Vale Edward (Ted) Brennan 1935-2014

Edward (Ted) Brennan 1935-2014 (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Edward (Ted) Brennan 1935-2014 (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

This month we were saddened to hear of the passing of Ted Brennan on the 13 April 2014.

Edward (Ted) Brennan was born on 30 November 1935, and during his years at the Newcastle University College (precursor to the University of Newcastle) in the early 1950s, was one of its key student leaders and activists.

Ted Brennan's First Day At University, 1952. (l-r) Unidentified, 'Blue' Cunningham, Terry Piggott, [?] Watson and Ted Brennan. [Photo Credit: Ted Brennan Published in Blood and Bandages A History of the University of Newcastle Sports Union, 1996]

Ted Brennan’s First Day At University, 1952. (l-r) Unidentified, ‘Blue’ Cunningham, Terry Piggott, [?] Watson and Ted Brennan. [Photo Credit: Ted Brennan Published in Blood and Bandages A History of the University of Newcastle Sports Union, 1996 (Page 3]

He was a also a core member of the Newcastle University College Students Association (NUCSA), first appearing in the official minutes as one of two ‘guests’ on the 22 July 1954. By the next meeting on the 21 August 1954 he was an active mover of NUCSA business. He would later to be made an Honorary Life Member.

Honorary Life Membership for Ted Brennan "in view of his outstanding contributions to that body's activities overa number of years" - From NUCSA Minutes Vol 2, 8th Council 1959-1960 Archives Location B10947)

NUCSA Honorary Life Membership for Ted Brennan “in view of his outstanding contributions to that body’s activities over a number of years” – From NUCSA Annual General Meeting Minutes 4th August 1960, in Volume 2, 8th Council 1959-1960 (Archives Location B10947)

He campaigned among the mining workers right across the Hunter district urging them to support autonomy for the University of Newcastle in the early 1960s. This was probably enabled through the networks of his father, Michael (Mickey) Brennan, a prominent coalfields trade unionist during the 1930’s and 1940’s.

Ted Brennan as one of the Newcastle representatives at the National Union of University Students in Melbourne (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Ted Brennan (Hon. Secretary, NUSCA) and Adrian Nelmes (President, NUCSA) with the Newcastle representatives at the annual conference of the National Union of Australian University Students (NUAUS) in Hobart [1960] – “It must have been a lively one” – Pam (l-r Paul Walmsley, Ted Brennan, Adrian Nelmes, Katrina Sutton) (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Torch Procession to Newcastle Town Hall 1961

Torch Procession to Newcastle Town Hall 1961

According to Don Wright’s Looking Back A History of the University of Newcastle (1994) p.78:

“On the night of 12 April 1961 they held a freedom march from the Tighes Hill site to the City Hall (about five kilometres) to take part in a public meeting organised by the Lord Mayors Committee. Estimates of the numbers involved vary from fifty to 200. Led by the mercurial Godfrey Tanner, later Professor of Classics, they marched the distance shouting, cheering, waving flaming torches and banners carrying slogans like Burn Baxters Empire, Big Baxter is Watching You, Baxters Bargain Basement, Let Newcastle Fiddle while Baxter Burns. Outside the City Hall, they set alight their banners and tossed them into a blazing heap before moving inside to join 250 of Newcastles more sober citizens in a public meeting to demand immediate autonomy.”

Wright continues on p.79:

“Ted Brennan and the other student leaders argued their case to the workers of the district, addressing pit-head meetings and otherwise trying to convince workers to support autonomy in the interests of their children. In July (1961) the students took their protest to Sydney. One hundred Newcastle students and their Sydney supporters marched along Macquarie Street to present to the Minister for Education, Ern Wetherell, a petition in favour of autonomy signed by 32,000 Newcastle citizens. Wetherell told them that autonomy was ‘everyone’s ultimate aim’ but the timing could not be decided until the Price Committee had reported, nor could it come before the move to Shortland. Work could not begin there until 1964 for financial reasons.”

Opus-Tharunka 27 July 1961

Opus-Tharunka 27 July 1961

Click to see FULL COPY OF OPUS THARUNKA 27 JULY 1961 (26MB PDF FILE)

Edward Brennan graduated on Friday 13 April 1962 with a Bachelor of Engineering from the Department of Applied Geology, Newcastle University College, under the auspices, at the time, of the University of New South Wales.

Ted Brennan at Graduation (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Ted Brennan being presented with his degree by  Professor M. Chaikin at Graduation Ceremony (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

 

Ted Brennan at Graduation (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Ted Brennan, Mr David Lyon McLarty, Engineer and Director of the NSW State Dockyard, and Adrian Nelmes.  (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

 

First 'rag' (or kind of muckup day), Ted Brennan in pram and Harold Boffinger on penny farthing. (Photo: Ted Brennan)

First ‘rag’ (or kind of early NUC muckup day), Ted Brennan in on the extreme left of the photo in the pram. (Photo: Ted Brennan)

 

Autonomy was santified with a bonfire described in Don Wright’s Looking Back A History of the University of Newcastle (1994) p.89:

“On 1 January 1965 there was a bonfire on the Shortland site, about where the Great Hall now stands. It was presided over by Mike Nelson, a well-respected student, and by Godfrey Tanner, forever totally immersed in the affairs of the collegium. The joint presidency of the event was a symbol of the well-attested camaraderie of staff and students throughout their days of struggle and adversity, while the flames of the fire symbolised both the joy in the attainment of a long sought destiny and also that confidence in the future which Auchmuty had communicated as he taught all to believe that they were privileged to lay the foundations for a centre of learning whose enduring influence would increase with the passing generations.”

Ted at the University Ball (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Ted at the University Ball (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

We contacted Ted Brennan back in 2002, because we were very interested in getting his side of the University’s history. This would include his recollections of the early history of the University College up to the gaining of Autonomy in 1965. He was very interested in recording his knowledge of the early history, since,  in his opinion,  much that had been written was “a fictional version dream’t up by (Professor J.J. ) Auchmunty aimed at enhancing his own stature.”

