The Nostalgia Page.
I recently came across some 50+yr old photos and paper cuttings. Most of the photos were taken in the early 1930s and the papers 1920 - 1957. Come with me on a trip down memory lane. For those that weren't born before WW2, it will have to be a somewhat imaginary trip.
- Remember when trucks only had 8 horse power.
- Then the motive power was doubled.
- Remember when the roads were softer than the wheels that ran on them. At Windsor.
- Remember when trucks sometimes needed a haircut.
- Remember before the red electrics, these ran everywhere, every 20 minutes. At Newtown.
- Remember when Sydney got pollution-free electric public transport for the city. What happened to it?
- Remember when Pitt St. Sydney was a real street with trams as well.
- Remember when Railway Square actually had rails in it.
- Remember when you could look down on Railway Square from the Railway Clock Tower.
- Remember when Trams were very airconditioned.
- Tram workers in front of the air-conditioned section of a tram. Notice the wooden slat seats.
- Trams resting in their lair, waiting for the next peak period.
- Remember when Trams ran up into the Central railway building.
- Remember when Central Railway platforms had no overhead wires.
- Remember when Sydney had a war Museum (WW1). This can also be seen in the previous pix.
When the National War Museum was built in Canberra, the contents of Sydney's Museum was transferred to Canberra.
- Remember when steam-engines only had 6 wheels.
In 1937 this engine was converted to a steam crane and numbered 1076. It still exists at the NSWRTM at Thirlmere.
- Remember when the Cooks River railway bridge could lift up part of the rail-line to let the boats through.
- Remember the gauntlet track railway bridge over the Georges river at Como.
- Remember when there was no Sydney Harbour bridge. The traffic crossed the harbour on a non-tethered punt. That's Fort Denison (Pinchgut) dead in the centre of the background.
This punt, the "Koondooloo", had an interesting history. Built in 1924 in Scotland, she came out to Australia under her own steam. She was the largest of the car-ferries and worked in Sydney until replaced by the Bridge in 1932. It spent the time from 1936 to 1938 as a single deck showboat. In 1938 it had a second deck added and remained this way till 1943, when it was rebuilt as a powered barge. It then joined McArthur's Navy, flying the Stars & Stripes, carrying what ever was necessary round the shallow bays, inlets and islands of Papua/New Guinea in WW2. It survived the war and returned to Australia, working from 1950 as a car ferry on the Stockton run at Newcastle.
- Remember when the punt was too slow. We needed a Sydney Harbour bridge. How did they get all that steel up there?
- If you look closely at the next two pix you can see the huge bunch of big steel cables holding back each of the partly-built arch-ends. I wonder how many times the engineer, who decided how big the cables had to be, did his calculations. Remember there were no computers.
- Remember the buses of the harbour.
- Remember when a trip to Manly was an experience and you could lean over the inside rail, feel the heat and see the big marine steam-engine working. Or you could just sit outside and watch the bow-wave breaking a few feet away.
- Remember when, on a trip to Manly, you might even see one of these. With the way the world's going maybe we should get a few more.
- Remember when you could cross Parramatta Rd without getting knocked over. This is Camperdown and the sign says "Wait Here for Tram".
- Remember when travelling to Melbourne meant riding on this.
- Then on to Adelaide behind this.
- Then to Glenelg on this high-speed American tram.
- Then to Terowie on this.
- And back to Sydney on this.
- Remember when travelling to Newcastle meant riding behind one of these.
- Across the original Hawkesbury River bridge.
- Like this.
- Past picturesque Mullet Creek.
- And on to Newcastle and its formidable steel industry.
- Remember, during WW2, the big ships were conscripted to carry troops. Here is the Queen Mary dressed in grey, having a rest before it leaves Sydney Harbour. Only a handfull of people knew its destination, only the captain knew the route he was going to take. Just imagine this huge ship roaring along at 35knots, faster than the current road speed limit on Sydneys roads. You could ride a surf board on its bow-wave.
- Here's the Queen Elizabeth taking its turn.
- Remember when Bennelong Point was called Fort Macquarie and this was there before the Sydney Opera House.
- Remember Pyrmont swing bridge when it was a bridge.
- Remember when Sydney's Glebe Island swing bridge was just a bridge. Taken from the top of the wheat-silos.
- Remember Boofhead. This is 1949.
- Remember Bluey & Curly. Also 1949.
- Remember when you didn't need electricity to listen to your records. 1949
- Remember when the above was a good thing as Sydney didn't have much electricity after the war. 1950
- Remember when Luna Park was closed during WW2 to reduce the light on the harbour shores. 1946
- Remember when after the war Australia was in a bad way and the Federal Govt. actually did something to improve the situation. 1946
- Remember when some of the above wisdom continued on. 1951
- Remember when we had to be told that our medicine didn't contain strychnine. 1949
- Remember when it only took one of these to keep our little glamour girls happy. 1949
- Remember when you could give them food that was out of this world. 1949
- Remember 1969 when we had more than four banks (actually 13) and they all made a profit, even though Housing-Loans cost 5.5%, Savings-Book accounts received 2.75%, and they charged no transaction fees either.
- Remember when Coca-Cola was less than 5 cents a bottle. 1953
- Remember when Sydney had a picture show on every corner and people went to the "flicks" twice a week. 1946
- Remember when women loved to cook. 1954
- Remember when ice-cream came in a brick. 1953
- Remember, when you got lost in the bush, you could always eat your cigarette papers. 1941
- Remember when cars had gearsticks on the steering column and Australian-made radios in the dash. 1954
- Remember when no cars had gearsticks on the steering column. 1929
- Remember when Car ads told you the prices weren't going to drop. 1929
- Remember when Australian made corrugated iron roofed the country. 1929
- Remember when Tractors had steel tyres. 1929
- Remember when Advertisers had optimism and assumed the readers of The Australasian could afford to buy one of these during the Great Depression. Dec. 1929
- Remember when aeroplanes were toys and the real way to travel was by ship. 1929
- Remember when the Railway was proud of its thirty-eighters. 1952
- Remember when the latest home appliances looked like this. 1950
- Remember when we had three big airlines and they all made a profit. 1949
- Remember when the latest radio looked like this. 1957
- Remember when Television was new and exciting and we all wanted one. 1957
All Photos were taken with various box-cameras and are from the late Fred Yates collection.
© Gary Yates Locofonic Recordings Australia
This page first written 30-9-2001 last updated 3-11-2001.