Tenindewa’s local correspondent (click on)

Francis Henry Critch was a loyal employee of the Geraldton “Express” for over 40 years.
He held the positions of Foreman, Printer and Manager in that time. He had come to the “Express” from the Fremantle Express.
One of his sons, Leo, was one of the first settlers in the Tenindewa area, 78 kilometers east of Geraldton, in the early 1900s and during the span of about 30 years he moonlighted for the Express under the pseudonym of (Our Own Correspondent)

The following are from a plethora of articles he contributed during that time

Note; All Tenindewa Rainfall data for the years 1908 to the current time is available on one of the following BOM site location numbers …Tenindewa Store (08120) Tenindewa North (08128) Tenindewa South West (08237)
Go to BOM…Go to Past weather…Go to Data and Graphs…Enter one of the location numbers eg 08120

June 16th 1911

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

June 11th 1911
June 23rd 1911 (reprinted by the Geraldton Express!!! )

Tenindewa Talk (To the Editor)
A Remonstrance

Sir, During the last few weeks several editions of scurrilous and vindictive diatribe, have appeared in the columns of the “Express” under the heading of the “Tenindewa Talk”. Sometimes by “Our Own Correspondent” and at other times under a nom-de-plume; which ostensibly represent one and the same person. I would suggest that in future your correspondent subscribe himself as “the Skunk” as it seems impossible for him to detail the items of interest without pouring out a volume of his slimly spleen over one or other of his neighbors, one who has great progress at his calling, than he himself has. He evidently imagines that the high road to success and fame lies in back-biting his neighbors and endeavoring to injure them in the eyes of the public through them, ie the medium of your columns. No doubt it is gratifying to the author to see his drivel come out in print, and at the same time it does no harm, as anyone who knows the parties concerned can readily detect the germ of envy lurking between every line of his invective harangue. In your issue of June the 16th he refers to some information that was published in the “Western Mail” by Mr. Catton Grasbey, of what a settler did here at Tenindewa with a 100 pounds ($200.00) Agricultural advance, and he describes the information as being “absolutely incorrect in detail and rottenly misleading in general”. Well Mr. Editor, I supplied that information to Mr. Grasbey and, I am the settler referred to, and further I vouch for the accuracy of that information. I challenge your correspondent to reveal his identity or to show any details of that statement that was incorrect or misleading. If he will, for an instant, remove those blinkers of jealousy and hate from his stilled senses, he will readily see that after all, I did nothing wonderful, but merely exercised a little foresight, energy and intellect–three faculties your correspondent has never been endowed—Yours etc.
Norman Fry “Kaburnie” June 29th 1911

Norman & Marjorie Fry

July 3rd 1911

Tenindewa Notes (Our own own Correspondent)

Seeding operations are just completed, and a fall of rain would be very welcome as the season has been unusually dry up to the present. In fact we have only had two inches of rain (50 mm) in the last 9 months, and some settlers are compelled to cart water. The early sown crops are looking nice, although the season, slow in starting, favors a late sown crop. It is the experience of the writer, extending over 13* years, that the season slow in starting usually continues favorably, rains falling when most needed, namely in the months of September and October, although no sowing should be attempted after the 24th of May (the date mentioned by Mr. Norman Fry at the last Producers Conference) and particularly after heavy rain. Some three years ago this gentleman cropped 80 acres (32 hectares). The 20 sown in the dry state cut one ton per acre (2.5 tonne per hectare) the balance sown after heavy rain, cut only 6 hundredweight per acre…..a difference of 14 hundredweight.
[20 cwt (Hundredweight) to the ton]

[*Possibly meaning that, that (13 years) is the extent of local rainfall records. Mullewa’s records started about then (1898) and Leo Critch would only have been 21 when this was written. Indeed Tenindewa’s entire wheat growing history would have extended back only about 3 years at best in 1911.
Indeed, taking that “Our Own Correspondent” is one and the same person right the way through these articles it is interesting to note that he eventually gives us a glimpse of who he is in the article of November 1st 1928 where he states “I am a pioneer farmer on [sic] this area, and have learned a little during the past 20 years, and I have much more to learn”]


Its a great pity what great disappointment and misery may be indirectly caused by giving misleading and highly colored statements to persons who, they well know, will have them printed, about what can be done with little capital on the land. Of course it is a cheap advertisement for the person supplying the information. The pressman knows no better, and being anxious for news of that kind, is imposed upon. I read an account quoted by Mr. Catton Grasby in the “Western Mail” of what a settler did here at Tenindewa with 100 pounds ($200.00). Mr. Grasby either had his leg pulled or he was imposed upon, because the par was was absolutely incorrect in details and rottenly misleading in general. I consider as an experienced battling settler that such persons should be dealt with by the law. Common manly principals do not always prevail. Success is often due to unusually good luck, and the efforts of genuine settlers are frequently belittled by comparisons. (See June 11th)

Since last writing, we have had 50 points of rain (12.5 mm) which of course was very welcome as many crops were feeling the effects of the dry weather, while others never looked better at this time of the year, notably those of Messes Dunkin, Valentine and Critch Brothers., whose crop is about 18 inches (46 cms) high. Messes Tullock and Oldham, some new settlers have a nice field of 150 acres (60 hectares) under wheat. These settlers had the good fortune to strike fresh water on their holding at 17 feet (5 meters). It was located by the mysterious divining rod. It would be a great boon to settlers if more proved water existed, as this difficulty has been a great drawback to the district.
The local Progress Association is doing good work. Through their efforts Tenindewa is to have a telephone, a special grant for roads has been obtained, and a townsite is to be surveyed as soon as soon as a site is decided upon. This body has been asked to choose from three suggested by the Lands Department. One is a quagmire the other is a sand-drift and the third is proposal to resume a splendid piece of land for this purpose. The owner, I believe in a public spirit is not opposed to the resumption, and the taking of the fencing, and a bit of clearing, and a small iron house, at the owners valuation. The Government would not be asked for more than 30 pounds ($60.00), an amount two town blocks would realize, because Tenindewa will be a distributing centre of some importance with 120.000 acres (30,000 hectares) of good agricultural land, and being the junction of 5 main roads.
It is sincerely to be hoped that Mr. H J Stafford, a local settler, will decide to stand as a candidate in the interests of the people’s party at the coming elections. The average farmer is a worker, and should vote with the Labour Party every time. And should the Labour Party be asked to form Ministry after the elections, Mr. Stafford’s 38 years railway experience would go a long way in making him a first class Minister for Railways. Reforms are badly needed in this department. For instance, hundreds of “cord’ of firewood lay around this center, while at least one hundred empties [rail trucks] pass weekly to Geraldton, which is a town threatened with a firewood famine. Its not the freight that prevents settlers from selling wood at a profit, but silly, unreasonable loading regulations to the disadvantage of all concerned.
In my last notes I referred to a “par” in the Western Mail merely to illustrate a point of public concern, because I honestly think the bright side of the settlers lot is too often held up as an example, while the ordinary state of affairs is hardly mentioned. I stated facts which still remain [facts] and I defy Mr. Fry to substantiate his insinuations that they were made use of for any other than a good purpose. There was no occasion for him to trot out a lot of meaningless second hand rubbish in his efforts to live up to his reputation at my expense. Even if the par I referred to was true it was still misleading. This season he got his clearing done at 12 shilling and sixpence per acre ($3.00 per hectare) Now anybody in a position to judge knows clearing to be worth 30 shillings per acre ($7.50 per hectare) in Tenindewa. The Agricultural Bank allows one pound per acre as a rule ($5.00 per hectare), but one settler was only allowed 13 shillings and 4 pence per acre ($3.50 per hectare). It is impossible to get work done at trustees valuation without sweating labour, and that accounts for so many contactors failing. I know there are instances of farmers doing remarkably well with little capital, but they had good plant and of course can get unlimited credit. It was possible a year or two ago, on account of a glut in the labour market to sweat the workers and show a fair profit on an Agricultural Bank loan, but it is not a desirable basis of success. Mr. Fry does not miss the opportunity to boast that he has been richly endowed by nature. Intellect is a gift, and he should not dispose others who have been less fortunate in this direction, but [they] perhaps have some good points he himself does not possess. He should also remember that the year he did so well [was] the year rainfall was 9 inches above average (250mm) and average is about twelve and a half inches (350 mm). Now had it been 9 inches below [average] it would have taken a lot of energy, intellect and foresight to balance the difference. While the former two are gifts, more or less, the last, I think is acquired and it is this is the very one that Mr. Fry fails in because only last year he shipped wheat to Europe and it netted 2 shillings and 10 pence per bushel ($3.60 per tonne) while local buyers were offering 1 shilling per bushel. So he cannot claim credit for special ability in this direction.

16th July 1911

Tenindewa Talk (From our own Correspondent)

The usual monthly meeting of the Tenindewa Progress Association was held on Sunday week at Wollya Wells;
Present: Messes H. J. Stafford (in the chair) Oldham, Critch, Dunkin, Valentine, Stafford (2) and the secretary.

Mr. Oldham proposed and Mr. Critch seconded, that Mr. Norman Fry become a member. Carried
Minutes of previous meeting read and confirmed.
Outward correspondence read, which included a letter from The Member advising [a] successful result of application for road grant.
From Postal Department re. Telephone and from District Surveyor re. townsite.
The meeting was informed, in an off-handed manner, that the Geraldton Road Board wished information, concerning the 100 pound ($200.00) special grant.
Mr. Stokes proposed and Mr. Fry seconded that the Geraldton Road Board be asked to supervise the outlay immediately.
Mr. Stokes moved that the money be expended upon certain works for which it was not asked. No seconder.
Mr. Fry moved as an amendment that the 100 pounds ($200.00) be spent on the salt bush flat between his house and the Government Well. Seconded Mr. Valentine and carried.
The Secretary, at this stage explained for Mr. Fry’s information, as he had not been a member of the Association before that day, that the money was asked for a particular purpose and granted, and should be spent accordingly. The money was applied for to open a road leading to twenty thousand acres (8,094 hectares) of surveyed land, and as it passed a fenced property the Act compelled the fencing of the road, and if the money was spent on any other work without the sanction of Minister for Works there would be trouble and it would not be in the “Transvaal”. However, the amendment succeeded and the meeting formed into an Inspection Committee to inspect the water track and report. Messes Critch, Stokes and J Stafford withdrew as a protest.
A townsite was next dealt with. A Sand-drift of Crown lands two miles from the siding was considered out of the question
Mr. Stokes moved that the Government be asked to resume North-East corner of Lot two for a site. No Seconder
He then moved an amendment that the townsite be surveyed on Reserve 145 as close as possible to the siding. Seconded by Mr. C Stafford and carried.
The Secretary was instructed to write to the member re. the level crossing for Messes Oldham and Tullock; to Postal Department re. the early erection of telephone apparatus; and to the Lands and Railway Departments re. letters unanswered.
The meeting was then declared closed.
A muster of the Tenindewa Dreadnoughts Football team was held on Sunday last, when a scratch match with nine men a side was played. Captain Gee’s team beat captain Buck’s team by eleven goals to five. Among the spectators was fair sprinkling of young ladies which no doubt accounts for the absence of bad language.
I fail to see why a friendly game of football on a Sunday in a centre where there is no place of worship should be looked upon as a sin. I think if no greater sin was committed there would be a fair assemblage in the happy hunting grounds later on.
Something like an inch of rain fell here this week and, there is every appearance of more approaching. The farmers smile for the time-being will stand the acid test, as a good season will give them what they are entitled too.
Almost everyone was touched by the sad news that Mr. Harold Woodley was accidently killed in a boxing tournament last week. Harold was well known and he was also well liked by everyone who came in contact with him during the two years he worked here. People who patronize prize fights and tournaments are to blame as much as the promoters as it is a class of sport that should be condemned. There does not seem much sportsmanship in going to see two trained men knocking one another about, when there is no reason why they shouldn’t be the best of friends, Its against common sense and, if its not against the law, it is not so bad in the case of two settlers, for instance, who have a real grievance and have heart enough to meet each other and settle things by rough and tumble, and after the bout (and as a rule they never hurt each other) they get along on the best of terms. A fight of this kind has a logical commencement and often a logical result.
Mr. Sid Hosken seems to be a new brand of politician, and should be given a trial. It is time a sample of his class was on the market. In my opinion it is desirable that there should be a third party. As things are now its quite evident some of the members, or or even all of them are mere voting machines and support or oppose a measure according to the dictates of their leaders.
Farmers will very soon be asked to pay their laborer’s a higher rate of wages, and be compelled to work regulated hours. Farmers should welcome these changes, because a better stamp of men will follow the farm work, and it will not be so difficult to obtain suitable men as has been the case hitherto.
1911 rainfall Tenindewa (Fry’s House) Kaburnie
Jan..7.6 Feb..0.0 Mar..0.0 April..23 May..16.8 June..38.1 July..45.3 Aug..16.3 Sept..6.9 Oct..5 Nov..0.0 Dec..0.0
Total 138.3mm or 533 points [133mm]


July 17th 1911

******Tenindewa Talk (From our own Correspondent)******
******Note the variation*******and note the article that follows this one?

The usual monthly meeting of the Tenindewa Progress Association was held on Sunday week at Wollya Wells :
Present: Messrs. H. J. Stafford (in the chair), Oldham, Critch, Dunkin, Valentine, Stafford (2) and the secretary.
Mr. Oldham proposed, and Mr. Critch seconded, that Mr. Norman Fry become a member. Carried
Minutes of previous meeting read and confirmed.
Outward correspondence read, which included a letter from the Member advising successful result of application of road grant.
From Postal Department re. Telephone
From District Surveyor re. Townsite.
The meeting was informed in an off-hand manner, that the Geraldton Roads Board wished information concerning the 100 pound special grant.
Mr. Stokes moved and Mr. Fry seconded that the Geraldton Roads Board be asked to supervise the outlay immediately. Carried.
Mr. Stokes moved that the money be expended upon certain works for which it was asked. No seconder.
Mr. Fry moved an amendment that the 100 pound be spent on the saltbush flat between his house and the Government Well. Seconded by Mr. Valentine and carried.
The Secretary, at this stage explained for Mr. Fry’s information, as he had not been a member of the association before that day, that the money was asked for a particular purpose and granted and should be spent accordingly. The money was applied for to open a road leading to twenty thousand acres of surveyed land, and as it passed through fenced property the Act compelled the fencing of the road, and if the money was spent on any other work without the sanction of the Minister for Works there would be trouble and it wouldn’t be in the Transvaal.
However, the amendment succeeded, and the meeting formed an Inspection Committee to inspect the water track and report. Messrs. Critch, Stokes and T Stafford withdrew as a protest.
The Townsite was next dealt with. A sand-drift of Crown lands, two miles from the siding was considered out of the question. [for a townsite]
Mr. Stokes moved that the Government be asked to resume North-East corner of lot 2 for a townsite. No seconder. He then moved an amendment that the Townsite be surveyed on Reserve 113 as close to the siding as possible. Seconded Mr. Stafford and carried.
The Secretary was instructed to write to the member re. the level crossing for Messrs. Oldham and Tullock: to Postal Department re. early erection of telephone apparatus: and to the Lands and Railway Departments re. letters unanswered.
The meeting was then declared closed .
A muster of the Tenindewa Dreadnought Football team was held on Sunday last, when a scratch match with nine men a side was played. Mr. Gee’s team beat Captain Buck’s team by eleven goals to five.
Among the spectators was a fair sprinkling of young ladies, which no doubt accounts for the absence of bad language.
I fail to see why a friendly game of football on Sunday, in a centre where there is no place of worship should be looked upon a sin. I think if no greater sin was committed there would be a fair assemblage in the happy hunting grounds later on.
Something like an inch of rain [25 mm] fell here this week, and there is every appearance of more approaching. The farmers smile for the time being will stand for the acid test, as [a] good season will give them what they are entitled too. [sic]
Almost everyone was touched by the sad news that Mr. Harold Woody was accidently killed in the boxing tournament last week. Harold was well known and he was well liked by everyone who came in contact with him during the two years he worked here. People who patronize prize fights and tournaments are to blame as much as the promoters, and it is a class of sport which should be condemned. There does not seem much sportsmanship in going to see two trained men knocking on another about, when there is no reason why they shouldn’t be the best of friends. its against common sense and, if its not against the law, it is not so bad in the case of two settlers, for instance, who have a real grievance and have heart enough to meet each other and settle things by a good rough and tumble, and after the bout (and as a rule they never hurt each other) they get along on the best of terms. A fight of this kind has a logical commencement and very often a logical result.
Mr. Cid Hoskin seems to be a brand of politician and should be given a trial, It is time a sample of his class was on the market. In my opinion it is desirable that there should be a third party. as things are now its quite evident some of the members, or even all of them are mere voting machines and support or oppose something according to the dictates of their leaders.
Farmers will be asked to pay their laborers a higher rate of wages, and be compelled to work regulated hours. Farmers should welcome these changes, because a stamp of men will follow farm work, and it will not be so difficult to obtain suitable men as been the case hitherto.


August 16th 1911

Tenindewa Talk (From our own Correspondent)

The following is a copy of the minutes of the Tenindewa Progress Association monthly meeting, supplied and signed by the secretary of that body, held on Sunday evening , the 5th instant.
Present–Mr H.J.Stafford (chairman), Messrs. Critch, Meadowcroft, Dunkin, Valentine, Stafford, Fry, Oldham, Tulloch. Hackett, Eves and the secretary.
The minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed. Inward and outward correspondence was read.
After discussion it was decided to erect a 8ft X 10ft (2.5 meters by 3 meters) iron room for a telephone office, and 9 pounds ($18.00) was collected at the meeting to cover the costs.
Moved by Mr. Dunkin and seconded by Mr. Oldham that the Postal Department be informed.
Carried
Moved Mr. Fry and seconded Mr. Oldham that the Railway Department be written to asking them to run a return passenger train from Mullewa to Geraldton on Saturdays.
Carried.
The Secretary was instructed to the Mullewa Progress Association asking for their cooperation on the matter.
Moved by Mr. Stokes and seconded by Mr. J Stafford that the lands Department be asked to set aside 40 acres (17 hectares) on reserve 945 as a recreation reserve. Carried.
Moved by Mr. Fry that the following resolution be forwarded to the Minister for Works:– That this Association views with no small amount of anxiety and concern the delay that is taking place with regard to the formation of the Mullewa Road Board and respectfully suggests that you [the Minister] will use your personal efforts towards having the Board put in working order without further delay.
Carried
Moved Mr. Valentine and seconded by Mr. Oldham that a copy of the minutes be forwarded to the local paper for publication. [see article preceding] Carried.
There is a movement at foot to start a rifle club, as there are a large number of “shooters” here, who are at present members of the Eradu Club, and consequently have to go over 20 miles (32 kilometers) to practice.
The “Tenindewa Dreadnoughts,” the local footballers are training somewhat, in anticipation of the forthcoming match with the Geraldton Shop Assistance on the 23rd instant.
Quite a stir was caused amongst Jimmy Grants” * working hereabouts by a letter appearing in your columns on Friday last, signed “Ex-Victorian” casting a reflection on immigrants, English in particular. Some of the immigrants I have spoken to expressed themselves in language quite unfit for publication, and if Mr. “Ex-Victorian” ever makes his appearance in this locality I would advise him to conceal his identity. (* note the rhyming slang)
Wild Turkeys are very plentiful and are unusually quiet. Being protected during the mating season. In fact it is quite a common sight to see wild turkeys and settler’s [turkeys] feeding together.
A kangaroo drive, as suggested by a settler, has not yet materialized bit I think if the mover was again to bring the proposal to the surface , something would eventuate, seeing such a great interest is taken in rifle shooting here, and what would be a better pastime [be displayed] in the shape of guerilla warfare, than say a party of the Tenindewa Royal Standback Rifles, with H.J. Stafford in command, surrounding and ambushing a mob of grey kangaroos out on our back sandplain some fine Sunday afternoon.

August 19th 1911

Tenindewa notes (From our own Correspondent)

Rain, rain every day, water lying everywhere, and the crops looking splendid. It is a real feast for the eyes to see the nice green fields of wheat. Some crops are just coming into ear and the hay crop is assured. A real good wheat and hay crop would be the best thing to ease the money market. With a bumper harvest there would be plenty of work in the agricultural areas for the immigrants. Work has been almost at a standstill during the last year or so.
The Railway Department are hard at work here making way for the coming wheat harvest. They are lengthening the siding, also the ramp and generally making things better. One of the important matters they are overlooking, and that is the provision for loading and unloading sheep. A number of settlers have sheep and no doubt before long they will all have them. The only convenience for loading sheep at present is an old broken down sheep race. A cheap yard could be easily made and a great boon. It is hoped the Railway Department will please note this and the writer contends that the Geraldton Chamber of Commerce should pay some attention to such matters at sidings and at places outside of Geraldton because it is the out-country that will make Geraldton.
A new State School is wanted here badly. The present one is rather rough and in a very flat position hence very wet. In a rising district like this the Education Department could not go far wrong by erecting a small school. I understand a site has been selected in the reserve in the townsite

September 13th 1911

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)

The “flu” has been raging around here for the last week, and its severity may be guessed where I state that it prevented the local Dreadnoughts from journeying to Mullewa last Sunday to take part in the local football scramble [carnival]
Mr. L I Nanson addressed a meeting of electors last Friday. The gathering was not as large as might have been, but the inconvenience of the hour no doubt accounted for such a small attendance. Mr. Nanson endeavored to show in the course of his speech that his opponent was not qualified because he was not a figure-head of one party or another but, that fact especially, qualifies Mr. Hoskin to represent a community of farmers. Should he be returned he will be elected on his merits and elected by the people, to serve the people, not the Liberal or Labour Parties whose political champions are more or less mere voting machines, and allow their opinions to be twisted and turned in any direction as long as the 1300 pounds ($2600.00) is in sight. It is about time farmers woke up and sent a farmer to represent them and their interests in Parliament, and I think Hoskin should get the thanks of every elector in the Greenough Electorate.
Unfortunately the season has not been up to expectations, and as its getting late, there is little hope of betterment. Crops however are looking well, and every farmer will get a fair return. Some of the crops are over the most dangerous stage, and no amount of hot weather will harm while others —-well six inches (150mm) of rain would do no harm. Farmers will have to fallow, and the Agriculture Department should encourage this method of agriculture by making an advance of say, 10 shillings per acre ($2.50 per hectare) to every farmer with less than 300 acres (120 hectares) of cleared land who fallow 150 [acres] or over.
The said advance could be repaid over eighteen months and every eighteen months with 5% added. The 60,000 pounds $120,000.00 the Government intends to spend on Parliament House would do for a portion of the capital required.
We have had only 5 inch’s (125 mm) of rain for the year. Settlers are carting water. The Government tank is just about dry, and the Minister for Lands has the opportunity of his life now to really do something for the ground down settlers who help to swell that rent roll of the department of which he is the head serang. Mr. Mitchell’s management has been more or less a success during the past period of good seasons and good prices. Now that we are up against a dry season he will be given a fair trial, and it is to be hoped that he will, not be found, wanting.
I have noticed several letters and remarks re. the proposed “Bachelor Tax.” The object of such a tax I gather, is to induce or compel men to marry, but if such a proposal became law, it would penalize the wrong party, I say tax the girls of marriageable age, of course exemptions for special cases. Young men “off the shelf” could act as tax collectors and the result can be guessed. Girls are mostly to blame, because they are in the minority and have a wiser choice. This accounts for the high estimation in which they hold themselves. Sensible young men don’t marry until they strike a margin in some girl worth marrying. Bargains being scarce, this accounts for so many young men remaining single. One writer, signing himself “Bachelor” mentioned how many jilted lovers drown their sorrows by drinking, but he must have mistaken the circumstances for in reality he must have been celebrating the good fortune of being refused, and therefore making jolly, on account of missing his doom by such a narrow shave.
The local Roads Board will soon be in working order. The election of the first members takes place on the 23rd. Settlers should try and return members in sympathy with the ward system, and in touch with the agricultural portion of the roads Board districts. Squatters [Station folk] should be strictly barred from having any say whatsoever, and to prevent this farmers ought not to vote for them if they have another choice.

March 12th 1912

Country Cricket

Tenindewa Vs Mullewa

The above clubs meet in a return match at Tenindewa on the 10th inst. Mullewa winning by 54 runs. Both teams were well represented. A most enjoyable day’s outing, and an interesting game resulted. The following scores were:-

Tenindewa

Oldham b Thompson 6
Chas. Meadowcroft b Thompson 4
Fry run out 0
Clarence Meadowcroft c Willock b Thompson 9
Tullock (capt) b Thompson 1
Plummer not out 10
Critch c Willock b Thompson 3
Stokes b Willock 0
O’Byrne b Willock 5
Smith b Willock 1
Davis c and b Willock 1
Sundries 8
Total 48

Bowling Wilcock 4 for 9, Thompson 5 for 16, Warren 0 for 10

Mullewa

Olsen b Cl Meadowcroft 5
A.L. Smith b Oldham 8
J Gilmore b Oldham 7
Wilcock b Oldham 3
Thompson (capt) c and b Tullock 23
D Warren c and b Cl Meadowcroft 0
J Giles b Oldham 20
Molster c Meadowcroft b Oldham 0
C Warren Not out 9
Watkins c Stokes b Meadowcroft 2
Bell b Meadowcroft 1
Sundries 25

Total 102

Bowling Oldham 5 for 27, Meadowcroft 4 for 34, Tullock 1 for 8

August 31st 1912

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Crops are not looking so well this past fortnight owing to a very dry month, practically no rain having fallen up to the time of writing. (August 17th). The forward crops are suffering a good deal. Some farmers are going to commence hay cutting this week, and there is some nice stuff to cut around Tenindewa and Mullewa. I think there will be more hay than wheat this season, and the price for chaff should be good owing to a scarcity of feed Murchison way. Talking of feed, some of the best feed paddocks seen for a long while are around Tenindewa, some of Messes Stafford and Sons. One paddock has feed over a foot high (32 cm) for hundreds of acres. It is a treat to look at.
The days are getting warm and water bags are being attended to, and sometimes something stronger by way of a change.
The Tenindewa Dreadnoughts gave the Mullewa Tigers a good doing at football on Sunday last. Several players from both sides put in some good play, and the umpire got through very well. Only his sight needed more range and his running trim was not too good, hence he was rather too far off at times to be sure of his game. Note (Very possible the author was the umpire?)
The Agricultural Hall at Mullewa is almost finished, and it is to be opened with great ceremony on the 11th of September, when included in the show is a cricket match between Tenindewa and Mullewa, which should prove to be interesting, especially the afternoon tea which the ladies are providing. The Tenindewa fellows are good on tea, nothing stronger Mr. Editor.
The Mullewa District Farmers Association is going strong and is likely to prove a good live body, and of much use to the district. They held their second meeting last Saturday and enrolled a number of fresh members. Their regular meeting day is the first Saturday after the full moon.
New settlers are coming around again. Evidently they are the right sort, and not easily frightened with the bad season. Mr. Brinkly [Brenkley] and his three sons, and Mr. Johnson, of Northampton, have settled on Kockatea Gully, below Mr. Stafford and son’s holding. The former [Brenkley] are Englishmen.
The Government water boring water parties (two in number) are still active around the district. One party is at the State Forrest and the other at Bindoo.
Land speculators should be dealt with promptly, as good land is shut up, which would be quickly taken and improved if in other hands. It would be as well if Mr. Bath would look to such matters as good settlers are looking for land.
Mr. Thomas Henry Bath Labour MLA Minister for Lands

Back: John William Brenkley, Sarah Alice Brenkley, Herbert Brenkley. Seated: John Brenkley, Walter Brenkley, Mary Brenkley. Photo possibly taken before Walter left for Australia.

