Saturday 26 December 2015

Maryland, Bringelly, NSW


773 The Northern Road, Bringelly, NSW. 2556
Lot 1, DP 218779; Lot 29, DP 872135

Maryland House c.1990s (

History and Description

“Maryland” including the homestead, grounds, outbuildings, stone cottage, former winery, stone store and gate keepers cottage. Also known as Nonorrah.

Part of 1815 grant to John Dickson. He named the 1215 hectare (3000 acres) property "Nonorrah". By 1828 it was just one of a number of large pastoral holdings which he began selling in 1833. "Nonorrah" was purchased by his former apprentice, Thomas Barker, then resident at Darlinghurst. He remarried in 1857 and moved to the property after his first wife, Dickson's niece, died. He renamed the property "Maryland". Most of the buildings of interest were built during his occupancy. His son Thomas Charles took over the property after his death in 1875, and extended the planting. After he died in 1940 it was purchased by N A Thompson whose daughters, Annette and Elizabeth. . (State Heritage Inventory)

The main house building was built by Thomas Barker when he moved to the property. Completed in 1859 and connected to a pre-existing house (1840's) still standing. It is believed that an earlier 1820's dwelling was demolished to make way for this building. Apart from minor alterations and rear additions the building has been maintained in original condition. (State Heritage Inventory)

The main building is a large early colonial style house laid out on a rectangular plan. Despite gothic chimneys and classical verandah posts, overall styling is more traditional (Australian Georgian). Stone rubble construction with stuccoed, ashlar finish and stone quoining (now painted). Hipped, galvanised iron roof with sandstone chimneys. Skillion verandah on eastern and northern frontages with return to southern side. (State Heritage Inventory)

Condition and Use

The buildings are still in use and intact.

It is understood that some of the outbuildings are in a state of disrepair. However, this does not alter the significance of the item. (State Heritage Inventory)

Heritage Significance

Maryland is an outstanding complex of early homestead and farm buildings, especially significant for its completeness as a group, its excellent state of preservation, and the intergration of the buildings, garden and magnificant setting. Includes many early buildings in good repair as well as buildings of special architectural interest. The winery and store may be the oldest winery buildings in Australia. Property has been in continuous occupation by only two families for over 130 years. Long associations with the surrounding district.

The Main Building is an important historic grouping, set in magnificant garden and landscape and retaining most original fabric. The outbuildings form a substantial group which are of state significance because they are an important historic grouping and some of the earliest on the buildings on site. They illustrate the diversity of functions associated with early agricultural activity in this area. All are virtually intact. (State Heritage Inventory)

Heritage Listing

Camden LEP I1
State Heritage Inventory - NSW Heritage
National Estate Database - Australian Heritage Commission

Read more 

about Maryland and its farming complex on the State Heritage Inventory Click here

Camden Heritage List Click here

Friday 25 December 2015

Macaria, a Camden heritage icon.


37 John Street, Camden, NSW 2570  Lot 1 DP 216189

Macaria. 37 John Street, Camden. c.1990 (Camden Images/John Kooyman)ca

History and Description

Macaria was built by Henry Thompson, a notable Camden identity, who took up residence in the mid 1840's. He founded the first water-driven mill at the corner of Argyle and Edward Streets and later built brick steam mills which eventually became the Camden Tweed Mills. It was for many years the home of Dr F.W. West and later of other medical doctors. Now it is owned by Camden Council and retained as part of their Civic Centre complex. The stable and barn, a small building of similar style on the southern side of the house, were demolished to allow an entranceway to the new Council building behind.  (NSW Heritage)

Macaria is an excellent example of a Picturesque Tudor-Gothic residence of brick with stone dressings, wooden fretwork on the verandahs, and high brick chimneys and gable windows. Its high pitched gable roof, which was probably once shingled, is now covered with corrugated iron. It has two single panelled timber entrance doors with a highlight window, double hung windows, ornate timber barge-boards, quoining stones and finials and pendants on the gables. (NSW Heritage)

Condition and Use

The building is in good condition.  Macaria retains good integrity and intactness.
Its current use is for the Camden Council Chambers

Heritage Significance

For a house of this scale, Macaria is among the best picturesque Gothic houses in Australia. This, when combined with its importance to Camden, makes it a building of great significance. (National Estate Database) 
The building is part of the John Street group. 
Macaria is a  fine early townhouse of distinctive and interesting architectural quality, associated with an important figure of the town's early years. (NSW Heritage)

Heritage Listing  

Camden LEP No 145

Read more about Macaria on the 

Register of the National Estate Click here
NSW State Heritage Inventory  Click here
Camden Heritage List Click here

Camden Volunteers and the War Workers’ Gazette from the First World War

The cover of the War Workers' Gazette published in Sydney in 1918 as a wartime fundraiser for the War Chest Fund

1918 War Workers' Gazette

Camden volunteers in a variety of organisations were listed in  1918 when a Sydney publisher compiled the War Workers’ Gazette as a fundraiser for the Citizens’ War Chest Patriotic Fund. It was an important publication for the time and its importance has not declined over the years. Publications of this type are rare and despite some shortcomings it is a valuable addition to the historiography of contemporary wartime publications.

The full title of the gazette was The War Workers’ Gazette, A Record of the Organised Civilian War Effort in New South Wales and published by Winn & Co. It records thousands of names of volunteers across New South Wales for a host of wartime voluntary organisations.
It is a great resources for anyone researching war time history, family history or local studies. The lists of names provide a  rare and /invaluable asset to search names and voluntary organisations. There is no other equivalent elsewhere in Australia.

Example of information in War Workers’ Gazette 1918 p.67. There are individual names and organisational descriptions.
For more information on the story of the Gazette, who put it together and its success or not click here

View the War Workers’ Gazette on the National Library Website  Click here