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Cattle Pads Volume 8 Issue 1 PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 29 May 2011


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

VOL # 8 Issue 1 May 2011

A Ride To Remember
Left to right: Drovers Wally Atkinson, Keith Luscombe, Pic Willetts and Rodney Watson with Ben Kragt,
David Shaw and Vicki and Jayson Watkin leaving The Drovers Camp on 1st May 2011

President's Report

Gooday All,

Well this year is certainly going quickly, here we are in May, only 15weeks ‘til Festival. Do not forget the dates 26th, 27th and 28th August. We opened the Memorabilia Shed to the tourists on the 1st May and all is going well. Over 100 people through so far this month and we still have 10 days to go. The weather is great, not too cold yet, so it is very favourable to the tourists.

It has been rather a sad beginning to this year. We lost Neville (Stumpy) Sloan in March, then in April we lost Cheryl Smith (past secretary) and in May we have lost Jack Megson (Up and Down the River Jack) and Keith Campbell. My condolences to all their families and may they rest in peace.

On the 1st May, "A Ride to Remember" left The drovers Camp in Camooweal after a lovely concert held the night before. Country music singer Jayson Watkin from the Atherton Tablelands has organised this wonderful event. It is a trip from Camooweal to El Questro Station in Western Australia, following the stock routes as much as is possible (given the water still around from our monster wet season). Four drovers (Wally Atkinson, Pic Willetts, Rod Watson and Keith Luscombe) are accompanying Jayson, his family and the support crew. They plan to arrive at El Questro on 4th June. All reports are that they are travelling well. Along the route, Jason is doing concerts with his wife and two children and raising money for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. You can visit Jayson’s website (www.jaysonwatkin.com) to see how they are travelling and donate to the Royal Flying Doctor Service. We wish them all well.

Well folks must away to get this Cattlepad to the printers, and look forward to seeing you all in August.

Yours in droving, Liz

Goodbye to the Old Drover

When you hobble your horse
By some dry watercourse
And make camp by an old weeping willow
After a feed of old stag, you crawl into your swag
With a bottle of rum for a pillow

Then you wake up next morn
With a cough and a yawn
And take a good pull at the rum
A quart of black tea, before you can see
And wait for the daylight to come.

Then you pack up your gear
Your horse bells are all near
And soon you’ll be moving again
You ask yourself why, as you look at the sky
And pray to God it don’t rain

Then it’s back on the job, to take one more mob
Get a quid while ever it’s goin’
Things could get a bit rough
But your men are quite tough
And it’s the life that you’ve ever known

T’was a life that was free, for men like you and me
Until those big road trains took over
They travel so fast, over distance vast
And said goodbye to the old time drover

As we look ‘oer the plain, and see it over again
And we know that our time’s getting nearer
For there will come a time when stars no longer shine
And we know it’s the end of an era

But we can’t dwell on the past, for time goes too fast
And to the young ones we’ll have to hand over
So with a tear in my eye, I’ll just say goodbye
And feel proud that I once was a drover.

By Bob Leis

Keith Campbell
28/07/1928 - 14/05/2011

Keith Campbell
Keith passed away in Julia Creek where he
was a resident for many years. He did
droving from Rutland to Iffley in 1966,
Vanrook to Julia Creek in 1970’s and
Inkerman to Cloncurry in the 1960’s.

In Loving Memory


Neville Charles Sloan known as Stumpy to most of us was born to Robert and Lillian Sloan in Chinchilla on 27th November 1938. Stumpy has two older brothers Bill and Kelly.
In 1956 at 18years of age along with big brother Kelly they came up to Chatsworth to work. Stumpy was found to be reliable and mature beyond his years and at not yet 21 was made head stockman. It was during this time he met Carol Graham who was to become his wife in 1964. They were married in Warwick on the 21st March. Neville was a great jockey (following in his father’s footsteps). Life was good at Chatsworth but when Clarry Johnstone (Carol’s stepfather) needed a hand to run Montague Downs they packed up and moved to Boulia.
Carol and Stumpy had three children, Neil born in August 1962, Michelle born in May 1965 and then Todd born in October 1970.
In 1975 they moved to Mount Isa to put the children to school and Stumpy got a new job with Mount Isa City Council and drove the water truck for 23 years until his retirement.
Sadly Carol passed away1985 and Nev continued to work and live in the Isa.
In the latter years Stumpy loved to help his mate Gordon MacDonald with his cattle out in the Territory - his other passion was gold detecting of which he found a little. He’d often be off with Rex, Mussels, Chunky or Gerry on these trips having a great time.
In August last year Stumpy had to go to Townsville hospital for tests on his heart then in early October was diagnosed with cancer. He bravely battled the latter ‘til Friday 11th March at 7.00am when he snatched his hobbles and went to his mates in higher pastures.
Stumpy is survived by his three children, Neil and Christine, Michelle and Kev Cogill, Todd and Donna, Three grandchildren Dean, Lachlan and Katie and one great grandson his little man Ryan.
Stumpy was a true gentleman, stockman, drover, jockey, boxer, father , grandfather and a great friend of many.
May Stumpy Sloan rest in peace.

Neville Charles Sloan
Neville Charles Sloan
27th November 1938 - 11th March 201

Cheryl Smith
21/03/1963 - 09/04/2011

Cheryl Smith

Sadly missed by everyone at The Drovers Camp
Past Secretary of The Drovers Camp

Cadbury Fundraiser for The Drovers Camp

Support the Drovers Camp and buy a carry case of Cadbury Chocolates

Cherry Ripes, Gaint Freddos, Crunchies or a variety of other confectionary @ $48.00 per carry case (48 bars in each case).
Blocks of chocolate (85gram) are available @ $60 for carry case of 24 blocks.
Snakes and Mixed Jellies (130gram) are available @ $24 for a carry case of 24 packets.

