April 5 - 11, 2020: Issue 445
Roderic Quinns Poems And Prose For Manly, Beacon Hill, Dee Why And Narrabeen
Portrait of Roderic Quinn] [picture] / The Talma Studios, date: 189-?] PIC Box PIC/7160 #PIC/7160/1--Australian Literary Society photograph collection, courtesy National Library of Australia, nla.obj-146668887-1
The PBP’s page has often been utilised to celebrate Australian poets and their adventures, especially since so many seem to have been inspired by the beautiful landscapes and seascapes of Pittwater or enjoyed the ‘cosmopolitan Brighton-like' atmosphere of ‘The Village’, or Manly when Manly was the place to be inspired by wind and saltwater songs.
This finding of all those Bards who have visited here, or there (Manly), and each place in between these two peninsula poles, has shared insights through ‘A Run to Pittwater’, the poetics of Ella McFadyen in Sands of Morning, the prose of Gertrude Mack when describing Church Point or Alison McDougall when lilting of Elvina Bay, at Palm Beach through Ethel Turner's The Rock Pool and even a wondering over whether The Bulletin’s Archibald walked north from Manly to Narrabeen to take Mark Twain (Samuel Clements) fishing when he was in Sydney. These are just a handful of all found and 'restored' in some way by collecting them here - and proof of our area's beauty in that so many have visited and been inspired by here - many of these being some of Australia's best and most legendary poets.
In 'A Run to Pittwater' by "Viator", a nom de plume for Patrick Edward Quinn, brother of Roderic Quinn, one of the early golden ages of Australian bards is introduced through The Dawn and Dusk club, named for one of Victor J. Daley's works of the same time and formed around 1898 in Sydney, by poet Daley. Foundation members of 'the Duskers' were Daley, Fred J. Broomfield, James Philp, Herbert Low (journalist), William Bede Melville (a reporter for the Sydney newspaper, The Star), Angus Sinclair (writer), Bertram Stevens and Randolph Bedford. The club met at Broomfield's home on the corner of Ice Road and Great Barcom Street, Darlinghurst, near St Vincent's Hospital, Sydney about September, 1898. Daley was elected 'Symposiarch' of the Duskers and the seven 'heptarchs' were Lawson, Stevens, Nelson Illingworth, Frank P. Mahony, George Augustine Taylor, Con Lindsay (journalist), and Philp, who drafted the rules. Artist Norman Lindsay was also a member.
When investigating whether Twain, Henry Lawson and J. F. Archibald really did have a fun fishing day, small inklings that more than just these poets and purveyors of prose visited our area began to appear among the threads. This inspired a further investigation into how many of these early songsters of all things Australian fell in love with Manly and wandered further north into the green and blues surrounding what was then a ‘village’ to some.
This research has grown, encompassing heady days from times long past when it seems Emile Theodore Argles (nom de plume 'Harold Grey' and 'The Pilgrim' among others) and Victor Daley (Creeve Roe) and Henry Lawson along with William Melville, along with other luminaries associated with them, all stirred 'The Village'. The amount of material found formed some late Summer pages - a season well suited to poets - in 2017 and subsequent months - as soon as those pages (yes, they're longer than this one) had been finalised to the poimnt where it was time to let them go.
Begun as one of the all of one theme 'history series' run that year, after finding Mark Twain and Mr. Archibald had ambled their way to Narrabeen, a commencement with a sample of Roderic Quinns' works echoed that ambling from Manly to Narrabeen and beyond, while his celebrations of all seen on bush tracks that wend beside our beaches seemed a perfect prelude to sharing their stories and songs.
To preface his prose and poems of here though, some hearsay of a romantic kind, mixed with a few facts, and then a collection of some of Mr. R Quinn's works that need no interpretation - other than to be revelled in, enjoyed - we hope you have time to enjoy them all now! - :
SURFING AND CELEBRITIES.
Manly 's Augustan Age.
It is an aspect of the eternal fitness of things that surfing, perhaps the most virile and most health-giving of all our sports, should have originated, as far as Australia is concerned, in a seaside village called Manly. So popular has the sport become that it is hard to realise that the right to surf was hardly won, and that it is barely thirty years since at was first admitted. Recent references to the origin of surfing, while substantiality correct, require a certain amount of amendment.
At a Sydney reunion of pioneer members of the Royal Life Saving Society, it was stated that there is still a law on the Statute Book of New South Wales which forbids bathing in view, of the public and that this law was challenged, in 1904, by ‘Mr. W H Goucher,' with the result that an agitation in favour of bathing followed and the law has never since been enforced, the village Hampden referred to was Mr. W. H. Goacher (not Goucher) who, at the time, was editor of the local paper unless my memory is sadly at fault (and I was one of the crowd of spectators who aided and abetted him). Goacher was prosecuted in 1903 for the breach of a regulation framed under the Police Offences Act. Though fined in the Water Police Court, Mr. Goacher declared that he would continue to bathe in proper costumes and it was then discovered that the Police Regulation was ultra vires. It was to this, and not to any magnanimity en the part of the authorities, that Sydney people owe their right to surf. - At that time, Manly occupied a narrow isthmus and though it was still affectionately referred to as 'The Village.' it had already commenced to sprawl across the heights to the north and south. The first six years of the present century might aptly be termed the Augustan Age of Manly. Even before the ban on surfing had been lifted, men and boys were allowed to bathe on the Ocean Beach before seven in the morning. Like Wolley’s 'little wanton boys' we youngsters would enter the water, clad only in ‘trunks'. The official who used to chase us shorewards after seven was, appropriately enough, the municipal council's inspector of nuisances, and we wanton little boys saw to it that his job was no sinecure.
Even before the dawn of the century, Manly, had been the home of giants. Cardinal Moran's Palace and the College for the training of Roman Catholic priests towered on the southern heights. On the northern height was the ibid home of W. B. Dalley, built in the form of an English' castle, and still called 'Dalley Castle,' though it' has passed out of the hands of the Dalley family many years since; Its builder, W. B. Dalley, the father of the novelist J. B. Dalley, was a distinguished lawyer and politician who was prominent in the trial of the bushrangers and who was responsible for the sending of a contingent from New South Wales to the Sudan. It was stated at the time that a little boy in Manly had donated the contents of his money box to the patriotic fund raised in connection with the contingent. At all events, following an amount in a published subscription list, were the words 'A Little Boy |from Manly.' Political opponents said that the little boy was none other than W. B. Dalley himself, and the incident provided the Sydney 'Bulletin' with one of those stock mythical figures which were the delight of our fathers and grandfathers. Sir Edmund Barton, afterwards Prime Minister of Australia and a Justice of the High Court, was another well known resident of The Village during the Nineties.
It was just after ;the Boer war that W. B. Goacher commenced to edit a paper called 'The Manly News.' He was one of those lovable fire-eaters whose lifetime was spent in the fighting of forlorn hopes. He was more an artist than a journalist, and not very successful in painting or writing as, in looking after the interests of others, he neglected his own. Certainly, as the Sydney speaker said, surf clubs throughout Australia should do something to perpetuate his memory. He has yet another .claim to distinction. He was Manly's first Labour candidate. There had been a redistribution of seats in New South Wales, and Manly, formerly part of Wahringah, became part of the constituency then called Middle Harbour. In 1904, just after the redistribution, Goacher: came out as a candidate for Middle Harbour. His campaign was of the whirlwind variety. His meetings were always crowded. His oratory, and gift for repartee provided entertainment for the masses, but he; polled only thirty-three votes. The handicap of a tall hat and a frock coat was too great for a Labour candidate to carry in those days. Next week, in his paper, he returned thanks to 'the thirty-three intelligent electors of Middle Harbour. Poor Goacher's finances were never in a healthy condition and the loss of his deposit ruined him. He disposed of his paper to “Billy” Melville and went to live in Sydney.
Melville was one of the older school of Bulletin writers. He sang the praises of, Manly in season and out of season. It was probably through his personal influence that Victor Daley and Henry Lawson came to live in 'The Village'. I think Roderick Quinn lived there for a little while also. Quinn, if not an actual resident, was a frequent visitor to the others. I remember now we awe-struck youngsters used to gaze at the four poets strolling down the street arm in arm— and taking its width in their stride. One of Daley's, sons was enrolled as a pupil at the Manly Public School. When asked his father's occupation young Daley replied 'writer,' and the headmaster who was a Master of Arts and an honours man in literature cheerfully wrote 'signwriter' in the school admission register.
It was through Melville, that I came to meet both Lawson and Daley. I knew Daley the better of the two. Lawson could not remain long in any place, and while in Manly he met with a peculiar accident. While strolling along the Fairy Bower cliffs, he fell over the rim and broke a few ribs (in fact he broke his ankle - ed.). The usual people said the usual thing about the accident, but I honestly believe that in his absent-mindedness Lawson walked too near the edge and overbalanced. Daley, though a severe critic, was a kindly one. I once had the temerity to call at his house and show him a short story I had written. The place was almost unfurnished, but Daley received me as though he were conducting me into a palace. Incidentally he tore the story to shreds, which embarrassed me considerably because there was another man present, a grim silent looking man whom I thought must be some distinguished editor. I found out afterwards that he was a bailiff. Daley made me sit down there and then and rewrite the story. The next day, he took me up to Sydney and personally introduced me to the editor of the Bulletin, who also said scathing things about the story — but printed it.
