Cole believed that Albury should be the Federal Capital of Australia, and in around 1898 produced a booklet of 32 pages entitled Greater Melbourne and the Federal Capital. On the last page he lists
Twenty Reasons why Albury should be the Federal Capital
- It is near the centre of Australian population.
- It is on the main line of railway connecting the four principal capitals.
- It is on the principal river in Australia.
- It is on the border of the two principal colonies.
- It is between the two principal cities.
- It is far enough from the seaboard to be safe from sudden invasion.
- It is a splendid district for sheep, cattle and horses.
- It produces corn, wine, fruit, and flowers in abundance.
- It is a splendid tree-growing district, for for use and ornament.
- It has a never-failing water-supply for all purposes.
- It has splendid brick-clay, granite, freestone, etc., for building.
- The site is picturesque, beautiful and unique.
- It has a beautiful portion of land and water for a Federal Park.
- It is in the temperate region of Australia.
- It has a healthy, equable, and pleasant climate.
- It is near the highest mountains and the greatest number of streams in Australia.
- It is convenient to the fertile Riverina and the rich Murray Valley.
- Because Sir Hercules Robinson, the greatest governor, and Sir Henry Parkes, the greatest statesman, of New South Wales, both recommended it as the most suitable site for the Federal Capital.
- Because there is no other site on the Australian continent that has so many points in its favour, in all main essentials, as this one.
- It would be a fair and peaceful compromise between conflicting claims, and consequently permanently satisfactory.
Never one to miss an opportunity, Cole saw the Federation of Australia as a step towards World Federation, and on the same page 32 under the title Onward Steps, he declared:
And now I would beg pardon of the reader, for obtruding a few words on what may be considered by some as foreign to the subject – the coming Federation of the Whole World, but I cannot lose this opportunity. I love Australian Federation because it is good in itself, and also because it is a step towards the greater Federation; and in spite of all the armaments and the feverish selfishness of the world, I see it as coming. The trend of men’s minds is towards Federation, progress, and peace, and the first step is towards forging larger and larger governments.
A full transcript of Cole’s 678 word mini-essay Onward Steps is available here.
The caption to this illustration on pages 28 and 29 of the pamphlet reads:
View showing the towns of Wodonga and Albury taken from the Victorian side, also the intercolonial railway and the old Sydney road crossing the river at right angles; and also the Wodonga Creek, or ana-branch of the Murray, and the surrounding hills of the country. This being a bird’s eye view, the amphitheatre-like appearance cannot be seen so well, but the view is perfect to anyone standing on the low hill in the foreground, and which takes only a few minutes for one to climb, but the beautiful sight well-repays the trouble.
The 32 page booklet is followed by another 16 page section (with its own page numbering) entitled Supplementary Album: Our Melbourne Inland Sea – Its Towns and Settlements. The complete booklet is available here (28MB).