[Editor: This article, about Australia Day, was published in The Warwick Daily News (Warwick, Qld.), 29 January 1951.]
The anniversary of the foundation of Australia, which is commemorated to-day, occurs at a most critical period in the long pageant of our history.
One hundred and sixty three years ago, or 18 years after the discovery of the eastern coast by Captain Cook in the Endeavour, Governor Phillip and his pioneers arrived. The famous First Fleet, carrying nearly 1000 souls, had sailed on May 15, 1787, and, proceeding via Rio De Janiero and the Cape of Good Hope, reached Botany Bay on January 18, 1788, and Sydney Cove — where Phillip, finding Botany Bay unsuitable for his purpose, decided to found his settlement — eight days later. On that day, January 26, 1788, the formal founding of the new colony was effected, and from these beginnings grew the Commonwealth of Australia.
Shortly after his arrival one of Phillip’s officers declared, bitterly, that in 100 years the country could not support the little band who first had landed on its shores. Yet Phillip made the colony almost self-supporting in five years, and that with a population that had grown in the interval to five times its original size. How many times since have others, with the outlook of Phillip’s officer, made similar prophecies with regard to other developments, only to be met with equally emphatic refutation?
Foundation Day, 1951, is accompanied by dark clouds spreading on the world’s horizon, clouds which may, or may not, presage a gathering storm.
At such a time it is well worth remembering a remark by Mr. R. G. Casey, then Australian Minister at Washington, during World War II: “I don’t know how long this war will last or what it will cost, but I feel that, when it is all over, if we retain Australia and I possess only the suit of clothes I stand up in, I shall count myself well off.”
That is the spirit which should inspire every Australian citizen on this 163rd. anniversary of Foundation Day of a land that, relatively to other lands, has bestowed a great wealth of happiness and freedom.
It is appropriate to remember, however, that the quility of being relatively carefree does not condone a disposition to carelessness; so that there is no better time than today for one and all to resolve that their efforts and bearing at all times will do honour to the memory of resolute men who, 163 years ago, laid the foundations of this growing nation.
The Warwick Daily News (Warwick, Qld.), 29 January 1951, p. 2
Botany Bay = a bay located to the south of the City of Sydney (New South Wales), located in the south-eastern section of Sydney’s greater metropolitan area; it was discovered in 1770 by the English explorer James Cook (1728-1779); Botany Bay was intended as the location for the first British settlement in Australia, but Governor Arthur Phillip (1738-1814) decided that the area was unsuitable, and instead founded the settlement further north, in Sydney Cove (in Sydney Harbour, Port Jackson, New South Wales), but, despite the change of location, the settlement was often referred to as “Botany Bay” for many years
See: “Botany Bay”, Wikipedia
Cape of Good Hope = a rocky promontory on the southern Atlantic coast of South Africa
See: “Cape of Good Hope”, Wikipedia
Captain Cook = James Cook (1728-1779), an officer of the British Royal Navy, explorer, and discoverer of the eastern coast of Australia (1770); he was born in Marton-in-Cleveland (Yorkshire, England) in 1728, and was killed at Kealakekua Bay, in the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii), in 1779
See: 1) “Cook, James (1728–1779)”, Australian Dictionary of Biography
2) “James Cook”, Wikipedia
effect = accomplish, bring about, carry out, cause (something to be done), make happen
Endeavour = a ship of the British Royal Navy, which was under the command of James Cook when he discovered the eastern coast of Australia (1770); the ship was launched in 1764, and scuttled in 1778
See: “HMS Endeavour”, Wikipedia
First Fleet = a British fleet of eleven ships, which transported convicts, officials, and military personnel to New South Wales, in order to establish a colony; the fleet left England in May 1787, and arrived in Sydney (NSW) in January 1788
See: “First Fleet”, Wikipedia
Governor Phillip = Arthur Phillip (1738-1814), an officer of the British Royal Navy, commander of the First Fleet, and the first Governor of New South Wales (1788-1792); he was born in London (England) in 1738, and died in Bath (Somerset, England) in 1814
See: 1) B. H. Fletcher, “Phillip, Arthur (1738–1814)”, Australian Dictionary of Biography
2) “Arthur Phillip”, Wikipedia
presage = an indication, intimation, sign, or warning of a future occurrence or event; an omen, portent; a foretelling, intuition, prediction, or premonition that something is about to happen; a foreshadowing, intuition, or presentiment of a future occurrence
R. G. Casey = Richard Gavin Gardiner Casey (1890-1976), soldier, politician, ambassador, and Governor-General of Australia (1965-1969); he was born in Brisbane (Qld.) in 1890, and died in Fitzroy (Melbourne, Vic.) in 1976
See: 1) W. J. Hudson, “Casey, Richard Gavin Gardiner (1890–1976)”, Australian Dictionary of Biography
2) “Richard Casey, Baron Casey”, Wikipedia
Rio De Janiero = the capital city of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (both the city and the state have the same name)
See: “Rio de Janiero”, Wikipedia
[Editor: Changed “quility” to “quality”.]
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