Monday, May 31, 2010

Mount Mulligan

Sunset over Mt Mulligan

Mount Mulligan was a coal mining town that ceased to exist in 1958. The town is/was based at the foot of Mt Mulligan, named after James Venture Mulligan who sighted the mountain in 1874. Gold was discovered on the Hodgkinson River during Mulligan's 5th expedition in 1876. The discovery of gold brought a rush of prospectors to the area with camps and small settlements along the Hodgkinson river. Ironically it was coal that was being sought after at Mt Mulligan

Ventilation shaft

Coal was discovered in the mountain in 1907. Commercial mining of coal commenced in approx. 1914. Coal was never very profitable as the method of mining was very expensive and labour intensive. The poor quality of the coal and transport problems ensured a slow decline of the township.

The town lasted for only fifty years but in that time it had experienced one of Queensland's worst mining disasters. A historical marker (below) erected in recent years tells about this disaster. "On Monday 19th September 1921 at 9:25 there was a loud explosion in the mine which killed 75 men. The explosion was heard 60 kilometres away at Mount Molloy".

The rusting remains of the town can still be seen and after a recent Mount Mulligan reunion the streets and important sites have been marked with signs. The only remaining intact building is the hospital which is now part of Mt Mulligan Station.

The Mt Mulligan cemetery, hastily built and consecrated after the disaster. More information here.

Mount Mulligan Disaster
After the Mount Mulligan disaster school children from around Queensland wrote to children at Mount Mulligan. Herbert Smithson from Mount Mulligan State school, whose father William Robert Smithson was killed in the disaster, replied to a child from Sandford, Mackay. He wrote:
Dear Schoolmates,
We thank you for your kindness & for yours letters of sympathy. Some day I hope to have the pleasure of meeting you. The accident happened at 25 past nine on Monday the 19 of September and they got all the men out some on Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday and Friday. The explosion started up at the fan and then in the tunnel. the blacksmith shop got blown to bits. The man who was in the shop got blown 200 yds away from the tunnel and after the explosion they went down the [mine] and worked all night and day looking for the men Everyday the people used to have breakfast dinner and tea up at the mine.
(Quoted in Bell, appendix B)
Herbert would go on to become a coal miner. In June 1942, while working at Collinsville State Mine, he was killed in an accident.

P. Bell, ‘If Anything, Too Safe’ (Townsville, Qld, 1996)

For a more detailed history of Mt Mulligan Click Here.

Saturday, May 29, 2010


Don't you love Fridays!

What really motivates people?

This is a clever cartoon created from a talk presented by Dan Pink, who was once a speechwriter for Al Gore, explaining what really motivates humans.
So... money really isn't everything? Who would have thought?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

New Matilda
announces it is closing down :-(

(Refer to BB and Pav video below for how the sadness it is)....

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Damn, I miss good local radio in Cairns.

Here's a gem from Youtube. The King and one of Ms Pteropus's favourites The late Pav.

Space Stuff

Here is a train's eye view of Dimbulah - jewel of the Mareeba irrigation district. The you beaut Savannahlander train travels this once a week all the way to Forsayth (in the middle of nowhere) where the line ends.

I have had the opportunity to travel as far as Almaden (near Chillagoe) on several occasions. I thoroughly recommend it. The country the line travels through is spectacular and it is one of the few remnants of an elaborate rail network that once existed in this part of the world.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


I have spent a few days at Dimbulah, a small town on the way to Chillagoe. Nearby is a very eerie mountain outcrop called Mount Mulligan, the place where, in the early 1900s 80 men died in a coal mine gas explosion, one of the worst mining disasters in Australian history. This is a Youtube video I found of a flyover of Mt. Mulligan. More about its amazing history very soon.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Massive Flashback!

I was mindlessly trawling through the music blogs on the intertubes today and came across this. I must say I was really young when this was around but I was amazed, after a little googlefacing that they still have a website:

Ahh... the memories!

Friday, May 21, 2010

A Palindrome

This has been around for a few years but it is very cleverly composed. Apparently This is a video that was submitted in a contest by a 20-year old. The contest was titled "u @ 50" by AARP. This video won second place.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

In The Backyard #5

This is the outer layer of the Case Moth larva
If you want to know all the scientific stuff (and I must admit it is more interesting than I thought it would be). GO HERE

Lucky me. I thought I had found one that had mettemof/ metammor/ met... changed into a moth

On closer inspection I thought .. "Wow,

Tasmanians what a strange sight!"

But after a bit of research on the intertubes I found that it was probably a couple of layabout males looking for a good time with a female case moth who never gets a chance to fly. After some really interesting wriggling around one of these guys gets lucky and flies away. She lays eggs and dies. Obviously God is punishing them for something evil .
For real info go here

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Another funny one from the interwebs

From a modified viral email doing the rounds at the moment regarding one of Australia's powerful conservative unions, the AMA:

"The Australian Medical Association has weighed in
on the new Rudd Health Care Proposals...

The Allergists voted to scratch it, but the
Dermatologists advised not to make any rash moves.
The Gastroenterologists had a sort of gut feeling
about it, but the Neurologists thought the
Administration had a lot of nerve.

The Obstetricians felt they were all laboring under
a misconception. Opthalmologists considered the idea
shortsighted. Pathologists yelled, "Over my dead body!"
while the Pediatricians said, "Oh, Grow Up!"

The Psychiatrists thought the whole idea was madness,
while the Radiologists could see right through it.

Surgeons decided to wash their hands of the whole thing.
The Internists thought it was a bitter pill to swallow,
and the Plastic Surgeons said, "This puts a whole new
face on the matter."

The Podiatrists thought it was a step forward, but the
Urologists were pissed off at the whole idea.
The Anesthesiologists thought the whole idea was a gas,
and the Cardiologists didn't have the heart of say no.

In the end, the Proctologists won out, leaving the entire
decision up to all the assholes* (sorry - politicians)
in Canberra."

*Obviously American in origin. Asses live in barns and zoos and occasionally in the wild, not in holes. Arseholes however, (sorry - politicians) live in Canberra.

Two asses

(Thanks to Groupthink)
Another ass

These are the other kind in Canberra

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Backyard Visitors #4

Bloody Termites!
These were once wooden venetian blinds (stupidly) left lying on the garage floor near a crack in the concrete.

Now I'm thinking about what might be lurking in the walls and under the floor of the Pteropus mansion.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Val's Volcano gets the nod

The Proposed Cairns Cultural Precinct

THE architectural group behind the proposed Cairns Cultural Precinct has been invited to exhibit its design at the Shanghai World Expo.

The Australian Pavilion

Article from local Murdoch World Domination media outlet (complete with obligatory Bogan Readers Comments).

Opening night Shanghai
Interestingly enough the whole opening show was designed by Australians, including Jimmy and the Boys member Ignatious Jones.

The Results are in

The Bogies 2010