Sunday, October 31, 2010

Where does Inside History come from?

Erskineville today is very different from the orchards and gardens covering the rich alluvial flats cultivated by the early settlers. However, due to its closeness to the city, transport and shops, as well as the colourful and varied residential character, Erskineville is a great place to live!

In 1794, Acting Governor Grose granted 120 acres to Nicholas Devine, Superintendent of Convicts. Togetherwith another 90 acres gained from Governor Hunter in 1799, Devine called his land "Burran Farm". The roughly covered the suburb we now know as Erskineville.

Devine built his home and established a large orchard and rose garden near the present site of the Erskineville Railway Station. He was specially fond of rose-gardening and developed several new species suited to the Australian climate. One of these he called the "Rose of Australia". A hotel built on the site of the rose garden is called by that name.

One day after he had retired, Devine and his wife were attacked by bushrangers. Mrs Devine died, but when Devine recovered, he was assigned a convict, Bernard Rochford, to protect him. Apparently, Rochford and his wife looked after Devine well. Before Devine died at the age of 104, he gave Rochford "power of attorney". Rochford subdivided the land and sold it in large allotments to some of Sydney's most respected citizens. They reaped a rich harvest from some of Sydney's best soil. Hired labour produced oranges, wheat, sorghum, vegetables and even a little tobacco.

The Rev, George Erskine, Superintendent of the Wesleyan Mission in the colony was one of the purchasers. With convict labour, he built a large double fronted brick cottage which he named "Erskine Villa". The road which ran past became known as Erskine Villa Road and later the suburb was named Erskineville. This home was still standing until 1961.

Source: Page 26, south sydney: shaping the future

Saturday, October 30, 2010

How can I contribute to Inside History?

The Inside History ethos:
Inside History is aimed at people passionate about history and heritage, whether it’s their own family’s ancestry, or in a broader social context. Published bi-monthly, Inside History provides insightful, interesting and practical features to its readers. Its 80 or so pages are packed with advice, articles and expert tips on genealogy, and stories on Australia and New Zealand’s varied social history, from tales about century-old houses and country towns, to heritage gardens and the biographies of our famous (and infamous) citizens.

Inside History. What do we do?
  • highlights and promotes Australia and New Zealand’s diverse history, to help readers interested in discovering their family’s past
  • provides a platform for historical organisations, societies, bookshops and anyone involved in history to showcase their work, collections and events to a national audience
  • provides a place to share the uplifting, fascinating and bittersweet tales that make Australia and New Zealand what it is today. 
Our contributors. What are we looking for?
Inside History is open to a wide range of writers throughout Australia and New Zealand. We encourage historians and genealogists to contact us if they are interested in contributing an article, book or website review, interview or images appropriate to Inside History. If you have a great story that needs to be told, or practical advice that will help our readers in tracing, preserving and documenting their family history, we want to hear from you.

Generally articles need to be:
  • around 1000-1200 words in length, although this can vary depending on the subject
  • chatty and informal, with accurate and engaging content. References need to be included as endnotes if any archival records are quoted
  • supplied with high-res images or suggested images, if possible.

Articles will be edited for house style, length and clarity if need be but always in consultation with the writer.

Please contact our editor, Cassie Mercer on 0408 004090 or via email on, if you would like to discuss your work in more detail. We'd love to hear from you.

We look forward to working with you and seeing your research published in Inside History!

Happy researching!
The Inside History magazine team
Explore your past, enrich your future

Sunday, October 24, 2010

How can I subscribe to Inside History Magazine?

Our doors are now open and we're selling subscriptions and single issues to our lovely new readers.

Single issues are $10.50 [plus $2 p&p], or we have two subscription plans:
  • $31.50 for 6 months [3 issues], or
  • $63 for 12 months [6 issues]
  • Subscriptions are available to libraries and societies by invoice
  • Subscribers get FREE postage for each issue - usually $2 p&p.

Order online,, or you can also call on 02 9590 9600 or email us to book direct, if you prefer to talk to us.

Or pick up a copy from your local newsagent nationally - click here to find out where.

Any queries can be emailed to or call 02 9590 9600 with questions! We'd love to hear from you!

Happy reading!
The Inside History magazine team
Explore your past, enrich your future


All figures above are inclusive of GST