Announced: 2011Sidney Edwin Hocking
Location: 17 Hannan Street
Patrick Hannan along with Dan Shea and Tom Flannagan found gold near mount charlotte in June 189. This fine started the gold rush to what became known as Hannan’s and laid the foundations of the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder.
One of three Irishman who found gold, along with Tom Flanagan and Dan O’Shea, in what became Kalgoorlie. Hannan had been prospecting in WA for some years and joined the rush to Coolgardie. It was from Coolgardie that Hannan, Flanagan and Shea left to go to Mount Yule following a prospecting party that left the day before. The party made it to what is now National Route 94 along Outridge Terrace were they found gold in a gully of a low range of hills. That find started the rush to what became Kalgoorlie. He stayed on the goldfields for about 6 months prospecting before moving on. Hannan came back to Kalgoorlie in 1898 for a week or so, then never returned.
He was the youngest in his prospecting party being 53 years old at the time, therefore was tasked with riding his horse to Coolgardie to make the claim. The area was also known as Hannan’s find or Hannans.
Announced: 2012Dr Charles Harold Warman, OAM
In 1895 Sidney Hocking published Kalgoorlie-Boulder’s first daily newspaper, the ‘Kalgoorlie Miner’ and launched ‘Hocking & Co’ in 1896. Both the paper and company have become synonymous with Kalgoorlie-Boulder and continue to operate today.
Sidney Edwin Hocking (1859-1935), newspaper proprietor, was born on 24 December 1859 at Nairne, South Australia, son of Nicholas Hocking, blacksmith, and his wife Sarah, née Shore. Educated at Prince Alfred College, he joined the Adelaide Advertiser in 1874 as a general reporter and became the paper's mining writer at the Teetulpa goldfield, Baker's Creek and Hillgrove. In 1889 he went to the new mining field at Broken Hill, New South Wales, as representative for a syndicate of evening papers in Melbourne and Sydney. Leaving Broken Hill in 1893, he arrived at Coolgardie, Western Australia, next year and sent articles to the Adelaide Advertiser and Register, the Melbourne Age and Argus and the West Australian. With James MacCallum Smith, and later joined by his brother Percy, he floated a company to publish the weekly Goldfields Courier, which he edited, and the daily Golden Age. He also ran a stationer's and newsagent's business and speculated in town lots.
When the new Kalgoorlie goldfield began to drain the life from Coolgardie, Hocking inspected the fabulous 'Golden Mile' and decided that its future was assured. He and his partners sold the Coolgardie company and in August 1895 Hocking bought the weekly Kalgoorlie Western Argus, founded by Mott Bros., the previous November. After buying an up-to-date plant, Hocking also launched the daily Kalgoorlie Miner. He temporarily employed (Sir) Hal Colebatch as editor and, in Adelaide, recruited (Sir) John Kirwan. In 1896 he launched Hocking & Co. Ltd with himself, Percy, another brother Ernest, Kirwan and their printer W. W. Willcock as shareholders. Hocking became mining editor, leaving the business management of the two papers and an associated stationery and job-printing house to Percy and the editorial management to Kirwan. When Percy died in 1900 Hocking took over the commercial side and Kirwan, when he became too deeply involved in politics, was replaced by Edward Hamilton Irving who managed the paper until his death in 1929.
Hocking shared a house with his sister Emma until his marriage on 15 August 1900 to 21- year-old Effie Fenn; they had eight children. For many years chairman of the Kalgoorlie Racing Club and president of the Kalgoorlie Chamber of Commerce, he was also almost permanent president of the Fresh Air League, which sent goldfields children for seaside holidays. He was an enthusiastic gardener, who is said to have planted the first of Kalgoorlie's many peppercorn trees, and in his later years he enjoyed golf. His reputation as a good boss was valuable in a town like Kalgoorlie, dominated by the democratic ethos; the accepted legend that he had never sacked a man was not true, but he was certainly remarkably lenient. In 1895, and from 1907, he served on the Kalgoorlie Municipal Council and was mayor in 1909-10. Modest and intensely domestic, however, he generally shunned the limelight. He left Kalgoorlie rarely and was only twice overseas, first in 1899, when he purchased modern newspaper plant, and in 1930 when he was a delegate to the Imperial Press Conference in London. In an endeavour to keep his newspapers unbiased he avoided political involvement.
Hocking died on 29 January 1935 during a heat wave and was buried in Kalgoorlie cemetery. His estate, valued for probate at £54,769 in Western Australia and Victoria, was left to his family, all of whom survived him. Three of his sons became directors of Hocking & Co. Ltd.
Announced: 2012Mrs Lorna Mitchell, MBE OAM JP
Born in Kalgoorlie, Charles Warman invented and manufactured the Warman Slurry Pump, with innovations that greatly improved the efficiency of slurry pumps worldwide and which have been used in the mining industry for over 50 years.
Dr Charles Harold Warman was born in Kalgoorlie, Australia in 1910. At 14 years of age, Charles Warman won a scholarship to attend the Western Australian School of Mines where he graduated in 1931.
In the early 1930s, he worked as a draftsman at a gold in in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia. He saw that some improvements in slurry pump technology were needed and set out to improve the designs. By 1938 he had made several improvements to slurry pump design and had taken out patents on this ideas. He improved the seal so that it was simple and required little maintenance. He introduced rubber lining which could be replaced easily. The pumps were manufactured and marketed from Kalgoorlie until 1955, when they accounted for about 90 percent of the Western Australian market.
