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Online Catalogue last updated 2nd of November 2021


Mountains of Ash A History of Sawmills and Tramways of Warburton and District by Mike McCarthy

Warburton lies alongside the Yarra Rover 66 kilometres north-east of Melbourne. Nestled deep in a valley below towering timbered slopes, Warburton is a popular weekend destination for those attracted by its natural beauty and tranquillity. How ever, the surrounding forests were once important for an entirely different reason. During the period prior to the First World War Warburton was the centre of Victoria's premier sawmilling district.

The exploitation of the nearby forests saw the establishment of 66 major sawmills and many smaller mills in the bush surrounding the town. They were linked to the railway at Warburton, Millgrove and Wesburn through a fascinating system of wooden and steel railed tramways. In total, over 320 kilometres of tramway could be found in the bush in the area. Horses, steam locomotives and rail tractors were employed in hauling the timber along the rails.

The timber tramway has long disappeared as mode of transport in the sawmilling industry. Unfortunately, along with it, much character has also departed. It was the bush workers and their families who gave the industry its character. Once they left their forest settlements only rotting remains were left to mark where vibrant communities once thrived

Contributions from many of these men and women who were industry participants during its heyday provide the authentic basis for this book. Thorough research of official records and newspaper references add to its historic accuracy. Mountains of Ash faithfully records this fascinating bygone era.

Code No. 009702, 312 pages, ISBN 0909340412, $59.95

This item is listed under the following subjects:

Railway   Saw Mills  
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