All the arts were represented, in Manly during those years. Hilder had lived there for many years- even at that time, and was painting his delicate water-colours and battling against ill-health and genteel poverty. Charlie Bryant was still a schoolboy but was just beginning to make a name for himself in black and white work. W.H. Whiddon, afterwards Deputy Commissioner for Taxation in New South Wales, used to gather the aspiring vocalists of the village and drill them in light opera. As a choir-master and a producer of Gilbert and Sullivan operas, he did much to raise the standards of musical taste, not only in Manly, but throughout the whole State. Another notable resident was an exponent of an older and even more individual art. This was Larry Foley, the veteran pugilist. Somewhere about 1904, he established a boxing academy at his residence on the cliffs overlooking the Manly Lagoon. He gathered round him quite a school of fighting, neophytes but none of them achieved fame. Old Larry, it was said, had become crotchetty in his old age and very Spartan in his methods of instruction. If he did not think a pupil worth bothering about any further, a knock out blow ended that pupil's course of training and inclined him towards another career. For a season or two Larry's square stocky figure and his mutton chop whiskers were frequently seen on the promenade. It was a sight for the gods to see him and his great friend and fellow-Hibernian, the genial Dan O'Conner, disporting in the breakers. They were two of the few Manly great ones who remained distinguished looking in bathers. Dan O'Connor had ended his political career by that time. He provided the Bulletin with another of that paper's stock phrases. While Postmaster-General of New South Wales he had to decide upon the appointment of a minor official in his department; There were many applicants, several of whom were strongly recommended. The P.M.G. decided the matter in a laconic and- phonetic minute-— 'Appoint Maloney.' And Maloney was appointed. He habitually wore the tall hat and frock coat of the period, and his flowing white beard would have been the envy of any Druids’ lodge. But to see him rising from the waves, in his red and blue striped bathers, with that avalanche of whiskers wet and bedraggled, was to obtain an idea of what Father Neptune must have looked like. Though a politician, he was a patron of the arts. He it was who spoke at Sydney's welcome to a famous French actress, and referred to the guest as 'La Belly Franzase.' SURFING AND CELEBRITIES. (1933, February 18). The West Australian (Perth, WA : 1879 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article32585829
Henry Lawson. FALLS DOWN A CLIFF.
Early yesterday morning a Manly resident named Sly was walking round the beach on the ocean side when he suddenly came across Mr. Henry Lawson, the well known poet, who was found to be suffering from a broken ankle, and he said that he had fallen over the cliffs, which in that spot were from 80ft. to 90ft. high. It has been ascertained that Mr. Lawson was in a low state of health lately, and was rather inclined to wander around the cliffs. Ever since his arrival from England Lawson has lived at Manly, where, as he himself says, ' the swells of the sea assuage sorrow.' After being found Mr. Lawson was brought to Sydney, .and as it was considered: that the state of his health demanded it, he was placed under the Control of responsible officials. Henry Lawson. (1902, December 8). National Advocate (Bathurst, NSW : 1889 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article157251906
BY VICTOR J. DALEY.
When, your nerves are on edge, and you hunger for quiet, and the happy diabolical Children are yelling in the street, you are either sorry that the good King Herod died so early, or that you were not bred up as a professional hermit. - It is not the volume, nor even the variety, of the noise that worries you — its incalculable suddenness is what paralyses you. A pressman who has been accustomed to the experience can, so to speak, write with his ear against the machine. But if the machine is drinking —I have seen a machine in that condition, or, rather, I have seen a machinist who said his machine was in that condition it is another matter. . ? Then its inconsequential jerking exasperates you almost to the pitch of madness. This reminds me that upon one occasion, many years ago, I dropped into a little newspaper office in Hunter-street. The newspaper was called 'Society.' Its editor was Harold Grey. It lived thirteen weeks. When I went in Grey was cursing the machinist because the machine wouldn't work. The machinist was a big upstanding fellow who would have killed any outsider who said a word against Grey. But there was a limit even to his forbearance. ' How can I work the machine. without oil?' he growled. . ' ' What's become of the oil?''-said Grey. ' Well,'' said the ' machinist, 'one of your literary staff came in a while ago and demanded a drink. I hadn't a drink to give him. He said it didn't matter; and drank the machine oil!'
In those days I had a cottage at Manly en garcon. It was furnished completely — apparently for honeymoon couples. There was a double breakfast set of innumerable pieces, and a dinner-set of seventy-two : pieces. Grey was staying with me at the time, and we never used the same bit of crockery twice. Grey was a very clean and fastidious man. When some actresses came down to see us once upon a time, we were drinking tea out of butter-boats, and all the other dishes were stacked up ready for washing.
They called us several hard names, and then — the feminine instinct of order getting the better of them— set to and washed the whole stack of dishes. I was sleeping with a rug around me on the beach about fifty yards away. They roused me up and made me chop wood, for the fire, and they made Grey come out of the honeymoon bedroom and cook ham and eggs and make two omelettes. He was a fine cook—, a cordon bleu in his way.
Right: Portrait of Harold Grey and Victor Daley, circa 1880-1895 Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.obj-146669281 , courtesy National Library of Australia
Four girls there were, and they insisted that I should sit at the head of the table. They had previously plundered the cupbonrd, and placed all its little potted luxuries upon the board. It was the first decently set-out meal I had faced since I took the cottage. How their tongues: wagged ! How their teeth, flashed ! . White as the foam on the beach were their teeth. And how they laughed ! And how we laughed ! And how, all of us laughed together ! Never was a merrier party in the world.
Then when the banquet was over, we put up two bottles — we could spare them, they were empty — on two posts. One was labelled with the name of their employer; the other was labelled with the name of ours. We threw stones at them. Grey and I demolished our employer in five shots; but it took the girls half-an-hour to make flinders of Williamson. And where are now those laughing, careless girls? One is a care- worn married woman with seven children. The others—
Where is Lesbia?
Where is Lais?
Where Brunhilde, with brow austere?
Where are Cleopatra, Thais, Bertha,' Broadfoot, Guinevere?
Where is Echo, beheld of no man, Only heard on mead and mere,
And Lady Flora, the lovely Roman—
But where are the snows of yester-year?
They are gone over the horizon. Possibly they are dead. Grey, with all his light wit and wicked sarcasm, has lain 16 years asleep under green grass in the Waverley Cemetery.
Of course, I shall see him again, and he will be the leader of a company of friends of mine in Elysium, and he will 'say ‘Well, you have been a time ! - , What kept you?'
And I will make some feeble excuse about business. And then Morgan will come to the front and say ' He never did any business in his life. He doesn't know what business means. Ask him to have some ambrosia— I' remember !' But I remember 'Morgan' quite as well. Morgan, with his face like the face of a summer moon, was one of the most delightful men I ever met. He also was a writer, but in a different way. Many a night we passed together sending wires to the country papers. They had to be in the telegraph office at certain times up till twelve o'clock. After that time we used to eat hot potatoes and saveloys from a cart that stood outside the post office. And after that, if we could meet with one of our detective friends — we would go to, a place that was known as The Thieves' Inn. It kept open all night— a frowsy, squalid place, with crime written on its' front. I have noticed, by the way, that most kinds of crime are associated with dirt. Forgery, in its various branches, is the only exception. But the other sort of criminals, have two deadly enemies--Soap and the Police, And such faces as we saw there ! The face of the swell magsman who would take your last sovereign from you, and then leave you enough to buy yourself a clean shirt and collar ! The brutal anthropoid face of the man who would — if the coast were clear, cut your throat for the sake of, eighteen pence! The hard, harlot-face of the woman who would sell you to the police while you were asleep. The flushed young face of the woman who would die for a drink. We went there one night, and had. something to drink, and asked all of them to drink. They, drank because Sergeant-Detective Ward was with us. And they drank, slily, sullenly, furtively. All except the young woman and the gentleman in the tall hat. They brazened it out finely. There was a big scoop on at the time— a matter of £5000.
‘Not here,' said Sergeant Ward, ' in a bigger place.' 'Excuse -me,' I remarked. 'You, mademoiselle and madame, will be good enough to take these presents.' ?' It was Christmas Eve.- I had been carrying around Santa Claus cradles and horses until I was tired of them.' They took the presents, and the woman wept, and said that they reminded her of the time when she was an innocent girl-baby in a cradle— seven thousand years ago. But the rest of the crowd looked at me suspiciously in the moonlight, and would have assassinated my shadow if it owned a pocket.
Edwards stayed with me for a trifle of five months. He was a Welsh gentleman with a red beard and long pedigree, and the kindest simplest heart in the world!! He had no money, no occupation, no anything, but a soft, grey eye and an amiable smile, and a hallucination about a sum of one hundred pounds which he was going to receive from his sister in Wales by the next mail. He was the greatest optimist I ever met. 'Where are you off to this morning; Edwards,' I would say when I saw him brushing his faded clothes and fixing his collar. ' G.P.O., old fellow, G.P.O.— that draft is bound to be there to-day.' Of course it wasn't, and never would be. But Edwards would come back bright-and affable, and in no wise discouraged. 'She must have missed the mail,' he would say. She missed the mail for five month's, and for two years afterwards.
There was a cyclorama of the Spanish Armada about to be produced when Edwards was staying with me, and I was engaged to write a lecture upon the subject. A lecture to be delivered upon the stage, you know. I was not very well at the time, and I sent him to the Public Library 'to hunt up authorities and make notes'. He returned with about a pound weight of paper covered with smudged writing in lead pencil. I glanced at it. 'Good heavens,' I said, 'what is this?' It was the story of Drake's voyage around the world and his capture of Panama.' 'It's a most interesting yarn,' he observed; ' I' wonder that I never read it before.' What could you do? I went to the Library and made my own notes. A year or so afterwards' I met Edwards, and asked him where he was staying. 'Well,' he replied, 'they call the place Rats' Castle. Come and see me.' I did, nnd' discovered to my unbounded amazement that he had a wife. ' She was a nursery governess in a place where I used to visit,' he explained to me, 'and. I met her in the street last week and she told me she had been discharged because of her deafness. She hadn't any money, and had nowhere to go. Well, what would you do? I couldn't take her around to the Castle because of her good name. And I couldn't leave her standing homeless in the street. So we dropped in upon a Baptist minister, and I married her.' Talk of generosity!
I may say that Edwards was a bailiff then. Rats' Castle was an old condemned butcher's shop, and Edwards' employer gave it to him rent free. Such a bailiff, too. He used to fall violently asleep when decent, honest people with whom he had to deal were carrying out their pianos and sewing, machines. ' I might be a bailiff,' he said ' but I am also a gentleman.''
Morgan always wore a flower in his coat. Rose or geranium. Always a blossom of bright, color. Keeps 'em from looking at your boots,' he would say.