Ted Brennan with Helen Featherstone at the Newcastle University College's first cabaret. (Photo: Ted Brennan)

Ted Brennan with Helen Featherstone at the Newcastle University College’s first cabaret. (Photo: Ted Brennan)

He believed that there were extensive records dating back to NUCSA (i.e., The Newcastle University College Students’ Association) foundation in 1954 but that since 1964, most had been destroyed in the move to the Shortland SRC Office. (Email correspondence 2002). Fortunately, contrary to that belief, the NUCSA  Council Minutes did survive, and are very comprehensive, dating from its first annual meeting held on the 29th April 1953.

First Volume of Bound Minutes of the Newcastle University College Students' Association. (UON Archives: B10946)

First Volume of Bound Minutes of the Newcastle University College Students’ Association. (UON Archives: B10946)

Unfortunately by 2012, Ted’s health had deteriorated to such an extent that he couldn’t be too far away from his local hospital, making a trip down to Newcastle an impossibility. Our plan B in attempting to fly a researcher up to Queensland to interview him also fell through. So, our hope to record everything he had wanted to tell us about the student role in the gaining of autonomy and the establishment of the University of Newcastle never came to fruition.

Ted playing the "pretend" piano at the Throsby Creek Regatta, circa 1960. (Photo: Ted Brennan)

Ted playing the “pretend” piano at the Throsby Creek Regatta, circa 1960. (Photo: Ted Brennan)

 

Ted Brennan at the piano at the Throsby Regatta, circa 1960s. "The fellow facing him is Bill Jonas. I don't know who the others are." - Pam Brennan (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Original photograph of Ted Brennan at the piano at the Throsby Regatta, circa 1960s. “The fellow facing him is Bill Jonas. I don’t know who the others are.” – Pam Brennan (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

 

Edward (Ted) Brennan 1935-2014 Obituary (Courtesy of Journal of the Australian Institute Of Mining and Metallurgy)

Edward (Ted) Brennan 1935-2014 Obituary (Courtesy of Journal of the Australian Institute Of Mining and Metallurgy)

 

Ted Brennan in Christmas Island, 1966. "He was there as the first geologist for the British Phosphate Commissioners. We spent about three years there." - Pam Brennan (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

Ted Brennan in Christmas Island, 1966. “He was there as the first geologist for the British Phosphate Commissioners. We spent about three years there.” – Pam Brennan (Photo: Courtesy of Pam Brennan & Family)

We contacted Dr Bernie Curran to relay the sad news. Over the phone he began telling us all about Ted; his involvement in the making of the Blood and Bandages A History of the University of Newcastle Sports Union 1996; being a student leader; his close association with Godfrey Tanner; his playing the ‘pretend’ piano with a ‘pretend’ band on one of the makeshift rafts in the Throsby regatta, (much before his time), and, how wonderful it is that the Godfrey Tanner Bar, the Brennan Room and the Derkenne Courtyard are all in close proximity to one another within the physical architectural space of the UON Student Union. It is a lasting remembrance and acknowledgement of the legacy of these three men and their services to enhance the quality of life of the future students of the University of Newcastle.

If you have any recollections, thoughts or comments that you wish to share, please do not hesitate to contact us on archives@newcastle.edu.au or leave a comment below.

On behalf of the University of Newcastle, we wish to convey our sincere condolences to Ted Brennan’s wife, Pam Brennan, and to his family, friends and colleagues. We also thank Adrian Nelmes for taking the time to notify us of his passing.

Kind Regards,

Gionni Di Gravio
University Archivist

Time Tunnel: Auchmuty and Huxley Libraries in the 1990s

timetunnel-text
A VHS Video tape containing footage of student life in and around the Auchmuty and Huxley Libraries during the 1990s has surfaced.

The original VHS Tape with time code.

The original VHS Tape “Library Footage with Timecode”.

In the films can be seen Auchmuty and Huxley staff members carrying out their duties, as well as students and academics using the computer and library resources. How many people can you recognise?

Donation Honours Memory of Griffith Duncan

I Look Ahead - Towards A Better World (University of Newcastle and Newcastle Teachers' College, later Newcastle College of Advanced Education Mottos)

I Look Ahead – Towards A Better World (University of Newcastle and Newcastle Teachers’ College, later Newcastle College of Advanced Education Mottos)

A small ceremony held in the University’s Auchmuty Library to mark the donation of a book to Cultural Collections has conjured memories of the legacy of one of the Hunter Region’s educational giants.

Griffith Duncan

The book was a presentation copy of the Poems and Plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930) awarded as the Charles Oliver Prize to a 16 year-old Griffith Duncan, “for Magazine Articles”  by the Headmaster of Maitland High School (Mr Charles H. Chrismas) on the 16th December 1930.

The poems and plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930)

The poems and plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930)

The poems and plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930)

The poems and plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930)

Charles Oliver Prize plate within The poems and plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930)

Charles Oliver Prize plate within The poems and plays of Oliver Goldsmith (1930)

This young man would go on to become foundation Principal of the Newcastle Teachers’ College, later incorporated as the Newcastle College of Advanced Education and Hunter Institute of Higher Education before it amalgamated with the University of Newcastle 1989. The book was donated by Mrs Pat Wilson, who along with her daughter Amanda, and friends Emeritus Professor John Hamilton and wife Alison handed the book over to Special Collections Librarian Lyn Keily and Mark Sutherland Associate Librarian (Research and Information Services).

Mrs Pat Wilson (in red) with daughter Amanda, presenting the book to Lyn Keily and Mark Sutherland (centre). Photo: Gregg Heathcote

Mrs Pat Wilson (in red) with daughter Amanda, presenting the book to Lyn Keily and Mark Sutherland (centre). Photo: Gregg Heathcote

The book had been passed on to Mrs Wilson by Griffith Duncan’s aunt, Annie Robson, now deceased. Mrs Wilson discussed the possibility to donate the book to the University’s Collections with her friends Emeritus Professor John Hamilton and wife Alison, which was accepted.

