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Monday, 21 July 2008


The official newsletter of The Drover's Camp Assn Inc. Camooweal

VOL # 5 Issue 2 July 2008

Camooweal Drover's Festival

22nd, 23rd, & 24th August
come to

President's Report

Good day all,

Firstly I must apologise for this delay once again but have just returned from central Queensland after the sudden death of my younger sister, Margaret (52) but I am back in full swing getting ready for the festival. Time is certainly going fast as it is only seven weeks to go. We are having a lot of queries re accommodation and bronco branding at the moment.

The art gallery is coming along nicely so this year should see a lot of the memorabilia displayed permanently. Regarding photographs, artefacts and documents please remember there is no permanent staff here to collate, restore and catalogue, so please present with relevant details, also articles should be of good quality for display. Please bear in mind our charter is to preserve the droving era of Camooweal and district - we are not a national archive as we don't have the facilities or staff. But please remember all drovers of Australia will be recognised.

The bronco branding yards and toilets/shower block should be completed in the next two to three weeks.

This year at the AGM is election of officers and have included the relevant extracts from the constitution, also enclosing a nomination form and membership form with each cattle pad.
Looking forward to catching up with everyone next month.

Yours in droving,


Drovers Camp Festival 2008
Art Competition and Exhibition

Section 1 "Droving" - Open medium painting - Acquisitive
Sponsor - The Drover's Camp Assn Inc
PRIZE $1000
Section 2 "Australian Landscape" - Open Medium painting - Acquisitive
Sponsor - Norrie Drilling Services Pty Ltd
PRIZE $1000
Section 3 "Aboriginal Art" - Open medium painting - Acquisitive
Sponsor - Dugalunji Aboriginal Corporation
PRIZE $500
Section 4 "Australiana Relic" - Open medium painting (eg. cross cut saw, billy can etc.) - Acquisitive
Sponsor -
PRIZE $500
Section 5 "Junior to Year 12" - Open medium painting non acquisitive 1st PRIZE $250
2nd PRIZE $150
3rd PRIZE $100
Judges Award Sponsor - Lloyd and Wendy Hick PRIZE $100

Download the nomination form and return it to:
The Camooweal Drover's Camp Association
PO Box 21, Camooweal 4828.

Archive Photo's

Cronin Children

Cronin Children

Ellen Cronin (FINLAY) 17.12.1885
Kate Cronin (Martell) 02.01.1888
Thomas Cronin 18.02.1891
Elizabeth Cronin (Farrell) 10.11.1889
Arthur Cronin 05.06.1893


Mail Truck


Wray Finlay and Horse

Catherine Wray

by Mary Anderson (Nee Finlay)

When my great grandmother Catherine Wray waded ashore at Magnetic Island little did she know that within a few years she would marry another Irish immigrant and together they would travel west across Australia heading for Borroloola to set up a business.

"Kate" as Catherine was known, left her home town in Country Cavan and travelled to Australia in 1880 on a sailing ship the "Scottish Hero". She obtained work at Ravenswood as a house maid for the local magistrate and his family. There she met John James Cronin from Kanturk, County Cork, who was a gold miner at Ravenswood they were married there in 1883.

They loaded their wagon with supplies and set off, as luck would have it they didn't make it to Borroloola as planned. They became bogged in the Georgina River. Her husband John had already been with his hawkers van out to the Georgina River.

Their fist child Ellen was born at Rocklands Station in December 1884 so they decided to stay, there was no town of Camooweal then. They decided this was a good place to set up a store. Johns father had been a storekeeper in Kanturk so he was familiar with this type of business.

By the following year this little settlement had been declared a town. Ellen Frances Cronin, my grandmother was born in the town of Camooweal. On her birth certificate it shows she was born in December 1885 and that her sister had died by then. It is strange how the parents chose to name their second daughter after their first child who had died.

John and Kate had three girls and two boys. They were Ellen Frances who married A.H Finlay, Catherine married Henry Martel and Elizabeth married Michael Farrell. Thomas John married Rose Seary and one boy became lost at Morestone as a child.

Kate's husband died in December 1895 at Camooweal. His mother wrote to Kate asking her to send the children back to Ireland to be educated but Kate firmly refused.

There were several people who leased the store over the years, one of whom was Len Pedwell. Kate had sent her son Thomas to Barry and Roberts in Brisbane to learn the trade. He was running the business when I was going to school in the fifties.

Kate built the "Post Office Hotel" as it is now known. The first licensee was Kate then Alfred Levi Vernon in 1906. Others were Storey 1919, Riley 1920, Elizabeth Farrell 1935, her daughter, A.H Finlay 1939, Frank Marin 1945, T.J Cronin 1949, Jean Martin, L Conlan. Mrs Conlan built the new hotel on the same site.

In 1903 Kate Cronin married Alfred Levi Vernon in later years they retired to Bowen where they are buried in the Bowen Cemetery.

Ellen Frances and Arthur Finlay had four boys - Arthur "Fin" Nathan "George", Wray and Tom they were raised on Thortonia Station as Arthur senior and Mr Synott were partners. In 1939 Arthur sold his share to Mr Synott and the family moved to Camooweal. Arthur senior died in the late fifties in the Townsville Hospital and is buried there. His wife Ellen died while living in Brisbane with her daughter in law and is buried in the Aspley Lawn Cemetery. We were holidaying in Brisbane at the time and visited her in the nursing home a few days before she passed away in the 1970's.

