Marie Georga

Marie Georga

The Blue Mountain Echo |  Fri 1 Feb 1924  |  Page 6

Sad Death

The small, but highly respected Greek Colony of Katoomba, on Sunday last was plunged into mourning by the death, after a short illness from pneumonia, of Marie Georga, the 15-year-old niece of the brothers Poulos, proprietors of the ‘Niagara’ Cafe, Main Street, Katoomba.
Marie was a native of Sirigo, one of the Grecian Archepelago — of which Mrs. Hemans sang as ‘the land whereon beauty smiles’ — near Athens.
She came to Katoomba about 18 months ago to permanently reside, with her uncles and aunt. Of a gentle unassuming nature, Marie soon accustomed herself to her new surroundings and made friends within and without her own community, and had acquired a fair grasp of the English language, with a quantitative accent, which added to a naturally quiet a harm of manner. In the absence of a Greek Church
at Katoomba, the Archbishop of Sydney readily granted permission for the funeral service to be held at St. Hilda’s Church of England, a
most Impressive service being conducted by Rev. Father Archimandrite Athonageras Varakias, pastor of the Greek Orthodox Church, Sydney.
The service was of a national or Byzantine character, consisting of prolonged chanting of prayers by the pastor. The ceremony — the
impressiveness of which was intensified by the presence on the chancel of the body, encased in a simple white coffin of embossed decorative design and chaste silver mountings — concluded by the members of the family and near relatives paying their last homage according to national custom,
the features of deceased being visible through a glass panel inlaid at the head of the coffin.
As the cortege left the church for the Katoomba cemetery (Church of England section) both sides of Katoomba Street were lined with sympathetic friends. The coffin, conveyed by motor hearse, was strewn with violets, sweet peas and snapdragon, and bore a number of wreaths from the family and local friends.
Present at the graveside were Messers. Peter, John and James and Mrs. Poulos, uncles and aunt; Messrs. Peter Venardo and Peter Mar
oney, Mrs. Bernard Astles, Nurse Campbell, and the whole of the ‘Niagara’ staff and many local followers.
The funeral arrangements were conducted by Wood, Coffill, Ltd.
Two years prior to her passing the Blue Mountain Echo was announcing her arrival from Greece and welcoming the bright-featured, modest little lass of fourteen to the Mountains.
Friday 30 June 1922 | The Blue Mountain Echo | Page 3

“Maid of Athens” Arrives at Katoomba

Miss Marie Georga niece of Messrs Poulos Bros of the “Niagara” arrived from Greece on Tuesday. Miss Georga is a bright-featured, modest little lass of fourteen. Once accustomed to her surroundings she develops a vivacity which is rendered all the more charming by reason of her, as yet, imperfect English-speaking tongue. She hails from Cirigo, one of the islands to which the old English ballad “the White Squall” refers to as the “land whereon beauty smiles; the sunny shores of the Grecian Isles”. It is twelve years since Messrs Poulos Bros left their native shore to settle in Australia. Marie was then a toddling tot and the excitement of the uncles of her arrival can well be understood when it is remembered that she is the first of their kith and kin they have set eyes on since they left home.

Marie is not exactly a stranger to the Mountains; she knows them well in theory as there is not a book of views published about the Hills that she has not been supplied with and a regular correspondence with her uncles and periodical copies of “The Echo” have, in a measure familiarised her with the place. She voyaged on board with “Largs Bay” one of the Commonwealth Line of steamers, chaperoned by two Grecian ladies who were visiting Australia. “After being at sea so long, I cannot tell you my emotions when first I caught sight of the shores of Australia”, she said. After arriving at Freemantle, the voyage dragged. It seemed to be so near, yet so far from Katoomba. I am just dying to see all those beautiful falling waters my uncles have told me about. I do not much feel your cold; it is delightful and I am sure I shall like my new home.

We welcome to the Mountains this “Maid of Athens”.