HOME OF THE LADY DENMAN - Local history isn't always about the big story - the everyday story of life in the early development of the region can be a fascinating, entertaining and educational journey.

31 August 2018


Because of a difficult problem with the blog site I have been unable to see any comments being made about any of the posts. I only found these today, sitting in the spam folder instead of the inbox. It's good to know other people are interested and appreciate the history.

Jen Littlechild's - MV Desikoko.
Hello, my father was assigned to Desikoko for a time during WWII.
He used to tell stories of being incognito & scouting the islands for Japanese radio transmitters, but never mentioned the islands. We know from his army records he arrived in Milne Bay, but no mention of Desikoko. The story has always been a fascination, wanting to fill the gaps. So interesting to read about Desikoko's connection to Rabaul, as my husband & I visited Old Rabaul Town 4 years ago, the day after the last erruption, & the whole place was in clean up mode. We stay at the Rabaul Hotel with Suzie, & explored the history & area for a week. We also went to Milne Bay & the Trobriands. Even if I had no idea exactly which islands dad had sailed to I got a good feel for the people, geography & history.
I would love to know if you have any more details of Desikoko's activities during WWII, & we must come  & visit the museum ONE day

Thank you
Jen Littlechild
Continue reading about the Desikiko.

Pemupukan Kacang Tanah has left a new comment on your post "Wrecked Navy Yacht.":

You took amazing photos.
Continue reading about the wrecked yacht.

Wrecked on Bowen Island.
Pemupukan Kacang Tanah.
Good post! thanks for sharing.
Continue reading about being wrecked on Bowen Island

Warwick Donnelly coments on - Nerriga
We suspect that these photos are of the home and blacksmiths shop of Thomas Donnelly. He is recorded as being both a blacksmith and a carrier, running a coach and mail service between Braidwood and Nowra from around 1870 and thew 1890's. He lived in Nerriga and married Elizabeth Ann Hollands in 1871. The Hollands family lived in Nerriga at the time, having moved there from Sutton Forest.
We are researching the Donnelly family background back to James Donnelly who arrive as a convict in 1798. Thomas is our great grandfather and James was his grandfather.
We would like to make contact with the current owners of the property and get any further information about the Donnellys and the Hollands in the Nerriga area, if anyone can help.
Thanks. Warwick Donnelly.
Continue reading about Nerriga.

Julian Armstrong  - The sinking of the SS Dandenong off Jervis Bay.

Very interesting. I have just found out that my 3x Great Uncle was a survivor of this terrible wreck, and his account of the disaster was perhaps the first passenger account to be published. I have attached a transcript from The Evening News (Sydney), 15 Sep 1876 (TROVE online newspapers).

Statement of Survivors

Mr. J.M. Hartley, a cabin passenger, tells us that there were three boats attached to the Dandenong, but that a considerable time elapsed before the first boat could be lowered— half-an-hour, he thinks — but the time very likely appeared to him longer than it really was. He also thinks the ship was not properly supplied with pumping apparatus, which was fitted to be worked
by steam. The passengers and crew worked hard to keep the water under, but finding the water was gaining on them rapidly, desisted, and the captain then gave orders to lighten the ship, and hoisted signals of distress.

Mr. Hartley is of opinion that Captain Irwin considered their only hope of safety lay in transhipping the passengers from the steamer to the barque; but nearly the whole of the passengers were afraid to trust themselves in the open boat. Mr. Winship, of Newcastle, was among those who refused to get into the boats. This reluctance is to be accounted for partly by the imminent danger of death in the boats, and partly from the hope that they could be saved in the captain's boat.

The first boat that left was smashed to pieces when near the vessel, but three or four managed to climb up the side by the aid of ropes. Mr. Hartley, like all the others, had a very narrow escape. He was almost unconscious in the water, but held on to a rope that was thrown him with that tenacity that can only spring from desperation. Somehow he managed to get the rope looped around his arm, and this enabled him to hold on a little longer. The last thing he remembers is being caught by the hair of the head and by the heels, and dragged on to the deck of the barque.

He speaks very highly of Captain Walker and the officers and crew of the barque Albert William, who showed the rescued passengers every possible kindness — gave up all their bunks, and remained without shelter themselves. Mr. Hartley has lost all he possessed. He was coming over to Sydney to start in the ironmongery trade. He was in business in the boot and shoe trade, opposite the Post Office in Melbourne.”

Thanks for your site, I will endeavour to visit your museum soon.

Julian Armstrong, Narooma NSW
Continue reading about the S.S. Dandenong

Jeff Laffite Jones  -  "The mystery of Scrimshaw":
This is the recently discovered secret of my family and ancestors. The secret was carved by my 7th great....great-grandfather on a scrimshaw Powder horn and passed down from father to son for 200 years. I am the first son to decode and decipher the secret and prove it (The Skeleton Horn)The scrimshaw powder horn was carved by my great....great-grandfather Chris Jones. The horn was carved with 309 masonic cryptic anagrams & picture puzzles that tell the secret of my family. My great...great- grandfather is George Washington's only son. Scott F. Wolter of the History Ch. paid for my DNA test to prove it's true. I am Viking descent Washington-Osborne, 72nd generation to Odin and Thor. Ref. ( The Pedigree And History Of The Washington Family: Derived From Odin, The Founder Of Scandinavia, B.C. 70 (1879) by Albert Welles) Kessinger Publishing's
Continue reading about the Scrimshaw

Daniel Reilly – "The tragic death of Thomas Speechley.":
A moving story from yesteryear with time marching on. Thank goodness some of the details are being preserved by your work.
Thanks Danny

Continue reading about Thomas Speechley

Akhila - "HMAS Creswell":
informative post! I really like and appreciate your work, thank you for sharing such a useful facts and information about base bay management strategies, keep updating the blog.
Continue reading about HMAS Creswell.

Anonymous - "Southern Pencillings - By the Raven.":
I enjoy what you guys are usually up too. This kind of clever work and coverage!
Keep up the fantastic works guys I've included you guys to
our blogroll.
Continue reading about Southern+Pencillings

Prince Arora - "The S.S. Wollumbin":
The blogs are really appreciable and one can trust the knowledge and information provided in the writing. The article you do produce on a weekly base really the best.
Continue reading about the S.S. Wollumbin

Chew Bacca - "Reported in the Brisbane Courier Mail 9th June 1891":
To bad about Miss Moss.
Continue reading about miss+moss


Chew Bacca - They both admitted they had eaten the unfortunate wretch” 1801
Those were the days!
Continue reading about .They both admitted they had eaten the unfortunate wretch.

Chew Bacca - "Violent, unrelenting spectacle across the headland":
wow! great photo.. must of been great to witness that in person
Continue reading about the Violent Spectacle.

Chew Bacca - "Woollamia Church….1934":
Awesome! kind of looks like Henry Thoreau's cabin at Walden pond in Massachusetts
Continue reading about Woollamia Church 

Chew Bacca - "Super Moon":
We enjoyed the same moon over here in california for a few evenings! Didnt know about the reasons for the occurence thanks for the information. Great photos!
Continue reading about the Supermoon 

Chewbacca - "Moona Moona Creek":
So cool! good to see these images being digitized and saved for the future
great history
Continue reading about Moona Moona creek.


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