U3A Bulletin No.31

Coffee cup and beans on a white background.November Coffee Morning

Friday 8th November 2019

at Albury Wodonga Community College

10:00 am Tea/Coffee/Food in kitchen area

10:30 am Guest Speaker in room 9

19th Century Paddle Steamers of the Murray River

Presented by David Spurr

I am a native of Albury but spent much of my working life in Sydney as a Geography teacher and school administrator. On retiring at the end of 2001 I returned to live on the Border. I returned to University study and completed a degree in Cultural Heritage Science at Charles Sturt University. My research in that instance involved assessing the attitudes towards and knowledge of local cultural heritage in Albury. Subsequent to that I became involved in History at Latrobe where I am currently undertaking a research degree.

My current research, which I will discuss at your Coffee Morning, involves the Paddle Steamer trade to and in the Upper Murray (Echuca & Moama to Albury Wodonga) in the middle of the 19th Century. I am attempting to show how the steamer business began as a link in an international colonial trading system that took on local characteristics as a response to the particular biophysical and socio-political circumstances of this part of the world. I look at the origins of the trade, its operation upstream to Albury-Wodonga and its eventual demise as the railways took over. I will put an emphasis on the Albury-Wodonga end of the business.