Charles continued to improve the um design. His company released new generation of pumps in1950 and 1962. In the late 1950s the company moved to Sydney and built a new factory at Atarmon. A factory opened in North America in the early 1960s and in 1969 the company was taken over by a large mining group. At the end of the century, Warman International had its main office in Sydney along with their manufacturing, marketing and distribution facilities. Warman-designed pumps were being manufactured in the USA, UK and Brazil, and there were licensees in Japan, China, the Philippines and India. There was a sales office in nearly every country in the world.
A graduate and past lecturer of Curtin University of Technology’s Western Australian School of Mines (WASM), Dr Warman was one of WAMS’s most accomplished graduates and was named by Engineers Australia as one of the top ten Australian Engineers of the 20th century. He was inducted into the Australian Prospectors and Miners Hall of Fame on 23rd October 2009 and was recognised for his extraordinary and unique lifelong contribution to the Australian minerals industry by being awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science in 1983, He was also awarded an Order of Australia for service to engineering, the mining industry and the community.
Just as significant, he also played an important role in the early days of the development if iron ore mining in Western Australia by helping to develop the Mt Newman Iron Ore operations.
Dr Warman also established MD Research in Sydney in 1969, where he supported and contributed to education, postgraduate scholarships, student competitions and infrastructure development.
DR C H Warman passed away on 11th July 2008, aged 98.
Announced:Sir Laurence Brodie-Hall, AO CMG
Mrs Lorna Mitchell’s exemplary services to the community of Kalgoorlie-Boulder through her work with children’s education, community and charitable organisations are unsurpassed.
Mrs Lorna Mitchell MBE OAM JP was nominated for her significant and positive contribution to the community of Kalgoorlie-Boulder for nearly 80 years by the Goldfields Repertory Club in 2013. Lorna Mitchell was the first female elected to the Town of Kalgoorlie Council, where she served for 20 years. Lorna Mitchell also served many charitable and community organisations in our City throughout her life. These include but are not limited to:
- Goldfields Aged Care
- The Arts Board
- The Muscular Dystrophy Association
- The Women’s Refuge
- The Red Cross
- Goldfields Childcare Centre
- Instigating and coordinating the Spring Festival
- The Goldfields Repertory Club where she served as President for 29 years
Mrs Mitchell also made an outstanding contribution to the education of children with disabilities. In 1951, she became the Headmistress of the Boulder Special Education Centre where she served for over 20 years. Mrs Mitchell has also been a long serving Justice of Peace.
Mrs Mitchell’s contribution to the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder is widely acknowledged and she has received many awards and honours including:
- The British Empire Medal for Community Service in 1967
- Western Australian Woman of the Year in 1975
- The Order of Australia Medal in 1995
- Freeman of the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder in 2007
Announced: 2013Mrs Norma King, OAM
Sir Brodie-Hall was an influential figure in Western Australia’s mining industry and a strong advocate of mining education and the promotion of the WA School of Mines.
Laurence Brodie-Hall (Brodie) was born in London in 1910 and migrated to Australia in 1924 where he worked as a farm-hand in NSW before venturing to Western Australia in 1937. He and a friend bought a garage business but went broke during the depression. He then went gold mining in the Murchison where he began at the very bottom – as an underground miner. He enjoyed the social life in the Goldfields where he engaged in amateur theatricals, played the violin and sang- much to the delight of his many friends.
In 1934 Brodie joined WMC’s Triton mine near Cue as a machine miner. From there he went to Kalgoorlie took a shift job at the Kalgurli Ore Treatment Company’s plant and began a part- time course at the WA School of mines. Nest he went to work at eth Emperor in iin Fiji in 1939, but when war broke out he returned to WA and worked as a Plant superintendent on Claude de Bernales’ Bailey mine at Coolgardie. When Japan entered the war Brodie enlisted as a sapper in the Royal Australian Engineers and by the end of the war he had risen to the rank of Captain in the 2/2nd Mechanical Equipment Company.
When demobilised he returned to Kalgoorlie and complete Mining and Metallurgy Diplomas at eh WAS School of mines under the Commonwealth Rehabilitation Scheme. In 1948 WMC’s managing Director, (sir) Lindsay Clark, offered him a job as junior mine geologist at Norseman. He wasn’t there long before he was transferred to Melbourne as Technical Assistant to (Sir) Lindsay Clark.
In June 1951, after having worked on proposals to re-establish gold mining at Bullfinch, Brodie was appointed General Superintendent of Great Western Consolidated with the parting comment from the Chairman, Sir Walter Massy-Greene, ‘You made the estimates, you go and make them work’. For the next seven years he worked at Bullfinch where his reputation for technical innovation and good management was established. Unfortunately the combination of high inflation and below-expected grade resulted in financial disaster for the company.
In 1958 Brodie was prompted to WMC’s General Superintendent in WA, and in 1962 he became and Executive Director. In this role he directed the considerable broadening of WMC’s operations including the major expansion of Gold Mines of Kalgoorlie, re-opening of the Mount Charlotte mine the formations of Three Springs Talc and Alcoa of Australia. He was directly involved in long-term contract to Japan in March 1966. It was due to his encouragement and support that WMC discovered nickel sulphides in Kambalda in January 1966. The rapid establishment of Kambalda Nickle Operations in 1967, the Kwinana Nickle Refinery in 1970 and the Kalgoorlie Nickel Smelter in 1972 were among his major achievements.
