A Walk Down Memory Lane

Remember some of the toys you played with as a child.

A dolls pram and a rocking horse were treasured toys. I hope these photos bring back some fond memories of childhood fun.

40pramandhorse

Growing up in the 1950s, 40s or before

remember when…

It was safe to play with all the kids that lived in your street only coming home when it got dark.

  • Money was pennies, sixpence and a pound was a lot of money.
  • You stood in the one spot to talk on the telephone as it had a cord from the telephone to the handset.
  • Television was black and white and there were only a couple of channels.
  • If you missed a TV show bad luck as there were no recorders so you could see it later.
  • Hours were spent at school learning your time tables and the correct way to write.

What a lot of changes there have been over the years since growing up in the 50s, 40s or before. Many things have disappeared all together or are very different today .

Share your favourite memories and take a Walk Down Memory Lane for a while.

15 Comments

  • heino ehlers says:

    I have been in Aust. since 1953 went to school at gilles plains and then worked at the gumerecha post office would love to hear from my old friends Klaus Wicht or his sister Marita or any one that remember me from work or otherwise
    regards
    heino ehlers

    • Born: 1942
    • Location: germany
  • graeme says:

    Cracker night was always May 24 or Empire Day. A half day off school to build the bonfire in the local paddock and then a roster of security to prevent early lighting by rival gangs!!

    • Born: 1946
    • Location: Auburn
    • heino ehlers says:

      hi Graeme i too was born in 1942 in germany when did you come to australia?
      heino

      • Born: 1942
      • Location: germany
  • Ron Atkinson says:

    “I REMEMBER WHEN……….”
    Memories by
    Ron Atkinson

    Ah yes, I remember the first Stereophonic Sound broadcast. I was in my mid-teens and our next door neighbour was into ‘Electronics”. Wow, his room was full of all kinds of electronic items and dazzling gizmos. They were very mind boggling to me, had no idea what they were or how they worked, and they looked very strange.
    One day he invited us in to hear a ‘Stereophonic Broadcast’. We were only used to rather scratchy 78 LP records on pressed vinyl or listening to our radio set or if your family could not afford one, we fell back on the soft volume of home-made crystal radios. So, what is a Stereophonic Broadcast we asked? He then tried to dazzle us with science about hearing a train roaring across the room!!
    I was sure he was pulling our leg, because how could you hear a train run across the room.
    So, at the appointed time we ventured into his room and was told where to sit, not just anywhere, but in that particular seat, which we did with many questions floating around our heads.
    He then explained that he had two radios, one in each corner of the room opposite us. He then tuned them to two different stations which of course sounded silly as both stations were obviously transmitting different programs.
    However, at the appointed time both stations transmitted the one program and after a brief explanation of what stereophonic was started the stereo broadcast.
    To say we were amazed would be an understatement. The two DJ’s were on their own channel and talking to each other like WOW, as if they were both in the room with us.
    They then played various sounds, and music where you could almost visualise the orchestra being in front of you and the different musical instruments in different parts of the room. And yes, we had the steam train, whistle blowing (and scaring the life out of us) roaring from one side of the room to the other. Boy, were we mesmerised, he then went on to tell us that music records would soon be coming out in stereophonic. Well, did he really mean that, I don’t know. Yes, this was in the 1950’s.
    Next fantastic invention he introduced us to was TELEVISION. Moving pictures in our lounge room!!!. Now come on and pull the other one. So, our next invite was to go and have a look at his brand new TELEVISION SET.
    Wow again, it was a huge cabinet with knobs across the front, a cloth grill at the bottom and this small slightly oval rectangular glass ‘window’ in the centre at the top.
    This was a couple of weeks before the first TV transmission, but that did not stop him from turning it on and after a few minutes (for everything inside to warm up) we were able to see a TEST PATTERN and hear some music. WOW. For two weeks we would go and watch this test pattern and listen to the orchestral music playing. Our enthusiasm was obviously building up and eventually on September 16, 1956 we were greeted with the face of Bruce Gyngell with the words “Good evening, and welcome to television”. This was channel TCN-9. The show, which only went for a few hours ended with a mummy kangaroo putting her baby to bed with the words “Goodnight, this is Sydney tonight”. So with that I will say “Goodnight, this is Sydney tonight”

    • Born: 1941
    • Location: St Clair, Sydney, AUS
  • Ron Atkinson says:

    Who remembers the great old “Cracker” nights. One I remember well was when I was about 15 years of age, for weeks a few of my mates and I cut down trees and dragged them to a vacant lot and started building a huge bonfire. It had to have been about 15 to 20 feet in diametre and about 6 feet in height, we were just about to use a ladder to start on the final layer. Then about three days before cracker night, some big bullies from another suburb came and chased us off our bonfire and claimed it as theirs. I can still remember about four of us sitting in the gutter most upset about losing our bonfire, when I said something like “if I had some paper and matches I would go and burn it down now rather than let them have it for cracker night”, and yes, you guessed it, one of the others with me came up with paper & matches. Needless to say, with our good selection of dry timber the fire was a huge success two days before cracker night.

    • Born: 1941
    • Location: St Clair, Sydney, AUS
    • robyn says:

      I remember “Cracker” nights as being lots of fun. We had a large enclosed yard at the bottom of our back yard for the chooks and an old corrugated iron tank that had once been a rainwater tank but the bottom had rusted out. Mum would fill it with branches from the garden over a period of time and it would be ready to light on Cracker night.
      I’m not sure how happy the chooks were with all the noise of the crackers going off and the fire blazing but they were safe in the hen house.

