Hawkesbury Historical Society Newsletter

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					          No. 67 Hawkesbury Historical Society Newsletter ~ June 2006

            Historical Society
     Newsletter of the Hawkesbury Historical Society Inc
Address :
The Secretary, PO Box 293, Windsor 2756 NSW                                   The Supreme Sacrifice :
Telephone : 02 4572 3007                                               Captain William Bowman Douglas
Aim : Hawkesbury Historical Society aims to encourage &                                      by Michelle Nichols
preserve the history of the Hawkesbury
Meetings held : 4th Thursday of alternate months, 7.30-10pm in                                             Richmond Uniting Church
the Tebbutt Room, Hawkesbury Central Library, 300 George                                                   recently      donated       a
Street, Windsor.                                                                                           photograph      of  Captain
Open to : People interested in the preservation of the history of                                          William Bowman Douglas
the Hawkesbury, new members welcome.                                                                       to the Hawkesbury City
HAWKESBURY HISTORICAL SOCIETY                                                                              Council Library Local Studies
Patron: Ted Books                                                                                          Collection. A memorial to
                                                                                                           this unfortunate soldier also
Office Bearers 2005/2006                                                                                   adorns the wall of the
President: Dr Rex Stubbs OAM                                                                               church interior. The plaque
Snr Vice President: Graham Clayton                                                                         in the church, reads:
Vice President: Ian Jack
Secretary: Judy Newland                                                             "IN LOVING MEMORY OF
Treasurer: Kath Wilkins                                                       CAPT. WILLIAM BOWMAN DOUGLAS
Museum Curator: Rebecca Turnbull                                                          A COY 3rd Batt.
Assistant Curator: Jan Barkley Jack                                                 1st INF. BRIGADE A.I.E.F.
                                                                                WHO DIED ON THE 5TH MAY 1915
Museum Archivist: Lucy Sullivan                                                      ON THE H.M.S. GASCON
Publicity Officer: Marilyn Mercer                                        FROM WOUNDS RECEIVED AT GALLIPOLI AGED 33
Social Co-ordinator: Dudley Mercer                                                            YEARS
Newsletter Editor: Michelle Nichols OAM                                            THE SUPREME SACRIFICE
                                                                              ERECTED BY HIS SORROWING WIFE"
Web Administrator: Alan Aldrich
Committee: Erin Kuch, Carol Carruthers
                                                                    As a member of this congregation for a number of
Museum Committee: Rebecca Turnbull, Judy Newland, Kath
                                                                    years, I have often pondered about the
Wilkins, Alan Aldrich, Marilyn Mercer, Erin Kuch & Lucy Sullivan
                                                                    circumstances of the death of this soldier and after
Publications Committee: Michelle Nichols, Ian Jack, Jan             viewing his image thought it appropriate to find out
Barkley Jack, Judy Newland, Alan Aldrich & Graham Clayton           some more information about him.
Heritage Festival Committee: Rebecca Turnbull, Jan Barkley
Jack, Marilyn Mercer, Carol Carruthers & Graham Clayton             William Bowman Douglas was born on the 17 Sep
                                                                    18811 in Richmond. His parents were George
                                                                    Douglas 1834-1908 who had arrived from Ireland
     2006 DATES FOR YOUR DIARY                                      as a boy & Sarah nee Roberts 1841-1926. Sarah
                                                                    was a grandaughter of the well-known family of
        All meetings commence at 7.30pm                             William Roberts who arrived on the 1st Fleet & his
                                                                    wife Kezia Brown. The family belonged to the St.
                     22 June 2006                                   Andrews Presbyterian Church in West Market
                                                                    Street, Richmond where George Douglas was a
                    24 August 2006                                  church elder. As a child he attended Sunday School
                 26 October 2006 AGM                                at St. Andrew’s and a teacher recalled “he was a
                                                                    quiet, well behaved, attentive boy”2 William
                                                                    attended Richmond Public School and then
                                                                    1 NSW BDM Index 18135/1881 & Service records W. B. Douglas NAA B2455
                                                                    2 Windsor & Richmond Gazette 6.8.1915

