Dunrobin Hall on Dunrobin Estate 1914
Casterton, S-W Victoria, Australia
Glenelg & Wannon Region, S-W Victoria, Australia

DUNROBIN HALL CENTENARY
Saturday 16th & Sunday 17th August 2014

"The Register" (Adelaide, SA) Tuesday, 27th May 1913.
SOUTH-EASTERN BORDER, May 26. -- At a meeting of Dunrobin residents last week it was decided to build a public hall at the settlement. Mr. J. Hart reported that the Closer Settlement Board had promised to give as a site any one of seven vacant township blocks that residents might select. A sum of 50 was raised at once, and a loan of 100 has been arranged with the bank, so that the erection of the hall will proceed, without further delay.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 26th January 1914.
Dunrobin "township," though in the making, and though "township lots" have been thoughtfully provided by the Closer Settlement Board, cannot as yet be said to have come into existence. With a church erected, however a State school to be completed within a few weeks, and a Public Hall that will probably be started next week, Dunrobin will have the nucleus of a township well equipped front the start with buildings provided for public accommodation. The tender of Norman McLean for erection of the Public Hall at 260 has been accepted. It is expected that the contractor will make a start with the work before the end of next week.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Thursday, 29th January 1914.
Dunrobin Public Hall. --- At a meeting held at the "Homestead," on Friday last, it was agreed to ask all who are willing to assist in carting blocks for the hall to meet at Mr Widdicombe's property on Wednesday next, February 4th, to facilitate the contractor (Mr N. McLean) completing erection of the hall as speedily as possible. Mr. W. Killeen has been appointed by the Hall committee to supervise the work on their behalf.
The Dunrobin ladies have arranged to hold a fete at Mr Gravestocks' on Wednesday, February 18, in order to supplement the Hall Building Fund.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 1st June 1914.
Dunrobin Hall. --- After dealing with the closer settlement question (referred to elsewhere in this issue), those present at the Dunrobin School on Friday night considered a letter from Mr. W. Peden contractor for erection of the hall, who pointed out the delay in starting the work was in no way due to neglect on his part, but solely to the fact that he had not been able to obtain the required timber. The timber was now on hand, and he would be a start on Monday (today) if arrangements for carting it out by that time could be made.
Mr. Thomas Ley undertook to cart out the first load next day (Saturday last).


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 6th July 1914.
Dunrobin Mechanics' Hall. --- A largely attended meeting of persons interested in the above was held in the Dunrobin School on Thursday evening last. In the absence of Cr Widdicombe (who was attending the Farmers' Convention at Maryborough), Mr Jno. Murphy occupied the chair.
The Chairman in opening the proceedings, expressed pleasure at seeing so representative a gathering and commended the interest shown towards the cause. He said that in all probability the building would be completed within about three weeks' time. He invited discussion regarding the form which the opening should take. On the motion of Mr C. G. Appelt, seconded by Mr E. Ley, it was agreed to hold a grand concert and ball the opening night the exact date to be fixed by the Committee.
I dealing with the matter of finance, the chairman urged on the meeting the necessity of making early effort to substantially increase the funds already in hand, and asked the collectors to secure all promised donations as soon as possible.
Correspondence from several music warehouses was read, and the meeting favored the getting of a piano, leaving the matter of purchase in the hands of the committee. Arrangements were also made for the cartage of timber still required.

A Social and Dance, in aid of fund to provide a piano for Dunrobin Hall, is to be held in Mr Gravestock's Barn on Friday night next, July 10.



