond?
1 Dec 1921
Allan Harvey
1 Dec 1921
Sydney John Howard Ranford 1 Dec 1921
William John Shaughnessy
1 Dec 1921
Roy Kernot
1 Dec 1921
Edwin Hurd Kernot
1 Dec 1921

Ernest Nelson Hall

Edward Roy Whitelaw
Harold George Taylor
William Durroch Campbell
Laurice Hedley Maddern
Laurice Hedley Maddern
S Fundak?
William Mathew Underwood
Roy Northway Pash
Franjo Tassy
Victor Grace Adams
William James Lowe
Charles Thomas Clark
Charles Thomas Clark
Lawrence Dudley Massey
Arthur Hallam
Amos John Cook

1 Feb 1922
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
17 Nov 1921
17 Nov 1921
17 Nov 1921
22 Sep 1921
22 Sep 1921
22 Sep 1921
17 Nov 1921
17 Nov 1921

Jul 1946




Original settlers
17 Nov 1921


Amos John Cook

Daisy May Earl
Henry Albert Venz
Edward Owen Clancy
Amos John Cook
Angas Frederick Cross
Duncan John Napier Fisher
Wilfred Edward Rix


Rosslyn Wright Nixon

1 Dec 1921


Francis Horace Nixon

Keith Bowyer Hocking
Wesley George Trotman

1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921


Kurt Gerhardt Feige

Basil Vivian Tydeman

1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921


George Tyrell Evans

1 Dec 1921

Herbert Kintore Traeger

Frank Lincoln Richardson

8 Sep 1921


Norman Henry Jellet

George Canning Jackson
Arthur William Harding
Hurtle Harold Stone
Harry Watson
William Ernest Foster
H Hodgson
John Ellis
Albert John Hoskin

1 Dec 1921
17 Nov 1921
17 Nov 1921
17 Nov 1921
8 Dec 1921
17 Nov 1921
8 Dec 1921
Jul 1921
17 Nov 1921

17 Nov 1921
1 Dec 1921 1925
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921 pre 1935
1 Dec 1921
1 Dec 1921

red 1926

Left Jul


World War I


Appendix 2, World War I service

Monash was settled by Australian returned serviceman and were repatriated
under the Soldier Settler scheme. They served at Gallipoli (Dardenelles),
Palestine, Egypt, France, Belgium and England.
The soldier settlers of Monash served in every Australian Imperial Forces
(A.I.F.) infantry battalion raised (wholly or partly) in South Australia, the 10th,
12th, 16th, 27th, 32nd, 43rd, 48th and 50th. Some enlisted in interstate
battalions and moved to Monash after the war. A small number served in British
Most served in the 10th battalion, 27th battalion or Light Horse units while
others served with Headquarters, Artillery Corps, Signals Corps, Machine Gun
sections, Pioneer (engineers) battalions, Medical Corps, Supply Corps, Mining
Corps, Flying Corps and Navy.









Station hand








Army Officer



Post Office assistant


Iron moulder



10th battalion

Lloyd Atkinson Bigg

Frank Adolph Murray Bollenhagen

Frederick Cecil Goble Bollenhagen

Amos John Cook

Michael Ignatius Dwyer

Frank Horace Dyer

Thomas William Gainsborough

Samuel Henry /Heath/

Keith Bowyer Hocking

Darcy Jury

John STUART Jury

Roy /Kernot/

Malcolm MacDonald

Roy Wilfred McCreanor

Charles Reid McIvor

Charles Francis Minagall

James Henry Ralph

Wilfred Edward Rix/

John Hartley Sawtell

Albert James Smith

Phillip Benjamin Thomas

Leonard Cecil Tucker

Basil Vivian Tydeman

Renmark, SA

Lameroo, SA





North Adelaide, SA
Adelaide, SA



Henley Beach, SA



Streaky Bay, SA

Goodwood, SA

Broken Hill, NSW

Berri, SA



Glenelg, SA











Mallala, SA

Berri, SA

North Adelaide, SA

Broken Hill, NSW

Uraidla, SA

Magill, SA

Adelaide, SA

Lyrup, SA

Lyrup, SA

Echunga, SA


























22 Aug 1914

12 Nov 1915

23 Nov 1914

26 Aug 1914

22 Dec 1914

16 Dec 1914

22 Aug 1915

24 Aug 1914

14 Jun 1915

17 Dec 1914

4 Feb 1915


19 Apr 1919

27 Aug 1917

31 Dec 1916

13 Aug
13 Aug 1918

5 Jan 1919

1 Feb1918

3 May 1919

20 Jun 1917

15 Feb 1918

6 Nov 1919

21 Dec 1917

10 Mar 1918

30 Dec 1915
9 Jun 1916

16 Jun 1919

21 Jul 1918

14 Dec 1918

5 Sep 1919

11 Dec 1918

3 May 1919

12 Nov 1916


2 Jan 1915

12 Jan 1915

25 Sep 1916

27 Nov 1914

19 Jul 1915

23 Aug 1915

20 May 1918

11 May 1918

16 Aug 1915






Medically unfit


Hon. Disch.



Block #

World War I


C of E Minister

George William Quinton

William Tait Strahan

Charles Frederick Vogan

Reginald Thomas Grantley Telfer

Albert JOHN Soderberg

Arnold Ernest Sando

Reginald Russell

Francis Lincoln Richardson

Roy Northway Pash

Thomas Lister Minnis

Albert Edward McHugh

Jeffrey Mathew Kernot

George Gale

Walter Norman Ellis


Drapers assistant


Jack Clarence Deex

Albert George Dermody


Victor Grace Adams



Frank Munroe

27th battalion



John Samson Carlyon

16th Battalion


Hindmarsh, SA

Broken Hill, NSW

Karoonda, SA

Bowden, SA.