September 10th 1912

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Since my last notes lovely rains have fallen, and farmers are shaking hands with themselves. It is wonderful how the rains improve the crops and the farmers spirits. Such a lot depends on the rains. Even in the farmers family, most promises made are “when the crop comes off,” and if it don’t happen to come off, what disappointment in the family circle, especially the young members. I think the wheat crop is now practically assured, and some good hay crops also will be cut.
Railway facilities are much behind the requirements here, and with a good harvest things will be worse than middling, as the siding is far too short to deal fairly with a good season. There is no accommodation for stock loading, although there are hundreds of sheep kept by farmers, and some have good crops of lambs too. Already several lots of sheep (fats) have been dispatched from here, and a few thousand landed. So why will not this indifferent department of the State get a move on. Everything has to be battled for and fairly drawn out of them. If they were up to date they would keep ahead of requirements. Our Member should note this and impress this matter on the Government. Another requirement is a Saturday morning train from Mullewa to Geraldton, and one back the same day. A carriage on the goods train would do, and would not be expensive. All the other districts from Geraldton have the convenience, but we are the most neglected end of the north.
What shall we do with our harvest? Where shall we market our wheat, chaff, and lambs are matters that are worrying the minds of farmers? Bags and railage will cost farmers about nine and a half pence (10 cents) per bag for wheat and for chaff bags alone per ton 16 shillings ($1.60) counting 30 to the ton, without freight to market for the chaff. Why can we not have daily or tri-weekly suctions of chaff etc., in the railway yards at Geraldton, with storage at minimum rates. Nine and a half pence (!0 cents) per bag dead loss dead loss to farmers for wheat should make the Government waken up to the need for bulk-handling. Now then Farmers Association move on. You have plenty to battle for. You cannot pass your extra expenses on like others, and you have the world to compete with in your main production product, wheat.
Further why don’t the Government introduce the “through bill of lading” now they have their steamers running on this coast. They subsidized the old Julia Percy. If they would do this it would be a good help and to the Murchison people.

A “through bill of lading” is a legal document that allows for the transportation of goods both within domestic boarders and through international shipment. The “through bill of lading” is often required for the exporting of goods, as it serves as a cargo receipt, a carriage contract, as well as the title sometimes for the products.//// With thanks to Google

September 19th 1912

Country Cricket

Mullewa Vs Tenindewa
The above teams met at Mullewa on Wednesday last, 11th inst. After a very friendly and enjoyable game Mullewa won easily. Two or three of the visitors best were unfortunately absent. At four o’clock the players adjourned for afternoon tea, kindly supplied by the ladies. The following are the scores;

Mullewa
J Cutler c Oldham b Gee 44
G Gilmore b Perejuan 17
W Willock b Oldham 3
A.E.Douglas c Stokes b Perejuan 2
D Warren run out 0
Thompson (capt) c Tullock b Oldham 22
J.F. Giles b Gee 16
Olsen b Stokes 23
May not out 7
C. Warren b Stokes 0
Bowtell c and b Stokes 7
Sundries 18

Total 159
Tenindewa
J. Gee b Thompson 18
Perejuan b Cutler 0
Tullock c Giles b Cutler 7
Oldham (capt) b Thompson 0
W,H Stokes c Bowtell b Thompson 0
L. Critch b Thompson 0
Coulton b Willock 0
N. Fry b Willock 4
Davis b Thompson 1
Rumble 2
Sundries 3

Total 44


October 5th 1912

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Crops are looking well, owing to the nice showers, and most settlers are now hay making. Some splendid crops are being cut by Messes. Valentine and Dunkin, and Stafford and Son. Many do not believe in late sowing of wheat and Professor Lowrie, a few days since spoke very strongly against it. Some late crops here (middle and later in June sown) are looking just first rate, and in many respects beat the earlier [sown], as the dry August did not hurt them to any extent, Bunyip and Crossbred 73 and Alpha appear to be the most desirable wheats for this district. They cure quickly and make good growth for hay or wheat. Peas do splendid here, and Messes Stafford and Son, and J. Bowes have nice crops this year, the former in real sandplain with good growth, flowering and podding well. I saw a patch of lucerne, a few days since, that was sown in July 1911. It stood the drought last year and is now a foot high. It has not been cared for, and stock have grazed on the same. It is sown in sandplain, and with a fair season I believe it could be grown successfully.
With regard the Geraldton Chamber of Commerce, are those people really the farmers friend, or are they too much interested in the cockie’s purse? It appears to me they are mostly shipping agents. Why do the not take up “the through bill of lading” for the Government boat so as to help the settlers? Perhaps it would lose some Geraldton agents good sums. The Government are always saying what they are doing. Why cannot they do this and materially help farmers and the Murchison people.
Thousands of tons of [the] best firewood are being burned around Tenindewa, and close to the siding at that, owing to the excessive rate charged by the railway Department, vis one penny per ton per mile. If the Railway Department was a private concern, do you think this would be allowed to go on when hundreds of empty trucks are passing towards Geraldton weekly. Would it not pay rail to carry it for half penny per ton per mile? They do not handle the stuff, and as most of the trains are light, it would be a very profitable undertaking, but the Railway Department are too slow to recognize a thing of this kind. Why does the Minister for Lands or Railways have a turn at the matter. Surely it has been brought under their notice, and it would help the early settler also.
Two water boring parties are still out trying for water, and have been successful near Bindoo, but the well near Mr. Troy’s block and the one near Stafford and Son, are reported to be worse than middling so far, not having opened up too well. There must be something wrong with the testing prior to sinking wells?

January 4th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Another year just started Mr. Editor, and I believe in the number 13. I predict a bumper season for 1913. I am not going on sun spots or those kind of things but just on a guess which is nearly as comforting.
Harvest is nearly over in the district, except in a few cases where delay has been caused by machinery breakages, and this being a very bad season for stripping, too moist and not enough drying wind. Averages are small for wheat yields. I think about 9 or 10 bushels (.6 to .7 of a tonne per hectare) will be the average. All over great preparations are being made for a big cropping this year, and fallow and large areas are the order of the day. Who will be the first farmer to have 1000 acres in for one season. I think a prize should be offered by the Agricultural Association. Quantity of wheat is what most farmers are after. Quality of putting it in is all right, but does it pay to spend time on it? I think not in this area. A dry farmer here who wrote and spoke on this subject not long since, put the whole of his past seasons crop in with a spring tooth cultivator, and as far as I can see, he fared as well as any. Our district is a light soil even in the York Gum country.
Complaints still come from farmers of short weights and shortage in bags from buyers. Why don’t the farmers insist on the buyers taking delivery at the sidings. They have the matter in their own hands. I recollect a case of thirty-three bags of wheat being sent to Geraldton and the farmer lost six and a half bushels in weight, and when he complained they said, “oh that was the railways weights”. I’ll bet if it was six and a half bushels over what it should have been, they [the merchant] would not have taken the weights.
When is the government going to help farmers by exporting their wheat, making manure, and importing bags. At present it is the opinion of some farmers, that it is no good growing wheat or hay under the present conditions, as they have to content against dear manure, with uncertain delivery, dear bags, and slow delivery, and a small price for wheat, and loses in numbers of bags and weight.
The State school is almost an accomplished fact now here, and operations will commence this month. I understand Miss. Eva Stafford’ late of teacher at Geraldton High School, has been offered the position of teacher. She was a prominent pupil of Mr. Grogan’s who was head master of the State School Geraldton, and she then went through a course at the Methodist Ladies College, Claremont. The school is badly wanted and a good deal of thanks for obtaining same are due to Mr. N Fry.

January 14th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Christmas passed off quietly, with a good many grafting taking off crops.
The 300 yard Government Dam near Mr. Valentine and Dunkin’s place is nearly completed, the contractor being H.J. Saunders, and he is making a real good job of it.
I wonder who is responsible for the Wollya Reserve. Horses and other stock are running regularly on it, and a man and his family and a team of horses, have been camped there for months. The Mullewa Roads Board should wake up to this.
Old Wollya well wants putting in order as the dry season is here and farmers will want stock water.
Stacks of wheat are allowed to lie too long in the siding here before the Railway Department shift them. This poor tiered Department keeps up a long Christmas, and no lengthened siding has yet been provided, although it has been promised.

January 18th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)

Tenindewa has about finished harvest for this season. The results are a little below satisfactory, but the crops will still help the settlers to liquidate some of last years liabilities. Two bad seasons in succession should be rewarded by a bumper in 1913. Conditions in the weather line appear to be changing. I have not seen the barometer so low for a long while as it has been for the past few months. It has been lower than anytime in the last two years.
There has been very little hot weather here so far this summer, but still the water carts are plying freely to Wolya Dam.
Speaking of the dam reminds me of that tired body called the Mullewa Roads Board. They have time to have a notice placed at the dam instructing the ratepayers that they must not use the dam water for sheep or cattle, and appointing the two largest users of water from this dam to be in charge of same. Why should a settler not water his goat and kid as well as a cow and a calf and a few sheep? Now is a settler to pay his rates to find water for horses alone? He may only care about breeding sheep. Now the catchment of this dam is not fenced, and the people are allowed camp on the dam for months at a time with their horses, etc., and the catchment is filthy, and contaminating liguid runs into the dam. The Old Wolya Well is out of repair, when a few pounds would fix it up well, but the Roads Board is asleep. Tenindewa pays the bulk of the taxes, still only a few favored ones here can get anything spent on the roads, etc. The outback settler out Bindoo way, cannot get to the siding without trespassing through private property, although the Roads Board has been approached repeatedly about it. but they prefer to spend money on the Mullewa roads which are already hard and do not require any spending on them, and when the heavy rains set in the work they have done will be washed away.
What are the police doing at Mullewa? I was informed there were dozens of drunks lying around Mullewa at Christmas Holidays, and any Saturday night now public things are lively. I understand Mullewa has two “johns” now and the taxpayer has to support them, although if the public house was not there they would not require one.
You should have seen our worthy Hon. Speaker [of the House] handling wheat a few days since. He is quite an artist at it. He is spending a few days holidays round this part where he has a farm.
I went to a farm the other day and saw a cow evidently being milked by novices. The good lady of the house was in the stall; one girl the tail and one girl the leg rope. I did laugh. It is a fine thing for settler to have large families. The poor cow had no chance, and had to give her milk to them.

February 6th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Well, Mr. Editor, there are only two farmers who have not finished harvesting in this part, and they expect to finish before next Christmas.
Most of the cockies are new at the game and hence they are in the experimental stage. Of course, they receive plenty of advice from papers and others but, experience unless bought, is no use. It is too cheap, and not one in twenty will take it. We have bought a lot in the last two years here. It has been very dry, and neither will pay a dividend. Talk of selling out is common, but this cocky is going to stay till he is sold out, because what is the use of leaving a dry area when a man has bought two years hard experience? My advice to all is sit tight and graft, put in a lot of crop. It does not matter at whose expense as long as you get it in. Things are pretty bad around this and the Mullewa district again this season. Crops are very light, and it is a certainty they never paid to put them in except in isolated cases. The fault was not shortage of rain, but it came at the wrong time, and crops that at one time looked good enough for any yield up to 25 bushels, faded to about 6 bushels. In one case of 300 acres, only 60 ton of hay and less than 300 bags of wheat were taken. With wheat about 3 shillings a bushel, and bags at 8 shilling a dozen, how can this crop pay for taking it off and putting it in. Cocky had to buy his seed and manure owing to the failure of the previous year. Let some of the machinery men who are grumbling at the farmers for not being able two years machinery bills at once, work out what this cocky has for his keep, men etc.
This is enough about the backbone of the country.
With regard to the Progress association at Tenindewa, RIP can be written.
The Government boring party are still at it spending money in boring for water, instead of putting down dams at suitable places or trying an artesian bore. A number of bores have been put down within a 20-mile radius of the railway siding and with practically no success. As the bores are a failure, why not dam the water. Mr Editor the poor cockies often do when carting water, anything up to six miles and the sun 100 degrees in the shade.

Wollya will soon be dry, and it will prove to the Government Water Department that small dams like this (1100 yards) are of no use. It has a good catchment, why not increase its size and it holds like a water bag.
I think Roads Boards are a failure and they should be wiped out and replaced by a road superintendent and repairers in the districts. The matter would be attended to as needed. Do you think a superintendent would leave settlers with no way out from their holdings, when by spending about 2 shillings per chain they could get a track cut for the poor beggars. A few pounds would do the job, still they take absolutely no notice of the letters from these settlers. Messes. Brenkley, Carboy, Johnson and others who are on Kocketea Gully have to come through private property. Settlers have written the hon. minister for Works. That may have some effect, but why should it be necessary? They find money for less urgent works. What is the supervisor doing? Why not have all the roads inspected and reported on in a business-like way and do the most urgent works? What about the ward system for this Road Board. It is close to the elections again, but this matter seems to have died. Perhaps some of them are afraid of their seats?

April 5th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Tenindewa is quiet again now, the harvest being finished, and in most cases the money spent.
The Workers Compensation Act is not good for farmers, and farmers are not very anxious to employ labour in consequence. He is far too heavily taxed already through the Customs, Land Tax, Income Tax, Wheel Tax, Fire Arm Tax and Road Tax. From the latter he receives practically nothing. Only one or two farmers round here can get roads made. Other can beg and pray, but without effect.
The Mullewa Roads Board badly wants a change in its composition. It requires some business men on it. They are spending money round Mullewa on roads that were better in their natural state. The country roads are neglected, and the usual cry is “no funds”. Then the expenditure on Roads Board elections could do with investigation, and it would be interesting to know how much elections have cost during the last twelve months. The Roads Board Act needs revising in more ways than one.
The District Farmers Association is not booming and the platform they have adopted is practically the Liberal platform. One plank in their platform insists upon freehold in land. Why could not they have made this optional, so that a man could take it on lease or freehold just as he desired. That would be Liberal then I think. A good many will withdraw out of the Association now, whilst in my opinion they are too stiff in their expenses at the Executive Office.
Very heavy winds have been the rule lately, mainly off the land. A few light showers fell on March 31st, about enough to wet a light silk coat.
Some farmers will commence to seed next week. It may do for some [wheat] varieties, and too early with wheats like Bunyip, Alpha and Fairbank [and that] is as bad as too late. Some farmers are only going to sow small areas this season, and fallow for the next. Others have a fair bit of fallow for this season, and it will be interesting to watch how fallow lands yield here.
The State School has commenced operations, a start being made on Monday last with 13 pupils, a very lucky number Mr. Editor.
April 3rd 1913

Note: The school building spoken of here was supplied by Normal Fry on his land south of the siding.
The Government supplied School in Wolya Reserve behind the Store opened two years later ready for the 1915 School Year

May 1st 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

All the farmers around here are hustling all they know to get a fair lump of Australia under wheat. They are the most generous people in the world, they grow wheat at a loss so as to give the agents a chance of making a living, but the coming season they really expect to make a little on their sowing as Wragge predicts a better season than last. (it would not be hard to strike a better season than last) He also says seasons are to gradually improve, and that he is in communication with the sun and the moon so as to have this done.
The Woollya public dam is dry and settlers are now on new Wollya well and Wollya soak. The latter is good water, but the well is going the same as the old Wollya well, which is really only sheep water. They say sheep water Mr. Editor, because sheep can drink water as salt as the sea or fresh, whereas horses do not like it salty. Speaking of the new Wollya well reminds me, that some settlers here, who call themselves a Progress Association, wanted the Government to spend about 300 pounds ($600.00) last season by placing a windmill on the well, laying water onto the siding, and a 5000 gallon tank (20,000 liters) at each end, although the well had not been tested for quality and quantity, but thanks to other settlers objecting, it was not done and as the water is proving inferior, it plainly proves the Government should be cautious and prove things first.
There is a small craze for cycling around here and the younger settlers are practicing with a view to showing the Geraldton boys how cockies can ride.
Not much interest is being shown in the Federal elections.
A new settler has had a very rough time, what with the cost of machinery. etc., then the dry seasons on top. The last two seasons have done a great deal to choke off settlement, far more than any legislation. The money market being so tight has made matters worse, as storekeepers could not afford in many cases to give long credit. Some storekeepers have and they shall assuredly receive their reward, if not here then above.
I intend dealing, with the last Mullewa Board election in my next article, Mr. Editor, and I assure you it will be very interesting. Very funny people these roads boards, they collect taxes and promise roads.
There is no rain yet.

May 22nd 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

We have had some nice rains since my last notes, and wheat is above ground and looking very well. Farmers are smiling in most cases. Water carting has about eased, and no one knows what a relief it is to be able to say, “well no more water carting for some months.” The largest area ever under crop is in this season and a good deal of wheat under fallow also, so now we shall see how it pans out.
Wollya Dam is still being polluted by horses being allowed to roam on this reserve, the water catchment not being fence in. The Health Board should take notice of this, as settlers have to drink this water. The Mullewa Roads Board are evidently too tired to take any action although it has been brought under their notice before.
The Road Board are talking of making settlers fence along roadways so as to avoid gates. [across public roads]. This is rather premature in a new settled district which has just gone through two dry seasons with short crops. Along the Main Road is all right, and where settlers will put up abominable gates instead of buying a decent iron one, or other properly made gate[s]. I never saw in my life such a variety of gates [as] there are here. The Road Board should insist on proper gates and fastenings.

July 8th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The crops around this district are looking remarkably well, and some large areas are in this season, and with a good harvest, and the prospect of a good price,. the farmers should overtake the bad seasons. Mr. Fry has sown 600 acres under wheat this year, and others have from 400 acres [160 hectares] down to 100 acres [40 hectares], a much larger area than any former year. Alpha and Bunyip are the favourite varieties this year; most are shy of Federation. I think we could have more rain than around Geraldton, and there are some nice pools in the Kockatea Creek, and the dams are half full. The rain has been mostly of a good soaking nature.
The State School is progressing well, and has 13 scholars on the roll. It will soon be time to have a fair building put up to accommodate them. A block has been reserved in the Tenindewa Townsite for school purposes.
The Mullewa Roads Board are apparently not a very happy family, and I am told that the debates at the last meeting were of a loud nature. The writer was talking to a cockie, and asked him if he went to the Roads Board meetings. He replied: “I had no occasion. I could hear them from the Railway Station.” They must have been having some fun. Kangaroos are very plentiful round here, and are very fond of having a game in the wheat plots. They are very hard to get with the rifle, there being so much scrub, and as the settlers have a few sheep, they do not care to have to have dogs running through the paddocks. I would suggest a few real good kangaroo drives. It would be great sport, and would give them a great scare, and would effectually stop their attention to crops.

July 22nd 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Very nice rains have visited this district, and the crops are looking just the thing, and farmers faces are pleasing to behold. They could easily be tapped for a loan now if they had any money left after two dry years.
Mr.G.L.Sutton, the Wheat Commissioner, gave a very interesting and instructive lecture on wheat growing and treatment of the soil at the school on Wednesday evening. There was the largest attendance at any meeting so far in this place, over thirty being present, many from long distances.
One old lady and her daughter (new arrivals from the Old Country) came in ten mile to hear the lecture, and if they don’t succeed as wheat growers, they should, or rather they deserve to.
Mr. Sutton was favorably impressed with the country here and sees no reason why it should not grow good wheat crops, including Federation. He paid visits to many farms and considering the difficulties settlers have had to contend with for the past two seasons, I think he was satisfied. He also dealt in his lectures with rotation of crops, so as to keep the ground fertile and well stocked with proper elements, pointing out the advantage of sheep on the farm. He said all settlers should have a cow, and Mr. Editor and I should say a calf too. (I bar goats, they are too mischievous)
Its a pity that Mr. Sutton’s visit could not have extended over a day, as some things which farmers would like to talk on and get advice about, must be missed with only one day available for all, and being so scattered, we dont all want to be tied to wheat alone, as it has proved here that lucerne, field peas and sunflowers can be grown here even with years like 1911/1912. One thing I would like to see at the lecture, and that is a portion of time at the end set apart for answers to questions from farmers. This officer’s time is very valuable, and I think it could be used to far greater advantage if he were supplied with a motor car. He could see twice the number of farms in the time, besides giving so much more to farmers. In fact it would be almost as good as having two commissioners. He is without doubt, a most valuable officer, and if wheat production and improved farming do not take place it will not be the Commissioner’s fault.
Since the advent of new blood in the Mullewa Roads Board, more useful work appears to be done. I notice new roads being cut in various parts of the district.

Note; George Lowe Sutton (1872-1964) was born in Lancashire, England. He became a renowned and enduring Australian agricultural scientist and was a great friend of the famous Australian plant breeder, William Farrer, who produced the iconic variety “Federation” which was a massive breakthrough in wheat breeding in Australia at the time of Federation (1901)

August 19th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Rain, rain every day, water lying everywhere, and crops looking splendid. It is a real feast for the eyes to see nice green fields of wheat. Some crops are just coming into ear and the hay crop is assured. A real good wheat and hay harvest would be one of the things to ease the money market. With a bumper harvest there would be plenty of work in agricultural areas for the immigrants. Work has been almost at a standstill during the last year or so.
The Railway department here making improvements for the coming wheat harvest. They are lengthening the siding, also the ramp and generally making things better. One important matter they are overlooking is the provision for loading and unloading sheep. A number of settlers have sheep and no doubt before long we will all have them. The only convenience for loading sheep at the moment is an old broken down sheep race. A cheap yard could easily be made, and would be a great boon. It is hoped the Railway department will please note this, and the writer contends the Geraldton Chamber of Commerce should pay some attention to such matters at sidings and places outside Geraldton, because it is the country which will make Geraldton.
A new State School is wanted here badly. The present one is rather rough and in a very flat position hence the wet. In a district like this the Education Department could not go far wrong by erecting a small school. I understand a site has been reserved in the townsite.

September 5th 1913

Tenindewa Country (by “Sentinel”) [this correspondent could very possibly have been the Hon. Tom. Moore MLC, just reading between the lines]

Since I last wrote the weather conditions in this district, continue to be everything desirable, from the agriculturalists point of view. Given an extension of complacency on the part of the Celestial Weather Bureau in the shape of a fair sprinkling, during the next two months, and the whole of the crops around our circle will be holding up their heads at harvest time, unashamed and ready to challenge comparison with the best the Greenough and Irwin can show.
Appended is a list of some of our most prominent farmers, with the acreage under crop, as nearly as I have been able to get. A Meadowcroft 300: H.J.Stafford 400 acres: Hunter Brothers 450acres: N. Fry 600 acres: Pat Malony 100: Jones Brothers, 300 acres: W. Carson, 100: O’Loughlin Brothers 300: Puckle and Russell, 500: J.J. Keeffe, 300: O’Dwyer, 100: W Thomas, 100: Joe McDermot, 60 L Driscoll,100: W Coaper, 300; L.Critch 200: J Rumble, 100: Oldham and Tullock. 150: Waldeck Brothers, 100: B. Fuller, 100: J. Bowers, 100: W.Willcock, 200: L. Walker, 300: Woods and Radford, 150: Dan Cream, 200: W. Smith (oldest pioneer) 50: J. O’Callaghan, 100: Jack Giles, 50: T. Criddle, 150: May and Son, 250: F Green, 150: H. Johnson, 100: Inspector Homes, 300: Tiller brothers, 300: W. Stokes, 100: M.F. Troy, 100: G. McArlie, 100:
As most of these have been but a short time tackling their holdings and have met with severe rebuff at the outset from an unpropitious season, the result they have already achieved speaks volumes for their grit and perseverance. they are truly, of the stuff of which is manufactured “a bold yeomanry, their country’s pride”
Even the above incomplete category will give your readers some approximate idea of the importance which agriculture is assuming in this hitherto contemned and belittled country. It shows that over 8,000 acres (3200 hectares) are under crop this year, in this comparatively small belt, which with ordinary good luck–or maybe a bit chucked in–should pan out 160,000 bushels of wheat [est. 1.5 tonne per hectare]. Also, an immense amount of fallowing has been, and is being done, and the acreage next season should be double or treble as great.
Mullenising, tractor-rolling, and burning off are in full swing, and everything points to the Tenindewa cum Mullewa wheat area becoming one of the most important in the whole province–not even excepting the marvelous Three Springs.
Socially, I have next to nothing to record. Mullewa, of course, is our head centre, as regards relaxation or amusements, with Tenindewa Town kicking up feebly occasionally. Your Mullewa correspondent seems a bit torpid. Anyway he (or she) doesn’t spend a fortune in copy-paper and stamps. At one time the “Express” was fairly deluged with correspondence from Warren-town, [Warren was the Mullewa Road Board Chaiman at that time] and there was no lack of quill-drivers, of various sexes, ready to jot down all the news, and furnish elaborate reports of everything that occurred in that wind-swept town, and a lot that didn’t. But now-adays, one hears mighty little of it. Perhaps Governor Barran may take a trip there during his visit next week, and that may shake up the local scribe a bit, particularly if Lady Barron come along.
In another letter, I hope to induce the aid of the editorial fountain pen, and the best leaded type, towards persuading the Government to acquire and throw open thousands of acres of good available land in this vicinity, besides preparing for selection other blocks already in their own hands. They made a decided blunder in not purchasing the Lawes Estate, when they had the chance. Even, now, an absentee holds 13,000 acres (5100 hectares) of this valuable country, every inch of which would be eagerly snapped up by legitimate settlers. If properly subdivided and reasonable terms, such as the Bath Department gives, were asked. Further, I propose to give an unbiassed account of that very live body, the Mullewa Roads Board (which hasn’t always born the reputation of being a happy family) and will perhaps, be able to show cause, why the Board is deserving of more generous assistance from the Treasury than it heretofore has received.

September 16th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)

We have had nice rains again, and I think crops are assured round this district. Messes Stafford and Son were to commence cutting some nice Alpha for hay on Monday the 15th. The hay is about five foot (1.52 meters) high, and a nice even crop. The ears on this crop are very large, many exceeding six inches (15.24 cm). I think this will be the earliest part for new seasons chaff in the Victoria District. Alpha seems to do better than any other variety of wheat in the Mullewa area, and a good many are promising that they will Alpha in next year. A farmer from Mullewa the other day remarked he was glad there was one sensible farmer in Tenindewa, because this farmer had nearly all Alpha sown.
The improvements at the railway siding are progressing well, but the waiting shed should be shifted to its new site at once, as at present customers are put to great inconvenience to obtain goods or parcels. They have to go round about 3/4 of a mile (1 kilometer) to the new level crossing or carry them about 50 yards (45 meters) and get them through a 7 wire fence, one barb. They are building a goods shed, which could easily wait till after the waiting shed was removed. There are no signs of the sheep loading yard yet. Surely the Railway Department will not take the men away from here till this very necessary matter is taken in hand.
A funny thing happened at Mr. Sutton’s lecture here recently on wheat growing. He was showing a crop with manure and one without manure, and funny to relate [but] a man with a bald head was sitting in front of the lantern and where he had the fringe of hair just met the “with manure” and his bald patch “without manure”. There was a general laugh and the lecturer asked him to bob his head down.
A new road is badly wanted through Wollya Reserve (945) to the new entrance to the siding level crossing, otherwise farmers at the west end will have an extra mile tacked on to the present distance. The Mullewa Roads Board might note and help.
Farmers around here appreciate the bag and wheat quotes [prices] given in your paper. It is a good help to them.

