AUGUSTA - A BIT OF HISTORY

 

 

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Latitude 34 19' Longitude 115 09'

The most south-westerly town in the State of Western Australia, Augusta is located 320 km (200 miles) south of Perth and 43 km (27 miles) south of Margaret River.

The first recorded sighting of the south-west coast of Western Australia was by the "Leeuwin" (meaning Lioness) in 1622.

Cape Leeuwin was named by Matthew Flinders in December 1801 when he arrived there aboard HMS Investigator to begin his epic circumnavigation of Australia. It is where two Oceans meet, namely the Indian and Southern.

Following the two earlier white settlements at King George Sound (Albany) in 1826 and the Swan River Settlement (Perth) in 1829, Augusta became the third oldest settlement in Western Australia with the landing on 2nd. May 1830 by Governor Stirling, leading a party of settlers on board the "Emily Taylor" to the mouth of a river and inlet reported by sealers.

Exploring the river, Stirling named it the Blackwood, after Vice Admiral Sir Henry Blackwood, under whom he had served.

Stirling also decided to declare a townsite at the mouth of the river, naming it Augusta in honour of Princess Augusta Sophia (1768-1840), 2nd daughter of King George III and his wife, Queen Consort Charlotte.

The Augusta Settlers were led by the Molloy's, the Bussells and the Turners, with their families and employees, as well as some independent Settlers.

The 1880's saw the timber industry expand in the area with the building of a mill at Kudardup and jetties at Flinders Bay and Hamelin Bay.

In 1895, the pioneer of the timber industry in the area, MC Davies, helped build the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse (Australia's tallest).

A new wave of arrivals came in the 1920's, encouraged by the Group Settlement Scheme, thereby opening up the area to various forms of Farming.

Today, the Augusta region is a thriving community with a population that is growing all the time as people discover this very special corner of the world.