|28th October – Eden
Our second day in Eden and all is well.
The drive over from Talbingo is very scenic, not to mention hilly…. We came down via Nimmitabel and Bombala where we stopped for an early lunch. Nimmitabel that is…
Nice sites here, very spacious with views of the lake, very nice park we had seen it before but never stopped here.
Yesterday we spent most of the day relaxing, bought F&C at the dwarf (an object to which small ships are berthed) and due to the wind took it back to the van for consumption.
Today the little Grapefruit did cuppla loads of washing while I took Gracie for a swim in the lake; she bought a stick back with her to the van which she then defended if anyone tried to pick it up.
Lunch at the Fisherman’s Club and it was very nice, I had what was basically a roast beef and cheese baguette with chips and a jus dipping sauce. Carol opted for a Chicken schnitzel and was most intrigued to find a fly in her salad………..
Went for a drive out to Boyd’s Tower (which has had some restorative work done since I was last there) and I took some pictures…. Its kind of an interesting folly he built. Built as a light house but wee Ben Boyd was not allowed to use it as a light house as the Government of the Day was very wary about people setting up private “utopias” so it ended up as a lookout. The tower is built from sandstone imported from Pyrmont where a mate of Boyd’s was excavating sandstone from a railway cutting which was used to make the tower. Today the Dulwich Hill tram runs through the same cutting though now modified….
Scotish born Benjamin Boyd was a controversial figure in Australian history. A wealthy London stockbroker he came to Australia in 1842 with grand plans.
In 1840 he had written to Lord John Russell about his plans for "further developing the resource of Australia and its adjacent Islands". To this purpose he set up the Royal Bank of Australia in London in 1839 with a nominal capital of a million pounds and two hundred thousand pounds raised from the sale of debentures. With this he set sail to Australia in his schooner the Wanderer. When the ‘Wanderer’ reached Sydney in July 1842 it followed four steamships crammed with food, wines, plates, furniture, office furniture and whaling and sealing equipment.
He soon became one of the largest landholders in Australia with more than 810,000 hectares in the Monaro and Port Phillip districts and along the Murray River, most of which was used to run sheep. He also had interests in whaling, shipping, export, banking and finance. He was elected to the NSW Legislative Assembly.
He instigated many grandiose schemes but his financial empire was plagued by shipping losses, the financial depression of the 1840s and labour disputes. To solve his labour problems he resorted to 'blackbirding' (importing islanders under virtual slave conditions) and later attempted to bring in indentured labour. Both measures met with stiff opposition from both humanitarians and workers in the colony, who feared for their own working conditions.
Financial mismanagement and the overly ambitious nature of his schemes led to him being declared bankrupt and in 1848 he departed Australia in the Wanderer to try to recoup his fortunes in the Californian goldfields where he again met with disappointment.
After his failure in the goldfields he set sail again, this time to cruise the Pacific. In 1851 he disappeared at Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands when he went ashore to hunt ducks. Despite searches initiated by his creditors his body was never recovered.
Now here is a question for you, what is the link with Eden and Kiandra? No googling….
Ok you, the chap typing what’s the answer? Well the miners heading to Kiandra often started out from Eden and bought supplies here before setting off. Must have been made of strong stuff, can you imagine walking from Eden to Kiandra pushing a barrow with your tools and belongings in it?
The Whale Festival is on in ernest tomorrow, we hope to get up the hill to observe, not sure about the parking situation though…