"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 10th August 1914.
Dunrobin. --- At a meeting of ladies interested in the local Mechanics' Institute, it was agreed that the Settlement ladies undertake the catering for the opening concert, which is to be held in the Hall, on Friday next, August 14. It was intimated that assistance from ladies who were unable to attend the meeting on Friday last, would he much appreciated, as it in expected there will be a big crowd at the concert, and a heavy tax on the supper tables.
The opening of the new Dunrobin Hall is to he celebrated with a Concert and Ball on Friday night next, August 14.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Thursday, 20th August 1914.
Mechanics' Hall, Dunrobin. --- Opened by Shire President. --- A Successful Function.
The Dunrobin Mechanics' Institute Hall, a well designed and spacious building (erected by Mr W. J. Peden, under the supervision of Mr W. Killeen), was officially opened on Friday night, August 14th, by Cr J. Ross, President of the Glenelg Shire, who presided. Crs. Widdicombe and Abbott were also present.
The Chairman in his opening speech expressed great pleasure at being present at the opening of the Institute, remarking that he had always felt a special strong "paternal" interest in the welfare of Dunrobin. He congratulated the residents on their fine building, and the excellent attendance that evening, and hoped that this would be the forerunner of many such social foregatherings of the Dunrobin people and their neighbours. He would always be ready to assist Dunrobin in either his private or public capacity. Cr Ross made feeling reference to the great European struggle at arms, expressing the hope that the British Empire would emerge from the conflict with honor. (Cheers.) He then declared the Mechanics' Institute open, and asked all to sing the National Anthem, a request to which the audience responded with great warmth.
A concert programme, which had been arranged by a selected committee, was then proceeded with and included :-- Overture piano, Mr Reg. Hart ; song, "The Lowland Sea," (enc.) "Dear Little Shamrock," Mr D. Morgan ; Monologue, "A Brilliant Speech," Miss Lottie Foster (enc.) ; song, "The Deathless Army," Mr C. G. Appelt (enc., "Let me like a soldier fall") ; song, "The Widow Machree," Miss K. Kent (enc., "Jessie's Dream") ; violin solo, "Gavotte in G," Mr Reg Hart ; song (selected) Mr J. Neeson ; song, "The man behind the gun," Miss Hilda Lane (enc.) ; Hornpipe, Miss Galpin ; recitation, Man from Snowy River," Mr R. H. Bear ; song, "Mission of a Rose," Mrs Hart ; song, "A Romany Lass," Rev. C. H. Chalmers ; song, "The magic of love," Miss Lamborne ; highland fling, Miss Galpin ; song, "Life's Consolation," Miss K. Kent ; song, "The Village Blacksmith," Mr C. G. Appelt ; humourous song, "Mrs McFarlane," Mr E. J. Ley.
Accompaniments were played by Mrs E. J. Black, Misses Kent, Lane, Hart, and Lamborne and Mr Reg Hart, while Mr Spurrell supplied pipe music for the fancy dancing.
Mr Jas. Hart, on behalf of the Committee, moved a hearty vote of thanks to Cr Ross, and also to the performers for their assistance, and the vote, seconded by Cr Widdicombe, was carried with acclamation.
The hall was then cleared for a ball, and was taxed to its utmost capacity to hold the large crowd.
A first class supper provided by the Dunrobin ladies was handed round about midnight and excellent music was provided, free of cost, by Mr Reg Hart (piano), and Mr W. Scott (violin), Mrs Black, Misses Kent and Gilbo also assisted at the piano.
It was gratifying to both builders and committee to hear comments on all sides as to the excellence of the floor. The takings for the night amounted to 25.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 14th September 1914.
The Dairy Expert of the Department of Agriculture will lecture under the auspices of the Casterton P. and A. Society at the Casterton Mechanics' Hall, to-night (Monday), September 14. The subject will be "Pig Breeding and Management." At the Dunrobin Hall, on Wednesday night next, September 16, Mr T. A. J. Smith, Chief Field Officer of the Department of Agriculture will lecture under the auspices of the Casterton P. and A. Society on "The Management of the Farm."


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Thursday, 17th September 1914.
Glenelg Shire Council. THIS DAY. Present--The President (Cr. J. Ross), Crs F. W. Abbott, D. Boyle, T. Carmichael, L. Koch, J. Little, A. Mitchell, G. Northcott, L. O'Connell, A. Rees, and J. W. Widdicombe.
General. -- E. J. Ley, Hon. Sec'y, Dunrobin Mechanics' Hall, asked permission to retain two gate lamps borrowed from the Council. On the motion of Cr Carmichael and Rees the two lamps were donated for use at the Hall.


