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No 92 March 2012

Page history last edited by helen.halm@... 8 years, 9 months ago


                                                                 HISTORY ROOM

                                                         ALEXANDRINA LIBRARY SERVICES

March 2012                                                                                                       by Dawn Juers

                                                                       No 92



I now know of the group responsible for the crochet and knitted artwork around town – it was
Southern Fleurieu Health Services Art Activity Centre, Create and Connect. It’s a long name but
congratulations to you all.


I attended the free Family Day event – “Fringe Comes to Goolwa”  on Sunday and so did Hector.

You’ve probably heard of where’s Wally – Goolwa has where’s Hector? I’m sure he enjoyed the
proceedings from his vantage point at Jeralde Park. What a beautiful day it was. The acts were excellent 

which kept the crowd of about 300 entertained.


Since my last edition when I wrote the article “Sparrowcide”, a cutting from the ‘Southern Argus’
September 28th 1911, came in to the History Room.

“The final shoot in connection with the sparrow matches promoted by Mr T.J. Humphrey, was fired
at Langhorne Creek on Saturday last when 13 competitors engaged in the contest, the winners
turning up in Messrs. Harry and Lance Potts who tied with nine each out of a possible ten, the
latter also won Mr Humphrey’s medal with 28 out of 30 to his credit.”

So, our locals had sparrow shoots as well!



On Friday 30th March, a busload of visitors from the 13th Australasian Congress Genealogy &
Heraldry being held in Adelaide will visit Goolwa. Bill Cox from the History Room will join the
bus on a tour of historic sights of the town. The Congress is being hosted by the SA Genealogy &
Heraldry Society - now known as Genealogy SA (a more upmarket name I think). We hope they
enjoy Goolwa.


Carrick Hill’s private collection will be catalogued thanks to a $48,000 grant from the Copland
Foundation. It will be used to catalogue the estate’s massive collection held in the estate’s attic. Last
month a book on the estate Carrick Hill: A Portrait edited by Richard Heathcote was launched. The
home and contents in Springfield was bequeathed to the people of South Australia by Ursula and
Edward Hayward. The property is open to the public and I was one of a tour that visited last year. It
is an amazing property filled with paintings, sculptures and beautiful furniture in a virtual time warp
of the early 1900’s.


Currency Creek Mill


Built about 1855-60. An old barn not far away on Mr Shipway’s (then) property, built about the same time,
has a date of 1859 on the foundation. When first built the mill was intended to be a Dutch windmill, to pump
water from the old well, 90ft deep. (In an oral history (1956) Walter Frederick Newell states that a Mr Cotton
owned the property prior to Mr Shipway.)


A spiral stairway was built on the inside to get to the top of the mill, but after it was built the owners found it too
expensive to put the fans on the top, so it was used as a sawmill. At the time this (undated) article was written,

some of the adjacent properties still had deep scars on the high ground, where the bullock teams used to drag

the logs for the saw mill.


A sawpit was associated with the mill, which was operated by hand. Several of these were dotted
about the Currency Creek hills area where Blue gum trees were growing. [A sawpit is operated by
two men – one standing in the bottom of the pit, the other man at the top. The long saw is used to
cut the logs lengthwise, which must have been very, very hard work!]


The old Myrtle Grove church used timber from the mill for most of the timber in the building and
many of the old farm buildings were also constructed from timber sawn at the mill.


One of the riverboats was built in a bay nearby from timber sawn at the same mill (possibly The
Providence). For many years a Mr Merrick/Myrick owned the old Currency Creek Mill. After being
used as a saw mill it was converted to a flour mill.


Rumour has it that towards the period of it’s inactivity it was conducting a ‘sly still’, selling to the
riverboats. (Many of the leader pipes used with the still were uncovered many years later).

As part of it’s industry as a saw and flour mill, they probably used steam boilers as power for the
work involved. A man named Claughton was at one time associated with the history of the mill and
a small creek nearby bears the name of Claughton’s Creek.


It may seem strange that a well was in use so close to the large amount of water in Currency Creek,
but the river was almost all salt water (then) with seldom enough fresh water coming down the
river, to keep the water from the sea coming in through the Murray Mouth. Apparently, it was not
unusual for wells to be dug to obtain better water for household use as well as gardens.


 [From an undated paper by an unknown author found in the Val Lawrence Collection.]


Peter Humby in his book “Currency Creek South Australia” states that Daniel Myrick was an early
owner of the property and constructed the riverboat “The Providence” from sawn timber in a bay
not far from the mill.

The mill is still standing and is on private property.



*for photos see History Room News 92.pdf file


Back to History Room Newsletters


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