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Hankinson Fountain and National Bank

Hankinson Fountain and National Bank

History of the Narrandera Shire

Historic Narrandera - A River Town

History of Narrandera

Captain Charles Sturt, the famous explorer, is credited with being the first white man to observe the area that later was to become known as Narrandera, "The Gateway to the MIA" and the great south- west in the heart of the Riverina Region. Sturt, who passed through the district on December 12, 1829, was not, as many people contended, the first explorer to cast eyes on the Murrumbidgee River. The upper Murrumbidgee, the "Big Water", was first discovered in April 1821, by Charles Throsby.

The name Narrandera is a derivative of the Aboriginal words Narrungerra, which translated means "Place of goanna or lizard". Narrandera had its first recorded mention as a pastoral station or run (Narrandera Run) in 1848, at which time the property held by Mr Edward Flood comprised approximately 76.800 acres. The Borough of Narrandera was constituted by proclamation dated March 17, 1885, and gazetted the following day. The centenary of Local Government in Narrandera was celebrated in 1985.

Narrandera's early days were one of frontier tensions, with squatters in search of their fortune via the land coming into conflict with the Wiradjuri people who had long nurtured and exploited the land and waterways. The Wiradjuri and the harsh conditions often beat back the onslaught of the European, but disease and superior firepower saw the local clan, the Narrungderra all but destroyed. The last major battle took place near Massacre Island, and is said to have left only one survivor.

There is much more to the story of Narrandera. You can read more in the potted history, click below.

A complete history of the Narrandera Shire (authored by historian Bill Gammage) is available for purchase from the Narrandera Tourist Information Centre.

Below are some the historic attractions, which can be found around the town:

Royal Doulton Fountain - Memorial Gardens off East Street
Memorial Gardens - These gardens bear testimony to those who served in all theatres of warfare involving Australians.
Figtree - estimated to be 150 years old - cnr of King and Cadell Street
AMP Building - Twynam Street (Spanish influence
Oakbank Brewery Tower - Oakbank Road - once Lincolns then Oakbank Brewery, its last productive days were as a cordial (soft drink) factory.
Mon Repos - 43 Douglas Street - Queen Anne style residence built in the late 1890's by pioneering Roach family -later owned by members of a private club for pastoralists and called the Murrumbidgee Club. As of this date it is a family home and houses an antique store.
Wreck of the PS Wagga Wagga - when the river is low you can view the remains of one of the last river boats. The PS Wagga Wagga was driven aground on the 11th of November 1918 the day that marked the end of WWI hostilities. Please contact the Visitor's Centre for directions to the site.

Contact details
Narrandera Visitor's Centre
02 6959 1766 (ph)
02 6959 2788 (fax)

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