"The Argus" (Melbourne, Vic.) Tuesday, 22nd September 1914.
CASTERTON. -- A lecture was delivered on Saturday night at Dunrobin by Mr. T. A. J. Smith, of the Department of Agriculture, on "The Management of the Farm." Mr. J. W. Widdecombe president of the Casterton Pastoral and Agricultural Society, under whose auspices the lecture was given, occupied the chair. There was a good attendance of farmers.
The Rev. Karl Forster, who has been minister of Scots Church, Casterton, for five years, has been given a call to Scots Church, Sydney. It is likely he will accept it. Mr. Forster is to represent the Hamilton Presbytery at the biennial meeting of the Presbyterian General Assembly of Australia.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 5th October 1914.
Dunrobin Festivities. ---- The handsome new hall at Dunrobin presented an exceptionally brilliant scene on the occasion of a Plain and Fancy Dress Ball given in aid of the Building Fund on Friday evening last. Mr. E. J. Ley acted as M.C., and music was supplied by Mrs E. J. Black, Messrs R. Hart, H. Bond and W. Scott. The dresses were exceedingly handsome and becoming, the music excellent, the floor in splendid order, and with a big crowd in attendance, a most enjoyable evening was spent by all present. Prizes for best fancy dress respectively lady and gentleman were awarded to Miss A. Hardy (Spanish Dancing Girl) and Mr F. Widdicombe (Jack Tar). The Characters represented were as follows :--Misses I. M'Calman (Flower Girl), A. Donohue (Evening), E. Hart (Cinderella), A. Hardy (Spanish Dancing Girl), O. Tuffnell (Red Hiding Hood), A. Tuffnell (Red Poppy), B. Williams (Irish Colleen), A. Beddell (Martial), A. Nicholls (Quaker Girl), A. Lee (Wind), M. Hart (Dawn), K. Williams (Quaker Girl), V. Diener (American Cow Girl), M. Doyle (Harper's Oatmeal), E. Galpin (Good Luck), L. Hardy (Tennis Girl), Mrs A. M'Calman (Union Jack), Messrs F. Widdicombe (Jack Tar) J. Lane (Coon), D. Ley (Huntsman), H. Spurrell (Gordon Highlander).


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 19th October 1914.
At the Council Table. -- Notes and Comments. -- The Council had a soft thing on in earning the gratitude of the Dunrobin Mechanics' Committee--expressed in a letter from the hon. sec'y, Mr E. J. Ley--by donating a couple of the old street lamps that formerly assisted "to make darkness visible" at Casterton, but now, since we are above such makeshifts--thanks to the electric light--the said lamps were of no use here, though "just the thing" for use in front of district institutions situated on roads that are very dark on cloudy nights. If the Council has any more of these lamps, obsolete and useless for town lighting purposes, Councillors might earn more gratitude by distributing them as far as they will go among the managers of district buildings used for entertainment, where the light that can be shown from them would be much appreciated by folk, nearly all of whom have to drive considerable distances to contribute by their cash and attendance towards local funds for public or other charitable purposes, that are raised through concerts, dances, etc.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 2nd November 1914.
Dunrobin. --- A well attended meeting of land-holders on the Dunrobin settlement was held in the Mechanics' Institute on Friday night. The President of the Dunrobin branch of the Closer Settlement Association, Mr. A. McCalman, occupied the chair. The object of the meeting was to consider the best means of securing some measure of relief from the Closer Settlement Board in the current time of drought and hardship which the settlers are going through. After discussion, it was agreed on the motion of Mr. McGrath and Mr. C. Ley that a deputation from Dunrobin wait upon the Closer Settlement Board and ask that payment of the rent be deferred. Messrs Jas. Hart, Geoff. McGrath, and Jas. Murray were selected to interview the Board, the deputation to leave for Melbourne on Monday morning. The following officers of the Dunrobin branch of the Closer Settlement Association for the coming year were elected :-- President, Mr Geoffrey McGrath ; Vice President, Mr A. McCalman ; Hon. Sec. and Tres., Mr Jas. Hart.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 23rd November 1914.
The Sale of Gifts in aid of the Dunrobin Presbyterian Church Building Fund takes place at the Dunrobin Hall, on Wednesday night next, November 25, when the ladies will have on view a fine display of useful and beautiful articles, and there will be all sorts of other attractions.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Thursday, 26th November 1914.
Sale of Gifts. --- The ladies of the Dunrobin Presbyterian congregation had a fine display of useful and beautiful articles and otherwise an attractive and entertaining programme at the Dunrobin Hall last night, when a Sale of Gifts in aid of the Building Fund of the church was held. There was a full attendance of district people and visitors, with such satisfactory result, that the promoters had the satisfaction of adding about 20 to the Fund. The Sale was opened by the Rev. Kaal Forster, M.A., who congratulated the promoters on their fine display, and expressed appreciation of the interest, energy and industry of all concerned and thanks to all who had assisted in helping to defray the cost of the church building.
Stalls and stallholders were as follows :--Fancy Stall, Mesdames M'Intyre and, Munro ; Produce Stall, Mesdames McLeod and Hodgetts ; Lolly Stall, Miss Brens ; Soft Drinks Stall, Miss Biddell ; Refreshments Stall, Mrs M'Calman ; Fish Pond, Miss Ley ; Book Stall, Miss McCombe ; Shooting Gallery, Mr Munro ; Electric Battery, Mr Lamont ; Doorkeeper, Mr M'Millan.
Winners of naildriving competitions :-- Ladies--(Unmarried).-Miss M'Calman 1, Miss Biddell 2. (Married)--Mrs Hunn 1, Mrs T. Ley. Gentlemen--(Single)--Mr T. Robinson 1, Mr H. Lear 2. (Married)--Mr. K. Forster 1, Mr M'Millan 2. During the evening the following musical items, were given :-- Glee by members of Scots Church choir ; song, "Australia by the Sea," Mrs Chittick ; song, "Wait at the Gate," Mr W. C. Dunne ; song, "Two Eyes of Grey," Miss M. Stewart ; song, "Davey Jones," Mr J. Hammerton.


