West Darling Arts
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Spend some time in the shop and Rod will tell you a story about any facet of riverboat history you care to name. I received a wonderful story about his favourite boat, P.S. ALPHA, on which his Grandmother, Mrs Daisy Hobbs worked. Daisy amongst many other duties, looked after the Captain’s five children. One of the children, Pearl, became a Captain, Mrs (captain) Pearl Wallace and wrote a book called A River Woman.
The ALPHA was built in 1899 and operated as a general store ‘ For many people living beside the rivers, the ALPHA was their only contact with the outside world. The boat was the most general of general stores, piled high with mixed goods…groceries, vegetables, bags of bran and pollard, wheat, trousers and blouses, jewellery, rolls of dress making fabric from Germany and England, cheese, lollies….We even brought furniture, including pianos when ordered.’ (Rodney’s fact sheet.)
The collection is growing organically, as people find the shop and donate riverboat objects to Rodney. Rodney is a meticulous researcher, piecing together oral history and library archives, and has made a number of factsheets about each riverboat in the collection.
Let’s shout out for volunteers like Rodney, who have a passion for making and collecting, and who love to share their stories with tourists. Research Shows that cultural tourism in regional areas is hugely important in driving positive visitor experiences and longer stays. You can read more about the value of the arts to regional communities here: https://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/.../Creating-Our...
Riverboat Rod’s Model Paddle Steamer Display
Shop 20 Darling Street Wentworth NSW 2643
Wednesday to Sunday 10 - 4
Telephone: 0429 370 239
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