                                                        HAWKESBURY HISTORICAL SOCIETY NEWSLETTER (June 2006)                                      1
undertook     further   studies    at   Hawkesbury                                         Late in April 1915 Douglas was transported across
Agricultural College where he received a Diploma.                                          the Mediterranean Sea with thousands of Australian
He later became a farmer in the district. He grew to                                       & New Zealand forces and landed on a beach which
be a fine looking man, standing six feet tall, William                                     later was known as Anzac Cove, on the Turkey
then became interested in the military. He joined                                          coast. The British and French troops were to land
the 3rd Regiment on the 21 May 1905 as a second                                            further south. The catastrophe that begat the
lieutenant, and was promoted to first lieutenant on                                        ANZAC legend began on the 25 Apr 1915. The
the 19 May 1908. Aged 28 years, William married                                            Australians despite horrific casualties, managed to
on the 23 Oct 1909 at Granville to Ethel Illingworth.                                      command a small stronghold on the cliffs above the
Ethel was born 14 Jul 1882 at Springwood,                                                  beach. However the allies were unable to break
daughter of John & Frances. The Illingworth family                                         through the Turkish lines and nothings except huge
were from Penrith area & moved to the Richmond                                             losses were gained from this campaign on both
area in the 1890s. Following their marriage, William                                       sides. Lce-Cpl Beveridge from the Hawkesbury Ag
& Ethel had two sons, Horace Bowman born 17 Oct                                            College staff was also at Gallipoli on the 25th and
1912 & John Bowman 24 Sep 19143. Douglas lived                                             supplied some informative details, he indicated the
with his wife Ethel and family at Bowman's Farm,                                           terrain was “very rough country, rather like the Grose, steep &
Richmond, a property that was originally in the                                            scrubby” and they were “heavily shelled” and “became used to
Robert’s family.                                                                           the smell of blood & the sound of shells and explosive bullets” and
                                                                                           the dead bodies. When they advanced to the firing
In 1912 he was promoted to the rank of Captain,                                            line, there were no trenches and the men dug a
and appointed to the 41st (Blue Mountain) Infantry                                         cover for their heads, whilst the Turks advanced
being   attached    to   the    Windsor-Richmond                                           under machine gun fire. When there was a rush and
companies.4                                                                                bayonets were used, Beveridge was shot in the
                                                                                           foot. His letter reprinted in the local paper tells of
In 1914, following turmoil in Europe, Word War 1                                           how he had not slept for days and had nothing to
commenced. As Australia had strong ties to the                                             eat and only a pint of water. He wrote that at the
British Empire, Australia became part of the Great                                         time the tragedy, it all seemed to pass him by, as
War and soldiers all over the country heeded the                                           he was dealing with the events, the flies were more
call and joined up. Captain William Bowman                                                 annoying than the bullets. Beveridge writes of
Douglas heeded the call and joined up on the 3 Sep                                         reporting to Captain Douglas & advising him of the
1914. Some of the first men enlisting were given a                                         situation at the firing line.
public send off at Richmond in early September
1914. The soldiers marched through the town, let                                           Sadly, Captain Bowman Douglas was one of the
by the Mayor to a special dinner at the School of                                          8,100 Australian casualties as a result of Gallipoli.7
Arts. Local dignitaries made speeches with Major                                           Captain Douglas was shot in the lower abdomen on
Helsham & Captain Bowman Douglas responding to                                             the 3 May 1915. He was transferred to the hospital
the enthusiastic applause of the crowds. Douglas                                           ship “Gascon” where he died two days later. His
was reported in the local newspaper as receiving a                                         death was reported by the Medical Officer onboard
“great ovation” and made the prophetic statement                                           the ship. The battles that took place on this
“the flattering farewell quite unnerved him. As                                            peninsula became known as ‘Gallipoli’ and the stark
soldiers, they were simply doing their duty and did                                        tragedy of Gallipoli is well-known to most
not look for any fuss. He felt sure that in the event                                      Australians. Below is the Death record of Captain William
of any of them not returning from the war, the                                                                                Bowman Douglas from
people of Richmond would do the right thing by                                                                                his service records W.
those left behind.”5     Shortly after the farewell                                                                           B. Douglas NAA B2455.
celebration, the troops left for Sydney. Fortunately                                                                          The 41st Infantry
for Capt. Douglas he was able to visit home on a                                                                              “paid a heavy toll
week’s leave before being sent to the front.6 His                                                                             of war in the
eldest son was only 2 years old whilst his wife Ethel                                                                         engagement           at
had only just given birth a few weeks after he                                                                                the     Dardenelles,
joined up. Just prior to leaving Richmond, the                                                                                as all the officers
Captain stood in his uniform beside his wife and                                                                              of the battalion’s
held his baby son, only a few weeks old, whilst the                                                                           active list…serving
child was baptised in his local church. Tragically this                                                                       at the front, were
would be the last time he would see his family.                                                                               killed in action.”
Captain Douglas embarked at Sydney on the                                                                                     From the Windsor
“Euripides” on the 20 Oct 1914 and travelled by sea                                                                           &          Richmond
to the Mediterranean. Captain Bowman Douglas                                                                                  Company          were
accompanied by the 41st (Blue Mountain) Infantry,                                                                             Douglas & Lt. H.
which many local Hawkesbury soldiers were                                                                                     T. Watkins who
attached, travelled to training camps in Egypt. After                                                                         had also studied
several months of training, troops set out for the                                                                            at      Hawkesbury
Dardenelles to support a naval operation.                                                                                              Agricultural
                                                                                                                              College.      Captain
                                                                                                                              Burns was from
                                                                                                                              Penrith      &      Lt.
3 A rich inheritance Vol. 2 William Roberts & Kezi Brown Family Assoc.pp.359, 376          Smith from the Bathurst Co. Lt. Colonel John
4 Windsor & Richmond Gazette 28.5.1915                                                     Jackson Paine of Windsor, took over command of
5 Windsor & Richmond Gazette 11.9.1914
6 Windsor & Richmond Gazette 2.10.1914                                                     7 Gallipoli Australian War Memorial website Exact figure quoted is 8,141