He was the merriest man I ever met, and the last I saw of him was when he was in his coffin— cold, while, and curiously strange — with lilies at his feel and lilies at his head. Died happily. Drew some money he had earned over and above his salary — and dropped unconscious on the same night that he passed out. The shock of sudden payment perhaps! If this fatality could only happen to me! SOME PEOPLE. (1902, December 20).The Worker (Wagga, NSW : 1892 - 1913), p. 5 (THE WORKER'S Xmas Budget). Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article145884640
Manly Wharf circa 1885, Courtesy State Library of NSW - ferry is the Brighton launched 1883 41y gross tons 220 feet long
The Words Of Roderic Quinn
GREETINGS: MANLY TO BALLARAT
(By Roderic Quinn.)
Mr. R. L. Nicholl, well known as a vocalist and draper in this centre for many years, now of Sydney, has sent on to his brother-in-law, Cr T. T. Hollway, "'Greetings, Manly to Ballarat," verses written for the occasion by Mr Roderic Quinn, one of the best known of the contributors of verse to the "Bulletin."
Mr. Quinn's verses are as follow:-
From our town of golden beaches,
Sheltered vale and grassy flat,
On this day of your home-coming,
Take our greetings, Ballarat.
Gold, and more than gold, you yielded
In the noble days and grand.
When your old historic Stockade
Gave a spirit to our land.
Though your cradle-days have vanished
In the dimming mist of years,
We remember Peter Lalor
And your noble pioneers.
May you prosper in the future,
May your civic spirit stride
Evermore in Freedom's vanguard
By their valor sanctified.
With the golden sunshine on you,
And your children coming home,
Take this greeting that we send you
From our town beside the foam.
GREETING: MANLY TO BALLARAT (1917, March 27). The Ballarat Courier (Vic. : 1869 - 1880; 1914 - 1918), p. 2 (DAILY.). Retrieved fromhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74564066
The suburb of Manly with the palace of Cardinal Moran, Sydney = Vorort Manly mit Palast des Kardinals Moran. Circa 1890, courtesy National Library of Australia http://nla.gov.au/nla.obj-153091490
(By RODERIC QUINN.)
THE other day, the softness of spring being in the air, and her delicate brush-work faintly visible on the wide canvas of bush and swamp around me, as I trod one of the painted roads, certain lines of Victor Daley came into my head and demanded utterance, and I found myself saying them over and out aloud as though to an invisible audience. ' As far, as I can remember they were these:—
Rise up, rise up, light-hearted,
Take thy-pilgrim staff in hand;
For it is the time for roving '
Through' the green and sunny land!
Now, the land about me was sunny, and the gracious saving rains that have fallen lately had made it green, and I was light-hearted and in a mood for roving, and thus it was that I found the lines suited me to a nicety, and blessed the mind that conceived them and the hand that wrote them. While they live and sing,' I' said to myself, Daley did not write in vain.
The roads of Australia, though in places rough and unlovely, have always that enchantment about them which flows from a sense of great distances; and which makes up for the sentiment attaching to historical association—the thoughts of old, unhappy far-off things, and battles long ago,' which the grey leagues of old world roads have witnessed. It is this enchantment that, begets at times in even the staidest of us this desire to cast the trammels of the many streeted city from us and go aroving, careless of where we go, finding mateship in the free winds and the free things, of the wild. The free winds, thank God, will always be with us; none may chain, none forbid them to blow whence and whither they listeth. But the wild things of nature, under the hand of the vandal, are slowly, steadily, year by year, and spring by spring, disappearing from our beautiful country. In a previous article I made comment on the wanton destruction which is being meted out to our stately trees, and as part of that comment, I advanced the truth that the loveliness of the earth was not created only and wholly for the generation in which we live, but that it was intended to delight the eyes of all generations, and that we were exceeding our rights, and doing a wrong to those who came after us by wilfully and thoughtlessly destroying it. Only the other day a report, issued by the Wild Life Preservation Society, drew attention to the shocking slaughter which is going on among our plumaged birds. So that a hat may have a feather in it, so that vanity may flaunt itself, and fashions flash its folly in the highways and the byways of our cities’, the beautiful wild winged creatures of the bush and coast are being done to death by the thousand, and the nestlings left to starve. Thus it is with the trees and birds, and thus, during the-coming flower season, it will be with the flowers.
On these painted roads there was a time when boronia, pink and white, lush and luxuriant, bloomed within hand reach of those who walked them. Only a few years, back, one might get himself a posy of flannel flowers by straying a few yards into the bush, and Christmas bells drooped their gorgeous bugles in every swamp. In every swamp too, grow gorgeous brushflowers (bottle-brush is the atrocious name by which these lovely blooms are popularly known), and everywhere Christmas bush lit the green spaces with its splendour. Things are not so today, and tomorrow they will not be even as they are now. The vandal which abides in most men is at work in the beautiful garden spaces of our coast and in a few years the lover of beauty 'will have to go far, in order to find the flowers that he loves. Last year the vandals came not on foot alone. They came also, the hungriest, the most avid of them, in motor cars, and at end of day every week-end, car after car, in almost endless succession, honked and hurried along the roads that lead from Narrabeen to Manly, and from Manly to the Spit, heaped, full and spilling over with beautiful blooms, ruthlessly plundered from bush and tree. In their hog-like hunger to possess themselves of these flowers, few took the trouble to use knives or scissors in gathering them. They just took hold of the stems or spike or stalks, and if the whole bush gave with their pull, well, so much the worse for the bush. For them sufficient for the day was the plunder thereof, and where no law restricted them why should they restrict themselves? Last year a gentleman, who has built himself a home in a green amphitheatre of hills at the back of Dee Why had a splendid growth of flannel flowers on the acre or so of land surrounding his house. They were of such size and beauty that flower-buyers sought to purchase them for the flower market. But to all and sundry he turned a deaf ear. He intended them for another mission.
Out at Randwick Hospital, and in other hospitals, lay sick and maimed soldiers, and it was his intention to make a gift of his flowers to these sufferers, while the flowers bloomed and the flower season lasted. Being away from his home for days at a time, and knowing the nature of the flower-plundering motorist, he erected notices around his place warning them off, and stating the destination of the flowers. To an ordinary man, the man who gathers his bunch of blooms and takes no more than he needs, the notice would, no doubt, have affected, but the plunderer in the car turned a blind eye to it, scaled the fence, and look all that his greed demanded. To him neither the rights of the man who owned the flowers, nor the purpose for which they were intended, made any appeal. To his way of thinking they were just flowers, and, therefore, to be plucked. Standing by his gateway one evening I talked to the owner of the flowers in question, watching the light of resentment that kindled in his eyes as he spoke of the depredations to which he had been subjected.
'It 's a pity,' I Ventured, 'that they were allowed to go unpunished.'
The light still lurked in his eye, but a grim smile slowly twisted his mouth, as though he chewed over an appetising morsel.
'Most of them got away, scot-free,' he said, 'but I caught two of them.'
'Good,' I commented, 'and what happened them? '
'They suffered for the rest, '' he said, 'and more than their stolen flowers went to the hospitals.'
'Ah?' I queried.
'I gave them the option,'' he continued, 'of taking what the law would hand them or of sending a cheque for twenty pounds to the hospitals; and they sent the cheque.'
''That should be a lesson to them, and warn them off next year,' I commented. 'Next year,' he replied, grimly, 'I'll warn them off with a gun.'
Now, thoughts like these, reflections on the seamy side of man's nature, come seldom to those who walk the painted roads on spring days, or days green and gold with the premonition of spring. Rather does it seem that something of the sweetness and softness and motherliness of Nature's way with the flowers and the trees and the grass enters into one, making him think only of all that is kindly and beautiful and lovable.
Even as I finished repeating Daley's exquisite lines, and as I walked on, at the turn of the road, crouched among the shiny bracken, I came upon two lovers. As my footfalls broke the silence of the still, green place, they turned and looked at me, the young, man smiling, and the girl, no wise embarrassed but still with rich colour on her cheeks smiling too. They bade me 'Good Day,' and turned again to the sweet enjoyment of each other's eyes, and far away in the topmost branches of a flooded gum I heard a thrush telling his mate that spring had come. But I also knew that love was abroad on the painted roads. PAINTED ROADS. (1920, September 11).The Northern Champion (Taree, NSW : 1913 - 1954), p. 7. Retrieved fromhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article158374613
(By RODERIC QUINN.)
From a little while after Easter to a week or so ago, all through the long days and nights between, the beach slumbered in comparative quietude. Gone from it were the surfers, the picnickers, the merry groups of old and young. Only on fine, bright holidays and week-ends, when winter put his harsh biting winds in leash and assumed a kindly aspect, did they return to it. But on such occasions one I could see that the holiday-makers were but half at home under its pines and on its sands. Within them was a feeling that they were there on sufferance only, and that by his graciousness Winter was putting them under a kind of compliment, which took from their enjoyment as true pleasure-seekers. In the cold, white-as-pearl breakers, the surfers, shivering from top to toe the while, danced about, making a great pretence that they were enjoying themselves. Here and there picnic parties made their way to the waterfront, gay of gait and cheerful of tongue, pretending, too, that everything was just as it should be, and the weather ideal for a genial outing. One might notice, however, that they mostly carried wraps and coats and umbrellas, and that when they made choice of a spot on which to settle down, spread their cloths and unpack their hampers, it was the shady places they avoided, and the sunny, sheltered spots they selected. Whatever the smiles they wore, deep down in their hearts they felt that it was winter, and that winter could not be trusted — that at any moment the smile he wore might turn to a snarl and send .them helter-skelter, shivering and betrayed, for home and fireside during those long, lonely months between the passing of autumn and the dancing advent of spring. Gone was the music, gone the low laughter of happy couples from under the pines. White-frocked girls no more went by arm-in-arm with their flannelled admirers. Even the pines, casting deeper shadows on the paths beneath, seemed to feel that it was no time for rejoicing. From north to south, as far as the eye could sec, empty seats leaned back against their trunks dejectedly. Perhaps, for a little while on moonlit nights, cloaked and coated sight-seers would visit the beach -to look on the beauty of its silvered, scintillating waters. But that was on rare occasions, and rarely did the beauty of the scene hold these visitors spell-bound for long. ' On other nights, when winter unchained his furious south-east wind and sent it charging down upon the coast, the beach was utterly deserted. Then, even the thrill of observing nature in a baresark mood, tempted no man-to walk its sands, no matter how adventurous might be his make-up. It was no night, no place for warm human flesh and blood to be abroad in, and as one lay snug abed, listening to the driving rain and howling wind, and the menace of the breaking seas, his heart went out in pity to all homeless folk and unharboured ships. Then perhaps before sleep came, upon him he would echo Henry Kendall's prayer: 'God help our men at sea!' trusting to awake and find in his morning newspaper no story of death and disaster set down in his pages as Nature's ironic answer to his prayer. Thus, night and day, during the long months of winter, longing perhaps for the light and happiness that it had known, lay the many-mooded beach.