Strathalbyn, SA


Marryatville, SA








Wongan Hills, WA

Parkside, SA













15 Jan 1915

22 Jun 1915

8 Jun 1915

29 Apr 1918


17 Nov 1915

13 Sep 1915

10 Sep 1914

4 Jul 1916


13 Apr 1919

5 Apr 1917

1 Aug 1919


15 Feb 1918

6 Nov 1916

20 Jan 1916

11 Jan 1918


Medically unfit

Medically unfit




World War I



Cyril Watson St George Teasdale

Leslie Sydney Trenaman


Station hand

Motor driver



Ernest Alfred Jarvis

George Howard King

Albert Sydney Lock

Edward Roy Whitelaw

Sydney John Howard Ranford


Stable proprietor

William H. Bertram (field ambulance)

George Tyrell Evans (13th LH)

Carpenter & Joiner


Hugh Pilling Holt

Wilfred Edward Rix

Australian Flying Corp


Thomas Henry O'Callaghan (11th LH)

Edward John Turner (4th Brigade train)



George Thomas Harris

Light Horse (misc)


Arthur Hallam


Bank Clerk

Edwin Hurd Kernot

9th Light Horse



Edward ALLEN Jury

3rd Light Horse

Henley Beach, SA

Kapunda, SA

Mildura, Vic

Strathalbyn, SA


Lockleys, SA

Stockport, SA

Caltowie, SA

Berri, SA

Parkside, SA


Auburn East, SA

Markarantie, SA

Glenelg, SA

Mallala, SA



































16 Dec

2 Oct 1917

10 Aug 1915

9 Feb 1915

29 Dec


28 Feb

3 April 1916

4 Nov 1915

14 Jun
23 Mar

4 Nov 1914


15 Sep
23 Jul 1915

3 Sep 1915


6 May

6 Oct 1919

11 Apr 1916

25 Nov


12 Jun
18 July
5 Mar

10 Jul


1 May
22 Nov
16 Sep


Medically unfit

Tx to 3rd LH


Medically unfit

Block #

Block #

Block #

World War I

Locomaotive fireman

Frederick James Cocks

John Hurst


Katanning, WA







9 Jan 1917



Block #

World War I


World War I

Many of the returned soldier settlers endured injuries or serious diseases from
their war service. In World War I the term Gun Shot Wound (GSW) was used to
describe any injury caused by bullets or shell fragments.
Lloyd Bigg

Gun Shot Wound to left leg, returned to Australia.

Edward A Bottrill

Gun Shot Wound to left forearm, high explosive

shell caused compound fracture of both bones in
forearm, returned to Australia.

John Carlyon

Multiple Gun Shot Wounds, dangerously wounded,

Gun Shot Wound to head, returned to Australia.

Thomas Clark

GSW to neck, returned to service.

Gassed in France, returned to service.
Accidental severe GSW to right knee, returned to

Kurt Feige

Gun Shot Wound to right hip in Dardenelles,

returned to service.

Amos Heward

Gas poisoning in France, returned to Australia.

Leslie Horton

Gun Shot Wound to neck, returned to Australia.

Andrew Johanson

Gun Shot Wound to chest and taken prisoner.

Released when his position was overrun and
returned to service.

John Stuart Jury

Gun Shot Wound to right leg, returned to Australia.

Elleway, Lionel

Gun Shot Wound to hand, returned to service.

Gun Shot Wound to buttock, returned to service.

Stanley R McLaren

Wounded In Action (thigh), France 1918, returned to


Alfred Mortimer

Gun Shot Wound, returned to service.

Gassed, returned to Australia.

Ernest Morris

Wounded In Action, France 1916, returned to

Severe Gun Shot Wound (left leg), France 1917,
returned to Australia.

Frank Munroe

Wounded at Gallipoli, GSW to foot, returned to

service. Later invalided on unrelated medical

Francis H Nixon

Wounded at Gallipoli, returned to service.

Roy Pash

GSW to right leg, returned to Australia.

James Ralph

Gun Shot Wound (right leg), compound fracture,

returned to Australia.

Wilfred Rix

Wounded with bullet in face, Gallipoli, returned to

Wounded In Action, France, Gun Shot Wound to left

World War I


leg, transferred to Flying Corps.

Arnold E Sando

Gun Shot Wound to left arm, returned to service.

John H Sawtell

Chronic dysentery, returned to Australia.

Albert J Smith

Gun Shot Wound to right arm, returned to Australia.

Phillip B Thomas

Gun Shot Wound to scalp, returned to service.

Gun Shot Wound to right shoulder, returned to

Basil Tydeman

Gun Shot Wound to head at Gallipoli, returned to


Charles F Vogan

Gun Shot Wound right foot, returned to Australia.

Many of the settlers carried serious war injuries for the rest of their life, often
requiring many years of travel to Adelaide for on-going operations. One sad
case is of a settler whose war injury, incurred 23 years previously, caused such
unrelenting suffering that he took his own life.
Obituary, the late B. V. Tydeman, 1938
[Basil Vivian Tydeman] served in Egypt and was at the landing at Gallipoli. He
was wounded when on the Peninsula a piece of shell entered his head behind the
left ear, passed across the back of the head, and was finally taken out under the
right shoulder when in hospital. The regimental sergeant major of the company
at one stage detailed him for instruction at a gas school and at this school the late
Mr. Tydeman received his commission [as Lieutenant].
Returning to Australia after the war, he joined the planting gang which was
working at Lone Gum and Monash and when the latter settlement was gazetted
he obtained the block on which he was living at the time of his death. The late
Mr. Tydeman was well regarded through-out the district and was known to have
been of a very generous type. Nothing was too much trouble for Doc, as he
was familiarly known. A bachelor, he was a deep reader and had a very
independent disposition. Of late he has been known to have suffered a lot with
his head and had been unable to sleep. His death came as a severe shock to the

The opinion is expressed by a local R.S.L. official that diggers should wear their
service medals and other war decorations at the function to be tendered in
honour of His Excellency the Governor and Lady Hore-Ruthven next week. The
disinclination of most diggers to sport their medals is not due to any lack of
pride in their possession but rather to a distaste for appearing conspicuous.372
Australians were awarded 620 Distinguished Service Orders (DSO) in World
War 1, 36 to South Australians, including one Monash settler Major Charles
Minagall DSO, 10th AIF Battalion Headquarters.


Murray Pioneer, Aug 1938.

Murray Pioneer, 15 Mar 1934.


