Nannine, Western Australia


Nannine, Western Australia
Nannine
Western Australia
Nannine-WA-2008.JPG
Nannine Townsite 2008
Nannine is located in Western Australia
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Nannine
Established: 1893
Postcode: 6642
Elevation: 452 m (1,483 ft)
Location:
LGA: Shire of Meekatharra
State District: North West
Federal Division: Durack

Nannine is a ghost town in the Mid West region of Western Australia. It is located on the northern bank of Lake Anneen, approximately 35 kilometres south-southwest of Meekatharra, and 735 kilometres north-northeast of Perth.

Nannine was formerly a gold mining town. John Connolly discovered gold at the site in 1890, prompting a gold rush to the area. A town was proclaimed in September 1891 and gazetted in 1893. It is claimed that it was the first town in the region [1]

By 1894 [2] the town was large enough to be given its own electoral district, and in 1896 construction began on a Northern Railway between Nannine and Cue, Western Australia, which was completed in 1903..[3] The continuation of the line to Meekatharra was begun in 1909.

Contents

History

Nannine is an Aboriginal name, "Nannine Wells" being first recorded by a surveyor in 1889. The meaning of the name is not known. The earliest days of gold discovery at this site are shrouded in controversy, but according to one source it is likely that the first suspicions of gold in the area were apparently held by INGPEN and WATTS, station hands on the Annean pastoral station. In about May 1890 they showed the site to J. F. CONNOLLY, a New South Wales mining engineer, who found gold but he does not appear to have been too impressed. In October 1890 McPHERSON and PETERKIN were directed to the same site and found significant quantities of gold. By August 1891 they and others had recovered about 1,700 ounces of gold. The Murchison Goldield, which included Nannine was proclaimed in September 1891. By December about seven hundred men were at the field.[4]

The original settlement was down in a gulley area between the later town and the mines to the east and north of the town. In 1892 John FORREST, the Commissioner for Crown Lands decided to have lots surveyed and a townsite declared, although FORREST referred to the place as "Annean", the name of the nearby pastoral station. When the local miners heard the auction of lots was to be in Perth, eighty five of them petitioned FORREST to have the auction in Geraldton. The lots were surveyed in August 1892, and the townsite named Nannine, as "it is situated 10 miles from Annean Station and 3 miles from Nannine Wells", and was also the name of the proposed electoral district and adjacent gold mining lease. The townsite was gazetted in April 1893. Following the survey and the release of the town blocks for purchase, many if not all of the existing premises including the businesses moved to the official townsite. Exactly how rapidly this migration occurred is not known, but it was apparently complete by 1896/7. This may have resulted in some businesses closing down, not wishing to make the move to rated land. By 1919 the town was in deep decline.[5]

Utilities

In November 1906 the town water supply was opened.[6]

Administration

Nannine was declared a municipality in September 1896.[5] The last meeting of the Nannine Road Board was held in January 1930.[7]

TWINE, A. C. - He was the first Town Clerk.[5]

MASTERDON, J. L. - He appears to have been the first Mayor.[5]

Mining Warden

By 1893 the Wardens Court was still a tent with a notice board at the front,[8] but fortunately construction began on a stone building for the Warden's Court and Registrars office in March 1896.[9]

WALTERS, W. A. G. - The first mining Warden at Nannine. He arrived in September 1891.[10]

Police and courts

A Police Station was built in 1896. The station was closed in January 1922 and the building removed to Yalgoo sometime that year.

BINNINGS, [Constable] - He was in the area by September 1891[11] although he cannot be specifically pinpointed to Nannine until April 1892.[12]

Cemetery

By 1896/7 there were about six graves in front of Judges Hotel in Simpson Street, but at the time they were due to be moved.[5]

Education

The Reverend Gilbert HARDING opened a school alongside his residence in March 1906.[13]

Transport services

In January 1892 SPALDING began a coach service from Mingenew to Annean and MARSH ran one from Geraldton to Nannine from July the same year.[10] In 1897 the postal directory records twice weekly Gascard coaches from Yalgoo.[14] The West Australian Tuesday 6 January 1903 records the opening of the 'railway line from Cue to Nannine'.[15]

Postal & Communication Services

A telegraph line to Geraldton commenced service in November 1894.[16] Work on the stone post and telegraph building began in March 1896[9] at the corner of Marmion & McPherson Streets in 1896/7.[5]

TWINE, A. C. - He is listed as the Postmaster in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

Hotels and accommodation

Original Townsite
The earliest recorded hotel was opened by Dan DOWNIE in January 1892, but it may not have been the first hotel built. It is probably the Pioneer hotel recorded as one of five existing hotels in March that year. The others were the Royal, the Excelsior, the Murchison and the Nannine. Mrs RAMSAY, hostess of the Murchison was the first woman at the field.[10]

Gazetted Townsite
HOTEL - Downey & Murphy were listed together as hotel and storekeepers in the 1894 postal directory.[17]