A week or so ago, however, the shadow lifted, and the beach became its old bright self again. On ascertain morning a sudden splendour fell upon it. Under an unclouded sun the sea flashed like a mirror, and it seemed as though the sand down at the water's edge glittered with scattered diamond-dust. The foam sparkled white as a hound's tooth, and the torch-like pines in the new light seemed like things kindling with surprise and delight. Even the grim, gray headlands, seamed and scarred by storm, took on the aspect of men, suddenly made aware of glorious tidings. Since that morning, like an exiled king returning to his throne, the beach has come into its own again. Down to its warm sands, towels on their shoulders, its surfers troop, each happy in the knowledge that long months of the finest, the most vitalising, pastime in the whole wide world lie before him. To-day I met one of them, smoking his pipe, and whirling his towel. In the city he is said to be a man of consequence, but here on the beach he was just a genial, frank, free fellow of the surf. 'A lovely morning,' he said. - I nodded agreement. _ 'A morning to make one glad to be alive,' he continued, passing on his way, and still swinging his towel.
A little further along I met a fisherman with his bag on his shoulder, ; making towards his boat. To him I said: 'Good morning, and a good day's sport.'
His face lit up. ! 'Thanks,' he replied, 'it's weather like this that sets the red fish biting.'
And the picnic parties. Every day they are growing more numerous, and every day they come to the beach earlier. From all quarters, reachable by tram and ferry, they come — old and young — leaving care and toil behind, called by the beach and spurred by the holiday spirit’ !
THE BEACH. (1923, December 15). The Northern Champion (Taree, NSW : 1913 - 1954), p. 7. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article158386454
Beacon Hill, Manly
By Roderic Quinn
ANY day, at any hour,
When the bushland, is in flower,
And the busy honey-eaters from the flower-cups take
One who seeks such things may find
Joy of eye and peace of mind
Looking down, on land and water from the top of
There, in, truth, he may behold
Lights of azure and of gold,
purple hills and emerald valleys, distances divinely
And beneath him, full of charm,
Quiet town and restful farm,
With a veil of smoke above them in the blue enchanted
Beaches white and blue lagoons,
Reedy swamps and golden dunes —
These shall make for him a picture such as artist
And, forgetting in that hour,
Worldly wealth and worldly power,
He shall lose himself in beauty, and, deem all but
beauty nought .
It may be that he will see
On the blue tranquillity
Of the brave broad-bosomed ocean a sail that, palely
And that, seeing, he also
Will hoist sails, and musing go
Down the golden tides of fancy to the magic port of
At, that hour and on that, day,
As he sighs and turns away
From that, lavishment, of splendour and that scene
of thrall, and, thrill.
He will feel that gates of gold,
On their hinges backward, rolled,
Giving him a glimpse of Eden from the top of Beacon Hill.
Beacon Hill, Manly (1925, February 4).Sydney Mail (NSW : 1912 - 1938), p. 32. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article159721796
IF you rise up at break of day—
Warm bed and blanket scorning-—
While all around is' mute and still,
And take the road to Beacon Hill
You'll see a sight to glad your eyes
All in the dewy morning.
Alone, upon the summit there,
You'll watch the dawn, unveiling,
Beyond lagoon and beach and tree,
The heaving bosom of the sea ' ;
With, maybe, heading south or north,
A ship upon it sailing.
Anon, as on the dewy air '
The first of .thrushes waking:
Makes melody, you'll view afar
On reef and, shoal, and beach and bar,
In-rolling billows breaking.
Then, having been on Beacon Hill
All in the dewy morning,
And seen dawn's miracle take place,
Blithe, blithe of heart— bright, bright of
Care through the day, toil through the
You'll greet with merry scorning.
In odd moments (1927, June 29). The Australian Worker (Sydney, NSW : 1913 - 1950), p. 13. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article149699010
Manly at Midnight
By Roderic Quinn
FULL-FACED and white the moon is climbing high,
On beach and rock the night-tide inward- makes,
The moonlight, on the moving ripples sets .
A silver swarm of wriggling water-snakes.
Along the shore the night-lamps whitely burn,
With little, wavering pools of light around;
Novo loud, now low, now far away, now near,
Upon the beach the washing waters sound.
With silver, gleams upon their plumy tops
The pine-trees stand., their branches spreading wide;
A stone-throw from the beach, like things that drowse
The tetherd boats are nodding on the tide.
Scarce stirring plume or pine or blade of grass
A cool, breeze blows — blows soft and fitfully;
Far-off, her port-light red as new-shed blood,
A stealthy collier makes her way to sea.
Back from the shore the still, tall houses stand,
Upon their dew-wet roofs the full moon gleams,
Within their walls with weary head and hand.
The townsfolk sleep— God send them happy dreams.
Manly at Midnight (1927, December 21).Sydney Mail (NSW : 1912 - 1938), p. 9. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article158297825
The Manly Pines .
OFTEN, when the Winter sun
Shone as now it softly shines,
Straying hither peace I've won
From dull care beneath these pines.
In their tall companionship
Good I found it to reside—
Watching seagulls wheel, and dip
Silver - wing- tips in the tide.
Many moments have I whiled,
Whiled away, as dreams I , planned-
Idling1 like yon little child
Building castles out of sand.
Play to him his building is '
Working on with eyes ashine;
Castles by the sea are his, . -
Castles in the air were mine.
'Neath the sure tide; rising slow,
Soon his castles all shall fall
As my castles, 'long ago,
Tumbled earthward,* tower and wall.
Yet, though brought to nought for me
Are past hopes and brave designs,
Something still remains to see—
Here's the sea, and here the pines.
The Manly Pines. (1930, May 21). The Australian Worker (Sydney, NSW : 1913 - 1950), p. 10. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article145975416
Manly Beach - between 1918-1930. Creator:Hall & Co. ,Home and Away - 35105 Image No. hall_35105
Roderic Quinn has chosen 'Romance in the Market-Place' as his best poem and 'A Song of Winds' and 'The Camp Within the West' as his favorites.
If I might be permitted to preface a choice of my verses with a few remarks, I would like to thank The Worker for the generous opportunity it has afforded Australian verse-writers of meeting Australian readers heart to heart. In spite of the cheap sneers of unimportant persons and unimportant journals, I think the vast majority of Australians will agree with me when I say that there is such a thing as Australian Poetry, and that those who, in that calling, have attempted something and achieved something; have, at least, as large a right to the public ear as the petty politician who strikes an attitude and says: 'Alone I did it!" Then too it is somewhat of a' fashion in certain cultured circles to treat the idea of the existence: of an: Australian Poetry as a myth, a dream — a thing meriting only disdainful contempt.
Although Burke and Wills have passed away and Leichhardt's bones lie white in some undiscovered Central spot, I take it that the pioneering era has not yet vanished from Australian life, and that those who explored the early ways in Australian Literature are in a little wise at least entitled to the nation's respect and regard; It may be that we have not produced a Milton. Well, have we produced a Napoleon? If Australia has not produced a great poet, has she produced a great, statesman, or warrior? Has she even produced a great critic? A Milton, just the same as a Washington, is the product of inspirational events. Before Washington there were many backwoods fighters, many men who proclaimed the rights of, man, and to the making of Milton went ?many poets. When Australia's hour arrives, when the poet-making Event arrives, the great poet, just the same as the great statesman and the great warrior, will-not be found wanting. And now to the purpose of this writing. Of all the lines I have written I remember few, and the few that I remember may not have, a general appeal. Then, too, they may not be my best; one cannot be creator and critic at once. However, foremost of all, I favour 'Romance in the Market Place' and I favour-it not because I had to dig for, it- (for it caused me little effort to write it), but because, I think it expresses a universal mood. The marketplace is not necessarily a place, of stalls and hucksters,' silver shining, fish, or red sides of beef. It may be anywhere, everywhere—but wherever it is there, be sure; every man and woman, girl, or boy, at some hour of the day, or day of the year, shall forget the world and find Romance. Romance to some is but a memory, to some it is a girl’s eyes to some it is a thought of audacious achievement; and I have seen men at street corners musing, strangely, and with a look in their eyes which did not concern itself with the hurry and bustle of the passing crowd, the rattle of wheels, or the flaming poster- on the news-stall proclaiming what was happening in the world.
I like the ' Song of Winds because it phrases a seaside impression. For long years, Sunday after Sunday, (and often with a week day in between), it was my delight to bask on a beach enjoying the royal heat of the sun, or cool of a shadowing cliff. I took a passionate interest in wind and weather, and it always seemed to me that there was something in the north-east wind which asked for interpretation. In particular I remember one summer Sunday night at Manly when a north-east wind had been blowing for three days, and the air was full of depressing humidity. The north-easter died away, and suddenly, quickening the blood, and filling the body with a fine freedom, a southerly hurled itself upon the coast. On the following day I wrote, the 'Song of Winds.'
Many years ago I was privileged to be one of a party of writers invited by Mr. A. G. Stephens to spend a few days with him on the mountains. Louise Mack was of the number, and Francis Kenna, and at evening we would sit on a verandah facing the Great Western Road and quote poetry (mostly Australian) till the sun set and after. At times, while we talked, a swagman— always tired, always near the end of his day's journey — tramped along the road. Afterwards I remembered that swagman — remembered him as type of humanity, marching to its last camp ' The Camp Within the West.'