World War I
Charles Minigall DSO, 1917
During the period 26 February, 1917, to date Major Minigall has carried out the
duties of quartermaster of the Battalion. He has shown great devotion to duty
and rendered most valuable service in the equipping and feeding of the
Battalion. In the operation of the Battalion during this period, which included
the fighting near LE HARQUE in the advance towards BAPAUME in February,
1917, and later in the heavy fighting at BULLECOURT in April and May, 1917,
he never tired in his ceaseless energies to ensure the comfort of the men of the

Australians were awarded 9,926 Military Medals (MM) in WW1 with 726 to
South Australians, of which 10 were Monash settlers. Just 472 Australians
received the bar to the MM including one Monash settler.
Pte. Amos Cook, MM
43rd Btn, attached 11th Brigade HQ.
Pte. John Haigh, MM
48th Battalion.
L/Cpl. Allan Harvey, MM
6th Field Company Engineers.
Andrew Johanson, MM
2nd Div. Signal Company Engineers.
Sgt. Charles McIvor, MM with bar 10th Battalion.
Sapper William Mawby, MM
3rd Field Ambulance.
Francis Horace Nixon, MM
Australian Army Service Corps AASC.
Rosslyn Nixon, MM
Australian Army Service Corps AASC.
Pte. Keith Hocking, MM
3rd Field Ambulance, AAMC.
Sgt. James Sandeman, MM
12th Battalion.
Amos Cook MM, 1918
On the 11th/12th August, 1918, during operations on the SOMME, near
PROYART, this man, during the attack, undertook many dangerous journeys to
advanced Headquarters across heavily shelled areas, and at times coming under
heavy machine gun fire. He also showed great pluck and absolute disregard of
danger in entering several enemy dugouts and ridding them of the enemy and
preparing a suitable place for forward stations. In this way he was responsible
for the capture of 8 prisoners and his action was a splendid example to the
remainder of his comrades.374
Settlers in this area will be interested to know of Private A. J. Cook, late of the
43rd Battalion, who was called to Government House during the visit of the
Prince, to receive his Military Medal. Mrs. Cook was also present at the
ceremony, which was rather in the form of a private reception, only a very select
few attending. Mr. Cook won his decoration during the fighting at PROYART in
the Somme sector in August, 1918. This particular stunt was the bearing of
important despatches through to brigade headquarters during tremendously
heavy fire by the enemy. Mr. and Mrs. Cook are living in Mr. Bollenhagen's
house at present, and we hope that he will be successful in securing a block in
the Monash area for which he has applied.375


3rd Australian Brigade reccomendations 20 October, 1917, A.W.M. archives.

Commonwealth Gazette' No. 61.
375 Murray Pioneer, 3 Sep 1920.

World War I


John Haigh MM ,1918

For conspicuous good work and devotion to duty at ALBERTON March 28th,
1918. Enemy snipers were causing casualties amongst our men. Private HAIGH
volunteered to work out and locate them. He went forward and counter sniped so
successfully that the pressure was relieved. He was wounded whilst carrying out
his work.376
Lance Corporal Allan Harvey, MM, 1918
One the night 5 July, 1918, after an advance into enemy positions between
VILLERS-BRETONNEUX and the SOMME, L/Cpl. HARVEY was assisting in
supervision of a new communication trench across old No Mans Land. The
location of this trench was swept at frequent intervals by M.G. fire and by heavy
gas shelling, but its completion in one night was of great importance. L/Cpl.
HARVEY helped his Officer to lay out the tracing tape and to tend the party on
the job. About two hours afterwards, 37 of the 120 Infantry in the party had
either become casualties or been sent home on account of the gas, L/Cpl.
HARVEY set a splendid example throughout by bandaging wounded,
reorganising his portion of the job, and by himself working in the parts nearest
the shelling. He did at least double the Infantry task and his splendid example
was largely instrumental in the completion of the trench.377

Keith Hocking MM, 1917

At Bullecourt, France on 4th May 1917 Private Hocking showed exceptional
courage in crossing an area swept by machine gun fire to the assistance of a man
wounded and exposed to this fire. He dragged the man into a shell hole and
arrested haemorrhage though still exposed to continuous fire and every
movement on his part drawing a fresh burst. As a result the wounded man was
eventually brought back safely to cover. He showed a fine example of personal
bravery throughout and assisted largely in the rapidity of the evacuations.378
Andrew Johanson MM, 1916
Great devotion to duty near MOUQUET FARM between 12th and 15th August,
1916. He held an isolated portion of the line under heavy fire and against
counter attacks with a few men and it was only due to his fine example and
cheerfulness that the position was retained.379
Charles McIvor MM, 1917
During operations at POLYGON WOOD east of YPRES on 19/22nd Sept.,
1917, Sgt. McIvor displayed great courage and resourcefulness when in charge
of carrying parties. By his skilful leadership he brought his men through the
enemy barrage, returning himself many times to bring up small parties. When
there was an urgent call for wire and pickets and there were none on the forward


12th Australian Infantry Brigade recommendations dated 31 Mar 1918, A.W.M. archives.
National Archives of Australia.
378 National Archives of Australia?
379 Government Gazette No. 62.


World War I
dump, he salvaged sufficient to carry on with and thereby greatly assisted in the
consolidation of the position won.380
Charles McIvor Bar to Military Medal, 1918
In the attack on MERRIS on night 20/30th. July 1918 Sergt. McIvor
commanded a section as the attack commenced. He personally killed one of the
enemy, took two prisoners and captured a machine gun. Later he commanded a
patrol through very difficult country and killed a number of the enemy and
recaptured a Lewis gun from them. He set a splendid example of courage and
cool determination throughout the operation. Citation: London Gazette 30424.
Date Received: 12 December 1917.381
William Mawby MM, 1917
For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. During the attack on enemy
positions near Zonnebeke (east of Ypres) on 26th October, 1917, Sapper
MAWBY assisted to maintain an important telephone communication to the
forward observation station a task necessitating his working under a heavy
enemy barrage. His personal courage and keen devotion to duty were most
conspicuous on this and other occasions during the recent operations.382

