Mar and Mar: a tale of two Chinese gardeners at Winton

Robb, Sandi (2012) Mar and Mar: a tale of two Chinese gardeners at Winton. In: Hoy, Kevin Wong, and Rains, Kevin, (eds.) Rediscovered Past: valuing Chinese across the north. Chinese Heritage in Northern Australia Inc., Melbourne, VIC, Australia, pp. 36-46.

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The last operating, Chinese market garden was established at \Vinton in 1927 and ceased in 2000. It was worked by two generations of Chinese owners, father and son, both known as Willie Mar. Well patronised and subject to the harsh, western Queensland conditions, Willie Mar's market garden and shop became well-known and highly regarded for its produce and unique, pond-watering system. Hard working and humble by nature, both owners were locally popular, leaving an indelible impression on the community. The death of the younger Willie Mar in 2007 ended 124 years of Chinese activity as cooks, gardeners, shepherds and labourers in this locality. The story of the lives of Mar and Mar reveals a tale of endurance, separation, hardship and a commitment to etching out a life in a small, western Queensland town. Commencing in 1897 with the arrival of the father and ending with the somewhat recent death of the son, this tale contains adventure, creating one's own source of income and managing 'family' relations from afar. Today, the fonner market garden, dwelling and shop site is a significant, tangible expression of their lives, and also serves as a reminder of the broader contribution Chinese cooks and market gardeners made to the pastoral districts and towns of Queensland's central north¬west.

Item ID: 55097
Item Type: Book Chapter (Scholarly Work)
ISBN: 978-0-9804027-3-5
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Date Deposited: 21 Aug 2018 03:40
FoR Codes: 21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2103 Historical Studies > 210303 Australian History (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History) @ 80%
20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200211 Postcolonial Studies @ 20%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950503 Understanding Australias Past @ 100%
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