RodericJoseph Quinn was born at Sydney on November 26, 1869. Both parents came from Ireland. His first published writing was a story in the ‘Freemans Journal,' and the 'Bulletin' accepted similar work soon afterwards. The writing of verse came later. After a term of office work, and another of schoolteaching at Milbrulong, near Wagga, Quinn settled down to writing for the press in Sydney. That, for the most part, has been his occupation since about 1890. His best work in prose, like that in verse, has high qualities. A very early production, Quinn relates, was a novel written soon after leaving school. It contained 100,000 words, mostly adjectives, and dealt with a drought for about three-quarters of its length. The rest was blood and love. The young author conceived that it was every chapters duty to open with record of the weather — but the weather was always the same! The world has been deprived of the opportunity of seeing how this difficulty was mastered, for after he had sent the novel to England for publishers' consideration the author awoke to an understanding of its defects, and sent a letter withdrawing it. But it had been lost sight of, and for three years Quinn was left with a haunting fear that it might stray into print. At last the manuscript turned up, and was gladly committed to the flames under the boiler. Quinn's published books are ' Mostyn Stayne' a prose romance (George Robertson and Co., Melbourne; 1897) ; 'The Hidden -Tide' (1899), and 'The Circling Hearths'' '(1901)— both verse books, published in- Sydney. They were afterwards reissued, with work by other Australian writers, in ' A Southern Garland ' (Bulletin Company, Sydney, ,1904). The poems now given are from ' The Hidden Tide.' They were first printed in the 'Bulletin’.
Romance in the Market Place
YOU stood beside the flowers,
Yourself a flower;
And on your face
The twilight stayed another hour,
It shone so pale;
And all around men talked as in a market-place.
I heard them talk, and felt
No interest stir
In what they said.
Lilies were nigh you, and around you were
The lights of love,
And all about the world moved on with nervous tread.
I heard it not; for down
And round about
My soul you drew
The veils that shut the loud earth out,
And I and you
Were there alone — no one beside but I and you!
What words were those we said?
Old ones, perchance,
Pale with the pain
Of all who've kissed, and talked romance,
And said farewell,
And mixed their tears and kissed, and sighed — and sighed in vain.
We stood a sainted while,
And then your hand
Sought to be free,
And you were gone; and all the land
Was under gloom,
And lamps were lit for other men, but none for me.
I stood and watched you go,
The loud world grew
Like some great-voiced, insetting sea;
And men went by,
Talking of trade and war and all but love and you.
A Song of Winds
WOE to the weak when the sky is shrouded,
And the wind of the salt-way sobs as it dies!
Woe to the weak! for a great dejection
Droops their spirits and drowns their eyes.
Woe to the weak who tire of fetters,
Of grim life-fetters that gall and bind!
For the Sea tells stories of death made lovely,
And a siren sings in the nor'-east wind.
It wanders the coast like a tombless spectre,
And drips dank dew on the drooping leaf;
And the soul grows pensive with dim suggestions
Of grey old troubles and ancient grief.
'Tis grave and low, and with woeful plaining
Sighs death-notes under a sky of grey;
And who hath an ear may hear the voices
Of pale men dead on its streaked sea-way.
In fading twilights o'er sullen seascapes,
A lost, wan wind 'neath a dead grey sky,
It swoons to land like a weary swimmer,
Sobs and falters and turns to die.
Seeking a tomb in dark coast caverns
Where wet rust reddens the fretted stone,
The wandering sea-thing sinks to silence,
Sinks and dies with a last low moan . . .
A last low moan, and deadly stillness . . .
Then the sudden crash of a league-long sea,
And fresh from his den in the white ice region
The Wolf of the South is speeding free;
Cleaving the air with his chill grey shoulders,
Trampling the sea to foam beneath.
The Wolf of the South goes howling nor'ard,
A mastless hull in his long white teeth.
Black swans on high, a far faint phalanx,
Wing their way to a northern clime,
Sending feathers of sad sound downward,
Mournful notes of an evil time —
An evil time, for the black Night chases
And darkness swallows the trailing flock;
An evil season of wild white weather,
And foam and tumult on reef and rock;
Of yellow floods on the Northern rivers,
And fierce waves swaying from crest to trough,
Of creaking schooners wearing seaward,
And signals crying — Stand off! Stand off!
Of frothy flakes on the wild waste flying,
And anxious faces, and fateful news;
Of close-reefed topsails, and battened hatches,
And straining engines and racing screws;
Of pumice-stone and brown weeds riven,
Cast up and flung on the hissing sand;
Of squadroned waves and their mighty charging,
And the stern repulse of the frowning land;
Of whipped white faces faring stormward
With smothered words and wrecked replies,
Of trees blown down on the windy ridges,
And stormy shoutings, and tempest cries;
Of eyes that dance to the wild wind's music,
Of strange sweet thrills through the calm-sick form,
Of Storm throned king on the mad white ocean,
Of Storm the Monarch — all hail to Storm!
The Camp within the west
O DID you see a troop go by
Way-weary and oppressed,
Dead kisses on the drooping lip
And a dead heart in the breast?
Yea, I have seen them one by one
Way-weary and oppressed;
And when I asked them, “Whither speed?”
They answered, “To the West!”
And were they pale as pale could be,
Death-pale, with haunted eyes?
And did you see the hot white dust
Range round their feet and rise?
O, they were pale as pale could be,
And pale as an embered leaf;
The hot white dust had risen, but
They laid it with their grief.
Did no one say “The way is long,”
And crave a little rest?
O no; they said, “The night is nigh,
Our camp is in the West!”
And did pain pierce their feet, as though
The way with thorns were set,
And were they visited by strange
Dark angels of regret?
O yea; and some were mute as death,
Though, shot by many a dart,
With them the salt of inward tears
Went stinging through the heart.
And how are these wayfarers called,
And whither do they wend?
The Weary-Hearted — and their road
At sunset hath an end.
Shed tears for them . . .Nay, nay, no tears!
They yearn for endless rest;
Perhaps large stars will burn above
Their camp within the West.
RODERIC QUINN. (1909, December 23).The Worker (Wagga, NSW : 1892 - 1913), p. 21. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article145892619
"The Playground of Australia."
THE COUNTRY PRESS AT MANLY.
After the run to Narrabeen and other places in Warringah Shire, we halted on a pretty reserve at the back of Dee Why beach, where the ladies of the district provided afternoon tea, and there were more speeches and cheers. After the banquet we had left only a short while be-
fore, it looked like over-doing it, but then all the ladies had not been to the banquet. The Surf Club were to give an exhibition on the beach, but rain interfered, and this was abandoned. We were back in Manly by 6 o'clock after a delightful outing, and I understand that many of the party had their minds firmly made up to spend portion at least of their next holiday in what the Manly people are pleased to call "The Playground of Australia.
Not content with feasting us on the sights and other good things of Manly, the citizens presented each member of our party with a very nice souvenir of the occasion, giving particulars and views of the various beauty spots. The souvenir also contained the following lines of welcome specially written by Roderic Quinn, the well-known Australian poet, and they are worth re-printing:
Men of the North, and the South, and
From toil with its day-round of
trouble, set free,
We greet you to-day in a greeting expressed
By the Song of the Wind and the
Wash of the Sea !
Though the sight of your coming has
gladenned our eyes,
Though kindness and friendship
find voice in our speech,
What welcome can equal the welcome that lies
Is the blue of our skies and the
gold of our beach ?
Each tree on the hillside is nodding
The little leaves dance, and the
flowers, red and white :
Come, eat of the banquet that Beauty
Come, sit at her table of music
and light !
Forget for a moment the world with
its ills —
Its sorrows and sighings and wearisome hours —
In the holiday mood of our lakes
and our hills,
In the song of our birds, and the
scent of our flowers.
Men of the Pen from the North and
And the South and wherever your
biding may be,
We great you to-day in a greeting
By the Song of the Wind and the
Wash of the Sea.
In our general remarks we omitted mention of the great improvement effected to the Corso at Manly of recent years by the formation of flower beds down the centre, which at once gives the visitor the impression that he is in a garden city. "The Playground of Australia." (1917, November 17). Southern Star(Bega, NSW : 1900 - 1923), p. 3. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article137341524
THE FREEDOM OF THE SURF
(By RODERIC QUINN.)
The saying in Europe and America is, or used to be, for the war has changed many things: "See Paris and die." The Australian rejoinder to this should be: "See Manly and don't die. Live on instead, and go on seeing it as long as your eyes will permit you, and then get spectacles, and keep on seeing it to the end."
It has often been said that there is only one Manly in Australia. Men who have travelled beyond the seas go further than this; they say there is only one Manly in the World. Europe has its beaches, but they are not comparable with the golden sands that lie on either side of the radiant isthmus of Manly. America has its "Sea-side resorts, but their charms are man-made ; Nature has been conspicuously neglectful in the fashioning of them. On the other hand, when Nature, sometimes as a painter, sometimes as a sculptor, long ago worked in her spacious studio, shaping and colouring the contour and lights of Manly, she gave expression to one of the happiest inspirations that ever came to her. Man has had little to do with its beautification. Certainly he planted the tall torch-like Norfolk Is-land pines that fringe its beaches, thus lending a further lustre to its loveliness, but on the whole he has behaved rather as a spoiler, than as an enhancer, of its charms, A generation ago Manly was un-known to the world; to-day it is a matter of daily mention wherever tour-its foregather and talk of things and places, seen by and known to them, in the lounges and corridors of far away hotels in Europe and America; for he, who has once seen Manly, keeps a picture of it- forever hanging in the gallery of his mind. Always with him are the blue, blazing splendour of its harbour front, and the azure, spaciousness of its sea-front. Ever present is the vision of its rolling, spreading foam, white as a hound's, tooth, wherein humanity, young and old, bronzed and vital, shapely and glistening, abandons itself to the joy of the moment, laughing, shouting, plunging, frolicking.