The Monash soldier settlers included a Major, one Captain and ten Lieutenants.
Lieutenant Keith Hocking (MM)
Lieutenant Roy Kernot
Major Charles Minagall
Hon. Lieutenant, Norman Morison
Lieutenant Alfred Mortimer
Lieutenant Francis Horace Nixon
2nd lieutenant Rosslyn Nixon
2nd Lieutenant Herbert Polden
Lieutenant William Shaughnessy
Captain Chaplain William Strahan
2nd Lieutenant, Leslie Trenaman
Lieutenant Basil Tydeman


382 Government Gazette No. 95, 27 Jun 1918.

10th Battalion
1st Div Engineers
Quartermaster, 10th Battalion
Red Cross, 8th Battalion HQ
46th Battalion
Australian Army Service Corps
1st Division Train
43rd Battalion
43rd Battalion
1st Division Train AASC
3rd Light Horse
4th Divisional Artillery

World War I


Victor Grace ADAMS
Terence J BARRY
Harry Beriman
Lloyd A BIGG
Frederic C G Bollenhagen
Joseph H BROWN
Charles T CLARK
Frederick J COCKS
Michael I DWYER
Frank H DYER
Hallam T EARL
George T Evans
Kurt G Feige
George GALE

Charles Minagall
Thomas Minnis





World War II

Appendix 3, World War II service

Seven men from Monash died on active service during the war.383 Six are
commemorated on the School Honour roll for former students and seven on the
Memorial Hall honour roll. Two others who had grown up in Monash also died
on active service.
Pte. Harry Baker SX9324 of 2/2 Reserve Motor Transport Company was killed
in action on 13 February 1942, Malaya.
Kranji War Cemetery is 22 kilometres north of the city of Singapore, on the
north side of Singapore Island overlooking the Straits of Johore.
Mr. And Mrs. J. W. Cornwall of Monash have been notified
that their elder son SX2928 Private Horace N. Cornwall was
killed in action on September 1. He was among the first to
offer his services when enlistments were called for but it was
only after his third attempt that he was accepted, and he went
into Camp in June 1940. Private Cornwall sailed for overseas
in November 1940 and was wounded at Tobruk in May 1941.
He also served in Syria and returned from overseas in March
of this year. 384
Cornwall Street in Berri is named in his honour.
Craftsman John Hood of the AEME attached to 2/48th Infantry Battalion died of
illness on active service 4 September, 1943 at Atherton, Queensland.385 Hood
Street in Berri is named in his honour.
Rocky Creek, Queensland, 18 August 1943.
Patients of the 2/6th Australian General Hospital
enjoying a game of cards.
Second from left; SX8063 Pte J. C. Hood, 2/48th
Australian Infantry Battalion.
Australian War Memorial, image 056704.


Murray Pioneer, 8 Aug 1946.

Murray Pioneer, 1942.
385 www.awm.gov.au

World War II


Kenneth King enlisted in the army on 5 Aug 1940 and transferred to the R.A.F.
on 28 Mar 1942. His squadron flew Avro Lancasters with R.A.F. Bomber
Command's 1 Group The bulk of the squadron's operations formed part of the
strategic bombing offensive against Germany, although prior to, and during, the
DDay landings in June 1944, it was employed in support of Allied ground
Flt-Sgt. Observer Kenneth Leslie King, RAAF, who has been
missing since June 10, 1944, after a raid over France, is now
known to have lost his life. This news was received by his
wife, Mrs. K. L King, of Buller street, Prospect, and his
parents, Mr. and Mrs. L. F. King, of Monash. The British Air
Ministry received a report from the Mayor of Elancourt,
France. that a Lancaster crashed near Trappes on the night of
June 10-11, 1944, and that Flt-Sgt. King, who was bomb
aimer, and four of his companions were killed and buried in
the Elancourt Cemetery by the parish priest in the presence of
the citizens. Flt-Sgt. King left Adelaide on April 18,1943, and went to England
via America. He spent his youth at Cowell. Before enlisting he was employed by
the Adelaide Electric Supply Co.386
Metro Vickers Lancaster Mk.1s Serial #ME696 of 450 squadron.
When lost this aircraft had a total of 91 hours. Airborne 2313 10 Jun 1944 from
Binbrook [Lincolnshire, England] to attack rail facilities. Crashed at Elancourt
(Yvelines), where all were originally buried, just to the NW of Trappes. They
have been subsequently re-interred in Viroflay New Communal Cemetery some
4 km E of Versailles. P/O R. L. Nicholson RAAF KIA, Sgt C. A. Cunningham
KIA, Sgt. A. Fisher KIA, Flight Sergeant K. L. King RAAF KIA, Sgt. J. P.
Murray KIA, Sgt. W. L. Arksey RCAF KIA, Sgt. A. J. Collett RCAF KIA. 387
Private SX623, 2/10 Australian Infantry Battalion. Knightsbridge War Cemetery
is located 750 metres south of the main road from Benghazi to Tobruk, about 25
kilometres west of Tobruk. Max was an former student of Monash Primary
School and his name appears on the school honour roll. Paddick Street in Berri
is named in his honour. Died 2 May 1941age 23.


Advertiser, 4 April 1945.

www.lostbombers.co.uk, viewed 23 May 2008.


World War II
Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Ralph, of Monash, River Murray, have
received word that their eldest son, Pte. J. H Ralph, 21. has
been reported missing, believed killed, in New Guinea. Pte.
Ralph, who has a wife and baby son at Semaphore, enlisted in
the AIF in February, 1941. He sailed overseas the following
June, served in Palestine and Syria, and returned to Australia
in March, 1942. He was born at Monash and lived there before
his enlistment.388

