"Australia's National Anthem"
Composed by Harry Lyall Folley (1886-1967) just prior to World War Two
is an indication of the patriotism of Australians at the time and the
sense of urgency that we needed something special in a time of threat
and uncertainty but the royalist references would not be considered
politically correct now. This composition was acknowledged by
King George VI, The Governor General of Australia and Prime Minister
John Curtin. (news clipping below)
Minister Gough Witlam declared "Advance Australia Fair" (1878) to be
Australia's national song 1n 1974 when a national poll revealed 51.4%
preferred it but he was unable to call it our anthem
because the name was held in copywrite. After Harry's
death, The "Australian National Anthem and Flag Quests Committee"
approached his wife, Hilda May
Folley (1894-1981) who was in early stages of senile dementia and who
released the copyright, therefore releasing the
title. Even then, there was no immediate decision and it was not
until the 19th of April, 1984 that Advance Australia Fair was declared
Australia's National Anthem by the Governor General, Sir Ninian
Stephen. National Archives of Australia information sheets
Harry, (my grandfather) also published two short books of poetry, Secrets of Silence First Edition 1921 and Uncle Roger and other Poems c1946. All three documents are in the National Library of Australia.
From this time forward, under God, I pledge my loyalty to Australia and its people, whose democratic beliefs I share, whose rights and liberties I respect, and whose laws I will uphold and obey.
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