To-day, and on any day during the surfing season, that is what any visitor to the ocean-front may see. A score of years ago he would have looked for such a scene in vain. A score of years ago Puritanism, grim and .dour of aspect, forbade the people to enter the surf, during the long hot day— hours when the surf was most inviting, most-luring, most health-endowing. Many residents and visitors from the city murmured darkly or cursed loudly— but, fearful of the law, refrained from overt action, contenting themselves with curse and murmur. The time came when the need of man brought forth the man, and another village Hampden arose to fight for the liberty of the surfer. One day word went through the village that William Gocher, a sturdy fighting journalist and one of the most honest; -genial and kindly, of good fellows, had determined to flout the law, defy Puritanism, and bathe in the surf to his heart's content, during prohibited hours. This in the columns of his paper— "The Manly and North Sydney News"— he boldly announced his intention of doing on a certain date. And this he did, fearless of consequence, and so supported by public opinion that no harm resulted to him. From that bold adventure dates the history of surf-bathing on Manly Beach, and on all the beaches, lying north and south of it. Gocher has gone to his rest, and but few remember him; but by this act alone his name has earned the right to live, while folk go down to the surf and swimmers shoot the breakers. In Waverley Cemetery a stone at the head of his grave tells of his achievement, and in that grave lies the remains of one who was always a fighter for popular rights— a stubborn journalist, who, at times, was also an artist. As a journalist he did much, as an artist little. Still, as an artist he left behind him a portrait of Henry Kendall done in oils. This portrait, I believe, is treasured and appreciated by his widow. Perhaps, one day, it will be given the chance of wider appreciation.
Somewhere in one of his poems Byron wrote : "Italia, oh Italia, thou hast the fatal gift of beauty !" Of Manly, it may also be said that it not only has the gift of beauty, but beauty's fatal lure as well. Those who go down to the radiant isthmus, lying between the splendour of the harbour and the majesty of the sea, should look well to their wills, to see that they are wrought of steel and with out flaw. Coming for a few days, coming for a week, they may stay on till, the days grow to weeks, and the weeks to months, and the months, per chance, to years. Witch-like, its beauty lays holding hands upon them, till it becomes to them the one place in all the world in which to live. Folk tell you this, every day of the year, glorying in their thraldom. They say to you: "Three years ago I came down here on a month's visit. The place got hold of me. I couldn't leave it: I don't think I ever shall." Or they say ; "I’ve been here a week. A week's not enough, a year's not enough, a lifetime's not enough. I live back of Bourke. I hate to think of leaving all this" — with a sweep of the arm that circles the horizon from the harbour-shore to Long Reef and the far sea line, lying eastward— "and when I can manage it, I'm coming back here.' to put in the rest of my days."
The caveman, the man-of-the-wild, is in all of us, and when it gets a chance it stirs, and cries out, and struggles to become uppermost again. If it had its way, it would take many of those who live in Manly out of their prim bungalows and crowded boarding-houses, and make them cave-dwellers. Still, they "went beach," as the saying is, they might not find that manner of life as fascinating as the man-of-the wild, at work within them, is so fond of picturing. They would presently discover that life in a cave, just like life in a bungalow and a boarding house, is not without its discomforts. The other night George Whittle, the enterprising, optimistic, and humorous manager of the Manly Chair Company, arranged a gorgeous banquet of music at the bandstand on the ocean beach. The band consisted of seventy-two players, and as they played, the moon — I dare say George would tell you that he also arranged the still, tall pines, mingled its dim misty silver light with the silver music of cornet and chiming bell. When the concert was finished, a friend said: "Lord, think of all this loveliness ! - Then think of me, leaving it by the next boat for a frowsy room in a terrace-house with houses on each side of me, and houses in front of me, and back yards behind me. Think of it— or don't— I wouldn't have even my worst enemy think of it." MANLY'S LURE. (1923, March 7).Lachlander and Condobolin and Western Districts Recorder (NSW : 1899 - 1952), p. 7. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article213138855
The Camp — And Getting There
By Roderic Quinn
' The gods were certainly in a good mood when they made Australia"
WHAT between one thing and another something forgotten, something demanding the attention of one or other of us at the last moment, we did not make a start towards the place of our three days' camp till somewhere about midnight. The only tram which would have been of any service to us had long since departed on its last run, and, as a motor car at midnight is an expensive item, there was nothing for us but to foot it over the long dark miles to the boathouse at Narrabeen. 'It's Hobson's choice,' said Big George as he swung his swag across his shoulders, 'but, after all, the road's good and the weather's not bad.' Then we lit our pipes, closed the door behind us, and set out on our midnight walk of seven miles. Luckily for us we had sent along most of our paraphernalia, such as billies, grids, and the like, per medium of a friend some days before, and travelled unburdened by anything weightier than a blanket and rug a-piece. 'By travelling light and by travelling in congenial company,' said Big George, stretching his long legs in a free stride, 'walking can be made one of the most enjoyable of recreations. How bright the stars are!'
They were bright too, bright and large, and seemingly much closer to earth than they usually appear. A thunder-storm had cleansed the air of its dust and vapours, and seen through this chastened atmospheric medium, star and planet and constellation seemed not so remote, so alien, so unreachable; as on less favourable occasions. 'Lord!' said Big George, expanding his chest and drawing a deep breath, 'how sweet the air is!' We had left the last straggling joint of the tail of the town behind us, and moved now along the open road with trees and bushes and rocks on one side of us, and wide, waste swamp lands on the other. From the trees and bushes stole sweetening odouip, sometimes of musk, sometimes of peppermint, odours released by certain leaves and flowers at night, and these it was that had moved my companion to enthusiasm. Although a very soft wind blew from the west, stirring the trees ever so gently, there was notr enough of it to raise the dust, and as there was no traffic at such an hour there was, also, no noise of wheel or whistle. From the swamps at times came cool breaths of air, as though a door had opened, let out a draught, and then closed again. From their depths, also, came at intervals the cries of birds, and always, as, though the night and the swamp belonged to them, the pulsatingly, solemn croaking of multitudinous frogs.
' His thoughts go back to the long ago.'
LISTENING to them, Big George chuckled. 'I met | a fellow once,' he said, 'who hated frogs;' again he chuckled, and, knocking the ashes from his pipe, continued: 'He hated work too — hated it from the depths of his being; hated even to see others doing it,' hatod the sight of it. The worst offence anyone could commit was to offer him a job. The two persons in history he could never forgive were Adam and Eve, because they had imported work into the world. ' 'Well, as always happens sooner or later to those who try to dodge what they are set on earth to do. he found himself cold-shouldcred on every side. Men would have nothing to do with him, and women scorned him, but, when the frogs, also, turned on him, his rage and sorrow became too much for him, and he sat down by the roadside and wept.' 'The frogs?' I said. 'Yes, he was coming along a road such as this, with a big swamp on either side of it. It was toward midnight, and he was full up of John Barleycorn, and full of rage, too, at having been called a loafer by some timber-getters, to whom he had mentioned his deep-rooted detestation of work of all kinds, the night was very black, and there was a promise of [ rain in the air, and, if you've ever noticed, when rain is promised the frogs never fail to notify the fact with loud emphasis. Although, big and little, liasso and baritone, they were filling the darkness
round about him with their chorus, the fellow I'm telling you about was so engaged in living over again in memory the encounter he had had with the timber-getters, and so exasperated with the thought of the name that they and others had nailed upon him, that, for a time, lie walked on, heedless of the concert in the swamps. At last, however, during some pause in the operation of his mind his senses began to act, and he became aware of a hated sound. Shocked, dumbfounded, he stood still and listened. ' 'Wur-rk.' 'Repeated at regular intervals, it seemed to shake the air with its volume. ' 'Wur-rk, Wur-rk, Wur-rk!' 'Of course he knew that the sound came from the frogs, but that did not lessen his wrath. The calculated regularity with which
they chorused out the hateful word made bin blood boil. Raising his short fist, he shouted back at them: ' 'Work yourselves, you wasters. You're th» biggest crowd of loafers in the world yourselves, doing nothing but sitting amongst slime all day, sunning your fat, slimy green carcases. Get work yourselves!' 'From all around, from far and near, in deep-noted, regular pulsations of sound, came back the frogs' response. ' 'Wur-rk, Wur-rk, Wur-rk:' 'Then the unfortunate fellow, unable to contend against the tremendous chorus of being unseen tormentors, and feeling that the whole of creation had arrayed itself against him, tool; to his heels and ran till he collapsed for want of breath. Sill in,? by the roadside he raged, while, far behind s him. the night still pulsated with the word he haled. 'THERE the road I am speaking of — Pitt water-road — climbs the hill from Deewhy to the Long Reef ridge, we looked back on the lagoon. Mirrored in it were many stars, and from it came the faint, plaintive cries of black swans. Considering his grace, and beauty and the interesting life he leads, is there any feathered creature in Australia with such an appeal to us as the black swan? Flying over city and town at night, he tells us that there are still wild wide places to which we, like him. may take wings and escape when own and city tire and bore us. For months at a lime he haunts the lagoons on the coast, and then, for months at a time, they are without any sign of him, he being somewhere far away — on the Macquarie marshes, perhaps, helping his male to rear her sable signets. Why will not. one of our ornithologists delight our hearts by writing us a book about, him. and telling us all about his life history? The midsummer dawn saw us afloat on the Narrabeen lagoon, rowing towards .Middle Creek, where the third member of our party awaited us. Thither he had gone two days before, taking a comfortable tent with him and setting it up in a cosy nook under great tree. As we .pulled along I. over the weedy shallows we had visions ? of him 'already abroad, and preparing a succulent breakfast for us.
