Laszlo Biro & the Birth of the Ballpoint Pen.

The Hungarian Laszlo Biro (above), a magazine publisher, noticed, during a visit to a printer, how quickly the printer’s ink dried. It occurred to him that this fast-drying ink would work well in a fountain pen. This dense ink, however, would not flow through a pen. Therefore, Biro decided to replace the metal writing nib […]

Judy Marks.

Judy Marks (nee Lane) was born in 1951 to parents Jean and Fred Lane at Mile End Hospital. At that time the family were living at Turner Street, Cowandilla. Shortly after they moved to Norwood. The family were rabid Norwood barrackers except for Judy who couldn’t see past the black and the white of the […]

International Printing Museum, Carson, California.

Founded in 1988 by David Jacobson and Ernest A. Lindner the International Printing Museum has perhaps the best collection of antique printing machinery in the world. Massive iron and steel machines, works of mechanical genius made before letters could be turned into strings of 1s and 0s, crowd this impressive museum. A guided tour of […]

Paddy Hickey, “Rat of Tobruk” and Time Docket Bandit.

The stars of the 1944 Charles Chauvel-directed The Rats of Tobruk (Grant Taylor, Peter Finch and Chips Rafferty). Paddy Hickey was a Printing Machinist who worked on Miehle 2. Like a lot of blokes in those days he was a World War II veteran and was one of the original “Rats of Tobruk”. When he […]

Jackie Veitch, Overtime and the “Bunnies.”

Jackie Veitch did his apprenticeship at The Old Guv and stayed right up to his retirement in 1973. He would work out his pay to the cent, and get time off to take up underpayments with the pay office. He just loved Overtime and was always the first in line for the overtime roster and […]

Heavily Armoured Dinosaur had Ginger camouflage to deter predators.

An illustration of Borealopelta markmitchelli. The study suggests that it displayed a camouflage effect known as counter-shading. Illustration: Julius Csotonyi/Courtesy of the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology. It was built like a tank, covered in armour, and weighed about the same as a caravan – but this beefy dinosaur was still at risk of being […]

“I Apologise Ron” Yes, another True Story.

This is a True story about Ian “Meggsie” Grunert. The Social Club put on a Cabaret over at the Netley Canteen. Grunny shows up rotten drunk from watching Westies at Richmond Oval and spending some time at the Rex Hotel. He sees his old mate, Ron Fletcher (factory manager) and “wife” and makes a bee […]

The Overland Telegraph linking Australia to the World, 1870.

For early Australian settlers, communication with the rest of the continent, let alone an overseas destinations, was a long and difficult process. Letters and news could take months to travel halfway around the world. After the death of Charlotte, Princess of Wales, on 5 November 1817, it wasn’t until 2 April 1818 that New South […]