Monday, March 19, 2007

The Coathanger's 75th anniversary

Today according to Australian Eastern Standard Time when this item was posted
1932 Australia: At the height of the Great Depression which it is said hit Australia harder than any country but Germany, Sydney Harbour Bridge was officially opened by left-wing New South Wales Premier Jack Lang (brother-in-law of Australian author Henry Lawson).

However, before Lang could do the honours of cutting the ribbon with scissors in the traditional fashion, an ex-soldier by the name of Francis Edward de Groot (pictured) charged ahead on a horse, in full military garb, and slashed the ribbon with his sabre on behalf of the New Guard, a right-wing paramilitary organisation opposed to Lang's politics. According to Australian author and broadcaster Gerald Stone, in his book 1932, the New Guard had at that time 100,000 members, many of them armed, and constituted the largest militia in the world.

Sydney Harbour Bridge is still the world's largest steel arch bridge ...

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