In 1967 Brodie moved to Perth where in involved himself increasingly in industry and community affairs. He was President of the WA Chambers of mines from 1970 to 1974, a member of the Australian Mining Industry Council and President of the Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy in 1973. He was awarded the Institute Medal in 1976 and Hon Life Membership in 188. He served in many Government and Advisory bodies including the WA Environmental Protection Council the CSIRO Council and was Chairman of the State Committee of CSIRO for many years. He received the WA Citizen of the Year Award n 1974, was made a Companion of the Order of Australia (AO) in the Australian Day Honours in 193 in recognising of his significant contribution to the mining industry in Australia.
Following his retirement as an Executive director of WMC n 1975, Brodie retained his position on boards of WMC and Alcoa of Australia for a further seven years. He was Chairman of Kalgoorlie Lake View Pty Ltd, Kalgoorlie Mining Associates, Central Norseman Gold Cooperation NL, and Three Springs Talc, until 1982 and Gold Mines of Kalgoorlie Ltd, until 1985. He never lost faith in gold and worked tirelessly to maintain viable gold mining operations at Norseman and Kalgoorlie against falling prices, rising costs and sometimepessimistic shareholders. Outside the WMC Group Sir Laurence was Chairman of Westerntech Innovations Corp and Energy Research Group (ERG), and a director of Coolgardie Gold NL and a number of non-listed enterprises.
For many years Sir Laurence maintenance a keen interest in the WA School of Mines and was chairman of the School’s Board of Management for a long period. He devoted himself to raising both the status of the School and a considerable amount of money to provide for its further development. He also served on the council of the Western Australian Institute of Technology (WAIT which became Curtin University) and received an honorary Doctorate of Technology from WAIT in 1978. He was appointed a Fellow of Curtain University from his many years of service to tertiary education. His name is commemorated in the ‘L C Brodie’sHall Administration Centre’ at Agricola College, Kalgoorlie, the ‘Brodie-Hall Research and Consultancy Centre’ at Curtin University and ‘Brodie-Hall Drive’ at Technology Park near Perth. On receiving the AusIMM Institute Medal in 1976 Brodie remarked, ‘The citation could in time be paraphrased to make and appropriate epitaph which would proclaim, The success he achieved, he owed to the mining industry, education and the community.’ Sir Laurence was interested not only in academic qualifications but also in the personal development of individuals and there are many in the industry today ready to acknowledge the help, guidance and encouragement given them by ‘the man who made it from the bottom to the top’ without losing the human touch.
Brodie-Hall died in 2006.
Announced:Emeritus Professor Odwyn Jones, OAM
As a respected Author and Historian, Mrs Norma King‘s published works on the history of the Goldfields are a tribute to our past and a legacy for future generations.
Mrs Normal King was nominated by The Eastern Goldfields Historical Society for her tremendous contribution to the recording and documenting history of the Western Australia Goldfields. Mrs Norma King’s work on the History of the Goldfields region is a tribute to our past and a legacy for future generations.
Published work include the following: Booklets
- 1972 The Corroboree
- 1973 Bushrangers on the Burbanks Road
- 1973 The fabulous Golden Mile
- 1973 Ghost Towns of the North Country
- 1975 Early days around Coolgardie
- 1976 Gold Finds near Kambalda
- 1976 Rushes and finds near Old Kambalda
- 1976 When Hannan Street was Young
- 1972 Nickel Country-Gold Country
- 1980 Colourful Tales of the Western Australian Goldfields
- 1988 The Daughters of Midas
- 1992 Wings over the Goldfields: The 50 year history of the Eastern Goldfields section of the Royal Flying Doctors Service
- 1995 The Voice of the Goldfields: 100 years of the Kalgoorlie Miner
- 1996 The Hannans Club: The first 100 years
- 2003 Then they call me Norma. Following Norma’s retirement to Freemantle, she wrote and published her own Biography.
Beginning of the early 1970’s, Norma wrote countless historical articles for the Kalgoorlie Miner for the next 25 years. Bound copies of these articles are held in the library of the Eastern Goldfields Historical Society. Norma was a Life Member of
- WA section of the Fellowship of Australian Writers
- The Eastern Goldfields Historical Society
- The Golden Mile Art Group
In 2013, Norma King received the OAM for her service to the Community as an Historian.
Announced:James (Jim) Brennan, OAM
Professor Jones was the Resident Director of the Western Australian School of Mines from 1976-1991 and was a strong advocate for the campus to remain in Kalgoorlie.
Emeritus Professor Ifan Odwyn Jones was in charge of the Kalgoorlie-Boulder based WA school of Mines between 176 and 1991 and living in Kalgoorlie-Boulder during this time.
“Odwyn was Principal of the WA School of Mines at Kalgoorlie and Dean of Mining and Mineral Technology at WAIT/Curtain University of Technology for 15 years. During a period of outstanding development and resurgence of the Kalgoorlie Campus.
Thereafter he became Director of University Development (International) and Directory of the Brodie-Hall Research and Consultancy Centre for a further 4 years before retirement. He is a long-standing member of the Minerals and Energy Research Institute of WA (MERWA) and is currently Chairman of its Minerals Research Advisory Committee.”
During his time Prof Jones was instrumental in fighting attempts to relocate the school from the Goldfields to Perth. The Whitlam Government spent heavily on education in its tem of Government,, this spending was severely curtailed by the next (Frazer) government and funding was progressively diminished. This resulted in the Federal Government attempting to reorganise the tertiary education system. It was proposed that the School of Mines should be in federated association with the Eastern Goldfields Technical College. This was fought for five years, until 1982, when the proposal was abandoned, and the School of Mines was left with the WA Institute of Technology, and given increased autonomy, with its own Board of Management.
