Monday, February 26, 2018

Readers Write

I posted a pic on Saturday in connection with Blakehurst and captioned it “Princes Highway at Blakehurst near Tom Uglys Point, date unknown”.

This is the photograph:


I received an email from Kara O in respect of that photograph which has left me somewhat in awe:
Hi Otto 
Been a while since I made any comments though often tempted to even if just to say well done yet again. 
However, today the 'date unknown' on one of the photographs (post of Sat 24th) spurred me to take a closer look. 
Image in question is captioned: Princes Highway at Blakehurst near Tom Uglys Point, date unknown. 
Zooming in on the group of four people walking along the road (middle of pic) I was trying to determine whether the adult male was a sailor and yes he is. Looking beyond the group there is a banner or sign, partly obscured by a telegraph pole, which looked very much like it said Sarah Bennett. You should find this linked article interesting - in fact I have a feeling I have read about 'Cocky' before and the most likely place? Bytes Daily. 
https://dictionaryofsydney.org/entry/the_cocky_bennett_story 
Anyway, Sarah BOWDEN (nee THOMPSON) married Charles C BENNETT (Sydney, 1890). She was the widow of Joseph Clement BOWDEN (m 26 Jun 1875) who died 29 Jul 1889 and is buried at the Rookwood Necropolis. Getting back to the sign there are other words under Sarah's name - Dover Point. A google search found an image on Pinterest:

https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/799740846303384289/visual-search/?x=16&y=8&w=530&h=340 
And a little more looking found a plan relating to renovations in 1909.  
Thanks for providing a welcome break from catching up with work related research (which, much as I love it, is sometimes necessary to sort the wood from the trees!) and I never need an excuse to avoid housework! 
Still love BYTES though sometimes don't get time to really peruse it and enjoy. 
Kind Regards 
Kara
Thanks, Kara.

Some comments about Kara’s email:
  • Here is an enlargement of that part of the photograph referred to by Kara:
  • TThe first link in Kara's email is to an entry in The Dictionary of Sydney about a cockatoo, Cocky Bennett, who lived to 119 years when the usual is 80 years. Kara is correct in that Cocky Bennett has previously featured in Bytes, here is that story and link:
Cocky Bennett the sulphur-crested cockatoo died in Sydney in 1916 aged 120 — possibly making him Australia's longest lived parrot (although his precise age varies from source to source). The legendary raucous bird spent the first 78 years of his life sailing the South Sea Islands with his owner Captain George Ellis (who acquired the bird when he was a boy). After Ellis died in the late 1880s aged 87, Cocky wound up at the Sea Breeze Hotel at Tom Ugly's Point, where he became a star attraction — despite having lost all his feathers by the turn of the century. (His freakish beak was caused by psittacine beak and feather disease.) Cheeky locals were known to ply the "Cock of the Bar" with "strong brew", making him launch into his noisy catchphrases. They included "One at a time, gentlemen, please" and "If I had another bloody feather I'd fly!"


http://bytesdaily.blogspot.com.au/2017/07/more-oz-fun-facts-and-pics.html
  • The following additional paragraphs are from The Dictionary of Sydney entry:
Captain Ellis died in the Solomon Islands aged 87 having travelled around the world with Cocky many times. Following his death, Ellis's nephew took temporary charge of Cocky although he had been bequeathed to Joseph and Sarah Bowden, who were then probably the licensees of Bowden's Clubhouse near the corner of Hunter and Castlereagh streets, Sydney.

By the time the Bowdens took delivery of their bequest they had moved to Melbourne. With Joseph's death in 1889, his wife Sarah married Charles Bennett and the couple moved to Tom Ugly's Point in Blakehurst where Charles became the licensee of the Sea Breeze Hotel.

Before motor traffic and modern bridges changed the scene, the Sea Breeze Hotel enjoyed great popularity as it was a convenient place to wait for the steam punt across the Georges River at Tom Ugly's Point and it had an excellent reputation for its cuisine, especially the seafood. When Charles died in September 1898, Sarah continued as licensee until she retired in 1915.
As I said, thanks K.


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