The Pioneer

Downie & Murphy are listed as hotel and Storekeepers in the 1894 postal directory.[18] This is assumed to be the Pioneer Hotel as DOWNIE had shifted his earlier hotel from the old townsite and was running the business as the Pioneer hotel on McPherson Street in the gazetted town in 1896/7. He had presumably retained the business name from the previous site.[5] David DOWNIE's entry in the 1897 postal directory links him with the Pioneer Hotel and store. It is not known whether these were distinct premises.[14] It was one of four hotels trading in 1898.[19]

The Royal

John DENNIS was listed there in the 1894 postal directory,[20] but by 1897 the postal directory lists Robert J. RIDLEY.[14] The hotel was still trading in December 1909.[21]

The Victoria

In 1895 Mr KELLY's refitted brick Victoria Hotel, was refused a licence on the grounds of there being insufficient population, although it had been licensed in earlier years.[22]

The Victory

There had been a Victory Hotel prior to it being leased as a boarding house in 1893.[22] The 1895 post office directory listed V. BARDEN.[23] T MacDONALD, the then lessee was going to apply to have it re-licensed in 1896.[24] E. B. SOUGHTON is listed at the hotel in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

Judge's Hotel

In 1896/7 this hotel on Simpson Street was the largest building in town.[5]

The Nannine

Listed 'For Sale By Tender' late in 1899,[25] the hotel was described as being splendidly furnished throughout, of iron construction and containing a large bar, three parlours, a drawing room, dining room and 12 bedrooms, plus appliances. It boasted a large billiard room fitted out with a renowned 'Alcock' table, and was advertised to include stables, outhouses and a butcher's shop, and was purported to have an annual turnover of three thousand Australian pounds. In January 1907 there was an explosion of a gasometer at the hotel, which blew the roof off one of the outhouses. Mrs Eleanor WILLOWS, the live in manager at the time, was reported to have been unscathed.[26] 'Mum Willows', as she was known, managed the hotel on her own from the time it came into the hands of Mr William SNELL in 1904,[27] until she moved to Meekatharra in 1920.[28]

The North Murchison

It was one of four hotels trading in 1898,[29] and was the town's last hotel when it closed down in the 1940s.[30]

Otherbusinesses

Original townsite
By August 1891 CRUIKSHANKS had opened a small shop on the field. This was presumably one of the CRUIKSHANK's of Annean station.[31] By March 1892 ALDERMAN, URCH, BRAND, FOGG and McINNES had all started grocery story stores and DURACK was operating as a butcher. DUFF who joined the line up of general stores in by July also had a branch in Cue.[32] James BROWN also had a store there.[5]

Gazetted townsite

BAKER - James BOND is listed as a baker in the 1895 postal directory,[23] and by 1896/7 J & J BOND's galvanised iron shop and bakehouse were described as being on Marmion Street.[5] James and John BOND were also advertising as confectioners by the time of their 1897 postal directory listing.[14]

BLACKSMITH 1 - The 1895 postal directory lists C. A. BOSTON,[23] and he is still listed in the 1897 directory.[14]

BLACKSMITH 2 - By 1896/7 Marmion Street included Mr MAIN's blacksmith shop.[5]

BLACKSMITH - The 1897 postal directory lists P. M. DUNNE.[14]

BLACKSMITH - The 1897 postal directory lists C. JAMES.[14]

BUILDER & CONTRACTOR - John DAWSON and Robert BOYNTON of Dawson & Boynton are listed in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

BUTCHER 1 - By 1896/7 J Meehan & Co's butchers shop was on Marmion Street,[5] and John & James MEEHAN are listed in the 1897 postal directory.[33]

BUTCHER 2 - The 1897 postal directory lists A. J. EDWARDS as butcher & store.[33]

BUTCHER 3 - The 1897 postal directory lists H. P. Sprigg & Co as butchers and produce merchants.[33]

COOL DRINK FACTORY - By 1896/7 J. C. ANDREWS & Sons mineral water factory was on Marmion Street.[5]

HAIRDRESSER 1 - The 1897 postal directory lists T. Anthony & Co.[14]

HAIRDRESSER 2 - The 1897 postal directory lists A. STURM.[14]

MARKET GARDEN - By 1896/7 J. &J. BOND had a market garden about 8 kilometres east of town.[5]

MINING AGENT 1 - J. C. SHERRINGTON is listed in the 1894 postal directory.[18]

MINING AGENT[S] 2 - By 1896/7 MacPherson Street had offices for TIMPERLEY-MASTERTON & TWINE.[5]

MERCHANT 1 - The 1894 postal directory listed John URCH.[17]

NEWSAGENTS & PHOTOGRAPHERS - A. De Courcey & Co are listed in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

STONEMASON - The 1897 postal directory lists both James McNAIR and S. MANGAN.[14]

STOREKEEPER 1 - James BROWN was the first person to move his store onto the newly gazetted townsite and by 1896/7 it is recorded on Marmion Street.[5] He was listed in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

STOREKEEPER 2 - The 1894 postal directory listed J. F. Duff & Co.[17]

