FLASHBACK FRIDAY: CORONATION FAIR, 1902
As Royal Fever continues to sweep across the world ahead of the Royal Wedding tomorrow, we thought we’d take you back to 1902 and the Coronation of King Edward VII, when the residents of Berrigan got caught up in the Royal celebration.
When Queen Victoria died on 22 January 1901, Edward became King of the United Kingdom, Emperor of India and, in an innovation, King of the British Dominions. His coronation was originally scheduled for 26 June 1902, however, just two days before, he was diagnosed with appendicitis, and his coronation indefinitely postponed. Developments in anesthesia and antisepsis in the 50 years prior had made the life-saving surgery possible, and Edward was sitting up in bed, smoking a cigar, the day after surgery.
Although the coronation itself had been postponed, the festivities in Berrigan still went ahead. The following appeared in the Jerilderie Herald & Urana Advertiser on Friday 4 July, 1902:
“A procession composed mostly of school children, and sprinkled with a few whimsical fancy dresses marched to the show ground where a picnic was held. During the afternoon, the Berrigan orchestra and some local performers and nigger minstrels gave an open air performance on the ground. An obstacle race, a tug-of-war, and some children’s races also took place. In the evening, two dances were held, on in the Theatre Royal, and the other in the School of Arts, the former of which was crowded. A very good display of fireworks was also given.” The picnic, along with one of the dances, was being conducted by the Progress Association, with £20 netted from the day’s outing.
Edward was eventually crowned on 9 August 1902, and the town once again celebrated the crowning of the new King, with a Coronation Fair held in the middle of September. The three-day event, held in School of Arts, was in aid of the funds for the Church of England. The following article appeared in the Jerilderie Herald & Urana Advertiser on Friday 19 September, 1902. #BerriganMuseum #BerriganMuseum #BerriganHeritageMuseum #KingEdwardVII #CoronationDay #history #RoyalHistory #newsouthwales #southernriverina #flashbackfriday