He was employed by his father prior to his enlistment. Ralph Street in Berri is
named in his honour.
Arthur Sawtell enlisted in the army at age 17 by pretending he was four months
older than he was. Six months later he transferred to the R.A.A.F.
Mr. and Mrs J. H. Sawtell. of Unley, late of Monash, have
been further informed that their only son, Flt-Sgt. Arthur
Hartley Sawtell, 19, who was reported missing on February 24
is now believed to have lost his life as a result of enemy action
while on air operations overseas. Flt-Sgt. Sawtell joined the
RAAF at the age of 18 and after having been engaged on
active service over enemy territory in the Pacific area left for
England, where he was attached to a squadron of Coastal
Command. Before enlistment he was employed on the office
staff of W. H. Burford and Sons Ltd.389
R.A.A.F. Flight Sergeant Arthur Sawtell flew with 75 (NZ) Squadron as a
Gunner aboard a Stirling bomber. His aircraft took off from R.A.F. station Mepal,
Cambridgeshire at 17:10 on 24 Feb 1944 on a "Gardening" mission to lay sea
mines in Keil Bay off Denmark and did not return. His body was washed ashore
in German occupied Denmark.
Stirling Mk.III bomber of 75 Squadron, serial EH948
Part of a batch of 120 Short S.29 Stirling Mk.III. Delivered by Austin Motors
Ltd. to No.75 Squadron 17 Jul 1943. Airborne 6:10 pm 24 Feb 1944 from Mepal
[Cambridgeshire, England] to plant mines in Kiel Bay [Germany]. Crashed in
the target area. Flight Sergeant Sawtell is buried in Abenra Cemetery
[Denmark]; his comrades have no known graves and are commemorated on the
Runnymede Memorial. F/S H. H. Bruhns RNZAF KIA, Sgt J. W. Harry KIA,
Sgt. E. A. Wilkes KIA, Sgt. L. L. Butler RNZAF KIA, Sgt. W. J. Summers KIA,
F/S A.H.Sawtell RAAF KIA, Sgt. R. E. Hall KIA.390

Advertiser, 26 September 1942.

Advertiser, 11 Nov 1944.
390 www.lostbombers.co.uk, viewed 23 May 2008.

World War II


Pilot Officer Harry Worman 417438 2 Squadron RAAF was

killed in World War II, age 21. The Northern Territory Memorial
stands in Adelaide River War Cemetery and is one of several
memorials erected to commemorate the men of the Australian
Army, the Royal Australian Air Force and the Australian
Merchant Navy who lost their lives in the southwest Pacific
region during the 19391945 War and have no known grave.
Worman Street in Berri is named in his honour.

Mr. and Mrs. S. E. Worman. of 15 Owen street, Woodville, formerly of Berri

have been advised that their only son, PO Harry Benjamin Worman, 21, is
missing, believed to have lost his life on November 4 as the result of air
operations. He was pilot of a Mitchell bomber detailed to carry out an offensive
sweep against enemy shipping. During a formation strafing attack on enemy
barges in Timor, the plane, while under intense AA fire from shore positions,
appeared to be hit and was seen to dive vertically and crash into the sea. Crews
of accompanying planes saw no further sign of the plane or members of the
crew. PO Worman was on the staff of the Department of Lands when be enlisted
in 1941. Advertiser 8 November 1944
North American B-52 Mitchell bomber, RAAF
06/11/44 Shot down by 40mm anti-aircraft fire during a 4 aircraft formation
attack on Japanese barges 5 miles SW of Atapoepoel near Timor. Dean Norman
notes "On an anti shipping sweep around the Timor, Alor and Wetar Islands,
FLTLT Selway, with FLGOFF Dave McQuoid in A47-14 and leading, came in
over land to attack and strafe some barges. During the attack FLTLT Selways
aircraft was hit in the starboard engine by anti-aircraft fire and attempted to pull
up, but rolled right into a steep dive and knifed straight in. A sweep for survivors
was made for some time but no survivors were found". The crew were FLTLT
J.H. Selway 403381; PLTOFF H.B. Worman 417438; FLGOFF A.E. Pott
405932; WOFF J.F. Storman 415057; WOFF A.E. Hawkins 418837; FSGT R.C
Palfreyman 436941.391




World War II

Prisoners of War
Jury, John Stuart
May, Herbert Walter
Smith, Albert Henry
Wade, Steve

A Monash, River Murray, soldier L/Cpl Albert H. Smith, AIF, has given a
graphic story of prison conditions to the 'Murray Pioneer'. The Monash soldier
put in 2 J years in German prisons. He was-captured at Calmatta in Greece in
April 1911. He said that Stalag 18A, where he was for a time, is in Austria at

John Henry Burns, Corporal 2/27th Battalion, was awarded the Military Medal
on 23 Dec 1942. He was discharged as a Sergeant, 21 Australian Infantry
Training Battalion on 21 October 1944.

Dual Service
Despite their age many of the World War I returned soldiers volunteered for
regular service during World War II, most served with Garrison Battalions in
Australia. Others volunteered for the Home Guard and guarded places of
strategic importance such as the Berri pumping station.
Hoskin, Albert John
Maddern, Laurice Hedley
Maddocks, Henry Albert
Nixon, Rosslyn Wright

48658 Sergeant RAAF HQ
S34784 Army
S161 Major, Area Camp Staff Katherine, NT

Garrison battalions
Some of the ex-serviceman from World War I enlisted in World War II in the 4 th,
21st, and 24th Garrison battalions.
Additional units were formed after the start of the war that provided support for
the militia and relieved units of the tedium of garrison and vulnerable point
protection duties. The Australian Army recruited seven Garrison Battalions (1st 7th) from veterans of the First World War in October, 1939 and by January,1940
there were eight such battalions with a strength of 4,967 men. By 20th March,
1942 the twenty-eight such battalions existed organized into five garrison
The 25th and 33rd Garrison Battalions were based at Loveday internment camp.

Murray Pioneer 28 July 1944

www.patriotfiles.com, November 2009.

