Extracts from early Echunga and Crafers District Council Meetings

The following early Extracts from the Echunga District Council and the Crafers District Council meetings were compiled by Reg Butler (Hahndorf Historian) and taken directly from his unpublished computer working files

MRG 6 1/1  Echunga District Council Minutes

3/12/1853 - The Chairman stated that the boundary of the District near Crafers was already engaging the attention of the Survey Dept, and that the land near Spencer’s old hut was being surveyed, and if any new line of road is to be investigated, there is no time to lose. Decision to be adjourned until the next meeting.

4/2/1854 - The Chairman to draw the attention of the Central Road Board to the Bridge at the Cattle Company Creek near Warlands, and the Hill adjacent thereto, also to the required repairs near the new bridge, to the flat near the Devil’s Elbow, and to the creek running through the same and to other places on the road to Crafers.

18/2/1854 - The Central Road Board had received the Chairman very cordially, agreed to his proposals, and had sent a surveyor to examine and report upon the road at their next meeting.

The Chairman is requested to continue his attention to this business.

Depasturing licence granted to Christian Jaensch, German butcher …

4/3/1854 - The Chairman reported that he had attended the meeting of Central Road Board held on 23 Feb and that a survey of the main road through the district was now being made.

21/10/1854 - The Chairman was requested to draw the attention of the Central Road Board to the Main Road near the Cattle Company Bridge, and to name an instance of another bullock having been killed there last evening.

19/51855 - The Chairman called the attention of the Council to the fact that in consequence of the extreme delay in the formation of the new main line of road between Gum Flat near Warland’s and Nixon’s Quarries, the district road leading from Echunga to Hahndorf had virtually become a main line - and was seriously damaged by the increased traffic thereon.

1/9/1855 - The Chairman reported that he had received information from the Ranger that a stone quarry had been opened at Cox Creek by parties not resident in the District and that in consequence of this information he had written to the Crown Land Commission requesting information in such cases. He had had a reply to the effect that the Council had no power to interfere in the matter, but that if any case of the kind were reported to him, he would take such steps as the circumstances required …

13/9/1855 - The Chairman also reported that the cutting of Schultz’s Hill, Hahndorf road, was in progress and that the other authorised works were finished.

19/11/1855 - The Chairman reported that … the portion of the main road lately abandoned near Hahndorf never formed any part of the main line of road as gazetted by the Road Board, and of course was under the control of the Council.

8/9/1856 - Hawkins wanted to transfer his Crafers hotel licence to John Dean of Nairne.6

6/10/1856 - Hardeman Flat at Echunga mentioned.

14/12/1857 - David Johns stood surety for August Beyer to take over the Bridgewater Hotel.

2/8/1858 - John Dunn & Son applied by letter for permission to straighten the channel, remove some loose stones from the bed of Cox Creek, which runs through the Government Reserve adjoining Section 1141. The Clerk stated that Mr Dunn had met him on the ground and pointed out the alterations he wished to make. The work proposed by Mr Dunn would neighter alter the course of the water, nor injure anyone, although it would be of advantage to himself. Application granted.

21/2/1859 - A letter was received from the Crafers DC asking for aid in rebuilding a log bridge at Cox Creek, destroyed by the late bushfires. The Council agreed to join in the expense of rebuilding the bridge, as the centre of the road was the District boundary, and requested the Clerk to communicate with the Chairman of the Crafers DC and make the necessary arrangements with him.

9/3/1859 - The Clerk reported that he had seen the Chairman of the Crafers DC respecting the Bridge at Cox Creek destroyed by the late bushfire. As the road was absolutely impassable without the bridge, the Crafers DC had invited tenders for a newe bridge before he had any opportunity of communicating with them on the subject. The Bridge is finished and he had inspected the work since its completion. he thoughtg tghe work well and cheaply done and had promised that half of the cost viz £2/7/6 should be paid by the Echunga DC. Approved.

18/4/1859 - A letter was read from the Crafers DC asking whether the Echunga DC would be willing to assist in replacing the boundary road at Cox Creek. Clerk to reply that at the present time, the Council were not in possession of funds for the purpose.


Crafers DC minutes MRG 23 1/1

Mr Davies was the Chairman when the Cox Creek bridge was rebuilt.

25/7/1859 - David Johns chosen as Cox Creek Special Constable. He would not take an oath of office, and the Council had to enquire whether they could take an affirmation. David Johns Council Chairman in the 1860s.

Davies & Bruce the place where the Crafers DC assessment book available for perusal at Cox Creek. Clerk also came there to collect rates.

4/6/1860 - Some fences incorrectly placed. Notices to be placed on the old Mt Barker Road, cautioning people against damaging watertables and obstructing the road.

18/6/1860 - Mr RD Hanson asked about closure of roads at Cox Creek; he wanted to buy closed roads, where applicable.

31/8/1861 - John Ashhurst made a special constable.

7/7/1862 - Charles Barton became an auditor. Davies from the store chosen as well. Barton Council Chairman in 1865.

6/9/1862 - Zebulon Batt given permission to use the Government Reserve at the Deanery to get in and out of his property.

18/7/1863 - Noah Nichols chosen special constable.

4/2/1865 - That Mr Barton be authorised th take the necessary steps to have the creek at the Old Deanery surveyed for the erectioin of a bridge - and that Mr Dixon be communicated withy - as to undertaking that duty. Mr Burton statted that private subscriptions to the extent of £7 were promised towards the cost. Tenders to be called.

4/2/1865 - Only Miford had contracted for a bridge - £97/10/-. Council decided to investigate making a ford. Ask Echunga DC for £20 to assist in the work.

14/2/1865 - Fresh tenders to be called for the old Deanery Bridge. Milford’s tender too high.

