For the last 115 years,The Recorder has been Port Pirie's primary news source.
It has been 115 great years of sharing news with readers and in more modern times, capturing those special moments in photographs and online.
1900: Lead wheel workers pictured at the smelters around the time The Recorder was first published.
1920: Ellen Street in the early 20th century was dominated by the old Town Hall and Barrier Hotel, both buildings which have since been torn down.
1926: Port Pirie Technical School was built in Mary Elie Street at a cost of $20,000 to cater for more than 690 students who enrolled as part of their apprentice training. The building is now part of the amalgamated John Pirie Secondary School.
1934: Locals line up along the banks of The Terrace, at the corner of York Road, during the worst flood in the city’s history.
1934: The balcony of the Pantheon Club on Florence Street became a refuge during the flood that devastated Port Pirie.
1938: The east-west train at the Solomontown rail junction. Solomontown had the distinction of being serviced by all three rail gauges, resulting in the frequent transfer of goods and passengers between lines.
1946: Beautiful statuary, irreplaceable memorial stained-glass windows, oil paintings of the Stations of the Cross and other objects of piety were destroyed in the fire at St Mark’s Church and hall.
1948: Horses and carts were still used at the wharf to load ore bound for overseas.
1950: Prests’ Ltd. with some of their merchandise presented on cars at the front of their store.
1963: Trucks laden with sacks of barley line up before the silos were built in 1968.
1963: The train that took workers and their families to the Smelters Picnic in the days when it was held in Crystal Brook. The event is still widely celebrated in Pirie, where it now takes place in Memorial Park, and many businesses close for half a day.
1964: Brian and John Condon at Moyle’s ice factory. Ice was home delivered if you left a white flag on your front fence, but most picked it up from the factory in a sugar bag in the hot weather.
1967: In July, a large crowd witnessed the last steam train to carry passengers down Ellen Street. The train tracks were later removed to an area alongside the wharf.
1967: Archbishop Enrici blessed a wing of the new St Mark’s High School. About 250 people gathered in the school’s quadrangle for the solemn opening, including the Bishop of Port Pirie, the Most Reverend Dr B. Gallagher; mayor, H.B. Welch; and the Member for Pirie in the House of Assembly, D.H. McKee.
1968: The once familiar horse-drawn baker’s cart disappeared from Port Pirie streets in November when Goldtop Bakeries switched to motorised delivery.
1969: BHAS workers were busy at the wharf loading lead onto ships.
1970: The Ozone Theatre was a local favourite from its establishment in the 1930s, up until it was brought down in the 1980s to make way for the current Port Pirie Regional Council offices.
1970: On October 28, a famous cricket match was played at Memorial Oval between an SA Country XI that included six Pirieans and the English side that went on to win the Ashes 2-0. Back row: C. Weeks, P. Connor, W. Hull, B. Hutchinson, T. Calaby, A. Crompton and umpire A. Crocker; front row: R. Sawyer, G. Norris, T. Faehse, J. Kernahan and K. Manning.
1970: Monday morning at Solomontown beach during the beach carnival. Many of the buildings present at the time, including a kiosk and a stage, have since been demolished.
1973: An airscrew damaged in a flight from England to Australia, and later repaired, was donated to Port Pirie City Council in June by world record-breaking aviator Trevor Brougham of Des’ Aviation, Whyalla. He was pictured with the mayor, E. Connelly, and town clerk, R.W. Fullgrabe, after it had been attached to the waiting room wall at the new Port Pirie Airport.
1973: BHAS workers leave the smelter in the years before the present stack was built.
1980: Built at a cost of $410,000 and opened on March 21, the John Pirie Bridge was intended to encourage development on the northern bank of the Pirie River, but was derided with a name that has stuck for more than 30 years: the “bridge to nowhere”.
1983: On April 6, Mayor W.G. Jones and tens of thousands of others welcomed the Prince and Princess of Wales, Charles and Diana, to Memorial Oval after a parade through the streets of Port Pirie.
1990: Actor Keith Michell, originally of Warnertown, returned to the theatre that bears his name to launch Port Pirie Proud, a promotional video. He was the first to perform there after it was opened in November 1982.
1991: Photographer Des Parker published an anthology of stories from his “Nosey Parker” column. He has been a fixture at The Recorder and around Pirie for longer than anyone else can remember, having begun selling papers outside the smelter’s gates in 1943.
1997: The Recorder’s “Last Round-Up” marked the end of the Festival of Country Music in October. Pictured were Jedd Hughes, Aubrey Beggs, Steven Bunz, Michael Godfrey, Alison Hams, Cactus Martens, Gus Ferguson, Debra Giles, Bob Charman, Marilyn Monogios, Trish Wilson and Martin Beggs.
1997: On October 9, former Solomontown footballer and apprentice at the smelters Mark Bickley visited his home town after captaining Adelaide to its first-ever grand final win.
1998: The Recorder’s longest-serving employee Des Parker, manager Marilyn Monogios and Rural Press Limited chairman John B. Fairfax cut a cake to mark the newspaper’s 100th birthday at a gala dinner on July 11.
2008: Port Pirie’s new skate park, 4Shore Sk8, was opened to the public on July 13. Mike Peake was one of the first to perform a backflip on his BMX.
2010: Corey Bellifemini, Sam Pisani, Sav DeGiglio, Frank and Phillip Amato and Anthony Fasciano were accompanied by two costumed Caribinieri for the annual Blessing of the Fleet. The procession and accompanying festivities are traditions that originated in Molfetta, Italy, 800 years ago; and only a handful of other cities worldwide continue to celebrate them.
How does a newspaper stand the test of time? By breaking news stories, brilliant photographs and great contributors.
In our special 115-year coverage, we bring you profiles on two of The Recorder's best contributors, a history lesson on how The Recorder started and a photo gallery showcasing Port Pirie's rich history.
Learn how well-known historian, photographer, Recorder delivery driver and contributor Des Parker started his career in newspapers
Read about The Recorder's rich history in the Spencer Gulf city of Port Pirie
Pastor Ern Heyne has been a voice for the people with his My Say column since 1973. Find out more here
Plus see Then and Now: Port Pirie through the years to see how the city we serve has grown up
The story Celebrating 115 years of The Recorder in Port Pirie first appeared on The Recorder.