University anniversaries

Jubilee celebrations 1902

The Undergraduates' Association's garden party, 2 October 1902

On the afternoon of Thursday 2 October 1902 the Undergraduates' Association held a garden party in the tennis courts behind the main building, attended by around 1,000 guests. Marquees had been erected and University buildings were open for inspection. The teaching staff was fully represented, with academic gowns of staff and students mingling with the dresses and outfits of the visitors. The arrangements were controlled by the joint secretaries, Messrs J Manning and S L Cook of the Undergraduates' Association.

The following are images from the University of Sydney Archives, the Sydney Mail and various publications from the Australian National University:

Click on images for enlargement.

The Undergraduates garden party

Groups of guests, photo, University of Sydney Archives

The Undergraduates garden party

The Vice-Chancellor, Mr Justice Simpson (centre), photo, The Australasian, 11 October 1902, National Library of Australia

The Undergraduates garden party

Mr Manning, Professor Butler and Mrs Butler, photo, The Australasian, 11 October 1902, National Library of Australia

The Undergraduates garden party

Mr D O'Connor, photo, The Australasian, 11 October 1902, National Library of Australia

The Undergraduates garden party

Coming through the Arch: The Chancellor, Sir Norman MacLaurin and the Governor, Sir Harry Rawson, who arrived at 4.00pm, photo, The Australasian, 11 October 1902, National Library of Australia

The Undergraduates garden party

Photo G3_224_MF374_0261, University of Sydney Archives

The Undergraduates garden party

Image, 'Australian Town and Country Journal', 8 October 1902, National Library of Australia

The Undergraduates garden party

Photo, The Sydney Mail, 8 October 1902, Google News Archive.

The Undergraduates garden party

Photo, The Sydney Mail, 8 October 1902, Google News Archive.

The Undergraduates garden party

Photo, The Australasian, 11 October 1902, National Library of Australia


Although the weather looked threatening, it did not prevent holders of invitation cards from attending in large numbers, nor did it interfere with the arrangements.

The visitors began to arrive shortly before 3 o'clock, and as they entered the porch in the centre of the main building, they were received by Mr S A Smith, the President of the Undergraduates' Association. They then filed through onto the lawn at the rear, which quickly presented a very gay and festive appearance.

Refreshments were served in a couple of marquees.

All the branches of the university, including the chemical, medical, physics, geological, and engineering departments, were open for inspection.

The band of the RAA Band played popular music during the afternoon.

Soon a brisk wind drove up some black, threatening clouds, which threatened the dresses of voile and muslin. Then, when a few drops of rain began to fall, the guests hastily took refuge in marquees and vestibules, and the Great Hall. However, there was only a slight shower, and the garden party was not spolt.

The State Governor, Sir Harry Rawson, Lady Rawson and Miss Rawson, attended by Captain Clark, ADC, arrived at about 4 pm, and were welcomed by the executive of the Undergraduates' Association. The company included the Chancellor Sir Normand MacLaurin and Lady MacLaurin, the Vice-Chancellor Mr Justice A Simpson, Judge Backhouse, Judge Docker, Professors MacCallum, Anderson Stuart, Warren, Anderson, David and Liversidge, Dr Wilkinson, Mr Barff (Registrar of the University) and the visiting delegates.