Dictionary of Sydney

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Mr Charles Wilson recalls fishing in the Georges River in the early twentieth century, interviewed in 1986


Mr Charles Wilson was born in 1904 and interviewed in 1986 for the 'Looking Back at Liverpool: An Oral History of the Liverpool Region 1900 to 1960.' Here he recalls the bountiful fish available to fishermen in the Georges River in the early twentieth century.

CHARLES: I had a canoe and you couldn't sink it, it was a beautiful big twelve-foot canoe. And there was a locker in each end with a big Mintie tin, sealed, carry[ing] our stuff in. If it turned over then it wouldn't sink, you couldn't sink it, by the way it was built. But then I'd put a net across the river, and then I had a fifty-two hook line across the river. I used to catch stingrays and everything in that river. And you'd hear the tails going 'wish, wish', and a cow bell on the other end of it, and then the fishing line would fish. Any amount of perch, bream, bream was plentiful, flathead, flathead right here to the weir. I put a net across here at the weir one Saturday afternoon, come up the street here up to the hotel with the caretaker from the vineyard. I said I'm going back when the tide's in. Went back on a Sunday morning, pulled the net in. There was quite a number of flathead, but there was only the heads there, the eels ate the lot. But then if I worked around, come up with the net on a bit of a beach there, I caught quite a lot of fish there, quite a lot.

Contributed By
(Excerpt from interview with Mr Charles Wilson for the 'Looking back at Liverpool : an oral history of the Liverpool region 1900-1960' conducted in 1986 by Liverpool City Council, editor and project co-ordinator Catherine Johnson; researchers Angela Imbrosciano, Verica Miiosavijevic, Kathleen Smith)