Just 175 years and 3 days ago the first edition of the Geelong Advertiser was published – November 21, 1840 in fact. It is Victoria’s OLDEST morning newspaper. The banner for the Geelong Advertiser includes the words “Fortis est veritas” or THE TRUTH IS STRONG.
On Saturday January 9, 1841, a supplement to the (then) standard 4-page issue was this amazing “Map of the Town of Corio (or Geelong) including the Suburbs, the Bay, and the River, 1841 … printed and published for John Pascoe Fawkner by Harrison & Watkins, Corio”.
And what a huge amount of history is in the map and the names associated with it – not least of which is James Harrison a true pioneer of our region. [Do yourself a favour and actually click on the link to read the Australian Dictionary of Biography entry for this truly amazing man!]
We’re celebrating the 175th birthday of this wonderful paper and as a researcher and historian [local and family], I am so fortunate to be able to search and access the digitised version of the Geelong Advertiser from 1840 to 1926. Of course researchers are greedy and we want more and more to appear online. Hopefully funds will become available to continue the digitising.
ANYONE with an ounce of history running through their veins knows how much history exists in our region. I have given presentations all over Victoria and also in New South Wales, South Australia and the Northern Territory. Many have been on Geelong and Point Henry (the place of arrival of so many ships bringing immigrants to our shores) but the majority have been on other local and family history subjects. Without fail the majority of the audience had ancestors who arrived in Geelong / Point Henry. In June 2011 I gave four presentations to the Genealogical Society of the Northern Territory [GSNT] – almost 100% of the audience had Geelong connections!
Being the LONGEST RUNNING morning newspaper in Victoria AND the newspaper covering not just Geelong but all of the western district of Victoria [and across the border into South Australia] the paper is so important to many researchers.
Did you know that the Geelong Advertiser published lists of people who shipped gold from the gold-fields to the port of Geelong in 1851-54? We have 6,624 entries in our Geelong & District database for the gold shipments. In fact our database includes 29,413 entries transcribed from various editions of the Geelong Advertiser on a variety of subjects.
It is full of people and local history – an absolute goldmine for researchers. If you are researching past 1926, in Victoria the Addy is on microfilm at the State Library of Victoria and the Geelong Heritage Centre.
From all of us … “Happy Birthday to the Geelong Advertiser“!