Donkey Jack’s 30 year drinking spree

By MICK ROBERTS © COMPARED by one 19th century scribe to Shakespeare’s Caliban from the Tempest, the legendary Donkey Jack was Wollongong’s best known drunk. Of all the drunken characters who frequented the Illawarra – and there were many –… Read More ›

Debauchery at Sutherland’s Railway Hotel, where half-naked, drunken men fought, their ‘faces bruised and torn’

By MICK ROBERTS © THE workers camps that sprang up for the men building the South Coast railway and improvements to the Royal National Park, south of Sydney, during the mid to late 1880s became notorious for their violence and… Read More ›

The North Gong Pub: From wayside inn to imposing tourist hotel

By MICK ROBERTS © ALTHOUGH the North Wollongong Hotel has changed considerably in appearance since German immigrant, Theodore Bode opened his little wayside inn on the site in 1878 its principal purpose of providing hospitality remains unchanged. Now a favourite… Read More ›

The temperance movement: Richard Crabb the controversial anti-liquor lecturer

By MICK ROBERTS © THEY travelled the country preaching the evils of drink; colourful characters with the gift of the gab and often with a tale of their remarkable transformation from drunkard to teetotaller – they were the temperance lecturers…. Read More ›

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