'Half the pleasure of camping out,' said Big George sagely, 'is to take life in a leisured way — to lie by and laze and let, others do things for you.' Presently the dawn grew more defined, golden light taking the place of the early . green glow all along the eastern skyline. The morning was windless, and the lagoon lay still — a still place of glowing waters. But not for long, for soon bird and fish awoke to the fact that it was day, and .-if !hat a day's work lay before them, and stirred it, with life and motion. Here a t mullet, leapt, sending ripples far and wide: here a blue crane hopped his way heavily from shore to sandspit, and yonder a flock of seagulls rushed headlong towards the sea, their white wings and breasts goldenlinged by the early light. THEN on tree and bush the singing birds awoke, giving out such a joyous chorus f that, hungry as we were and sleepy as we
PLOUGHING THROUGH THE PACIFIC.
were, we could not but cease rowing and lie across our oars, so that, we might give full heed to it. It seemed to us that it was little Jacky Winter who first became aware that a new day was at hand, and that it was he who was first to trill the news abroad to the feathered world. Then came the peewits, one here, one there, telling each other, in that series of single, liquid notes which they sometimes give out, that a very lovely thing was happening. Presently the butcher-bird added the charm of his full, rich warble to the growing melody, and then the kookaburras, not to' be outdone, shook the bush with their merriment. So announced, the sun cam'e up suddenly, like a great golden coin resit from the mint. 'It's worth losing a lot of sleep to be present, at such a concert in such a ball,' said Big George, bending himself to his oars once again. Shortly afterwards we came, to the camp in Middle Creek, where our friend awaited us, and, having carried what we had brought with us ashore and stored it in and around the tent, we sat down to a fond breakfast over which, however, we nearly fell asleep. Robert Louis Stevenson has said somewhere that weariness is a greater torture than the cravings of hunger, and, because slumber crept over us even while we ate, I believe that, when he spoke so he spoke the truth. Three whole enchanted days and nights we spent in or about, that, secluded spot at, Middle Creek. Sometimes we would take our boat, and, when the sunrays so slanted as to give the necessary effect, pull up to some quiet pool in which the hills on either side were mirrored: with their Hooded gums and their cabbage-trees and their fan-palms, as clearly and delicately featured in the cool depths as were the trees and palms they reflected on the heights above. Sometimes we would cross the lagoon, rowing lazily and watching lite fretted sands and weedy bottom beneath us as we rowed, and pay a visit lo South Creek or Deep Creek, and there loaf away the hours among' the trees and palms and Mowers. ONLY a few mites distant from Sydney, how many of its people know of this lagoon and its lovely creeks? Scenes of such loveliness, were they situated in the vicinity of other cities, would find a trumpets in every mouth to sound their charms aloud. But, with Sydney folk a very embarrassment of beauty of nook and river, gully, beach, and cove, makes litem indifferent, to what a less favoured people would regard as a blessed gift of nature. As Big George, said, while we rowed homeward from our camping-place a the end of our fine days' outing: 'The gods were certainly in a good mood when they made Australia !'' The Camp—And Getting There (1921, December 14).Sydney Mail (NSW : 1912 - 1938), p. 18. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article162033476
LATE AFTERNOON STUDY IN DEEP CREEK-ROAD, NARRABEEN. Woodland Shades-- (1935, October 30).The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), , p. 16. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17237516
THE THRUSHES AND THE RIPPLES.
Among the spreading' red-gums, .
Set around with gracious green
I heard the thrushes singing
Last week at Narrabeen.
Light lay upon the bracken,
As through the drowsy noon
Their liquid notes went thrilling
Across the blue lagoon.
And, while among the red-gums -
Sweet song, they did outpour, .
With gentle, soft responses
The ripples lapped the shore.
No memories of the city,
No hint of crime and care,
'Came, blown across the waters
To spoil the woodland air.
Far better than man's turmoil,
His fevered thoughts and deeds,
The thrushes in the red-gums,
The ripples in the reeds.
IN ODD MOMENTS (1923, October 17).The Australian Worker (Sydney, NSW : 1913 - 1950), p. 13. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article145795940
Sepia toned black and white photographic postcard of 'NARRABEEN. N.S.W. AUSTRALIA.'. It is dated 24 Jun 1913, and shows a street scene with men walking down the street and men in a horse and buggy riding down the street. There is a handwritten message on the back that reads 'Dear Ernie, Received your photo's today/ Thanks very much for same/ Glad to hear you are better and had a good time at Herne Bay/ I truly hope you will not have to go under an operation/ I think the photo at the Convalescent home is a good one of you considering how many there are in the photograph/ I have not much time to write you a letter this week and I know you like a p.c. now and again/ That is whyu I am sending p.c. this week, besides I wrote to Lill, Pop, Annie a letter each this week/ This is a photo of a place not far from Manly been there a good many times/ Bert'. - courtesy Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1 in the National Museum of Australia Collection
GUM-TIPS upon my table stand,
All delicate of shape and sheen
And as I gaze on them my thoughts
Go winging back to Narrabeen,
To Narrabeen, where Nature strays
Down bushland ways and waterways.
Leaf-led, led by these lovely leaves,
Once more in fancy wandering
On lakeside tracks of flower and fern,
I hear the hidden thrushes sing,
'While clothed is hill and lake and sea
By broad midsummer radiancy.
How magical is Memory,
That thus can take the -mind in charge,
Enfranchise it from narrow walls-'
And set it journeying, where large
And fair horizons lie' around
Blue waters, and hills forest-crowned.
In odd moments (1925, December 2). The Australian Worker (Sydney, NSW : 1913 - 1950), p. 13. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article145959006
The Bridges Narrabeen Pittwater N.S.W. - courtesy Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1 in the National Museum of Australia Collection
ABOVE the shores of Narrabeen,
High on a sloping spur,
There lies a garden in the hills
That knows no gardener.
With weeds and briars and tangled vines
And bracken overgrown,
Owned now by none, the hungry Wild
Has claimed it for its own.
Where once the golden lights of morn
With dancing shadows played,
Waste be the plots, and waste the paths
A dead flower-lover made.
And yet though lorn that garden is —
Searched out and seen by some—
There blooms, at times, a wild white rose
Or red geranium.
Though vanished is the gardener
Who kept that garden trim,
Wild rose and red geranium
Have not forgotten him.
GONE WILD. (1932, September 28). The Australian Worker (Sydney, NSW : 1913 - 1950), p. 10. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article146153882
Manly Beach, Sydney, New South Wales ca. 1877-79, J. Paine. Photo courtesy National Library of Australia, http://nla.gov.au/nla.obj-144927039
Emile Theodore Argles - champion of all Australians without a Voice - a very funny Satirist, Manly Poet and Pittwater Prose Writer and Litterateur
Mark Twain, J.F. Archibald And Henry Lawson - Did They Go Fishing At Narrabeen In The Spring Of 1895?: Probably!
No more will Rod his lyrics sing,
As tuneful as the thrush when
With minstrel voice is calling;
As joyous as the gentle chime
Of bellbirds in the Summertime
From sylvan spires down-falling.
The harp is mute from which he
The magic of a music new
Of woods and golden beaches;
Its silent strings tell ne'er again
Enraptured tales of hill and plain
And gleaming river reaches.
But this fair land shall ever be
Indebted to his minstrelsy,
So, written on the portal
Of Art's proud temple, will his
Go down forevermore in fame
Untarnished and immortal.
- E. J. BRADY.
Roderic Quinn (1949, October 1). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 7. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article18135466
FUNERAL OF BALLADIST.
RODERIC QUINN BURIED.
The funeral of Mr. Roderic Quinn, one of the last of the Australian bush-balladists, took place at Waverley Cemetery yesterday. He died on Monday, aged 79. Friends laid his walking-stick and a sprig of gum-tips on his grave.
Mr Quinn was a close friend of Henry Lawson, Will Ogilvie, E. J. Brady, and "Banjo" Paterson, who led the school of ballad poetry in Sydney in the 1890's. Will Ogilvie, who is in Scotland, and E. J. Brady, now living in Victoria, are the only survivors of the group.
The Roman Catholic Vicar General of Sydney, Monsignor R. Collender, celebrated Requiem Mass at the Holy Cross Church, Woollahra.
The Mass was attended by many of Sydney's best known artists and authors. The Minister for Local Government, Mr. J. J. Cahill, and the Minister for Conservation, Mr. G. Weir, rep-resented the State Government.
The chief mourners were four of Mr Quinn's nieces. FUNERAL OF BALLADIST (1949, August 18). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article18125431
MR. P. E. QUINN.
The funeral of Mr. Patrick Edward Quinn, the well-known Sydney journalist, took place on Saturday afternoon in the Roman Catholic Cemetery, Manly. Prior to the funeral a requiem mass was celebrated in the Roman Catholic Church, Manly, by the Rev. Father J. McDonald, parish priest. Monsignor Hayden officiated at the graveside, being assisted by Dr. Niven and Father McGovern.
The principal mourners were Mrs. Quinn (widow). Miss Marjorie Quinn (daughter), Mr. Roderic Quinn (brother), Misses Nora Quinn and Frances Quinn (sisters). Miss Mary Bourke and Mrs. James Quinn (sisters-in-law), Misses May Quinn and Kathleen Quinn (nieces), and Dr. Roderic Quinn (cousin).
There were also present Messrs. W. Farmer Whyte (representing the Institute of Journalists), W. Somerville, T. Courtney, and H. Hall ("Daily Telegraph"), P. D. S. Murray (representing Sir Hubert Murray, Governor of Papua), P. Courtney, E. J. Forbes, J. Don-nelly, P. Coonan, W. J. Spruson, J. J. Taylor, J. P. McCarthy, A. M. B. Clarke. J. P. Hickey, H. Bartier, W. Bourke, J. Carroll, T. Brewer, J. Beatty, Darrehy, R. Caldwell, T. Bergin. S A. Burns, D. Quinn, R. S. Quinn, Jones, Chapman, W. O'Brien, A. T. Butler, and representatives of the Marist Brothers.
A large number of floral tributes were sent, including a wreath from the Institute of Journalists. OBITUARY. (1926, April 6). The Sydney Morning Herald(NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 8. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article16268252
MR P. E. QUINN.
A splendid type of citizen and a man well respected in every sphere of the State's commercial and professional life, Mr. Patrick E. Quinn, brother of the well known Mr. Roderic Quinn, passed away at Manly after several weeks illness at the age of 64 years. Mr. Quinn, who left a widow and daughter, was a man of broad capacity. A well-informed and cultured journalist, he edited a newspaper at Narrabri at 20 years of age, and subsequently served on several Sydney newspapers, commencing with the 'Illustrated Sydney News,' now defunct. Until recently he was on the editorial staff of 'The Daily Telegraph,' where his writings were distinguished by force, clarity, and a sure literary touch. He wrote much verse of high quality, and it was a matter for regret among his friends that he never troubled to publish these poems in book form. He did achieve two publications, however, one a textbook on art that has been used in schools in Australia and abroad, and the once well-known cantata, 'Captain Cook,' written in collaboration with Mr. J. Delany. Verse-writing, it is to be noted, is strongly implanted in the Quinn family; Mr. Quinn's brother, Roderic, is well known in this capacity, and so also is his daughter, Miss Marjorie Quinn. For six years Mr. Quinn was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly, having entered politics at the beginning of the present century as member for the Bligh Division, Sydney. Politics, however, was not his forte, for though a thoughtful and broad-minded debater,- he was too retiring a spirit for the hurly burly. Subsequently (in 1912) Mr. Quinn became Deputy Trade Commissioner for New South Wales in the United States, a position he held with credit to himself, and advantage to his homeland for six years. MR. P. E. QUINN. (1926, April 8).Freeman's Journal (Sydney, NSW : 1850 - 1932), p. 19. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article116760230
MANLY BY THE SEA. - Holiday Attractions
Lulled by breezes, serene and tender,
Set by surges and snow-white sands,
Crowned with beauty and clad in splendour,
Matchless Manly for ever stands.