October 28th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Messrs. Stafford and Sons have taken off a very nice hay crop of 50 acres for a yield of 80 tons. The variety was the good old wheat “Alpha”–it should be called the reliable. Hay cutting is general and most have now finished and some very nice stuff has been cut. Crops generally are looking very well and stripping will begin in a few days now as the fields are looking ripe. Grass is very plentiful and there will be a great danger of fires this year so all should be very careful until crops are sold of protected.
We had some visitors to our district lately in the shape of several Bank Managers accompanied by our good friend Mr. Pat Stone. They had a poor impression of things around here prior to their visit, but now, I believe cocky could tap them for a loan after what they saw. They were really surprised at the possibilities of this district, and the good country seen and the amount of good feed going to waste. If banks were not so close with their funds some of it could be earning good interest with no risk in providing sheep for this district. There is room for thousands, and the lamb trade people need not be afraid of a shortage as thousands [of them] could be raised around here yearly.
The State School site has been inspected and it is hoped the new building will be provided for the teacher, It is very badly needed.
Our siding is looking very spic and span and under new paint. We now have a good ramp, nice good shed and waiting room but no provision for trucking our sheep. It would only cost a few pounds and would be a great boon for the settlers. I know one settler that had to lift lift 75 fat sheep on to the top deck [of a stock carriage] and it was no fun. Others drive (herd) their sheep to Mullewa which means anything from 10 to 15 miles. A few old sleepers would provide a small yard but the railways are like the cow’s tail…..always behind. They will do it after we have put up with a lot of inconvenience for a few years
Quite another nice green crop of wheat is growing since the hay was cut, and my word, wouldn’t some lambs eat it and put on fat, and bring in boodle?

December 6th 1913

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)

Farmers are very busy harvesting the golden grain, and so far they are satisfied with the yields. nothing under 15 bushels has been bagged, while others are up to 30 bushels. What about squaring accounts this year this year? It looks good enough for farmers to do it, or nearly so. A number of trucks of wheat have already gone to Geraldton, but the Railway Department have apparently the W.A.T.F., and there are trucks of wheat at Tenindewa siding now that were loaded last week, one last Wednesday and one last Saturday. I thought the Railway department kept a record of all trucks daily movement. It strikes me only some have a weekly movement. The Geraldton officials should watch the siding closer, as farmers have engagements to meet and these delays at sidings are most unsatisfactory. No sheep yards have been built here yet. Will Mr. Sam Elliott please take notice as we have no member now.
The Mullewa Roads Board have notified farmers that that they have to erect 14 ft (3.2 meters) gates across public roads, and to put up a notice printed with letters not less than 4 inches long (10.1 centimeters) (“Public Road”) It is just as well to advise the public that they are roads, as in many cases they would not know they were. I suppose the wise men who meet in Perth re. Roads Board Conference are responsible for this printing business and 14 foot gates’ It may be all right in old settled districts, but after two seasons of failure of crops it is on a par with the prosecuting for rates recently. While on this prosecuting for rates, I wonder why the Board doesn’t insist on their secretary (a very capable officer) prosecuting these cases instead of putting the defendants to the expense of a lawyer, as well as secretary’s costs etc.
The roads are getting in a very bad state with wheat carting and perhaps will send the supervisor round to see where a bit of gravel would mend matters and improve all roads a bit, instead of spending all the money on a couple of roads.
Tenindewa has a good shed at the Railway Siding, but it is not equipped with a wheat truck [trolley] or scales. If the superintendent only heard the language of the poor farmer when trying to push trucks at the siding he would send out a pinch bar at once.”
Whenever any land is thrown open around here it is snapped up at once, and still a number of people want land in our neighborhood.

March 5th 1914

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

All the farmers around here are finishing harvest and trucking wheat and most are satisfied. Some came out well whilst others have some arrears to wipe off, but it cannot be expected that one fair year will clean up two bad years. Most are again plowing so as to make the coming year a winning one. Mr. Norman Fry is commencing to build a nice new residence , and I understand Mr. Bert Crothers, of Geraldton, has the contract. This building shows that farmers will do well here if given a chance and have anything like success.
Wollya dam, the source of domestic supply for Tenindewa, is in disgraceful condition.
The catchment is only a manure heap, and the Roads Board of Mullewa had their attentions drawn to it long since, but nothing has been done to fence the catchment in. I noticed the other day refuse floating about the dam whilst the pump was out of order. It takes hors for settlers to get a load of water. I hope our representative will attend to this urgent matter.
Wollya Well also needs attention as the buckets leak badly. Surely some members of the Roads Board could keep an eye on these things, or the supervisor could give them occasional attention.
In my opinion Roads Boards are a failure, and the money could be spent by a Government official. Then it would be spent where wanted and things kept in repair.
What has become of the Mullewa Health Board and their inspector to allow a water catchment to go unfenced, with the result that the water gets polluted to the risk of the health of the settlers. Perhaps the Central Health Board will take a hand in the matter.
The dams are all drying up and water carting is the order of the day. It is dead horse work and stops many an acre of wheat from being put in.
I notice a fair quantity of new farm machinery still arriving, and the settlers must have confidence in the place.
The south side of the railway


played the north side in a cricket match last Sunday and the north proved too strong for the south. The south want a return match, and Farmer Keeffe expects to do great things then with his under-below bowls. It was a really enjoyable match.

April 25th 1914

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The farmers around here are as busy as the little bee, and hence ploughing is well advanced, and some have commenced to seed already, too partly I think from last season’s experience. The early crops caught the disease and the later ones escaped. Altogether 30.000 bags [2,500 tonne] of grain went from this siding this year and taking everything into consideration the railway treated us well. With a few good seasons this place is sure to become very popular for wheat production. Mr. Fry’s new residence is nearing completion and the contractor Mr. Bert Crothers, is making a very nice job of it. It is pleasant to see these nice homesteads going up, and it and it is a good sign and plainly proves that the farmer will win through all right, notwithstanding bad seasons.
The Roads Board apparently would rather see farmers carry water up the side of Wollya Dam and lift it into tanks rather than mend the pump or put a new one on the dam. The worthy chairman told the members it was not worthwhile repairing he pump or getting a new one (a matter of 45 shillings [$4.50]) as there was not enough water in the dam. Since that time, they have carried out of the dam, up its sides and over the wire fence 30,000 gallons [115,000 liters]. There is a gate at the dam, but the Roads Board locked this up to keep the refuse out of the dam. The catchment is all exposed to stock, and as this is the settlers drinking supply, the Board of Health should take a hand, as the Roads Board will do nothing. I maintain that the supervisor should present a report on all complains and work.
There are two wells on the Wollya Reserve for the use of the settlers, but they are both out of order. There are no buckets or ropes on one, and both buckets on the other are in leaky condition. Surely some members of the Roads Board will take these matters up and have them thrashed out. A number of settlers have sent a joint complaint to the Minister for Works. It is a common sight to see four teams waiting for water and delayed by defective, or no, means of getting water.
Farmers do not view with pleasure the altered Game Act, another means of taxing the farmer, as if the fertilizer penalty is not enough. It is a motto of pay, pay, pay, and tax, road board rates, dog and wheel tax, health rate tax, customs and if you have any left, income tax.

May 28th 1914

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Things are very lively with the cocky round here; he is trying to be in a lot of places at the one time. Talk about a busy man; well, he is one. He wants to finish plowing, seeding, vote for members of the Legislative Council, vote for the Roads Board members and between the lot he has to hustle. In the council elections things seemed evenly divided between the farmer and the Labour man. Now-a-days people won’t vote what is best for the country, but you can hear them say which side can we get the most from. Speaking of elections this Government does the business cheaply. Fancy giving a man one pound ($2.00) to stay in crib from 8 am to 7 pm as a presiding officer. Now the Federal Government do things in style, and they give for the same service 2 pounds ($4.00) to the presiding officer, and 15 shillings ($1.50) to the poll clerk. Why the difference between Federal and State?
The Road Board nominations are due on Saturday next, and the polling takes place on the following Saturday. An election of Roads Boards members is one of the funniest things out. Ballot papers are issued before the nominations are declared, hence the man who gets about early has a lot of votes in before nominations even close. The Murchison Road Board are very liberal this time, and are allowing settlers to vote, who have never had to pay any rates so far, and who are not liable for one, two or three years yet, as the case may be. If this is in accord with the Act, then it is different to the way the Geraldton Board acts. They will not let ratepayers vote who have not paid up their current rates. Another thing, fancy holding an election in the West Ward of Mullewa District and having no polling place. How’s that for strong? We certainly have two postal officers in out of the way localities. The whole election for members of the Mullewa District Roads Board next Saturday, in my opinion, will be informal and could be upset.
We had a shower of rain the other night, the first since last winter. The ground was wet about an inch under the surface. It came on during the night, and you don’t know Mr. Editor what pleasant music it is to hear rain falling. It was not quite enough to start the early sown wheat. Many farmers are sowing their early sown wheat late this season, they have found it a mistake to sow too early.
Mr. N. Fry’s new residence of seven rooms is now completed and tenanted. It is a very pretty building, so some must be getting on the right side of the ledger.
My word Mullewa is a stony place, and Arbor Day there is no joke. I saw a labourer with sweat on his brow, digging a hole about a cubic yard. I asked him who was to be buried and he said: “Me I think if I stick at this game.” He added I have tried all tools, most explosives, and now must try some more powder. Fancy taking a day over a cubic yard hole to plant a tree in, to shade the future generations or perhaps the hungry goats in dry weather.

July 18th 1914

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

This district has been experiencing a very dry time, just enough rain to bring crops up nicely but not enough to send them along, and we have had the heaviest frost for years. Morning after morning it has been as white as a sheet all over and bitterly cold. But things have changed. Yesterday nice rains set in, and we must have had about an inch [25mm], and the crops are growing already, and water carting is now finished for this season. (Fancy carting water in July) There are some nice pools in the creek and some dams have a fair quantity in them. You should see the cockies faces today–all smiles. It would be a good time to borrow a fiver from them. Their faces looked very glum a bit back; you would think they had lost a bob [10 cents] and found sixpence [5 cents]. If the weather remains seasonable from this [time] on there should be some nice crops to reap. There is a very large area in–about 6000 acres [2400 hectares] of wheat and barley.
The Roads Board election has finished, and our farmer Mr. W. H. Stokes was elected to represent the West Ward, which he appears to be doing very well. Mr. Fry who was the other candidate, was defeated by a small majority. The other Wards are the same as formally.
The farmers are starting to fallow now, as the ground is well wet; wet for a good distance in. There will be more fallow this year that any previous one and with a fair season or two more [farmers] will be on their legs, and will only crop-fallow, which no doubt is the only road to success. To give one instance of fallow for [the] past season, Mr. Maloney, of Tenindewa, fallowed 120 acres [48 hectares] and took off 1200 bags of wheat [100 tonne or 2 tonne per hectare], and from examination of the fields when taken off there must have been a couple of bushels per acre, lost. This ground was ploughed with a disc plough, then spring- toothed cultivated before drilling in the seed and some (where the best crop, 33 bushels, was taken off) was that sandy that 5 big horses were stuck up with 20 bags of wheat on.

  • [That rain event reported in July of 1914 (as above) turned out to be the biggest fall of the growing season and precious little fell thereafter making it one of the driest winters ever in Tenindewa. 1914 was an Australia wide drought]

September 29th 1914

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Things around this district are as bad as they can be and few, if any farmers will have any crop to take off. Some may take a little hay, but the majority will have to buy grain to put in the 1915 crop. There will not be one bag of wheat produced east of Northern Gully hence farmers will require seed wheat and manure from now on till the 1915 crops are ready.
Around Tenindewa there are as good a lot of farmers as in any district know to me. No town man knows the way they have battled through the last 4 years. It has been hard toil, early and late gathering crops in, and then on Sunday having to cart water and do odd jobs, and now with this season an absolute failure, it naturally has a great depressing effect, and many of the farmers would prefer fighting the Germans to farming. Still with fair assistance from the Government they will make a good account of themselves for the 1915 crop, and no doubt will make good with those business people who have trusted them.
Some of the farmers are making a little money renting their paddocks to the sheep and cattle owners, and others are getting a few sheep on their own account.
Election matters are very quiet, rarely talked about war. The war has caste its shadow over such small matters.

October 3rd 1914

An Object Lesson at Tenindewa

(To the Editor)

Sir, – I your issue of the 29th [previous article] your Tenindewa Correspondent stated, “That not one bag of wheat will be produced east of Northern Gully “.
That statement is absolutely untrue, for we have at Tenindewa on Messes. Dunkin and Valentines property we have as fine a crop of wheat as one would wish to see anywhere. The area of the field is I think 110 acres [44 hectares] 70 acres [30 hectares] of which carry a crop of Fairbank wheat, standing fully 3ft 3 inches high [1 meter] and as level and uniform as it could possibly be. The ears are filling nicely and are of fair average size, while the flag is broad and of a healthy dark green colour with any amount of sap in the straw. The balance of the field was sown to Bunyip wheat, and though not so tall, is equally as promising as the other portion. I estimate the field would yield if stripped, 14 bushels per acre [1 tonne per hectare] without another drop of rain on it, and if cut for hay would go 15 cwt per acre. The actual rainfall was 333 points [82 mm], while 472 points [117 mm] only have fallen in the last 12 months. Mr. Valentine and Dunkin deserve great credit for having achieved such good results on such light rainfall, as they have clearly demonstrated that by following the correct methods good results can be obtained on three and a quarter inches of rain. [90mm] The field was fallowed with a mouldboard plow in July,1013, and it was lightly cultivated with a spring tooth cultivator in the early part of the summer. Sometime later it was harrowed. Sheep had access to the paddock almost continually, therefore no weeds were allowed to grow. The soil is a fairly stiff red loam and was originally timbered with York gum and jam. The amount of moisture that has been conserved from the previous winter is clearly shown by the row of cork trees that have sprung up on the boundary. These trees have grown from 8 to 12 feet [2.5 to 4 metres] during the last 12 months and on close inspection one notices the huge roots that they have sent out on the one side only, extending far into the fallowed ground in search of moisture. The are several other paddocks on the holding under wheat, oats, barley, each carrying its own lesson to the careful observer, and many profitable points can be picked up by a visit to this farm at this time of year. The visitor will always receive a hearty welcome from the owners, who delight in showing one whatever is to be seen and in giving the fullest details of their methods. There are a few other farms in this locality that will yield from 3 to 5 cwt cwt [hundredweight] per acre of hay, but I think have written enough to show that at least a few bags of wheat will be grown east of Northern Gully.
Yours etc.
Norman Fry, 1/10/1914

October 29th 1914

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

We have had a few showers lately but not enough to supply the pools or dams with any water. Settlers are (almost all of them) water carrying now, and this is a pleasure to look forward to until May, unless we are fortunate in [getting] a good thunderstorm during the summer.
A few farmers are trying to take a bit of wheat off, and others a bit of hay, but it is a most trying occupation. I am still of the opinion no wheat will go from this district. I believe Messes Valentine and Dunkin have a nice crop of Fairbank, but how it will pan out is hard to say. Anyhow they will have plenty of seed and a bit to spare. I do not know anyone else who will have enough seed? Still if they get a few bags towards it [seed-wheat] it will be something.
Some farmers have this month received notice from Geraldton storekeepers that their credit is stopped, and to reduce accounts. This seems a very strange proceeding in the face of Government promising to guarantee their accounts. Surely, they were in a better position with the Government guarantee than without it? This will drive trade to other markets, and farmers must combine and obtain their stores in a lump and then distribute. They could buy wholesale and distribution would be nothing. The poor farmer is up against a hard lot so are the storekeepers and businessmen generally, what with the war and the bad season.
It’s time the Government told the farmer straight out what they are going to do. Then they will know what to do. Its certain they will not stay on their holdings without tucker etc.
The ground is very hard and the ploughing a difficult matter. A good fall of rain would soften it and be of great value and I’m sure the horses would appreciate it.
Mr. Stafford has struck good sheep water on his run and has sunk a well. and erected a windless and is going in for a few sheep.

January 5th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Since the heavy rain of November, a good deal of ploughing has been done. This should be almost equal to a fallow [ie fallow done in the August of 1914 which was not possible due to wipe out drought] for the next crop. The rains freshened up all the feed and made nice growth in grass and salt bush, and they look really splendid. A number of unemployed have been passing along and asking for work of any kind. It is a shame to this country to see men idle, when they could have been put on good and productive work. Take one case only. There are thousands of acres of good mallee and scrub land here which could be cut down at 10 shillings per acre [$1.00 per .4 of a hectare] and when cleaned up for ploughing is worth 20 shillings per acre at least [$2.00 per .4 of a hectare]
If the Government were to allow these men to take so many acres each and pay them the 10 shillings per acre, the work to be done to the satisfaction of the former, or a farmer appointed in each district, and a farmer to arrange the burning off and the clearing up, this would give the Government 20 shillings worth of security for the 10 shillings [outlaid by them]
The 10 shillings could be charged with interest to the farmer over a period to be arranged. All the Government would need to do would be to find the 10 shillings per acre and pay on the farmer’s certificate [account]. This would enable a larger quantity of wheat to be put in, [and] even in this year, and bring about better farming later on and earlier than the present conditions [arrangements] by allowing [a] fallow.
The Roads Board woke up the other day, after months of waiting and they put the pump in working order at Wollya dam and the wells also. Still, I notice cows in the dam enclosure, and this is the water we drink!

February 25th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

During the summer we have had splendid rains in this district and the ground is in very fine condition to produce a big harvest next year. The writer tips a big season for the following reasons—The drought has completely broken on the Murchison, and we have shared the thunderstorms to the extent of some inches. [millimeters] On the coast it has been normal as it is not usual to get summer rains there and during [the] growing period we get our rains from the coast. So, things appear to be working for a good season, and I think an early one. The Kockatea Gully here is full of lovely pools and has been so for months past. No one would think this a dry area. Farmers have had practically no water carting and the ground being in such good condition for working they are well ahead with their ploughing, but the matter now rests with the Farmers Assistance Board [I.A.B] to get farmers along their wheat planting preparations promptly so that advantage can be taken of the favorable conditions.
If we get good crops, then the fun will begin. As far as I can make out the Board will have first cut at proceeds of the crop by taking all overdue rents and Agricultural Bank money, then they take half a year’s current rent, etc. after that the cocky gets 25 percent of what is left? What will the cocky [actually] get? The Government insists on labourers getting a living wage. Why should that not apply to the cocky too?
There has been no wheat sent from here [Tenindewa] during the past season and farmers, almost to a man have to buy seed.
Why is meat so dear in Geraldton when such poor prices are paid to by the buyers for sheep and pigs? Fancy a butcher refusing 25 shillings [$2.50] for a 60 lb. dressed pig and he sells it at 10 pence per lb.?
The farmer is not allowed by law to kill and dress spare stock unless he pays 5 pounds [$10.00] for a license and other costs.

March 2nd 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)
Leo reports on himself (and his brother Tom) in this article for the one and only time.
In the story written by Kathleen Palmer “Memories of a Migrant” (page 30) this story gets a more detailed airing.

A real live hurricane visited Tenindewa on Thursday night last. (25th February 1915)
Things began to get very lively about 9.00 PM and up to 11,00 PM we had just as full and exciting time as anyone would wish and some very close calls to a funeral occurred. However, they say all’s well that ends well and this is so far as life is concerned. The wind must have reached 80 miles an hour [130 kilometer per hour] and every building I know of must have suffered.
To commence with, Mr. Fry’s new residence suffered by the loss of a few sheets of iron and his late residence, a fairly large iron building was blown to the ground.
,s.
Mr. Sid Green, the railway ganger [“ganger” denotes the man in charge of the railway gang] suffered too. A large York gum fell right across his house, on the portion that the Post Office is kept in, crushing it flat to the ground. They were all in an adjoining room and they lost no time in vacating it and passed up the rest of the night in the railway Goods Shed. The telephone room at the same place is now standing wrong end up.
Mr. Stokes had to strain all his muscles to hang onto his house all night.
Mr. Tom Shaw had a very trying time too and had just managed to get his wife, who had just fainted, from the house when it turned over. (see note at bottom of page)
Messrs. Palmer and Johnson suffered by the loss of [roofing] iron etc. Fortunately Mr. Palmer had plenty of assistance so they managed to hold their roof together. Mr. Johnson and his family had to pass the night under his dray and it rained inches [an inch is 25mm] during that time, but all the outhouses were destroyed.
Brenkley Bros. house turned partly over and is uninhabitable.
Mr. Stafford lost all of his outhouses and found some of his iron; some he thinks is down Mingenew way and he is not looking for it. A few sheets of iron came off his residence also. All the settlers suffered to a considerable extent, but a few I have not heard from. The creek is running a banker and the ground is soft.
Hundreds of York gum trees and other have blown down and in some places, acres of trees have been levelled to the ground. It is an ill wind that blows nobody any good and in this case I have heard of a man just closing for 100 acres [40 hectare] clearing contract and 1/2 his stuff has been blown over. Anyhow we are not anxious for another blow. It is the worst I have ever seen.

………………………………………………………………………………………

Guardian Note; The storm caused extensive damage to many towns around Geraldton and beyond. Similar stories were received by the Geraldton Guardian from Northampton, Carnarvon, Cue and Mingenew, as well as smaller centres such as Nabewa, Yuna and Tenindewa.

……………………………………………………………………………………………….

2015 Note; Mullewa, according to BOM records received 70 mm of rain from the 24th to the 26th of February and 100 mm for the month; Geraldton very similar: Northampton 100 mm for those three days and 140 mm for the month at places as far away as Cue with 50 mm for the same period. One could imagine rivers such as the Greenough would have run some huge amount of water on that occasion.
Incidentally, in roughly the same calendar space in 2000 cyclone Steve dumped similar amounts of rain in the area and earlier in the N.T, and Qld. It was the wettest system ever recorded to affect Australia. (The Tenindewa/Bindu gauge received 100 mm from Steve}

……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Guardian Note; Elisabeth (Kember) Shaw was seven months pregnant with her 3rd child Thomas when it happened, so no wonder she fainted. Elisabeth’s young sister, Chris aged 14, was staying with the family at the time and probably Elisabeth through the pregnancy.

June 12 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Well, a farmer’s lot is not a happy one, what with the bad seasons, pressing creditors, and getting this year’s crop in. Still, it might be a lot worse so we should smile.
The Farmers Assistance Board came in for a lot of abuse of various kinds, and perhaps they deserved some of it. Still, it was a mighty big undertaking to have to fix up probably 80% of the farmers with seed, manure, horse feed, living, etc…and taking everything into consideration, they have not done so badly. I think the lucky farmers, who had spare wheat, could have helped the unlucky ones a bit more by coming forward with their spare stuff more promptly.
I think there will be some fun when harvest comes off, because a great deal of the seed supplied is un-named, and a lot ungraded, so I anticipate the greatest mixed crops this season that ever have been seen in W.A. and dirty fields, consisting of wild radish, oats etc. Stripping will be hard with the stuff of various heights.
Most of the farmers in this district have finished seeding, and some nice crops are above the ground, some being nine inches high. A larger area is in this season around here, but unfortunately almost all of it is late variety seed.
Lovely rains are falling at nice intervals. The ground is well soaked and there is plenty of feed coming along.
The Methodists have started to hold services here monthly, and it is well supported. We want a public hall here for the benefit of settlers in General

August 10th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Rain, rain rain, almost every day for over two months, and still no appearance of casing. I suppose it is right to growl, last year not enough, this year too much. We could well do with a few of weeks of dry weather, as most of the crops are showing the effects of too much rain. Still, they are remarkably good looking, and some very forward and fine crops are about. Mr. Fry has some nice Fairbank, and a small paddock of Mr. Fry’s, near the siding, loos well. There is a very large area in this season. I will quote you the figures which are only approximately correct:
Mr. Keeffe 700 acres, Mr. Hunter 700 acres, Mr. Couper 500 acres, Mr. Fry 600 acres, Mr. Stokes 300 acres, Mr. Loughan 100, Mr. Rumble 250, Mr. Meadowcroft 300, Mr. Oldam 300, Mr. Critch 130, Mr. McGuinness 300, Mr. Troy 150, Mr, Gruen 300, Mr. Malone 200, Mr. Stafford 325, L. Stafford 30, Messes Valentine and Dunkin 600, Messes Palmer and Mullivan 100, Mr. Cromlin 130, Mr. Johnson 150, Mr. Curtis 200, Brinkley brothers 300, Mr. Cirboy 200, Messes Brooks, Clarke, Jose and Brand out on the Greenough river all have good crops in, and looking well. All of the above cart to Tenindewa and Indarra, the total area under wheat being about 7000 acres, which is the highest of any season yet. Some very fair vegetable gardens are also doing well, and a few are trying maize in a small way, but I’m afraid it has been put in too early.
Australia Day was celebrated at Mullewa, to which place a fair a fair number of Tenindewa people, and almost all of the settlers contributed something in cash or kind so that Mullewa will send a nice little cheque in.
Around here at present is a perfect flower garden, and the beauty of the blending colours is something worth seeing. You may talk about the Murchison and other places but, for a pretty spot and feed galore give me the Kockatea Gully.
All the stock in this district are fat and frisky, and water is everywhere and if a person gets off the road, he promptly gets bogged. Carting in the bush lands is now impossible.
The war causes a lot of talking and though here, and the shortness of news coming along, is very trying. We get mail from Geraldton from Friday till Monday. A recruiting officer should get a few good able -bodied men around here and Mullewa. If I were only a young man, this country could not hold me. It’s worth the risk of being killed to have the trip and look at the sport of getting fit, a really live physical training. We may as well die as become Germans and to say, fight to the last man, and Australia will be there at the finish I couldn’t think much of the young men who can go but won’t. Of course, many in the farming industry cannot go, but some can and won’t. That is where compulsory service is good. If Germany wins Australia will get a bad time, so I hope it will be to a finish
A good many bachelor farmers are talking of matrimony after this crop come off. What a lot is to be from this crop.

August 20th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The beautiful sunshiny days we are now having after the continuous wet weather will gladden the hearts of farmers. Ever since the beginning of the year the weather has all that could be desired. The rainfall since the growing season commenced is as follows;- May 225 points [56mm] June 355 pts [88 mm] July 313 pts [78mm] August 128 pts [32mm] to date. The rainfall for the year to date is 16 inches [400 mm]. We have had no frosts so far this winter…and vegetation of every description has made marvelous growth. The wildflowers are very numerous and beautiful. The individual blooms beat anything I have seen foe size and excellence, and I think we have a greater variety than I have ever noticed previously. Of stock feed we have an abundance. The crops are making great headway. many of them are already higher than the fences. Mr J J Keeffe has commenced hay cutting and Messes Hunter, Fry, Valentine and Dunkin will shortly follow his example. I notice the wild radish has made its appearance in several fields. The owners should lose no time and spare no energy in ridding this hitherto clean district of this pest. There are over 7,000 acres under wheat in this district and many big yields expected.
I am sorry that I cannot send along a list of recruits for the army from this locality, but so far not a single individual has volunteered, although we have quite a number of able-bodied young men here who should make excellent soldiers. Perhaps after all they can best serve their country by following the plough and doing their bit by growing wheat with which to feed the Empire.
Mr. F. Fuller has just completed a comfortable three-bedroom house on his selection here, and the conclusion one naturally draws is that he is contemplating passing through the third era of life.
We wish him peace and prosperity.

August 28th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Owing to the abnormal conditions since November last in having rain every few weeks, the growth of the suckers and seedlings has been very great and has caused a good deal of labour and expense to farmers. In some cases, it has been nearly as bad as having to clear the areas all over again.
Bindu Dam is making fair progress under the management of Mr. Stokes. This dam will be a great help to farmers along the Kockatea Gully, but it is a pity that it was not started months earlier, so that it could have filled for summer use. I’m afraid it will be finished too late for the rains. This will mean days of man and beast wasted carting water long distances, instead of doing develop work on farms and thus increasing the security of the Agricultural Bank.
What is the use of the Wheat Commissioner to the farmers of this district, what good do we receive from his experience and knowledge? I only know of his having been around here once. If he cannot visit us, surely, he has some way of letting the way back farmers know what is doing in his line, what is being done at the State Farms, what new crops to try and such matters. Could he not distribute amongst farmers around here some new kind of wheat or other grain for trial? Could he not have a column in some weekly paper for the benefit of farmers in general instead of him being used in the favorable districts. We are entitled to something. Our member might take a hint.
Noxious weeds are very much in evidence on the public roads and farms. What is wrong with the Road Board that they do not take action. I suppose it is this “wait a while policy” so much in evidence? Farmers would clear their farms if the Road Board cleared their roads.
Federation wheat, which has been cracked up so much, has been tried around this part for a year, but so far as I can see it is not the wheat for this district. It is a wheat with a poor constitution and will not stand wet or dry weather. If we get a lot of rain, it shows mildew promptly and does not grow, and is the first to put up the distress signal if a dry period comes along.
Farmers are busy fallowing. They have been delayed in starting owing to too much rain. In consequence I do not think there will be a very large area of good fallow for next season’s sowings.
The police are around taking crop expectations. I do not think the average will be a very large one, as many of the late crops are very backward, and are the wrong kinds of wheat, vis, late wheats sown late.

