Saturday, 30 April 2011

Christine’s Ideas

Today I met with Christine Courtney who runs the Sea Witch shop on Lipson Street. This is a shop for sailing ship and port lovers, for sure… I have been building up courage to go in knowing that it would be very difficult to drag myself away again…

Christine is an absolute gold mine of information, and knows all the material and books in the shop inside out (having written or helped write and collate them all you can understand why).

Christine’s suggestions and ideas for material to represent in Port Inhabited:

  • Wreck of the Admella – a devastating wreck on 6th August 1859 off the coast of SA near Carpenters Rocks (near Victorian Border, Mt Gambier area). The news of the survivors hanging on to the wreck in strong seas for many days, reached Adelaide a few days later, and it is written that men met at the Clubhouse hotel in Port Adelaide to work out what to do to assist the survivors. What was reported in the newspapers? What did they do to assist? How did it affect the people of Port Adelaide? Who sailed the Corio that set out to help with the rescue?
  • Sawtell – a local optician and astronomer. He published a nautical almanac and a book called star twinkles.
  • A terrible story about an Aboriginal man being horsewhipped for chatting up a white woman in 1900 – awful days!
  • Explorers rowing down the Port River, many many rowboats over the years crossing.
  • The day of Foundation – terrible dust storms and rails parting.
  • Hainsborough (?) – (Christine was related?) helped to start the wharfies union, set them a space in the auctioneers to meet until they could establish their own premises. **