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Denis W. Martin SJ

Some favorite books by T.B. Macaulay, and memories of Archbishop Duhig...

READERSVOICE.COM: What kind of books do you like to read?

DENIS W. MARTIN SJ: I never read fiction, always history and biography. The Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution seem to interest me most, especially the coming of the steam ship and railways. I enjoy reading T. B. Macaulay, especially his essays and biographies.
To get my hands dirty I maintain two wonderful old pieces of machinery: two early motor cars, viz. a 1905 De Dion-Bouton and a 1907 Darracq.
[Macaulay’s books include his The History of England, which is available in the Penguin Classics paperback series; and Critical and Historical Essays (1843). One of Lord Macaulay’s famous quotes is: I would rather be poor in a cottage full of books than a king without the desire to read.]

RV: Your book A Hill in the Valley mentions many of the prominent identities in Brisbane history, especially Catholic history. Have you met people who knew any of them personally?

DM: As a schoolboy I often saw Archbishop Duhig about at functions and schools. When living at “Wynberg” [in Brunswick St, New Farm] one felt his presence still even though he had been dead for a few years. The house is quite different now, as one would expect.
T. C. Beirne was a household name. The older generations of my family knew him when he travelled out through Dalby, St George and Goondiwindi taking mail orders as he built up his business. He died about the time I was born.
Old Father McGoldrick retained a very clear memory of Archbishop Dunne and Duhig and the old house “Dara”. He [Fr McGoldrick} once owned a very rare car that would be in a museum today – a Roamer of c. 1920.

RV: Do you have any questions still about the Holy Name Cathedral?

DM: The big question remains: Was the H.N. Cathedral all a big mistake?

– see A Hill in the Valley: Dara and the Holy Name Cathedral by Denis W. Martin SJ. 64 pages with photographs and illustrations.
– copyright readersvoice.com