BLACK HILL, SOUTH AUSTRALIA

THE MID MURRAY LANDS - BLACK HILL, SOUTH AUSTRALIA - THE TRANQUILITY OF THE AUSTRALIAN OUTBACK.



THE MID MURRAY LANDS.




THE TRANQUILITY OF THE AUSTRALIAN OUTBACK IS A WELL KNOWN FACT AND NOWHERE CAN IT BE MORE PRONOUNCED THAN IN THE MID MURRAY-LANDS.

THE REGION IS WELCOMING AND UNCOMPLICATED TO THE INDEPENDENT TRAVELLER WITH ITS WIDE RANGE OF UNIQUE NATURAL FEATURES AND SERVICES.

ONCE YOU ARE PLACED IN THIS CENTRAL REGION OF PEACE AND FREEDOM WITH NATURE IT'S HARD TO IMAGINE THAT ADELAIDE AND THE NORTHERN SUBURBS IS ONLY ONE HOUR DISTANT, OR THAT MAINSTREAM TOURISM CAN BE ACCESSED IN ALL DIRECTIONS WITH A VERY SHORT TIME.

THE REGION IS COMMONLY KNOWN AS THE MURRAY PLAINS AND HAS THREE DISTINCT PHASES OF HUMAN OCCUPATION, BEING; THE ABORIGINAL NATIVE, BRITISH PASTORALISTS 1840'S AND GERMANIC CLOSE SETTLEMENT 1870'S TO DATE.

ALTHOUGH THIS IS AN ANCIENT LAND ITS PRESENT SHALLOW SOIL AND FLORA KNOWN AS MALLEE IS ONLY A RELATIVELY RECENT DEVELOPMENT FROM THE PLEISTOCENE PERIOD OF THE LAST 10,000 YEARS FOLLOWING THE RECESSION OF SEA LEVELS. CALCAREOUS FOSSILS ARE DISCERNIBLE THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE REGION.


ABORIGINAL PEOPLE




MOST OF THIS REGION WAS THE PROVINCE OF THE NGAIAWANG TRIBE WHO NUMBERED APPROXIMATELY 1200 PRIOR TO THE ARRIVAL OF THE EUROPEANS IN THE 1830'S.

NATURAL LAND FORMS DESIGNATED BOUNDARIES BETWEEN NEIGHBOURING TRIBES SUCH AS THE NGANGURUKU SOUTH OF THE BEAUTIFUL MARNE VALLEY AND THE PERAMANGK AND NGADJURI WEST AND NORTHWEST ALONG THE BAROSSA RANGES. TRIBAL OCCUPATION OF THE REGION IS BELIEVED TO EXCEED 27,000 YEARS WITH THE NGAIAWANG BEING THE LAST WHO REPLACED AN EARLIER TRIBE OF THE SO CALLED TARTANGA 7,000 YEARS AGO.


BLACK HILL TOWNSHIIP


The BLACK HILL township is situated some 110 kms north east of Adelaide, nestled in a valley on the River Marne, named after a sister river in France. Black Hill which was named FRIEDENSTHAL (Valley of Peace) prior to World War 1 was first owned as a station by Thomas R Reynolds. In 1891, this land was subdivided and purchased by families, many of whom still have descendants living at Black Hill today. The name Black Hill was derived from the native pines on the granite hill, as these trees together with the black granite accentuated the hills for many miles. Very few places in South Australia can match the superb spread of eucalypltus along the Marne Valley. BLACK HILL was first settled in 1890.


THE BLACK HILL ROCKS


500 Feet above sea level. Estimated Granite was formed 500 million years ago. Granite is uniform in texture, rich black in colour. There are 2 commercial quarries. The first one started in 1947. The second in 1968. Weight 3.5 Tonne per cubic metre. Sold to all parts of Australia, New Zealand, Japan and America. Granite has been featured in the former building of John Martins and David Jones (Adelaide). The new Parliament House and the Library both in Canberra. Sienna Brown granite used as cobblestones in the fore - court of the Sydney Opera House. Up to 20 people are employed at the rocks.


SHELL HILL - AN ANCIENT, UNIQUE PIECE OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA.



