Memories of Yamba Through Pictures
If anything exemplifies the Museum’s slogan of “Discover Yamba’s Memories” it is the latest publication, Memories of Yamba Through Pictures by Rob Knight, launched at the Museum on Friday September 5.
The book launch took place after the Annual General Meeting and it was a fitting finale to an extraordinary year of achievement for PYHS. At the launch Rob introduced the book by recalling family trips to Yamba for holidays back in the late 1950s. His description of holiday times in Yamba – the swimming, the fishing, the exploration and the lazing in the sun resonated with the audience. These images were reinforced when Lindal Lucas (née Black) spoke about growing up in Yamba. She had so many anecdotes to share –for instance, she had us in fits of laughter as she described the haircuts available for boys and girls at Jack (affectionately known as “Hacker Jack”) Coonan’s Hairdressing Shop. His shop was on the site of what is now “Osteria Martini” (in an earlier incarnation “Beachwood” and earlier still “Scott, Smith and Sullivan”).
Lindal’s family has lived in Yamba for five generations and she said that, as she was looking at the old photos, she realised that the images in front of her were the very ones her father and grandfather (and earlier) would have seen. “I was looking at them through my grandfather’s eyes,” she said. She predicted that the book would become a real “discussion starter” for older residents, provoking numerous “Remember when…..?” questions and endless reminiscences.
The book itself is a real “then and now” compilation. From its earliest years under the guidance of keen photographers Jean and Arthur Bultitude, PYHS has built up an enviable photographic collection of Yamba as it developed. It was a treasure house for Rob to use for the “then” photos. The “now” photos were largely taken by Rob himself with valuable contributions from our members Debrah Novak and John McNamara. Interestingly, many of the older photographs were from the collection of Osric Notley who took that famous photo of Tommy Walker surfing at Main Beach in 1911 and who we featured in an exhibition “A Click in Time” in January this year.
As you would expect from a surveyor, Memories of Yamba Through Pictures is meticulous in its detail. A double page spread shows the location of the photos (about 220 of them) on a map of the town, and a detailed index makes it easy to find what you’re looking for.
An innovative feature of the book are the QR codes that can be scanned into your mobile device. These codes link into our mobile history tour which can be downloaded from our website: http://www.pyhsmuseum.org.au/historytours/index.htm
At $25 our newest publication is very reasonably priced and would make an ideal gift for all who know and love Yamba and its history. It can be purchased from the Museum or orders can be placed via phone – 6646 1399.
Thanks to PYHS Member, Gary Whale, for this report.