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Harcourt Before Electricity

Did you know that Harcourt didn’t receive electricity until 1933?

On Sunday JP and I spent a lovely afternoon at the ANA Hall for a talk about life in Harcourt before electricity.

1933 seems very late to be getting electricity. I’ve watched Downton Abbey and I know they had the power put on around the turn of the century. To make matters even more trying, some households didn’t get electricity until some 17 years after everyone else, even though they might have been just a kilometre up the road!

George doing what George does so well, entertaining the crowds!

George Milford hosted a talk about how families lived pre-1933. How they worked and how they relaxed.

George invited the group to share their experiences and to reminisce about stories handed down from parents and grandparents.

There was a pleasant fire crackling in the hearth and all the while that the talk was running, Diana (sorry but I didn’t catch your surname), was making us griddle scones which she cooked over the fire as a demonstration of domestic life in those early times. That’s all well and good in winter but during a hot Harcourt summer? Sheesh!

Diana toiling over a hot ‘stove’

George also showed us some interesting items that have been donated to the Heritage Society. One was the original ledger from Blooms Coronation Bakery which moved from Barkers Creek  to ‘Calrossie House’ which is on the corner of the Old Calder and the Midland Highways. The original ovens are still in place in the brick outhouses, plus the Bloom family’s delivery cart is still in existence. The old ledger lists all the names and addresses of their classes as well as what was purchased. What a beautiful artifact.

After the talk we had a shared afternoon tea as the invitation requested ‘bring a plate’. It was lovely to catch up and have a chat with the community, which as we all have busy lives, we often don’t have time for more than a quick hello at the post office.

Thank you to George and all the group for a great afternoon. Harcourt Heritage holds a talk on the third Sunday of the month, and you will find their calendar of topics at the Post Office.