Horace Lindrum, Walter Lindrum, Fredrick II, Fredrick III
‘The Lindrums were a family of champions, mainly in billiards and snooker, but also in primary industry (winemaking) and entertainment (dixie-land jazz and the big wheeled bicycle).’
The first member of the Lindrum family to arrive in Australia was my great-great grandfather Friedrich Wilhelm Von Lindrum. He arrived as a passenger aboard a tiny ship in 1849 carrying with him two skills; his billiard playing and his winemaking; but it was his billiard playing that would be first put to the test. His win against the great British champion John Roberts Snr., signalled the start of the Lindrum legend; five world-class champions in the same discipline in only four generations; my father, Horace Lindrum was the last member of the Lindrum billiard playing aristocracy.
Australia’s first professional billiard champion, his win against the great British Champion John Roberts Snr signalled the Lindrum Legend,
five world-class champions in only four generations
Friedrich was also the winner of Australia’s first International Gold Medal for South Australian Shiraz, London 1873 and Australia’s
first Brandy Judge, Paris 1874
He was known to chalk the floor and insist that his sons stand in the one spot practising a specific billiard shot over and over and over again until their backs ached and then he would tell them
to begin again. The Lindrum practise regime was 8-10 hours per day, 7 days per week.
1886 Frederick married Harriet Atkins at Hawke Street Registry Office Melbourne
Harriet already had a two-year-old Florence Lilian born 01-12-1884
Three children born post the marriage.
Frederick William Lindrum III
Clara (Violet) Lindrum
Walter Albert Lindrum
Married Augusta (killed)
One son F W Lindrum IV (deceased)
Violet was a brilliant pianist who accompanied stars in Nellie Melba’s Opera Circle, including Toti Dal Monte, Galle Curci and Enzo du Muro Lomanto. In her teenage years, Polish pianist/composer Jan Iganacy Paderewski told her parents: “Your daughter is the genius in
the Lindrum family”.
In 1921 Violet accompanied US Jazz star Pauline Cohan and her Bottom Wigglers and the following year established Australia’s first Dixie-land jazz band in the Oxford Hall in Paddington.
A decade later, she established Lindrum’s Billiard Room in the Mechanics Institute in Goulburn and went on to manage her son’s billiard room Lindrum’s in Pitt Street, Sydney, which was hailed by journalist/author Dr Rudolph Brasch as: “The Finest Billiard Room in the World”.
Dr Brasch also dubbed Violet’s son Horace as:
“The Greatest Showman the World has ever seen”.
Violet brought up her son, almost singlehandedly, with the help of her parents.
From the annals of history:
‘Billiards’ Championship of the World by Sir Joynton Smith
“We have been regaled with world’s championships in different sports within the last few months – mainly in the open field. We are very shortly to see the world’s championship at English billiards with Walter Lindrum of Australia, Joe Davis of England and Clark McConachy of New Zealand (3 competitors). The event is to be deterred at the Tivoli Hall in Melbourne. The baulk-line rule is now operative, its purpose being to limit the ‘professors’ compiling their big breaks by means of delicate moves along the wings (as they say in football), with the cushion as the touchline in Rugby. A clever young tike in London the other day stated the close-cannon game is no good for billiards and that it is not appreciated by the spectators. Possibly that is so when the youth is manipulating the cue.But if you see any of the three artists who are to compete in this championship, running a swift break along the cushion, you can do nothing other than to fall into the pool of admiration for their exquisite ability.”
The effort it needs to achieve perfection at this level is best compared to the human effort needed to become a virtuoso ( an individual who possesses outstanding technical ability in a particular art or field of arts, such as fine arts, acting, music, singing, playing a musical instrument, composition, juggling, magician ship, painting, puppetry, fashion design, makeup design, the art of clowning,( the circus arts and so on.)
My great-uncle Walter and I were great friends and I hold dear to the memory of the man who walked down the hallway at the former family home in Albert Park, Victoria, on Christmas mornings with a barrel of sweets under his arm singing: “I am the little boy that Santa Claus forgot”. Walter grew up in the days when children were happy playing with empty butter containers, string and any other bits and pieces they could scrounge.
1933/34 After winning the world title, uncle Walter returned to Australia a disillusioned man.The governing body banned the nursery cannon; a stroke that had taken him a lifetime to perfect.Men in the trade who had promised to turn his talent into dollars had turned their back on him. Penniless and owing money, he summoned all the courage that any of us can summon when faced with adversity, and used the singular thing available to him to turn his fortunes around: His incredible talent with a cue.My great-uncle and my father Horace were the greatest of friends.As a child I remember them coming from opposite doors into the hallway and bumping into each other; Walter not knowing Horace was having an afternoon nap and Horace not knowing Walter was having an afternoon nap.
I felt the LOVE within my family and my childhood memories have served me well.
Walter was not one for parties and he had come to know all there was to know about‘cosmetic handshakes’. It is thus understandable that when his wife called a party, he went to bed. How he slept with all the noise, goodness only knows. If asked to entertain at the table, he would respond: “Horace will do that for me.” And that is exactly what Horace did because the Lindrums were raised to support each other through thick and thin.
Married Rosie Coates (early death), Married Alicia (divorced), Married Beryl Elaine (1953)
Horace married Joyce Doreen White 5 July 1949.
Prior to her marriage Joy was seconded by the Foreign Office and dispatched to Bletchley Park where the British broke the Nazi codes. Post the war she took up a position as organising secretary of the
British Association & Control Council (the Governing Body established by John Roberts Snr. and Lord Kitchener). Her father was a gunner for the Royal Air Force during WWI and served with distinction. After the war, he married widow, hairdresser and beautician Rozemai White. Rozemai’s first husband was killed in a desert flank attack. She had one daughter, Dorrie (Joy’s step-sister). During WWII Arthur Puxley White was a meat supervisor at Smithfield markets, her great-uncle was Field Marshal Sir George White, the defender of Ladysmith. Joy’s great-great-uncle was the author of Treatise on Billiards.