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3 corrections, most recently by pmitchell - Show corrections

The romance of Australian place names  

Here are more Australian place names,

and notes about each. Watch this series for places      

you know or are interested in -      

or perhaps your own home town.


Grafton After Duke of Grafton (family name Fitzroy). It was the birthplace of the famous Professor

Graham Elliot Smith, who became Professor of Anatomy at the Cairo School of Medicine

and at Man         chester University. During the 1914-

18 war he was engaged in psycho logical work among shell-shocked   soldiers Also the birthplace of the distingished Australian soldier

Iven Mackay and Harry Searle,

the world's champion sculler, 1888-



Aboriginal: Stated by some to have meant "plenty of eels"; by   others "head of the river. First  

known as Rose Hill, after George Rose, Secretary of the British Treasury. A cabbage grown at  

Rose Hill and cut for the King's Birthday is said to have weighed


Wagga Wagga

Aboriginal: "Many crows." Thomas Mitchell, who served un- der Wellington, named the streets alter Peninsula War veterans. Here lived as a butcher last century Thomas Castro (Arthur Orton), who claimed to be heir to the Tich- borne estate. The case in London occupied 102 days (costing the estate £92,000). The court found against Orton and he was tried for perjury. This trial took from April 22, 1873, to February 28,

1874, when he was sentenced to 14 years. He weighed 24 stone. Wagga was the birthplace of Field-Marshal Sir Thomas Blamey, famous in World War II as Commander-in

Chief of the Australian Military


(VICTORIA) Campaspe

Thomas Mitchell, who was a classical scholar as well as an ex- plorer, named it after a woman mend of Alexander the Great. Morwell

From an early hotel. Dimboola

Should really have been Dim bela the Ceylonese name bestowed by Surveyor J. G. W. Wilmott. who had been in the Indian

regiment. It means "land of figs"


Aboriginal: "Ghost waterhole." Prahran

From native Purraran, which means "nearly surrounded by water." Porepunkah

This town was christened in a

storm and its name is a combina

tion of Hindu words meaning "wind" and "blower". (QUEENSLAND)

Gympie. The original settlement was

known as Nashville (because James Nash found gold there in the late 'sixties) and was recorded officially as the Upper Mary River Field. The largest nugget from the Gympie diggings was the Curis, 96oz, valued at £3132. It was found in an abandoned shaft. The

name Gympie is derived from Gympi-Gympi, the aborigines' word

for the stinging tree. Maryborough

After the Mary River on which it stands. Lady Mary was fourth daughter of the fourth Duke of

Richmond and wife of Sir Charles Fitzroy, Governor of N.S.W. She was thrown from a carriage and killed when going to a dance at



Formerly German Pass. Named

Angas Town after George Fife Angas, who sent the first shipment

of settlers to South Australia. Ceduna

The aboriginal name for a waterhole in the locality. Echunga

Aboriginal: "Close."


Named after the Earl of Kim- berley.


The scene in 1834 of a distress

ing battle with aborigines. The battle practically dispersed the Bubbulmun race, which had lived in the south for countless ages, making them wanderers.

(TASMANIA) Port Davey

Named after the Governor, "Mad" Tom Davey, who had a

turbulent career in Tasmania from

1813-17. He upset staid officials when arriving by carrying his coat over his arm. Tbe port was named by James Kelly, who, in 1817, sailed with four men from Hobart

in a whale boat and went right

round Tasmania. The native name for Port Davey, Poyndue. Marrawah

Native word for "gum trees."


Victoria River

Named in 1839 by Captain Stokes, R.N., who wrote: "As we ran in between the frowning heights . . . 'This is indeed a noble river' burst from several lips at the same moment. 'And worthy,' con- tinued I, 'of being honored with the name of Her Most Gracious Majesty, the Queen!' "