2nd November 1961
To Head Teacher,
Public school , Cooranbong
I believe you are celebrating the centenary of opening of Cooranbong School next Sunday. I am sending my congratulations and hoping you will have a glorious day's sport.
I was born at Cooranbong School residence in 1880 (April 24th). My father Mr. John Joseph Farrell was head teacher. From my very early days I can remember little except two names, Woodbead and Russell (the local storekeeper).
The chief industries I remember were Cooranbong: Timber Wollombi: wool (the wool was shorn from wattle trees.) I am pleased to see you ar giving prominence to our grand old pioneer, the bullock team. I have had many stories of their performances, encouraged by picturesque language.
One I remember: a driver was prepared to stake his all on his team being the toughest in Australia. The bullocks were having a spell at the time and the driver a holiday at the hotel. Suddenly a heavy hand fell on his shoulder. "Hughie" said a voice, "Get back and check up on those friends of yours. I'll bet we just had one of them for dinner......"
Regretting I have a poor chance of being present. i am hoping you will have a splendid time, and (if our ghosts are permitted to walk,) to see an even better one in 2061A.D
You may make use of this letter. Kindest regards to all old residents of my day and generations since.
Thomas Leo Farrell