History Lives with Her

Article excerpt

She wooed me. There is no other way to say it.

I thought I was heading out the door but she was having none of it.

Stick your hand in there and pull out the green booklet, she asked. Who was I to say no?

This was Mrs Schmierer asking the question.

I pulled out the photo album in question and she opened it to page one, a glorious step into the long and colourful life of the state's oldest person.

The photographs of animals on her father's farm, of her sister astride on a horse, were not in colour, but they lived on the page.

She had taken the photos on her own box camera when she was 16 years old. That would have been in 1915.

Even more astounding - she had developed the photographs herself.

The moment triggered an obvious, yet mind-blowing thought.

How many events that changed the world had this wonderful woman lived through?

How many moments that changed the way we live had she witnessed?

So in honour of the great lady, I decided to list 110 of those moments. I failed but not for want of trying and not for want of moments. You'll see why. In no particular order they are:

Lindy Chamberlain (1980); Saddam Hussein (1937-2006); Slim Dusty (1927-2003); Nelson Mandela freed (1990); IVF was invented (1978); Fiona Gay Coote became the second, youngest and first female in Australia to undergo a heart transplant (1984); Ash Wednesday bushfires (1983); Vegemite invented (1922); Great Depression (1929); World War I (1914-18); World War II (1939-1945); Assassination of JFK (1963); Man walks on the moon (1969); Titanic goes down (1912); Berlin Wall comes down (1987); Fraser Coast council amalgamated (2008); Vietnam War (1959-75); The Millennium (2000); Queensland turns 150 (2009); Ireland gains independence (1921); Demise of the Soviet bloc (1991); John Lennon shot (1980); First black president of the USA (2008); Invention of television (1929); World's first computer (1946); 9/11 (2001); Australia becomes a federation (1901); Princess Diana dies (1997); Queen Elizabeth II coronation (1953); Queensland wins four consecutive State of Origin series (2009); First electric-powered washing machine (1908); Camp David Accords (1979); Banjo Patterson dies (1941); Don Bradman (1908-2001); Melbourne Olympics (1956); Sydney Olympics (2000); Iraq War (2003); Boxing Day Tsunami (2004); Mother Teresa (1910-1997); The stolen generation (1906-1969); Kevin Rudd says sorry (2008); Man goes into space (1961); Indian independence (1947). …