(l-r) Emeritus Professor John Hamilton, Alison Hamilton, Pat Wilson with daughter Amanda, Lyn Keily, Gionni Di Gravio)

(l-r) Emeritus Professor John Hamilton, Alison Hamilton, Pat Wilson with daughter Amanda, Lyn Keily, Gionni Di Gravio) Photo: Gregg Heathcote

As part of the occassion, a display of Newcastle Teachers’ College photo albums, as well as a recording of Huldha Turner speaking about the College days was played over a slide show of images of the 1949 Pioneer Session. This helped bring back memories of Griffith Duncan and his ongoing legacy and leadership in education to the Hunter Region and beyond.

Griffith Duncan Presentation and Slide Show of 1949 Pioneer Session Photographs

Griffith Duncan Presentation and Slide Show of 1949 Pioneer Session Photographs. Photo: Gregg Heathcote

 

The lasting impression he left on his students and staff has shaped their lives and the lives of all that followed. Huldah Turner summed it up in her parting address to Dr Douglas Huxley on the 4th March 1992:

 

“When I left the college in early 1967, we were still dreaming of our “permanent campus” and wondering if it was, after all, an unattainable pipe dream. However, in spite of our primitive campus those who knew the Union Street Experience claimed that it had camaraderie and a warm fierce loyalty unique in similar institutions. It had to be experienced to be understood.

This spirit was initiated and engendered by its Foundation Principal, Grif Duncan, a man of massive intellect, wide ranging cultural interests and infinite compassion.

He put students and staff before self and all who worked with him came to know his stature; unfaltering integrity, dedication to his college and profound understanding.

He loved his college. He was fiercely proud of it and he fought all the way for his better world.

The college motto of course was his:

“AD MELIOREM MUNDUM”
Towards a Better World

 

We thank Mrs Pat Wilson and family, as well as Emeritus Professor John Hamilton and wife Alison, for enabling this donation to the University of Newcastle. It has provided a humble reminder of what we are all here to achieve. In these times when the University of Newcastle is seeking to find its distinctive path in a new and challenging global environment, we cannot think of a better and more simple goal for the University, combining its motto with that of  Griff Duncan’s Newcastle Teachers’ College, igniting the powerful Promethian myth that knowledge and education can break the bonds of an enslaved mind, and ignite an eternal flame of ongoing freedom and progress for the good:

“I Look Ahead Towards A Better World”

Gionni Di Gravio
University Archivist
12 August 2015

UON C50- PART 1 – ASPIRATIONS FOR A UNIVERSITY

group looking over Shortland grounds In 2015, the University of Newcastle celebrates 50 years.  The university has a rich history and the community has been the mainstay, instrumental in the many achievements and milestones. IDEA FOR A UNIVERSITY William Tyrrell, the first Anglican Bishop of Newcastle envisaged tertiary institutions in the Hunter region. On 31 January 1849 Tyrrell was installed at the Newcastle Pro-Cathedral. Although he lived at Morpeth, Christ Church in Newcastle was in his diocese and he advocated strongly for education and established the Church of England grammar school at Newcastle and other secondary schools. Tyrrell envisaged tertiary institutions in the Hunter region.

Bishop Tyrell

Bishop Tyrrell (1807-1879). Courtesy UON Library Cultural Collections

CHRIST CHURCH ncc

Newcastle Christ Church(1870s). Courtesy Hunter Photobank.

To invest in his dream he transported with him to New South Wales an extensive collection of books from England. This formed part of a collection of some 2,700 volumes from St. John’s College Morpeth, generously donated by the Anglican Diocese of Newcastle to the University, and includes editions of major theological and philosophical works printed in the 16th-18th centuries, named the Morpeth Collection. At least half the Collection originally belonged to William Tyrrell, the first Anglican Bishop of Newcastle, who was appointed to the Diocese in 1847. The oldest book held in the Library is found in this collection, namely, Eusebius’ Ecclesiasticae Historiae printed in Paris in 1544. The University of Newcastle is really older than 50 years. The origins of the University of Newcastle can be traced back to the establishment of the Newcastle University College at the Newcastle Technical College site on 3 December 1951 and the Newcastle Teachers’ College, which started in 1949.  Tyrrell’s vision for a University did not come to fruition during the nineteenth century. It was not until the 1930s that the idea of a university north of Sydney was debated, and the discussion was mostly around where in rural NSW it should be built.  The favoured option was Armidale and the New England University College was established in 1938. During this time it was also recommended that the status of technical colleges in Sydney and Newcastle be raised to become Institutes of Technology.  A small group in Newcastle were in support of an Institute of Technology and lobbied government officials, however there were some, such as the Newcastle University Committee who were threatened by this, one of its members the Medical Superintendent of the Newcastle Hospital Dr McCaffrey spoke out about the need for a medical school in Newcastle, believing that a university could be created on the renowned Newcastle Hospital. There were several attempts by the University of Technology to have technical classes in Newcastle, however these failed during the early 1950s. What did succeed was the establishment of the Newcastle Teacher’s College.  Some continued to lobby authorities for a new university to be built, teaching mostly ‘liberal’ subjects. Several decades past trying to sort out Newcastle’s educational ‘problems’, with many people still firm on the idea of a tertiary institution that was an institute of technology.

staff teachers college 1957

Newcastle University College, 1957, Department of Arts. Courtesy UON Library Cultural Collections.

ASPIRATIONS FOR A UNIVERSITY Early 1951 Harry Eddy from Sydney University supported locals, including Mabel Whiley, Tom Farrell, Reginald Ellis, Griffith Duncan and Max Pilgram to form a group to further advance the idea of a university in Newcastle.  This group kept the momentum going until the Newcastle University Establishment Group (NUEG) was formed. Many members of the former group become part of NUEG, others involved were H Hollis and HV Jackson, as well as Anglican Bishop of Newcastle F de Witt Batty and Alderman Frank Purdue. Ellis was President of the NUEG, having a strong sense of community and resisting political pressure. He remained committed to the cause.  The NUEG worked hard to convince the wider community that a university at Newcastle was a positive move.   The group handed a petition to government officials showing support for a university, the response was a request for plans to be submitted. This required support of the professional architects and the Master Builders association and other local architects came to the rescue to produce properly drawn plans. In 1951 the University of Technology resolved to open a Newcastle Branch using the existing Newcastle Technical College.  The Newcastle College of the New South Wales University of Technology was opened at a ceremony, the beginning of tertiary education in the Hunter region. The college was established under the authority of the then New South Wales University of Technology, which is now known as the University of New South Wales. In 1951 the Newcastle University College at the Newcastle Technical College offered limited degrees.

