Alice in the late 1920s
Alice Springs served a wider pastoral community but until the war, was very small. The Kilgariff family came to Alice in 1929 when the town was one street:
Because Oodnadatta used to be the rail-head for many years in South Australia, and eventually as the train – the Old Ghan – found its way into Alice Springs in 1929, it was quite interesting to see the number of old Ooodnadatta people who picked up their houses – literally picked up some of their houses – and shifted to Alice Springs, because that was the rail-head. This was the new chance. This is where Wallis Fogarty’s and the other places gradually put in their general stores, to supply the people in the bush.
I might say too, I guess, about that time, the first bank came to Alice Springs – maybe a little later, the ES&A Bank – and so that was opposite the Stuart Arms Hotel, in an old tin building. That was in Todd Street. In those days there were some magnificent old river gums in Todd Street, and there was on huge one outside the front, or the side of the ES&A Bank, which regularly – one of its boughs fell on the bank and gave it a bit of a squash.
[Northern Territory Archives Service NTRS 226, TS 1130 and NTRS 1815, DAT163, Bern Kilgariff AM]