September 7th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The weather is finer, and things are growing well. A few farmers are already cutting hay, and they anticipate a two ton [per acre] yield. It is a record early time for hay in this district [and] Messrs. Keeffe, Hunter and Fry are cutting. The wheat that has done the best for hay is Fairbank. It is a very vigorous and quick grower, and is a half-sister to that good yielder Bunyip
I wonder why the wheat supplied from Geraldton to farmers was not graded. I note Commissioner Sutton lays great stress on graded seed. That supplied from Northam was graded. I suppose anything was good enough for the Victoria District cocky, and there was plenty of wild radish, mustard, etc. in the wheat supplied. One farmer cleaned 5 bags of rubbish out of 40 bags supplies and the funny thing is the graded wheat was supplied to the newest settlers, and [at] that, very late.
The result will be very poor crops, because their land was not fallowed and, in some cases, [fallowed] fairly rough.
Ice plant and Perkels, two creeping weeds, took possession in a good many crops in the late sown wheat and [it] creeps all over the ground and forms a quite a dense and thick patch. The early sown and early wheat appear to do better in a very wet season than the later varieties, even when the late varieties are sown early. That is my impression from the observations around here. I am satisfied also that around here there is no place in ordinary seasons for late varieties like Yandilla King and Dart’s Imperial and so on. They take too long to grow. Yandilla King put in [this] last April is not out in ear yet!

Mixed farming is what is wanted here, and a few sheep, pigs and cows, enough to supply the family with butter, cheese, milk, etc. and not forgetting a few cacklers. I know on farmer who has 33 suckers from 3 sows, and nice pigs too. They will weigh over 30 lbs. each [14 kgs] dressed at two months –990 lbs. [41 kgs] at sixpence per pound [weight]—24 pounds 15 shillings [currency] —better than wheat.

October 7th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

A number of farmers have finished hay-cutting, the yields being very satisfactory, and far greater than any other known around this district. Some have realized fine prices in Perth for new season’s chaff, particularly Messrs. O Keeffe and Hunter.
Wheat crops are very promising and almost free from disease. Occasionally a little rust is met with under the flag, but not enough to affect the yield. I think the average over here will be at least 20 bushels per acre. Better crops it would be hard to find anywhere. They are in most cases well grown, healthy and thick
Warm weather is fast approaching, the temperature for the last few days being between 80 and 90 degrees [27 and 35 degrees Celsius], and feed is so plentiful, unless settlers are very careful some will be burned out. Grass is already getting dry enough to burn.
Some settlers are busy trying to catch rabbits, owing to the Inspector looking around. It is not much use a few settlers trying to trap if they all dont follow suit. What is wrong with the Government trapping on their land adjoining settlers; and the Road Board of their reserves?
A Farmers and Settlers Association has been formed around here, with a first rollcall of thirteen, not a very lucky number, and if it follows in the wake of the old Progress Association it won’t be much good. Bindu Government Dam is nearing completion.

October 21st 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

I predict a far smaller wheat yield this coming season than what was anticipated, as rust is very prevalent, and some crops are bad since the last rains. Hay cutting is about finished, and some is already stacked. Strong and bitter complaints are being made owing to the Railway Departments neglect to move trucks of chaff promptly from this siding. Some have taken 10 days from the loading to arrival in Perth, with the result that the sender lost pounds per ton through the delay. As the Government wants the farmers to try to make good this year, it is up to them to hold an enquiry into these delays. Then again, trucks often arrive to load chaff but with no ropes or sheets. If the Railway Department cannot handle the goods now things are slack, what will they do when wheat is coming in. Mr. Short said there would be no trouble in handling the harvest. Still, here we are at the beginning, and complains are very bitter.
A farmer here asked the Industries Assistance Board if they would pay his man his wage so he could enlist, but the Board would not. I thought that wages were the first charge against the crop, and that men were wanted for the front.
A Bindu farmer was relating his dream to the writer the other day. He said” I have had a dream about this war, and I saw an aero-plane charging a Zeppelin airship so as to destroy it, and just before the impact the man in the aero-plane dropped from his aero-plane in a parachute (like they used to do from ballooning) and landed safely on terra-firma. I just relate this as it may be useful to try.
A number of young fellows around here are anxiously waiting to finish harvest so they can get away to the war. I noticed in Mullewa a few days ago at a pub a large number of strong young men who should be at the front. Where is the recruiting sergeant? (The recruiting sergeant has been recalled to Perth: -Ed)
Since the visit of the Rabbit Inspector, rabbit pie is a common dish with the farer and his family.
School attendances have gone down considerably owing to the Railway Department removing married fettlers who has families and replacing them with others who have not.
This is not giving farmers a fair show, and the Education Department has called on those sending children to school to help pay the teacher’s salary. So, the education will cost the farmers about 5 shillings per child per month as, owing to the shortage of two scholars, the grade of the school has to reduced.


________________________________________________
The Anglican Picnic, –Early yesterday morning it appeared as if the picnic, organized by the Anglican Church, would be spoiled by the weather, but fortunately it cleared up, and a big train load of adults and juveniles journeyed out to Mt. Erin. The day continued fine but blustery, and that outing was thoroughly enjoyed.

November 20th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Three young fellows from these parts left for Geraldton yesterday to enlist for the front, Claude Wilword, Bert Jones, and Lew Stafford, and there are a few more men who should go, as the Empire’s need should come first.
The State school is at a low ebb as far as scholars are concerned, owing to the Railway Department removing married fettlers with children and sending other who have none, and this is being repeatedly done for some cause or other. It must cost money, this continually transferring men. Why the need for it [in] these hard times, and the Government so hard up? The matter is worth looking into


How the State helped the farmer to put his crop in the [1915] the following will show. It is for cropping 300 acres wheat and [for] fallow[ing] 300 acres.

The reader must surmise that “a relief package” was put together on the back of the 1914 Australia wide drought and in the face of the looming World War? See June 12th, 1915, article.

One ton of maize ……………………………………………10 pounds 11 shillings 8 pence
Freight………………………………………………………………….2 pounds 3 shillings 11 pence
Super………………(six tons 10 cwts)…………………..28 pounds 6 shillings 4 pence
Freight ………………………………………………………………..4 pounds 11 shillings 10 pence
Chaff…..(8 tons 16 cwts 1 quarter)………………..92 pounds 10 shillings 8 pence
Freight…………………………………………………………………8 pounds 4 shillings 3 pence
Wheat..(225bushels@ 7 shillings 11 pence)..89 pounds 12 shillings 3 pence (Dirty and ungraded)
Freight………………………………………………………………….2 pounds 7 shillings
Total……………………………………………………………238 pounds 12 shillings 8 pence

Now add to this amount

Ploughing @ 4 shillings/acre X 300 acres…….60 pounds
Drilling @ 2 shillings…………………………………………30 pounds
Stripping @ 8 shillings…………………………………….120 pounds
Bags …………………………………………….. inc. freight….41 pounds 17 shillings (@9 shillings and 9 pence per dozen)
Total…………………………………………………………….251 pounds 17 shillings
Grand Total…………………………………………………490 pounds 9 shillings 8 pence

Note; The author had calculated this to be ..450 pounds. But the numbers do the talking?

There are other expenses including land rent, interest, wear and tear, man and beast, etc.
Now where does the farmer come in?
Taking 25 acres for hay for next crop which
Leaves 275 acres of crop @ 12 bushels per acre yield gives 3,300 bushels
Minus 300 bushels for seed for next year……………………..gives 3,000 bushels
Which @ 3 bushels per bag……………………………………………. gives 1000 bags @ 9 shillings per bag handed out by the Government……………………………………………………..gives 450 pounds

A farmer could have made more money with less work in half a dozen old sows and be less in debt.
People say, “Young men go on the land” I say “Don’t be a mug” stay in town where there is less work and more fun. The above account is called Government assistance. The assistance was perhaps, well-meant but was a big mistake as far as the farmers are concerned. They will come out of this harvest in a worse position than the last, and as the Government has first cut from the proceeds, how are the businesspeople going to get theirs too? Then the farmer has to live, and put his next crop in. How is it to be alone? Perhaps the Hon. Minister for Land can say. One thing I know, this Act, which gave the assistance must be altered, otherwise, many farmers will go off the land. The last accounts from the Industries Assistance Board only arrived today, so farmers had no idea what putting the crop in would cost. Have the farmers had to pay the big loss on fodder? If so, it is not a fair charge against them, as I know carriers in Geraldton who wanted to buy at good prices but could not. I know farmers who have had to buy a lot of machinery, and horses and have had to pay heavy living expenses, and then cart their wheat for from 6 to 12 miles to the railways. How are these men going to balance up? The Federal Government are taking all the wheat and advancing 3 shillings per bushel. Will he farmer ever get any more than the 3 shillings per bushel? If it is run like their other trading concerns, the farmer will have no show. Why the Government wanted to interfere with the selling, I do not know, it is another move to keep the farmers in as to his position still longer, and to have his money to use until November 1916. To say the least, the whole thing is rotten; and unless some strong man is found, who can grasp the situation and has the courage to deal straightly with it, the farmers are in for a really bad time and as they say they are the backbone of the country, all other businesses must suffer. It’s not good to write with this strain, but why shirk the facts.

November 22nd 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)

Note; Leo Critch cracks mention here but interestingly the “alternative” correspondent has the pen.

Harvesting operations are in full swing on all sides, and one hears some fine yields here and there. Mr. Leo Critch had a field of Toby’s Luck yield him 25 bushels per acre (1.85 tonne per hectare). Mr. Oldham’s Federation is going 24 bushels per acre. Some of the fields have suffered from rust, although I have not heard of one yielding under 10 bushels. The most of the crop was well advanced when the rust made it’s appearance, and many of us thought the yields would not be affected by it. The heads appear to be well filled and the grain fairly plump, but when it dried we found that the heads contained a percentage of shriveled grain, and this in most cases yielded from 2 to 6 bushels per acre (75 to 200 kgs per hectare) In other places the rust appeared to have weakened the straw as well, and a fair amount has been lost by the straw breaking off at the highest joint and letting the heads down on the ground. Septoria has made its appearance in a few patches, but these were promptly turned into hay, so the loss from that source will be very light. Quite a lot of new harvesting machinery has been introduced this year. I notice 5 reaper/threshers and State Harvesters galore. Several trucks [rail wagons] of wheat have already left the district. A few have been sent to the Perth market via. Wongan Hills. This [wheat] fetched 5 shillings and 7 pence per bushel, and after deducting freight and other charges, the owners received a fraction under 4 shillings and 11 pence per bushel net. One hears rumors of wheat buyers travelling through the Eastern Districts (i.e. is along the Eastern and Great Southern railways) offering the farmers 5 shillings and 3 pence to 5 shillings and six pence per bushel for their wheat, but so far, I know not a solitary buyer has yet to come this way. Many of us are in quandary as to what to do with the wheat now that we have got it. We are waiting anxiously to see if the King’s head is still on the half-crown. Why is it that the wheat buyers are neglecting us? Is it that the Commonwealth scheme of handling the surplus has scared the wheat shark out of the business? If so, let’s hope the Victoria District will not be overlooked by those controlling the scheme. I understand there is a limited amount of space allotted to W.A. for December/January shipments. Well, who is going to look out that the Victoria District gets its share of that space? This district is perhaps the earlies in the State, and as 9/10s of our wheat will be available for shipping by the end of the year, we should be allotted the lion’s share of the space that has been allowed to W.A. for the December/January shipments. Whose business is it to see that we get it?
Our first batch of recruits left here on Tuesday last. Mr. L. Stafford, Mr. C. Millward and another [Bert Jones] have set an example to the slackers of this district and offered their services to their King and Country. I understand that two or three others are seriously “thinking about it” after the crop comes off.

Note; This last paragraph has a very sad sequel. See the second last paragraph on page 40 of Memories of a Migrant

December 14th 1915

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Farmers would like to know what they have to do with their wheat, as thousands of bags are lying out in the fields waiting for someone to whom to deliver. While this delay is going on farmers are paying interest on advances, which is no doubt helping them downward. [financially]
I think the Labour Party should have a change to the Opposition for a while. They have not covered themselves with glory in dealing with the country or the farmers. They have certainly had the most exceptional period in the history of the country, but giving all that in, they could easily have done better. If they would trust their trained civil servants more, I think there would be less bugling. It is high time that the retrenching knife was applied to the civil service generally and not leave the matter at putting off a few land inspectors. Although most people think civil servants are good for nothing after leaving their government jobs, it is a mistaken idea, and it would do a lot of them real good to be fired out and have to shift [fend] for themselves, instead of receiving every fortnight or month the consolation of a few pounds. But the Labour Government will never tackle retrenchment.
If the recruiting sergeant comes around here soon, he will find that some fine lumps of men here have finished harvesting.

December 15th 1915

To The Editor (Tenindewa and Enlistment)
[No doubt this is a response to the August 20th, November 22nd and December 14th, Tenindewa Notes immediately preceding]
The letter is signed W.H.S and would be very likely be Mr. Harry Stokes. A long residing and respected member of the Tenindewa Area.

Sir,–Being a resident of Tenindewa I wish to take exception to the misleading comments appearing in your paper from Tenindewa correspondents, who seem unusually fond of criticizing those settlers, who in their opinion should be at the front. I think your correspondents realize the urgent need for men in the firing line, and I would like to know if they have ever thought of enlisting themselves, setting an example and thereby doing more good, than columns of insults, which if taken seriously would have the effect of checking rather than encouraging recruiting.
Some readers of your paper are no doubt under the impression that this centre is over-run with wasters and slackers, while the latest edition of this clap-trap of un unclaimed letter, insinuating that the place is seething with pro- German-ism. I am wondering if he displayed judgment in not signing his name, or weather he has one. in any case when one takes into consideration that personal and not patriotic motives prompted him to try and blackmail a trusted and respected resident. I dont think anyone is anxious to make his acquaintance. I might state i have resided here a number of years, and i claim to know the views, expressed and otherwise, of every settler, and I say unreservedly there is not a German sympathizer in the place.
No one here wants reminding that the British cause is just, but I for one deplore the fact is championed by such a miserable a specimen of humanity as your correspondent in question. Notice the hypocrite’s bid for sympathy by mentioning his “dear ones in the trenches”. He pretends but I doubt if he refers to his relations; if he does let’s hope they possess some of those good qualities that make the world admire a Britisher, qualities your correspondent sadly lacks. Returning to your ordinary correspondent, does he think good soldiers are composed of that material that would be intimidated to enlist for fear of public criticism? If so, he shows his ignorance by estimating other people’s courage by his own weakness. And again, if he realizes there exists a demand for more good men, then it is his duty to enlist, and that at once. He wouldn’t be missed from here and would be no loss to Australia if he never returned. –
Yours etc.
W.H.S (Tenindewa 9th 1915)

February 1st 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The heavy storms of rain and wind on the 19th and 20th insts. did a lot of damage to standing crops around here. Some have been beaten to the ground. Messrs.’ Stafford, Oldham and Johnson have suffered a good deal and will lose a lot of crop. This is most disheartening after the severe handling this district received of late years- All the dams are full, and the creek is running strongly, and water carting has ceased. The latter is a blessing.
To show the way harvesting machines waste wheat, one has only to look at the fine green crops of wheat above ground now, perhaps this wheat will make self-sown crops for next season, if more rain comes at intervals. The late rain has made the ground very boggy, and harvesting has been stopped for a day or two since, and even now extra horses have had to be used, and they catch it hard (sic). Fortunately, most of the farmers had finished harvesting when the rain came, so they are safe. It takes a lot of rain to damage wheat when in the bags or heaps.
The State School has re-opened after the vacation and the attendance is a record one. viz 18. We have a nice little school on the town site which, by the by, some people want to move remove to a new site. Perhaps those who want to move the town site will pay the Government the cost of surveying the new one, as the Government want all their funds now.
The Railway Department is still a bit slow lifting trucks of wheat. They might take a hint, otherwise full details will be forthcoming. The delivery of goods at the sidings also leaves cause for great complaint.
Mr. Johnson, the Minister for Lands was at Geraldton recently. I wish he would enlighten the farmers what they are to receive from their crops. Say for instance a farmer has 1000 bags of wheat, and owes enough debts to swamp the whole, how much will the farmer get for his graft and hardship. Farmers cannot even afford sex or nightshirts now, and fresh meat is a luxury. Is it worthwhile to pay battling to pay one’s debts? If farmers don’t get a fair deal out of this crop many will not put any more [crops] in.

The official records for Tenindewa (08120) show that it received 65 mm on the 21st and 22nd of January 1916 and 44 mm on the 13th and 14th of February 1916. On the back of receiving 500 mm for 1915 no wonder the “creek was running”

March 25th March 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Farmers in almost all cases have finished stripping, and wheat carting, so the wheat scheme should have a very large heap of money in hand in their wheat stacks. The farmers are anxious for divi from the I.A.B. who own most farmers. I do not think there will be a large quantity of wheat grown this coming season. Most farmers are very dissatisfied at the treatment of the Board, and their methods of dealing with correspondence is absolutely the worst I have seen or heard of. [Board of the I.A.B.] Fancy three acknowledgements for interim receipts received by the one man in three separate envelopes and three stamps all the same postdate. This means two envelopes and two stamps wasted beside time etc. in a well-regulated office such a thing should not be possible.
Mr. Norman Fry has just returned from a trip East where he has been spending a six-week holiday. He is looking very well and enjoyed himself and no doubt has brought some new farming ideas back with him from the wise men of the East.
Farmers around here are considering the advisability of going in for pig-raising and in fact a few have started. This is not to be a sideline but an idea to feed all produce grown on the farm to the stock, at the expense of marketing wheat is too great to leave much profit and the price is too uncertain. If the produce was feed to pigs it would be necessary to have a bacon curing establishment in some central place in the district. Perhaps Geraldton round Bluff Point would be a good place, although nearer the stockyards would be better and by a combination of farmers the price to butchers could be fixed. I think there is a very big future ahead for this industry. More about this later.
there has been a number of thunderstorms with strong wind around here lately and they are doing considerable damage. Some time ago a few hundred acres of wheat was blown down and Messrs. Stafford and Oldham lost fairly heavily and now another storm has visited farmers and Mr. Oldham had his house unroofed and he is still looking for some of the iron, and Mr. Stafford has had his haystack damaged, and a 6000-gallon (30,000 litre) tank lifted bodily and carried through the air some 300 yards (300 meters) into the bush amongst a lot of York gum. When it landed it was a flat as a pancake and it was ruined. Another tank half the size was lifted over two fences and the outbuildings also suffered.
(Note; The Oldham residence was some 5 kilometers west of the Tenindewa Siding on the south side of the creek. The Stafford (main) residence was some 10 kilometers west of the Tenindewa siding on the west side of the creek)

June 1st 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

We have had real nice rains, some heavy showers but mostly nice soaking in rains, and wheat fields are beginning to put on a green appearance.
A few farmers are about to finish seeding, but many will not finish till the end of June. There will not be a lot of wheat sown this year, through various causes, late taking off of last harvest, shortage of labour, shortage of horses etc.
In many quarters dissatisfaction is felt at the farmers returns being received for wheat, and farmers are trying to have a flour mill erected at Mullewa. Surly it is time. Mullewa is well situated being a junction of three lines, Wongan Hills, Cue and Geraldton and the best wheat for gristing is sown in these parts, the flour should command the market. The matter is being taken up with the Government, with a view to having their assistance.
Some children do not attend the State School regularly, and they can be seen playing around their homes when they should be at school. It is time the authorities took a hand in the matter. It is hard enough to keep the school up to the required number in these districts [even] when they all attend.

August 3rd 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Splendid rains have again fallen, and the crops are looking very well and only a bit backward. Feed is scarce and very slow coming along, and stock in general might be in better condition.
Talking of stock I journeyed to the Mullewa stock sale on Friday last and there was a nice lot of stock, and a large number of buyers, and if Mullewa wants to keep these yards and the buyers, they need to wake up and get more accommodation. I heard of buyers camping in sheds, railway carriages, and all sorts of places. These buyers are a pretty tough lot and can stand roughing it with the next, still I suppose they prefer some comfort. Dalgety’s yards are well arranged and they deserve patronage and should be a boon to the district later on. The train service to Perth is rather early, hence the auctioneer has to hurry through the sale too much. The Mullewa Roads Board should take this up.
The Mullewa Roads Board is borrowing money to spend on the road leading to Hunters farm which has already had a lot of money spent on it and a meeting of ratepayers is to be held tomorrow (Sunday) to oppose it. There are other things which need attention, and are fairly entitled to be seen to, before the one mentioned.
Complaints are heard of the Wolya Dam Catchment being polluted by stock. This could be easily altered for a few pounds by shifting a few chain (a chain is twenty meters) of fencing. Roads Board please note.

September 12th 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

A fortnight ago it was freezing, and it took overcoats to keep one warm. Now alas, it is 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 degrees Celsius) in the shade, and cocky is looking for a cool place, although he is not short of a job.
Mr. Conner has paid his promised visit to these parts and farmers were greatly impressed by what he gave in his lectures. They recognized in him a practical man and capable.
His recommendations re. stud stock is all right, but why they charge settlers three pound and three shillings ($6.30) and freight for a weaner pig I cannot understand. Surely this is not encouraging pig raising. Farmers cannot make ends meet so I do not think many pigs will come this way.
Crops are looking well so far but rain is badly needed again. Most crops are in ear, and if they are to fill well, we must have rain quickly.
Tenindewa is holding a day’s sports on Saturday the 16th inst, also entertainment at night. This would be a chance for the recruiting officer, as there are some fine stamps of young men around these parts who should be fighting the Germans. May conscription soon come. Our boys [at the front] need all the help they can get.
What is wrong with a death benefit fund for farmers, on similar lines to that in the Railway Department. Surly it could be run by the Farmers and Settlers Association.
Another thing that would save farmers pounds is a crop insurance carried out by the I.A.B and I am sure if each farmer paid 90 shillings ($1.00) per year it would be enough for a general policy covering all farms. I do not think many hundreds [of pounds] are paid annually for burned crops. At present it costs about 10 pounds ($20.00) annually for two months insurance and that is only for fire. The I.A.B. have inspectors in each district, so the insurance should be easily arranged.
Can anyone say if the Midland Railway are reducing rail-rates the same as the Government lines, as some farmers may prefer to get their manures over that line.


September 21st 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Beautifully hot weather, a day that could make a thirst, and the Farmers Association of Mullewa and Tenindewa opened up at Tenindewa for their annual picnic. Fully a hundred people attended from far and wide, and all appeared to thoroughly enjoy themselves with the good things of the earth. There were horse races for the farmer who fancied his horse could gallop, and some interesting finishes were witnessed. Then there was the Married Ladies’ race, which was well worth going miles to see. The pace and finished style of these married athletes would take some beating. They did not exhibit any frill but settled down early in the race to get to the winning post quickly. One poor competitor tried to roll to the winning post, but as the double gees were about, this state was not considered as a means of progress. Then came the Single Ladies race. This was interesting and there was plenty of style in this event with a fair bit of dash of speed. The young men each had their favourite. Then came the kiddies. They were a good lot and enjoyed themselves immensely and the competitions were very keen. Plenty of fruit and sweets were distributed amongst the kiddies, and a tank of boiling water was available all day (it’s a thirsty place).
Messrs. Stokes and Fry and many others helped make the thing a success. I was forgetting there was a good dance at the local school which finished in the early hours of the morning.
Crops are only middling. We have had a month’s hot weather and last week was between 90 and 100 degrees daily (34 to 38 degrees Celsius) with inland winds. There has been plenty of appearances of rain, but it did not fall here. Some crops are burning up and their chances are hopeless. The late crops are suffering the most. A good many will have fair hay crops, but i think the weather is too dry to fill the wheat. A number of farmers will commence hay cutting in a few days. Shearing is just starting with most, and a few have cut out.

October 12th 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent) (from October the 5th)

Nice rains fell here yesterday, and with it we had some very heavy wind. The rain will do the late crops the world of good, although some are too far gone I think. The wind had blown a fair quantity down, but more could be saved by a reaper thresher. It is wonderful how the crops stood the long, dry, hot spell. There are some very nice looking crops around but how they will yield is hard to say and probably the grain will be a bit pinched. Most farmers have finished hay cutting, and a few have commenced to stack. The heavy rain will damage the hay crop a bit.
Tenindewa is holding a special affair on Saturday week in aid of a patriotic fund. I believe the committee of the lads sports have a current fund in hand for a similar purpose.
This district wants a “State Farm” but I think it is a question that can wait until the war is finished with, as funds should be conserved to the utmost.

Note; According to BOM records, almost 40 mm of rain fell between the 4th and 6th of October at Tenindewa in 1916.

December 14th 1916

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Taking off the wheat crops around these parts, in a good many cases is just about finished, and the others are making good headway. They all find in the yield the effects of a dry September, and probably the average will be about 10 bushels per acre [.7 of a tonne per hectare] for 1916. Now how will 10 bushels pay the bill:

Ploughing 8 shillings per acre
Drilling 2 shillings per acre
Seed 3 shillings and sixpence per acre
Manure 2 shillings and sixpence per acre
Harvesting 7 shillings per acre
Bags 2 shillings and 9 pence per acre (for a 10-bushel crop)
Carting 1 shillings and 6 pence per acre (for a 10-bushel crop) (3 miles to siding) ***********
1 pound 7 shillings and 3 pence=Total [direct costs]

1 pound 15 shillings = Gross Returns (10 bushels X 3 shillings and 6 pence per bushel)
2 shillings and 9 pence per acre= Nett returns
3 miles to siding gives a clue to where the author’s farm might have been *************


May 31st 1917

Mullewa News (From our own Correspondent)

Things generally in Mullewa have been very quiet lately, but we hope that now the seeding is almost complete and with the prospect of an early and good season that affairs will again brighten.
Very few head of stock have been coming in, but drover Clarkson has just arrived with about 2500, which are in good condition. It is expected that good consignments will be arriving, and that the sales will again be started.
Our only hotel has recently changed hands. Mr. Bowes, our old and respected townsman, has relinquished in favor of Mr. Pearsall, who comes with the reputation of being a live and popular boniface. We bid him welcome, although we shall miss our genial and familiar, Joe.
The patriotic bazaar has at last been drawn to a close, and the success attained reflects much credit on the committee and the residents who responded with great effort. Much credit is due to the assistant secretary, and the committee warmly commended him for his service. The nett result was 112 pounds [$224.00] which is to be equally divided between the Victoria District Patriotic Fund, and the Repatriation Fund. All the stalls run by the ladies, were exceedingly well managed, and they must feel extremely gratified at the success after their strenuous efforts. The Ugly Man competition was won by Mr. Bowers, Mr. McArthur being the second ugliest. Altogether 43 pounds [$86.00] was received in votes. From private information, I understood that the good folk of Tenindewa have from one gathering collected another 7 pounds [$14.00] It is pleasing to note that although times are hard and money scarce sacrifices are made to bring about such results as the foregoing.
A letter from the Base Records, England, to Mrs. F. W. Smith, of our town brought proud news last Thursday, i.e. the information that her son Frank had received the Military Cross for conspicuous gallantry in action. This young hero fought through Gallipoli till the evacuation, being once slightly wounded. He was then transferred to France, and promoted to second lieutenant. I understand that he has since received his captaincy. Mrs. Smith is to be congratulated on rearing such a noble son and indeed the congratulations need not cease just yet, as she has two other sons, one of whom has done his duty, and returned ill. The third is either in France or on his way there and with the example of a hero brother, will no doubt achieve a similar result. Young Frank, writing to his mother, deplores the cruelty of war. He has been two years and nine months on active service, and only had two weeks rest during the whole time, but nevertheless he sees his duty, and does it. I had the honors of seeing his photo, and he is indeed one of the fine specimens of manhood which will make the annuls of Australia ring for generations to come.