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Newcastle Technical College, Tighe’s Hill, NSW, Australia. Courtesy UON Library Cultural Collections.

At the time of its establishment the Newcastle University College had just five full-time students and study was restricted to engineering, mathematics and science.The first graduates were Class of 1953 – James Carr, Ernest Walpole and James Mackie. The first graduates of the Newcastle University College’s Department of Chemical Engineering. The UON also had early links with the University of New England, established in 1938, because when it was granted autonomy from the UNSW the New England University College was allowed to provide external studies in NSW, such external studies were taken up in Newcastle. James Auchmuty who later became Vice Chancellor of the UON asserted the right of Newcastle to undertake work under the agreement between Universities of Technology and New England, and that universities of technology should award their own Arts degree, even if students took examinations at the university at New England.  The Arts were eventually offered at the Newcastle University College and the relationship between New England and Newcastle ended after 1958. With the university presence secured and the demand from students established, the next push was for autonomy from what became in 1958 the University of NSW.  Supported by the Lord Mayor’s Committee for the Establishment of an Autonomous University of Newcastle, Auchmuty built up senior staff and facilities to demonstrate readiness for autonomy. In 1957 the first degrees in Arts were awarded, in 1958 the University of Technology changed its name to the University of New South Wales, and in 1962 the Council of Newcastle University College was established. Before autonomy was to take place, preparations and planning took place to secure a site of a new university for Newcastle. CALLAGHAN CAMPUS Callaghan campus was formally known as Shortland campus. Callaghan campus has a rich natural environment, which, together with its Indigenous heritage, has shaped the built environment and layout of the buildings over 140 hectares of natural bushland. Land for the proposed university at Shortland come from BHP in 1949, and was selected as the preferred site, with its proximity to BHP’s Central Research Labs seen as an asset.   Prior to this the area was part of a land grant of 2000 acres belonging to John Platt during in the 1820s. The first people on the land where the University of Newcastle was built belonged to the Pambalong clan of the Awabakal nation. Their country is known as Barrahineban “a bright place to live”, and the spirit of Birabahn the eaglehawk is the primary totem of the Awabakal people. There are extensive eucalyptus trees and wetlands in the area and to the Hunter River and Ash Island.

“The Pambalong including all the clans comprising the Awabakal people lived in a virtual paradise of plenty. They had the added rich resources of the swamp and wetland areas within their clan territory. Their already rich diet of the marine and marsupial variety was supplemented with mud-crabs, wild duck, waterfowl and an endless variety of other bird life. As already emphasised the Newcastle area is extremely fortunate with its written records and accounts of Awabakal cultural lifestyle. This is also significant with the Pambalong. Threlkeld gave written account of the Pambalong highlighting their numbers, various leaders and lifestyle.”  John Maynard ‘Whose Traditional Land’.

Here two tertiary education institutions would be built, the Newcastle College of Advanced Education and University of Newcastle. There were few building on or surrounding the site. By the 1960s moves to have a university campus established were well underway. The area was mostly bush land with a few humpies and sheds, probably left from the Depression years. A 93 year old gentleman describes the site where the university campus would be built :-

“I really didn’t think they’d do anything with that lantana-covered patch between the garbage dump and the swamps. But I suppose they just had to build a Uni there. It was such a waste to have Newcastle’s best pub stuck way out here with no-one to keep it open all night. Whoopee!… Some people don’t like the idea of knocking down all those trees and lantana bushes that screen us from swamp mosquitoes and city garbage dump smells, but I don’t suppose they’ll get used to it. I’m sure you study hardened Uni kids won’t mind a few mossies or swamp smells of abattoir sights. It’s worth it to have a pub and golf course next door” Local Resident speaks” – OPUS 1962

sketch of hut at Shortland

From Opus Magazine 1962. “Mud, Mush and Mosquitoes”. Sketch of hut at Shortland from original photograph by Paul Danks. Courtesy UON Library Cultural Collections.

During the early 1960s the community continued to fight for their own university. It was a time of freedom marches and campaigns on issues such as equal right, there was much anticipation for an autonomous university for Newcastle. Sources Maynard, J. Whose Traditional Land? Wright, D. (1992) Looking Back : A History of the University of Newcastle. The University of Newcastle: Callaghan. Our Univer-city: Recasting the city of Newcastle as a knowledge hub. http://www.newcastle.edu.au/about-uon/our-university/celebrate-50-years/our-univer-city Adapted from Cushing, N., Quinn, K., and McMillen, I.C. “Recasting the City of Newcastle as a Univer-city: The Journey from ‘Olde’ Newcastle-upon-Tyne to the New Silk Road”. In Teo, A.S.C. (Ed.). (2014). Univer-Cities volume II. Manuscript in preparation. University Archives held at UON Auchmuty Library Cultural Collections. UON Flicker https://www.flickr.com/photos/uon Information compiled by Dr Ann Hardy for the C50 Project on behalf of UON Library Cultural Collections June 2015. Also see Noble, Rod, ‘Trades Hall backed University’, Newcastle Herald, 19 June 2015.

Local Treasures: Early Surfest Photographs 1985-1988

Surfest - 25th November 1986 Newcastle (Australia) [Photo: Chris Patterson for Hannan Photography Courtesy of UoNCC]

Surfest – 25th November 1986 Newcastle (Australia) [Photo: Chris Patterson for Hannan Photography Courtesy of UoNCC]

Day Shift – 18/11/2014 – 02:10 PM
Presenter: Carol Duncan
Interviewees: Gionni Di Gravio, Archivist, University of Newcastle (Australia)

Gionni Di Gravio (Archivist) discuss the release of over 800 scanned colour and black and white negatives of the early Surfest events held on Newcastle Beach across the years 1985 to 1988. They are all sourced from a massive commercial photographic archive recently donated to the University of Newcastle (Australia).

