How Lismore helped create revolutionary airmail service
RESEARCH undertaken by local stamp collectors and historians has revealed how Lismore played an important role in the development of a national airmail service.
Tired of long delays as letters were carried by ship or coach, 100 year ago the city's then-mayor Ted Mckenzie asked the then-Federal Member Walter Massey-Green to approach the Post Master General and suggest his office conduct Australia's first internal airmail service from area.
Yesterday, representatives from the Richmond River Philatelic Society and Richmond River Historical Society were joined by Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan and Lismore mayor Isaac Smith, at the Museum and Research Centre where they inspected an historic display showing how Lismore shaped the way Australians send and received mail.
Geoff Wotherspoon, vice-president of the RRPS said the concept of delivering mail by air was a remarkable idea for its time.
"It's wonderful how the people of Lismore approached the Post Master General to get airmail happening," he said.
President of the RRHS, Dr Robert Smith said the display showed how progressive the people of Lismore were at this time.
"The area was intensely settled but Lismore was a long way from the corridors of power," he said.
""When the first flight occurred in 1920 around 8000 pieces of mail were aboard."
Mr Hogan said his and Mr Smith's predecessors were way ahead of their time.
"The reason why it was such a success was because all levels of government understood the need to work together for the benefit of the community," he said.
Mr Smith said he encouraged people to visit the Lismore Worker's Club on Sunday November 27 when the two societies will display original records and the flights at the Stamp and Coin Day.
Meanwhile, Museum visitors Denise Byrne and John Stanton said they had no idea of the vital role Lismore played in developing airmail.