Pick of the Week
Jack Hoadley lost his father the day before his thirteenth birthday, but can recall how amazed he was at the huge turnout at Arch's funeral. It wasn't until he retired that Jack was able to pursue that question of actually what type of person his father, Arch, had been? What were his beliefs, values and achievements during the years of his life?
To my mind, my dad was a hero from the little bit I really knew of him. He was a private man who never discussed his involvement in WWII and now, after my mother's death, I am destined not to know much more as many of dad's family have also passed away.
Jack has certainly been more diligent and persistent than I was, and has shared his father's story with us, and what a remarkable story it is. Jack's search begins with an outline of his grandparents' story. His grandfather, Abel, migrated to Victoria in 1865 and he married Susannah Barrett in a marriage that lasted 50 years and fourteen children. Jack then goes on to recall huge family gatherings at various aunty and uncle's houses down through the years.
It was 1888 when his grandfather established A Hoadley & Co, a jam making enterprise that went under the name of The Rising Sun. When Abel retired, he sold his company and the new owners then went into making chocolates and it is this product, under the name of Hoadleys that is so well known throughout Australia today.
Arch attended the Wesley College and went onto attend the Melbourne University. He was a firm believer in 'Muscular Christianity', an ethos established at Wesley College. Jack recalls overhearing Arch complaining loudly about American soldiers wearing rings and being provided with hot showers. Arch certainly didn't believe men should be raised as milksops or nambie pambies.Fresh out of the Melbourne University's Engineering Faculty, Arch's first teaching job was in Ballarat. From there, Arch went on to great accomplishments, including helping to construct Mawson's hut in Antarctica in 1912.
This book is a wonderfully researched piece of work, carried out with love and attention and is the result of how one man's curiosity to discover what type of moral fibre his father was made up of.
His search has carefully told the story of a great Australian who possessed determination, courage and social awareness. To add spice to the research, there are some great archival photographs for your information as well.
"A son's determination to discover his own father's story has lead to this detailed research and documentation on the life of a great Australian".
"A book is a private companion"