Saturday, November 14, 2015

Did Sir Charles Kingsford Smith inspire my grandmother to travel?

What will historians be saying about us in 100 years time?  

Growing up. I always considered my grandmother to be very old fashioned.  She was a very strong lady, who was very matter of fact.

She NEVER struck me as an adventurer!  But now I wonder?

Lloyd, Hazel, Lorna & Eva Pilgrim
on Trix 1924
"I boarded with Aunty Alice while going to High School and had visions of being a teacher, but Mum was going through change of life and when she went down with measles, I had to go home at 14.  I only had 6 years of schooling, as we lived over 3 mls from the school.  At first we had to walk.  They kept me home till I was 8 and John was 6.  Then he [dad] bought a pony for us and we got boils in summer from horse sweat, as we rode bareback........While at High, I always went home for wk ends and often got a ride back with the minister on Sun.  If not I rode Trix in Monday morning – 10 miles.  Tied the reins up and let her go.  Once she didn’t arrive home so Dad went looking for her.  She had pulled in to a farmers stable.  It was a paddock away from his house and only worked there some times.  There was a dam, green feed and some chaff in the mangers.  This old Trix was cunning and would come up with the horses Sat and Sun but not wk days.  When we had holidays, it would put her out.  I had to go and catch her as my brother could not.  I think he was cunning too.  He had a horse later – Kit.  Dad would drive Kit and Tammy in the buggy and the fruit van (before he got a motor vehicle) and they were a flighty pair.   In the van, we all sat on a board across the width of it and no back.  It used to take us over an hour to trot into Nhill – 10 miles – with a load and under the hour to go home.  The horses were always in a hurry to get home.  I love horses and working dogs, but not lap dogs." Eva Scott (nee Pilgrim)


Imagine if you can..............You live on a farm with your family and the main form of transport is horse and buggy, which you take into town (Nhill) every Friday to do the shopping.  How would you feel seeing your first aeroplane?   Would you be excited at the new technology and the possibilities?  Or would you be worried about the safety? Would you have had the courage to go for a flight?  


Source: http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article203366719
The Age (Melbourne, Vic.:1854-1954),
Thursday 16 November 1933,page 10

8th November 1933 - Nhill
Southern Cross
From the album of Eva Scott (nee Pilgrim)

8th November 1933 - Nhill 
Southern Cross
From the album of Eva Scott (nee Pilgrim)

8th November 1933 - Nhill
Percival Gull Speed Plane
From the album of Eva Scott (nee Pilgrim)

 Nhill 1933
Gran's first plan ride (in the centre with white collar and cuffs wearing pilots hat) -  cost was 7/6 for 10 minutes

She rode a horse to school and needed to stay with her Aunty as the High School was too far from home (10 miles) and then 44 years later as a pensioner, she was able to fly to the other side of the world!

Imagine how Gran felt over 44 years later when she boarded an aeroplane bound for UK and Europe?

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23 comments:

  1. I think I might have been less afraid of the early planes than I am of small planes now.

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    1. I am not so sure. The safety today is pretty intense!

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  2. Flight certainly was was a real adventure back then! My aunt recalled the whole family going to see the arrival of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith in Christchurch on his first trans Tasman crossing in 1928, when she was about 7.

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    1. How amazing that must have been to them!

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  3. Things have changed so much. Greetings from New Zealand.

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    1. Technology has certainly changed the world!

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  4. I've thought about that same wonder of flight too when reading about early appearances of airplanes. I don't think we have a technology amazement in modern life that could match it.

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  5. It always astonishes me to think of the changes that have taken place within a human timespan. Isobel's Auntie Rhoda travelled to and from her farm in Canada on a horse. My grandfather has a pony and cart for his business, Your post illustrates this so well.

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    1. It makes me wonder what the next 50 years holds!

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  6. I'm STILL terrified of airplanes!

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    1. I can't say that I enjoy the take off and landing................but I am always glad to get to a new destination :)

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  7. Flying never was my thing, although, I did finally ventured on a plane in 2008, I was 58 years old!! I travel at least once or twice a year now by plane. Still don't like it, but it gets you there FAST!!!

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    1. Yes planes have made the world a lot smaller place :)

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  8. What a wonderful family story and the photos to go with it! I think she was a believer in the "gospel of aviation."

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    1. There are more adventure type photos in her album. Although she seemed old fashioned later in life, she certainly seemed to try new and different things that I would not have expected.

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  9. Gran would have never have thought as she rode her horse to school, what the future would hold.

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  10. What a lot of changes for her. But I suppose that as the years went on she changed with the times, and got used to the idea of planes. Going half across the world probably seemed nothing compared with that first ride!

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    1. I am saddened that we did not talk about these types of things when she was alive!

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  11. Wonderful story putting your family history into context and the amazing days of early aviation.

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  12. Wonderful story putting your family history into context and the amazing days of early aviation.

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