Sunday, January 23, 2011

Some notes on Camperdown and its Town Hall

Camperdown Municipality went insolvent to the extent that its Town Hall was sold off by the Sheriff in 1909. The Town Hall itself was (seemingly) in "George Street" according to public notices of that time in the Sydney Morning Herald - but there is no George Street in Camperdown these days. There is one in nearby Erskineville, though. Or maybe 'George St' has been renamed? Other records suggest that the Town Hall was between King and Bishopgate Streets, and that's entirely on the other side of Newtown, towards Parramatta Road - where we actually expect to find Camperdown nowadays. Otherwise I'll just keep looking...

UPDATE: Found it! George Street was (of course!) renamed - it's now Parramatta Road. The Camperdown Town Hall was beside the primary school, corner of Mallet Street and Parramatta Road.

Records of Councils Absorbed by Sydney City Council - City of Sydney
Sydney City Council (known as the Municipal Council of Sydney until 1949) took over the small and struggling Municipality of Camperdown.
Records of Councils Absorbed by Sydney City Council - City of Sydney
The City lost most of the areas it had acquired.
Part of Camperdown (west of about Church Street/Mallett Street north) and part of Newtown (west of King Street) were transferred to the Municipality of Marrickville.
On 9th August, 1803 an area of land was granted to Thomas Rowley. Part of that grant later became the Kingston estate. Australia Street is marked on subdivision maps for the 1860s in the huge area known as North Kingston estate. Part of the street was in the Camperdown Estate. However, there would have been people residing where Australia Street now is before the street existed. A few streets south there was a very large land grant and there were people living in scattered cottages around this area.
The Municipality of Camperdown was formed in 1862, taking in the Parramatta Road end of Australia St. It was dissolved in 1908, at which time the area was absorbed by the City of Sydney. Newtown Council was formed in 1863, taking in the King Street end of Australia St. Newtown Council held their first meeting in 1865, one of the councillors appears to be a property owner (but not occupant) in Australia Street - Conley (or Connelly, who later became chairman). It was abolished in 1949 and the area was also absorbed by the Sydney City Council. In 1968 the area was carved up between Marrickville Council and (South) Sydney Council. In 1988 the area came fully under Marrickville.
Marrickville Council - History of Suburbs
Camperdown was named in 1806 by Governor William Bligh, who was granted an estate there of 97.1 ha (240 acres). Bligh was decorated for his role in the British naval victory against the Dutch at the Battle of Camperdown (Kamperduin) in 1797. Kamperduin, literally the Dunes of Kamp, is the name of a north Holland village, near the North Sea.

Camperdown was a separate municipality from 1862 to 1908.

Camperdown Cemetery, established in 1848, is one of the oldest European burial sites in New South Wales. The first interment was Sir Maurice O"Connell, son in law of Governor Bligh. The vault also contains the remains of his grandson, Richard Murray O'Connell.
Victoria Park, Camperdown - City of Sydney
Victoria Park, Camperdown

Victoria Park is at the junction of City Road and Parramatta Road adjacent to the University of Sydney. Both roads began as walking tracks in the 1790s, leading from Sydney to Botany Bay and Parramatta. This was the site of some of the earliest land grants in the colony in 1789 when 1000 acres was reserved to provide farmlands and pasture to support church, government and school officials. Early names for the area included the Kangaroo Grounds and Parakeet Hill.