I have been the victim of a whispering campaign for the past 44 years.
I want my old workmates to know that I didn’t start the Fire in the Electricity Area of the Old Government Printing Office way back in 1970.
BUT, I did alert everyone by running through the Machine Room, screaming like a little girly.
The Fire Brigade put out the fire and at the same time filled up the well outside the basement window with water.
Barry Cagney nearly opened the window, which would have seen him flushed away forever.
Longest Serving Shit Boy
I believe that when I was at the Guv I was the longest serving shit boy ever! Forget the Flash, and dirty David Barber.
For two and a half years I worked very hard at becoming a great shitboy which meant a lot of arse kissing, crawling and never saying “NO!”
I became so famous that people came from all over the world to study me.
Luckily, they never gave me a Spelling Test.
Several times I was asked to be a Guest Lecturer at Adelaide University lecturing on the subject of “What makes a Perfect Shitboy”.
So, it broke my heart that I was wrongly accused of being an arsonist.
The vicious whispering campaign started back then and has haunted me for 44 years.
I do hope you publish this article so people can know the Real Truth.
When I started at the Guv, the tradesmen and apprentices on the Jobbing Floor I can recall were Bruce Lockier, John Buckby, Vic Byford, Charlie Hewett, Jack Van der Schanns, Ted “The Red” Sobolowski, Alex Riley, Jeff Brand, Bruce Kutcher, Jack Wells, Ray Stagg and Dennis Bradley.
In addition there was one of the nicest persons I have ever met Joe Schoberg.
Fred Hardwicke was one of the clickers then and he was the best teacher an apprentice could have ever had, you were there to learn the trade and not have fun.
At the back of the Jobbing Floor there were two guillotine operators, Con Mohr and Ben Bey.
Fred Pretty was in charge of the Monotype keyboard Room and his staff were Ted Burkert, John Hunkin, Alan Swinstead, Paul Korff and Ralph Hannant.
Bill Wallace was in charge of the Mono Casters who comprised, Cecil Dodd, Bert Tinkler, Neil Cross, Peter Reeve, Alex Crawford and later John “Mooster” Bryant.
I remember well the trips over to the smelting room to empty the type boxes. Firstly you had to wait an eternity for the lift driven by Bill McKenzie.
Then you had to hope that Rozario was not in the lift because Rozario was always wanting to kill Bill with the bale hook every time they shared the lift.
On Monday nights the apprentices had to attend Kintore Avenue Trade School. I remember spending several nights having drinks at the old Rundle Hotel along with a counter meal so we could face the likes of teachers Bob Green and Bill Sims.
I recall the daily double cards for the horses that were run on Friday afternoons, by Ted Burkert and Jack Findlay and then later by Dennis Bradley and John Buckby.
Dennis Bradley resigned, got as far as Murray Bridge and lost all his pay on the horses and started back again as if he had never left.
Ken Arnold and Dick Radford were in charge of the Binding Room, a chap called Bert Parsons was one of the Machine Room bosses,
Norm Trigg was in charge of the Despatch, Peter Shepherd was in charge of the Store, assisted by Jean Neumann.
Ken Nancarrow and Bob Herriman ran the Composing Room, along with Jim Hosking, Frank Lock, Albert Wellman and Graham “Yank” Hall.
Ron Hamence was the reader on Hansard and I think Ivan Merrett was the clicker at that time.
Clarrie Stone was the smelting man before Bob Miller and I remember he had green teeth, not surprising when you think what impurities those guys must have inhaled daily. The carpenter then was Len Wallace.
Jim Walker was in charge of the Intertype Room along with the likes of Jack Findlay, Max Gill, Stan Sharman, Roger Radbone, Charlie Ludlow, Don Loose, Brian Hartshorne and the legendary Frank “Popeye” Nelson who could set the Police Gazette, and read a car magazine at the same time. The end result often showed it.
Howard Nilsson and Howard Bateup were the mechanics at the time.
I well remember Dick Stockdale as the head reader and Kay Thorpe. Dick religiously walked from Mile End to and from work every day.
The Jobbing Room reading staff was Ron Lahiff, Colin Haines and Iris Morgan.
Who can forget trying to keep pace with Alf Slender who would park his car down near the Adelaide Oval and walk, more like run, up to the old office in King William Road.
There is the priceless story of Monotype Keyboard operator Paul Korff who was looking out the window and said to his offsider that the car going around the corner looked like his car.
Very observant, and it was his car being stolen.
A Photo of the City Baths taken in 1919 (SA Collections).
The Old Government Printing Office was right next to the old City Baths. Both buildings have been gone for years now.
A Slim and Great Aussie Swimmer, Dawn Fraser.
Adelaide entertainer and celebrity Big Pretzel in Vietnam, 1966.
When the weather was hot and it was Ladies and Girls day at the City Baths I am sure there would have been typesetters, comps and binders hanging their leering and sinful heads out of the ground floor window and lusting after the semi nude female talent on display below in the pool.
During the 1950s the centre of attraction was a young Dawn Fraser who was training for the Olympics and sunbathing with her was an equally young “Big Pretzel” singer, dancer and striptease artist.
A Photo taken by Paul Korff of the City Baths being pulled down.
It was probably out of one of the Guv’s windows that the late Paul Korff (Monotype Operator) peered down just in time to see his wonderful little car which had just been stolen disappearing around the corner and down King William Road.