Scroll To Top

History of Leichhardt Rowing Club

On these Bright Waters - A Centennial History of Leichhardt Rowing Club 1886-1986
Reproduced with permission of the author Merle Kavanagh

7. The Social Scene Before the War

The annual ball continued to be a highlight in the early part of this century, and was mostly held at the Leichhardt Town Hall. The Masquerade Ball in 1900 catered for 100 at a cost of 1/-d. per head, the committee requesting that the aerated waters be omitted and jellies and custards inserted in lieu thereof. In 1904 the problem of deciding whether to have beef tea or claret cup included in the 1/6d. per head quote was solved by having both at a cost of 1/9d. Flashlight photographs were arranged on a number of occasions, and the 1903 photographs and report appeared in the July 24th, 1903 issue of "White Wings", a boating magazine.

Dances were popular - Cinderella Dances were held at the Dispensary Hall or the Empire Hall, Petersham, or Sargent's Rooms in Market Street, and "Continentals" were held at Rodd Island. However, the committee did arrange on occasion for an extra room and cards to be provided for the non-dancers.

Smoke concerts were held regularly, disposing of 221bs. biscuits and about the same amount of cheese. Items included such gems as these from the 1911 entertainment—

Glee Rising early in the morning! (Alarm clock obligato by 'Arry Jones) Maiden Eight
Sketch Burglar Bill the Beer Snatcher. Illustrating how he nipped the
Bandsmen's beer.
Tin. B. King
Rondeau All Hands on Deck. Fergo and the Maiden Eight
Lecture Steering, carrying and getting out with lurid effects of club boats. T. Bones King
Grand Finale We'll win the Pennant or bust. Everybody.

By 1909 football matches were being organised with other rowing clubs and picnics to the Woronora River began shortly afterwards, with the oarsmen having a busman's holiday with boats hired there for some social rowing. Even a cycle trip down the South Coast took place.

Leichhardt also joined in the"Rendezvous" get-togethers run by other clubs, and invited their members back to their own functions of this nature.

1912 Olympic Eight

1912 Olympic Eight

The Club's first Olympic representative Harry Hauenstein raced in five seat

In 1913 another social committee was formed, the secretary being authorised to form one to organise social functions, to advertise the club and create additional revenue, any action taken by the social committee to be subject to the approval of the general committee.

Committee meetings had been held regularly at various hotels - Bald-faced stag, Clarence, Elswick, Carrington, Stokes, Hewitts, Imperial and Barton, as well as at the School of Arts and the Town Hall rooms.

< previous Chapter 6

> next Chapter 8

top of page

Website by Hope Stewart—Website Design & Management