4/3/1865 - Dixon’s application to build bridge in the Deanery for £80 to be accepted.

Echunga DC approved £10 towards the bridge. The Chairman promised ‘that he would urge them to a further contribution’.

25/3/1865 - Mr Dixon wanted to lay pylons on planks on the ground. Council insisted on piles being sunk into the ground. Mr Dixon also wanted the bridge to be 20’ further downstream from the existing site.

6/5/1865 - Charles Barton appointed Council Clerk at an annual salary of £20. A month later, he resigned and J Milford appointed instead.

29/7/1869 - Samuel Sisson appointed special constable.

8/8/1866 - William Clark made Cox Creek special constable.

3/4/1867 - to get silt cleaned out from under the old Deanery Bridge. Joseph Welfare got the contract.

So and so many days’ work on the Ridge road approved from time to time.

9/3/1868 - 1st reference to Bridgewater in the Crafers DC minutes. £1 to Martin Crane for a road repair.

Notes for stumps in the road at Cox Creek to be grubbed. John Welfare did the grubbing.

29/6/1868 - Mr Justice Hanson asked for exchange of roads. Agreed to Mr Hanson’s terms.

14/12/1869 - Thistles growing thick on the old Deanery reserve.

Saw Mill Road in Cox Creek valley.

8/7/1872 - John Ashhurst and John Welfare elected auditors. Quite often one or both of the auditors came from Cox Creek. Samuel Davie the school teacher very popular from the 1870s on.

12/9/1872 - Clerk to speak to Mr Gwatkins and ask him to call round by the junction of Ridge Rd and Mt Barker Road, and caution all persons leaving wood and loaded drays on the road, once or twice a week.

10/10/1872 - Letter from Dunn & Co and Mr Ashhurst asking for repairs to road through Section 1134.

Ridge Road for Old Mt Barker Road in 1860s & 1870s. Lion Mill Road common during that time as well.

24/4/1873 - The entrance to the road on the hill with Lions Mill Road was very dangerous and required a few pannells of fence. Mr Barton to get same done.

Apparently no one on Batt’s property immediately after he left for Pt Gawler and many thistles grew there in the meantime.

5/6/1873 - Martin Kain took on the job of putting up the fence to make the road junction safer. 17/6.

31/7/1873 - Old Deanery bridge closed to traffic and a ford made beside instead. J Hunter made the ford for £6.

8/1/1874 - John Burnett’s tender for £16 accepted to repair the Old Deanery Bridge by 6/2/1874. Some contract times were extended because of wet weather making it difficult to complete in the specified time.

13/5/1875 - Complaint in the Advertiser re the cleanliness of Samuel Davie’s school at Stirling.

28/8/1879 - G & J Downer retained to fight Council’s case re trees on Ridge Road. £1/16/-.

23/6/1881 - Copies of the assessment to be left at Dunn’s mill for ratepayers to examine.

17/11/1881 - Cr John Brodie reported that Lea & Co storekeepers have erected a wooden building on the reserve at Bridgewater for the purpose of a store. Resolved that the Clerk write and inform them that they will have to pay a weekly rental of 4/- to commence from the time of their occupying the land. Rent to be paid weekly.

1/12/1881 - Letter received from Lea & Co complaining that the rent charged for reserve at Bridgewater is to (sic) high. Clerk to reply that the Council adhere to their former decision.

27/7/1882 - Meeting of Echunga and Mitcham ratepayers who will come into Crafers DC. Meeting to be held on Thursday evening, 10 August 1882 at 7.30pm.

25 for and 14 against making the Crafers district larger.

24/8/1872 - The Clerk to write to the contractor of the Nairne Railway requesting that the holes in the Bridgewater road near Lea & Co’s store be filled up at once.

27/9/1883 - That the Clerk give AG Lea & Co notice to pay up arrears of rent of store on the reserve, Bridgewater, or legal proceedings will be taken.

1/11/1883 - Letter received from Mr ES Wigg re Lea & Co Store at Bridgewater and asking that it should be removed at once, so that the road can be completed it being dangerous. Clerk to reply that notgice will be given him to remove it.

Telegram received from Mr Mais Engineer-in-Chief, asking the Council to get Lea and Co’s store removed at once. Clerk to reply that one week’s notice will be given to remove it.

Resolved that the Clerk give Lea & Co one week notice to remove stone off reserve at Bridgewater, or the stone will be removed at their expense by the Council.

Resolved that the former minute be recinded and that the Clerk take steps to putg the Bailiff in possession of the store belonging to Lea & Co on the Reserve at Bridgewater, for rent in arrears.

Resolved that the Clerk give Messrs Baillie, Davies & Wishart seven days’ notice to pay account due for royalty of stone taken out of the Reserve Quarry, Aldgate, or legal proceedings to be taken. Mr von Doussa of Mt Barker to proceed against the firm.

HE Downer lived in the Crafers DC.

Is Hunby really Whibley? Thomas Whibley.

8/4/1924 - Ratepayer complaints that Bridgewater Park Trust removing trees unnecessarily when making footpaths through the bushland. Council to issue warning that trees not to be removed indiscriminately.

7/10/1925 - Approval for a two-roomed cottage at Bridgewater - wood and iron and asbestos, lined with fibrous plaster and asbestos. Rooms 12 x 10 each.

15/7/1935 - Letter from AR Downer complaining that the road from the Deanery Bridge to his place was in dreadful repair. Heavy carting to his house was now finished. Many people making bad remarks about the road.

Mrs EA Beckett left in poor circumstances after her husband died. She received a free bed in the Stirling hospital for her sick son.

In the depression, people had been in the habit of coming from outside of the district to sell food at roadside stalls at Bridgewater. Council asked that this practice stop.

29/4/1936 - A bushfire had been in the Mt George area and Bridgewater Park.