June 2nd 1917

Tenindewa Notes (1917)

Things farming have been very brisk this way, and there is a very large area under wheat again, and almost all have finished seeding operations. We have had a great number of frosts this month, with ice on the troughs outside and some farming people predicting a bad season. Since the frosts we have had light rains, and some of the crops are up and looking well. Mr. Fry’s crop is the most forward seen so far. It is Fairbank.
Stock are looking well, and lambing is going on. Horses are a bit on the warn side and are spelling after their hard toil. I wonder why farmers do not go in for some of the smaller kind of tractors, instead of using horses? Perhaps it is owing to their not being advertised. If the agents had any rush left they would give trials.
I.A.B. farmers are finding themselves in much difficulty in obtaining replies to important matters at present, as under the old regime, and the accounts for 1915, are not yet rendered to farmers complete, and although the I.A.B have received two sixpenny dividends from the Wheat Pool, for 1915, they have not even advised farmers, and what they have done with it goodness only knows. The outside creditor appears to receive very little consideration. Half a crown per bushel has been paid for 1916-17 crop, and none of this has been paid to outside creditors yet.
If the wheat scheme had been handed over to two or three outside trading firms, I am bold enough to say things would have been different. The I.A.B. is running the farmers further into debt, and interest upon interest charged. They have their officers running over the country day after day paying cheques to farmers, whereas these could be sent to them, or paid to their credits at Banks, in the majority of cases. If they visited the farms once in three months it would be enough in 90% of the cases, as the farmers are soon summed up. This all comes out of the farmers, and also the cost of an army of officials in Perth., half of whom should be in the firing line, because girls could not do worse than have done, and would probably do a lot better.
Some time ago a Royal Commission toured the country in style and examined numerous cockies to find out why farming did not pay, and to suggest better methods and improve legislation Has this been put in W.P.B. (The commission is still taking evidence –Ed.)
Local farmers are wondering when the bacon factory is to be started in Geraldton, as they have practically no market for pigs, and are going out of them as a consequence. By the press I notice the Minister for Industries talks nicely on the bacon curing and butter factories, but some would like him to do a bit and give the talking a rest. Works not words are wanted.

September 27th 1917

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The recent rains improved the late crops a good deal, and there is now a chance of fair yields. Septoria and red rust have appeared in some crops, but it is hoped they will not do too much damage. The rains during the last few days have delayed shearing and hay cutting.
Political matters are in the foreground, although there is not a very marked interest in them. All the would-be legislators have been here, but they have only gone over the same old ground. If someone would start the ball rolling with the State economy, such as cutting out the Upper House, reducing the Lower House to half its present members, sacking the Governor-General and such thing like things, the politician would be acceptable. Australia has a Governor General and he should be enough to fill the all-Australia bill. Mr. Maley appears to be the favourite in the running here, and Mr. Hosken has a following. I have not heard much about the others. The road to Bindu is in disgraceful condition and absolutely dangerous. I saw two horses standing on there heads this evening while crossing a creek. The Road Board is not worrying about it, although their attention has been repeatedly drawn to it. Someone will get hurt and then no doubt a claim will be made.
There is an epidemic of measles around here, but so far all cases are doing well.
I believe the Greenough Show is to the fore again. Good luck to them.
Mr. Stafford, after many trials has struck good stock water.

December 13th 1917

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

We are having splendid harvesting weather and all the farmers are busy collecting the golden grain. The yields are not very satisfactory owning to too much wet weather during the growing period and a dry finish. Still the bags are filling and there will be a lot of wheat from this district.
(Jan .5 Feb 1.0 Mar 80 April 8 May 34 June 124 July 100 Aug 68 Sept 61 Oct 22 Nov 0 Dec 13) Total 512
The Co-operative is going ahead and the building will be erected in a week or two on a nice piece hand site right alongside the railway Goods Shed. The land was kindly given by Mr. N Fry.
The Society has had a good start but lost a number of their customers owning to the delays of the railways in forwarding goods, some of which took a fortnight to come from Perth and then allowed to lay at Mullewa for days and [dashing the expectation of] people waiting for those goods. This unnecessary delay by the railways is losing the society customers and the railway department freight which I thought Commissioner Short wanted. If the railway department would look after the freight they have they would not have to increase fright rates so much. They want shaking up a bit. The postal authorities in their wisdom have cut Tenindewa out of the mail and now we can only send mail to Geraldton on Mondays and Wednesdays because they will have to pay more than sweating wages. The last post mistress received the large sum of eight pounds per annum ($16.00) and had to meet the mail five days a week and do the same thing to sent mail away. The letters posted numbered 500 per week besides papers etc. We will not receive a Geraldton paper now from Tuesday to Saturday. The settlers have petitioned the Federal Authorities.
The General Meeting of the Co-operative Society was held last Sunday to elect five directors. The following were elected: Messes Valentine, Woods, Stafford, Johnson and Curtis. Mr. N Fry was elected secretary.
However, there is satisfaction in knowing that growing wheat finds plenty of work and gives a healthy appetite. I think farmers with wheat only [in their enterprise] will want nursing a good while unless normal seasons return.
The Tenindewa Sports Club intend holding a full-blown race meeting on New Year’s Day, also other sports —to make a full day of it. They are having a booth (publican’s) also. I think this is a step in the wrong direction. Have a day of sport by all means, but such things as betting and beer spoil all sport, as they spoiled cycling and foot racing years ago.
Tenindewa is well situated for the lamb trade and pig raising and both of these stock do remarkably well here, and if the I.A.B. were to set farmers up in a small way, say a couple of breeding sows and 50 ewes, the farmers would soon make headway and free themselves of debt, but if the I.A.B. do not do this, then I am afraid they will have a big debt to place to the loss account. The thing wants tackling boldly. No half measures will be of any use. Another Sir John Forrest is badly wanted in W.A. He was game to the core. see the Coolgardie water scheme. Would any of our present legislators have tackled it? To tackle any problem boldly is more than half the battle. This is a scheme which should be supported strongly by all Geraldton businesspeople, to whom a number of farmers owe money. If sufficient push and go were put into this matter [and] I believe it could be arranged, and as things are not too good on the Murchison the necessary stock may be obtained at reasonable rates. They {the local farmers] should breed for the fat lamb trade and bacon curing and in conjunction with this scheme there should be the necessary cool storage and bacon factory in Geraldton. Will those in authority wake up or are they going to leave everything until the war is over. If they do there may be no need of assisting the farmer, then; he [the farmer] will probably be out. [Prophetic words from Leo and many others as it turned out]
A settler received 400 breeding ewes from Yowergabbie [Station] a few days since, and paid 15 pounds 4 shillings, and the Railway Department did not supply even a sheep race to unload them, hence the settler had to lift 200 ewes from the top deck of the of the [rail] truck to the ground, and as there had been a shower [of rain] while the sheep were in the truck you can imagine what a nice job it was. On another occasion the same settler received sheep from Pindar, and the door of one truck was left open and not noticed until it arrived at Mullewa, with the result 471 sheep arrived instead of 500. I do not know how it is, but there some meddling in dealing with it. [The Railways]
perhaps they have that weary tired feeling, and their customers pay large cheques for the neglect?

July 30th 1918

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

We are having nice weather around here, and the farmers are all smiling. They are people of moods, but they are so used to getting little that they smile good and often at the good gift of a nice season. All the crops are looking well, but the feed is backward.
A fairly large number of farmers intend attending the cold storage meeting on August 9th. They recognize that cool storage and canning works at Geraldton will very soon get them their motor car, whereas growing wheat only, under present conditions is enough to them a wooden suit.
The farmers are beginning to co-operate, and on Saturday night opened their co-operative store with a general rally of all the settlers. Some songs and dancing, card games and such like kept them all busy until the small hours of Sunday morning. It was a really enjoyable time, and the building which is 20 feet [6 metres] by 30 foot [9 metres] was well filled. The main interest of the gathering was to raise funds for the Red Cross to help our boys in France. We had a popular girl competition as the main attraction, and two of our farmers pretty daughters entered for this. Miss N Fry and Miss K Palmer, and the supporters of both were very busy, and at the finish Miss Fry won by a small majority. This part of the programme realized about 22 pounds [$44.00]
Both girls worked very hard and deserve the greatest credit. They are both very popular. Then came the ugly man’s competition, for which Messes. J Ring and N. Fry entered. Mr. Ring won by a fir margin, and he really deserved the title and one on good merit. They both worked hard for victory. It was good fun all through and there was not the least friction. The total result will be almost 40 pounds [$80.00], a fair amount which was raised by the lady in charge of the refreshment stall (a very important part of the show) Mrs. G. Valentine, of Pine Grove.
Mr. Alex Rumble, the hon secretary, deserves great credit for the hard work he put into the show, things generally running as smoothly as a well oiled engine when the engine wishes to run well. All concerned deserve great credit, and it is hoped the store will be used again.
The Road Board are insisting on farmers replacing wire gates across roads by iron or wooden gates 14 feet [3 metres] wide, and have given farmers very short notice to do so under, the threat of removing [the old], at the farmers expense. This Board seems to do things without first considering the cost. A gate like they require costs two pound 10 shillings at the lowest [$5.00] and I think they could easily been left in abeyance until after the war.

Below is the Coop building referred to
When this photo was taken it was part of Peets Transport business in Mullewa acting as the mail room.
Previous to that it was the “Old Hall” and located east of the Store. In that location it also acted as the Post Office and Exchange for a time. But originally, at the time of its building and at the time of the above article it was in Fry’s paddock south of the siding and just south of the Geraldton-Mullewa highway.

Unfortunately the Co-op folded very shortly afterwards (See article June 1922)

April 15th 1919

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Things are dry, decidedly dry, no rain having fallen since last November. Nearly all the farmers are spending most of their time carting water Very few have started ploughing so far, and as there is little fallow there will be a decreased area of crop for the coming season, or a very late seeding. It is a wonder the Public Water Supply do not put a large dam at Wolya water catchment. There is plenty of room for a 5000 yard (5000 cu. meter) tank and they only have a 1400 yard one. [tank means dam in this context]
A number of settlers are boring in hope of striking water; others had to get rid of their sheep, or greatly reduce their numbers. Feed is becoming scarce and most of the scrub around here has been burnt up with bush fires. This has been the hottest season for the last 10 years and their have been more bush fires.
The IAB [Industries Assistance Board] is refusing to assist settlers who will not give a lien over their sheep and wool. This is unfair’ as from the sheep and wool the farmers are paying off old debts as the Board [IAB] never pay any. The IAB have had four years wheat and in the bulk of cases in this district have not paid a penny to creditors. I think it is time the whole IAB was wiped out, and the farmers put through the bankruptcy court if nothing better can be done. Land rents are too much, and a fair number of applications round here for repricing have been sent in, but the Lands Department will not put a fair value on the land. They will not be guided by their repricing officer, so what is the use of paying to be repriced. I know a case where the officer reported poor sandplain to be reduced from 7 shillings to two shillings and sixpence but the Lands Department only brought it down to 5 shillings and ninepence.
Easter Monday will see a good day’s sport here including horse racing, foot racing and a good mixed programme for ladies and gents.
Mr. N. Fry of Kaburnie has been laid up for the last fortnight with an injury to his knee. However he is improving.
The Railway Department should erect a stock loading yard here as there are 18 settlers with sheep and other stock. At present they have to drove to Mullewa or load at the siding under great difficulties. Recently I saw two bogies of sheep loaded without even a portable race and the sender had to lift 160 fat wethers to the top deck from the ground. Members of Parliament might make note of these yards and also increasing the size of the Wolya dam.


May 1st 1919

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)

Splendid rains have fallen, and the earth is already covering itself with green mantle, and the farmers are forgetting the long hot dry summer, the monotonous water carting, and the delays to their work. They are full of hope for better times. Ploughing and seeding are in full swing.
The sports on Easter Monday went off well and a most enjoyable day was spent. Nearly everyone won a prize, so all were satisfied.
I.A.B. farmers are disappointed at Premier Colebatch appointing Minister Robertson again the handle the Industries Department. He charges farmers 7% and has let the Freemantle Freezers have money at 5%. Where is the fair play? In this district he squeezing the deserving farmers off the board, hence he is lessening the wheat area. He has cut his District Inspector’s clerk out of Geraldton, hence the District Director has to stay in Geraldton to do the clerk’s work instead of going round amongst farmers monthly. The I.A.B. farmers have to either go for their money or write. [for their money]
I notice in the “Guardian” an article by Captain White extolling the virtues of the old black crow. This I have been convinced off for a long while. They do a lot of good eating up old dead sheep, which die in the scrub and not far from them would be thousands of blowflies. They kill a few lambs, but it is mostly the week ones. Again; I have been protecting the magpies and butcher bird for years in my farm. They eat millions of grasshoppers and grubs. and thus save these plagues from eating the crops out, but there are so many good birds for the farmers and graziers that it would take a long letter to deal with them. These two latter {mentioned] birds also eat carrion and maggots. Then in the dry years the various parrots clean up our fields of the doublegee. They certainly eat some grain but I think they deserve protecting for the good they do.
Have you ever, Mr. Editor camped in the bush near a pool in early spring and listened to the music of the magpie and the butcher bird. If not, it is a treat you had better come up and enjoy this spring, for this next few months life in the bush , where birds are protected, is a pleasure. There are so many things to interest and [to]study.

When Leo Critch refers to Mr. Editor (as above) he is actually is referring to his father, Francis Henry Critch.
Also it is worth understanding that Leo was married August 1918 so he may have been inviting “Mr. Editor” [sic] with the expectation of more inviting arrangements in the 1918 spring rather than that of his bachelor years at Tenindewa


December 5th 1919

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Whether the angles in the havens were celebrating on Saturday the anniversary of the declaration of the Armistice–some time after the event–or weather war had been declared by one of the twinkling planets or not I cannot say. But such a bombardment or barrage of thunder and electricity has seldom been witnessed in this Bindu district and it will be remembered here by the cocky here for many a day as there crops were being targets for hail stones as big as egg bombs. Two returned soldiers named Bedford and Cox with farmer Mr. T Curtis had a narrow squeak of being killed. They had just left a large York Gum tree under which they were getting shelter when it was struck by lightening and ripped from the top to the bottom. Postle or Donaldson would have not have had the chance of ever catching one of the two within a 5 miles distance.
Emus are still doing a terrible lot of damage to crops. The cocky has a lot to put up with, Mr. Editor. Haven’t they? What with no rain, bad yields, kangaroos, emus, weevils and no ships farming its no beer and skittles. Is it?
There has been agitation for a daily mail service for Tenindewa, and as the monthly subsidy of 2 pounds 7 shillings and 6 pence (almost $5.00) provided by the Government doesn’t buy quite enough chewing gum for the Post Mistress I suppose it will mean the settlers diving into their trousers pockets to make up the deficiency.
The weather here lately has been very changeable and bad for harvesting. Result…more cursing!!!
I believe there is going to be a great Christmas tree for the kiddies at Tenindewa as the collecting is going good

January 22nd 1920

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Very hot weather is the order of things around here, but still water and feed are plentiful and stock are good. There are a few nice haystacks around the farms. Most farms are finished stripping but the results, generally speaking are poor owing to the recent storm. In fact, there are heavy losers through it. Messes Jim Valentine and W.H. Stokes lost nearly all their crops, and others lost a fair proportion, as the hail wind and rain were very heavy.
Mr. Stafford lost a splendid draft horse a few days ago. He was tied up, but accidently got down and broke his neck.
The Bindu Road, which is the motor track to Geraldton, is in a very rough and bad state, and the Road Board do not attempt to make it better. Messes valentine and Duncan’s road is also in a disgraceful and dangerous condition.
Owning to ever rising charges for commodities, I am afraid most farmers will have to go into towns, as 5 shillings per bushel for wheat is no good under the present conditions. Framers were better off when wheat was selling at 3 shillings and two pence [per bushel] (5 shillings per bushel equates to $1.50 per bag or $18.00 per tonne)
The timber for our railway stock yards has arrived and we hope to see them erected very soon, as there are a number of stock to be trucked during the next few months.
People are wondering as to what is the method of disposing of timber etc belonging to the wheat pool. In these days of short supplies, this should command a good price.

March 5th 1920

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Why have I been so silent with my notes, did you say? Well tell the truth Mr. Editor I am fair dinkum disgusted. You know what a nuisance I have been to you and your staff by, month after month per medium of the “Express” agitating and barracking for the corporative people here to start a store.  Why bless your soul sir, that now is a complete washout, a mere speck on the fly paper to what Tenindewa was on the verge of doing to keep up her reputation from slipping backwards. The best asset we have and what took years to get, namely the post office and public telephone, was on Saturday week last to be bundled down, box and dice to Geraldton, for the simple reason the current Postmaster could not see his way clear to pay for the young ladies services, keep, and need for a horse to convey them the six miles, on ten shillings a week, which is the government subsidy, and though the ladies, in order to keep down expenses were going without butter and sugar and living on watercress sandwiches and the horse was getting only sticks across his skinny ribs, it happens it was all to no purpose. It was said “it couldn’t be did any longer” the strain was too great and the frames too frail to carry on.
Happening on the Saturday mentioned in the “City of Tenindewa”, with about twenty or more residents and espying the postmaster in the act of blowing up, I mean pulling down the post office [at which time] we asked him to stay proceedings for an hour when we hurriedly held a meeting.
After a lengthy discussion we decided to put our hands in our pockets and make up a living salary to enable the postmaster to carry on for a month. In the meantime the secretary of the Farmers and Settlers Association was to put the case before the postal authorities, and to try and secure a larger grant. Personally, I think the Government should increase the subsidy, as years back mailmen were paid fair wages to deliver mail to about a dozen settlers.
Surely now that we have about twenty times that number, and the post office a good paying proposition to the Government, it is not fair the “cockies” to be dobbing up when the business of the post office warrants it. A good suggestion was made at the meeting that the Returned Servicemen Association be approached to find out if any disabled returned soldier, not afraid of being starved, would be game enough to take on the duties. Whether anything further has been done in this matter I don’t know.
Mr. Editor after your interview with the Prince of Wales you might consign him up here for a number of blue blooded relations of his, of whom he is not aware, would, I am sure astonish him and as one lady, who has enough blue blood in her to fill an ink bottle, told me she can trace her male ancestors back to when Noah handed one [of her ancestors] a life belt to work out his destiny against the flood, she, to my mind had the blues all right.
You can tell the Prince he needn’t think about tucker. Everyone is prepared to feed him, but should he like to vary it, instead of a valet, he might bring a kangaroo dog and a few rabbit traps and not be troubled about polishing up his pennies as we play ‘two up’ with I.A.B money. (Industries Assistance Board)
We got beaten at cricket on Sunday by Mullewa, but, all the same put a straight out ticket on us for the shield, it’s ours. Devils Creek went down and belted Mingenew cricketers right into the scrub
Oh I nearly forgot to mention that the boxing stunt, which was to be a blood curdling affair, a bare knuckle go a la Tom Sawyers, didn’t come off, as only one of the gladiators turned up at the meeting place. The other is still alive and no blood was spilt though the way the bruiser who put in an appearance shadow-spared his way back home, we all thought there might be some of ours [blood] at stake, so, gave him the whole road to himself.

June 15th 1920

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Nice rains have fallen around this part of the district, and everything in the garden is looking lovely. The order of the day with the farmer is large areas of wheat, in anticipation of a big price next year.
The grass is making good growth and stock are looking well, and there should be some good wool clips around here at the end of this year, as sheep have had a good season. I notice lambs are fairly plentiful in the paddocks also and look well. This is a fine stock raising district when better methods are used.
The new railway stockyards are finished and are proving a great convenience to the settlers, but better arrangements for dispatching and lifting stock are required.
The school holidays have just finished, and the lads and lassies are back at their books.
It is rumored that Mr. N. Fry, who left to settle in Victoria, will shortly return and settle again in this district. Surely the place has charm! They all come back

August 10th 1920

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Last Sunday the Tenindewa footballers met the Devils Creek team and got a severe drubbing on their own ground. This is not as it should be. These two teams are now level pegging for the premiership. So Tenindewa have to meet Mullewa next. If they win, which they should do if a full team gets together, they will be premiers.
If rumour is correct wedding bells will soon be ringing for a Tenindewa couple; its nice to see young couples settling down.
Last week Tenindewa experienced four of the heaviest frosts for many years. Everything put on a white coat and ice was plentiful. Some of the crops around here were touched with it, and a good number of potato patches as well.
We have had some lovely rains, and if the season continues showery there should be some of the best crops ever harvested in this part. Most farmers go in for a fair percentage of fallow hence crops are fairly sure.
Some remarkably fine crops are showing in this district. Feed is plentiful, and all stock are looking well. There should be a good wool clip. Lambing is about finished and the youngsters look very nice playing around in the paddocks. The flower season is here, and it is quite a pleasure to be outdoors.


The Young Idea
Upon scholars at a Bath secondary school being ordered to write an essay on school work, one bright youngster worked off the following in his papers; “home lessons are hastening my life towards the tomb”

September 21st 1920

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The most popular news this time is people are marrying. Our esteemed farmer Mr. R (Bob) Oldham, was married on Tuesday last, at Christ Church, Geraldton, to Miss Gwen Palmer. Many Tenindewa residents visited Geraldton to witness the happy event, and their many good friends wish them every good fortune.


Tenindewa footballers got a licking for the premiership. I think they must have dropped their tail a bit, as Devils Creek won by a good margin, after a fairly robust game.
Crops are looking remarkably good and I tip a bumper harvest if we do not get rust, septoria, smut or a storm. Of course the farmer is never sure of his crop until it is in the bag, and tightly sown up. Things could not look brighter for the farmers than they do.
Messrs. Stafford and Oldham are preparing for the freezing works. They have raised some very fine crossbred lambs this season. It is to be hoped the works will go ahead, as they have been hanging far too long.
On local farmer has tried Wimmera rye grass in his paddocks, and it is doing well. The grass is giving great results in lamb raising in Victoria.
Many residents intend seeing the Geraldton Agricultural Show this year. It is a good decision to have a few days holiday and rest. There is plenty of work in this district, but men are hard to get, Good prices are being offered for clearing.
Farmers are commencing their shearing, and should get splendid clips, as the season has been good all through.

November 17th 1920

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)

Harvesting here, as elsewhere, is in full swing, and as I have previously mentioned, the gathering will be bountiful. In some cases the reaper has been introduced to this district, in preference to the harvester, which goes to show we are progressing fast. If the Mitchell Government would only encourage, instead of forbidding, the destruction of the emu, the Hon. Thomas Moore might not have it all his own way next election in this cocky centre.
The knock back of the sale of wool put a damper on the bright outlook there was for high prices earlier in the season. I hear that Messrs. Petroff and Butler Bros. were the only two around this district to fluke top market before it fell like a pricked balloon.
Nine bob a bushel for home consumption wheat ($4.00 per tonne), certainly cannot be sneezed at, but the two and sixpence cash (25 cents) first installment on the pooled wheat is, to my mind, “up to mud”. For my contention is this — by the time the finalizing amount is paid, with the perpetual advancement in the cost of living, this pouny note then will only produce 10 shillings ($1.00) value. For instance: yesterday a farmer received 50 pounds ($100.00) from his 1916 crop of wheat. Ask yourself what the 50 pounds was then worth against its worth today?

Believe the residents of Eradu, on seeing the old pub pulled down and trucked away, are petitioning to the Railway Department for a refreshment station at Eradu– a much needed requirement, and, if they include a trough, so as those poor thirsty horses that are continually dragging their farmers along miles of sandy roads to meet trains, could in conjunction quench their thirsts, Eradu would be worth settling around.
Some talk at Tenindewa of having the townsite shifted, or of reversing position with the cemetery. I could not say whether the same engineer who laid out the “town” of Mullewa had anything to do with our “city”. However, it seems peculiar that our cemetery should be adjacent to the railway line, while the townsite is on the backside of a stony ridge, approached during the winter months through a quog marsh per floating log or per medium of life belt only. [I] Once was told, where commenting on this townsite, that the plans were taken off upside down, and I am wondering if the engineer who drew he plans of Tenindewa wasn’t something similar–upside down himself.
Everyone is waiting for the shareholders annual meeting of the Cooperative Society. I think Mr. Editor, if I remember rightly, you have heard of this society before and as everyone is going to say something at the meeting you may again hear something. [in a later edition]

January 19th 1921

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)
Note; There is a slight variation here re. the author as against the normal i.e. From our own Correspondent? Whether its a typographical error or a different author is hard to tell? The words and style in the article seem to suggest the latter.

As the engine drivers forgot to provide a letter carrier for this district before they went Bolshevik I could not find a way to post my notes.
Pooling wheat is just on the verge of finishing here, and from what I can gather, though nothing sensational, the average yield has been very fair. Locally the member for Mt. Magnet (Mr. M. F. Troy’s) crops would compare with any in WA. From 60 acres of Nabawah he stripped 528 bags, approximately 9 bags to the acre. (1.85 tonne/hectare) and from 300 acres (120 hectares) in crop he harvested 1,921 bags (160 tonne) a little over 6 bags to the acre (1.2 tonne/hectare).

Note; The WA Department of Agriculture added two 1920 varieties, Federation and Nabawa(h), to their 2022 Variety Trials at Tenindewa as a curiosity

As I said before, nothing sensational but will always do me and to my mind reflects great credit on Mr. Dan Clifford, Mr. Troy’s able manager.
The wild dogs have been playing havoc with the sheep around here; not dingoes but mongrel kangaroo dogs gone wild. Messes Wood, Duncan, Stafford and Troy lost a lot of sheep through these pests. The killing and mangling of sheep became so great at Mr. Troy’s that he had to engage a special man to trap the dogs. Unfortunately for the old dogger, who has been dingoing around these districts for years and safeguarding many a farmers sheep, it is going to prove a costly hunt for him, for after having driven some 20 miles (32 Kilometers) to come to the assistance of Mr. Troy, his horse bolted into a 3000 yard dam, and after smashing the sulky to pieces, committed suicide by drowning itself before assistance was forthcoming. As this is a serious loss for the old man, and his only means of conveyance across country on the scent of the dingo, surely the farmers will see the old chap is not a loser. I should say Mr. Troy is offering him 5 pounds ($10.00) a piece for the scalps of the two ravaging dogs at large. Hope he is successful at catching them.
The Christmas Tree for the children was a great success, and great praise and credit were deservedly given Miss Paton, the young school mistress, for her efforts in connection with same.
The New Years sports were held in Mr. W. H. Stokes paddock and proved, as anticipated, a great success. As the dance following at night was well patronized a fair sum is on hand for the building of an Agricultural Hall, and as subscriptions have been freely promised, a start no doubt will be shortly made.
I notice my “opponent” the “Guardian” correspondent in “his” notes recently said Tenindewa must rally to the poll on election day and vote solidly for Mr. Maley, one of the “Cunning Party”. Is this not audacity, for Tenindewa is a straight-out Labour constituency, as shown by last election. Inasmuch as the electors, unlike the politicians, don’t box the compass, you can rest assured Mr. P. Moy will have a majority here.
A further proof of urgent need of a store here was the late strike. Picture farmers miles back having to, either drive to Mullewa or to Geraldton for provisions when a store could have supplied them.

With Premier “Mitch” things will shortly hum;
In a few months time Election Stakes are run.
Our three good men, Willock, Hickey, Moore,
Will show you what they’re battling for,
And when Paddy Moy wins the election fight,
There’ll be a hot time in Geraldton that night.

Jan. 17

February 11th 1921

Mullewa Cricket

Tenindewa V Mullewa

The fixture for Sunday last was between Tenindewa and Mullewa and was played at Mullewa in the presence of a great number of spectators.
Mullewa fielded and dismissed their opponents for the small total of 28. Haley secured 6 for 16 and McGowan 4 for 12 these being the only two bowlers tried.
Mullewa made 95 in their innings, Bill Pettit being the top scorer with 20 and played good cricket. M’Keegan a young player who had to face Bob Oldham gave a good display in making 16 not out. The lad will considerably improve the Mullewa team. J Toomey also batted well for 12. These were the only players to reach double figures. Mullewa have lost the services of one of their best players in Bert Bowlett, he having the misfortune to meet with an injury to his arm, which will put him out of action for the season. The fielding for Mullewa was very keen [with] not a catch being missed and no byes being recorded [which] is a credit to Pettit our wicketkeeper as he had to stop Mac’s fast ones. He was on Kola and says that accounts for his good display.
Bob Oldham [was] right out of form yesterday, but only being recently married we were not expecting too much from him, but he will be up with the best of them before the season is over. I noticed captain Young and a good many of his followers from the Creek at the match, picking out the week points so that they will be right on the spot next time they meet either team.
The following are the scores
Tenindewa
Rumble c and b McGowan 6
Cooper b Hayley 3
Gee c Branson b McGowan 1
Broilrick c McGowan b Haley 1
Butler c Keegan b Haley 1
Napier b Haley 0
Stokes b McGowan 8
Beard b Haley 6
Warren c Toomey b Haley 1
Spencer not out 0
Sundries 2
Total 28
Bowling –Hayley 6 for 16 McGowan 4 for 12

Mullewa
Bicinson b Rumble 7
Price run out 5
Pettit c Warren b Gee 20
Beaumont b Rumble 4
McGowan c Price b Rumble 4
Haley l.b.w. b Oldham 9
Toomey c Stokes b Gee 12
Podger b Rumble 6
Keegan l.b.w. 16
Hayear c Gee b Rumble 0
Pech c Gee b Rumble 1
Sundries 11
Total 95
Bowling–Rumble 6 for 26. Gee 2 for 14, Oldham 1 for 22, Warren 0 for 10

January 10th 1922

Tenindewa notes (From our own Correspondent)

Thank goodness the dry year of 1922 has gone, and now Mr. Clement Wragge * is dead, he has taken all his forecasts for further drought with him, so we can start this year, even if we do have a dry spell, without anyone saying “Another drought…Wragge says so“.
(For the readers information; Tenindewa had 200mm of rain for the year in 1922 and a 150mm for the growing season ie May to September incl.)

The best Christmas Tree ever held was this year and organized and carried through by Mrs. Joe Stafford. It was held at the proper time i.e. Christmas Eve with the children’s presents being well selected and of equal value, thus giving no cause whatsoever for dissatisfaction or complaint. As Mrs. Stafford took particular care that no adult partook of any refreshments provided for the children, the kiddies thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

The Voluntary Wheat Pool, no responsibility, has not been a means of putting too many plums in Mr. Joe O’Brien’s Christmas-duff. [A flour pudding] As Joe is the receiver of wheat for the “pool” at Tenindewa, he is now tired of saying grace ie “for what I am about to receive etc.” and so is turning it up [ie ceasing operations]. When speaking to him re. the loading of wheat, he remarked that “Jack Major wore out the hind part of three pair of trousers waiting for wheat to come in last year, and I have worn out my boots running around the farms where there is [might be] any wheat to load.”

It is an ill wind that blows anybody any good. The drought that we have just experienced (and which is still on) has made most farmers pick up a boring plant and prospect for water, with the result that many have been successful. Messrs. Oldham, Stokes, Rumble and Stafford all have struck good stock water, the first named farmer watering 500 sheep beside his working horses, from a well on his sandplain country. For those poor unfortunate individuals who have tried and failed, it is extremely hard to pull water 80ft (25 meters), after waiting their turn from the only source in Tenindewa, were there is a mill over which if repaired would save time and money to many in the district. I hope our member (of parliament) will read this, for it is an urgent necessity.

Sorry to learn from Mr. Cid Eves, that his brother Ernie Eves of Walkaway has just returned from Perth after undergoing an urgent operation, necessitating the attendance of three prominent physicians. Though very weak I am glad to say he is well on the mend.
Ernie Eves it was who carted all or most of, that high grade ore for Mr. Dorrie Doolette * of Bullfinch fame.

Mr. Dan Clifford, late manager for M.F. Troy MLA * died last week. A hard and game old toiler was Dan.

I nearly turned up my toes myself the other day, fair dinkum, only for being hard in the brainbox, I believe I would have gone. Three days before Christmas I was carting from Troy’s dam, when going downhill the shafts of the cart snapped off, throwing me out and the tank of water on top of me. Further than pulverizing my hat, bruising and swelling to four time its ordinary size, dislocating 5 ribs and putting me in bed for two weeks, I am not much the worse off.

*Google “Dorrie Doolette” for the story in itself
* Clement Wragge was the first weather forecaster in Australia. He was disrespectfully know as “Inclement Wragge”. He died in Auckland on the 10th of December 1923.

*M. F. Troy is featured on this website under “People”.

June 29th 1922

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The Tenindewa Cooperative Store is being would up–not enough cockies to keep it going. The building used by the Co-op has been sold to the Sports Club, who intend removing it to a townsite from Mr. Petroff’s place [over the road]. The building is a fair size and gives young people a good place to amuse themselves at dancing and other games……mostly other games (See entry June 1926 below)
Farmers have finished seeding, or nearly so. The season so far has been a bad one, the ground being too hard at the start from want of rain. Most crops are up but there has been little growth and far too many frosts. Feed is scarce although stock look fairly well, especially cattle that can reach the good top feed.
The Bindu settlers are badly in need of a school. There are a number of children growing up around there and without even the least education. Surely the Government could close a few schools around Perth and place a few more in the way back places. Farmers have enough troubles and hardships without making a rod for their children’s backs through no education. The backbone of the country is having a poor time.
Emus and kangaroos are very numerous and are already on the crops doing damage. There is far too much shelter for such vermin owing to large belts of scrubland, sandplain mostly.
The I.A.B. has cut farmers down to 5 bob (slang for 50 cents) a day now, still we do not hear any Labour members crying out for a living wage for the backbone. But anything is good enough for cocky, he is fair game all round.
Wedding bells will shortly be ringing in our part. I know of two couples about to take the game on. Good luck to them I say.
Motor cars seem to be cutting the Railways out of a lot of fares now a days. Over 20 cars passed here last month. People appear to be tiring of high fares and poor service. It is mooted around here that a settler is taking his team to Geraldton every second month to bring stores for the district. At present the Railway is giving very poor service and goods are being over-carried or not sent on thus causing great loss and inconvenience.

August 5th 1922

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Wedding bells have rung out once more, and the first wedding was celebrated at Tenindewa today, Miss Jean Eves being united to Mr. M. J. Kember, both of Tenindewa. The bride and her maids were beautifully attired and looking lovely, the bridegroom suitably attired looking all over a man. The Tenindewa hall, where the ceremony took place, was decorated very nicely and a large white bell was overhanging the bride. A number of ladies arranged decorations and the Misses Staffords were prominent in the work. The whole countryside turned out to see the happy couple united–old men, young men, old ladies, young ones, and all the kiddies. The hall was crowded, over 100 being present. The bride was the recipient of many valuable presents, and the residents handed her over a nice cheque also. The happy couple left by today’s (Tuesday’s) train on their honeymoon, and all hands wished them every happiness. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. Mr. Freeman, Methodist Minister

September 8th 1922

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)

Not being a printer, therefore not on strike, I must apologize for being so long winded with my notes to the “Express” but having a budget of news this time I hope it will make amends for my absent mindedness.
The much-looked for wedding was duly celebrated here, it being the first occasion of such an event in Tenindewa. Mr. and Mrs. Kember were presented with a Bible by the adherents of the Methodist Church. All Tenindewa turned up to witness the ceremony, and as nearly everyone brought a wedding present, you can judge the gifts were numerous, amongst them being 15 cheques — a nice kickoff for the young couple.
Journeyed out to the sale at Menang last week. Met many old friends there, strolling about. I noticed that the Hon. Tom Moore, MLC, like a good Aussie officer, was one of the boys with all. Our old friend Mr. H. Pass, looking as gay as ever, was listening with interest to Mr. Frank McGuinness’ deputation to the Hon. T. Moore in to why Ardingly siding should be shifted further long to meet the requirements of the Devil’s Creek settlers, pricking his ears smartly when Mr. McGuinness mentioned he would be willing to give 50 pounds [$100.00] towards the cost of so doing.
Concerning the clearing up sale of Menang homestead , I never, in my life, saw such a lot of ramshackle stuff–nothing in first class order, even the horses being of the Shetland pony variety, with draught horse legs, and i am game enough to say had there been no beer there and any other auctioneer than Mr. Tuck of the Graziers Co-operative, old Hoopla, of Geraldton would have had the lot for anything from two bob upwards. The station itself is one of the best propositions ever bought for closer settlement, the land is beautiful, and will grow anything, with natural feed abundant for stock. The Government made no South-West bloomer there, and as Mr. Frank McGuinness has just put his place, adjoining Menang, and equally as good, on the Repatriation, Diggers who were looking for land should take my advice –hop in lively and grab your whack of this 6000 acres of the very best.
I was guest of Mr. Mc Guinness for a couple days, and he drove me around the Devil’s Creek district, pointing out such farms the Meadowcroft Bros, O’Brien and sons, Keeffe and sons and others who have made this homes in this salmon gum country. Perceiving a new jarrah house, I asked the ownership of same, and was told it belonged to Mr. Frank Keeffe who was recently married.
On Sunday I witnessed a football match, Tenindewa verses Devil’s Creek, with Mr. Charlie Meadowcroft in command of the whistle, and let me here say that Charlie knows when to blow it, and perhaps would not mind teaching your Geraldton umpires how and when to do it. Tenindewa won, but honest “injun” though I barracked for them, if it had not been for the play of Bob Stafford (late of Railways Geraldton) and Charlie Keeffe (from Devils Creek), Tenindewa would have been second. Anyhow, it was a good game, and on the day the best team one.
On Sunday last, by defeating Mullewa by three goals 11 behinds, to 2 goals 8 behinds, Devils Creek won the premiership. Gee, Curruthers, Woodhouse, Jim Keating, Jack Keeffe, and Whitehurst played great games for the winners while Watson, Thomson, Bowtell, Toomey and Slavin were the pick of Mullewa.
Do some Geraldton people good to have a trip up this country when any sports are held, and I am sure they would return acknowledging our ladyfolk are the best going, for Mr. Editor they are all out to make all enjoy themselves and work like bees never missing anyone requiring tea, cake or sandwiches.
In conclusion, I herewith open fire on the statements made by the Minister for Agriculture and Mr. Sutton earlier in the season, that the wheat prospects pointed to a record season, and the yield would be 15 million bushels. A new hat to the Minister if the yield is not nearer five million, but he must leave one at the “Express” for me if it is. I cannot fathom, especially in this district, what he bases his prospects on. To start the season, we had no rain for a month; then it followed by by severe frosts and ice for another month; then scorching hot days without rain, for a further month. Up to date we have had 4 1/2 inches [112 mm]. In 1911, the worst season on record, we had 5 inchs [125mm] at this time. Not a foot [300 mm] of extra water in any dam for 500 miles [860 kilometre]. What bonzer prospects –for a drought. Jump about, Mr. Maley and have a look around before you make statements again to gull the public. Show us the photos of a few six foot [2 metres] crops this season in the Victoria District, and I will post you a hat.

Mullewa rainfall 1922; May 21 mm; June 23 mm; July 18 mm; August 26 mm; September 13 mm; Total 178

January 1923

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Thank goodness that dry year of 1922 has gone, and now that Mr. Clement Wragge is dead, he has taken all his forecasts for further droughts with him, so we can start this year , even if we do have a dry spell, without anyone saying “Another drought —Wragge says so”
The best Christmas Tree ever held here was this year organized and carried through by Mrs. Joe Stafford. It was held at the proper time –Christmas Eve–the children’s presents being well selected and of equal value, thus giving no cause whatever for dissatisfaction or complaint. As Mrs. Stafford took particular care that no adult partook of any refreshments provided for children, the kiddies thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
The Voluntary Wheat Pool, no responsibility, has not been a means of putting too many plums in Mr. Joe O’Brien’s Christmas duff [a flour pudding]. As Joe is the receiver of wheat for the “Pool” at Tenindewa, he is now tired of saying grace “for what I am about to receive etc.” and so is turning it up. [stopping]. When speaking to him re. the loading of wheat, he remarked the “Jack Major wore out the hind part of three pairs of trousers waiting for the wheat to come in last year, and I have worn my boots out running around the farms to see where there is any wheat to load”.
It is an ill wind that blows anybody any good. The drought that we have just experienced (and which is still on) has made most of the farmers pick up a boring plant and prospect for water, with the result that many have been successful. Messrs. Oldham, Stokes, Rumble and Stafford all have struck good water, the first named farmer watering 500 sheep beside [as well as] his working horses, from a well newly found on his sandplain country. For those unfortunate individuals who have tried and failed, it is extremely hard to have to pull water 80 feet [25 metres], after waiting their turn from the only source in Tenindewa, where there is a windmill over [collapsed] which if repaired, would save time and labour and money to many in the district. I hope our member [of parliament] will read this, for it is an urgent necessity.
Sorry to learn from Mr. Cid Eves, that his brother Mr. Ernie Eves of Walkaway has just returned from Perth, after undergoing a very serious operation, necessitating the attendance of three Perth physicians. Though very weak I am glad to say he is well on the mend. Ernie Eves it was, who carted all, or most, of that high grade ore for Mr. Dorrie Doolette of Bullfinch fame.
Mr. Dan Clifford, late of manager for Mr, M.F.Troy, MLA, died last week. Hard and game old toiler was Dan.
I nearly turned my toes up myself the other day, fair dinkum, only for being so hard in the brain box [thick skulled] I believe I would have gone. Three days before Christmas, I was carting from Mr. Troy’s dam, when going downhill the shafts of the cart snapped off, throwing me out [of the buggy] and the tank of water on top of me. Further than pulverizing my hat, bruising and swelling my head to four times its ordinary size, dislocating 5 ribs and then putting me in bed for two days, I am not much worse off.

Note; Leo’s homestead was about 5 klm east of Troy’s dam. The said “hill” is about half way, just west of the Kockatea Creek .

March 29th 1923

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Farming around here is one huge picnic, and the farmers are the gutsiest lot you could see; always smiling never cursing. They have very little work to do at this time of the year; they just cart water and then sit down and enjoy watching the stock drink up in an hour what it took all day to get. Water carting is not hard labour, because they have a nice one-handled windlass at each well and one well is only 60 feet deep. Mr. Denne Morgan’s well is 200 feet deep. The farmers do not believe in windmills on wells; they might be tempted to cart water when their dams are full. Windmills are only for townspeople who have to work six or seven hours a day. There is a windmill on one well but the farmers won’t use it. Drawing water by a windlass keeps their muscles fit.
We had an Ugly Men’s Competition here a week or so ago and although there was nothing to chose between the looks of the competitors, one had to win, so it fell to Bob Faull’s lot, and now the other side are displeased. What a pity everyone could not be a winner. It would save such a lot of bad feeling. The funds from the competition will help pay for the Agricultural Hall piano.
Very little, if any ploughing is being done, owing to the water carting, and the delay of the Mullewa Roads Board in fixing up proper conveniences at the Wollya water reserve. Feed and water are scarce and stock generally are poor. Wake up Mullewa Road Board; we shall have next summer her soon!
There is no school at Bindu yet, although I believe it was promised about 12 months ago. What are our members of Parliament for? Surely these growing up Australians deserve better attention at the hands of the Parliament.
We have had a lot of “Pommies” round here, and they are a first class type of manhood. They are always on the water wagon; are not afraid of hard work, or the heat, or rough living, and will surely make good Australians after a while. If these men could not battle along in the north of Australia, then I don’t think anyone could. Fill up the empty spaces with them and have no fears about holding this country.
While writing these note a north-west gale is blowing hard and the clouds of dust are that dense that one cannot see 50 yards off. They reach the sky. To give you anu an idea of the strength of the wind, I may mention I have a well on a dividing fence and when the sheep from the north paddock came for water it blew them through a six wire fence. It didn’t matter much, as it saved me from mustering that paddock. I thought I would get away from the wind and dust and went into the sandplain scrub and took guns with me, thinking I might get a shot. A nice turkey rose about 40 yards off, [40 metres] and I had a shot against the wind, but it was no use—the shot fell at my feet. The wind was too strong (fact). I do not know who has my paddocks now, as they have been blown away all day, but it doesn’t matter as I will get someone else’s soil. The dust must settle somewhere.—the house id full of it and we have to keep digging things out. It is the worst dust storm experience here. It started at 10,00 am and at 5.00 pm it was still going strong.
The euchre party and dance was held last night here, in aid of the Agricultural hall. There was a good attendance and all seemed to enjoy themselves. It is time the Government helped this hall with a small subsidy.
Water carting under great difficulties is still the order of the day, although a little thunderstorm passed over on Friday last and a few people caught a little household water.
Sometime ago you had a piece in the “Guardian” about a sagacious dog. Well, I have a bitch (pedigree dog) which mothers three little pigs who’s mother died at birth. When they went away from her kennel, She would quietly quietly work them back again. She would hunt her own pup away for the infant pigs. The same dog found a nest where the hen had just taken a chicken away, leaving one egg chipped, but not hatched. The dog heard a chicken squawking in the egg and carried it about 40 yards into the house and laid it down at the wife’s feet, then looked up with a whine. The chicken in a fine, healthy rooster now.

April 28th 1923

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The drought has broken, and all are glad. We had, I think, about one and a half inches [40 mm] of rain on Saturday and Sunday last. I have not seen a water cart on the road since and it feels so very pleasant to walk on moist ground, after the dust and loose sand for many months. Already green shoots of grass etc., are noticeable above ground, and before long I expect to see a lovely green coat covering the ground where previously all was dust.
I notice all the men on the land are now very busy plowing and some seeding. Mr. Stafford senr. has 150 acres [60 hectares] of oats drilled in, and Mr. Bob Oldham has 100 acres [40 hectares]
Mt. T. Shaw’s little son, Willie, returned home from hospital on Saturday last. He is slowly recovering from his burns. [Tom Shaw was a farmhand for the famous, the honorable M. F. Troy]
The G.C.A. in Geraldton should interest itself in the train service; it is absolutely abominable, I went to Utakarra stock sale last Friday and the train was so late the sale was over when it arrived, and on my return journey on Saturday it left an hour late. Fancy being without tucker from 7.30 am till 8.00 pm. A little while since I sent some cattle to Utakarra sale and they arrived late when nearly all the buyers were gone, hence 5 head of good cattle only realized 17 pounds [$34.00] instead of 30 pounds [$60.00]
The G.C.A. might interest itself in keeping cattle from grazing in the Methodist Cemetery. On my last visit there were cattle grazing and walking over the graves.

Note; 1923 was no drought at any point it seems in hindsight. June for example had 200mm and Tenindewa had 400mm for the year

July 19th 1923

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Rain, more rain and still some is the order of the day and night. It hampered putting in crops around here and a few are still to finish seeding. To show the pure cussedness of the Weather Clerk we had to cart water day after day until late summer and into autumn, which made us very late starting on the crops and since, rain has stopped us. It is common to see plows and other machines bogged in paddocks. Feed is very plentiful and stock are improving.
The Railway Department should be put in the hands of a business man to run, so that the revenue wanted by Sir James Mitchell could be obtained instead of as at present chasing it away.
To illustrate —at least a motor car a day passes along our road to or from Mullewa conveying from two to five people. This has started since the increased fares and owing to the heavy freight charges the settlers around here are trying to arrange a vehicle to go by road once a month to go for stores and take down loading. A thousand gallon tank (4500 litres) from Geraldton to Tenindewa costs in railage 2 pounds ($4.00), empty drapery cases about 4 foot square (1 metre square) costs 4 pounds ($8.00) 1 bag of cement costs 3 shillings and sixpence (35 cents) and so on. Is it any wonder the farmers cannot make a do of things?
The first duty of a railway in a new country like W.A. is to help development. It was never intended that the railways should be a paying concern. The Government receives other revenue which compensates by land settlement etc wherever a line is put. When will the Government see the folly of these excessive fares and freights? The carriages are empty and the people are getting as little as possible by goods train. It costs just as much to run an empty carriage as a full one and the same with a truck. We have thousands of tons of the best fire wood going to waste and burning up in the fields, whereas it should be keeping the many houses in Geraldton warm and comfortable, but here again rail charges are too heavy. It is good traffic and pays well. There is no handling or responsibility for the railways with it and it can be lifted at their convenience. Again if a farmer sends stock away or receives same he is bumped and most of the sale price gone to rail revenue. I got a 60 pound pig (24 kgs) in a create a few weeks since and the freight was 9 shillings and sixpence ($1.00) A thousand gallon tank costing 8 pounds ($16.00) in Perth costs over 6 pounds ($12.00) in freight. Why not shut up the railways and get to the old bullock wagons and hose teams again–they would be nearly as quick, too, and far cheaper.
The new school at Bindu is nearly completed and it will be a good thing for the kiddies there. It is a pity to see nice bright children neglected in education.
Mr. Joe Stone of the Railway Department is being transferred down Bunbury way, after many years of good service here. Joe is always willing to help anything along. They are giving him a proper send off next Saturday. I wish him well in his new job.
The Wollya Water Supply outfit is still in a disgraceful condition and it appears to be useless to write to the Road Board, Public Works Department or our member. I suppose it will be left until we are short of water again. The cry by the Premier and his Minister for Agriculture is “Produce more wheat” and still they will not even spend a few pounds in giving decent facilities for hauling water. All through last summer it was common to see a half dozen teams waiting for water and only two old rickety windlasses with one handle each to use.

September 7th 1923.

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Though the crops look healthy and nice, if the clouds which accumulate in the sky every day, lately, would all tumble to pieces over our farms and saturate the earth, we would be over joyful. If they won’t do this, we wish they would clear to the deuee out of sight. Day after day threatening to rain is worse than none.
Our district of Bindu this season is going to hold its end up not withstanding J.J. Keeffe has a 30 bushel crop. Frank McGuiness is running this close at Devils Creek: eight bags average (1.6 tonne per hectare) over 700 acres (280 hectares) is what Brenkley Bros. expect this year, and, in anticipation of this bumper harvest, Mr. Walter Brenkley has ordered a 500 pounds ($1000.00) tractor. Good on you, Walter. We will show them what our district can produce even though the Government is against the Yuna [Railway] line and everything else to progress the progress of the cockies.
Some people, Mr. Editor, leave all their money etc., to relatives and friends after they turn their toes up. Not so for our farming friend Mr. Glen Malony, of Walkaway. He believes in living to see how he or she, to who he may befriend, carry on. So, in accordance with his belief, he has just presented his son Glen Malony with as nice a freehold farm of 3000 acres (1200 hectares) as anyone would wish to acquire, together with 500 sheep, working horses and machinery. If Glen doesn’t make good, he ort to, for such fathers are not too numerous.
Note; (This property is situated immediately to the west of Indarra on the south side of the line. It was sold to the Smith family in 1868)
I met Mr. T Cooper the other day. He has not been too long back from Victoria. He went there to see his the last of his aged mother and, arrived there just before the good lady died. He told me Mr. “Texas” Green was on the same train across, and he (Mr. Cooper) was surprised at Mr. Green’s intelligence. Not all logs of wood these Labor chaps, though some do come from the jarrah. [country]
I was greatly amused at “Jingo’s” skit not so long ago, on the anti-sleep contest by two Italians going for 98 hours without sleep, but I want to inform my brother scribe that he was wide of the mark, so to enlighten him , and let others know, I must inform him our new Agent General was authorized by Western Australian cockies to organize in every country he touched, one of those anti-sleep contests until a race became perfect and could do without sleep altogether. This becoming a fact, he had then to charter steamers and pack them out here as the right class of immigrants for WA. Compres?
Our branch of the Oddfellows Lodge is still going strong and has done more than anything hitherto to strengthen the friendship and social standing of all. I consider every country place should endeavor to have a lodge of some sort. What is good for the country chap also applies to the bumpkin.

October 24th 1923

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

From brumby to motor car is a good stride. That’s the way we do it at Tenindewa. this is a very progressive place, and it getting up to date in farming methods, as no doubt benefitting from our agricultural expert on the Wimmera Methods. Mr. W. H. Stokes and Brenkley Bros, have both purchased tractors [one] a Fordson and the other a “Cletrac”. One has a motor car and rumor says the other is to get one. Both the tractor and the motor car are necessary to the farm, because people say, “time is money,” and this can be saved with a car, and it brings the farmer closer to the town, so that he can spend his money easier, or run up some “tick.” I always notice when the crops are good, as they are this year, a lot of things are up to be ordered, but somehow when the crop is garnered the things anticipated don’t pan out.
Most of the farmers are busy haymaking. One man told me he was cutting three tons to the acre—one of wheat and two of radish. Another is cutting 2 ton of real wheat.
The Bindu school is an accomplished fact and the kiddies are being educated in the way they should go. The school has been officially Christened and the floor danced upon by a good crown a couple of Saturday’s since.
The Wollya water appliances are still in the same old disgraceful state—mill out of order and only two old broken windlasses on the wells. Mr. Maley our member, should make a note before next summer comes–I mean, next election [comes].
We have lost our old friend, Mr. Carson, from the Road Board at Mullewa, and we wish him luck in his new position at Northam. Its a pity we could not loose the road Board now for all the use it is to our ward. The Roads are bad and nothing is done although we make repeated requests.

