Trove Tuesday – Dancing Girls

I found this article “Women at Dances” while searching for pioneer obituaries in the Portland Guardian, so I tagged it for a future Trove Tuesday post.  That day has arrived.  Today I introduce the preachings of  Reverend George Gladstone of the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Nathalia, Victoria.

tt10

Established August 1842. (1899, June 7). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63676343

Established August 1842. (1899, June 7). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63676343

Surely he didn’t get  away with that. Did he?  Well, yes and no.  While the Bishop of Melbourne stood by his man, the people of Nathalia wanted to run him out of town.

That finding came from a search – George Gladstone Nathalia – at Trove.  There were pages of search results specific to the Reverend and the implications of the June 1899 sermon reported in the Portland Guardian and beyond.

I was not surprised to read headlines like this:

The Dancing Crusade. (1899, June 24). Clarence and Richmond Examiner (Grafton, NSW : 1889 - 1915), p. 7. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article61302118

The Dancing Crusade. (1899, June 24). Clarence and Richmond Examiner (Grafton, NSW : 1889 – 1915), p. 7. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article61302118

or this:

THE REV. GEORGE GLADSTONE. (1899, June 21). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956), p. 8. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9516823

THE REV. GEORGE GLADSTONE. (1899, June 21). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1956), p. 8. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9516823

or even this:

THE EXTRAORDINARY SERMON. (1899, June 13). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article7505982

THE EXTRAORDINARY SERMON. (1899, June 13). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved March 30, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article7505982

A public meeting was held in the Nathalia hall and the following is an example of the tone of the meeting:

THE REV. GEORGE GLADSTONE. (1899, June 21). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956), p. 8. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9516823

THE REV. GEORGE GLADSTONE. (1899, June 21). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1956), p. 8. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9516823

A cry of “Horsewhip him” rang out as Mr W. McCormick had his say, indicating the Reverend’s sermons were receiving publicity around the world.

THE REV. GEORGE GLADSTONE. (1899, June 21). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956), p. 8. Retrieved April 2, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9516823

THE REV. GEORGE GLADSTONE. (1899, June 21). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1956), p. 8. Retrieved April 2, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9516823

The Reverend did not stop. He delivered a sermon at Barmah, not far from Nathalia in September 1899, and once again spoke of the evils of dances.  He also denounced the Irish, proclaiming they the were known for “drinking, dancing and dynamiting”.  George Gladstone then had to escape through a side door and run through the bush to an awaiting buggy, hence the headline:

Sensational Lecture by a Clergyman. (1899, September 23). The Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate (Parramatta, NSW : 1888 - 1950), p. 5. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article85778569

Sensational Lecture by a Clergyman. (1899, September 23). The Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate (Parramatta, NSW : 1888 – 1950), p. 5. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article85778569

A year on he was not leaving anyone alone.

Current Notes. (1900, October 8). The North Queensland Register (Townsville, Qld. : 1892 - 1905), p. 3. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article82340469

Current Notes. (1900, October 8). The North Queensland Register (Townsville, Qld. : 1892 – 1905), p. 3. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article82340469

I was surprised to read that in 1907 George Gladstone was still in Nathalia and was still delivering sermons that led to riotous scenes.

In 1908, it all ended up in the courts after the Bishop of Wangaratta revoked Gladstone’s license to preach.  After failing in the courts, Gladstone attempted to set up his own religion, the Natalia Reformed Church of England.  The Victorian Government refused to proclaim the religion.  He passed away in 1916.

George Gladstone, while totally unrepentant, was probably lucky he was not preaching one hundred years later.  Imagine the social media uproar #horsewhiphim

About these ads

4 responses to “Trove Tuesday – Dancing Girls

  • Jenny Coates

    Hilarious Merron! Certainly put Nathalia on the map then?! So surprising that he lasted so long considering he had alienated everyone! I wonder if the people still attending his church services were gawkers going to see if he really was as bad as was reported? :)

  • iODyne

    I thought it was hilarious too. Clearly he had a Personality Disorder. I just hope there wasn’t a Mrs Gladstone.
    I do so hope and pray there really is an afterlife that the Rev is spinning like a top at the RAP culture (and everything else). Oh. Maybe he was totally correct after all.

    Thanks again for yet another fulsome and enriching story

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 160 other followers

%d bloggers like this: