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Memento : Issue 23
A tip-top tour 6 memento may 2003 The first stump-jumping plough, the 'Vixen', invented by the Smith brothers, 1876. Year 10 Kadina High School Australian Studies students exploring samples of our records. George the giant squid, the graves of shipwrecked sailors, and the innovative stump-jump plough were just a few of the local wonders we encountered on our tour to the tip of Yorke Peninsula. Starting at the picturesque port of Edithburgh, we travelled north, sharing our collection with residents of all ages along the way. People were delighted to see the array of records from our collection that chronicle the history of their area and its residents, and we in turn were treated to their local treasures. We discovered George the giant squid preserved in the Wallaroo Heritage and Nautical Museum. Measuring about 9 metres with tentacles outstretched, George was extracted from the stomach of a whale some 30 years ago. The Edithburgh Cemetery contains the graves of 40 sailors who lost their lives when the SS Clan Ranald overturned off the coast of Edithburgh in 1909. Most of them were Indian in origin and are buried far from the other graves. As our records show, the survivors were extradited to Colombo as illegal immi- grants under the White Australia Policy. A tip-top tour NAA: A6180, 18/1/79/17 At Androssan we found the original stump-jump plough invented by the Smith brothers of Yorke Peninsula in 1876. Its innovative feature was a mechanism that allowed the plough to rise and fall as it struck rocks and mallee stumps left behind on cleared farming land. Our collection includes letters from Richard Bowyer Smith registering the stump-jump plough and describing how it worked. Our fascination for these local icons seemed to be reciprocated by enthusiasm for what the Archives has to offer. Kadina secondary students were intrigued by migrant selection papers, Bublacowie military museum curator Chris Soar was impressed with our digitised defence service records, and Wallaroo maritime historians were inspired to plumb the depths of our lighthouse logs and coastal trading records. People were also quick to appreciate the value of our website and online database, enabling country users to conduct research without visiting a reading room. This was the first of our annual regional tours planned for South Australia, and will certainly be a hard one to top. Earlier this year Enid Netting and Graham Thomas from our Adelaide office set out on a regional tour of Yorke Peninsula in South Australia. Below is what they had to report.