Buried in Katoomba

The Story of Private John Parker

Veteran of The Great War

© John Low

Parker grave

John Parker lies in an unmarked grave,1 one of many in the cemetery at Katoomba. Untended, it is indistinguishable from the unoccupied plots nearby. His death was one of those small tragedies reported occasionally in the local press and arousing for a brief moment a flutter of community interest before fading from memory. Parker’s tale may well bear retelling. Continue reading “Buried in Katoomba”

Australia’s First Great War Memorial

© Graham Seal

The Anzacs were still fighting in the gullies of Gallipoli when, in October 1915, the Mount Hawthorn Progress Association formed a committee to build ‘Anzac Cottage’ (sometimes called ‘Anzac House’) in Kalgoorlie St, (No. 38) Mt Hawthorn, a developing suburb 5 kilometres north of Perth. The Association wanted to perpetuate the then very new name ‘Anzac’ and build a monument that would be useful, providing ‘a home for a wounded soldier who took part in the famous landing’. Continue reading “Australia’s First Great War Memorial”

Early Settlers of Castlereagh

© Jim Low

On Easter Monday this year I went looking for the Church of England Cemetery at Castlereagh, New South Wales. From Penrith, Castlereagh Road spears across the once fertile Nepean River flats that were divided into family farms by the first government land grants. These grants were given to former convicts and free settlers in the hope that their agricultural pursuits would provide food for the struggling, infant colony of New South Wales. Many of these early farmers are buried in the cemetery I was going to find. Continue reading “Early Settlers of Castlereagh”