December 10th 1923

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)

Record crops are now being harvested around our district, and it is interesting and amusing to listen to the great yields gathered in. Devil’s Creek farmers are very jubilant this season. There is no-one out there with a bad crop. The rivalry amongst all while harvesting goes to show the enthusiasm, enterprise and interest each one has for his own little dig out “down on the farm.” It is nothing to hear the Meadowcroft boys are pulling off 80 bags a day [6.5 tonne]; J. J. Keeffe gathering in 30 bushel crop; Sid Eves cutting 2 ton of wheaten hay to the acre; while his oats are stripping 30 bushels; and that Horrie Peet is bagging 7 bags to the acre from a [crop that looks just a]15 bushel crop. But Walter Brenkley, of Bindu, knocks this silly, for with his 500 pound [$1000.00] tractor towing a reaper-thresher, he gobbles up 150 bags of wheat every day. [12.5 tonne] By jingo, that’s the stuff to give ’em eh.
The market for the sale of wheat reminds me of the days when I sold lead, the price fluctuating and see-sawing every week. No trouble to sell wheat this year, for every second person one meets now is either a buyer or an agent. Believe me, it is not safe to drive into any siding with a waggon [sic] load of wheat if you have young horses, yoked thereto, while buyers and agents are charging at you like a squad of Anzacs.
Mr. Editor please let me correct a statement I made in my last notes that Messes. R. Dunkin and G. Valentine were clients of the I.A.B. No, sir I am glad to say, these two energetic farmers never had the brand of failure as a cocky I.A.B. stamped on any part of their anatomy. Their banking accounts have swelled through their own solid hard toil and grit.
Concerts and socials are regularly held here, for we have not paid for our piano . Mr. Glen Maloney handled the last one, and showed a good profit. Mrs. Eves, as usual, helped all she could. Miss McGuinness from Devil’s Creek, and Mr. Frank Butler, Bindu, gave Mrs. Peet breathing time by helping her provide the music for the dancing.
The Devil’s Creek people, beside being good farmers, are champion sports, too. A couple of Sundays ago they organized a gigantic picnic, and held it at Seven Mile pool on the Stock Route. So, if you hear of rinderpest breaking out near there, or any drover losing half his mob, you can soon tumble why and where. Among the many gathered there I noticed Mr. and Mrs. Kelly, of the Mullewa pubbery. Mine host and his wife are very popular,. All sorts of aquatic sport were held in the pool. Three times around Mrs. Eves who stood in the middle of the pool constituted a mile, Mr. Clarrie Meadowcroft won the event from 14 others. The diving competition, owing to no prize being forthcoming, was about to be struck off the programme, when luckily, a young lady while convulsed with laughter, last her set of false teeth, heavily cased in gold. Mr. Peter Jefferson proved another Diver Hughes by recovering the lady’s food munchers. Too long to go through all the items, and when the lady before mentioned, who was standing in the pool, had an attack of cold shivers, and a buggy was hauled in to relive her, I left for Tenindewa, but without doubt it was a great picnic, and, as Mrs. J.J. Keeffe says, next time she will take care she does not walk four miles out of her course (don’t let anyone say she got bushed) and Mr. Charlie Meadowcroft is going to give a certain young lady swimming lessons. The next picnic will be “The One.”
Knowing there are a lot of 16th Battalion diggers in and around Geraldton and District, I feel sure they will smile when they read in the “Express” that I was at Mullewa on Monday week, when “Schnapper” O’Loughlin, Corporal of C. Company, got married. Game as ever, he never flinched right through the ceremony, and though afterwards the barrage of beer bottles skittled me. no ambulance had to be called for “Schnapper” for, after being attended to at his brothers dressing station, he left with his wife on their honeymoon to the east. Another raid for the 16th with objective taken.
When the Yuna Line goes through (about election time) don’t allow politicians to have all the hamper. Just hand out a sandwich to Harry Pass, for Sandow, with all his strength could not have endured what our good friend Harry went through getting the Advisory Board across county along the preposed new railway route. He spared neither time, money nor self, and, as Ned Kelly was never a better bushman, the driver of the first engine on this line need not fear that he will run over a precipice or into any sly-grog shanty, for harry blazed the track.

January 3rd 1924

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The harvesting of grain is almost completed [from the 1923 crop] around here, and the 30 bushel crops will average out about 12 bushels. [.8 tonne/hectare] When a man starts harvest he generally gets into the best stuff, and there was some good, and he generally “kids” himself that he is averaging 30 bushels [2 tonne/hectare]. Well its good to build castles in the air sometimes, as farming is generally a very dreary game. This year there was too much straw which reduced the yield.
The children had a splendid time just before Christmas. The teachers at the Tenindewa and Bindu combined for a Christmas tree and a jolly evening, and collected some 17 pounds [$34.00] Credit is due to all, and the children are the best collectors. Next day there were toys of all description in every house from Bindu to Tenindewa.
We have had a storm or two and they did a deal of damage. Messrs. Brenkley Bros. lost about 200 bags of wheat; Mr. Stafford lost some wheat and a 120 acres of oats. The hail covered the ground until it was quite white. Others has smaller losses.
A number of immigrants are working in this district and they are shaping very well and will be a big factor in the future. They stick to their work and their wages.
feed is plentiful, nearly as good as 1915, but sheep are too high [in price] for most farmers who are I.A.B. clients and fear to go into cattle owing to the rinderpest scare.

February 1924

Country Cricket

Tenindewa Vs Bindu
(by “Jingy Man”)

The following are the details of a match, which was played on the Tenindewa Recreation Ground last Sunday between teams representing Tenindewa and Bindu cricket teams, [North Tenindewa]in which the latter was defeated rather easily. The top score for Tenindewa was 57, and out of the 57 runs made there were thirteen fours [ie 52] hit. The next highest was 42, and this included six fours and 2 sixes [ie 36]. So one can see the Bindu players had some leather chasing to do. The 200 made by Tenindewa were hit up by nine batsmen.

Tenindewa
Shade retired 25
A Rumble retired 57
Stokes b Hawes 29
Oldham retired 42
Whitely c Rule b Brenkley 5
Willis c and b Brenkley 7
F Butler c Hawkins b Hawes 1
Eves b Brenkley 0
A Butler not out 15
James c Hawkins b Hawes 14
Sundries 5

Total 200

Bindu
Brodrick b Butler 3
Brenkley lbw b Oldham 5
Hawes c Rumble b Whitely 0
F Rule c and b Butler 4
Hawkins b Oldham 11
Kilgallon b Whitley 4
Thurn not out 4
W Rule b Rumble 0
Griffiths c and b Rumble 1
M Kilgallon b Rumble 1
Benoit b Oldham 1
Sundries 4

Total 38


May 15th 1924

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

All the “backbone of the country” are busy as possible, putting in more crop. It’s a lovely gamble. They till the ground, scatter the good seed and pay for the fertilizer, and perhaps to not get enough to pay costs. They may get a good crop and thus receive encouragement to have another try. The dry weather is alright for the fallow, but the other ground is most hard to work. Dad is promising a lot from this next crop. Stock are all in good condition and feed is plentiful as there is very little stock in the district to eat it. Most of the farmers sold their sheep to the ring who have scooped so much this year with the “woolies”.
Today is election day (Upper House). Who will win? I tip “Old Joe”. Anyhow he deserves it. It’s a pity two such good men should be opponents. They both deserve a seat in the Council of the State. However, one has to stand down, so I suggest if Joe goes out that he runs Johnnie’s paper while Johnnie attend parliament.
The young men around here have have the boxing crase and a number of would be champions
are spoiling for a fight.
Great dissatisfaction is expressed amongst the I.A.B. settlers [and] at the Mitchell Government for the way they have starved the off their holdings. A few around here have notice sell by June, or foreclose, and some of them are better off than for years, with a good chance of rise. Fancy struggling for fourteen years against drought, war, and high prizes and then being knocked off………….

June 17th 1924

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Most of our cockies’ faces are beaming with smiles owing to the top notch rains. Crops are up and look well but a few cockies are not smiling; they are the ones on the I.A.B., who are men in jail waiting to be hanged– they are waiting for the Labour Government to give them their notice to quit their farms, but the Government is playing a rotton hand. They induce the farmers to put their crops in, saying they would inspect in June, and now the crops are in they are offered the high price of one shilling, one and half pence [11 and 1/2 cents] per acre to fallow. Why not give the decision at once instead of this hang-dog policy?
How’s the dairying, Mr. Editor ? Some here would like to know. I don’t know much about it; what I do not know would fill a big book, and what I do know would not take many lines, so I’m going to give it too your readers. If all others did the same, it might help a bit during the hot weather and reduce the amount of second quality cream.
First of all get some good cows. Separate the cream with a good separator, suction feed preferred. Keep the machine thoroughly washed in hot water (use soda occasionally) after using it and dry it thoroughly. Put the cream in a cooler (Coolgardie Cooler I mean) so as to cool quickly. Never mix the warm cream with the cool cream of the previous day, until it is thoroughly cool. Stir the cream three times daily from the bottom of the can upwards. This is to ripen it evenly and to keep the thick part from forming on top. Keep it always in the cooler with the top of the can ventilated.
When taking cream to the railway, stand cream on a folded wet bag; have another wet bag on top, and secure it firmly to the cart to minimize shacking. If you do this you can land cream of first grade at the factory, even from this distance after keeping it for a week.

August 21st 1924

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Travelers through this part say our crops are looking better than in any other district. This maybe true because they look splendid; never better for years; and if the price soars as is expected, the Cocky will reap some reward; but all those who have a pick at it will see it is not too much. We sold our wheat cheaply last year, still it costs “eight and one half penny” ($0.85) to land a loaf of bread at Tenindewa from Geraldton, and this scribe is going to start backing his own.
Feed and water are plentiful and stock scarce.
Regular dances are held in Tenindewa hall every Saturday night, and are appreciated by the young folk and a few old ones too. The funds are so raised to go to the hall piano.

Another car for here. Mr Nat Rumble has just purchased a new car. His smile is generally broad, but now it is extended. I wish him all sorts of luck. Others are talking about ordering cars, and no farm should be without. A good car and a listening- in set would make life a lot easier in the bush, especially so, if there are not too many lectures on wheat growing and such matters. Cocky gets enough of it without the easy-chair men drilling more into him.

When oh when is that butter factory going to start. It is like most things in Geraldton—hoes for a while and then fizzes out. Why not auction it and give a private a chance? Its been a dismal failure so far.

A number of I.A.B. farmers have received notice to sell out, or be kicked out. This is a good thing for many, as it will give them a clean sheet to start again. And with the experience gained in dealing with the I.A.B. they would not be likely to accept aid from that quarter again. I suppose the next big clean up will be amongst the South West group settlements; and the I.A.B. won’t be in it.

Fancy trying to make money in W.A. growing produce; its the hardest work to sell good butter at one and sixpence/pound ($0.33/ kg) less freight; and there is always so much to be said about stopping the Eastern States from exploiting WA. Get some population and then it may pay to provide butter, vegetables, etc.

September 18th 1924
Geraldton Guardian

Mullewa News (From our own Correspondent)

An enjoyable social and dance was held on Saturday night under the auspices of the Oddfellows’ Lodge. Rummy and bridge, for the non dancers, were held on stage. These card tournaments were a great draw, and brought many along, especially the older folk, who are a bit too stiff in the joints to dance. The committee of the lodge tried it as an experiment, and the results were gratifying. In the rummy competition, little Diana Underwood won easily. The prize (one pound)[$2.00] was donated by Mr. Geo. Valentine, of Tenindewa. The competition among the bridge players was keen. The winning couple was Mrs. J.T. Harley and Mr. P.F. Rooke. These prizes were donated by Dr. Hobbs, and Mrs. Wood of the Railway Hotel. Mr. R Frayne looked after the card arrangements, and Mr. C. Radford made an excellent M.C. for the dancing. Miss F. Haley presided at the piano. The supper was in the hands of Mesdames Haslem, underwood and Radford. On the 27th inst., a welcome-home will be tendered to Mrs. R. Franyne, on return from his honeymoon; he was married at Yalgoo during last week to Miss Thelma Haselden.
At the Church of England bazaar held recently, the Ugly Man competition was not finalized on that occasion, but was concluded on Thursday evening, when a concert was held in conjunction. An enjoyable evening was held, the receipts exceeding expectations. The Ugly man competition was won by Mr. T. Molster, with Mr. Yelverton and good second. A musical programme was gone through and was thoroughly enjoyed by a large crowd. Special mention must be made of the items rendered by the State school children, which reflected credit on the schoolmaster, Mr. A. Hopkins, and his assistant, Miss McLean. It showed the youngsters hade been carefully trained. More performances by the children in the future would be appreciated by the parents, as we do not hear enough of our children in concert performances. The following contributed to the programme;–Pianoforte duet, “Signal from Mars” Misses Haley and O’Conner; selections from “The White Garland” by the State school children and leading parts being: “Queen” Thelma Young; “Punctuality” Alice Isbel; “Perseverance” Louse Haslem; and “Tardy Scholar” Keith Styants. A second item by the scholars was ” I Passed By Your Window” –a very pleasing item. Miss A. Donegan presided at he piano in the school items. A recitation by Louse Haslem, “A Deed of Horror” was encored and she gave “Just as Mother Used To”; duet, “Look for the Silver Lining” by Agnus Webb and Thelma Young; dialogue, “The Fortune Teller” by Daisy Axford and Alice Isbel; and song by Mr. P.F Rooke, entitled “Old Pal.” At the conclusion of the concert the competition voting was concluded, and the evening closed with a dance. Supper was provided by the ladies of the church. The whole effort including the bazaar, will nett close to one hundred pounds [$200.00] The rector thanked all those who had worked so hard in making the fiscal results so satisfactory, especially the ladies who had sacrificed a lot of time and effort,
…………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Some girls paint for a hobby; other for a hubby.

November 11th 1924

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

A successful dance was held in the Tenindewa Hall on Saturday evening last. Visitors from Mullewa, Ardingly, Bindu, and Indarra motored over and an enjoyable time was spent. The balloon waltz caused much fun and excitement, the winning couple being, Mr. W Keeffe and Miss Rita O’Connor. Dancing went with a decided swing to music supplied by our Ardingly musician (Mrs. Peet) and the Misses R O’Connor and Kidd. Mr. W Keeffe acted as M.C. After supper music was continued, and it was an early hour before the party broke up. Great credit to Mrs. Eves and committee for the arrangements.
The rector of Merredin (Rev H. R. Hobbs) formally rector of the Parish of Mullewa, has been under the care of Dr. Shelmadine for some weeks. His many friends will be pleased to hear he is about again.

December 9th 1924

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

All are very busy taking off the harvest and good yields are being bagged, some up to 30 bushels per acre. [2 tonne/hectare]. The general averages will be better than for a long while.
The siding now presents a busy scene, teams arriving regularly with the rich grain, and the men handling it find the weight of the bags sound enough. It is anticipated that 15,000 or 16,000 bags 1160 ton] will be loaded at Tenindewa.
Thousands of sheep (poverty stricken) from the Murchison are being landed in this district, and the farmers are making only a nominal charge for [adgisting] them. It is a pity the Murchison people did not think of this idea earlier, as some of the sheep arrived here in very low condition, and hundreds died in the trucks. They are improving visibly in this well-grassed country.
Christmas is near and our Bindu teacher is busy collecting for the Christmas tree. May they do well and enjoy it to the full.
There is still the fighting element around here; and some think of championships. A recent “scrap” at Bindu was worth seeing, and was properly referred by a fighter from the Old Country. Honors in the bout were about even, and the gladiators finished good friends. It was a water fight, no beer being on tap.

January 7th 1925

Doings at Tenindewa (From our Correspondent)

Here’s wealth and success
To the staff of the “Express”
With a prosperous and happy New Year
And when I come down
To Geraldton town
I’ll drink your good health in Globe Beer

Christmas time here was really worth stopping home for. The usual Christmas tree for the children was held at the Bindu School and proved a gigantic success. Toys in galore for the young folk, besides soft drinks cakes etc., while the elders enjoyed themselves dancing and listening to singing, recitations and stump [sic] speeches. Mr. Billy Griffiths made an ideal Santa Claus, and with mohair whiskers from Mr. C. B. Palmer’s Angora goats, looking just it. At the interval Mr. Benoit made a brief neat speech, eulogizing [sic] Miss. M. Jefferson, the lady teacher of the Bindu School, for the advancement she had made towards the education of our children. Great credit must be given to this young lady for the energetic manner in which she single-handed arranged and collected for the Christmas tree. Let me here thank all those kind friends who so generously subscribed to make this function the success it was. To Mr. Frank Butler and Sandy Boylan, we will always be indebted for providing the music.
Naturally, I suppose there was some critics, but as we all know they who criticize give the least, and the biggest critic is the most unsuccessful, we leave them to themselves.
Very dry weather lately, and as our water supply does not look like lasting too long, I should like to point out to the Minister for Agriculture that those ornamental tanks would look a lot better filled with water, for what unearthly use are they stuck all along the railway empty? Surely they are not to be used as camp ovens. We cockies would only be too pleased to help to keep the tanks from running over, and the water from stagnation. So, fill em up Mr. Troy.
Mr. Brenkley, with his sister Miss Alice Brenkley, whilst walking to look at a dingo trap, were singing, “If we catch a fox, we’ll put him in a box and a hunting we will go,” and sure enough in the dingo trap was a fox. So, off with him to Mullewa went Walter. Result 2 pounds [$4.00] for Jack the Fox.
I have had a message from Mars.
My old friend Clement Wragge, broadcasted down to me to tell the cockies to work double shifts to secure their harvests, for as sure as H- is a man trap, a thunderstorm will be sent to tickle them up soon.
Whilst discussing the merits of the Ford car , which often careers around with 4 gates hanging on the front, and more of less of ten chain [200 metres] of a six wire fence trailing behind, someone remarked “What a pity the owner is not like the maker, Henry Ford, a teetotaller.” Another chap interjected, and said : “Ford may be a teetotaller, but on his Ford cars is the best invention I have ever seen for opening beer bottles. Just watch this driver open a bottle without leaving his seat.” We did too, and that was our share of it—-watching him drink it.

April 20th 1925

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Tractors are becoming all the go here, the latest farmers to acquire are Messrs. Butler Bros. and Mr. J Smith, and I understand they are so far pleased with them.
Seeding has commenced and a few well advanced, and that on well worked fallow is already showing above the ground.
Stock are looking well and there is plenty of feed on most farms.
Miss Alice Brinkley met with an accident to-day. Thee horse she was driving ran the sulky against a tree and capsized her out, bruising her a good deal. Still she pluckily proceeded on her business, and then drove home 9 miles. It is hoped she will soon be all right again.



November 21st 1925

Ardingly Notes (From our own Correspondent)
In the latter years (ie approaching 1930) Leo seemed to broadening his news base with the likes of Mullewa and Ardingly becoming part of his reports.
The fine crops about here are evidence that the weather has just suited the Mullewa district. At the critical period in August we received beneficial rains, over one and half inches being recorded [40 mm], while very light rains fell over the southern wheat division. The season has been most favorable in the northern division of the wheat-belt, as in that portion an increase on the past year of 339,856 bushels is anticipated. Yalgoo is reported as having 32,000 acres under wheat for an estimated production 407,000 bushels. It is time the name was altered to Mullewa, as Yalgoo is not a wheat growing centre being purely mining and pastoral. Mullewa is always omitted in the official forecast. Hay-cutting is finished and some excellent yields have been obtained. Harvesting is in full swing, but the cloudy blustery weather experienced during the last few days has hindered harvest somewhat. Most of the wheat will be conveyed to the siding per medium of motor trucks this season. Messrs. Fitzgerald’s trucks are already running to and fro. Tractors are also in evidence on the various farms. Messrs. Cowper, Thomas and Peet getting good results from theirs.
Some fine yields up to 27 bushels per acre [1.75 tonne per hectare] but the general average will be from 12 to 15 bushels per acre.
Messrs. O’Brien, Cowper, Keeffe, McGuinness, Meadowcroft, Warren, Thomas and Peet and also the Menang settlers are the most progressive here.
The St. Andrews Anglican bazaar held recently in Mullewa was a great success. Mr. Purdy, who is in charge , has achieved wonders during the short time he has been here, and is very well liked. The stalls, tastefully decorated and stocked, reflected great credit on the members of the Ladies Guild and their willing helpers. The popular girl and boy competition brought in a good figure, the total profits from the bazaar being 197 pounds [$394.00] Mr. Webb, merits special thanks for his excellent services in the cause of the church. He is an all-round sport, and deservedly popular. The support also received from Pindar, Ardingly and Tenindewa residents was most gratifying.
Mr. and Mrs. Joe O’Brien are very pleased with the arrival of a little daughter recently. This makes the “pigeon pair”
A fresh water tank should be installed at Ardingly siding similar to that at Tenindewa, to meet the needs of the settlers during the summer months. The water supply department makes a charge of one shilling and sixpence per 100 gallons, I believe. [15 cents per 450 litres]

November 24th 1925

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

All the farmers are busy stripping the the “staff of life” and crops are yielding up to as high as 36 bushels per acre (2.42 tonnes per hectare) —–so some of them say. Anyway it will be better to believe their railway tally later on, as cocky is like the man who fishes and the man that kills snakes. Still I know the crops are good and the price is nearly high enough to be payable.
Apparently the railway arrangement for lifting wheat are going to be inadequate, as no trucks were supplied during the last week and stacks are accumulating. This means double handling and there is only one who pays for this and that is the farmer. Old Ben (perhaps Benoît) has the biggest crop, and it is going 36 bushels. Tenindewa is becoming noted for its good crops.
Motor lorries are moving in all directions and the wheat is being expeditiously brought to the sidings, so carting will not be the long, drawn out job of former years. I do not know of any farmer that is carting in the old style.
The road grant was only partly spent when the gang received word to close down at a moment’s notice, hence the work done is of a patchy nature.
Mr. Palmer is still in Perth hospital but I understand is improving.

December 12th 1925

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Harvesting is going on apace [sic] and the carting off the farm is all being done by motor power, and so the poor overworked gee-gee is having a spell from that hard dragging job. Still plenty of people (especially the breeders) that motor power is not here to stay and that the horse, will come into its own again. If this is so, why are they shooting horses by the thousand in South Australia? Even around this little place horses are cut out of all road work and a great deal of farm work. One farmer, Mr. W.H. Stokes, has all motor power and not a horse on the farm, he is right up to date.
Thirty six bushels to the acre [2.4 tonne/hectare] is the highest yield I have heard of from Yandilla King, grown by Mr. A. E. Benoit of Sleepy Hollow, and 30 bushels crops are common—and so are 12 bushel crops.
The weather is very stormy and last Sunday week a real blow came along and destroyed a lot of wheat crops, which were stripping eight bags to the acre [1.4 tonne per hectare] diminished the the yield of five bags per acre. [one tonne per hectare] Wheat farming is a lovable gamble. This reminds me the insurance companies will insure a crop against fire or hail, but if wind or rain comes along and flattens it out, nothing is paid. Why don’t they give a general policy against damage? ‘Roos, emus and rabbits damage a lot, but a man can prevent that to some extent
This siding will have between 30,000 and 40,000 bags of wheat this year—a record. There are a lot of motor cars and tractors to come from this harvest, and the kids should have a good time at Xmas.
Mr. Palmer, senr. has returned to Tenindewa and is much better, but still far from old self. We hope that he will soon be hitting the pace again.
Mr. Stafford, senr. was nearly burned out a few days since. Some lorrymen [sic] camped near his crop, had a fire in the open, and a willy [willy] caught it and spread it in no time, burning their camp and about 40 pounds [$80.00] worth of truck parts and kit.
The Bindu school is soon to break up for holidays, and a splendid Christmas tree and good time have been arranged for the nippers. May they all enjoy it.
Wheat growers around here fell in badly this season in selling too early. Wheat was sold from four shillings and ten pence to five shillings and two pence and now it is six shillings and one pence, a good argument for the pool.

January 5th 1926

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)

As I write there is a big storm all around, north and east. The clouds are as black as ink, the lightening is vivid and thunder rolls like heavy artillery. The wind is blowing some and rain falls heavy, so some of those who have not [got] their crops off will suffer loss.
Christmas day was not kind to the farmer around here, as a very heavy storm occurred with much hail, and Messes Bedford, Brinkley and others out Bindu way suffered loss. A few have finished gathering the golden harvest, but many have a few days work still.
Mr. C. B. Palmer has sold his farm and gone East to start a goat farm. He is a great believer in their value. Messes Kemp Bros. the new owners are to take possession this week and I wish them well.
Tenindewa is supposed to be the Waterloo of all water diviners, and they have failed badly, but now we have a new man amongst us (Mr. C. W. Chapman); he does not divine water but finds it, and he is a pretty good geologist. he found an abundant supply of fresh water for Mr. M. F. Troy and since then has found a good supply of over 2000 gallons ( liters) a day for Mr. Jas. Bedford. Finding water will make a vast difference in this district, and large numbers of stock will now be kept. Mr. Chapman has many engagements to fulfil with settlers around nd in adjacent districts.
Another returned soldier has made good in Mr. Jim Bedford, who has over 2000 bags of wheat this year and has cleared 500 acres since going into the virgin bush in 1921. He is a great worker, and has a very fine property, and now it is well watered.
Messes G Valentine and Mr. R Dunkin are treating themselves to new motor cars, the former an Oakland and the latter a Willys-Knight, and others are to follow suit.
Mr. R. Oldham harvested over 3000 bags (250 tonne) of wheat this year and I think a record for the district.

June 1st 1926

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

There is a very large area of wheat around here seeded this year, and nearly all have finished, there being just a few stragglers to wind up
The rains have been good and feed is plentiful; stock are improving fast. If the season keeps on as it is then a bumper harvest (discounting rust) should be the result.
Mr. Palmer, (sen) is home again but is still unwell. His trip to Perth evidently has not benefitted him much.
Mr. H Johnson has been in Mullewa Hospital with pneumonia, but thanks to his robust nature he is about again and hard at work.
Farmers generally are pleased at the result of the Council election, but would rather have had “old Joe” in power and many think and say Mr. Joe Mills should contest the Greenough seat against Labour.
Tractors are still arriving in this part and every cocky has a motor car and not just a “tin lizzie” either.
Personally, I would have a “lizzie'” every time, if only to support a wonder man like Henry Ford. If more industries would adopt his methods the great revolution would perhaps be staved off. Capital and Labour cannot agree under present methods, even the farmers are adopting “slight co-op” methods. It is a common practice now for farmers to give their employees an area to crop and a portion of the crop.
I know a farmer around here (an oldish man too) who should be sent to the Olympic sports as a jumper. The other day he was standing along side a cow bailed up ready to milk, when another cow objected to his presence and charged him, and he was in such a hurry to get away that he cleared cow and fence in a standing jump. Its wonderful what a man can do if the matter is urgent.
Mrs. Stafford is on a visit here to her son in law (Mr. R. Dunkin)
The hall recently used for dances etc, has been sold and removed much to the regret of the young people.
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To-Days Forecast– Still unsettled with further rains over west and south west coastal areas, agricultural districts, and scattered through the Gascoyne and goldfields” Squally north-west to south-west winds, rough coastal weather, Ocean: Heavy north-west to west weather off west and south-west coasts, and across the Bight.

December 11th 1926

Mullewa District Cricket Association

Town Vs Tenindewa

The above match, the last of the second round, was played at Tenindewa on Sunday, a fair crowd rolled up. The Towns had first use of the wicket and opened up with Yelverton and Evans and the first wicket fell at 63. Yelverton being caught for 26. The team was all oy for 150 and Thomas carried his bat for 57 while Evans 41 and J.Toomey 16 were the other to reach double figures. Rumble was best of the bowlers taking 6 for 33. Tenindewa replied with 85 of which Rumble 26, A. Butler 23, and F. Butler 10 were the only batsmen to reach double figures. Evans 3 for 7 and Toomey 3 for 13 and Hayley 2 for 4 were the main bowlers. The visitors were given afternoon tea by the and it proved very nice; the afternoon on the whole proved enjoyable and it is to be hoped that the Towns team will treat its visitors
The following are the scores;

Towns
Yelverton c Starling b Rumble 26
Evans b F Butler 41
Langford run out 1
Thomas not out 57
Hayley lbw Oldham 3
Toomey c A Butler b Rumble 16
Nevil c A Butler b Starling 0
Isbel c Oldham b Rumble 1
Frazer b Rumble 0
Radford b Rumble 0
Baxter b Rumble 0
Sundries 6

Total 150
Bowling:- Rumble 6 for 38, F Butler 1 for 60, Oldham 1 for 28, Starling for 12, A Butler 0 for 12

Tenindewa
F Butler c Toomey b Isbel 10
Clowes lbw Toomey 0
Rumble run out 26
Oldham lbw Toomey 9
Goldsworthy b Haley 1
Jones b Toomey 0
A Butler c Thomas b Evans 23
Payne stp. Thomas b Hayley 1
Griffiths c Toomey b Evans 3
Hawes stp. Thomas b Evans 0
Starling not out 0
Sundries 12

Total 85

Bowling:– Isbel 1 for 22, Langford 0 for 19, J Toomey 3 for 13, Yelverton 0 for 5, Haley 2 for 4, Evans 3 for 7

December 14th 1926

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

I must start with the backbone of the country, and say they are progressing well garnering the golden grain, and most of the yields are very satisfactory, and in a few cases over 30 bushels (2 tonne per hectare). Old Ben (probably Benoit) tops the yield as per usual with a 12 bag (2.4 tonne per hectare) crop of Yandilla King. It’s wonderful the yields of a wheat crop. Still its not always really so good when all balanced up. Septoria did not make difference to yields around here. Tenindewa is in a very fine position from a wheat growing point of view. A nice distance from the coast, it thus avoids red rust, and is far enough inland to produce the best grain with sufficient rainfall, and whilst the ground is not that stiff in nature, which requires such good fallow and plenty of rain. Stock are all looking well and there is plenty of feed around.
Mr. Stafford is the latest tractor and truck owner, and has practically cut out the poor old gee-gee. He harvested his crop with that this year and it proved very satisfactory, being much quicker than the horse and the pace [of the harvester] is always even. A few farmers are talking of getting tractors.
The Bindu school Christmas tree for the kiddies comes off next Saturday, and the new teacher (Miss Shires) is hard at work arranging matters and has the able assistance of most of the young men around here,
I heard a good one the other day, Mr. Editor, and I’ll pass it on to you. A farmer here does not like chopping the household firewood, and he does not like to see his wife do it, so he fixes the matter by going way out of sight while she does it. His latest idea, however, is to take his tractor and run over the wood heap several times and this solves the problem without much perspiration.
There is often this talk about this Big Brother movement. Don’t you think it is better to have a Big Sister movement? There are a lot of eligible young men around here wanting a wife and there are none available. I suppose it is the same in other districts. You had better advocate this strongly so at to get a few shipments from from the Old Country and pass some on here.

