New Acquisition – “Toowong Rowing Club: One Hundred Years (plus a few)”

New Acquisition – “Toowong Rowing Club: One Hundred Years (plus a few)” / Jack Pritchard. Brisbane 2011

Staff at the State Library of Queensland were very pleased to accept from Jack Prichard a copy of his recently completed history of the Toowong Rowing Club (TRC).  This work charts more than 100 years of one of the premier rowing clubs in Brisbane and provides a companion to his earlier epic work “Rowing in Queensland 1880 -1995” and represents a significant addition to the library’s holdings on the history of rowing in Brisbane.

The author’s latest contribution to the Queensland memory provides an extremely detailed and intimate view of rowing club life in Brisbane.  It reads almost like a diary in which the chronology of events, thoughts and aspirations as well as achievements and failures of the participants are captured.  This is more than just a history of TRC it places the club within the in the history of Brisbane and its mighty and some times angry river.  Indeed the Author’s labours in putting this history together would have been much less onerous if it were not for the January 1974 Brisbane River flood which destroyed much if not all of the Clubs historical records.

      

Many prominent rowing identities names are associated with TRC such as, for example, Thomas Finney and Dave (“The Fox”) Magoffin.  Indeed while reading this book I discovered that the founder of Churchie (my old school) the Rev W. F. P Morris was a member of the Club and during the 1912 TRC regatta he rowed in the Kibble Cup wining crew and like me he rowed stroke side.

The history of TRC provides a window into the history of rowing in Brisbane and reveals the close association between Brisbane rowing clubs through the mutual occupation of a river, the development of the sport and the core reason for which rowing clubs exist – racing!

Alex Cutts, Senior Project Officer, Public and Indigenous Library Services – State Library of Queensland (practising accredited rowing coach)

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