TONY TERAKES


2004-2005 ORAL HISTORY INTERVIEWS

TONY TERAKES

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Collector’s note:

Tony Terakes is a typical Crete/Greek market man. He has worked at the Sydney Markets for most of his life and tells the collector the ins and outs and the betweens of market life. His other passion was gambling and he goes into detail about the way horseracing works. He is also a traditional cook and regularly cooks Greek dishes for his family and friends. He also talks about his position as a Greek Australian.

Recorded Chatswood, NSW

1 Dec 2004

(there is some tape interference because of faulty lines)

TAPE 1 and TAPE 2

Born in West End, Brisbane. Is 78 years of age. His parents from Crete “Where the good Greeks come from”

Talks about family in Brisbane and then moving to Lismore (1934) where he ran the fruit shop and also became a licensed bookmaker.

Talks about the fruit business. Moved back to Brisbane and then, in 1940, back to Lismore permanently. Dad became successful at bookmaker.

Tony first came to Sydney in 1943 and in 1945 went into the fruit business. I was going to be an architect but ended up a fruit bum.
Came to live in Sydney working at markets and lived with uncle.

Got a bookmakers license at aged 21 to work the upper Grafton area but didn’t make much money so returned to Sydney. I became a runner for my uncle’s bookmaking business. I was a good ‘penciller’ at Randwick, Warwick Farm, Rose Hill etc.

Discusses importance of track information – watching horses work etc

Discusses Old Charlie who lived on Rum and Milk – that was his food.

Discusses old Ultimo Road Markets and how vegetables came in and went out. Everything came in loose.

Discusses characters at markets and crooks he has met.

Talks about the northern beer train that he used to send produce up the Richmond River before if silted up. The train then took everything to the Northern Rivers.

Discusses gambling at the markets.

Talks about daily routine as market man.

Talks about ethnic mix.

Talks about being Greek/Crete –

Discusses Greek food.

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