Byaduk Methodist Church Jubilee

With the Hamilton Spectator (1914-1918) now online at Trove, I am finding some good articles about my family members. One of those articles included ggg grandfather James Harman  and the Byaduk Methodist Church Jubilee in May 1914.

I have outlined the history of the Byaduk Methodist Church and the part  James played, in the post M is for….Methodist, and this new find further confirms what I knew.  The Byaduk correspondent remarked that James, “who claims and justly so, to be the father of the movement” in the town was present at the celebration dinner.  James spoke, reminiscing about the early days and his time as a lay preacher.  I wish there had been video cameras in those days.  What I would give for that information.

Some of the local pioneers to return for the Jubilee were Thomas Harper, Samuel Clark, John Poynton.  Daniel Tyers, then 94,  was also in attendance at the dinner, joining 200 others in the Byaduk Mechanics Institute.  The evening had a jam-packed program of speeches, recitation and song.

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METHODIST JUBILEE AT BYADUK. (1914, May 9). Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 8. Retrieved September 18, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article119828889

METHODIST JUBILEE AT BYADUK. (1914, May 9). Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 8. Retrieved September 18, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article119828889

BYADUK METHODIST CHURCH

BYADUK METHODIST CHURCH

In 1907, some of the early Byaduk pioneers gathered for a photo outside the Byaduk Methodist Church.  In the back row, 2nd left was Samuel Tyers,  James and Jonathan Harman,  5th and 6th (both were listed as J. Harman, helpful) Thomas Harper, 9th from the left.  Daniel Tyers was In the 2nd row, 5th from the left.

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BYADUK PIONEERS 1907, Photographer G. Earney. Image courtesy of the Hamilton History Centre.

In the News – 13 January 1905

Western District pioneers were exposed to most of the elements Australia offers including flood, drought and fire.  Each had its own devastating effect on their lives and livelihood, particularly those on the land.

By summer 1905, my Harman family of Byaduk had already experienced bushfire,  Fires in 1888, 1896, 1901, and 1902 had seen the loss of stock, grazing land and life.  Bushfires today are just as devastating but the pioneers of the 19th century and early 20th century did not have the weather forecasting, firefighting equipment and communications now available.  When a fire went close to their homes at Byaduk on 11 January 1905, one can only imagine how they managed.

The fire broke away in the stony ground near the Byaduk Caves and travelled southerly at a rapid pace.

NEAR BYADUK CAVES.

NEAR BYADUK CAVES.

The first Harman hit was George Harman, son of James Harman.  His property Quetta was on the north-eastern corner of the Hamilton-Port Fairy Road and what is now Harman’s Road. The fire crossed the main road on to his father’s property Mt Pleasant and Frank Kinghorn’s The Island next door. Alfred Harper, lost all the timber for a new house, while others lost haystacks. Forty men were fighting the fire but wind changes made it almost impossible for them.  The Portland Guardian reported on the fire on 13 January 1905.

HEAVY LOSSES AT BYADUK. (1905, January 13). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved January 11, 2012, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63691042