World War II


The 18th Garrison Battalion (coastal defense) was based in Sydney, NSW.
Barry, Terence Joseph
Cornwall, Joe
Ellis, Walter Norman
Feige, Kurt
Harvey, Alan
Jury, Alan
May, William James
Telfer, Reg
Webber, Bill

S32308 Private
Lance Sergeant

S485 Private

25 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion
4 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion
18 Garrison Battalion

Volunteer Defence Corps

The Volunteer Defence Corps, a "Home Guard" of units for local defence was
raised in each military district. For example, No 4 Queensland Battalion, the
Volunteer Defence Corps (VDC) was located at Nambour, Queensland with five
companies. These VDC battalions were consecutively numbered within each
district starting as No. 1.394
Maddocks, Herbert C.
Hocking, Keith B. (Vic)

S74860 Private 8 Battalion VDC

Lieutenant, 21 Battalion VDC

Australian Army
Around 57 Monash residents served in the Australian Army in World War II.
Five died on active service.
The first letter of the service number indicates the state of enlistment, eg:
S=South Australia.
An X after the state letter indicates service in the 2nd Australian Imperial Force
(A.I.F.). A soldier transferring from the militia to the A.I.F. would be allocated a
new service number with the X indication.
Absence of the X indicates service in the militia known as Citizens Military
Forces (CMF) or Australian Militia Forces (A.M.F.).
Baker, Harry C.
Barry, Terence J.
Bradley, Ernest
Brown, Joseph H.
Burns, John H. MM
Cross, Frederick G.
Cornwall, Herbert J.
Cornwall, Horace N.
Dermody, Eric J.
Dermody, M. John
Frick, Iva F.

SX9324 Private
S32308 Private
S26264 rank unkown
SX9830 Lance Corporal
SX4556 Corporal
SX39019 Private
SX814 Private and S23869
SX5928 Private
Transferred to RAAF
SX17259 Private
SX16615 Lance Corporal

www.patriotfiles.com, November 2009.


World War II
Henwood, William R.
Higgs, Reginald
Hill, Arthur A.
Holloway, William D.
Hood, John C.
Horvat, Ludovic H.
Horvat, Victor
Hoskin, Albert John
Hunt, George
Jennings, Tom B. S.
Jury, John S.
Jury, Lance
King, Kenneth L.
Ludas, Frank
Luksa, Vinko
Maddern, Geoff
Mason, Leonard L.
Matchett, Shirley F.
Mortimer, John W.
Maddocks, Henry A.
Maddocks, Herbert C.
May, Herbert W.
May, William J.
McCreanor, Louis E.
Millington, G.
Mortimer, John W.
Nicholas, Peter W.
Nielsen, Frank
Nielson, Margarette
Nixon, Rosslyn W.
Paddick, Maxwell G.
Parham, Peter E.
Perry, Alfred G.
Plew, Lancelot R.
Quinton, Frederick E.
Ralph, James H.
Sandeman, Raymond G.
Sawtell, Arthur H.
Smith, Albert H.
Snopek, Stjepan
Soderberg, Betty
Soderberg, Olive B.
Sonntag, Bertram J.
Stratman, Leonard
Teasdale, Francis S.
Thomas, Wesley J.
Wade, Steve
Wade, William J.
Wright, Stanley E.

SX4926 Private
Transferred to RAAF
SX27217 Private
TX2610 (ex resident)
SX8063 Craftsman
S30895 Private
SX22889 Corporal
S34777 rank unknown
S74846 Private
S212664 Corporal
S1007 Private
NX157251 Sergeant
S30046 Private
S82981 Private
S82901 Private
W88615 Private (ex resident)
VFX96912 (ex resident)
SX34165 Corporal
S34784 rank unknown
S74860 Private
S2873 Private
S485 Private
SX22551 (S26262) Sergeant
SX14846 Craftsman
SX34165 Corporal
SX9840 Captain
SX815 Private
SF113460 Private
S161, Major, Area Camp Staff, Katherine, NT
SX623 Private
SX30001 Lance Sergeant
S85493 Private
SX4617 Private
SX15587 Private
SX11897 Private
SX22796 Sapper
S41951 Private
SX5218 Private
SX29517 Private
S65098 Sergeant AWAS
SF113444 Private
S85392 Private, 8 Bn Volunteer
Defence Corps
S26230 and SX16804 Lance Corporal
SX21128 Private
SX14862 Trooper 2/4th Armoured Regiment
SX5217 Private
SX7576 Warrant Officer Class 1
S2804 Corporal, 33 Garrison Battalion

World War II


Royal Australian Air Force

Around 32 residents of Monash enlisted in the Royal Australian Air Force
(R.A.A.F.) during World War II. Many transferred from the army to serve in the
air force. Two died on active service.
Barry, Patrick J.

154869 Leading Aircraftman

(from Murray Bridge)
Barry, Terence F.
121597 Leading Aircraftman
Brown, Norman
442519 Sergeant, Warrant Officer?
Cook, Ronald J. C.
154796 Aircraftman
Dermody, Eric J.
153454 Leading Aircraftman
Gainsborough, Thomas B. 26899 Corporal
Hallam, Constance G.
111536 Aircraftwoman
Hallam, E. Vernon
442614 Warrant Officer
Harris, Victor L.
27846 Corporal
Harvey, Alison
107178 Aircraftwoman WAAAF
Harwood, Howard D.
27086 Leading Aircraftman
Higgs, Reginald
140716 Leading Aircraftman
Horvat, Ludowit H.
48642 Flying Officer
Jenkins, Garry F.
27626 Corporal
King, Kenneth L.
417307 Flight Sergeant
McLaren, Neil V.
417103 Flight Lieutenant
Maddern, Laurice H.
48658 Sergeant RAAF HQ
March, Harry H.
26778 Sergeant
Morris, Dickson G.
437437 Warrant Officer
Moss, Edwin C.
154803 Aircraftman 1
Muller, Frank E.
405640 Warrant Officer
Nicholas, John W.
Nielsen, Darcy
417757 Pilot Officer
OCallaghan, John W.
443130 Leading Aircraftman
Rowan, Malcolm C.
140672 Leading Aircraftman
Sawtell, Arthur H.
417521 Flight Sergeant
Smith, George E.
26977 Corporal
Smith, Laurie
442946 Leading Aircraftman
Sonntag, Ray
153449 Leading Aircraftman
Teasdale, Ronald S.
443055 Aircraftman
Whitfield, I. James
154889 Leading Aircraftman
Worman, Harry B.
417438 Pilot Officer

Royal Australian Navy

Three Monash residents served in the R.A.N. during World War II.
Browne, David J. H.
Horton, John B.
Smith, Vernon S.

Womens Land Army

Bollenhagen, Barbara J.

PA5104 Able Seaman

PA3494 Signalman (on loan to R.N. in 1945).


