A busy day for the publican of the SA Clubhouse Hotel at Port Adelaide in 1926.
'SAVED FROM DEATH RESCUED IN PORT RIVER
Diamonds Lost and Recovered
Diving from the railing of Jervois Bridge, Port Adelaide, this afternoon, Mr. A. J. McCawley (licensee of the Clubhouse Hotel) rescued Mr. Robert Hunter, who was in difficulties in the water. This is the second occasion in less than a month that Hunter has been saved from the Port River. He was arrested when brought ashore today and will appear before the Port Adelaide Police Court on a charge of drunkenness. Mr. McCawley was at his hotel, which, overlooks Jervois Bridge, about 2 o'clock this afternoon when told by a lad that a man was in the river. He rushed out of the hotel on to the bridge and saw Mr. Hunter in midstream slightly below the surface.
Diving into the water fully clothed, Mr. McCawley succeeded in swimming with Hunter, who was a heavy man, to the piling near the bridge, and supported him there until a boat was secured. It was stated that although there were several persons on the bridge they did not appear to make any effort to save the man.
On getting ashore Mr. McCawley found that a wallet containing diamond rings valued by him at £600 had worked out of a trousers pocket. A number of bank notes were safe in his pocket, although sodden with water. Mr. Bert Harris, of Glanville, offered to dive for the jewellery and succeeded in recovering the diamonds after a short time. The river is about 25 ft. deep at this place and the bottom is muddy. Mr. McCawley considers that he is lucky in getting the rings back again. He rewarded Mr. Harris with £10. Mr. McCawley already holds an award from the Royal Humane Society, for he was one of the party which went into the forecastle of the burning steamer City of Singapore and assisted at great risk to bring to safety Mr. Jack Keys (engineer), who was badly scalded as a result of the explosion.'
The News, Saturday 4 September 1926, p1
The photograph shows St Vincent Street, Port Adelaide, after woodblocking in, 1926. The view is towards the Jervois bridge with McCawley's SA Clubhouse Hotel, which was at 8 St Vincent Street on the east corner of Formby Parade. The building shown here was built in 1878 and has been demolished.
The hotel was known as the Australian Clubhouse from 1869 to 1888 and then the Australasian Clubhouse until 1912. In his book Hotels and publicans in South Australia, Bob Hoad writes: 'The Australian Clubhouse was originally in a galvanised iron building know locally as the Sardine Tin'.
Emily M. McCawley, was the licensee from March 1926 to March 1927.