Awards and recognitions include;
- Prof Jones was awarded the Order of Australia (OAM) medal for service to the mining industry and to the Kalgoorlie-Boulder community
- Chairman, Minerals Research Advisory Committee, Minerals and Energy Research Institute of Western Australia, since 1998, deputy Chairman, 1983-1998; Scholarship student Awards committee, since 1998; Ministerial appointee, since 1981
- Chairman, Advisory Boards, Central TAFE, 1996-2001
- Chairman, Board of Directors, Resources Information Unit Ltd, 1986-1992
- Director, Kalgurli Mines Ltd, 1985-1989
- Member, Selection Panel, State Government Science and innovation Studentship Awards 2004-2005
- National Vice President, Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, 1994; National councillor, 1991-1994; chairman, Eastern Goldfields Branch, 1990; Fellow
- Chairman, Mining Metallurgical and Materials Engineering Panel, Institute of Engineers Australia, 1984-1987; accreditation Board Member, 1984-1987
- Fellow, Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, UK
- Member, Federal Government Trade Mission to China, 1993
- Member, Western Australian Government Trade Missions to Iran, 1992 and 1994
- Consultant to Government agencies in Thailand, Papua New Guinee and Iran regarding proposed education programs, 1992-1993
- Member, IDP Education Australia mission assessing need for Australian educational services in Kuwait, 1992
- Member, Joint Australian-Indonesian Postgraduate Selection Committee, Australian International Development Assistance Bureau, 1984-1985 and 1990; Other programs in the Indonesian Mining and Energy Sector 1989, and in Burma 1987
- President, Welsh Society of Western Australia Inc
- Vice-President, Perth’s Welsh Free Church
- Past Chairman, Property and Finance Committee, Como Uniting Church
- Committee Member, Christian Men’s Association
- Past Vice-President and committee member, Australian-Britain Society (WA Branch)
- Council Member, Eastern Goldfields Branch, Royal Flying Doctors Service, 1990- 1991
- Curtin University Fellowship Award, 2017
- Order of Australia Medal, 2006
- ‘Odwyn Jones Mining and Surveying Building’ at the WA School of Mines, Curtin University of Technology, was named in his honour, 2004
- Emeritus Professorship, Curtin University of Technology, 1995
- Gold Bicentennial Medal, Graduates Association of the WA Scholl of Mines, 1988
- Citizen of the Goldfields, 1978
Announced: 2016Samuel William Pearce & William George Brookman
Mr Brennan served Australia in WWII and was a strong advocate for Aboriginal welfare in the Goldfields region, with many Aboriginal organisations still in existence as a result of his contribution.
James Brennan served Australia in WWII and was a POW in Italy and Germany during the war. He fought alongside Italian and Slavic partisans during the war also. After the war Brennan was active in Aboriginal welfare for many years. He formed the Eastern Goldfields Native Centre in 1965 and was President until 1971. He was chairman of the Aboriginal Council, Aboriginal Consultative Committee and Aboriginal Advisory Council in Kalgoorlie.
James Brennan was active in Aboriginal welfare in the region from 1945 until his death. He fought for and gained many liberties for the Aboriginal people before the 1967 referendum. He believed all those that fought for Australia in a time of war should have the same rights as everyone else and not penalised because of race.
Many Aboriginal organisations that still exist are due to the activities of James Brennan in the latter part of the 20th Century. James Brennan was awarded the “Medal of the Order of Australia” (OAM), in recognition of service to Aboriginal welfare. The Parkesville Aboriginal Complex that was opened in 1982 was named Ninga Mia in honour of Mr. Brennan in 1983.
Announced: 2017Ross Rogers
Mr Pearce and Mr Brookman were key contributors to the region’s mining industry. As prospecting partners, they developed the gold mines of the Golden Mile.
Samuel William Pearce
Sam Pearce, a prospector with a “nose for gold” was the second member of the Adelaide Prospecting Party to travel to the Eastern Goldfields. Exploring south of the Hannans find, through dense bush, he found first the Ivanhoe, then the thirty four acres of the Great Boulder. He endured the hardships of water restriction and the hazard of aboriginal groups passing through to peg that extremely valuable property and a large number of leases incorporated into the Coolgardie Mining and Prospecting Company, successor to the syndicate. These included the Boulder East, Lake View, the Adelaide North, South and East (Associated), the Royal Mint the Iron Duke, the Iron Monarch and several others. He perceived the value of Cammilleri’s extraction of gold from the unlikely porphyry rock influencing him to peg the large number of leases which allowed the company to dominate the Golden Mile and develop it to become the major source of income for the state at the time. Pearce’s experience in African, American and Australian Goldfields gave him the ability to discern the value of the Golden Mile rocks and the drive to make the most of it where others had just smaller less significant claims. When the company was sold, he returned to single prospecting and eventually retired to some properties near Northam.
