- Lind, L.J.
- History - general
- RAN Ships
- None noted.
- December 1990 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
This year ended on a sad note. The South Australian Chapter went into recess. Four years were to pass before it was re-established. The cause was difficult to define but it would appear age and sickness had taken their toll of the original convenors of the Chapter. However, two experienced organisers, Mr John Sullivan, a previous Secretary of the Society and Mr Alex Marcus, revived the spirit of the Chapter and today it is stronger than ever.
Our first project in 1982 was the preservation and rebinding of some of the rarer books in our library. A sum of $580 was expended on this important task. Unfortunately, today, there are many more volumes in the library which need attention.
Two further titles were added to the Society’s series of books on the RAN. They were ‘The Fremantle Submarine Base’ by David Creed and ‘Australia’s Colonial Navies’ by Ross Gillett. Both books were an important contribution to Australian Naval History.
Another important contribution was made by Alan Zammitt in a three part biography of his father, Canteen Manager, Jesus Zammitt. Jesus was a legend in the Royal Australian Navy of the 1930s and 1940s. The articles were printed in the Naval Historical Review.
In 1982 the first Honorary Legal Officer was appointed to the Society. She was my niece, Barrister Jenny Farrell, who was to guide the Society along the tortuous paths of incorporation.
A great rapport existed between the Society and the Chapters in that year. The Presidents of the Chapters were Mr Bob Johnston, ACT and Mr Doug Robertson, Victoria.
There were a number of changes in the 1983 Committee. Mrs Alsop was replaced by Petty Officer Kevin Malony as Secretary and three new faces appeared as Committeemen. They were Lieutenant Joe Straczek, RAN, Mr Trevor Weaver and Mr Jim Rouse.
From a perusal of the business papers I discovered that I delivered the address at our September meeting. The address was ‘The Land and Sea Battle for Crete’. In addition to sixty-five Society members there was a large contingent of Army visitors present. These included General Murchison, Brigadier McCarthy, representatives of 6th Australian Division and the Navy League, This address was later printed in full in ‘Navy News’.
In November I attended the meeting of the ACT Chapter in Canberra. Admiral Sir Victor Smith and Vice Admiral H.D. Stevenson were present together with some 45 Chapter members. My address at the meeting was on the application of our objects and aims and I illustrated the theme with the many projects in which the Society had been involved.
A combined tour of Garden Island and an inspection of HMAS TORRENS was held later in the month. Fifty members attended.
Our last meeting was held in HMAS JERVIS BAY. Speaker on this occasion was member-artist-author John Bastock who illustrated his lecture on ‘Ships of the Australia Station’ with a fine range of slides taken from his own paintings.
Garden Island Museum
1983 was noteworthy in that the first positive steps for the establishment of a Garden Island Museum were taken. This important project had been in my mind from the early days of the Society. In the second half of the 1970’s we had set up a gallery of Society relics at Snapper Island but the difficulty of reaching the island and supervising the gallery made the gallery unsuitable.
In this year I had found a sympathetic supporter for establishing a museum at Garden Island – the Secretary for the Department of Defence Production, Mr Charles Hatton, CBE. We were fortunate in having another supporter in the General Manager of Garden Island, Rear Admiral Nigel Berlyn, and the project was approved subject to a suitable building becoming available. The concept received Ministerial approval later that year.