SHELL HILL IS OVER 5 MILLION YEARS OLD. So named because of the deposit of oyster shells- some places were up to 20 feet thick. Formerly part of a shallow sea occupying the Murray Basin. Due to storms and slow sinking of basin the oysters would die and would be covered with another layer building up over thousands of years. The South Australian Museum inspected the hill in the early 1970's, activities such as the use by farmers of the shell in conjuction with super phosphates, and the use by councils for road building, have been stopped. THE HILL IS UNIQUE TO SOUTH AUSTRALIA AND IS NOW A RESERVE. The crushing plant in the gully near by was built in 1930. Driven by a large kerosine engine, turning oyster shells into a fine powder - used as a Fertiliser. The late Sir Thomas Playford (a former State Premier of South Australia) used a quantity for his orchards in the Adelaide Hills. The plant was closed during World War 2 and re - opened in 1942 and finally closed in 1946. My late father (Len Batten) worked there during the war years.



Pictured above is the Super Mine at Black Hill in full operation. This photo was talken in 1944 prior to the plant closing down.


LUTHERAN CHURCH



THE FIRST CONGREGATION WAS FORMED IN 1891 - IN A PUG HOUSE BEHIND THE OLD BLACK HILL STORE. THE PRESENT CHURCH WAS DEDICATED ON THE 23RD OCTOBER 1898 AND FINALLY CLOSED IN DECEMBER 2001.

After discussion at a congregational meeting held on the 18th November 2001, members voted to close the Zion Lutheran Church, Black Hill at the end of the year.
Due to lack of numbers the 103 year old church which has served the community so well, will close but the building will not be sold until the existing committee decide that it is necessary, for various reasons.
Worship services began in Black Hill in 1891 and were held in homes, especially the pug and pine home of Elder Mr Johannes Pannach.
Visiting Pastors and reading services were the format until Dr W Zschech was called as a parish Pastor in 1907.
The present church building was dedicated by Pastors W Zschech and Kriewaldt on the 23rd October 1898.
Pastors who followed Pastor Zschech are Pastor Westerman, Pastor T H W Goessling, Pastor M Mueller, Pastor C Temme, Pastor H Noack, Pastor G Ruwoldt, Pastor L Rosenberg, Pastor F Rasenberger, Pastor D Koehne and Pastor H Ludwig.
Mr Albert Blackwell has served the congregation for 37 years as organist.
A final service will be held in the Church on the 30th December 2001 at 10 a.m.
A pooled community lunch will follow in the Black Hill hall. All past and present members and friends are welcome to attend this final thanksgiving service.


Pictured above Pastor E Kriewaldt who dedicated the Black Hill Zion Lutheran Church on the 23rd October 1898. Pastor Kriewaldt came out to Australia from the USA in 1895 as a newly married and ordained Pastor. His first parish was Lobethal where his four sons were born. The Kriewaldt's later moved to the Tarrington Parish (Hochkirk) near Hamilton in Victoria where Pastor Kriewaldt died of tetanus aged 46 years in 1914. Mrs Kriewaldt and her 5 boys returned to the States and stayed for about 10 years and then returned to Australia.


THE BLACK HILL HALL.




BUILT OF IRON AND TIMBER IN 1912. THE FOUNDATION IS OF GUM LOGS - APPROX 2 FEET HIGH. THE BUILDING COST ONE HUNDRED AND FOURTY TWO POUNDS. SCHOOL WAS HELD IN THE HALL FROM 1919-1930. IN 1946 - 32 VOLT ELECTRIC LIGHT WAS INSTALLED - THE POWER LINE WAS CONNECTED FROM AN ELECTRIC LIGHT PLANT AT THE SHOP NEAR BY. ETSA POWER WAS CONNECTED TO BLACK HILL IN 1962.


TELEPHONE HISTORY AT BLACK HILL


THE FIRST TELEPHONE WAS CONNECTED IN 1913 - 1914 FROM CAMBRAI.

IN JULY 1978 THE BLACK HILL TELEPHONE EXCHANGE CLOSED AND THE SERVICE WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE PRESENT AUTOMATIC EXCHANGE AT WALKER FLAT.


THE BLACK HILL SCHOOL.




THE FIRST SCHOOL WAS OPENED IN 1894. IN A PUG AND PINE SHED BEHIND THE BLACK HILL STORE. IT WAS TRANSFERRED TO THE HALL IN 1919. A NEW SCHOOL WAS BUILT IN 1930 AND CLOSED IN 1945. THE SCHOOL BUILDING WAS LATER PURCHASED BY THE CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH AND IS NOW PRIVATELY OWNED AS A DWELLING.

STUDENTS - ENROLLMENT WAS UP TO 36.

OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST FROM BLACK HILL.



RAINFALL

The average Rainfall is 10 inches or 250 mls.

MR EISENHAGEN

Mr Eisenhagen was the first person to be buried in Black Hill.

He died by chocking on a piece of meat sometime near the turn of the century.

OLD CEMETERY.


The first buriel took place in 1900.

NEW CEMETERY

The first buriel took place in 1912.


THE SWING BRIDGE





The Swing Bridge crossing the River marne was built in 1912.

The New bridge was replaced in 1988.


CHRISTIAN RESERVE


AN AREA KNOWN AS GERHARDY'S, WHICH WAS USED AS A VENUE FOR PICNICS WAS CHANGED TO 'CHRISTIAN RESERVE' IN 1971 WHEN THE AREA OR PARK WAS DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY OF COUNCILLOR JOHN S CHRISTIAN 1934 - 1970, FOR HIS UNTIRING EFFORTS THROUGH THE MURRAY VALLEY DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE, TO PROMOTE BALANCED DEVELOPMENT THROUGHOUT THE MURRAY VALLEY.

MR CHRISTIAN DIED IN A LIGHT AIRCRAFT ACCIDENT. HIS LATE FATHER, WHO HELD PROPERTY IN THE DISTRICT, MR JOHN CHRISTIAN WAS MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE IN THE FORMER LIBERAL PLAYFORD GOVERNMENT. HE DIED FIGHTING A BUSHFIRE ON HIS PROPERTY.


CAMBRAI


CAMBRAI - PREVIOUSLY CALLED RHINE VILLA - RIVER RHINE - NAME CHANGED DURING THE WAR YEARS TO THE RIVER MARNE AFTER A SISTER RIVER IN FRANCE.


MY GRANDPARENTS - HENRY AND SARAH BATTEN.



My Grandparents pictured above moved down from Oakbank in 1884. He was 22 years of age and lived orginally at Walker Flat. My Grandmother moved down in 1894 at the age of 15 years.


THE BLACK HILL HOMESTEAD - HOUSE BUILT IN 1890. ONE OF THE OLDEST HOMES STILL STANDING IN THE DISTRICT.


Area of this property is just over 300 Acres or 121.50 Hectares and consists of approx. 100 acres of natural mallee scrub and 200 acres of arable farming land.


HISTORY OF PROPERTY



1) PRIOR TO 1890 THE PROPERTY WAS OWNED AS A STATION BY THOMAS R REYNOLDS.

2) 23RD SEPTEMBER 1890 - ERNST FRIEDRICH TRAUGOTT JAENSCH (BORN ON 18-10-1859) MARRIED ALBERTINA MARTHA LEMKE (BORN ON 01-08-1864) ON THE 15TH FEBRUARY 1889. SHE WAS A SANDLETON FARMER'S DAUGHTER. AT THE TIME OF HIS MARRIAGE ERNST JAENSCH FARMED AT STONEFIELD. HE SUBSEQUENTLY PURCHASED THIS PROPERTY. HE TOOK THE VERY FIRST MAIL RUN FROM BLACK HILL TO PALMER.

3) 00/00/1907 - WILLIAM JOHN LANG.

4) 00/007/1914 - JOHANN WILHELM PURSCHE.

5) 00/00/1929 - HEINRICH GUSTAV DONHARDT.

6) 13/01/1938 : HENRY AND SARAH BATTEN.

7) 07/07/1943 : SARAH REBECCA BATTEN (HENRY DIED) (MY GRANDMOTHER BEQUEATHED THE PROPERTY TO HER DAUGHTER, MY AUNTY MAY)

8) 20/09/1968 : CLARISSA MABEL IRIS HUNTER (SARAH DIED) CLARISSA WAS MY AUNTY. SARAH AND HENRY MY GRANDPARENTS.

9) 14/12/1977 : JAMES CLIFFORD GEORGE BATTEN (MY UNCLE WHO PURCHASED PROPERTY FROM AUNTY MAY).

10) 19/09/1988 : STANLEY LENNARD BASIL BATTEN (UNCLE DIED AND BEQUEATHED PROPERTY TO ME)

11) 18/09/1989 : STANLEY LENNARD BASIL BATTEN AND ETHEL MAY BATTEN (AT UNCLE'S WISH PRIOR TO HIS DEATH ASKED THAT IT BE TRANSFERRED INTO JOINT NAMES)


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