William George Brookman
William George Brookman arrived on the Eastern Goldfields with Samuel Pearce as prospectors and partners of the Adelaide Prospecting Party syndicate. Both explored extensively south of Hannans find, Pearce finding most of the gold bearing areas while Brookman did the claims. Brookman was the business head, organising the financing, mainly through gold sales of the planning and execution of underground mine production and the search and purchase of the machinery equipment required, along with other members of the syndicate. He spun a 150 pound syndicate into 30 million pound set of operations (1950’s valuation) and made the Golden Mile into a massive underground operation of many mines, the Ivanhoe, Great Boulder, Bank of England, Lake View Consols, Kalgoorlie Mint among many others. He was ridiculed by others for the initial extensive 34 acres of Brookman’s Sheep Run but he soon silenced his critics as he made the Golden Mile the powerhouse of Western Australia of the day. London beckoned and he floated a number of companies on the English stock exchange before returning to Western Australia. He had been elected to the Legislative Council in absentia and was also elected Mayor of Perth but retired after 8 months. He then settled in Mandurah.
Announced:Professor Barry Marshall
Ross Rogers made many and ongoing contributions to the community and quality of life in Kalgoorlie-Boulder, and was a passionate advocate for tourism, heritage, arts and culture in our City.
Ross Rogers was born 17th august, 1924, Subiaco W.A. He arrived in Kalgoorlie Christmas Day 1949. He married Dora Celia Hays on 19th April 1958 at the Wesley church Kalgoorlie. Ross resided at 162 Boulder Road, Kalgoorlie with his wife and four children. Contributions
- Goldfields Repertory Club Vice President and House manager for many years. Involved in production of 67 plays Hand anted walls and proscenium over 1953
- Co-Founder Goldfields Medical Fund 1953
- Founder of Goldfields Dispensing Fund 1951
- Formed Saints Badminton Club 1962
- Organised Big Beat Dances – proceeds for Railway Bowling Club
- Stood for Mayor against Bert Hammons and Harry Eade
- Formed “Young Liberals’ 1961 – with Peter Browne (Federal Member for Kalgoorlie)
- Concerts organised in Caledonian Hall
- President and Life Member – Kalgoorlie Chamber of commerce (member 1950 – 1995)
- Managed M Kelly Ltd chemists for 47 years
- Formed Kalgoorlie-Boulder Development commission now G.R.D.A.C.-Goldfields Regional development
- Founder/Chairman Goldfields Regional Education Council 1971
- Initiated the School of Mines Advisory committee – Technical School (now Kalgoorlie-TAFE W.A. Central Regional)
- Founder/Chairman – Goldfields Travel Association
Announced: 2018Charles Cooke Hunt
Professor Barry Marshall was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2005 for his ground breaking research with Robin Warren, AC into Helicobactor pylori, challenging decades of medical doctrines.
Professor Barry Marshall was born on 30th September, 1951, in Kalgoorlie and lived both Kalgoorlie and Carnarvon, before moving to Perth at the age of seven. He attended Newman College and the University of Western Australia, where he received a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery in 1975.
Professor Barry Marshall is known around the world for his discoveries regarding the cause of Peptic Ulcers. His bold self-experimentation led to the complete change in the treatment of the condition world-wide. Professor Barry Marshall was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2005 for his ground breaking research with Robin Warren, AC into Helicobactor pylori, challenging decades of medical doctrines.
Announced: 2017Thomas Leslie Axford, VC
Charles Cooke Hunt mapped the area now known as the Eastern Goldfields from 1864 to 1866. ‘Hunts Track’ with its life giving watering points spaced along its route allowed prospectors and explorers to travel into the heart of the Eastern Goldfields.
Hunts track observations and water points assisted in the discovery of the mineral fields of the Eastern Goldfields by the prospectors who followed his track much later. His track and wells allowed for the prospectors to remain in the area and to retreat to these water points in order to survive. It allowed for the steady stream of discoveries that led to the establishment of the Eastern Goldfields and the many urban areas such as Kalgoorlie-Boulder etc.
Hunts explorations played a critical role in the ultimate discovery of the gold at KalgoorlieBoulder. Rumours of the discovery of gold by convicts within his party also fuelled an expectation of gold being discovered in the Hampton Plains. Indeed, Hunt himself blazed a Kurrajong tree on the very outcrop of the mineralised lode of what was to become a significant gold mine “The White Hope”. The fact makes Hunt the first to recognise mineralisation occurring in the Eastern Goldfields. (Reference: Scott W Wilson “Historic trip to the Hampton Plains Block 48 & 50”)
‘Hunts Track’ with its life giving watering points spaced along its route allowed prospectors and explorers to travel into the heart of the Eastern Goldfields.
CC Hunt made four separate trips into the interior of Western Australia, the area now known as the Eastern Goldfields from 1864 to 1866.
The year 2016 marks the 150th Anniversary of his final expedition.
Henry Maxwell Lefroy was the only non-Aboriginal person who had been in the area earlier than Hunt in 1863. While Lefroy’s visit predates Hunt, Lefroy did not leave the legacy of strategic watering points and a cleared route for others to follow.
Hunts track was instrumental to the survival of those who followed this path. The decade from the discovery of gold in the Yilgarn at Eeunin in 1887 until the arrival of the railway in Kalgoorlie in 1896 marks the period of greatest utilisation of Hunts track and the reliance on its watering points it would be fair to say that lives would have been lost without these wells.
Mr Hunts favourable reports on the pastoral prospects of the Hampton Plains area (an area extending to the eastward from present day Coolgardie) lead to the Hamptons Plains Syndicate (Hampton Land and Railway Syndicate) being formed and the ultimate purchase of various allotments of land from the Government for considerable revenue to the state.
The people of Kalgoorlie-Boulder owe a debt of gratitude to Mr Hunt and his team for the establishment of these watering points and the detailed maps and reports of the conditions of the area that allowed the first prospectors such as Paddy Hannan and Bailey and Ford etc to penetrate into this religion to the ultimate benefit of us all. Mr Hunt made a very significant and positive contribution to the people of Kalgoorlie-Boulder by blazing the track and digging watering points for others to follow. His interaction and engagement with aboriginal people was commendable and uncontentious.
Charles Hunt died at a relatively young age of 35 and is buried in Geraldton at Apex Park in what is believed to be an unmarked grave.
His diaries document many years of service and hardship that affected his health – but greatly benefited this region.
Announced:John Carroll, VC
Thomas Leslie (Jack) Axford enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) from Kalgoorlie. He was awarded the Military Medal during WWI as well as the Victoria Cross for his gallantry and initiative at the battle of Hamel.
Thomas Axford was born on the 18th June 1894, at Carrieton, South Australia. His parents were Walter and Margaret Axford. They moved to Coolgardie, when Thomas was two years old. He received his schooling at the Coolgardie State School. He was employed at the Boulder City Brewery Co. Ltd. At the time of this enlistment, his family lived in Bourke Street Kalgoorlie. He enlisted n Kalgoorlie July 1915, in the AIF.
In March 1916 he joined the 16th Battalion in Egypt, and reached France in June 1916. The Battalion attacked near Pozieres on the 9th august, 1916. Axford was evacuated with shellshoc on the 11th August, but quickly re-joined his unit. In august 1917, at Gapaard Farm, Belgium he suffered a shrapnel wound to his knee, but after treatment in England, returned to his unit in January 1918.
The 16th Battalion were part of the 4th Brigade, which in April and May, 1918, stopped a German offensive in Hebuterne, France, after which Axford was awarded the Military Medal.
At the battle of Hamel, on 4th July, 1918, Axford was credited with killing ten enemy soldiers, and capturing six. Axford’s gallantry and initiative in the battle won him the Victorian Cross. Of his actions he later commented “I must have been mad”.
He was promoted to Corporal on n 14th July, 1918.
His Victorian Cross was gazetted n 17th August,, 1918, just nine days before his father died in Kalgoorlie.
He returned to Australia on December 1918, and was discharged for the army on 6th February, 1919, and returned to Kalgoorlie.
He married Lily foster on 27th November, 1926, in Perth. They had two sons and three daughters.
In June 1941 he was mobilised n the Militia, and posted to District records Office, Perth.
He was promoted Sergeant in 1943, and discharged in April, 1947.
He attended the Victorian Cross Centenary Celebrations in London in 1956.
Axford died while returning to Australia, from a reunion of the Victorian Cross and George Cross Association, held in London in 1883.
He died 11th October, 1983, and was buried with Military Honours at Karrakatta Cemetery, Perth. His wife predeceased him by three months. Recognitions
- The Military Cross
- The Victoria Cross
- A ward at Repatriation General Hospital, Hollywood, was named in his honour
- AXFORD PARK in Mt. Hawthorn, is named in recognition of the Thomas Axford, as he had lived in Mt Hawthorn
- He was also to be recognised with a memorial Plaque at Kirup, on the South Western Highway, W.A., as a part of a Commemorations Way, that was to be established in 2016
John Carroll, a prominent member of the local football club, enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) from the Goldfields. He was awarded the Victoria Cross for his fearlessness and courage during the battle of Messines Ridge during WWI.
John Carroll was born on 16th August, 1891, at Brisbane, Queensland.
His parents were John and Catherine Carroll, both Irish born.
When John was two years old, his family moved to Donnybrook, W.A. and then to Yarloop. Then in about 1905, the family settled in Kurrawang. His father and John both worked for the Goldfields Firewood Supply Co. John was a good athlete and a prominent member of the local football club.
He enlisted in the AIF on the 27th April, 1916 (25 years old).
Carroll embarked for England, in the August, with reinforcements for the 44th Battalion. On 14th November, he was transferred to the 33rd Battalion. He served on the line at Armentieres, France, until April, 117, when his unit moved into position for the Messines Offensive. In the battle at Messines Ridge, on 7th June, he rushed an enemy trench, bayonetting four men, and rescued a comrade who was in difficulties. Later in the advance he attached a machine gun crew, killing three men and capturing the gun. In spite of heavy shelling and machine gun fire, he rescued two of his mates who had been buried buy a shell explosion. His battalion was in the line of fire for ninety six hours and Carroll ‘displayed most wonderful courage and fearlessness’ throughout. He was awarded the Victorian Cross and in September rooted to Lance Corporal. He was severely wounded in the second battle f Passchendaele, on 12th October, and did not re-join his unit until June, 1918. In July he was transferred to AIF headquarters in London, and returned to Australia in August.
Carroll resumed work as a guard on the Kurrawang line, after demobilisation.
He marries Mary Brown on 23rd April, 1923. They had no children.
In the mid 1920’s he moved to the Yarloop district. While working as a railway truck examiner at Hoffman’s Mill, in November, 1927, he slipped boarding a train during shunting operations, and his right foot was crushed, and had to be amputated. He continued working for the railway for many years.
In 1956 he went to London, for the Victorian Cross Centenary Celebrations.
He retired to the Perth suburb n Bedford Park.
He died on 4th October, 1971, in the Repatriation General Hospital, Hollywood, W.A. and was buried at Karrakatta cemetery, with full military honours. His wife predeceased him.
He had a happy go lucky nature, and was known by his AIF comrades as ’the wild Irishman’. He was also known as’ Referendum Carroll’, because he rarely said anything but yes or no.
Two of his brothers also served in the AIF. Recognition
- The Victorian Cross
- A ward at Repatriation General Hospital, Hollywood, was named in his honour
- A Street in the Canberra suburb of Hughes, also carries his name
- A plaque in his memory was to be placed on the South West highway, near Boyanup, as part of the Commemoration Way, that was to be established in 2016
Announced: 2018Dr Roy Woodall, AO
Eileen Joyce, a miner’s daughter from Boulder became one of the century’s most famous pianists. Her debut at a Proms Concert in London paved the way to a glittering international career which saw her feature on the soundtrack of a number of major films and the publication of a children’s book based on her early life.
Joyce, Eileen Alannah (1908–1991) by Ava Hubble
The Australian pianist Eileen Joyce, who died in England on March 25, rose from povertystricken obscurity to become one of this century's most famous concert stars.
She was one of the four children of Irish immigrants, Joseph and Alice Joyce, and she was born in a tent at Zeehan, Tasmania, in 1912 . She spent most of her childhood in Boulder, Western Australia, where her father worked as a miner.
The family lived opposite a miners' saloon run by a relative and it was there that Eileen first began experimenting at the keyboard, tinkering on a battered old piano in the bar. Her love of music was encouraged by nuns at the local convent school and when she was about 10 they recommended that she be sent to develop her talents at a larger convent in Perth.
She was never to forget her father's embarrassment when he was forced to admit that he could neither read nor write when enrolling her at the city school.
When Percy Grainger was invited to the convent to hear her play, he pronounced her "the most transcendentally gifted child" he had ever met.
Another visitor, the touring German pianist Wilhelm Backhaus, insisted that she be sent to further her studies in Leipzig. The miners of Boulder passed the hat around to help her parents pay her fare and expenses.
Years later, during an interview, she recalled her long, lonely sea voyage to Europe, and her arrival in Leipzig in the 1920s, "a homesick waif and stray without warm knickers". The reception party, she said, was disappointed to find she was not an Aborigine.
But she also recalled the magnificent musical education she received in Leipzig, where her tutors included "the emperor" of pianists, Artur Schnabel.
From Leipzig she went to London. She was then about 20 and not only an exceptionally gifted young musician, but an extremely beautiful, red-haired young woman. Throughout her career she was to be admired almost as much for her beauty as her performances.
She made her London debut at a Proms Concert conducted by Henry Wood. Shortly after, the resourceful young pianist made a recording in London, at her own expense, and sent copies to all the leading conductors of the day. Offers of engagements with top orchestras followed.
In 1936 she made her first ABC tour of Australia. During that visit her proud father asked her to play his favourite Irish air, Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms. By then she knew dozens of concertos and sonatas by heart, but she had to admit she did not know the score of her father's favourite song.
"Then all your schooling's been wasted," he furiously complained at a reception in her honour. She quickly learned the piece to please him.
Although she left Australia in her early teens and never returned to make her home here, she always made a point of expressing her pride in Australia and its people overseas and she never attempted to gloss over her own humble beginnings.
Perhaps that is why she was regarded with such affection by her Australian contemporaries.
She was certainly never a victim of the tall poppy syndrome. In fact, throughout her glittering international career Australia constantly held her up as "a magnificent ambassadress" and a fine example to young Australians.
Following her return to London after her 1936 ABC tour she married an Englishman, Douglas Legh Barratt, and gave birth to their son, John.
But her first husband was killed while on active service during World War II; in 1945 she married again, this time to the immensely wealthy British film magnate Christopher Mann.
The same year she was featured playing on the sound track of two major British films, The Seventh Veil, starring Ann Todd, and the classic, Brief Encounter, directed by David Lean.
A children's book about her early life was published in 1949 by the English writer Clare Hoskyns-Abahall, who described the miners of "Boulder City" as "cowboys" in sombreros and chaps and reported that Eileen had often roamed in the hills of "West Australia" leading her pet kangaroo Twink by a chain attached to his "beautifully studded collar".
But although the book provoked plenty of guffaws in Australia, it inspired the extremely popular 1951 film, Wherever She Goes, which consolidated Joyce's reputation as a first-rate ambassador.
It starred Suzanne Parrett as the young Eileen, and the famous pianist appeared as her herself, the grown-up star, in the final reel.
In addition to constant reports in the Australian media about her triumphs at Carnegie Hall and other famous concert venues, there were lavishly illustrated magazine articles about her increasingly glamorous lifestyle.
But even accounts of her Mayfair apartment, her seven grand pianos, her country home, Chartwell Farm ("right next door to Sir Winston Churchill's Chartwell Manor") and her concert gowns designed by the leading couturiers of the day failed to provoke widespread envy or acid media comment.
Australia always seemed of the opinion that the daughter of the battling Boulder miner had earned her place in the sun.
She ended her career in Aberdeen in 1960 by closing the lid of the piano after a recital and announcing that she was in pain from muscular problems in her shoulders and "utterly exhausted" after a lifetime of extensive touring.
There was talk of a comeback following her brief, dazzling guest appearance at a charity concert in London in 1967, but she thought better of it.
In 1971 she received an honorary doctorate of music from Cambridge University and in 1979 a doctorate from the University of Western Australia. In 1981 she was created a Companion of the Order of St. Michael and St. George.
