It is human nature to want to leave your mark on the world and there are plenty of opportunities in a new town. Street names and foundation stones for two.
I ask myself why am I drawn to family history, a passion I have had for forty years, a passion aroused by stories of fame (or at least brushes with fame) and fortune (or at least the desire for it). But I am not alone. Genealogy research is a booming business.
A timber railway station at Rylstone is a conundrum. All other stations on the line, large and small, were brick: Piper’s Flat, Ben Bullen, Capertee, Clandulla, Lue, Wallerawang and Mudgee. Most of the public buildings in Rylstone were built of stone.
As I explored the topic of the Wallerawang to Mudgee railway, I kept searching for James Angus, first chairman of the Kandos cement company. We in Kandos have always believed James Angus built the railway. And that he chose the site for the cement works based on his knowledge of resources in the area.
For some commentators things didn't seem quite right. The critics became more vocal: the country was barren, the terrain difficult and costly, the returns would be minimal, it was a white elephant, it favoured the pastoralists at the expense of the taxpayer, it was a Mudgee swindle.
Henbury has survived for ninety years on the sweat of its volunteers.
According to the Mudgee Guardian Kandos Stores had “a distinct air of progressiveness”. Double-fronted, two-story, with overhead balcony and paved entrance, it was built with CCCs locally manufactured ash and cement concrete blocks, 9 inches by 18 inches.
Billiards rooms were men's domain, a place for them to gather, gossip, loiter, play, bet, fight, smoke and scrub up.
I hear the arguments against trees. They drop leaves and branches and sap. They attract noisy birds. They break pavements and pipes. Some of them are weeds. That is the song of the tree-cutter. As you probably guessed, I am a tree-hugger.
A copper industry would add to the industrial impact of Kandos, increase the workforce by 90, grow the town and make it more commercially viable. What’s not to like?
The Greeks in Australia learnt by osmosis that a café was a good way to earn a living and give them financial security – a café, that is, that served Australian cuisine, not Greek.