Launceston Historical Society Talk
February 16 @ 2:00 pm
Mike McCausland will speak on: William Lushington Goodwin – controversial publisher of the Cornwall Chronicle.
W L Goodwin had a colourful & varied career, with at least three distinct stages: seaman & ship’s captain, then a controversial Launceston newspaper proprietor & editor, and finally a responsible – perhaps most respectable – public figure whose indiscretions were largely forgiven.
Goodwin claimed in the Cornwall Chronicle to be exposing corruption & abuse of power, but to many he was a turbulent, at times violent man given to using his editorial columns for bitter personal attacks upon those with prestige & authority.
This mismatch between stated principles & practice are repeated in the inconsistencies between accounts he gave of his achievements & the reality. This talk attempts to separate fact from claim in the light of evidence now available, acknowledging that there’s much more to be learned of this contradictory, but not wholly unattractive figure from Launceston’s past.
As a member of the community group Friends of the Launceston Mechanics’ Institute, Mike McCausland has been involved in the attempt to preserve and publicise the LMI’s library, collected between 1842 & 1945, and now recognised as of national significance. His interest in W L Goodwin was piqued by the Cornwall Chronicle’s barrage of invective against the fledgling Institute & its proponents.
All welcome. Admission is free for members, $4.00 for visitors. Afternoon tea will be served.
Includes Annual General Meeting.