Top 5 posts for 2018 on Listening to the Past

The top five posts for 2018 are revealed. Read More …

From rocket launches to the Australian Space Agency: South Australia’s long history of space activities

With the announcement in December 2018 that Adelaide will be home to the new Australian Space Agency, it is timely to reflect on South Australia’s more than 70 year involvement in space activities. Memories of Woomera In 1947, the Australian Read More …

The ghosts of Belconnen

Some places are more likely than others to elicit ghostly experiences.  The former Belconnen Naval Transmitting Station, or Bels, in Canberra was one such place. Bels was the most powerful radio transmitting station in the southern hemisphere.  It operated 24 Read More …

From the Monte-Carlo dance to the Veleta waltz: country dances and bands

Country dances have been a major source of entertainment for decades, as described in my previous post, but what types of dances were popular last century, and who provided the dance music? In an oral history interview, Harry Portlock talked Read More …

Dancing the night away

Dances were popular entertainment in cities and country towns through much of the twentieth century. Often the dances served as fund-raisers for local community groups, or during World War II, for the Fighting Forces Comfort Fund and the Red Cross. Read More …

Going to the pictures

Before the introduction of television in Australia in 1956, going to the pictures was a popular entertainment. The first permanent cinema in Adelaide was established in 1908: West’s Olympia Theatre at 91 Hindley Street.*  A further fifteen cinemas opened in Read More …

From gum-studded paddock to superb sports oval

Describing the Meadows oval as a sports oval in the early- to mid-1900s is probably being overly generous. In common with ovals in other small towns, it had its shortcomings. Harry Portlock recalled that in the 1940s: The oval was Read More …

Big uncluttered skies: remembering a childhood pastime of looking at the stars

Sue Gibbs and Peter Zajicek spent their childhoods in Woomera, 450 km north of Adelaide, in the 1960s and 1970s.  The isolation of Woomera made it an ideal place to look at the stars, free from the light pollution of Read More …

A changeable landscape: recollections of Woomera

Woomera is a dry place – most of the time.  Sometimes however it is inundated with rain, and then the landscape changes dramatically.  Plants that have laid dormant come to life, and seeds from ephemeral plants germinate and grow. I Read More …

Choosing suitable audio equipment for oral history interviews: perspectives of an audio engineer

Peter Kolomitsev is an audio engineer working at the State Library of South Australia whom we met in previous posts, talking about his job and providing his top tips for making excellent quality oral history recordings.  In this post, I Read More …