Gordon’s big cycle ride

Now she has read the book, William Baker Tyzack and descendants in Australia Marian, a great great granddaughter of William, had alerted me to a story I wrote in the chapter on Harold Gordon Tyzack (Gordon).  Marian tells me my grandfather Gordon never rode from Hopetoun to Maldon, nor from Colac to Maldon.  However, apparently he did cycle from Melbourne to Maldon.  Early last century the distance was probably in excess of 160 km.

The purpose of Gordon’s ride was to court his future wife, Louisa Caroline Crayford who lived with her mother in the gold mining town of Maldon.  Gordon and Louisa married on the 3rd September 1912.

The date of Gordon’s ride is unknown and it is challenging to determine when he might have made the trip.  We know Gordon left his work as a law clerk in Hopetoun in December 1911.  A newspaper of the time reported he was going to Melbourne.

To cycle from Melbourne to Maldon would have been a gruelling adventure. If Gordon rode in summer then the inland temperatures may have been 40 degrees or more. If in winter, bleak, rainy and windy weather would have made life miserable.  Was his cycle trip madness or was he simply blinded by love? If indeed he made this trip, clearly Gordon’s golf and other sporting interests had kept his fitness level high.

No records have been located to determine whether Gordon went to Melbourne or what he was doing in the first part of 1912. However, all indications are that he was living in Colac over 150 kms west from Melbourne for some of the year before he married.  Another option might have been that he took a train from Colac to Melbourne, stayed overnight with his parents in Washington St Essendon and then cycled north to Maldon the next day. Did he cycle back to Melbourne or catch the train before returning to Colac?

Does any other family member have recollections to further clarify this mystery?



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