Get together with your mates and buy a carry case to help The Drovers Camp and get your chocolate fix!!

Please contact Ellen Finlay 07 47482186 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it to place your order.
If you are local, allow 7 days for orders to arrive at Camooweal. Place your order NOW for pick up at the Drovers Festival weekend.
P.S. Ellen will out of communication 7th - 20 June 2011.

Battery Fundraiser

The Drovers Camp is collecting old vehicle batteries for scrap as a fundraiser. If you have any old batteries lying around, drop them off to the Drovers Camp complex on the Barkly Highway at Camooweal, or give us a call and we will pick them up. Preferable with acid still in battery.

Dedication to Jack Megson
22nd September 1922 - 7th May 2011

My brother Jack

Jack was born into a conventional family, but Jack never fitted into anything conventional. He was a rebel from a very young age. Our sisters told me he was a bad boy. Answering our father back was unthinkable, but not to Jack and he paid dearly for this. He would not adhere to our mother’s religious beliefs and our father told him he would never amount to anything. Consequently, he was the recipient of many vicious beatings and Jack began running away. He became the black sheep of the family.

Eventually he was sent to Gosford Boys Home as an uncontrollable child from whence he escaped and was on the run. At 14 years he was jumping trains with his swag and carried a sawn off shotgun with which he intended to shoot our father if ever he run into him again.

The Second World War saw Jack join up as a commando and he fought gruelling battles with the Japanese. On leave one time, he returned home and told me when he saw our father he just felt sorry for him and so let the gun idea go.

Over the years he and I corresponded or phoned each other and I was able to visit him in the bush on a couple of occasions. At times when I was in desperate circumstances Jack was always there for me. He was a loyal and loving brother whom I could always rely on. He was self educated and extremely well read. (he even wrote poetry). So I say that our father’s prediction was way off.

Jack’s life after the war included some time at Mt Isa Hospital as a wards man and many years at Camooweal and Thorntonia Station. He hated cities and could not understand the stress of people who lived in them.

Jack loved the bush. It was his life. He didn’t worry too much about fashion or clothes generally. He always said he was keeping his suit for Canberra!!

Jack’s heart was always in the bush and I believe that his spirit remains there and always will.

Lalla McGuiness (Sister)

Do You Know Bill Boulton?

William Boulton taken in World War III am seeking information about my father, Bill Boulton and Liz has kindly offered to send this out. I would like to know where he was, and what he did, in the years between the wars.

He was born in Toowoomba in 1896 into one of the pioneer families of that region, and the Sheridans of Surat.

In 1916, when he enlisted in the first war, he was an overseer at Weewondilla, near Muttaburra, where his father was the manager.

1928 - 1930, he was an overseer on Turn Off Lagoons station out of Burketown.

I have the following record of one of his droving trips: May 1938, 1000 bullocks, Connemarra to Durie. Burns, Kidman, Held owners, W. Boulton in charge.

In 1939 He enlisted and fought in WW11, in which he fought until 1945.

His last droving trip was with my mother, on their honeymoon, in 1947 or 1948. She was Mary Roma Love. They then settled in Mitchell, where I was born. I would love to talk to anyone who knew him, or of him - anything at all would be most appreciated.

Many thanks, and hope this jogs a memory somewhere for someone.

Please note he is not the Billie Bolton, from Taroom.

Regards Sherry Boulton


The Salt of The Earth

By Col Duncan

From time to time throughout our life as we travel far and wide
We are bound to meet the Characters that have shaped this land of ours
They come from many nations, of colour, race and creed
And have adapted to our lifestyle, Australians proud and free
Since the arrival of the First Fleet, the hardships they’ve been many
The lash, hard work and more of course, but we made it through adversity
Be it drought or floods or fires in outback, town or city
We are never ones to baulk or shirk or even look for pity
But through it all there shines a light on our country’s men and women
And we trust our God will give us strength in this battle that we are winning
It’s our very nature to fight for what is right,
And hopefully succeed each day before the failing light.
And though it all there sometimes comes, a person who stands out
That someone unassuming, who knows what the hardship’s all about
As tough as saddle leather, with a will that won’t be broken
With a nature that is caring, and with words so softly spoken
And a helping hand to her fellowman, but cares little about religion
Her Christian duty fulfilled each day, offering help in all directions.
At Camooweal, in the great North West is where this story begins
A meeting by chance at The Drovers Camp with this woman straight and true
Who had travelled over a Thousand miles to be with the Droving crew.
To mingle with many hard Droving men, and their stories of bygone days
Those who rode the tracks, packed the packs and drove wagonettes across the vastness of the great outback.
Now this woman of substance, is with us no more, and has sadly passed away
She’ll be running a ”Plant” at the Drovers Camp or trailing Stock on Heavens Plain
For her spirit lives on, as it did back then, when handy with Whip and Reins
The likes of her we’ll not see again, Yes “Rowdy” was her droving name.
Her ashes now scattered, in a place she chose, but yet so near to her heart
And it’s just like she’s returned to the high country, for that very last muster with "Par"
Yes, this Woman RUTH LEAHY, was I believe, the Salt of the Earth.

Drovers Crossword

Download our Drovers Crossword and print it out.

Answers will be in next issue!

2011 Bronze Spur Entry Form

Download our Bronze Spur Entry Form to enter your verse in this year's Drover's Festival.

2011 Bronco Branding Entry Form

Download our Bronco Branding Entry Form to enter in this year's Drover's Festival.

Leonie Winks Photography

PostOffice Hotel

Branded Hatracks

Dematini and Young

Last Updated ( Sunday, 29 May 2011 )
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