James (Jim) M MacFarlane
Albert Park Rowing Club then Mercantile Rowing Club (VIC)
Jim commenced his rowing at Albert Park as a coxswain and became one of the great coaches not only of his time, but throughout time. To provide an insight, I quote from the 1919 book of John Lang, The Victorian Oarsman.
No book about Victorian rowing would be complete without mentioning the names of the men who have been chiefly responsible for introducing and keeping up the sound principles of oarsmanship. Few will likely disagree that the names of Mr. Charles Donald, Mr. Sydney A. Edwards, Mr. J. M. Macfarlane, and Mr. George E. Upward stand most prominent in this respect. They are household words in our rowing world in Australia. The generous time devoted by these gentlemen to the success of the sport has made Victoria the premier rowing State of the Commonwealth.
Jim as cox of the winning 1905 Victorian crew
His association with Mercantile commenced in the 1920s and he achieved considerable success as a coach. It arose after a disagreement with that Club and he and three others joined Mercantile. Initially they were advised that their membership applications were unlikely to be favourably received, but were eventually accepted. Allegedly some members of Albert Park never forgave Mercantile for accepting their membership applications. With Alex B Sloan well entrenched as senior coach, there were no senior crews for him until 1930 when Sloan retire due to ill health. His first season say early success but could not win the State Championship.
His death was recorded in the 1962-63 Mercantile annual report and it added that at the time of his death at the age of 91, he had been a Vice-President of the Club for 30 years and either Vice-President or Patron of the Victorian Rowing Association continuously from 1912, some 50 years.
Known rowing record
1897 - Nagambie Regatta, Junior Eight, bow - First
1897 - Nagambie Regatta, Maiden Eight, bow - First
1897 - Upper Yarra Regatta, Maiden Eight, bow - First
1898 - Upper Yarra Regatta, Junior Four, bow - First
1899 - Melbourne Regatta, Senior Eight, bow - First
1899 - Nagambie Regatta, Junior Four, bow - First
1903 - Interstate Championship Eight, cox - First
1904 - APS Head of the River, co-coach MGS first crew - Eliminated in heat
1905 - APS Head of the River, co-coach MGS first crew - Second
1905 - Interstate Championship Eight, cox - First
1906 - APS Head of the River, co-coach MGS first crew - Eliminated in heat
1907 - APS Head of the River, co-coach MGS first crew - Eliminated in heat
1912-1958 - Elected Vice-President of the Victorian Rowing Association
1913 - University Championship Eight, co-coach SUBC crew whilst in Melbourne - Second
1929 - Victorian Championship Four, coach - First
1930 - Victorian Championship Eight, coach - First
1930 - Victorian Championship Four, coach - First
1958 until death - Elected Patron of the Victorian Rowing Association