World War II

Herb Maddocks, Kurt Feige, Alan Harvey, Bill Webber, Alan Jury and Joe
The Mail (Adelaide), 17 May 1941. (Grant Telfer collection).

Monash School honour roll, photographed 24 Feb 2005, authors collection.



The Advertiser, News Limited, (various).
Berri Community News, Berri War Memorial Community Centre Incorporated,
(1951-Apr 1962).
The Berri News, incorporating the Berri Community News, (May 1962- Jan
Berri: Hub of the Upper Murray. Compiled by Mrs. Lochee M. Andison for the
Berri Branch of the S.A. CWA. Published by Advertiser Printing Office (1953).
Child of the Valley, Peg Mortimer, (1996).
The Chronicle, (various).
Ian Sando memoirs, unpublished.
Irrigation Royal Commission, South Australia House of Assembly, (Oct 1925).
The life and times of Mollie Sando (nee McCauley), unpublished (circa 2003).
Monash Primary School 75th Jubilee pupils list, 1920-1995, (1995).
Murray Pioneer (various).
Reginald Telfer memoirs, unpublished.
River Reflections, Berri the 75 years from 1911 to 1986. Compiled and
published by the Berri Jubilee Historical Committee, (1986).
Silent Voices - the story of the 10th Battalion, Robert Kearney, (2005).
The Sunday Mail, (various).
The AIF project, University of New South Wales.
Australian War Memorial (AWM).
Barmera Community Library.
Berri Community Library.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC).
Monash Primary School.
National Archives of Australia (NAA).
State Archives of South Australia.
South Australian Genealogical and Heraldry Association (SAGHS).
State Library of South Australia (SLSA).


Index of family names

Index of family names

Adams .................................. 191
Affleck ..................................... 79
Andary .................................. 114
Attree ...................................... 81
Baker .............................204, 209
Baldock ................................. 165
Barry20, 44, 64, 116, 148, 189, 209,
Beinke ...........................101, 107
Beriman14, 18, 20, 22, 57, 79, 148,
149, 161, 189
Bertram ................................... 65
Bigg20, 54, 71, 116, 119, 120, 121,
127, 128, 144, 151, 152, 160, 173,
188, 198
Blades .................................. 128
Bollenhagen15, 47, 54, 116, 127,
128, 153, 160, 165, 188, 189, 200,
Bottrill20, 47, 119, 120, 121, 126,
148, 149, 153, 188, 198
Bradley ................................. 209
Brand ...................................... 75
Braunack .............................. 114
Brown54, 97, 100, 120, 127, 148,
153, 188, 209, 211
Browne ................................. 211
Cahill ...................................... 75
Cameron ............................... 154
Campbell .............................. 191
Carlyon ..............................47, 81
Chittleborough ........................ 75
Cinc ...............................114, 156
Clancy .............................32, 192
Clark ......................128, 190, 191
Cocks ............................129, 190
Cook47, 54, 98, 116, 174, 192, 200,
Cornwall.................204, 209, 212
Cox ....................................... 116
Cross ...............................16, 209
Crossing ................................. 54
Dalby ...................................... 75
Davis ...................................... 76
de Grancy ..........................84, 88
Deex ..........................20, 47, 189
Delphin ................................. 106
Dermody ................129, 209, 211
Dixon .................................... 126

Doorman ............................... 153

Dutton ................................... 128
Dwyer .............. 23, 126, 190, 210
Dyer97, 116, 126, 146, 148, 149,
154, 164, 191
Earl ....................................... 192
Elleway ................. 124, 129, 190
Ellis13, 54, 84, 127, 153, 165, 188,
192, 209
Evans .............. 47, 116, 153, 192
Feige ..... 144, 151, 192, 209, 212
Ferguson ......................... 32, 189
Fewster ................................. 128
Fiebig ...................................... 84
Fisher47, 72, 116, 153, 166, 191,
Foster .............................. 45, 190
Franklin ..................... 97, 98, 100
Frick .. 55, 56, 124, 127, 153, 209
Frisic ..................................... 130
Fundak54, 122, 125, 129, 130, 156,
191, 192
Fus ........................................ 156
Fuss ...................................... 153
Gainsborough16, 20, 107, 153, 188,
190, 211
Gale .......... 15, 16, 123, 152, 190
Galloway ............................... 130
Golledge54, 80, 81, 114, 151, 188
Goodrich ................................. 73
Green .............................. 83, 188
Grigic ...................................... 84
Hackett ................ 32, 44, 97, 189
Haigh ............................ 200, 201
Hall ........................................ 152
Hallam54, 74, 77, 84, 116, 152, 153,
166, 191, 211
Halliday ................................. 128
Halupka ......................... 151, 187
Hamood ........................ 125, 155
Harding54, 116, 127, 153, 160, 164,
169, 190, 192
Harris47, 106, 107, 116, 152, 153,
154, 170, 172, 174, 211
Harvey54, 80, 107, 153, 190, 191,
200, 209, 211, 212
Harwood........................ 189, 211
Heath .............................. 15, 190

Index of family names

Henwood19, 38, 69, 73, 106, 116,
118, 119, 123, 124, 125, 127, 128,
130, 143, 146, 148, 149, 179, 189,
Heward54, 85, 114, 152, 153, 190,
Higgs ....................... 75, 210, 211
Hill ......................................... 210
Hixon ................................. 62, 65
Hocking116, 119, 120, 121, 126,
192, 200, 201, 202, 209
Hoffmann .............................. 153
Holloway ............................... 210
Hood ............................. 204, 210
Horton ... 127, 129, 190, 198, 211
Horvat ........... 155, 156, 210, 211
Hoskin ..................... 55, 208, 210
Hunt30, 46, 59, 62, 71, 72, 119,
126, 128, 151, 179, 180, 210
Hunter ................................... 157
Hurst ............................... 23, 190
Inquist ................................... 124
Jantosik ................................. 156
Jellet ...................................... 192
Jenkins .................................. 211
Jennings ................................ 210
Johanson54, 55, 107, 116, 144,
148, 160, 173, 191, 198, 200, 201
Jones .................................... 129
Jury18, 20, 47, 55, 73, 112, 144,
146, 148, 149, 150, 151, 154, 160,
173, 188, 189, 198, 209, 210, 212
Kanizay ................................. 156
Keightly ................................. 127
Kelly .......................... 20, 47, 189
Kernot ............... 32, 47, 191, 202
King116, 153, 190, 205, 210, 211
Kuss99, 100, 102, 107, 111, 112,
Lehmann ......... 75, 151, 188, 190
Lobban .......................... 129, 154
Lock47, 75, 103, 105, 116, 128,
129, 152, 180, 188
Lowe ..................................... 190
Loxton ................................... 129
Luby ...................................... 116
Ludas .................................... 210
Luksa ............................ 156, 210
Maddern14, 55, 80, 116, 119, 120,
121, 129, 152, 153, 191, 208, 211
Maddocks124, 208, 209, 210, 212


