As part of our collection we have newspaper cuttings from 1922/23 donated to us by Tasman Noel Garnett. He was a Statistical Officer employed by the railways and as a sideline was a local correspondent for the Border Morning Mail.
The collection includes a letter he received from the newspaper with instructions. Political reports were to be confined to ¼ column full of meat, with preference to meetings which were advertised. Police court reports were to be summarised, and no notifications of concerts, lectures etc. unless advertised.
Garnet reported the rainfall according to the gauge at the Wodonga Post Office. In May 1923 he reported steady showers immediately preceded by a striking display of the Aurora Australis, playing near a large bank of black clouds, the display moved about a quarter of an arc along the horizon.
Garnet was paid by the column inch and the subject of a new water supply for the town provided a good income. The proposed water scheme went to a referendum, rate payers were encouraged to vote, with motor cars made available for transport for those that needed it to the polling place. There were 320 votes cast with 290 in favour. This led to the erection of our well known landmark, the water tower.
Another lengthy, therefore well paid, article was about the opening of the new Number 5 bridge over the Wodonga Creek. It was replacing an earlier one built “at least 50 to 60 years ago”. That then left three more bridges on the Wodonga to Albury road to be renewed; the Union bridge, known as No. 1 bridge, those at the wool scour and Half-Way Hotel, known respectively as No. 2 and No. 3. Plans were ready for their reconstruction as soon as funds became available. Wodonga Shire engineer was quite in accord with the effort to secure financial assistance from the Government, but he was afraid that without an alteration of the Federal Constitution the Government has no power to grant any such assistance. The position was that the Commonwealth can aid only in the event of the work being declared necessary for defence or for some other purpose over which the constitution gives its jurisdiction.