Black Hill Flat

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Black Hill Flat is the area below the southern slopes of Black Hill.

Contents

History

Pre-contact

Pre-gold-rush

According to Weston Bate:

By 1840 all the grassy plain around Ballarat had been occupied... The cousins Archibald and William Yuille sat astride the Yarrowee River and possessed the beautiful basin beneath Black Hill...[1]

Gold rush

Gold mining at Black Hill Flat commenced within two months of the discovery of gold at Ballarat. According to Bate, "throughout October [1851] most of the diggers were at Golden Point, but gradually as water became scarcer and the claims poorer there was a movement to new diggings... Before the end of October gold was also discovered in the middle of Black Hill Flat, in a gravelly patch where the famous Gravel Pits lead was later discovered." [1]

Withers reports on a 'new chum digger of 1852' who "dug shallow holes in the Black Hill Flat, but got "the colour" only, and early in December the rush to Creswick broke out and [they] went there."[2]

Perhaps the new chum should have persisted. According to Bate, in 1853:

New areas of shallow sinking were discovered, the first of which was at Black Hill Flat in January. At depths of up to twelve feet there was two feet of rich gravel on a pipeclay bottom, and many shallow patches where ‘paddocking’ (washing everything from an area) was possible.

According to Finlay and Douglas:

The Ballarat East goldfield was famous for the structures known as "indicators". These are essentially thin bands of material within beds of slate. The miners gave names such as the Indicator Slate and the Four Foot Slates to these slate beds . Nuggets of coarse gold are commonly developed in places where indicators are crossed by flat quartz veins or "makes". Indicators were recognised to persist over lengths of up to six kilometres. The first person credited with making the connection between rich gold shoots and indicators was Morgan Llewellyn from evidence at Black Hill Flat in 1871. In the same year, 13 year old Ted Tinworth also recognised this association in his father's mine at Prince Regent Gully.[3]

An advertisement in the Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer includes reference to an eating house at Black Hill Flat:

MR. RALPH'S CONVEYANCE leaves Mr GEORGE JEWELL'S Every Morning at SIX o'clock, for BALLARAT, and MR BROOKS-BANK's Eating House, Black Hill Flat, for GEELONG, Each Morning, at Six, Sunday excepted. Fares-£3 0s. 04.[4]
A LUCKY HAUL.— On Wednesday afternoon three old Ballarat miners, who had been trying their luck for the last nine months in the Ararat district, returned here almost penniless and quite chop- fallen. Yesterday morning, having only a sixpence apiece to begin the day with, they started work at some shallow old ground in the Black Hill Flat, and strange to say, about three o'clock in the afternoon, they stumbled on a splendid nugget of 125 ounces, much to their astonishment and delight. The nugget, which was purchased by Messrs. Bradshaw and Salmon, is of a solid egg shape, and beautifully ribbed with quartz. It contains about 110 ounces of pure gold ; thus giving to the three lucky fellows, for a few hours work, nearly £150 apiece. — Star.[5]
Mr Surveyor Cowan reported with respect to the application by the Ballarat Quartz Crushing Company for five acres in the Black Hill Flat, that portions only of the ground were auriferous. A plan accompanied the report. Mr Penrose appeared in person, and Mr Walsh in support of the application.[6]

Industry

Chronology

1856

December 9 Application for a surfacing grant on the Black Hill Flat, 283 x 283 feet, was made by George Foggart and party. Recommended.[7]

1857

April 14 Simon Peterson takes Charles Wood to court to obtain a share of a nugget found by Wood. Several people testify, including George Purchas, John Batz, and Eliza Peterson. It appears from the court report that Wood (or someone) was working a claim on Black Hill Flat.[8]

August 19 Cr. Clendinning drew the attention of the Council to the fact, that the overflow from a certain water-race in connection with works now in hand by the Central Road Board, was causing great inconvenience to the residents on a portion of the Black Hill Road [now Humffray Street].[9]

November 14 A LUCKY HAUL. — On Wednesday after- noon three old Ballarat miners, who had been trying their luck for the last nine months in the Ararat district, returned here almost penniless and quite chopfallen. Yesterday morning, having only a sixpence apiece to begin the day with, they started work at some shallow old ground in the Black Hill Flat, and strange to say, about three o'clock in the afternoon they stumbled on a splendid nugget of 125 oz., much to their astonishment and delight. The nugget, which was purchased by Messrs Bradshaw and Salmon, is of a solid egg shape, and beautifully ribbed with quartz. It contains about 110 oz. of pure gold; thus giving to the three lucky fellows for a few hours work, nearly £150 apiece.[10]

December 2 Cox and party, surface grant, Black Hill Flat. This hearing led to a decision to rescind an earlier ruling that all parties to a mining application must appear at the hearing.[11]