                                                                                    HAWKESBURY HISTORICAL SOCIETY NEWSLETTER (June 2006)                                             2
the 41st Infantry. 8 Details of his death were wired
to Australia to his wife Ethel, listed as next of kin,                                              Reminiscences of George
on the 11 May. A memorial service was held for the
local community at the Richmond Presbyterian                                                                 Street
Church. The service was conducted by Rev Milne                                                                              by Carol Roberts
with assistance from Rev Dillon from St. Peter’s
Church of England & the Methodist Rev Reeve. The
large gathering joined with family and friends to                                                  Part 2: Kable to Suffolk Street – eastern side
mourn the sad loss.                                                                              On the opposite corner from McCoy’s is the Bank of NSW at No
                                                                                                 146 [now Westpac Bank]. This was the first branch of the Bank
Just days after the memorial service, Mrs Ethel
                                                                                                 of New South Wales, opened in 1858 in premises rented from Mr
Douglas received a telegram from Cairo dated 21
May from her husband containing the single word
                                                                                                 William McQuade, with Mr Nicholas Nugent as Manager. The
“well” This threw the family into emotional turmoil,                                             bank bought the property in 1886 and the building with the
wondering if their had been some type of error                                                   columns was erected in 1935. [The extensions were completed
about the Captain’s death, they contacted Colonel                                                in 1981.]12 Now we find the Commonwealth Bank which was
Guest who in turn, contacted the authorities who                                                 opened on these premises in 1936 with Mr R. Gibson as
investigated the matter. In the House of                                                         Manager.13
Representatives on the 27 May the Leader of the
Opposition, asked who was responsible for                                                        George’s Café is at No 158. George’s Café has an advertisement
reporting casualties and the incident of Captain                                                 in the local paper as “Windsor and Richmond caterers with a
Douglas was cited. Subsequent communications                                                     modern ballroom to let for weddings, parties, etc.”14 The
with both Cairo & Alexandria confirmed his death                                                 proprietor of George’s Café, has workers come out from Greece
although the “wire” was unexplained. It was                                                      and he provides board and lodging for them while they work in
established that the “report of death and of wounds                                              the café. Along a bit further there is a butcher shop. [St George
duly authenticated by signatures of responsible                                                  Bank now occupies this site.] Now, the next shop is Hancock’s
officers in every case.”9                                                                        Grocery Store [later Carlisle’s]. We’ll call in and see Ron
                                                                                                 Greentree and his brother, Stan, who work in Hancocks. R.B.
                                                                                         Left    Walker & Son are at No 172 near the Post Office [pictured
                                                                                                 below] they are auctioneers, real estate agents, stock & station
                                                                           The Captain’s         agents, insurance agents, life assurance agents, income tax
                                                                           widow erected
                                                                            the following
                                                                          memorial to her
                                                                           memory in the
                                                                            St. Andrew’s

