Classified advertisements have always been a favourite of mine to read but sadly they are disappearing from our newspapers. Reading the “classifieds” from old newspapers gives us some idea of the social history of a town. From lost animals to insolvency and tenders for new buildings to employment notices, the classifieds had it all.
In almost every paper there were lost and found horses and other stock. Inappropriate fencing or no fencing at all would have meant a roaming animal was a common sight.
Henry Gibb of Fiery Creek was still offering a reward for his cart horse five months after he last saw it.
Mr Mathison’s huge 17 hands high black horse would have been hard to hide. He offered a £1 reward for information on its whereabouts.
The Rev. Thomas Hastie was looking for a teacher of the Boninyong School (now Buninyong) i 1851. In Geelong, a couple with children were looking for work, him as a storekeeper and her as a housekeeper or teacher.
With plenty of building going on in 1851, Carver & Dalton’s auctions of timber would have drawn a crowd.
In 1856 the Collector of Customs of Customs House, Portland used the classifieds to issue a warning about tobacco used for washing sheep. Additional ingredients made it unfit for human consumption.
Poor George Gane had to air his dirty laundry in public presumably after his drunken wife ran up bills in his name. He declared he would not be responsible for any debts she incurred.
The following Immigration Remittance is an interesting notice and it had me thinking if I had any relatives that may have arrived in Victoria under the scheme described.
Something different to lost horses.
In 1879, the Clothes Washing Machine patented by John Walls could be purchased. The power, human power that is, needed to run the machine was minimal so even a 15-year-old girl could use it.
Miss Jenkins of Terang ran a sober operation at her Temperance Hotel and Coffee Rooms. Even the horses were well looked after. Meanwhile, Mrs Geddes of Camperdown had set up an employment agency for servants.
Henry Matson of Purrembete, tired of coursing parties in his paddocks leading to injury to his stock, threatened to lay poison in the paddocks. James Jackson of the Camperdown Brewery was also fed up. Fed up with his soda water and lemonade bottles going missing. He was going to sue basically any person with one of his bottles in their possession.