Yallourn - Year by Year - 1928
The first sod, in the Victorian Government’s ambitious scheme to generate electricity at Yallourn, was turned more than a century ago (sometime around 1920); and for the next six decades, the unique township of Yallourn ‘took root, prospered, bloomed, withered and died’….
In this history series for the Virtual Yallourn website, various years in the life of the Yallourn have been researched and posted on the website. The monthly events, listed below, attempt to highlight some of the stories, about the township and its residents that made local and national news during 1928.
JANUARY: Radio station 3LO aired a 30 minute program entitled ‘The Yallourn
Power Station’ on 4th January 1928. Mr C.T. Briggs presented the program. 3LO (now known as 774 AM) commenced transmission in 1924. The ‘LO’ call sign referred to ‘local’; and it was the second radio station to commence transmission in Melbourne (the first being 3AR).
The station’s first program featured Dame Nellie Melba and was relayed from His Majesty’s Theatre. The radio program, about Yallourn, underlined the importance of the SEC’s project to the people of Victoria.
Photo above - Caption: TIRELESS ELECTRIC LOCOMOTIVE… One of the new German electric locomotives at Yallourn. It will haul 80 tons of coal at a time to the power-house, delivering 4,000 tons a day. Source: ‘The Argus’ February 13th 1928. Page: 13.
In February 1928, a wild fire broke out close to the Yallourn township and it imperilled the railway station until finally brought under control. On the same day, a terrifying fire also raged near Violet Town. In 1928, Sir John Monash publically commended the Yallourn Brigade following its performances at the State Fire Brigades Demonstration at Geelong. ‘Practise makes perfect’; and the Yallourn Fire Brigade would face some severe tests in the years ahead.
MARCH: Five infants succumbed to an epidemic at the Yallourn settlement in March that year. The outbreak was thought to be gastric-enteritis but subsequent reports feared meningitis.
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