WOOL PROVIDED JOBS FOR MANY by Alan McRae, President Bathurst District Historical Society.

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No 4 – MACQUARIE RIVER WAS ONCE MUCH WIDER

Taken around 1910 this early tinted postcard shows the Macquarie River much wider than it is today. The steel Denison Bridge, the second bridge to be constructed after the first timber bridge was washed a way, can be seen in the background

The river was called 'Wambool' by local aborigines and was a great food source for them. When Surveyor Evans discovered it he named it the Macquarie River after the man who had despatched him westwards after the crossing of the Blue Mountains by Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson.

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No 3 - EARLY POST OFFICE IS  NOW BATHURST DISTRICT HISTORICAL SOCIETY MUSEUM   

The east wing of the Bathurst Court House seen here was once one of the Post Offices for Bathurst. The east wing was built in 1877 though this photo was taken in 1928. Upstairs was the Postmaster's residence where he lived with his wife and family. Initially when the wing was constructed the second storey did not have the verandah, this was added later.

It was Governor Darling who responded to increasing complaints in the mid 1820s when he considered the proposal to establish an Inland Post with seven 'country post offices each with a Deputy Post Master in charge'. Thus the Bathurst Post Office opened in March, 1828, with Mr. A. Macleod temporarily employed until the Clerk to the Bench of Magistrates, Mr. John Liscombe, took over.   

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No 2 - BATHURST  DISTRICT  HOSPITAL

Bathurst's second hospital is seen here in this hand-tinted postcard taken by Mr. H.C. Beavis, a Bathurst photographer. They were taken for J.R. & A. Jones' stationery store of William Street. The postcard was posted from Bathurst at 9am on 7th August, 1905, to Miss H. Hardcastle of Oatley Bay in Sydney. The writer had just received a telegram from a Mrs Martin informing her of her brother's death. 

The first hospital at Bathurst, albeit a 'Government convict' hospital, was constructed in the 1820s.  Bathurst was fortunate to have a 'hospital' from those early times simply because Bathurst was a convict settlement. Later, changes in Government policy saw the old hospital become the Bathurst District Hospital in August 1842.

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No 5 - BANK OF NEW SOUTH WALES SOON BUILT NEW PREMISES

The Bank of New South Wales had decided to open a branch on the Turon goldfield in 1853 but the idea was not followed up. It was 1856 before the bank finally opened in Bathurst in rented premises in George Street after signing an agreement with their landlord for £250 per annum for three years. By early September these first premises were "being fitted out ready for business". The bank board was fully aware of all the gold that was being found locally along the Turon and other gold fields so they were bound to take the opportunity to purchase as much gold as possible.

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No 6 - BAND PAVILION PART OF ORIGINAL MACHATTIE PARK PLAN

One of the main features of Machattie Park is the "Band Pavilion", also referred to as the "Band Rotunda" or "Band Stand". This photo was taken by Mr. C.J. Beavis, photographer of George Street, in 1903.

Definitely one Bathurstian who was very keen, if not one of the keenest, on having the land that once housed a very large gaol turned into an established laid out park was Doctor Thomas Machattie. Thus when the reserve was named 'Machattie Park' after his father, Doctor Richard Machattie, it must have been a great family honour at the time in 1889.

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No 1  - RUSSELL STREET

This section of Russell Street is part of the 'Town Square' in Bathurst. The photo was taken looking towards William Street in 1928 and shows several motor vehicles parallel parked along the street, unlike today. To the left in King's Parade can be seen the Boer War Memorial along with the series of seats that had recently been installed by Bathurst City Council. The streetlights were lit by gas produced by Council's gasworks which was once located further down Russell Street and just under the railway underpass.

Parking was certainly not at a premium in Russell Street at this time when bicycles, horses, horse and carts were still a common sight along with the 'motor vehicle'.

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It is surprising the number of times where one or more of Bathurst's doctors in the 1800s and early 1900s were responsible for suggesting ideas for local projects such as parks and memorial drives.

It was during the last decade of the reign of Queen Victoria that this magnificent park in Bathurst was created for people at the time and future generations like us today.  The eight acre park itself was named after Dr Richard Machattie and the feature in today's photo, the 'duck pond' after Dr William Walter Spencer.  The duck pond, or more correctly 'Lake Spencer', has from the time it was completed, nearly 120 years ago, been a popular location, especially with children. 

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