The same year she visited Australia to adjudicate at the Sydney International Piano Competition and to attend the official opening of the Eileen Joyce Studio at the University of Western Australia.
She donated the $110,000 cost of the studio as a tribute to her parents, but during that trip she confessed that she had virtually lost touch with her siblings over the years.
She also attended the 1985 Sydney International Piano Competition and made her last trip home to Australia in 1989 when she attended an ABC concert in her honour at Sydney Town Hall.
Following the death of her husband, Christopher Mann, in 1983, she made her home at White Hart Lodge, a converted 14th-century monastery in Limpsfield, Surrey.
It was there that she suffered a fall on March 24. She died the following day in hospital. She had been in poor health for several years and friends report that she was particularly distressed by the increasing loss of her short-term memory. "Mummy's going dottie", she frequently complained during her last trip to Australia.
Her funeral was held yesterday in Limpsfield. She is survived by her son, John, her daughter-in-law, Rebecca and her grandson, Alexander.
A studio at the Sydney Symphony Orchestra's new headquarters at Ultimo is to be dedicated to her memory.
Announced: 2018Patricia Ann Leighton
Roy Woodall led the Kalgoorlie-based Western Mining Corp exploration division that found nickel at Kambalda. His technical and professional leadership led to the discovery of the massive Olympic Dam copper-uranium deposit in South Australia.
Dr Roy Woodall was born in Perth, Western Australia on 3 November 1930.
After completing his studies in Geology at the University of Western Australia and the University of California, Roy Woodall worked for Western Mining Corporation in Kalgoorlie, first as a Geologist and later as Chief Geologist and Exploration Manager. Throughout his time with WMC, he provided outstanding technical and professional leadership which gave rise to a number of significant discoveries. These included the first commercial discovery of nickel sulphides in Australia, a discovery that led to establishment of the Kambalda Nickel Operations, and the discovery of one of the most significant copper-uranium deposits at Olympic Dam, South Australia in 1975.
During his career, Roy Woodall has been actively involved in many professional and technical societies and has contributed extensively to scientific and academic discourse in mining as well as to national research and policy committees. His contribution to the mining and resources industry has been recognised through numerous awards including being made an Officer of Australia in the 1981 National Honours List.
Roy’s extensive work history and achievements include: Geologist, Western Mining Corporation 1953-61, Assistant Chief Geologist 1962-67, Chief Geologist 1967-68, Exploration Manager 1968-78, Director 1978-. Fellow Australian Academy of Technological Sciences 1977; William Smith Medal, Geological Society of Australia 1983; Mawson Medal, Australian Academy of Science 1984; Mueller Medal, Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science 1985; Institute Medal, Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy 1985; Silver Medal, Society of Economic Geologists 1986; Fellow, Australian Academy of Science 1988; William Lawrence Saunders Gold Medal, American Institute of Mining Engineers 1988; Haddon Forrester King Medal, Australian Academy of Science 1993; Clunies Ross National Science and Technology Award 1993; Wark Lecturer, Australian Academy of Science 1996.
He is credited with leading teams to the discovery of the world-class Kambalda Nickel Field, the Perseverance Nickel deposit, the My Keith and Rocky’s Reward deposits. The Rocky’s Reward nickel sulphide deposit is located in the Agnew-Wiluna greenstone belt, about 2 km north of the Perseverance (Agnew) nickel mine. These nickel deposit discoveries have had significant impact on the longevity of the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder due to the region being less reliant on gold alone.
Mr. Woodall is a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, the Geophysical Association of Australia, and the Royal Society of Western Australia. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences. His many honors include Officer of the Order of Australia. A.O. the Mawson Medal of the Australian Academy of Science, the AusIMM Institute Medal, and the Silver Medal of the Society of Economics Geologists. The American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers (AIME) William Lawrence Saunders Gold Medal in 1988.
Recognised for his significant contribution to technological and scientific advancement within mining exploration and for his extraordinary and professional leadership.
Announced:Mrs Ester Roadnight, OAM
First female President of the Kalgoorlie-Boulder Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Highly regarded in the Goldfields business community and amongst community organisations. Citizen of the year in 2013 and former Councillor of the Shire of Boulder.
Pat has been a resident of the Goldfields since the early 1970s.
In that time, she has contributed massively to the business culture in Kalgoorlie-Boulder. As well as being a registered tax agent and company auditor, she has principled her own successful accounting practice for over 40 years. Pat is well regarded by her employees, a couple of which have been with her for twenty plus years.
In the ‘70s and ‘80s Pat was directly involved with running the Kalgoorlie-Boulder Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. of which she became the first female president (1991-1993). In 1994, Pat was awarded Life Membership to the Chamber and to this day is the only female Life Member.
During the 7 years, Pat was a Councillor with the Shire of Boulder she made it to the finals of the Jaycees Young Achiever Award. She also represented Council on the Board of the Eastern Goldfields Technical College Advisory Committee.
Although Pat prefers to be a quiet achiever, she has been recognised on a number of occasions. Some of which are:
- City of Kalgoorlie Boulder Citizen of the Year 2013
- Telstra Business Woman of the Year finalist in 1998
- Named one of the 100 Women of the Goldfields.
In her spare time, Pat likes to crochet rugs to donate to fundraising initiatives or aged care facilities.
Announced: TBCSir Richard Moore, OBE
Announced: 2019Sir John Kirwan
Announced: 2019Dr Keith (Barney) McCallum