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Yundamindera (also known as The Granites)

Location: Shire - Leonora
Coordinates
Direction - Access to the former town of Yundamindera can be taken by a now little used gravel track heading south-east from just past the modern Murrin Murrin nickel mine. After crossing the Old Laverton Road, the track heads in a straight line south-east for about 40 kilometres. Alternatively, the Glenhorn-Yundamindera Road can be taken from the Malcolm rail siding.

This was gazetted in September 1901

Cemetery
Number of known graves - 10


First Burial

July 3 1901 Jeremiah Crowley aged 31 committed suicide.


Last burial

March 29 1923 John Hales a 51 year old miner committed suicide.


 

Age at death (Years)

 

0 – 1

 3

20 – 29

 1

60 – 69

 -

2 – 5

 -

30 – 39

 2 

70 – 79

 -

6 – 9

 1 

40 – 49

 1

80 +

 -

10 – 19

 -

50 – 59

 1  unknown  1
Occupation

Blacksmith

 1 

Jockey

 1 

Miner

 3 

Wife

 1 

   
Cause of death

Consumption

 2 

Dysentry

 1 

Pneumonia

 1 

   

Stillborn

 1

Suicide

 2

Typhoid Fever

 1

unknown   1
 
Town
Discovery

Gold was discovered in the area in the late 1897 after gold at the nearby field of Pennyweight Point began to run out. Two prospectors named Wood and his nephew Deimal found gold near the Granites and following an influx of prospectors and miners.


Early History

By 1900 there were twenty five mines running along a north-west to south east trend, both sides of the present road. In 1901the townsite was gazetted. The goldfield warden proposed the name Yundamindera which he had been told by the locals was the Aboriginal name for the area. The meaning of the name is unknown.

Some of the mines that were established in 1899 were the Great Bonaparte, the Queen of the May and the Golden Treasure South. Water for the town was sourced from nearby wells and soaks
In 1901 a branch of the Western Australian Bank was opened in the town and a local board of health was also established.

By 1903 a coach ran twice a week to Murrin Murrin and in January1903 the local progress committee were in discussion with the Education Department to appoint a teacher for the district as a result of "the good number of children of school-going age about the town". The teacher, Mrs. Sara Ramsden, was appointed in September.

In 1903 the government subsidised battery was constructed near the town and was still operating in the area by 1919 and crushed packets of ore for most of the mines in the locale.

In 1904 the area experienced another gold rush when alluvial gold was found by Larkins and party about 30 miles (48 km) south east of the town in. Over sixty men were working the field by December and obtaining fine gold. Several miners from the Potosi mine left to proceed to the find.

In November 1905 the construction of a windmill and storage tank with a capacity of 100,000 imperial gallons (454,609 L) to draw water from a government well located close to town was completed by the Public Works Department
May 1907 The Potosi Consolidated Company virtually ceased mining operations after experiencing financial difficulties. The Government Huntingdon Mill was also closed at about the same time causing concern dismantled among local prospectors who had over 400 tons of ore to crush. It was hoped that ore could be processed at the Potosi Battery.

In November 1907 a 10 head battery was purchased and installed at the Golden Treasure mine.

A coach service ran once a week in 1908 from Coolgardie via Menzies to the town.

By April 1910 the Golden Treasure gold mine ceased operations with all the equipment being sold off. On the final day 38 tons of ore were crushed with 111 ounces (3,146.8 g) of gold being recovered.

In 1921 the battery at the Battlesville gold mine was dismantled and resurrected at the Queen of the May mine in town. Ore from the Big Stone lease that was being mined at the time was also expected to be processed at the new battery.

Buildings were carted away and by 1914 the only remaining business was the hotel which itself closed in 1924. In 1925 the Surveyor General advised that the township was dead.

By 1936 the site was a ghost town with the old Granite's Hotel being used as a shearers quarters since 1925.


Margaret Hill

Dr Charles Laver

Interesting Information

Over 100 workers went on strike at the Potosi mine in 1904 when a notice of reduction of wages was posted at the mine. The men were all mostly members of, at the time, unregistered AWA with some being members of the AMA. The Potosi Gold mining company later initiated a lockout and the case was taken before the local Warden's court. In November the Warden, Mr. Ewing, found in favour of the workers and the company was fined £10 and costs.

William Samuel Hill (30 May 1855 - 2 November 1924) was born in Tasmania, in Westbury near Launceston, but lived in at least three other states. For some time he lived in Yundamindera and his wife Margaret died after only two years in the appalling conditions on the fields, of tuberculosis (then called phthisis) on 14 October 1901. She was buried on the Yundamindera Cemetery. For his story (which is very interesting) go to Garry Gillard's site.

Dr Laver (after whom Laverton is named) once owned Yundermindra Station. See the story at Ehive collection.

Webb did not open his “Bulletin Hotel” until 1900 but he ran a few Goldfields pubs and Bertha Lawson (Lawson’s wife) herself would return to the Bulletin Hotel in 1905 after her separation from Lawson, to work for Charlie Webb. Charlie would have no doubt written to Lawson telling him of the opening of his latest pub, The Bulletin Hotel at Yudamindra in the WA Goldfields. The original manuscript of ‘The Bulletin Hotel’ was found in July 2003 in Perth, in a house previously the home of past Premier, Phil Collier, who was a great admirer of Lawson. To read the poem go to Outback Family History.


Source Information

Wikepedia
Outback Family History
Mindat loc-268825
Caladenia New - Ghosttowns

Special thanks to...

Research Consultants

Swan Genealogy

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