‘Why Don’t You Volunteer?’ – News from the Moruya Examiner of 1915

Blog_Jan14HeaderShire-wide news extracts from the Moruya Examiner of this time in 1915, provided by the Moruya & District Historical Society:

STOCK RETURNS – Mr. Stock Inspector Mater has been in town during the week examining the stock returns, with the result that he finds no less than 112 owners have failed to make returns. Mr. Mater has kindly supplied us with the following figures showing the number of stock returned and the estimated number not returned, viz.: Returned – horses 2476, cattle 20845, sheep 2616; estimated not returned – horses 448, cattle 4196, sheep 1063; total – horses 2925, cattle 25041, sheep 3679. These figures show an increase in horses of 90, a decrease in cattle of 408 and a decrease in sheep of 29. We are informed that legal proceedings will at once be taken against defaulters. We would therefore strongly urge upon those who have left themselves liable, probably through an oversight, to rush in their returns, and their neglect may, possibly, be overlooked by the authorities. 23/1/1915

Farms along the Araluen Road
Farms along the Araluen Road

EVERYTHING is going up by leaps and bounds for the farmer and grazier, produce of all kinds is bringing phenomenal prices and the high price of butcher’s meat is causing considerable concern to Sydney people. 23/1/1915

NERRIGUNDAH (From our Correspondent) – On Friday, the 13th inst., a grand farewell social was held in the School of Arts, as a send-off to three of our local men – G. Thomas, A. Waters, and A. Coleman, who have volunteered their services for the honor of our flag at the front. The hall was tastefully decorated with flags and rifles, the Union Jack and flags of the Allies being placed in prominent positions. Patriotic speeches were given by Messrs. J. Jessop (chairman), D. Fraser, W.E. Guest and J. Pollock… 23/1/1915

The Nerrigundah Roll of Honour. The names of two residents mentioned in the article above would be on this board - now found in the Bodalla Hall
The Nerrigundah Roll of Honour – now found in the Bodalla Hall. A. Waters’ ( mentioned above) name is on this board.

(By “Merriang,” in the “Stock and Station Journal.”)

There are thousands in Australia who say that they’ll defend
If the Germans come towards us just at the bitter end;
But if the Kaiser William suppressed the British, so
His ships were free to reach us, Australia then would know
Their talk of late defences would simply useless be,
And that careless laggard had missed a victory.

We’ve a million men, all stalwart, beneath the Southern Cross
Who should enlist for service, to ease the Empire’s loss
Of noble fighting Britons, now facing fearful stress,
The while our sons are idly boasting merits numberless,
We are sending forth our thousands, with smugly vainful boast
That we’re ‘helping out the Allies’ to Europe’s winning post.

Such efforts, though, are feeble, despite our ringing cheers
For the little band Australia sends forth as volunteers.
Oh! All you sons of Britain, transplanted in this land,
How can you feel contented? Oh! Don’t you understand
They menace British freedom and British old fairplay –
These creatures of the Kaiser, who are drinking to “The Day?”

You’ve a birthright, true Australians, you have something to uphold
To prove the blood within you in peace has not grown cold,
Never mind your “hopes in business,” never heed the seeming cost;
If die you must, die bravely, before the cause is lost.
You boast you’ve God’s own country, you’ve boasted and you’ve cheered,
Be dumb, and hide your face now, unless you’ve volunteered.

You claim a White Australia; you’re always talking fight –
You swear no colored races will mingle with the white,
And yet you cheer the Hindoo, who fights with the Allies,
And screams his cheers for Britain and with the British dies.
While you, who bar his color, are standing idly by
To let him do the fighting. Why don’t you go and try

To prove that you’re Australian, so you, when ends the war,
May hold your head up proudly, as your fathers did before?
Oh, what’s the use of talking, while your haggard brothers go to fight
Against the German millions, whose only thought is might?
Don’t dare to raise your heads, boys, don’t say that you’ve no fear
Why don’t you prove you’re British? WHY DON’T YOU VOLUNTEER?

A World War 1 recruitment poster on display at the Australian War Memorial
A World War 1 recruitment poster on display at the Australian War Memorial

Seventeen 100 years ago booklets containing articles for the years 1899 to 1914 are available ($5 ea) from the Society’s rooms. Copies of local newspapers from the 1860s to date can be viewed at the Society’s Family History Research Centre (Ph 4474 3224) situated at the rear of the Pioneer Museum in Campbell St. Moruya (mdhs.org.au).

A new book entitled Kiora Kith and Kin, by Shirley Jurmann, is also now available from the Society for $20.

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