About this blog

This blog is about the history of the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp and neighbouring areas, such as Pakenham, Cranbourne and Garfield, and any other historical subjects I feel like writing about. It's my own original research and writing and if you live in the area you may have read some of the stories before in the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp Historical Society newsletter or the Koo-Wee-Rup township newsletter, The Blackfish, or the Garfield township newsletter, The Spectator.
Heather Arnold.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

A tramway through the Swamp June 1893

An early account of life on the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp from  page three of the Warragul Guardian and Buln Buln and Narracan Shire Advocate from  June 23, 1893. I have transcribed the article.

Those of the unemployed who were sent to work at Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp by the Public Works department some time ago, and who have since obtained 20-acre blocks fronting the Main Drain from the  Lands Department, with the view of cultivating  them and making homes for themselves and their families there, are showing a praiseworthy desire to assist themselves. Each alternate week they devote towards clearing the ti-tree off their blocks, and now they have entered into an arrangement with the Public Works department to construct a tram way from Koo-Wee-Rup Station, on the Great Southern Railway, along the Main Drain to Bunyip Station, on the Gippsland line, a distance of 15 miles. They have formed themselves into a co-operative company, and each man on the settlement is to give one day's work free towards constructing the tramway.

They have also agreed to give a shilling a month for six months towards the purchase of the rails, which are to be supplied by the Government, and each man undertakes to go into the bush and cut 50 sleepers without making any charge. The gauge of the tramway will be 2ft. 8in., and it will be worked by horses. The spongy nature of the country precludes the formation of good roads, and hence the necessity for the tramway. As soon as it is finished they will work it and charge freights according to distance. The Government intend giving the men every encouragement, and an expert in horticulture from the Agricultural Department will shortly visit the settlement and give the men instructions how to plant fruit trees, &c., on their holdings.

Newspaper article from trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper

No comments:

Post a Comment