March 2nd 1927

Tenindewa Notes (from our Correspondent)

As the only humming to be heard now comes from the busy bees I presume harvest is all finished. I think, without boasting, that our district before long will be up among the highest producers in the state. Even now we will take beating. Time after time you have read from your different country correspondents of great yields of grain this year, but to my mind the Minister for Agriculture, Mr. M. F. Troy, has shown that he knows something about the department he is king of, by producing 4600 bags of wheat (383 tonne) from 600 acres (240 hectares). In one particular paddock he stripped fourteen bags to the acre (2.4 tonne per hectare). Although this I think is the best in our districts, the most credible yield was from Mr. Tom Moore’s farm at Indarra, 1884 (157.5 tonne) bags of wheat from 300 acres (120 hectares). As Tom nor Bob Moore are any relation to the Rothchilds, they were accordingly handicapped in their first kick-off as farmers. If ever a man deserved reward for his labour it was Bob Moore. Work was the only mate Bob appreciated and stuck to, and I am glad to hear he was well recompensed.
On the 15th of February the Westralian Farmers (Wesfarmers) gave a tractor and the latest agricultural machinery demonstration at Messrs. Nat and Alex Rumbles farm at Tenindewa. It was a great success from both the farmers and the agent’s point of view, Mr. Logan being kept busy booking orders. So impressed was Mr. H Stafford with the plow that he gobbled it up at once and for the way the Horward Bagshaw cultivator did its work, the many orders booked vouched for that.

The “cocky” just now is the whitest snoozer in the world. The elections are coming on and what the aspiring candidates are not going to do for our welfare cannot be told, so what with the Nationalist, United, Country Party and Labourites are telling us what they will do if we only give them the handling of that 600 pounds a year ($1200.00) we are wondering who will give the best Santa Claus. Personally, I wish it were over, and then the successful one could send us some rain, for the weather lately has been abominable. I read in notes from your Upper Chapman correspondent a complaint about the cornsacks sold to farmers and that in spite of cramming, ramming slamming and jamming it was impossible to put put 180 lbs (86 kgs) of wheat in one bag. [A bag of wheat was expected to be and paid for on the condition it was 3 bushels ie 3 X 60 lbs] I will go further and while fully agreeing with him, I ask why should any farmer have to resort to such tactics? The best thing to do is summons the jute merchant for obtaining money under false pretenses because the farmer orders and pays for a three-bushel bag. He generally receives a two or two and a half one. If a baker sells a loaf of bread one-ounce short weigh he is fined 10 pounds ($20.00). What applies to him ought to apply to all vendors. Though the “cocky” has been a target to be shot at by everyone for years, as sure as bad eggs make good bombs, he will wake up and get his own back.
I don’t know whether this rumor can be verified, but it is said that the Mullewa Roads Board are going to borrow 3000 pounds ($6,000.00): declare Mullewa a Municipality, pull down the barn they use for functions, erect an up to date Town Hall, install electric lights in the town, let the present offices [out] and it in future make Mullewa what she deserves to be—one of the most progressive and up to date country towns. Yes, the time is now opportune for Dave Warren to don the Mayoral robes.

March 19th 1927

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

We had over four inches of rain (100 mm) in two days, the creek came down a banker, and a portion of the Bindu Road was washed away at a point where the Public Works gang tried to deviate a chain wide (20 metres) stream into a six foot cutting on a turn, a piece of smart engineering and a waste of money. A motor came to grief in this washaway and stayed there for two days. It is on the main Geraldton-Mullewa road and other motors would have been held up only Mr. Stafford opened his fence and allowed them to go through that way. [Records show that Tenindewa had almost 150 mm for March of that year; 6 inches in the old scale]
It is raining again today and looks like continuing. It is holding up a lot of clearing work.
Still another tractor has arrived. Messrs. Rumble Brothers having received a Case.
One of our bachelors have found a wife, Mr. Alec Butler recently being married in Perth to one of our one time school girls. We wish them ever health and happiness: they deserve it. [Alec married Miss Olive Stone]
Mr. Stafford has just had a well completed 74 feet deep (25 metres) giving a good supply of nearly fresh water. It will carry 2000 sheep or more, and is good for all stock. This is the third well he has found on his property.
Tractors will revolutionize scrub rolling and farming around here. They do very satisfactory work, and quickly.
We put in 30,000 bags of wheat to our siding the past season and i guess it will be much larger next if it is fair season, as much new ground is cleared.




August 2nd 1927

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

I am sitting down writing these few notes (mostly about the cockie, of course), I can hear the birds joyously singing hailing the new day, after rain. The butcher and the magpie are the best singers with no charge to hear them. It is one of the compensations for living wild and woolly life in the mulga. Still, there are others. For instance, the pleasure in seeing new ground turned over with nice brown folds and sweet earthy scent, and then to know we shall some day return to this good old mother soil. What could be better I would sooner do that than play the harp all the time. I have no care for music. If it was all birds, flowers and fields with little of Kelly thrown in, I would not mind such a heaven.
Things such as wheat crops and stock are looking remarkably well and wholesome, and a real good foundation is already laid for an abundant wheat yield, hence plenty of spending silver for cockie and a good time for business people, especially the bane of a farmer’s life—the machinery agent.
There are lots of talk of more tractors. Where one farmer (or fool) leads there is always another, so the tractors will come, and after the tractor the experience, the language, etc
Bindu School held a social and dance last Saturday evening. It was largely attended, and most enjoyable evening spent, and about 5 pounds [$10.00] was raised to purchase a basket ball set for the school. I understand a number of schools have been challenged to a game, and Geraldton in particular. I’ll put my bit on Bindu. They are fine kids. The teacher is Miss Costello, who is a real live wire, and comes here with a good reputation as a teacher and sport, and I’m inclined to think the boys believe she is very nice. Do do I.
The wild flowers are early this year and looking very nice.

October 15th October 1927

Geraldton Guardian
From our own Correspondent)

There has been a lot of talk about rust in the wheat this season. I have been around a few crops about Tenindewa and there may be a trace on the flag, but nothing to hurt. Along the Wongan line it looks okay. Other crops don’t look as good as around this part. I saw Mr. A.E. Benoit’s crop a few days since, and it looks good enough to go nine or ten bags to the acre [2 tonne per hectare]
Merredin variety will be ready to strip in about 10 days, and should yield very well. I anticipate a record harvest around Tenindewa.
A number of farmers are asking why Superphosphate Works are not built at Geraldton to supply the wonderful Victoria District with wheat manure. This would enable the railway department to deliver it in time and save an awful lot of truck mileage, and would make it possible for railways to handle the traffic decently. If super is to be stacked for a couple of months it becomes hard and costs pounds to fine it up again and it does not drill evenly.
Another question we are asking is why our wool still has to go to Perth to be sold. This extensive district produces enough wool to bring the buyers to Geraldton. It is the policy of the present Government to decentralize, so they should move on this. It would save a lot of haulage by trains and give a lot more labour in Geraldton and make it the City it should be. Wake up Geraldton! You have more time than the Cockie to battle the thing through.
I wonder would the Commissioner for Railways consider the matter of a flat rate for fire-wood, say between Northern Gully and Mullewa to Geraldton. If this was done, hundreds of tons of the best firewood could be sent from this district to warm the hearts of old Geraldton. It could be carried at railway convenience. Now Geraldton, play less bowls and see to these things please.
A social and dance was held at the Tenindewa School last Saturday and was a good success, the proceeds being for a Christmas Tree for the kiddies.
If train passengers want a feed they should not go Wongan line way at holiday times. One car on to feed many passengers and I got my tea at supper time. You want real patience on that train and be sure to take a belt with you so that can take a hole up after each waiting hour.


October 19th 1927

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)

Huge Areas And Forty Bushel Crops

This part of the world will soon be starting to gather its contribution of bags of wheat towards the prophesied yield of 35,000,000 bushels for Western Australia this season, and believe me, our consignments will be greatly appreciated by the Agricultural Department. I don’t know whether you are aware that Ogilvie, per medium of the “Primary Producer” threw out a challenge to any other district to produce more wheat than they for the next three years. Yes, they did, and when I read it to some of our farmers, six of them broke their legs in the scramble to get to the telephone first to accept it. Anyhow, Mr. W.H. Stokes duly fixed up the competition so you can save your sympathy for Ogilvie. It’s a cake walk for us.
We were thinking, though, that it would be mean or unfair of us if we took advantage of Ogilvie should they be troubled with Red Rust, as we hear the pest is floating around, and we won’t close on Ogilvie’s deposit should they wish to withdraw. We are not trying to “put the wind up anyone”, but we have some magnificent looking crops. Mr. McGregor, of Menang and the consistent Mr. Tom Couper have crops which to look at will yield (bar any diseases stepping in) 40 bushels to the acre. (2.6 tonne per hectare)
As for oats. the Minister for Agriculture [Mr. M. F. Troy of Indarra] has the best crop, as one farmer said, in the world. Not personally known [to me] Mr. Ulrich, (sic) our new settler, irrespective of any adverse comment, I must say he must be a good asset to this country. He has in crop this year 3,000 acres (1200 hectares) has cleared 2,000 acres (800 hectares), and at present time has five machines, three tractors and two horse teams peeling off his grain. To my mind, everything is going well, in three years’ time Mr. Liebe will be running second.
Another new settler stirring things up around here is Mr. Jack Major, who has 800 acres (320 hectares) of crop this year and contemplates putting in 1,200 (480 hectares) next year. He has just taken delivery of a Case tractor, with which he intends to take his crops off, then roll the county down for miles. We old drones will have to be injected with monkey glands if we want to keep pace with this sort of individual. Most certainly there are any amount of old settlers with large areas under crop, so understand I am not quoting the above two in sarcasm, but only crediting them for their energetic work.

I have read where exception has taken to the “cocky” driving in a motor car. Why shouldn’t he? Is he not entitled to it? Mr. Editor, a motor car to a “cocky” is part of the equipment of his farm, and saves him no end of time in running to the siding instead of taking the old dray. Listen! I will wager there are more motor cars owned by the parasites who live by the sweat of the “cocky” than owned by the “cockies”.
I have also read where Mr. Sutton said that the Red Rust that was appearing this year was not harmful, and further more, that Nabawah wheat resisted it. I am game enough to say he is absolutely wrong in both cases.
We have a farmer in our midst who is curst or blessed with wild radishes. Whether they are a pest or an asset is open is an open question with him, for this reason. Last March 600 hungry sheep were brought from Geraldton, grazed on 100 acres (40 hectares) of radishy ground,and in September, when they were sent to Midland Junction, they topped the market. On Kurrajong’s (“Sunday Times” writer) assertion, and he is the best agricultural authority in W.A., land that will carry one sheep to the acre is worth 5 pounds ($ 10.00) per acre. The radishes are carrying six [sheep per acre] for a certain period. Silos would help through the dry period. Mr. Stafford has put another 600 into the same paddock, and as these don’t look like they have been fed on strawberries and cream, it will be interesting to note their condition after the radishes blow their bags out.
Mr. Dan and Jerimiah Kemp* are jubilant over locating a good supply of fresh water on their Bindu farm, after recent failures of many other triers.

[This well was eventually lead the tragic demise of Dan]


Mussolini, the Italian statesman, has not decided which one of four farmers at Tenindewa to appoint Italian Consul, as the whole four merit the position for the way they have studied the welfare of their country.
Tenindewa shortly is going to declare a day’s holiday. Shops, post office etc. will be closed as Mr. W. Griffiths, our local shopkeeper is to be married. As Billie, as he is well known, is one of the popular men in the district. I am sure everyone will end him best wishes for his future happiness.

February 16th 1928

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Harvest is finished and I dont think there are many who were not short of their estimated yield.
The Bindu School has commenced operations again but it is very much regretted some of the scholars have not returned from their holidays, which will probably mean the school will be closed down.
Messrs Helan Bros, of Mittajong farm, sustained a bad loss last Sunday week, owing to a bush fire burning their homestead, seed wheat, wheat bags etc. The place was not insured. [This property was one of two properties formally owned by H.J. Stafford]
Bush fires are going in all directions, and more areas are being got ready for wheat. The cost of production is far too great and must come down if farmers are to make anything out of it.
The Vermin Board have bestirred themselves at last and have ordered Cockies to clean up all of the rabbits within 7 days. It took bunny more than 7 days to spread. Some have laid poison and sheep, cats and numerous birds are being destroyed. A number of valuable birds such as plovers, magpies, butcher birds will be destroyed and this will mean other plagues like they have in the Eastern States at times, where birds have been killed off. Further if foxes cannot get rabbits they will play havoc among the lambs in winter.
A good number of residents journeyed by Sunday’s excursion [train] from Mullewa and most of them returned very much refreshed and pleased with the day at the seaside.

July 20th 1928

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)
Note; Another clue to the author “our own Correspondent”……suggest he has been there since 1909.

Rain galore, and the townspeople are all smiling, because there is a chance of cocky having plenty of spending silver in a few months. The crops around Tenindewa never looked better during the past 19 years to my knowledge, and Tenindewa Siding expects to shift 60,000 bags [5000 tonne] of wheat this coming harvest. Many new settlers have fair sized areas of wheat on and there is not now one vacant block of ground between Tenindewa and the Greenough River (17 miles distant) [28 kilometers]. New settlers have a much better chance than the old pioneers had, with trucks, tractors and no long distance water carting, A few crops I have seen are Messrs. Benoit, Smith and Dunkin and they look all that could be desired.
At a meeting of the Primary Producers Association it was decided to put a cart weighbridge at Tenindewa Siding to weigh the coming harvest and expedite delivery, otherwise there will be so much delay to cockies. It kept the lumpers and others busy last season with 45,000 bags. [3750] tonne
An enjoyable social and dance was held at Bindu school last Saturday and many attended and went away well pleased.

August 2nd 1928

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

Hot, hot as Hades, dogs panting, fowls’ wings spread in moist places, cows under shady trees, while I. the lord of all, working like a gally slave in Ben Hur. This is some what of a picture, but too true; ; thermometer at 80 [30 degrees Celsius] in the cool room, and only August 2nd. Who can tell what the harvest will be? Crops are looking beautiful so far, water is plentiful and stock are lying around in the paddocks a good part of the day quite comfortable.
The wild flowers are showing their pretty heads above the grass and make a very pleasing sight, white, pink and yellow. If we could only take a life like color-photo of these beauties at this time of year it would be very refreshing to look at it in the summer when the thermometer stands at 100 [38 degrees Celsius]
Fallowing is going on all around this district, ready to help the Royal Harvest for 1929.
A buyer of stock from the Midland line has been touring the district and has cleaned up a large number of sheep and cattle. It is coming on our bad time for flies. They are a pest to be reckoned with, and from now on flocks will require almost daily attention. Possibly that is why some parted with sheep in the wool.
It is fairly hard to get blade shearers, and when the work gets mixed up with hay cutting, it is a nuisance.
Mr. R Dunkin was recently elected as a member of the Mullewa Roads Board for the West Ward. He is showing a deal of energy in his duties. There is no pay attached to the job but a fair amount of outlay. I wonder why Board members are not paid like our M.P’s. Its the same thing on a more moderate scale.
Old Ben is very perky over his crops this year and expects to strip over 4000 bags. [340 tonne]

October 18th 1928

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

The weather is warming up and stripping will shortly be in full swing and Tenindewa (the most favored of all places) will supply its full quota of the golden grain. The only thing needed now is 20 shillings a bag for wheat [$24.00 per tonne]. I’m not worrying about the poor man’s loaf; its the taxation and interest charges the wheat has to pay that is worrying me. Last week 32,000 wheat bags arrives at Tenindewa in one lot and many thousands prior to that. I think its the largest we have seen so far. I would call it a record, still it wont hold long; next year will break it. Oats are being stripped and are turning out well and the price is quite fair, about 4 shillings and sixpence a bushel. [$20.00 per tonne]
We can do without more rain as crops will be ready, in a week or ten days in most cases, to strip.
Stock are looking well and feed is plentiful, as also is water, most of the farmers having good wells.
Murchison graziers are looking for paddocks to run their breeders in; evidently things are not too good there.
On Wednesday the largest sheep sale ever held in Mullewa will take place—-25,000 of them—I understand many will come here, and also there are 1000 cattle to be sold on the same day.
Plenty of new harvest machinery is coming here and passing further along, which is good for manufacturers.
Emus and ‘roos [sic] are bad this season and the outside settlers are getting a bit of what the old settlers had to stand. They could be easily cleaned up if the farmers would combine and have a big drive, but alas! farmers are the hardest men alive to get united on anything.
Some crops will hardly be worth stripping owning to damage done by pests.
Good horsemen make the best air-pilots, but expert racing motorists do not excel as airmen.
About 40,000 school boys and girls made holiday trips this year under the School Journey Association. There are now 1,300 schools, scattered all over the British Empire and Continent, in the movement.
Trained rat-catchers who work on ships in London docks must be able to estimate the number or rats in the ship before beginning their work of extermination. The figure is later checked by the number of rats found.
The consumption of tin has increased enormously with the popularity of silk and artificial silk. Ten years ago British silk companies were using 800 tons of tin a year; now they are using 8,000 tons —for weighing and dyeing purposes.

October 24th 1928

Tenindewa Notes (From our Correspondent)

Sir, –Unfortunately, owing to and old war injuries, I have had to be an inmate of the Repatriation Ward of the Perth Hospital—hence no news from me for the “Express” for this great wheat district to which I belong.
Honestly, without doubt, the Victoria District, will easily top the poll for wheat production this year. Forty million bushels (1.200,000 tonne) were predicted as WA’s yield, but to my mind we will be lucky to see half, for though around here we have splendid crops on fallow and with early wheats, those farmers with new land, and those growing wheats as Yandilla King or any of the late varieties will be lucky if they get enough for seed.
It is one of the worst wheat growing seasons known–no rain worth speaking about in September, and I have not see one crop that has not suffered from scorching.
I am not wailing, for all the crying in the world will not alter things, but what is the good of telling a pack of lies when the truth proves the contrary.
Wheat growing and wheat returns are a farmers business, and the bank, a place from which he draws his “wages” once a year (and I am sure everyone likes to know he is rewarded for his worry, etc, that once), but unfortunately I am sorry to say there are many that will miss this year.

What Others Think
Around here we have had visitors from Southern Cross, Gutha, Three Springs and Gingin, and every one of them has agreed that none of their districts could compare with ours.
Mr. McGregor, of Menang, was asked by Mr. Edgar of Gingin, to show him something good in wheat production. “Mac”, only too pleased drove him around 800 acres (320 hectares) which will in places go ten bags (2 tonne per hectare) easily but taking it on the whole, good, bad and indifferent Mr. McGregor will harvest on average 7 bags to the acre (1.5 tonne per hectare)
Messrs. Thomas Bros, Couper and Peet of Ardingly, have also got splendid crops, and the settlers of Devils Creek and Mendal Estate, though of course wanting more rain, will harvest good crops.
Mr. J.J Smith has caused a bit of a stir among “professional” wheat growers by growing a wonderful crop of wheat at his farm in Bindu and defying all the shrewd head to identifying the wheat, which is an early variety which is showing heads of 9 inches long. (20 cms) He bought the seed from Kemp Bros, who claim to have originated it, whether they did or not will soon be known, for Mr. Stokes has been sending samples to the Agricultural Department and as they are putting the acid test on it, we will soon know whether it is mundice or pure gold grain.
I read in the papers where the P.P.A. were agitating for Italians. Just what I expected. They would just be the right sort to leave to protect their (not mine) wives and children should the outbreak of another war occur. Splendid propaganda for them for the next election, and here’s one who wont forget it.

The Elections–And an Opponent for Mr. Kennedy
Talking about elections, my old friend Mr. H. J. Stafford is going to step into the ring an try and box Mr. M.J. Kennedy out of the constituency. “Staff” is going to nominate as a C.P. (Country Party).
I am not going to say good luck to him, for though he is a friend of mine, the present government will do me, for I consider it is the best and most progressive we have ever had.
Put Squandering Jimmy back in power, and being so optimistic, he might float a loan of six millions and turn the Geraldton Harbor into a skating rink, and though, like the group settlements, this might take 100 years, as I wont live that long, I will stick to *Morrie Kennedy for my politics.
Note; *Maurice Kennedy was the member for Greenough from 1924 to 1930

A Fine new House
You have often heard of that old rhyme “This is the house that Jack built”. Well, you will want to see the house that Nat built at Tenindewa–absolutely out on its own. Its a mansion built of cement bricks, and costing in the neighborhood of 2000 pounds ($4,000) for Mr. Nat Rumble, who is to be married shortly believes that now he he has caught his canary, he should cage it worthily. Furthermore, it plainly shows that he has implicit faith in Tenindewa.


Show train Service
Here is a boost from here for you Geraldton people to share amongst you. Why, at show time don’t you cater for us county folk to attend the Geraldton Show. We don’t all own cars, and at this particular time your train service is up to mud, for it meant stopping in two days in Geraldton to enjoy a one day show. Many of us farmers with families would be only too pleased to attend if there were special trains run, such as at sea side excursions, railway picnics, etc. Mr. A Meadowcroft, read, mark, learn, chew and digest this.

It is very possible that the person involved here under (From our correspondent) is Tom Moore

November 1st 1928

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)

(This is a most important article in getting an understanding of who the writer/s was/were and who he wasn’t)
1 As he openly disagrees with the former article, it clearly shows that “Our Own Correspondent” and “Our Correspondent” are definitely not, one and the same person
2 The highlighted piece below goes a long way to telling us who the writer is.

I noticed in the Tenindewa “express” correspondents’ notes, recently remarks about Tenindewa crops, which are not quite correct.
He says ; “Around here we have splendid crops on fallow, and with early wheat; those farmers with new land and those growing such wheat as Yandilla King, or any late variety, will be lucky if they get wheat for seed.”
I would suggest this correspondent has a good look at Mr. Dawkins’ crop, of Benn, and Mr. Benoit’s crop of Yandilla King, and he will then alter his opinion, and this season around here, is far better than last season, and the crops are full of wheat.
If he could have a look at Mr. Major’s crop, Mr. W. Brenkley’s and go further out [to[, Messrs. Broderick and Adams, he would see some good results. Also regarding new ground, the writer can show one of the best crops in the district (not exceeding fallow) on new ground. Moreover, I can show some wheat grown on new land as late as June 21, and it is well headed and full of wheat, and will grow [sic] well.
This particular part is specially favorable for wheat, and other grain growing. It is not too close to the coast to be affected by rust, and not too far inland, to get storms too early. We are sure of reasonable rains, and the land is nice red loam, in most cases, which takes moisture freely and gives it off to the plants. I am a pioneer farmer on [sic] this area and have learned a little during the past 20 years and have much more to learn. Wheat is a wonderful plant, and a wonderful study. Tenindewa is as good a place as the next place to grow average crops of sound wheat, and this year will be a record for our siding, so I hope those responsible for the handling of the same will be prepared.

November 15th 1928

Tenindewa Notes (from our own Correspondent)
This is possibly the last article written for the “Express” and about Tenindewa by Leo Critch.

The golden grain is being gathered rapidly, and is turning out much better than expected, and a long way ahead of last year. Some of the yields are Mr. R. V. Oldham, about nine bags; Mr. H J Stafford, on new ground, over seven bags, with that good wheat Merredin. Others around are panning out equally as well. The Cockies are that busy they have not even time to attend church or a race meeting, not even time to have a bit [sic] on the Melbourne Cup
My estimate of 60,000 bags of wheat [5000 tonne] for Tenindewa this harvest, I think will be exceeded. So perhaps the cockies after they have paid their debts, will “have a bit of spending silver” and may even buy a second hand motor car.
The buying agents are all busy trying to get big stacks for Geraldton, but as the price is pretty low, farmers are not selling freely.
They say the Bindu State School is being closed owing to non-attendance of scholars. It is a great pity, for once it is closed it will be hard to reopen.
A few residents patronized the special excursion train on Sunday last, and visited Geraldton

January 3rd 1929

Tenindewa Notes (From our own Correspondent)
This is possibly the last article written for the “Express” and about Tenindewa by Leo Critch.

The farmers are nearly all finished harvesting and the results are good judging by their pleasant dials. A few stragglers have to finish yet; I suppose some must be last.
The Bindu school held its Christmas tree and it was a great success. About 20 pounds was collected and every child received a gift. The teacher and others worked hard and deserve credit.
Large stacks of wheat are at Tenindewa and Indarra. The Railway Department appear to have difficulty in supplying trucks to shift it. I should think it would pay to keep special trains running day and night at 3 pence per bushel freight [$1.20 per tonne], with no handling or sheetage. Apparently there is delay in Geraldton discharging trucks. It would be interesting to trace the movement of a few trucks for a fortnight to see if delay cannot be averted. I know trucks lie in Tenindewa siding for days. *
Farmers are not selling [wheat] freely as they consider the prices too low.
Feed and water are plentiful and stock are looking good

* Clearly the author lives in proximity to the siding. Leo Critch’s shack was about 1.5 kilometres north west of the siding.

June 12th 1942

Tenindewa Notes (No hint of a Correspondent)

Holidaying in Tenindewa is Mr. H. J Stafford who is visiting members of his family, looks the picture of health in spite of his 77 years and seems as young as ever. Mr. Stafford retired from active farming pursuits in this district three years ago and has retired to his little orchard property in the hills near Mundaring.
Dave Bell paid a brief visit to see his parents, prior to him being drafted with the armed forces in the defense of Australia.
Other members of the forces on leave are Private Dick Dunkin, who is helping his dad with the seeding operation and Corporal Robbie Weir, who is doing some good work down Eradu way. Did someone say the wedding bells were being polished up?
Many fond farewells and good wishes have been extended to Mr. and Mrs. George Elliott, who having retired and are taking up residence in or close to Perth, so are near to the family. Mr. Elliott was the local Australian Bank inspector who was well and favorably received by all. The district regrets having to part with such genial people. (Their many friends in the Mullewa district also extend very best wishes to Mr. and Mrs. Elliott.)

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