December 16 Wood and party, surface grant, Black Hill Flat. No appearance.[12]

December 18 Cope and party, surface grant near Union Hotel, Black Hill Flat. No appearance.[13]

December 23 Salmon and party of seventeen for four acres of old ground on the Black Hill Flat, to be worked by machinery, the same as the White Flat Company's grant. This pretty little grand extension request caused the court to stick awhile, and finally the applicants were told they would have the grant provided they produced a satisfactory prospectus of management before the court this day (Wednesday).[14]

December 25 The clerk read prospectus of the company seeking a grant of four acres on the Black Hill Flat, showing that there were to be eighteen working shares, and four sleeping shares for machinery to wit steam machinery of ten-horse power. The creek to be banked up, but otherwise undisturbed. Granted on condition that the terms of the prospectus be kept.[15]

1858

January 6 The sites recommended in the report were–For a cattle market, 16 acres, between the Melbourne road and the Black Hill, and having the proposed railway line running through its centre.[16]

January 19 Cr Belford moved-" That the District Surveyor be applied to for the line of the Bakery Hill and Black Hill roads. Cr M'Cleverty seconded the motion. Carried.[17]

February 2 To Bricklayers. TENDERS wanted for building three chimneys. For particulars apply to Hancock & Hunt, next Mr Bull's store, Black Hill road.[18]

May 11 SLY GROG SELLING.- Robert Harris was charged with allowing two glasses of spirituous liquors to be sold on his premises. The principal informer, the notorious Elisha Bennett, deposed to having "stuck up" the defendant's store, near the Red Bull Hotel on the Black Hill Flat, in company with his equally well known companion Alexander. They went under the pretence of buying sugar, and so induced the unsuspecting Mr Harris to sell the liquor. Some laughter was occasioned by the first informer's account of his conversation with Mrs Harris, the lady expressing great anxiety about the man Bennett, "who was going about sticking everybody up." Mr Cuthbert subjected the witnesses for the Crown to a hot fire of cross questions, and then produced two witnesses for the defence, who denied that the two informers had ever been at the house at all on the day in question. As the whole of the witnesses were not forthcoming, the case was remanded until Monday, as were three other sly grog selling cases.[19]

June 19 BRICKMAKING BY STEAM.[20]

August 4 WANTED,—A Candle Maker. Apply at the Candle Factory, Black Hill Flat (near Union Hotel). [21]

August 18 TENDERS WANTED for the erection of a puddling machine, (labor and materials) for the Phoenix Company, Black Hill Flat. Plans and specifications to be seen on the ground.[22]

See also

Black Hill Flat Gold Mining Company

Notes

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Bate, Weston. Lucky City: The First Generation at Ballarat 1851-1901 (1978)
  2. Withers, WB, The History of Ballarat from the First Pastoral Settlement to the Present Time, Second Edition, 1887[1]
  3. Finlay, I.S. and Douglas, P.M., 1992, Ballarat 1:100,000 mines and deep leads map - geological report, Geological Survey of Victoria Report 94
  4. "Advertising." Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer (Vic. 1851-1856) 18 Feb 1853, [2](accessed 16/8/2014)
  5. ELYSIAN FLAT—NEW RUSH. (1857, November 20). Bendigo Advertiser (Vic. 1855-1918), p. 2{http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article87977013](accessed 22/8/2014)
  6. LOCAL COURT. (1858, January 1). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. 1855-1864), p. 2[3](accessed 22/8/2014)
  7. LOCAL COURT. (1856, December 9). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 3. [4]
  8. LOCAL COURT. (1857, April 14). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. [5]
  9. MUNICIPAL COUNCIL EAST. (1857, August 19). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. [6]
  10. Local and General News. (1857, November 14). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 3. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045163
  11. Tuesday, 1st December. (1857, December 2). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045443
  12. LOCAL COURT. (1857, December 16). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045650
  13. LOCAL COURT. (1857, December 18). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045690
  14. LOCAL COURT. (1857, December 23). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045775
  15. LOCAL COURT. (1857, December 25). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045811
  16. MUNICIPAL COUNCIL BALLARAT EAST. (1858, January 6). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66045964
  17. MUNICIPAL COUNCIL, BALLARAT EAST. (1858, January 19). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved February 28, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66046164
  18. Advertising (1858, February 2). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 3. Retrieved March 3, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66046353
  19. EASTERN POLICE COURT. (1858, May 11). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved March 3, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66048034
  20. BRICKMAKING BY STEAM. (1858, June 19). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 2. Retrieved April 10, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66048757
  21. Advertising (1858, August 4). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 3. Retrieved April 16, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66049524
  22. Advertising (1858, August 18). The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), p. 3. Retrieved April 16, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article66049753


Further reading

External links


--Neil Huybregts 16:54, 30 August 2013 (EST)

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