— Roderic Quinn.
MANLY, the Village by the Sea, I occupies a peerless place among the world's watering places, and may truly be called the Deauville of the Southern seas. By reason of its unique situation, of nature's lavish gifts, and of the fine civic spirit of Its citizens, it has become the Commonwealth's greatest national play-ground and the Mecca of tourists from overseas. It is surrounded on all sides by scenery of exquisite beauty which provides the visitor with an ever-changing panorama of unrivalled beauty. The kaleidoscopic delights of the French Riviera may he visualised in the pine fringed golden sands lapped by the blue waters of the i Pacific. and' Sydney Harbor, which at night gleams with myriads of twinkling lights from headlands and ferries, is reminiscent of Venice at carnival time. For range of vision and variety of scene, the views around Manly are unequalled. It is, of course, the starting point for excursions through- out the district. There is no more entrancing marine drive in the world , than that from Manly to Palm Beach. Golden beaches and glorious seascape 'scenes dazzle the lopr'st in their wonderful prolusion. The magnificent girdle of hills provide vistas of scenic beauty, and the lovely palmgroves at Bilgola, Avalon and Palm Beach are a poet's dream and an artist's delight: A variation may be made by a picnic on the beautiful Narrabeen Lakes.
Further down, the reaches of Pitt-water unfold their liveliness. This is a massive and magnificent- sheet of water, which, .with Scotland Island close at hand, and Lion Island in the distance, always makes a grand and inspiring spectacle. Pittwater may he viewed from a thousand points, and each possesses some new beauty, j some new charm. The famous Pittwater Regatta is an inspiring sight. The joys of sailing, rowing, swimming, and fishing, may be enjoyed to the heart's content. Barrenjoey Head and the Lighthouse are always objects of interest, and further afield lie the glorious grounds and heights of Kuring-gai Chase, a national park whose virgin grandeur makes, a wonderful and memorable appeal.
Manly enjoys a matchless climate throughout the year. During the heat of summer the' thermometer registers an average of about seven degrees less than prevails in the City, and correspondingly higher readings during the winter months. For this reason, and because of the purity of its atmosphere and the total absence of fogs, and dust, Manly is becoming equally popular as an ideal- winter and charming summer resort.
THE EPIC OF MANLY.
Manly is intimately connected with the first scenes of the great drama of Australian colonisation. When, on January 2, 1788, Captain Phillip, in the first fleet which came to Australia, worked his way through the majestic heads in - ship's boats, he came upon Manly Grove. How magnificent must have been the panorama in that dawn day of our history! On May 15 of the same year, in a letter to the British Government —the first letter ever written from Australia-Captain" Phillip told the story of Manly—:— "The boats, in passing near a point of land in the harbour, were seen by a number of men, and some of them waded into the water unarmed, received what was offered them, examined the boats with a curiosity that gave me a pinch higher opinion of them than I had |formed from the behaviour of those seen- in Captain. Cook's voyage, and their confidence and manly behaviour made me give the name of Manly Cove to this place."
For upwards of 20 years its discovery, Manly remained in its primitive' state. There was scant settlement in 1836, "the Village," being only a collection of huts, and the' population numbering 43, and in 1856 there were only three cottages on the Corso, and only 12 families in the whole village. The distance from Sydney and the lack of adequate services greatly retarded progress, but the year 1877 marked the dawn of a new era, the incorporation of the Municipality on January 6, 1877, having inaugurated the day when "the old order changeth --yielding place to new."
Who, even fifty years ago, could have forecast the growth of Manly to its present proportions and Importance as a residential area? Manly, with its Wonderful Corso, its delightful beach, its splendid gas, electricity, water and sewerage services, and every convenience for the comfort of visitors and ratepayers?
THE OCEAN BEACH
The Ocean Beach, which extends from South Steyne to Queenscliffe, is the most popular surf beach in Australia, and one of which the people are justly proud. A beautiful avenue of pines extending the full length provides a delightfully cool resting place in the summer heat. At South Steyne, thousands of people daily throng the beach because of its proximity to the ferry wharf, and here up-to-date dressing sheds are provided and plans are already being prepared for very heavy outlay in the construction of more commodious sheds. Here, also, the Manly Band plays in the fine rotunda each Sunday and on special occasions. At North Steyne, which is fast becoming the rendezvous of thousands of surfers and picnic parties, the promenade has been vastly Improved in recent months, whilst the sea wall Is being extended along this portion of the beach. Comfortable bathing sheds are provided and an efficient Life Saving Club looks after the interests of bathers. The Surf and Life Saving Clubs of Manly beach have large memberships and constant attention and watchfulness is maintained. The surf boats are in regular commission, manned by expert oarsmen, so that the safety of bathers is in good hands. Many thrilling hours are spent by these expert surfmen in the fascinating sport of aquaplaning, which adds also to the enjoyment of visitors.
ON THE HARBOR SIDE.
Perhaps from the swimmer's point of view, and also that of the learner, the fine shark-proof swimming pool which has been enclosed on the harbor side of Manly, is one of its chief attractions. Extending from the Manly Ferry wharf, to the West Esplanade, it is the largest enclosed swimming pool in the world and It Is a fine sight to see thousands of bathers, from the youngest child to the oldest man, sporting in the sparkling Waters of the harbor on a warm day. Floats are provided at intervals and provide ample room for a dozen or more bathers to sport around or rest on, whilst springboards and diving towers of all heights also are provided for the more venturesome bathers.. Temporary dressing sheds, have been provided while the more substantial permanent structure is completed. These should be in readiness for the coming season.
The Port Jackson and Manly Ferry Co. Port Jackson and Manly Ferry Co. Is responsible for the construction of this fine enclosure, and is to be congratulated on its enterprise. Notwithstanding the growing popularity of the swimming pool, however the wonderful Municipal Baths are thronged during the summer months by hundreds of swimmers, and here the big swimming carnivals of the season are contested. The baths are fitted with up-to-date dressing sheds and are provided with diving towers and springboards of all heights. The greatest reason for the rapid growth in the popularity of Manly in recent years, apart front the natural beauty of the surroundings, undoubtedly Is the convenient and popular ferry service from Circular Quay, provided by the Port Jackson and Manly Ferry Co., a company which has been indelibly associated with the history of the popular resort. The company has a splendid fleet of steamers which run every few minutes and from which travellers are
given a wonderful view , of the harbor and, its foreshores. The trip only occupies 35 minutes each way, and the charge of 6d for adults and 1d for children makes it one of the cheapest trips for the mileage in the world The harbor adjacent to Manly especially lends itself to- boating, rowing and sailing, and all kinds of- craft ere available for hire. Particularly , at the week-ends, this portion of the harbor is packed with craft.
SPORT AT MANLY.
Apart from the pleasures of surfing swimming and boating, Manly caters for almost every branch of sport. Bowls, cricket, golf, tennis and croquet clubs all are flourishing, and provision is made for accommodation for visitors. Gilbert Park is right in the centre of the town, and here the first grade and other competition cricket matches are played. The oral is a fine one, and a big stand provides accommodation tot spectators. Manly Bowling Club greens are also situated in Gilbert Park and are the Mecca of the bowler. The greens are in great condition, and a big club house caters well for the social side of the game. In another portion of the Park, a women's croquet club is well established and has a large membership. As in the case of other sporting bodies, the Croquet Club makes the entertainment of visitors its special province". Probably no prettier setting could be provided than that which was selected for.the Manly Golf Links, situated about one mile from the post office. The links may toe reached either by car or 'bus. a service passing right by the club house.. .Having a large membership, the links are always thronged by enthusiastic golfers. A magnificent club house is situated at a point overlooking a beautiful panorama; and practically the whole of the links can be watched from the verandah, whilst in the distance can be seen the heights of Queenscliffe and North Manly. The committee of this club extends a cordial welcome to all visitors. For the convenience of tennis players, Manly provides numerous clubs with courts spread all over the district, with a very lively association to bind them into a harmonious whole. Chief amongst these is the Manly Lawn Tennis Court, with its grass courts, but there are also hard court clubs at North Harbor, Balgowlah, Rosebery and Taratah,. Country-visitors are advised to get in touch with either the association or club secretaries.
At night, Manly provides almost every form of entertainment that can be desired, with its theatres, picture shows and dance halls, whilst anyone desiring quiet reading will find ample facilities provided by the Circulating and Municipal Library, the Manly Literary Institute and the Soldiers' Memorial Hall. Special rates are provided for visitors from the country. ACCOMMODATION SHOULD BE BOOKED
Although Manly provides many fine hotels, palatial flats, guest houses and every kind of residential accommodation, in the height of the season it is frequently found that it is difficult to book in at short notice in the -more popular establishments, and the country visitor is urged to make sure of his accommodation by booking in advance. To enable this to be done, -a -comprehensive list of the more important establishments Is –given on another page.
MANLY SWIMMING POOL, SITUATED ON HARBOR BEACH.
MANLY BY THE SEA. - Holiday Attractions (1932, November 5). Wagga Wagga Express (NSW : 1930 - 1939), p. 8. Retrieved fromhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article207520528
Roderic Quinn's Poems And Prose For Manly, Beacon Hill, Dee Why And Narrabeen - Threads Collected and Collated by A J Guesdon, 2017. Originally run in Issue 299 - 10 Year Celebrations 2020