The telegram was discovered by Peter Plowman — a volunteer with the local Peterborough History Group.
Mr Plowman spent his working life in printing businesses and did not know why telegram was kept.
PHOTO: Peter Plowman found the telegram while cleaning the Peterborough printing shop. (ABC News: Patrick Martin)
The unlikely find had special significance for the printing buff.
“I had a grandfather that fought at Somme for England, so the telegram has a significance for me as well as the print shop and the local community,” Mr Plowman said.
Lieutenant Colonel David Edmonds unveiled the carefully restored telegram at a public ceremony at Peterborough. Lt. Colonel Edmonds said the find had significance for the whole region.
“Our information is that the local regiment was the 9th Australian Light Horse Regiment — they formed the 9th Light Horse [Regiment] in the First World War — it was the second light horse regiment to be raised here in South Australia,” Lt Colonel Edmonds said.
“All through the mid north of South Australia, from Peterborough to Port Pirie, Port Augusta all the way down to Kadina and Clare, the 9th Light Horse Regiment drew its soldiers who went away in the First World War.”
“It’s a very important piece of local history and Australian history, too.”
He said it was an honour to unveil the telegram as a former commander of the 3rd/9th Light Horse Regiment, which still existed in Adelaide.
He said the battle — which left more than one million dead and wounded across all sides — represented the last German offensive of the war.
PHOTO: Lieutenant Colonel David Edmonds stands beside the 100-year-old telegram. (ABC News: Patrick Martin)
“The telegram shows that the Germans were still well and truly on the front foot.”
“It was shortly thereafter that the war turned in the Allies’ favour.”
He said the war impacted communities throughout Australia “for decades after the war”.
The measures taken against German-Australians in South Australia
During the first World War, German settlers in South Australia and Australia became known as ‘the enemy within’ and extreme measures were put in place to deal with the threat felt by the predominately-British population.
The names of places that had been named by Germans were changed and German settlers were interned or deported and taken to work camps on Torrens Island.
Torrens Island detention camp was set up and held 400 german men during the First World War.
German established schools were closed, the German language was no longer taught in schools and German’s lost the right to vote.
Because of this German families began to change their name as a means of avoiding persecution and to prove their commitment to their new home.
If you were a German-born resident of Australia you had to register at your local police station, and most German-descendents were treated in similar ways.
German residents of Australia were inflicted with hostile attitudes even if they were naturalised and had sons and brothers fighting for the Australian Infantry Force.
Australian authoritities would target German residents with unjustified searches, survelliance and arrest.
During the war 4500 Germans in Australia were interned- 700 were naturalised and 70 were Australian born.
Image: Popeye in earlier days. Commencing at Elder Park, Popeye travels on the River Torrens under Victoria Bridge to the Torrens Weir before turning and gliding back past the Festival Centre, under City Bridge and University Footbridge before docking at the Adelaide Zoo wharf by Albert Bridge.
The first Popeye was built on the banks of the River Torrens by Gordon Watts and launched in 1935.
It was 7.6m long, made of jarrah, and could hold up to 20 people. Captain Watts named the boat after the American cartoon character Popeye the Sailor.
The Popeye became very popular very quickly. As well as being a ferry between Elder Park and the Adelaide Zoo, it could be hired for weddings and other events.
The service expanded to meet demand. In 1948 Watts converted a Glenelg cruise boat for Popeye 2.
The next three boats, Popeye 3 to Popeye 5, were made at Port Adelaide between 1949 and 1951.
They were also jarrah hulled and could hold up to 40 people each.
Watts skippered the boats until March 1962, when the business was sold to Keith and Elma Altmann.
Keith Altmann had been working in petrol stations and did not know much about boats but on his first day as the boat owner he drove a Popeye during the Festival of Arts.
Altmann later expanded operations to include the hiring of more paddle boats on the Torrens. Jolley’s Boathouse near Altmann’s boatshed had 41 of these pleasure craft.
The boats could not be operated all year. Each winter the Adelaide City Council, which leased the boatshed and the right to use the river, would drain the lake and the river over several weeks.
Operations were also affected for nine months in 1967 when the Morphett Street bridge was built and for a similar period, more recently, when a footbridge was being built to the Adelaide Oval.
“The burgers were better at Burger King,” writes Bob Byrne of Adelaide’s initiation into the US fast food fad.
Adelaide’s first taste of American-style fast food happened in 1962, when Don Dervan – originally from Washington D.C. – opened his first Burger King, on the corner of Anzac Highway and Leader Street at Keswick.
Don was living in London in 1959 and met and fell in love with an Adelaide girl, Jean McEntee, who was on a finishing tour after completing school at Woodlands.
They came back to Australia in the early 1960s to settle down and raise a family, but when Don noticed there were no American-style fast food restaurants in Adelaide, he decided to start his own.
He chose to name his “drive-in’’ restaurant Burger King, which was also the name of a small but growing hamburger chain in the United States.
At the time there were no legal obstacles to using the name. In those early years, Burger King brought the American dream to Adelaide with a “car hop’’ service.
On pulling into a parking bay, a waitresses would rollerskate to your car, take your order and return later with a tray which was then attached to, and rested on the driver’s side window.
I vividly recall my first visit to Burger King as an impressionable young teenager; I thought I’d died and gone to heaven!
Back then we craved all things American.
Most of our popular music came from the United States, as did our films with movie stars such as James Dean, Natalie Wood, and Frankie Avalon.
Here at last was something so American and Adelaide’s teenagers were immediately hooked.
Burger King was selling more than a million burgers a year in South Australia, with outlets also opening at South Road, Darlington; Jetty Road, Glenelg; a beach kiosk at the end of Anzac Highway and an in-store Burger King at John Martin’s in the City and Elizabeth.
Many Boomer readers will remember those years: carefree happy days when a good weekend included a burger and milkshake at Burger King on a late Saturday afternoon or night while making plans for a big weekend.
Read on further via When Burgers Were King | Adelaide Remember When