Sunday History Photo / Tas

Submitted: Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 09:53
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Ross is an historic town in the Midlands of the state of Tasmania in Australia. On the Macquarie River, Ross is located 78 km south of Launceston and 117 km north of Hobart. The town is listed on the Register of the National Estate and is noted for its historic bridge, original sandstone buildings and convict history, Originally established as a garrison in 1821, it was laid out as a town, but was not proclaimed as such until 1847.

The town of Ross lies in lands that were traditionally owned by Tasmanian Aborigines, specifically the Tyrernotepanner (Stony Creek) Nation. The aboriginal name for the area that now constitutes the Ross township was mackerler.
The first European to explore the district was surveyor Charles Grimes who passed through the area while mapping Tasmania's central area including parts of what later became known as the Macquarie River. On an expedition in 1811, Governor Lachlan Macquarie passed through the area himself and, as he recorded in his journal,
(I named our last Night's Station "Ross", in honor of H. M. Buchanan Esqr. – that being the name of his Seat on Loch-Lomond in Scotland; this part of Argyle Plains on the Right Bank of the Macquarie River being very beautiful and commanding a noble view.)
Later that year, a timber bridge was built over the river and subsequently Ross became an important stopover on road journeys between Launceston and Hobart. It developed as a base for the local garrison and became a centre for trade for the surrounding district.
Ross Post Office opened on 1 June 1832. In 1836 the stone bridge, known as Ross Bridge, was completed. The well-known sandstone bridge was constructed by convict labour in 1836, and is the third oldest bridge still in use in Australia. Commissioned by Lieutenant-Governor Arthur, the bridge was designed by architect John Lee Archer, with the convict work team including two stonemasons,


James Colbeck and Daniel Herbert, the latter being credited with the intricate carvings along both sides of the bridge, Once pardoned, Herbert married and lived in Ross, and is buried there.
Report in the Launceston Examiner, Tasmania, Friday 1st January 1886, on page 2. “On Nov. 23 a new Wesleyan Church was opened at Ross. It is built of freestone, and cost £4241, The opening service took place on 22 November 1885. The church was described as thus:

The Wesleyan Church stands upon an elevated site in Church-street ; it is the first object that meets the eye of the traveller approaching the town by any road. The site was the gift of Mr. Thos. Parramore. The church, which is built upon a rock, is of free-stone taken from the Beaufront Estate. The masonry work, which is very solid, was performed by workmen paid day wages under the supervision of Mr. Will. The roof is slated. The whole of the woodwork, including the internal fittings, was done by Messrs. J. and T. Gunn, of Launceston, and reflects great credit upon that firm, the . On the north side of the church is a beautifully stained window, placed there at a cost of £130 2s. 11d.

This window was given by old students of Horton College, as a memorial of their connection with that institution. A stained window is in course of execution, and will shortly be placed in the east end of the church, in memory of the late Thomas and Frances Margaret Parramore, the gift of their three children. The church will comfortably seat from 230 to 300 persons, and the voice of the preacher can be heard clear and distinct from any part of the building.
By the time of Australian Federation in 1901, the permanent population had grown to 311 and the wider area had become known as a fine wool growing district. At this time Ross had four churches, a post and telegraph office, a savings bank, one hotel, and a town hall and library.

The former Army Orderly Room is a stone Colonial building which was the first army headquarters in Ross. Nearby is the Royal Ordnance Corps Store, which was erected in 1836 and has the corps crest carved above the door. This building now houses the Ross Memorial Library and Recreation Room.
The Council Clerk's cottage, situated on the south-west corner of Church and High Streets is a single storey Georgian building. The western wing of this building incorporates the former police buildings. A jail also stood on this site.
Near the Ross Bridge stands the former military barracks, a single-storey Colonial building which has been recently restored.


The remains of the old female factory, a prison for women between 1847 and 1854, are open to the public. The female factory housed 12,000 female convicts during this period.
The convict site dates back to the 1840s. Usually referred to as the Female Factory, it was one of only a few female convict compounds in Australia. There is one remaining building on the site, the Assistant Superintendent's Quarters, which currently houses a display relating to the site.


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Reply By: Member - Tony H (touring oz) - Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 19:46

Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 19:46
Great scallop pies in Ross.
Thanks for another interesting post Doug
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Reply By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 20:19

Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 20:19
The main crossroads in Ross are amusingly said to represent "Temptation" (Man O'Ross Hotel), "Recreation" (Town Hall), "Salvation" (Catholic Church) and "Damnation" (the former jail, now a private residence).

The stones on the top rails of the bridge are secured by metal bands. To prevent theft of the valuable commodity they were stamped with the government broad arrow.
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Reply By: rumpig - Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 20:29

Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 20:29
Just North outside of town as you drive along the highway you may notice this pictured below in a paddock

This marker in the paddock relates to the fact that it is where the 42 degree South latitude line runs through Tasmania, it's approx 4650 klms South of the equator. The latitude line also runs through New Zeland, Chile and Argentina, but the township of Ross apparently is the only town of any decent size along it's entire length.
The detail in some of the stone work on the Ross Bridge (and many other stone buildings in town also i will add) is quite impressive to check out if you ever find yourself there. I really enjoyed wondering around the town checking out the stone structures that make up much of Ross when we visited it.











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Follow Up By: Life Member-Doug T NSW - Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 15:54

Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 15:54
A Fantastic contribution to this weeks SHP , THANKS .

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Follow Up By: rumpig - Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 17:35

Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 17:35
No worries Doug.... appreciate the effort you put in each week to come up with another subject for us all to read, and this time around I have visited there myself in recent years, and was lucky enough to recall some info you hadn't listed...lol
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Reply By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 18:56

Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 18:56
Doug - can you please do Places write-ups when you feature Australia Places? as you'll see if you open Ross in Places, there is no info. Let me know if you need site admin access.
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Follow Up By: Life Member-Doug T NSW - Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 20:18

Monday, Sep 19, 2016 at 20:18
OK thanks Michelle, I'll look into it, I am also busy preparing songs for my 2 Saturday Radio programs during the week, the 2 programs are 4 hours and 2 hours , plus odd jobs around the farm (who said retirement is boring) but a look into Places won't take all that long, ...by the way I will soon play 3 or 4 4X4 songs for members in the near future , I'll give notice the day before and the link to the station.

Doug

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Reply By: wozzie (WA) - Friday, Sep 23, 2016 at 14:07

Friday, Sep 23, 2016 at 14:07
And.... providing they haven't closed or changed hands and perhaps recipes, they also sell some of the BEST Vanilla slices at the bakery in Ross.

We tried them in 2012, and failed to find any better over 2 years, and 70,000klm of travel around Australia.
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Follow Up By: Member - Rod N (QLD) - Friday, Sep 23, 2016 at 16:42

Friday, Sep 23, 2016 at 16:42
I'll second that. We were lucky enough to get a couple of free ones for being the 'stars' in a Japanese documentary in 2012. We had to 'buy' something in the bakery while they filmed us, so we selected the vanilla slice.
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