March10, 16, 44, 46, 62, 116, 152,

170, 191, 211
Mason ....................................210
Massey ..........................107, 191
Matchett .................................210
Mau .......................................114
Mawby16, 27, 119, 190, 200, 202
May ................................208, 210
McAvenna...... 102, 103, 105, 116
McCreanor17, 18, 47, 71, 130, 144,
168, 189, 210
McDonald ................ 20, 148, 189
McGuire .................................151
McHugh ... 98, 100, 101, 119, 120
McIvor ..........................16, 81, 82
McLaren .. 47, 116, 120, 189, 211
McLean ..................................166
Millington ............... 116, 191, 210
Milne ......................................100
Minagall18, 20, 46, 143, 180, 189,
200, 202
Minnis .................... 119, 179, 180
Monroe ....................................18
Morgen .................. 114, 174, 175
Morison ..................................202
Mortimer55, 70, 118, 124, 126, 127,
148, 149, 151, 191, 198, 202, 210
Moss ..............................104, 188
Muller ...............................72, 125
Munro ..............................97, 146
Munroe 43, 45, 47, 144, 148, 189
Murphy ...................... 98, 99, 100
Mutton .............................55, 154
Najar ..............................130, 176
Nancarrow .........................16, 32
Neighbour ..............................155
Nelson ...................................190
Nelsson .........................151, 190
Nicholas73, 92, 124, 129, 190, 210,
Nicholls ....................................15
Nieding ..................................129
Nielsen54, 55, 106, 107, 116, 121,
122, 124, 151, 160, 210, 211
Nielson ..................................210
Nitschke .................................151
Nixon55, 68, 124, 126, 127, 192,
198, 200, 202, 208, 210
OCallaghan124, 127, 160, 190, 211
OMalley ................................128


Index of family names

Paddick ............ 72, 126, 205, 210

Parham ..........................126, 210
Partridge ........................144, 188
Paterson ............................... 148
Paxton .............................75, 127
Pearse .................................. 100
Pech ..................................... 175
Penna ................................... 124
Perry ..................................... 210
Phelps .............................20, 189
Pitman .................................. 100
Plew ...................................... 210
Polden .....................32, 189, 202
Polson .................................. 114
Pope ................................20, 188
Potts20, 47, 75, 80, 81, 98, 151, 189
Pryor ................................47, 190
Quinton ................................. 210
Radosevic ............................. 128
Ralph ............. 190, 198, 206, 210
Ranford ............................32, 191
Rasheed ............................... 155
Reed .................... 20, 32, 47, 189
Revell ................................... 154
Richardson ....................107, 126
Rix .................................192, 198
Roach ................................... 159
Robertson ............................. 188
Rowan40, 63, 81, 82, 151, 153, 180,
Russell ................. 47, 80, 81, 189
Sabol .............................129, 156
Sachse ................................. 128
Samaras ............................... 114
Sandeman ............................ 210
Sando38, 39, 47, 67, 80, 91, 113,
114, 116, 119, 169, 189, 199
Sawtell ........... 189, 206, 210, 211
Schinkel ................................ 114
Schulz ................................... 129
Shaughnessy .........119, 191, 202
Siladi ..................................... 156
Smith47, 104, 121, 125, 129, 152,
153, 188, 199, 210, 211
Snopek ..........................156, 210
Soderberg55, 107, 116, 153, 190,
Sonntag ......... 106, 154, 210, 211
Stivahtaris ............................. 151
Stokes .................................. 102

Strahan18, 20, 22, 28, 97, 101, 143,

146, 148, 150, 151, 160, 188, 202
Stratman ......... 55, 114, 153, 210
Strong ........................... 100, 115
Svetec ........................... 114, 156
Tassy ............ 116, 155, 156, 191
Taylor .............................. 66, 191
Teasdale ............... 191, 210, 211
Telfer5, 16, 32, 55, 56, 62, 71, 91,
93, 114, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136,
137, 138, 139, 152, 153, 164, 169,
191, 209, 212
Thamm .................................... 47
Thiele .................................... 155
Thomas18, 20, 47, 55, 69, 74, 126,
144, 189, 210, 211
Thompson ............................. 188
Till ..................... 58, 97, 100, 111
Tisler ..................................... 156
Toull ...................................... 127
Traeger ................. 116, 191, 192
Trenaman.............. 151, 188, 202
Trotman..................... 32, 93, 192
Tucker ............................... 28, 97
Tydeman ............... 192, 199, 202
Underwood............................ 191
van der Woude...................... 128
Vidovic .......................... 155, 156
Viney ..................................... 130
Vogan ................. 20, 47, 97, 189
Wade .................... 120, 128, 210
Wagenknecht .................. 55, 129
Wallace ................................. 124
Warnecke55, 124, 126, 127, 156,
Webb ...................................... 82
Webber32, 44, 55, 114, 128, 153,
209, 212
Whitehead ............................. 100
Whitelaw54, 55, 57, 116, 153, 160,
Whitfield ........................ 155, 211
Wiese .................................... 153
Williams................................. 124
Willis ......................... 20, 32, 188
Worman ........ 116, 206, 207, 211
Wright55, 89, 122, 154, 155, 172,
189, 192, 202, 208, 210
Wuttke ........................... 116, 164
Young ................... 100, 114, 117