STOREKEEPER 3 - By 1896/7 MacPherson Street had William SMALL's general store on the corner with Marmion Street.[5]

STOREKEEPER 4 - Downie & Murphy are listed as hotel and Storekeepers in the 1894 postal directory.[18] This would appear to be related to David DOWNIE's entry in the 1897 postal directory which links him with the Pioneer Hotel and store. It is not known whether these were distinct premises.[18]

STOREKEEPER 5 - Eves & Co stayed in business until about 1940.[30]

STOREKEEPER 6 - The 1897 postal directory included O. P. TIMPERLEY and J. T. F. MASTERTON of Timperley & Masterton as storekeepers, and mining and commission agents.[14]

STOREKEEPER 7 - Urch & Ridley are included in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

UNKNOWN - In 1911 Margolin & Co announced that they were closing there business in Nannine.[34]

VETERINARY? SURGEON - Robert CONWAY was listed in the 1897 postal directory.[14]

Halls and churches

A Wood and iron Miners Institute was erected in 1896/7. The only church building to that date in the town Roman Catholic.[5] The Miners Institute hall was handed over to the Municipal Council to manage in 1910.[35]

The Masonic Hall

Freemasonry was a significant part of the social fabric of many rural and remote towns across Australia during the first half of the 20th century. The Masonic Hall was originally built in Nannine around 1900, and then transported to Meekatharra when Nannine began to fade some 20 years later. In listing the building on its Register, the Heritage Council of WA depicts it as being of "Federation Gothic" architectural style. It lists the building's "Historic Themes" as being "social and civic activities, sport, recreation and entertainment". The listing goes on to describe the Hall as being "a large timber framed corrugated iron clad rectangular building with a red iron roof. Timber framed windows are set high under the eaves, and there is a small feature gable over the east window. The roof is punctuated by three metal vents. There is a corrugated iron addition to the rear of the building, and two separate toilets."[36]

Today, the Hall stands on the corner of Savage and Darlot Streets, Meekatharra, West Australia as a distictive if somewhat forlorn reminder of times now long past.[36]

References

  1. ^ Heydon, P. R. (1990) Nannine by the lake Meekatharra, W.A : Ross Atkins Mining ; Carlisle, W.A : Hesperian Press. ISBN 0859051374 (pbk.) Cover sub-title: A story of the first town on the Murchison Goldfields.
  2. ^ Bateson, Fred W. (1946) Murchison 1894. Reminiscences of his journey to the Star of the East Gold Mine, and his experiences working there. (Star of the East Gold Mine (Nannine, W.A.)) Early days Vol 3, Dec 1946, p. 51-55
  3. ^ The West Australian (Perth, WA : 1879-1954), Tuesday 6 January 1903, page 5
  4. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. pp 10-11.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r George HOPE's - Murchison Goldfields - supplement to the Geraldton Express. 1897.
  6. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 85.
  7. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 99.
  8. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 195.
  9. ^ a b HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 62.
  10. ^ a b c HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 11.
  11. ^ PASHLEY, A.R. [Don] - Policing Our State A History of Police Stations and Police Officers in Western Australia 1829 - 1945. Educant. W.A. 2000. pp 368-369.
  12. ^ Public Records Office [W.A.] Accessions 430. Item 824/1892.
  13. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 86.
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r Postal directory 1897. p 191.
  15. ^ The West Australian Newspaper, Tues 6 January 1903 - page 5
  16. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 12.
  17. ^ a b c The Western Australian Directory [PIERSSENE] 1894. p 131.
  18. ^ a b c d Postal directory 1894. p 131.
  19. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 73.
  20. ^ The Western Australian Directory [PIERSSENE] 1894. Page 131.
  21. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 90.
  22. ^ a b The Murchison Times and Day Dawn Gazette. 27 October 1895.
  23. ^ a b c The Western Australian Directory [WISES] 1895. p 105.
  24. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 60.
  25. ^ The West Australian (Perth, Western Australia) Tuesday 1 August 1899 p 8 Advertising
  26. ^ The West Australian (Perth, WA : 1879-1954), Thursday 24 January 1907, page 5
  27. ^ 'Child of the Outback' by Lucy Christina Glanfield, self published, printed by Wescolour Press, High St., East Fremantle, West Australia - p.67
  28. ^ 'Child of the Outback' by Lucy Christina Glanfield, self published, printed by Wescolour Press, High St., East Fremantle, West Australia - p.69
  29. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 73.
  30. ^ a b HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 100.
  31. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 10.
  32. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 11.
  33. ^ a b c Postal directory 1897. p 191
  34. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 93.
  35. ^ HEYDON, P R - Nannine by the Lake A Story of the First Town on the Murcheson Goldfields. Hesperian Press. Victoria Park, WA. 1990. p 92.
  36. ^ a b Heritage Panel 5 - Shire of Meekatharra: Cnr of Savage and Darlot Streets, Meekatharra, West Australia

Coordinates: 26°53′06″S 118°20′28″E / 26.885°S 118.341°E / -26.885; 118.341


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