Drover's Camp Festival Photograph Competition 2008

Section 1: Cute Country Kids Section 2: Australian Scenic
Section 3: Portrait Section 4: Droving historical
Section 5: Black & White Section 6: Animal/s


1st Prize - $25.00 & Certificate
2nd Prize - $15.00 & Certificate
3rd Prize - $10.00 & Certificate
Judges award - $100.00 (Sponsored by Shirley Macnamara)

Download the nomination form and return it to:
The Camooweal Drover's Camp Association
PO Box 21, Camooweal 4828.

National Finals Bronco Branding Competition

23rd & 24th August 2008

Beginner Branding Competition

Novice Branding Competition - Trophy: Peter Clauson Memorial Perpetual donated by Camooweal Butchery & Camooweal Agencies

Singles Branding Competition

Doubles Branding Competition

Town V Town Feature event

Carmel's Best presented entry - Any event $250
Sponsor - Carmel Williams



Download the nomination form and return it to:
The Camooweal Drover's Camp Association
PO Box 21, Camooweal 4828.


Bundy Rum Raffle ticket
Donated by Post Office Hotel Camooweal

Books for Sale

Keep the Branding Iron Hot - Bobbie Buchanan - $$29.95 + postage
In the Track of Old Bluey - Bobbie Buchanan - $29.95 + postage
Legends of the Outback - Marie Mahood - $25.95 + postage
Battlers of the Barkly - Alf Chambers - $23.95 + postage
Wind on the Cattle - Merrice Briffa - $24.75 + postage
Red Dust Rising - Marion Houldsworth - $30.00 + postage
From the Gulf to God Knows Where - Marion Houldsworth - $33.95 + postage
Maybe It'll Rain Tomorrow - Marion Houldsworth - $33.95 + postage
Barefoot through the Bindies - Marion Houldsworth - $29.95 + postage
Horse Bells and Hobble Chains - Jeff Hill - $35.00 + postage
Traditional Bush Horsemanship - J. F. Simpson - $21.50 + postage
Songs of the Droving Season - Bruce Simpson - $20.00 +postage
The Murranji Track - Ghost Road of the Drovers - Darrell Lewis - $29.95 + postage
Roping in the History of Broncoing - Darrell Lewis - $25.95 + postage
Rodeos and Ringers - Bill Crosbie - $20.00 + postage

Childrens Books

Outback Countout - Norah Kersh - $15.00 + postage
Outback Alphabet - Norah Kersh - $15.00 + postage
Grandma's Precious Chest - Norah Kersh - $15.00 + postage


Dear Liz,

Please find enclosed a photo of three children they are left to right Graham, Raynor and Dawn Haseman. Today Ray lives at Nerang and Dawn at Main Beach Gold Coast. Ray is the young boy who was run over by an army truck in 1943, along the Barkly Highway, and lost a foot. This photo was taken in 1943 about 28 miles along the Barkly Highway. The two drovers are unknown, but note they are droving sheep. Suspect the sheep were off Wooroona Station on their way to Mount Isa for human consumption. I am hoping someone can identify the drovers. Edna Jessop didn't know them, suggested they may have come from the east (Winton or Longreach) where there were sheep drovers. Also I am after a book called "You cant make it rain" by ? Fitzgerald - about North Australian Pastrol Company if any one has a copy they want to sell please let me know and name their price.


I am trying to track down a piece of local history. The unit history of the US forces state that they transported cattle on their trucks to the meat works at Mount Isa form cattle stations. Did anyone ever see cattle on the back of army trucks (Australian or American) during the war years in any part of Australia?

John Daly


Ray Fryer has donated two beautiful sawn wood slabs. We would like to offer people the opportunity to have their brand (or if you have an old brand from your family) burnt onto a slab for permanent display in the memorial. $50.00 per brand will be charged with the proceeds going towards running expenses for the Drover's Camp.

Bring your brands to the festival in August and leave your mark on the Drover's Camp!

The Drover's Ball 2008

The Camooweal Town Hall
Barkly Highway

Friday 22nd August 2008
Starting at 8pm till Late

Supper will be provided
Lucky Door Prize

Proceeds going to the Drover's Camp Association


Constitution Extracts


At the meeting of the management committee after the receipt of any application and the fee applicable for any class of membership, such application shall be considered by the management committee, who shall there upon determine upon the admission or rejection of the applicant.


12.(1) The management committee of the association shall consist of a president, vice president, treasurer and secretary all of whom shall be members of the association, and such number of other members as the members of the management committee may from time to time elect or appoint.

12(2) At the first annual general meeting following incorporation of the association, and every second annual general meeting thereafter, all members of the management committee for the time being shall retire from office but shall be eligible upon nomination for reelection.

12(3) The election of officers and other members of the management committee shall take place in the following manner:

  1. Any two members of the association shall be a liberty to nominate any other member to serve as an officer or other member of the management committee.
  2. The nomination which shall be in writing and signed by the member and the member's proposer and seconder, shall be lodged with the secretary at least 14 days before the annual general meeting at which the election is to take place.
  3. A list of the candidates' names in alphabetical order with the proposers and seconders names shall be posted in a conspicuous place in the office or usual place of meeting of the association for a least seven days immediately proceeding the annual general meeting.
  4. Voting shall be conducted by a simple show of hands or a division of the meeting.
  5. Should at the commencement of such meeting there be insufficient number of candidates nominated, then nominations may be taken from the floor of the meeting.
  6. The association shall not entertain proxy voting.

Camooweal Drovers Camp Festival


The Sunny Cowgirls
Peter Denahy
Neville Anderson
Tommy Maxwell

Festival Entertainers

Live Concert
Saturday 23rd August 2008

Last Updated ( Monday, 21 July 2008 )
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