The Captain’s name is also recorded on the Lone
Pine Memorial, at Gallipoli10 which commemorates
the thousands of ANZAC soldiers who have no                                                      agents, estate managers, valuers, agents for Flick & Company
known grave. Following her husband’s death, Emily                                                and travel agents.15 Robert Walker’s father, William, a solicitor,
and her family moved to Granville to reside,                                                     was the first accountant of the Government Savings Bank of New
possibly to be near her Mother. Her father, John                                                 South Wales which operated from 1871 in Walker’s offices,
Illingworth died in 1913, her mother died in 1928.                                               followed by his son, Robert.16
Ethel Douglas passed away on the 18 Sep 1959 at
Burleigh Heads, Qld & buried in Granville.11 Son                                                 Walker’s Travel Agency are the agents for a Bridge to Bridge
Horace 1912-1990 lived in Qld whilst John 1914-                                                  Tour – a river trip on Fridays, Sundays and Wednesdays on the
1990 lived in Sydney.                                                                            cruiser Sackville. Lunch on the trip is at Una Voce, the guest
                                                                                                 house at Lower Portland run by Bruce King. Morning and
At his memorial service in 1915 it was stated that
                                                                                                 afternoon tea is supplied on board and passengers re-join the
“he had a faith that he would return to his loved ones, that was not to be.
Although his presence was gone his name still lived, inscribed on the roll                       coach at Brooklyn at 5.30pm to travel to Hornsby Railway Station
of honour as one of the heroes of Australia who fought in the greatest                           and return to Windsor by train. The whole trip costs 23/-. Hunter
struggle for liberty in which the British Empire had ever been engaged.”                         & Eileen Smith [née Cody] run an Electrical Installation & Radio
                                                                                                 Service at No 174. Hunter Smith learnt his trade from my uncle,
Bibliography                                                                                     Bert Hornery, and in fact used to board with the family at No 92
Australian War Memorial website Hawkesbury
Heroes World War 1 Vol. 1, Rod & Wendy Gow & Val Birch (2001) / Leaders of
                                                                                                 George Street. And now we are right up to the beautiful Windsor
Anzacs website /Memories of War-Penrith Library                                  Post Office building at No 180, on the corner of George &                                                                 Fitzgerald Streets. Continuing our tour, we cross Fitzgerald

8 Windsor & Richmond Gazette 14.5.1915                                                           12 Hawkesbury Journey: Up the Windsor Road from Baulkham Hills, D. G. Bowd, 1986, p. 129
9 Cablegram, 3rd Ecelon, Alexandria 27.5.1915, Service records W. B. Douglas NAA B2455           13 Ibid, p. 130
10 Memorial Details, 6. Lone Pine Memorial, Gallipoli Memorial Panel 36 Source                   14 Windsor School of Arts Library Book Mark courtesy private collection Carol Roberts                                                                  15 Windsor & Richmond Gazette, 23 January 1952
11 Hawkesbury Pioneer Register Vol 1 (1994) Hawkesbury Family History Group                      16 Hawkesbury Journey p. 130