Broadcast Notes:

Surfest ’85 (99 images)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/uon/sets/72157646902367064/

Surfest ’86 (456 images)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/uon/sets/72157649215677766/

Surfest ’87 (142 images)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/uon/sets/72157649316149282/

Surfest ’88 (128 images)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/uon/sets/72157649320214052/

 

A collection of over 800 photographs held in the University of Newcastle’s Archives has been released globally to assist in the celebrations currently underway to mark the 30th anniversary of the Surfest in February 2015.

The images, all scanned from original colour negatives, date from the inaugural Surfest bearing the date of ’26th November 1985′ up until 1988, taken at events held at Newcastle Beach, Australia.

Massive crowds at the inaugural Surfest '85 26th November 1985 (Photo: Chris Patterson for Hannan Photography Courtest of UoNCC)

Massive crowds at the inaugural Surfest ’85 26th November 1985 (Photo: Chris Patterson for Hannan Photography Courtest of UoNCC)

The images were shot by Chris Patterson and other photographers working for Hannan Photography, who were engaged to record the event by Peach Advertising on behalf of the Surfest sponsors B.H.P. (The Broken Hill Proprietary Company Ltd). Surfest was also known as “The BHP Steel International”.

Once the call came out from the Surfest Anniversary organisers for historic images, Chris contacted us, after learning that the entire Hannan photographic archive had been donated to the University’s Cultural Collections in the Auchmuty Library. He came in, and help tracked down the original 35mm colour negatives that he shot all those years ago. He also explained their numbering scheme which has been very helpful in sorting the massive collection.

The images were scanned from the original 35 mm colour negatives, at 3200 dpi using an Epson Perfection V700 Scanner. They comprised sheets labeled under the original numbering sequence of CN6858, CN7560, CN8162, CN8764 respectively. (CN=Colour Negative)

The original negatives are held in Cultural Collections at the Auchmuty Library, University of Newcastle (Australia).

People are welcome to use the images for study and personal research purposes. Please acknowledge them as “Courtesy of the Hannan Photography Archive, University of Newcastle (Australia)”

For commercial requests you must obtain permission by contacting <a href=”mailto:archives@newcastle.edu.au” rel=”nofollow”>Cultural Collections</a>.

If you are the subject of the images, or know the subject of the images, and have cultural or other reservations about the images being displayed on this website and would like to discuss this with us please contact <a href=”mailto:archives@newcastle.edu.au” rel=”nofollow”>Cultural Collections</a>.

If you have any further information or stories that come to mind after viewing the photographs, please leave a comment.

These images are provided free of charge to the global community thanks to the generosity of the donors (Don McCririck of Hannan Photography) and the Vera Deacon Regional History Fund.

If you wish to donate to the Vera Deacon Fund please download a form here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/21528529/veradeaconform.jpg

Further information on the forthcoming Surfest 30th Anniversary 2015 is here: http://www.surfest.com/

Local Treasures: Newcastle’s Public Infrastructure in 1829

Return of all the Buildings and Establishments at New Castle reported by Mr Rodd the Superintendent of Public Works As being the Property of Government shewing their present actual state etc. August 27th 1829 no. 147/143 (NRS 905, Letter No 32/4776 [4/2146] Courtesy of NSW State Records)

Return of all the Buildings and Establishments at New Castle reported by Mr Rodd the Superintendent of Public Works
As being the Property of Government shewing their present actual state etc. August 27th 1829 no. 147/143 (NRS 905, Letter No 32/4776 [4/2146] Courtesy of NSW State Records)

Day Shift – 18/02/2014 – 02:10 PM
Presenter: Carol Duncan
Interviewee: Dr Ann Hardy and Gionni Di Gravio, Archivist, University of Newcastle (Australia)

Gionni Di Gravio, Archivist of the University of Newcastle and Dr Ann Hardy discuss their recent trip to NSW State Records to photograph three bundles of hitherto lost documents of Newcastle in the late 1820s and early 1830s. The documents relate to an inventory of public buildings in the township that were being readied for what appears to have been the first privatisation prior to the Australian Agricultural Company take over of the Government Mines. They provide a digitised copy and transcription of one of these documents, and the importance of this information to the creation of the 3D early Newcastle model currently being constructed by artist Charles Martin for the University’s Coal River Working Party.

Broadcast Notes:

At the end of 2012, historian Rosemary Melville provided Gionni Di Gravio with a photocopy of an 1829 document entitled “Return of all the Buildings and Establishments at New Castle reported by Mr Rodd the Superintendent of Public Works As being the Property of Government shewing their present actual state etc. August 27th 1829 no. 147/143″
(NSW State Records – NRS 905, Letter No 32/4776 [4/2146])

The photocopy was very hard to read in places, so he asked his colleagues at NSW State Records to locate the original, in order to get a better copy. A couple of weeks ago they rang to say they were unable to locate the original, but found another, that was a copy, along with annotations. This was great news. But the very next day, they rang again to say that they not only relocated the original, but three bundles of files relating to it. Everyone was overjoyed. Many thanks to the staff of NSW State Records in Sydney especially Fiona Sullivan, Gail Davis and Chris Shergold. And thanks also Senior Archivist Janette Pelosi, whose previous “dream job” reading her way through the 1832 correspondence created the entry in the NSW State Records documentation which led her colleagues to locate the file.

NRS 905 - Letter No 32 - 4776 - [4-2146] bundle (Image courtesy of Fiona SullivanNSW State Records)

NRS 905 – Letter No 32 – 4776 – [4-2146] bundle (Image courtesy of Fiona Sullivan NSW State Records)

NRS 905, Letter No 32-4776 [4-2146] - Cover page of return (Image Courtesy of Fiona Sullivan, NSW State Records)

The full 1829 document along with transcription can be downloaded here:

Return of all the Buildings and Establishments at New Castle reported by Mr Rodd the Superintendent of Public Works As being the Property of Government shewing their present actual state etc. August 27th 1829 no. 147/143 with Transcription by Gionni Di Gravio (13MB PDF)

Descriptions of selected buildings and features located on the 1830 Armstrong Plan, and overlayed on Google Earth.

