Monday, October 8, 2012

Darlinghurst Blog: Past and Present: French Photographie

I was contacted last week by a Frenchman Marc Coetmellec who emailed me three photographs his father had taken of Darlinghurst in the 1960s. They have never been published before, so I am very pleased that Marc sent them to me to include on my petite blogette. The photographie is fantastique.
This first one, looking down William Street, shows the original Bar Coluzzi on the left. 
There is a similar photograph in the City of Sydney Archives, which shows the cafe proprietor standing at its doorstep. 

The scene today is quite different as the road was realigned in the 1970s for the Kings Cross Tunnel, Sydney's first road tunnel according to this website.

Marc's father, Jean-Yves Coetmellec, visited Australia frequently in the 1960s as a merchant seaman on board the Tahitien (do click on the link to see a photograph of this lovely ship). 
Jean-Yves was a mecanicien, or mechanic, with the French maritime company Messageries Maritimes (again, click on the link to see the beautiful old shipping posters).

The Tahitien would have docked at Woolloomooloo so Jean-Yves would have been well placed to explore the local area, including Darlinghurst and Kings Cross. I wonder what the Frenchman thought of Sydney in the 1960s. And would he be interested to see what the area in these photographs looks like today:

Marc said he had many more photographs of Sydney taken by his father and he promises to email them to me. I can't wait to see them and will publish them here as soon as I can.


Ralf. said...

Tres beauty photos mon ami.
Could Violet please pick up some "fine flakes of tuna"(fancy feast) next time she's down the shops. They're usually on special and taste real good, and come highly recommended.

Nicole W said...

Wow. Love the feeling of space compared to today.

Gareth said...

The roads look crazy!

Lithopsland said...

Love the b&w photos, such a nice contrast (& the today photos are excellent too!). Umm, are they tram or just electricity wires in the sky, or both?

Anonymous said...

No tram tracks on the intersection so looks more like electricity and support for the intersection lamps (being a wide intersection)

Also interesting to see the TV/radio tower behind the fire station seemingly somewhere on Victoria St. Wonder where that sat and when it was removed.

Violet Tingle said...

I didn't notice that tower in the background: Good observations anonymous. It looks enormously tall. I wonder where it was located.