Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide : 2014 Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide
rich history | adelaidehills.org.au 11 Traditions have been nurtured, not lost, by settler communities, whose craft took pride of place unfettered, uncluttered and free. Long before European settlement, the Mount Lofty Ranges were inhabited by the Peramangk people – that rich history still lives on today. The Peramangk Aboriginal people managed and preserved the Hills, using fire to clear old grasses and promote fresh plant growth. Freshwater rock holes were covered with slabs of stone or brushwood to keep the water clean and to prevent animals from drinking out of them, and tracks were maintained through the hilly terrain, linking places and people throughout the Adelaide Hills. Their country extends as far north as the Barossa Valley and east to the banks of the Murray River. Their neighbours are the Ngarrindjeri people of the Coorong and Lakes regions and the Kaurna people of the Adelaide Plains to the west, with whom the Peramangk would regularly meet for trade and ceremony. Ceremony played an important role in their lives, with corroborees and meetings held to settle disagreements, for initiation, marriage, trade or to share stories and experiences. At Cleland Wildlife Park the Yurridla Trail offers a chance to hear Aboriginal guides bring to life their Dreaming stories and explain the inseparable relationship between Aboriginal culture and Australian wildlife. European settlement It wasn’t long after South Australia was established in 1836 that the early settlers discovered the Adelaide Hills. One of the first towns was Norton Summit, settled in 1837 by Englishman Robert Norton. Soon after, many more towns sprung up, including Hahndorf, Crafers, Gumeracha, Meadows, Mount Barker and Oakbank, many starting with the symbolic construction of a pub. Many of the Adelaide Hills’ early immigrants, including the Silesian and Prussian settlers who established Hahndorf, Lobethal and Birdwood, were fleeing religious persecution and the Hills provided them with a new beginning. Those seeking refuge of a different kind were the colony’s cattle thieves, sly grog merchants and bushrangers, who often hid out in the Hills, along with the tiersmen who worked the stringybark forests that covered the region. The mid to late 1800s saw the gold rush arrive and with it thousands of new settlers. The most successful gold mining site was Jupiter Creek at Echunga, which attracted 1200 miners at its peak. Several reminders of this era are still intact today, including a Cornish-style round stone chimney, an engine house dating back to the 1860s and hundreds of mine shafts. With only a third of prospectors making any money, the rush was short-lived. However, miners did return to the area in the 1930s when the Great Depression saw hundreds try their luck again. By the late 19th century, the towns of Stirling, Mylor, Uraidla and Woodside had sprung up, fuelled by the brewing, milling and farming industries. Around this time many of Adelaide’s wealthy residents discovered that the Adelaide Hills provided the perfect cool retreat from the city’s hot summers and set about building grand summer houses here – many of which are still lived in today. Historic hot spots Bridgewater Mill Flour mills were built throughout the Adelaide Hills during the 19th century and historic examples can still be found at Birdwood, Mount Barker, Nairne and Bridgewater, where the giant waterwheel (known as The Old Rumbler) still turns. Callington Situated on the Bremer River, Callington is a well preserved microcosm of a mid 19th century Australian mining community, with the whole township included on the Register of the National Estate. The Bremer Mine sites, together with individual significant buildings within the township, are also listed on both the Register of the National Estate and the State Heritage Register. Hahndorf This historic village, settled by German immigrants in 1839, is Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement. Many of the original buildings are still intact, including the Hahndorf Academy, which houses several galleries and a German heritage museum. Hans Heysen’s ‘The Cedars’, Hahndorf Visitors can take a guided tour of the historic home and studio of famous Australian artist Sir Hans Heysen, which houses many original artworks. The famous Heysen Trail also traverses the extensive property. Johnston Oakbank brewery Established in 1843 by the Scottish Johnston brothers, who settled Oakbank and Woodside, the complex is still intact and sells wine, cordials and soft drinks to the public. Jupiter Creek, Echunga Walk the self-guided Jupiter Creek Heritage Trail to gain an insight into the gold rush era that swept through the Adelaide Hills in the mid 1800s. Don’t forget your torch for the 80 metre Phoenix Tunnel underground walk. Mount Lofty House Built between 1852 and 1858 by prominent businessman Arthur Hardy, as the family’s summer home, Mount Lofty House was all but destroyed by the Ash Wednesday bushfires in 1983. It’s now been restored to its former glory and boasts a grand boutique hotel and restaurant overlooking Piccadilly Valley. Mount Torrens Officially declared a State Heritage Area, Mount Torrens is recognised as one of the Hills’ most well preserved historic towns. Old Woollen Mill, Lobethal A historic precinct, the Old Woollen Mill in Lobethal reflects the early industrial era in Australia. It was home to the former Onkaparinga Woollen Mills, a manufacturing icon, that operated for 122 years until its closure in 1992 and was where the famous Onkaparinga blankets were made. The building is now a popular tourist destination housing several cellar doors, a micro brewery, museum and market, with a café, gallery and providore. Museums National Motor Museum, Birdwood Originally the site of the historic Birdwood Mill, built in the mid 1800s, it’s now home to the National Motor Museum, which houses an extensive collection of Australia’s motoring history. Since 1965, millions of people have enjoyed discovering the National Motor Museum. An international centre for the collection, research, preservation, education and display of Australian road transport history, the National Motor Museum is more than a collection of vehicles. It is a social history of the way we were, the way we are now and the way of the future. Prospect Hill Community Museum This pioneer museum has a range of exhibits housed in period buildings, with the Dairy Museum and the Ash Wednesday Exhibition. The Hahndorf Academy, Hahndorf The Hahndorf Academy exhibits objects relating to the life of Hahndorf’s pioneering families, including religious and scholastic artefacts. A selection of drawings were donated by Sir Hans Heysen and are now on permanent display.
2015-2016 Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide
2013 Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide