Some bookmarks, especially vintage ones, set me off on a research journey to find out more about their subject matter. This "Green Mountains" bookmark is definitely one of those! I purchased it, among a bundle of old bookmarks, from a seller at a book fair a couple of years ago.
It is a large bookmark, measuring 19cm x 11cm wide. Curiously, neither the publisher or author of "Green Mountains" is named on the bookmark! Marketing is certainly more aggressive these days! Instead, the bookmark passes on a letter of appreciation from a reader of the book, who also did not name themself.
My research has revealed that the author of "Green Mountains" was Bernard O'Reilly, the publishers were 'W.R. Smith and Paterson' of Fortitude Valley, Brisbane, and the book was published in 1940. O'Reilly is best known for the discovery of the 1937 crash site in Lamington National Park (Australia) of a Stinson Model A airplane, the VH-UHH Brisbane, and the organization of rescue crews that retrieved two survivors. "Green Mountains" includes his own account of finding the aeroplane. The book also includes O'Reilly's experiences on the land and in the mountains in Australia, including in the Lamington National Park, Kanimbla Valley, and the McPherson Ranges.
I have not read the book but I am inspired to do so after reading this review about it on amazon.com:
"While visiting friends in Beechmont, Australia two years ago, I was given this small book as a way of learning more about the history of the region. This story is set just over the next hill from my friend's home. It is a short read, taking perhaps an evening or two, depending on one's distractions. It quickly became, however, one of the most inspiring books I've ever read.
There is a depth to humanity that we like to think exists but rarely have so clear an example as humbly laid out in this book. It consists of two parts; first, Bernard O'Reilly's 1937 experience in finding the wreck (and two survivors) of a small airliner after ten days of fruitless searches by government resources. The second part of the book (written in late 1940), moves back in time to tell the tale of his family's history first in New South Wales at the turn of the century, followed by their eventual move to become the first settlers on an enclave of land that, three months later, was closed to further settlement and became Lamington National Park in Queensland.
This book is both remarkable and an incredibly inspiring look at life in Australia from 1900-1940. Moreover, it's not just about Australia or any nationality but about the fortitude of pioneering families in any landscape, whether it's in America in the 1800's, Australia in the 1900's or anyplace human kind deems worthy of building a life from nothing but wilderness. For example, it was several years before they had scratched out enough pasture to support a horse. Up to that point, all supplies, tools, and food was carried in on their backs from the town of Kerry, 25 kilometers away.
I truly wish all the world knew this story". Timothy Ettridge, 5 December 2011
Debrah Gai Lewis lives in Lillian Rock, New South Wales, Australia and is a bookmark collector, yoga teacher and SoulCollage® Facilitator (among other things).
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In this blog I highlight new additions to my bookmark collection, feature stories about some of my favourite bookmarks (mine and other people's), and share interesting snippets I find on bookmarks and related topics. Thanks for visiting. Enjoy!
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