Tag Archives: Sons of Australia

An Anthemic Ancestor

Television and photo-plays have theme tunes. Nation-states have theme tunes which they call National Anthems. For most of Australia’s past two centuries, the national theme tune has been “God Save the [Queen/King]” (which does say quite a lot about the mentality of those who made that choice). Outside show-business identities and fictional characters, real people tend not have their own personal theme tune which plays whenever they make an entrance in to a room. (The President of the United States’s personal theme music pretty much…

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The Sons of Australia: Foundation and Foulkes

Sometimes its just a name that piques your interest. Sometimes names are all you have. The Sons of Australia Benefit Society was formed in January 1837 and it’s final meeting was held in August 1897. For sixty years it seemed to be an ever-present feature in the social fabric of Perth, Western Australia— and then it was gone. Most of what there is to know about the society comes from the contemporary press. That there was no mention of it in the Perth Gazette, the…

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Secret Squirrel Business

It seems like there was nothing the average man in Australia during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries enjoyed more than belonging to a secret society. Of course it’s no fun at all if no-one can know that you belong to that exclusive brotherhood*, so you have to make sure that everyone has got the memo by flaunting your membership of that organisation (you are not able to discuss publicly) in the most ostentatious manner you can manage. Street parades in uniform were best; inviting the…

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