Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Historical Technology Sucks..................

Yesterday I bought home a pile of floppy disks from the Research Rooms to add to our Inhouse Index. I was quite excited as these things are over 10 years old and so what they held was going to be a mystery.. 
For those of you who don t know what a floopy
is ... this is them

So I dropped Cheyenne at school and came thinking yep start extracting the info and save it to the hard drive we use for the Index then made a coffee and prepared for the fun. 

First couple were okay opened okay then saved and converted them. Started reading the titles thinking OMG if there is what I think is on there I will be in heaven... BUUUUUUUUUUUUT

Upon opening them there would be a list but no there would be the full family history on one of the most well known names in the Howard area.. inclusive of some local names we know.. 

So I would be extracting like mad and then I would find a format that wouldnt open.. I don't have the program and I am normally a fairly computer savvy person but this can be so frustrating.. after many curse words and the dog escaping with his tail between his legs I would save the files and move on to the next. 

On of the coolest things I have found with doing these things is you find some of the most interesting documents. Today I found copies of extracts of court notices, judges journals, short stories written about different things. But one of the ones that I found interesting was the 

Maryborough stands on the Mary River. (first named the Wide Bay River), which was discovered by Andrew Petrie in 1842.  The area was first thought to be good sheep grazing, and many of the first ventures were sheep farms.  The area has now become famous as a centre of the Timber Industry.

                Many other attempts were made to settle the area until about 1848 when there were a number of settlements along the river, including a wool store (1847), a store and inn (1848). Many men were engaged in the timber trade.

                With the arrival at the old township in 1849 of authority in the person of J.C. Bidwel, the coming of Police was inevitable.  Among the first settlers at this time was John Harwood who became the settlements first Constable.  His wife was the settlements first white woman, and his son and daughter were the first white children born here.  Harwood who was appointed in 1850, later left the force to become a mail carrier, he then rejoined to serve for twelve years with the mounted police.

                The settlement continued to grow and in 1849-1850 surveyor H.H. Labatt surveyed the area. In 1852 a police barracks and compound was established on the site of the present Town Hall.  Chief Constable McAdam was in charge with a detachment of mounted troupers.  They were responsible for the whole of the Maryborough, Wide Bay and Burnett area.

                In 1859 Maryborough was gazetted a Port of Entry (also year of separation of the Colony of Queensland).  Robert Bingham Sheridan arrived to be Chief Officer of Customs, Water Police Magistrate, Immigration Agent and Harbour Master.

                With the advent of separation on December 10th. 1859, first organised Police Force of Queensland was formed.  It consisted of three Lieutenants, eleven Second Lieutenants, nine Sergeants and one hundred and twenty Troopers.  These Troopers were uniformed in dark green trousers with red stripe, dark green shirts and black caps with red bands.

                Although Queensland was declared a separate Colony then, the newly formed Police Force still functioned under New South Wales legislation until a separate Police Act, applicable to Queensland was promulgated in 1863.  This Act took effect as from 1st January 1864.  In 1848 there was a Native Mounted Police Force, approved by the Colonial Government, recruited by Frederick Walker, then an Inspector of Police in the New South Wales Police Force.  A special tax was levied to maintain this force and it was disbanded seven years later.
                In 1857 a new concept was adopted, a mounted native police force for where aboriginals were troubling white settlers.  A detachment was stationed in Maryborough, their uniform black with a white topee.  They were trained in horsemanship and marksmanship and their ability as trackers was legendary.  One of their duties here was to watch over the doing of people of their own race especially those on walkabout, but they became arrogant bullies where their own people were concerned.

                After some of them committed a particularly nasty murder on the Tinana side of the river, an outrage witnessed by Magistrate Sheridan, the black troopers were moved out of town to a place at first called Police Camp, later Coopers Camp, and later still Owanyilla.  From there they supervised the wandering tribes of aborigines, hunted the desperadoes who held up coaches on the Gympie Road and also rode escort to the wagonette and coach which brought Gympie gold to Maryborough.  They were later transferred from this district.

                A census of 1851 showed 406 people in the Wide Bay and Burnett District.  By 1856 there were 641, and by 1860 there were 660 in Maryborough and 3,246 in the whole district.

                In 1860 the first Circuit Court held its hearings at the Fitzroy Hotel.  The town of Maryborough and District continued to grow at a fast rate.

                A watchhouse was built in 1863.  In 1864 the town had one Inspector, one sub-Inspector, one Sergeant and nine Constables.  The Police establishment grew to include offices, barracs, harness rooms, stables and yards, and an Inspector’s residence.  The first Police Commissioner for Queensland was D.T. Seymour.  Between 1862 and 1890,  21,000 immigrants landed in Maryborough.  Gold was discovered in Gympie in 1867.  James Nash reported the find in Maryborough on October 16th, and the town was idle within a week

                A Police Gold escort was established between Gympie and Maryborough on January 28th 1868.  A Sergeant Lloyd was the Officer in Charge of the first escort.  This escort was to run regularly every two weeks until 1869, and then it was run every month.  The first record kept of such escorts was in 1872.  During that year  47,578 oz. of gold was escorted for a fee of 1,098 pounds.

