Frazer Memorial Church, Springwood

Frazer Memorial Church c.1910the jacaranda tree in front is newly planted In the early 1890s Springwood’s Presbyterians were on the pastoral fringes of their Church. Few in number and without a building, they had been worshiping God for a number of years in a variety of makeshift locations – in the open air beneath a clump of turpentine trees, in the lounge of the Oriental Hotel, and on the screened verandah of Braemar, the private home of one of their congregation. By 1896, however, things had changed. A picturesque church fronted the Western Road in the centre of town, its … Continue reading Frazer Memorial Church, Springwood

Remembrance: Springwood District Honor Roll 1914–1919

The official unveiling of the Board was performed on Anzac Day 1921, in the grounds of the Springwood Public School where it was hung temporarily against a background of Flags of the Empire, with the Australian flag most prominent. It was intended to move it to a permanent position in the School of Arts. More than 300 people assembled for the ceremony, which was performed by Cr Savage, President of the Blue Mountains Shire. He had been present at a memorial service at Katoomba the previous Sunday and had met Sir Charles Rosenthal who had said in his speech at … Continue reading Remembrance: Springwood District Honor Roll 1914–1919

Private Francis Smith (1793-1836)

  Head and foot stones from the grave of Francis Smith Springwood Cemetery (Blue Mountains City Library)   Francis Smith was born at Bromashall, Middlesex, in 1793. On 6 December, 1813, he enlisted in the 4th Foot of the King’s Own Regiment, which was engaged in the fighting against the armies of the Emperor Napoleon in Spain. The following year he proceeded with the regiment to North America and participated in the Battle of Bladensburg and the capture of Washington; then accompanied the regiment south to New Orleans. The 4th sustained heavy losses against Andrew Jackson and half their number … Continue reading Private Francis Smith (1793-1836)

The Catholic Bushwalking Club and the Shrine to Our Lady of the Way at Springwood

“From its earliest days in 1943, the Catholic Bushwalking Club fostered the idea of a shrine to Our Lady of the Way. In the Tenth Anniversary Catholic Bushwalker magazine, it is recorded that enthusiasm for the idea gained momentum when on Walk No 266a (on Sunday, 26th September, 1947) a beautiful grotto was discovered in Rocky Creek, a tributary of Katoomba Creek. In due course a special block of Carrara marble was imported from Italy on the order of Fr Coughlan (it was the same material from which Michelangelo’s famous ‘Pieta’ was sculpted) and a statue modelled on the fresco … Continue reading The Catholic Bushwalking Club and the Shrine to Our Lady of the Way at Springwood

The Coo-ee March, 1915, “The biggest wash-up I ever heard of!”

Coo-ees march through Springwood “The Allies”, said the editor of the Blue Mountains Echo of 13 August 1915, “can make no further progress in the Dardanelles until reinforced with troops. Our own men there are calling for assistance.” One response to the desperate need for reinforcements originated in Gilgandra in October 1915 with 26 men, the brain wave of local plumber WT (Bill) Hitchen, captain of the Gilgandra Rifle Club and his brother Richard. The Coo-ee March was the first of many privately organised recruiting marches of the time, which gathered recruits as they progressed and became known as snowball … Continue reading The Coo-ee March, 1915, “The biggest wash-up I ever heard of!”