                                                                                          HAWKESBURY HISTORICAL SOCIETY NEWSLETTER (June 2006)                                              3
Street to Brian Stevens’ garage at No 186 where Mr Stevens                                         Pictured left [later
sells and services Austin cars and trucks. Brian Stevens also                                      Simmons Hardware,
sells Fyrside kerosene heaters and other brands of heaters and                                     now the Arabian
stoves. Then there is Bob Mayne’s Men’s & Boys’ Wear which                                         Horse Society of
opened at No 192 on 28 April 195217, next to Bushell’s Hire Car                                    Australia].
                                                                                                   You will see we have
[Allen Bushell bought the hire car service in 1946 from Denzels,                                   come as far as Taylors
of Windsor, with a friend, Bill Watts, after he returned from active                               Produce Co Pty Ltd at
service with the RAAF. The business had three hire cars and                                        No 242 [later Hall’s
charged fares from the time they left the office until they returned,                              Hardware,           now
as opposed to taxis which could only charge on the outward                                         Keegan’s Retravision],
journey. The hire cars were limited to travel no more than 20                                      then Noon’s Cordial
miles and this restriction was imposed by the Motor Transport                                      Factory       up     the
Association. However, on one occasion Allen did a job to                                           laneway. Then there
Melbourne for the Melbourne Cup for 60 return, for a man who                                       are the flats [which later became Windsor Music House, then an
had won a large sum of money at the races. Another restriction                                     antique shop], Mrs Shirley Douglass’ milk bar [previously owned
was that the cars were not allowed to stand on the street,                                         by Mr & Mrs Syd Maisey, now St Vincent de Paul Society] at No
however Allen and Bill could not comply with this regulation                                       256, then the Royal Theatre, where Mrs Daphne Backhouse has
because there was nowhere to park at the back of the business.                                     a florist shop in the front of the theatre. As you can see, the
The hire cars operated as far as Parramatta and to Colo and                                        movies showing this week are “The Thief of Bagdad” with Conrad
Kurrajong Heights, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.                                                  Veidt, Sabu and June Duprez on Wednesday [6 February 1952]
                                                                                                   and “Double Cross Bones” with Donald O’Connor and Helana
Attached to the hire car business were a mail run and a 1936                                       Carter and “14 Hours” with Paul Douglas, Richard Basehart,
Nash. This was an advantage because there was no limit on the                                      Barbara Del Geddes and Debra Paget on Saturday [9 February
amount of petrol that could be used for the mail run, so they were                                 1952]20.
able to use the petrol in the hire cars. Allen got out of the hire                                                                                To be continued
car business in the late 1950s but carried on the mail run for 39
years, becoming the longest-serving mail contractor in the
Commonwealth. He was initially paid 21/13/4 a month for the
mail run, working six days a week. The Nash was in such bad
condition that passengers had to put up an umbrella inside the
car in wet weather. The mail service ran from Windsor to
Ebenezer, then Sackville North and Lower Portland. There was
no bus service apart from a bus run by Bruce King from Una
Voce at Lower Portland, mainly for his own people. When Allen
first took over the mail run, mail was rowed across the river at
Sackville Reach by Percy Lowe. In 1950, Allen took over the
mail run from Windsor to Cornwallis Road, previously carried out
by Sid Crittle who used to do the run on horseback.]18

Next we have the Windsor & Richmond Gazette office at 200
George Street, then Mr Phil Butt the Dentist [Don, Mal and Ian
McEwan continued the tradition and maintained a dental surgery
here for many years]. Nev Dean’s Pharmacy is at No 206.
Across this laneway, there are three private residences. One
belongs to Mrs Woodard, one is Claudie Stewart’s Taxi Service
and another belongs to Mr O’Brien who is the local St John
Ambulance representative [these houses were demolished to
build Coles Supermarket].

Next there is Davies Industrial Services at No 220, run by A.F.
Cordner. Davies carry out mobile repair for agricultural
equipment such as irrigation plant, tractors, orchard sprays,
graders, dairy equipment, ploughs, cultivators, earthmoving,
logging gear and welding (gas, electric or arc).19 At No 226 is
Hayes Bros & Co who stock Nuffield products [cars, utilities,
trucks, tractors], also Chrysler and Chrysler-Plymouth, Fargo
trucks and utilities and Howard rotary hoes and attachments

17 Windsor & Richmond Gazette, 23 April 1952
18 Oral History Tape, Allen Bushell, from On The Record Oral History Project, Hawkesbury, 23 May
1984, Hawkesbury City Council Library
19 Windsor & Richmond Gazette, 30 January 1952                                                     20 ibid

                                                                                            HAWKESBURY HISTORICAL SOCIETY NEWSLETTER (June 2006)                4

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