      • Born: 1940
      • Location: Born in the Forties
  • robyn says:

    I recently bought a bundle of old sewing patterns and in the middle I found an old letter.
    There was no date but it had at the top Oakview Monday Morning and was to Dad.
    I thought I would share part of the letter with you

    We were in Kilkivan on Saturday and when they put the dance off we could not go to the pictures as we had no way of getting back to camp only on the train and it left a nine o’clock so we jumped the rattler back on it. You talk about rain I think we are in for a flood as it has been raining nor for two days and at present it looks worse than ever, never mind while it keeps up we are having a good spell, but it is hard to put in the time. I could not even go to church yesterday (Sunday) though I intended to if it had not been raining. I bought you a ticket in an easter Egg on Sat, you might be lucky enough to win it as it will be drawn at the Catholic Ball next Friday night.
    We are going up to Murgon on the train next Saturday for a trip we will only have about three hours there but can have a bit of a look round, it will only cost us half a crown train fare with our privilege forms.

    It was very interesting to read the letter as it provides a glimpse at life years ago. The letter ended with Love From Cop ( I think)

    • Born: 1940
    • Location: Born in the Forties
  • C shepherd says:

    Great site , brings back happy memories . thanks .

    • Born: 1943
    • Location: Swinton. Manchester
  • Stuart says:

    A child’s life in America in the forties was probably not that much different than in Australia. My favorite pastimes were listening to the radio, 78 rpm records, reading and collecting comic books, as well as going outside to play with my friends. In late afternoon after school and at night, I would lay down, not sit, on a comfy stuffed chair and tune in to my favorite kids’ adventures using my imagination to picture what was going on.
    On Saturday afternoons we would attend the local movie theater to view a double feature , short subjects, newsreels, cartoons, and the latest episode of whatever Serial was playing at the time, all for the admission price of around 25 cents.

    • Born: 1939
    • Location: New York, USA
  • Diane Smith says:

    My daughter said to me I can’t go to work in a skirt in the winter I will freeze! Today they all have artic proof boots and gloves, fur hats and scarves, thick denier tights and comfy cosy trousers and complain of being cold!
    We had to walk over a mile to school whatever the weather. If it rained you went in wellies, if it snowed, and it did snow a lot in winter then, you went in wellies. I didn’t possess a pair of leather boots until I was twelve and I was one of the lucky ones. We had to try and defrost/dry our feet the best we could, also sit in wet clothes all day.
    Yes we respected our teachers then. We had a deputy head teacher who walked down the corridor at changeover to the next class, swinging his arms in a circular motion and woebetide anyone misbehaving, they received a punch! Can you imagine that nowadays, the parents would be up at the school causing uproar over the treatment of their little angels. In those days if you told your parents about such treatment at school you would get a clip round the ear at the very least for misbehaving at school.

    We were ‘lucky’ we traipsed across a park to a unheated open air swimming pool once a week in the summer months, where once there, I hid on the bench in the changing room so the teacher couldn’t see my feet under the door, and stayed there until I was found out.

    • Born: 1946
    • Location: Dagenham Essex
    • robyn says:

      What wonderful memories Diane and so different to life today. I enjoyed reading your comment.
      Thanks
      Robyn

      • Born: 1940
      • Location: Born in the Forties
  • Judith Hodkinson says:

    I loved my childhood! There was so much to do, bikes to ride swimming and lots of it. No swimming lessons of course you just learned the best way you could. You did not wear shoes to school on wet days. In fact you only had two pairs one pair for school and one pair for best, a pair of new shoes was wonderful gillie ties were the in thing. Nothing much to be scared of school teachers were very respected and you didn’t even know there first name. They were called Miss, Mrs, the men were always.

    • Born: 1940
    • Location: Brighton Le Sands Sydney
    • robyn says:

      It was a childhood of freedom to such things as riding your bikes staying out till dark and so many other things to do. I remember the respect for elders like teachers and yes you never knew their first names as it was always Miss, Mrs and Mr.

      • Born: 1940
      • Location: Born in the Forties
    • Ron Atkinson says:

      Hello Judith, I lived at Kyeemagh from about 1957 till about 1962. I went to the CofE church at BLS. Over those years I had a couple of FJ Holdens, a two tone green one and a black one, two of my mates, Terry and Phil used to run a ‘taxi’ service from Rockdale to the great swimming baths that were at Brighton beach. Of course we only offered our ‘taxi’ services to pretty young girls, you might have had the offer of “How about a lift honey?” at one time or another. Actually it was how I met my first wife, yes, I picked her up. Ahh, the good old days, one time Terry had a lone of a starting pistol for sport events, and when we had our services turned down, I would drive a bit down the Bay Street, chuck a wheelie and roar back with Terry leaning out the window with the starting pistol going “Bang Bang Bang”. Scared the living life out of them. Yes, the good old days. The old baths are gone, as the same with the Pacific Private Hospital, the FJ’s and the starting pistol.

      • Born: 1941
      • Location: St Clair, Sydney, AUS
  • robyn says:

    I remember staying inside on cold winter days trying to keep warm. The kitchen was always a warm place to be especially if you got to sit near the wood stove. It was the same deal of an evening sitting by the open fire in the lounge room.
    I never liked being cold so I did not enjoy walking to school on a cold frosty morning when you had to stamp your feet to try to warm them up.

    • Born: 1940
    • Location: Born in the Forties

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