is a town located in the south-west of Western Australia
Western Australia is a state of Australia, occupying the entire western third of the Australian continent. It is bounded by the Indian Ocean to the north and west, the Great Australian Bight and Indian Ocean to the south, the Northern Territory to the north-east and South Australia to the south-east...
, 269 kilometres (167.1 mi) south-southeast of Perth
Perth is the capital and largest city of the Australian state of Western Australia and the fourth most populous city in Australia. The Perth metropolitan area has an estimated population of almost 1,700,000....
and 31 kilometres (19 mi) northeast of Bridgetown
-Notable people:*Emily Barker, singer-songwriter*Jon Doust, author and comedian*Robyn McSweeney, politician*Tom O'Dwyer, cricketer*David Reid, politician*Deborah Robertson, novelist and poet-External links:* * * * * * * *...
The name Boyup
is derived from the name of a nearby pool "Booyup", an Aboriginal
Indigenous Australians are the original inhabitants of the Australian continent and nearby islands. The Aboriginal Indigenous Australians migrated from the Indian continent around 75,000 to 100,000 years ago....
term meaning "place of big stones" (large granite outcrops common in the area) or "place of big smoke" (from burning the many surrounding grass trees).
The town's economy is primarily agricultural.
In about 1839, John Hassell brought sheep and cattle from the eastern states of Australia via Albany
Albany is a port city in the Great Southern region of Western Australia, some 418 km SE of Perth, the state capital. As of 2009, Albany's population was estimated at 33,600, making it the 6th-largest city in the state....
, and acquired a lease of land along what would later become Scotts Brook, south of the current town site. Although he grazed this stock in the area, the leases did not become permanent, and Hassell later moved to Kendenup.
In 1845, Augustus Gregory
Sir Augustus Charles Gregory KCMG. was an English-born Australian explorer. Between 1846 and 1858 he undertook four major expeditions.-Early years:...
followed the Blackwood River
The Blackwood River is a major river and catchment in the South West of Western Australia.The river begins at the junction of Arthur River and Balgarup River near Quelarup and travels in a south westerly direction through the town of Bridgetown then through Nannup until it discharges into the...
from the junction of the Arthur
Arthur River is a small town located in the Wheatbelt region of Western Australia, between Williams and Kojonup on Albany Highway.-History:Arthur River is named after the river that flows through it, a headwater of the Blackwood River...
and Beaufort Rivers downstream for about 170 kilometres (105.6 mi).
He carved his initials and the date into a jarrah tree, approximately 16 kilometres (10 mi) north-east of where the town now lies.
That tree is now dead, but the stump and the markings remain. The stump – now known as the Gregory Tree – has been covered for preservation.
The first permanent settlement in the area was a adj=on 12000 lease, south of the current town site, along what became known as Scotts Brook. This lease was granted to William Scott
[Some sources refer to Scott as "Commander", "Commodore" and/or "Captain". Schorer 1968 uses all three titles, but Erickson 1979, 1988 doesn't mention any title.]
and his wife Mary ( Keane), who arrived in 1854, having travelled from Albany. They named the property Norlup, and in about 1872 built a new house that remains to this day
(albeit with more recent extensions and renovations), and is now listed on the Heritage Council of Western Australia
The Heritage Council of Western Australia is the Government of Western Australia agency created to identify, conserve and promote places of cultural heritage significance in the state.It was created under the Heritage of Western Australia Act...
In 1861 James George Lee Steere, in partnership with Mr J H Monger, took up a adj=on 100000 lease near the Blackwood River. Shortly afterwards, his wife Catherine
[The history page on the shire's web site shows her name as Caroline, but all other references list her as Catherine.]
and their baby son travelled from Bunbury
The port city of Bunbury is the third largest city in Western Australia after the State Capital Perth and Mandurah. It is situated south of Perth's central business district...
to join him.
In 1871 William Forrest
[William was the brother of Sir John Forrest]
Sir John Forrest GCMG was an Australian explorer, the first Premier of Western Australia and a cabinet minister in Australia's first federal parliament....
moved into the area, to a farm called Dwalganup.
By 1882 there were nineteen families in the area. In 1896 land was set aside for a future town and the Upper Blackwood Road Board district (which became the Shire of Boyup Brook in 1961) was created as a separate local government area
The Australian state of Western Australia is divided into 141 local government areas...
Boyup Brook was declared a town on 9 February 1900. The district had an area of 1240 square miles (3,211.6 km²), and in December 1900 an estimated population of 400. Milestones in the town's early history include:
- 1900 - The town's first building was opened, a school, with 15 students.
- 1909 - A railway line from Donnybrook reached Boyup Brook.
- 1910 - The Agricultural Hall was opened.
- 1911 - A permanent policeman was assigned to the town. The hotel was opened. The railway line was extended from Boyup Brook to Kojonup and Katanning.
- 1912 - An official post office was established. (An unofficial post office had existed for three years prior to that.)
- 1914 - Land in the towns site was opened for leasing.
- 1924 - The Upper Blackwood Soldiers' Memorial Hospital was opened.
- c. 1930 - Electricity was generated and distributed within the town site.
- 1936 - The town hall was opened.
Name of the town
The town was originally gazetted as Boyup by an Executive Council minute dated 31 January 1900.
However the name Boyup Brook was in common use by the locals, the Progress Committee and the Upper Blackwood Road Board
The Shire of Boyup Brook is a Local Government Area located in the South West region of Western Australia, about southeast of Perth, the state capital. The Shire covers an area of and its seat of government is the town of Boyup Brook.-History:...
. In 1908 residents suggested that the town be renamed to Boyup Brook, to avoid confusion with the similarly named Boyanup. Lee Steere, by now the Speaker of the Assembly
The Speaker of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly is the presiding officer in the Legislative Assembly. The office has existed since the creation of the Legislative Assembly in 1890 under the Constitution Act 1889...
and member for Nelson, which included the area, strongly supported the use of the name over that of "Throssell", which had been advocated by some at the time.
The name was ultimately changed to Boyup Brook on 5 February 1909 to match the railway station that was built in 1908–1909. Even after the change, there was still confusion about the name within the government, as can be seen in the name and text of the Boyup-Kojonup Railway Act 1909
, assented some 10 months after the official change of name.
Country music festival
The town hosts the Boyup Brook Country Music Festival, an annual event, held in February each year. The festival has been held since 1986 and the attendance at the event has increased from 600 at the first festival to over 17,000 in 2008.