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Comet Vale Cemetery

Location: - Shire Menzies

Coordinates: 121.1253E 29.9331S

96 Km north of Kalgoorlie on the Goldfields Highway.

 

Number of graves - 26

First Burial
25th January 1908 George Williams, a miner who died aged 51 years, burnt to death in a camp.

Last Burial
About the 4th of June 1933 Patrick Maher, an adult.

Age at Death

0 – 1 year 

8

20 – 29 years 

1

60 – 69 years

 

2 – 5 years

30 – 39 years

5

70 – 79 years

1

6 – 9 years

 

40 – 49 years

2

80 + years

 

10 – 19 years

 

50 – 59 years

3

Unknown

5

Cause of death

Accident

1

Infection of bowel

1

Mining accident

1

Stillborn

3

Dysentery

1

Marasmus

1

Pneumonia

2

Suicide

1

Heart failure

7

Meningitis

1

Premature birth

6

unknown

1

Occupations

Housewife

1

Married woman

2

Publican & carrier

1

Laundress

1

Miner

7

   

Discovery
A prospector, Dan Baker is credited with the initial gold discovery in 1894 when he found an outcrop of granite containing gold. He made a claim, the lady Margaret which he later sold for 32, 000 pounds.

Early History

The town site was named after a comet called Gale, seen in the sky at the time gold was discovered in the area. By 1895 the town had a population of approximately 500, and by 1897 the townspeople were demanding a post-office. The postmaster general instructed postmasters at Menzies and Googarrie to prepare daily mail bags for Comet Vale which were then distributed at one of the stores in town. The Comet Vale Hotel was established some time prior to 1898
Two mines were in production in 1900 named Lady Margaret and Long tunnel. The Gladsome mine was operating before 1905.

More mines opened later including Sand Queen and Happy Jack both of which continued to operate after World War I.

The town was gazetted in 1916. A police station had been established in the town and was destroyed in 1916. A coach service used to service the town coming from Goongarrie and continuing to the Ularring district.]

Gold mining in the area ceased in 1938 during the final years of the Great Economic Depression and the threat of the Second World War looming but up until that time the area had produced 245,000 tonnes of ore with 181,000 ounces being recovered.

In 1921 fresh water was found in old shafts not far from town to replace water requirements that had been sent by rail from Kalgoorlie.

Old Gladsome Mine, Comet Vale, Western Australia, ca. 1928

Mildred Walshaw: Lady Gold-miner
Mildred was the only permanent resident of the ghost town of Comet Vale and was most likely the only active woman prospector with her own gold mine in Australia in 1957
Her father was Dan Baker, who discovered gold at Comet Vale in 1894.

SOURCE INFORMATION
Wikipedia
Outback Family History
Mindat
Mildred Walshaw’s story.https://www.goldfieldstories.com/post/mildred-walshaw-lady-gold-miner

Special thanks to...

Research Consultants

Swan Genealogy

  • PO Box 1988
    Wangara DC, Western Australia 6947

  • 0409 680 207

  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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