Gwalia is a ghost town just outside the mining town of Leonora about 24km north of Kalgoorlie. One of the first managers of the mine was Herbert Hoover who went on to become president of the USA. His house can be visited. The mine was started in 1896 and was a very successful mining town but after a series of disaters it closed suddenly in 1963.
Unfortunately for the workers who all lived near the mine they didn't own their houses and on 24 hours notice they were ordered to pack what they could and catch the wating train to Kalgoorlie. An infamous event!
When people departed they left behind many of their possessions and these remain where they were left in the houses such as the ones in the photo. Most of the houses were built by the miners from whatever scrap metal they could find.
You can wander around the town and go into most of the houses and see scraps of life left behind - unmade beds, remains of meals, radios, chairs and tables, an old piano etc. I'll post an interior photo tomorrow.
It is quite an emotional place to visit.
This photograph is copyright. © Ian Fegent 2013. All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of the image in any form is prohibited. You may not, except with my express written permission, copy, reproduce, download, distribute, use on an internet site or exploit the content.
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daddo (20641) 2013-10-09 22:54
Hi Ian. Fascinating story with the usual bent to it- the exploitation of the workers, the vulnerable. One could be forgiven to think this scene was from somewhere in the third world. But then we still have housing like this and worse amongst the Aborigines. Regards. Klaudio.
- Copyright: Ian Fegent (ifege) (9909)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2013-07-26
- Categories: Architecture, Ruins
- Camera: Pentax K20D, Pentax SMC DA* 50-135mm f2.8 ED (IF) SDM
- Exposure: f/11, 1/90 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Travelogue: Road trip to Western Australia
- Date Submitted: 2013-10-09 22:23