Thursday, January 24, 2013

Sepia Saturday: Outside the country store


The theme photo for this week's Sepia Saturday is a shopfront and I found a photo to match the theme in our family's album.

A small country town in the early part of the 20th century needed a good general store because the nearest big town was Bendigo and getting there and back took all day. Not exactly convenient, especially in the days when horse-drawn vehicles were more common than cars. In Mitiamo the store was run by Charles W Sims and then his son-in-law Roy Phelan. As well as food and haberdashery they provided everything from petrol to insurance and delivered around the local farms every fortnight. There was a train station in Mitiamo so they were able to bring their goods to town on the rail system. It was a very busy place.

During WW2 the shop and the adjoining residence burnt down but I'll save that story for another day.

Outside Sims store, Mitiamo
Charles William SIMS, son of Samuel SIMS and Elizabeth CARTER was born on 21 May 1869 (Coliban, Victoria, Australia). He died on 20 Apr 1942 in Mitiamo, Victoria, Australia. He married Euphemia YEAMAN, daughter of Charles YEAMAN and Sarah PAYNTER on 16 Jun 1892 in Pine Grove, Victoria, Australia. She was born on 12 Aug 1866 in Cobaw, Victoria, Australia. She died on 01 Sep 1941 in Mitiamo, Victoria, Australia. 

20 comments:

  1. I really like this shot, of course the horse had an important job during this time period, Thanks for sharing, and coming by my blog as well.

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  2. What a wonderful photo! Look at that dog eating something near the horse. It is neat that you have so much info about the store.

    Kathy M.

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  3. Sounds like good customer service was the key.

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  4. Those general stores in small country towns were so important to the community and the personalised service they offered is just not found today.

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  5. Judging by what the dog is doing, they also sold dog food. And that's what makes a fine general store, sell everything!

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  6. What struck me was how well the dog looked compared with the horse. One's coat is nice and shiny, the other looks as if it is ready for a brush. Super photo.

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  7. That poor horse doesn't look too happy. What a big job he had.
    Nancy

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  8. I was curious about the Argus Australasian sign. I discovered that it was a newspaper.

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    1. Yes, should have mentioned the sign. The Argus was the main paper in the state of Victoria for decades and scanned copies are fully searchable at the National Library of Australia' wonderful website http://trove.nla.gov.au
      If you have research interests in Australia you positively must check out that webpage.

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  9. The horse must have been a bit jumpy as well because it's blinkered (or whatever they call those eye shade). I guess in those days the horses had to get used to just standing around waiting.

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  10. Is that really a horse or a mule? That Trove web site is just that, a mineable trove of gems.

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  11. General stores in small towns far from the city are also common in my part of the world. I have the same thoughts as barbara and nancy about the horse, but I can't differentiate a horse from a mule.

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  12. A lovely photograph. I seem to recollect the name Bendigo appearing in a children's song, but I have no idea where Bendigo is.

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    1. Bendigo is about two hours north of Melbourne on the south coast of Australia. It was a major gold rush town in the mid-1850s and has some beautiful buildings.

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  13. The poor horse looks quite scruffy - I bet he had to work quite a long day before being groomed. Lucky for the residents that they had Sims to deliver their goods - a day long trip for shopping sounds horrendous these days! Jo :-)

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  14. Great photograph. And how fascinating, we both have a "sim" in our photographs. "Sim City" almost!

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  15. Interesting photograph. The horse is the center of attention.
    I was curious about the sign too. I've never seen the word Australasian before.

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    1. The Australasian was an extremely popular weekly magazine in Australia and New Zealand. But, as an aside, the term Australasia is a term regularly used when journalists, politicians or public is talking about our area of the world - Australia, New Zealand, Pacific islands and countries, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines etc.

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  16. If there's an animal in a picture- they get my complete attention- great photo indeedy!

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  17. The horse could have used a good brushing,
    but what a great pic!!
    :)~
    HUGZ

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I love to read your comments. Thankyou for your interest.

Lorraine