A selection of sites across the township of Newcastle on the 1830 Armstrong plan and overlayed in Google Earth

A selection of sites across the township of Newcastle on the 1830 Armstrong plan and overlayed in Google Earth

A selection of features and their descriptions, along with 3D virtual images provided by Charles Martin. More on Charles work can be found here:

Light house

Sir Thomas Mitchell's 1828 sketch rendered by Charles Martin 2013. Sir Thomas Mitchell’s 1828 sketch rendered by Charles Martin 2013.

Sir Thomas Mitchell’s 1828 sketch rendered by Charles Martin 2013.

Item No. 29

Where is it? Light House Situated on the Headland and South east of the Town

Who occupies it? Signal and Fire men

What condition is it in? This is an octagon weather boarded building designed after the Chinese style of architecture. The top part is perfectly weather proof. The ceiling of the lower floors all down owing to the rain finding its way in at the step which surrounds the building at the height of the lower story it not being covered by lead or copper but only with pitch which has melted away. The top mast of the Signal Staff is decayed and requires replacing. The Telegraph post is split and requires securing by means of two screw bolts. The platform of the Battery on which is six iron 12 Pounders mounted on old fashioned wooden garrison carriages requires, repairs as do also the carriages. The Guns, carriages, signal staff, Telegraph and Light House wants painting.

The Wharf

Sir Thomas Mitchell's 1828 sketch rendered by Charles Martin 2013. Newcastle Wharf and view up Watt Street rendered by Charles Martin 2013.

Sir Thomas Mitchell’s 1828 sketch rendered by Charles Martin 2013.
Newcastle Wharf and view up Watt Street rendered by Charles Martin 2013.

Item No.  34

Where is it? The Wharf [Where situate is not noted, but once stood at the extremity of Watt Street (formerly George Street)]. Now under the roundabout adjacent to Newcastle Railway Station.

What condition is it in? The Wharf is of Plank supported by Beams resting  upon Piles, which are  nearly eaten through by the worm  –  [100?] by 23 feet.  The steps of wood require to be renewed having decayed and quite dangerous.

 

The Watch House

Scene showing Watch House in centre, 3D rendered by Charles Martin

Scene showing Watch House in centre, 3D rendered by Charles Martin

Item No. 27

Where is it? Watch House

Who occupies it? Police and Bell man of the Public Works Department

What condition is it in? This Building 27 x 21 feet weather boarded with brick lined noggin consisting of two rooms and two cells for one of the latter requires repair at the back is a small octagon tower containing a Bell to summon the working parties some of the weather Boards of the Tower want replacing.

The Lumber Yard

Convict Lumber Yard rendered by Charles Martin 2013

Convict Lumber Yard rendered by Charles Martin 2013

Item No.  15 (should be 16)

Where is it? Lumber Yard situated at the north end of Watt St. and the East Side Newcastle Wharf

Who occupies it? Public Works Department

What condition is it in? This Yard is separated from that of the Prisoners Barracks by a high wooden fence on the east side, on the north side by a similar fence, on the west by a high brick wall rough cast.  Its various shops to the south side thus forming the yard which covers a space of ground 186 x 173 feet.  The Carpenters shed is 45 x 15feet and requires saddle boards the whole length and a few weatherboards replacing at the closed end.  The Blacksmiths shop is 70 x 30 feet of Brick and well constructed but requires new shingling entirely.  The Watchman of the Lumber Yard has a small brick lodge within the walls 12 ft. square at the entrance into the yard in good repair.  There is adjoining  a small tools house 9 x 6 feet and a lime shed 30 x 9 feet of logs in good repair.

What do we propose be done with it? I proposed partitioning off 25 feet from the west end of the Blacksmiths Shop for the purpose of making a store and two small rooms for the Superintendent and Clerk’s Offices.

The Gaol

Newcastle Goal, once overlooking Newcastle Ocean Baths rendered by Charles Martin 2013

Newcastle Goal, once overlooking Newcastle Ocean Baths rendered by Charles Martin 2013

Item No.  28

Where is it? Gaol is situated on the rising ground to the Eastward of the Town

Who occupies it? Criminal Prisoners and Debtors

What condition is it in? This Building is 87 x 37 feet of stone rough cast having two stories an entrance porch in which is two Gaolers rooms surrounded by a high brick wall rough cast the whole covering a space of ground 140 x 105 feet. Three rooms and ten [cells] on the ground floor and seven rooms above require some repairs viz some shingling new Iron bars to strong room ground floor. The inner wall is a crack indicating a settlement but of no great consequence some flags require relaying. There is a considerable crack and settlement in the outer brick wall at the north east corner, which ought to be supported at the angle by buttresses. The Gaoler complains of the Debtors escaping from the yard owing to the Cook house and Privy being situated too near the wall.

What do we propose be done with it? In the event of a future arrangement by which this Building should not be required as a Gaol it might be converted into a Military Barracks.

The Church

Christ Church and surrounding landscape 1818 (3D Art by Charles Martin)

Christ Church and surrounding landscape 1818 (3D Art by Charles Martin)

Item No.  36

Where is it? The Church

What condition is it in? A stone Building the outside Plastered. A Square tower at the East End, surrounded with a small shingled spire. At the West end circular. The roof over the circular end appears very much sunk. I should think the rafters had given way –  The tower spreads at the top 10 inches being split, and is much out of the perpendicular. There is a crack in the circular end and the Plastering is fallen from the outside of the west side of the Tower.