"The Casterton News" (Vic.) Monday, 21st December 1914.
Valedictory Social. --- There was a great gathering at the Mechanics' Institute, Dunrobin, on Wednesday evening last to bid farewell and show appreciation of Mr. C. G. Appelt, the first and very popular teacher at the Dunrobin State School, who has been promoted, and transferred to the Central State School, Ballarat. Representatives were present from Casterton, Wando Vale, and Dergholm.
Cr. Rees, who presided, spoke in terms of regret at the loss Dunrobin would sustain in the departure of such in valued teacher, loved by his pupils, and widely respected by the parents and all residents of the district.
His remarks were fully endorsed by Mr James Hart, correspondent of the School Committee. Cr. Widdicombe, as president of the Mechanics' Institute, of which Mr Appelt was treasurer, spoke of the well-earned popularity of Mr Appelt, and also of the grave effect his departure would have on the advance of the Institute, and on the social life at Dunrobin generally ; but he hoped that the step their guest was taking would prove to his best possible advantage.
Rev. F. Stillwell, R.D., Messrs E. Ley, G. McGrath, and R. H. Bear (head teacher Wando Vale State School) voiced similar expressions of appreciation of Mr Appelt as a teacher and citizen.
Hilda Lane and Eleanor Beddell then, on behalf of the scholars, presented Mr Appelt with a valuable travelling rug and umbrella, as small tokens of the great esteemn in which he is held by all children attending the State School.
Cr Widdicombe then presented Mr Appelt, on behalf of the Mechanics' committee and friends generally, with a handsome writing case and fountain pen, as a token of friendship and appreciation of valued assistance. He wished Mr Appelt the best of health and prosperity in his new surroundings.
Mr Appelt, who was received with applause, said he regretted his departure from the fact that during his stay at Dunrobin he not only had won the good fellowship of the residents, but above all the affection of his scholars, to whom he was much attached. He was fond of his profession, and that was his main reason for accepting the offer of removal to a part where he had more scope and opportunity to exercise his abilities. He thanked the childhren, also the President, for their most kind and valuable gifts, but was unable to find words to express his appreciation to all for their farewell tokens and good wishes. He trusted that the people would be to his successor what they had been to him.
Musical items, which were followed by a hearty supper and dance, were rendered by the Misses Stewart, Lamborne, Edwards, Foster, Lane, and Baxter, Messrs D. W. Morgan, R. H. Bear and the scholars. Dance music was supplied by Mrs E. J. Black, Messrs Neeson Bros., W. Scott, R. Hart, the duties of M.C. being in the capable hands of Mr. E. Ley. Dancing was continued until a late hour, when "Auld Lang Syne" brought to a close a memorable evening to all present.


Back to...

Dunrobin

Casterton & District Historical Society

Casterton Pioneer Names

Information and / or corrections appreciated.

Daryl Povey