Darling St Balmain, circa 1908
Bondi Junction music shop,
Glebe Point Rd, circa 1910
Newtown Bridge, circa 1908
Redfern St, Redfern, circa 1909
Charing Cross, circa 1920
Randwick Racecourse trams, c1920
I acquired the Werrong Lane place I found an old sea trunk in the ceiling.
It was full of ancient letters, curious nick-nacks, bits of somebody's World
War One uniform and some beautiful photographs of a Sydney that was at once
familiar but long-vanished.
Old photos challenge a detective's skill. I spent many idle hours using
the evidence frozen by the lens to establish when each of the photos was
most likely taken.
have to know when key buildings were constructed or torn down, when tram
lines were opened, what men and women were wearing and when businesses came
on the scene or disappeared.
These are some of my favourites. Most of them were taken between 1905 and
1910, a couple are from shortly after World War One.
pictures for enlargement and details.
was happening in the world at the time these photos were taken?
In 1905 the Japanese shocked the world by defeating the Russian empire
on land and sea. A revolution broke out in Russia and the first workers'
soviet was formed in Moscow under the leadership of Leon Trotsky, only
to be crushed by the Tsar's troops. In Britain, Asprin went on sale for
the first time.
In 1908 the General Motors Corporation had been formed in Detroit
and Henry Ford put the Model T Ford into production. The first paper cups
were manufactured, Thomas Edison won patent rights for the movie projector
and Albert Einstein proposed the quantum theory of light. There was much
troubles in the Balkans, but that was a long way from Australia and would
never affect us ... or so we thought.
In 1909 compulsory military service and old age pensions were intruduced.
There was more trouble in the Balkans but Serbia backed down. The British
House of Lords ruled it illegal for trade union funds to sponsor Labor
members of Parliament, Bleriot flew across the English Channel and the
first electric toasters appeared.
In 1910 the Chinese army invaded Tibet and the Dalai Lama fled
to India, Japan annexed Korea and the tango became all the rage. The first
radio receivers went on sale in the US (in kit form) and Edison demonstrated
"talking pictures". The First World War was still four years
Street, circa 1905
Circular Quay, circa 1910
Enmore Terminus, circa 1908
Station, circa 1907
Railway Square, circa 1908
Railway Square, circa 1913
Railway Square, circa 1922