                In 1877 the Police compound was the scene of the execution by hanging of two kanakas found guilty of the rape and attempt murder of Mrs McBryde, whose husband was an overseer at Lindah Plantation.

                By 1879 Maryborough had grown to become the 2nd most important centre in the Colony (Qld).  A railway was connected to the town in 1881.

                On December 8th 1882 there was an application made to have the Police paddock at Maryborough fenced as land speculators were agitating to have the land open for sale.  At that time the reserve for the Police paddock was 84 acres fronting Walker Street.  (near were the Hospital now stands).  The Police District of Wide Bay was proclaimed in 1885.

                In 1886 anapplication was made for three water filters to be installed for drinking water at the Maryborough Station on the recommendation of the Government Medical Officer, as many of the men were going down with sickness as a result of drinking germ infected water.  Typhoid fever was prevalent.  As late as February 1914, there was a Constable Moloney who had to be removed from the Barracks at Maryborough to the Hospital suffering with Typhoid.

                In 1893 there were record floods in February and again in March.  The waters peaking above 40 feet.  It is a matter of records of the time that Police worked heroically day and night to rescue people and save lives.  The Mayor and citizens of Maryborough presented an illuminated address to a Sergeant King which acknowledged “The co-operation of your comrades in this rescue work”.

                Records of early Police in Maryborough were lost in these floods which also affected Police records in Brisbane.

                In 1901 the Municipal Council arranged a land exchange with the State Government which resulted in the site being occupied by the Police being made available for a new town hall and a reserve across the road being allocated to the Police.

                In 1908 a new Police Station was built in Lennox Street, replacing the the original Police Establishment built on the site where the Town Hall stands.  This station much altered and added to is still in use today.  Maryborough was still the District Headquarters for a large area and strength at that time was:            Maryborough 15 men: Bundaberg 6 men:             Hawkwood 1 man:  Gayndah 3 men: Yengarie 1 man:  Mt.Perry 2 men:  Gympie 7 men: One Mile 3 men:    Tiaro 1 man:  Kilkivan 1 man:  Gin Gin 1 man:    Nanango 2 men:  Noosa 1 man.

                In 1911 the Council handed over Traffic control to the Police.  Motor cars were making their appearance and horses were rearing and bolting at the sight of them.  There were many bicycles in use that they appeared to represent danger to life and limb.

                Local suburban stations at Newtown, Granville and Tinana were closed in  1961, radio patrol cars being substituted.
                The History of Police in the Maryborough area has played a large part in the growth not only of Maryborough, but the birth of a State, and has played its part in the growth of the Queensland Police Force.  One of the most notable of local policemen was Mounted Trooper, later Sergeant, Thomas King.  He joined the Queensland Mounted Police in 1867 at the age of 15 years.  He was stationed in the Wide Bay and Burnett District and was a member of the Gympie Gold Escorts.  As he grew older he became an outstanding Bushman and a tracker whose skill was of a degree rarely found in a white man.  One of the first exploits which brought him notice was the tracking through the bush for three weeks and the arrest of the Aboriginal thief and murderer Johnny Campbell at Tewantin in 1878.  ‘Black’ Campbell as he was known was hanged in Brisbane in August 1880.  When the Victorian Government requested trackers to help track the Kelly gang, King was sent with with black trackers from Frazer Island who had been named ‘Human Bloodhounds’.  Later Trackers used by the Victorian Government from Frazer Island  ‘Willie’ and ‘Jackie’, deserted from the Police post at Benalla in April 1891, and committed two murders in the Dora Dora area near Albury.  They became famous as the ‘Dora Dora Blacks’, and were hunted relentlessly.  They eluded their pursuers and returned to Queensland where King had looking for them.  ‘Willie’ was caught in Bundaberg by Sen. Const. Nat King, brother of Tom.  ‘Jacky’ fled but was later taken 60 miles north of Mackay on February 12th 1894 by both King brothers.

                Time has changed since the early days in the Maryborough District, the City has grown and industry has become established.  The motor vehicle has taken the place of the horse, but a Policeman’s job is still the same.  ‘The protection of life and property and the preservation of public tranquility and the absence of crime will alone prove if these efforts have been successful’.  These words were first quoted in 1828 by Lord Row, an early Police Commissioner in London, but they show that there has been very few changes in the work of a Policeman..


I did find today it is so hard to find a converter if your trying to open old files from Works to Office but I did find one extension that works great with WPS to Word files..  and if your looking for a program to extract Zipped files try Free ARC for old zipped files. 

So tomorrow we will see what pops out of the files and we are doing old photos so I will be able to update you on how to convert film to digital images.. Stay tuned. 

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