The Pier or Break Water

Macquarie Pier circa 1818 and under construction (3D Art by Charles Martin)

Macquarie Pier circa 1818 and under construction (3D Art by Charles Martin)

Item No.  33

Where is it? The Pier or Break water

What condition is it in? This is of Stone, it is raised too high for a Break water, and I conclude from this circumstance, was not contemplated for that purpose when undertaken. But rather as a Promenade to the Nobby – its being continued at its present height, would be very injudicious rendering it more liable to damage in stormy weather; it should not be more than 8 feet above high water mark, but it is now twelve feet and is higher at it termination that at the commencement ,which is also the [inverse?], since it should be lower  in the middle than the ends, by way of an inclined plane to facilitate the progress of the works.

The interior and exterior slopes are not sufficient. I do not consider these to be any natural obstacle to prevent the continuance of this work having taken the soundings immediately in the line of its directions as well as at some distance on each side of that line generally finding two fathoms, and in no case more than two and three quarters. –

In communication with Mr Livingstone the Master of the Lord Liverpool  Packet who has had the opportunity of I believeing some years experience and observation and also having had the benefit of the nautical experience – Lieutenants Caswell and Lieut. Wood both of the Royal Navy –  I concur most fully with them in opinion that it would be most advisable to continue the works for the good of the Harbour; The Channel into which is now rapidly filling up but would be most decidedly cleared by the force and direction given to the water, when the Boat Passage shall be stopped.

There is a probability of free stone upon Mr Platts property which I visited and inspected, close to the River side about six miles from Newcastle,  and I recommend it should be opened, having reason to believe good Building stone and flogging, might be got there a great desideratum for Newcastle, the stone being unfit for building though hardening under water –  In the event of a quarry being found it would be best for the upper part of the Break water to be built with it.

I apprehend Mr Platt would not object as it must greatly benefit his Property. An Overseer and ten men would make sufficient progress in uncovering it in a fortnight or three weeks to enable a better judgement to be formed of it.

 No 1 Windmill

Item No.  30

Where is it? No. 1 Windmill & House situated on the rising ground to the South West of the Town

Who occupies it? Mr Riley

What condition is it in? A Brick Mill rough cast circular 32 feet Diameter and 38 feet altitude. The sails and main shaft have been carried away but the materials for new sails are upon the premises. A new main shaft and driving wheel are already put up. A few shingles wanting and some of the bricks are much decayed. There is attached a brick noggin Cottage 48 x 13 feet almost down.

Gionni Di Gravio
University Archivist
18th February 2014

Newcastle’s First Graduates

Class of 1953 - James Carr, Ernest Walpole and James Mackie. The first graduates of the Department of Chemical Engineering.

Class of 1953 – James Carr, Ernest Walpole and James Mackie. The first graduates of the Newcastle University College’s Department of Chemical Engineering.

At a presentation held on the 16th May 2013, records and artefacts belonging to one of Newcastle’s first three University graduates was donated to University of Newcastle.

A collection of items belonging to the late James Carr was handed over to the Vice-Chancellor Professor Caroline McMillen by his son, John Carr. The presentation was timed for the 60th anniversary of the University College graduation ceremony held on the 16th May 1953.

Presentation 16 May 2013

Presentation 16 May 2013 (l-r Gionni Di Gravio, University Archivist, Teresa Chitty, Associate Librarian Research & Information Services, Professor Caroline McMillen, Vice-Chancellor, Belinda Carr, Bronwyn Carr and John Carr)

The Collection included photographs from the day in 1953, and from the 50th reunion celebrations for the Department of Chemical Engineering held in 2003, his degree, certificates, letters of congratulation, and the hood of his academic gown.

One of the more intriguing items was a canister containing a 16mm silent colour film of the procession to Newcastle Town Hall filmed by James Carr’s Father-in-Law.

Canister containing 16mm Colour Film of Procession to Newcastle Town Hall

Canister containing 16mm Colour Film of Procession to Newcastle Town Hall

James Carr was one of the first three graduate of the University in 1953, then known as the Newcastle University College of the New South Wales University of Technology.

James Eshott Carr (1921-2011)

Jim was born in Mayfield on 30 October 1921, the first child to Richard and Isabel Carr (nee Runcie) and lived at 4 Durham Street, where he was later joined by two more siblings, Mark and Jenny.

He was christened at the nearby St Andrews Anglican Church, educated at Mayfield East Public School and Newcastle Junior Boys High School where he obtained his Intermediate Certificate in 1936 and from there attended the Sydney Church of England Grammar School (Shore) in North Sydney as a boarder in Hodges House.  He obtained his Leaving Certificate in 1938 and returned home to Mayfield, attending the Newcastle Technical College at Tighes Hill (an offshoot of the Sydney Technical College) to study Chemical Engineering part time, while working at the BHP.

World War 2 interrupted his studies and he joined the Australian Military Forces in 1941 to 1946.  On his return from military service he resumed his part time studies and full time work at the BHP, gaining his ASTC in 1950 with a Diploma in Chemical Engineering with Credit.

The recently formed Newcastle College of the NSW University of Technology invited Jim to continue his studies in Chemical Engineering to obtain a degree, which he continued to do part time while working in the Chemical Laboratories at BHP.  He completed his course in 1952 and graduated a Bachelor of Science with Second Class Honours on 16 May 1953 at the age of 31.

Jim was keen to join the workforce and was successful in obtaining a job with the Australian Fertilisers Pty Ltd at Port Kembla in 1954.  The family moved firstly to Warrawong, then Port Kembla and a few years later into a new house on Mount Pleasant in Wollongong.  He was moved back to Newcastle in 1969 for a few years managing the Kooragang Island plant of Australian Fertilisers Pty Ltd and in 1973 to their head office in North Sydney.

Jim retired in 1981 after a rewarding career in the fertiliser industry, making practical use of his studies in chemical engineering.

Jim was very skilled with his hands and during his retirement years spent his time restoring antique furniture including teaching himself to rush chairs from library books on the subject.  Trout fishing, snow skiing and wine making were also retirement activities that occupied his time.

Jim passed away following complications from Alzheimer’s in 2011 at 89 years of age.

