Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Campsite on the park reserve at Shellharbour Harbour. Boer War memorial in the background

Elliot's Camp Ground, Warilla

Sunbathers at Bassett Park caravan park in the 1950s
Courtesy Shellharbour Images

Monday, 21 March 2016

Timbs Town

Gabriel Timbs arrived in Australia as a young boy in 1839. He and his parents travelled on board the Formosa and on their arrival went to work for Henry Osborne at his Marshall Mount Estate.

Another well known family, the Thomas’ were also working for the Osborne’s during this time.

When Gabriel was a young man he married Eliza Fogarty and they had 8 children before Eliza’s death in 1862. Gabriel remarried Ellen O’Gorman and they had another 13 children, making Gabriel the father of 21 children.

In 1860 at the sale of the Terry’s Meadows (Albion Park) Estate land sale, Gabriel bought several lots in the township and set about building shops; a butcher, blacksmith, shoemaker, dressmaker and general store.

The Kiama Independent 9 December 1879 reported ‘the  spirited enterprise of our Mr. Timbs must not pass unnoticed and no man has spent more money or energy in advancing the welfare of this neighbourhood’. One reporter said the town should be called Timbs’ Town.

Gabriel also built the famous Albion Park Hotel, a two storied building with 12 large rooms for guests and verandahs. James Condon became the proprietor of Gabriel’s new ’Albion Park Hotel’, though Gabriel always pronounced it ‘Otel. Many years later the O’Gorman family ran the hotel.

Gabriel was generous to the local community and gave land to for a Catholic Church, Convent and Presbytery. He served as an Alderman on Shellharbour Municipal Council from 1876-1883.

Gabriel died at his ‘Rosetta Hill’ home at Mount Terry in 1901, when he was 77 years old. He bequeathed his entire estate to his wife Ellen.

Crossroads and Albion Park facing west c.1890.
Shellharbour Images Shellharbour City Library.

Gabriel Timbs Senior.
Shellharbour Images Shellharbour City Libraries.

Monday, 14 March 2016

The Settler's Arms Fire

Robert Martin was born c.1830 and arrived in Australia from Ireland in  1838. He worked as a digger on the Victorian goldfields before marrying Lily Ann Cochrane in 1853. In 1856 he was granted a publicans license for the Settler’s Arms at Shellharbour.

The ‘Settlers Arms Inn’ was a meeting place for many  significant events during the early development of the Village, most notably it was the meeting place for the petition of 210 persons signatories for the formation of Shellharbour as a    Municipality.  Mr. Robert Martin was one of the first Aldermen on Council 1859-1864. 
In 1864, Mr. Henry Parkes, MP for Kiama, on his campaign visit to Shellharbour, addressed the schoolchildren of the National School from the verandah of the Settlers Arms Inn.

Sadly Robert’s eldest daughter Isabella, drowned in a well while getting water for the family in July 1868. All efforts to resuscitate her failed after many townsfolk came to her aid.

The following year, Robert’s wife Lily Ann died, leaving six surviving children of the original eleven born. In 1872 Robert married Rebecca Clinton.

Misfortune struck the Martin family once again, when around 3 o’clock in the morning of  8 April 1872, The Settlers Arms Inn and dwelling house of Robert Martin were destroyed by fire. 

The townsfolk evacuated all the family and an enquiry into the origin of the fire was held at the Steam Packet Inn four days later.  The District Coroner, Mr. H. Connell could find no evidence how the fire started.

The site of the Settlers Arms Inn was left vacant until Mr. Henry Mood, builder and coachbuilder of Shellharbour built his New Royal Hotel.  Subsequent owners and licensees had occupied The New Royal until it was purchased by Mrs. Henrietta Bush.  It suffered the same fate as The Settlers Arms Inn, destroyed by fire in 1931. 

The Settlers Arms Hotel Addison Street, Shellharbour Village c.1860.
Shellharbour Images Shellharbour City Libraries.

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Calderwood Road, Albion Park. Postcard dated 22 December 1908.

North Macquarie  Road, Calderwood, Albion Park
The buggy was built by L. R. Mood and Sons, coachbuilders of Albion Park.
All information from Shellharbour Images
Tongarra Sawmill and staff accommodation

Tongarra Sawmill 1948

                                                Construction of Tongarra Sawmill 1946
Images available from Shellharbour Images