John R. Carr

Conferring of Degrees - 16th May 1953

Conferring of Degrees – 16th May 1953

The Newcastle University College of The New South Wales University of Technology Conferring of Degrees Newcastle Technical College Presentation of Diplomas 1953 [3.3MB]

or

The Newcastle University College of The New South Wales University of Technology Conferring of Degrees Newcastle Technical College Presentation of Diplomas 1953 (332KB PDF)

This year marked the sixtieth anniversary of the first graduation ceremony and the Carr family thought it would be fitting to mark the occasion by presenting a number of items that he kept from that ceremony.

James Carr, Ernest Walpole and James Mackie

James Carr, Ernest Walpole and James Mackie

James Carr receiving his degree at the Newcastle Town Hall before the Union Jack

James Carr receiving his degree at the Newcastle Town Hall before the Union Jack

Three graduands with their degrees

Three graduands with their degrees

The three reunited again in 2003

The three reunited again in 2003

Letter of congratulation from the Chamber of Manufactures  of New South Wales

Letter of congratulation from the Chamber of Manufactures of New South Wales

Letter of congratulations from W.E. Clegg Chairman Newcastle Technical Education District Council

Letter of congratulations from W.E. Clegg Chairman Newcastle Technical Education District Council

James Carr Bachelor of Science Second Class Honours 16th May 1953

James Carr Bachelor of Science Second Class Honours 16th May 1953

James Carr Sydney Technical College Diploma 30th December 1950

James Carr Sydney Technical College Diploma 30th December 1950

Gionni Di Gravio
University Archivist

Reconstructing Victorian Newcastle – 6 November 2012 – 9 December 2012

Scan this image with LAYAR

The forthcoming Exhibition Reconstructing Victorian Newcastle will be launched at the Newcastle Museum and run from the 6 November 2012 – 9 December 2012.

http://www.newcastlemuseum.com.au/exhibitions/special-exhibitions/reconstructing-victorian-newcastle/reconstructing-victorian-newcastle

It features the work of Dr Tessa Morrison and her team of App developers working on the Snowball glass negatives. Dr Morrison is a senior lecturer and Research Fellow in Architectural History in the University’s School of Architecture and Built Environment. Mr Russell Rigby, from Geology and a member of the University’s Coal River Working Party assisted in the geo-referencing amd mapping of hundreds of the University’s Ralph Snowball images. See: http://www.flickr.com/photos/uon/collections/72157629857677544/

If you have a smartphone, iphone or ipad, download a free app from the app store called Layar. Nicholas Foulcher (the IT student and app developer working with Dr Morrison) sent through some brief instructions yesterday through twitter.

“Reconstructing Victorian Newcastle App is Live! Download Layar for Free and scan this image to try before November 6th! pic.twitter.com/0UZBYFJE”

Once the app is installed on your phone, use the app to scan the test image above to try out the program.

Gionni Di Gravio
University Archivist

Local Treasures – The Newcastle Narrative

Capturing Time: Panoramas of old Australia by Edwin Barnard

Day Shift – 21/08/2012 – 02:10 PM
Presenter: Carol Duncan
Interviewee: Gionni Di Gravio, Archivist, Newcastle University

University of Newcastle Archivist Gionni Di Gravio discusses a number of recent publications, cyber projects and TV shows that are now starting to place Newcastle and its narrative history on the National and International stage,  with particular reference to the recent book yet to be published by the National Library of Australia entitled Capturing Time Panoramas of old Australia by Edwin Barnard.

Broadcast Notes:

In 2010 we prepared a series of Newcastle panoramas for an exhibition in the University’s Cultural Collections in honour of NSW Surveyor General Sir Thomas Mitchell (see the Mitchell 1828 Exhibition). One of these panoramas was of Newcastle circa 1825, painted of the scenes all along George Street (now the present day Watt Street) by, who we believed at the time was Sophia Campbell, and now since has been attributed to Morpeth pioneer Edward Charles Close.

The researcher who alerted us to the separate images in the sketchbook as constituting a ‘panorama’ was Mr Mark Metrikas, and after we ordered all the digital images, we digitally joined them together. The result was the following:

Edward Charles Close – [Panorama of Newcastle] c.1825
Courtesy of the National Library of Australia
Click for the larger image

The Panorama above is constituted of the following paintings in Sketchbook of scenes of Sydney, Broken Bay, Newcastle and region, New South Wales, 1817-1840, (Courtesy of the National Library of Australia) once attributed to Sophia Campbell, now Edward Charles Close, 1790-1866 (Thanks to Mark Metrikas for identifying this find)

The individual paintings that make up this Panorama from the Sketchbook are listed in order from left to right:

(1) Commandant’s house from in front of the old gaol, Newcastle, New South Wales, ca. 1828 [picture]
(2) Dwellings, fenced land and the windmill on the hill, Newcastle, New South Wales, ca. 1820 [picture]
(3) Barracks with Christ Church in the distance, Newcastle, New South Wales, ca. 1820 [picture]
(4) Dwellings and buildings in Newcastle, New South Wales, ca. 1820
(5) View over buildings towards the signal mast and Nobby Head, Newcastle, New South Wales, ca. 1820.

With collaboration from the University of Newcastle’s Coal River Working Party members Ann Hardy and Russell Rigby the panorama above is one of 23 historical panoramas published in a forthcoming book by Edwin Barnard.

Capturing Time Panoramas of old Australia by Edwin Barnard.
9780642277503, National Library of Australia, October 2012, 180pp, HB , 225x300mm
Info for ordering: http://www.newsouthbooks.com.au/isbn/9780642277503.htm

Tony Robinson’s Time Walks

In addition Newcastle will feature as one of the cities in the forthcoming TV Series from Tony Robinson’s Time Walks. Newcastle will be Episode 5 and the world premiere of the series starts on the History Channel Mondays at 7.30pm from September 10 to November 12. The Newcastle Episode 5 – Approximate Air Date is Monday 8th October 2012 at 7.30pm.

We worked closely with the producers and researchers for the show providing information from our blogs, Snowball images from our Flickr site and expertise from the Coal River Working Party.

More Info:http://www.historychannel.com.au/tv-shows/show-details.aspx?id=1061

Gionni Di Gravio