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Greenmount Hill

Author

Shire of Mundaring

Place Number

08572
There no heritage location found in the Google fusion table.

Location

Great Eastern Hwy Greenmount

Location Details

Local Government

Mundaring

Region

Metropolitan

Construction Date

Constructed from 1829

Demolition Year

N/A

Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
(no listings)

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management More information
Category Description
Municipal Inventory Adopted 22 Apr 1997

Statement of Significance

Greenmount Hill has very high aesthetic, social, historic and scientific significance for the State and the Shire of Mundaring because of its physical presence and landmark qualities. Its is of historic significance for Aboriginal sites, European settlement and scientific importance for the exploration and navigation of the region.

Physical Description

Greenmount Hill dominates the landscape to the south of Great Eastern Highway as it climbs the escarpment on it's way to the hinterland and ulitmately as the major road link to the Eastern States. Travelling west along the Highway the hill provides first, and a most spectacular view for the traveller, day or night, across the broad coastal plain and airport, to the city, Swan River and ocean beyond. Flashing navigation beacons in the hill identify it at night. Other than for Mundaring Weir and the Helena River, Greenmount Hill is the major physical feature of the shir eof Mundaring that has State significacne. Much of the hIll has been cleared over the years and the scars od quarries are still apparent. However, there is still many trees on the upper sections of the hill which has been incorporated into a National Park which protects it and provides a balance to the John Forrest national Park on the northern side of the Highway. The two parks either side of the Highway play an important part of providing vital, contiguous habitats for remaining pockets of flora and fauna unique to the Darling Range. One of the greatest threats to the hill's environment, and it's flora in particular, is the invasion in recent years of exotic weeds such as 'Watsonia'.
The historic hill, which has provided survey, navigation and orientation references for the metropolitan area since the time of the first explorers, also had significance for the original inhabitants of the region as evidenced by several recorded aboriginal sites of significance.

History

When Lieutenant Governor James Stirling assigned himself the 4,000 acres of Swan Location 16, it's eastern boundary was located near the summit on Greenmount Hill. When, why or from whom the name Greenmount originates has not been firmly established. The first known map to use the name Green Mount was published in 1833.
Although Ensign Dale reached the 209 metre summit on the 18th October 1829, and Stirling had been in the vicinity a few weeks before that, they are not officially credited with using the name. Surveyor John Septimus Roe's sketch of the Swan River in November 1892 does not use the name Greenmount. However, on 5th September 1831, when JS Roe instructed Dale about the route to York, he referred to Green Mount as a well known landmark. Even today, the Great Eastern Highway, at present the main route to the Eastern States, is said to travel 'up Greenmount', even though the road runs north of the actual hill.
In the early part of the colony's history the name 'Greenmount' covered a broad area. In the 1840's, the road to York was referred to as 'York Greenmount' and road to Toodyay as 'Toodyay Greenmount'. In 1846, a survey of the York Road carried out by surveyor Phillip Chauncy, mapped the area and noted the Green Mount Hill. In 1854, Lieutenant Edward DuCane from Guildford supervised the building of a covict depot near Greenmount Hill. Originally the barracks housed between 70 and 85 ticket of leae men. There was a cook-house, oven and fireplace and separate houses for staff and stores. The men were employed clearing, forming and surfacing the York Road. In addition they dug roadside wells and cut timber for the Guildford bridge and shingles for roofing.
By the mid 1860s, when many ticket of leave men had moved to private employment, the depot housed work release prisoners from Fremantle Gaol. From the 1870s, some men from the depot worked in the nearby Government bluestone quarry (Site 141). In 1877, when Alfred Smith established his sawmill at Smiths Mill (Glen Forrest) it was officially called York Greenmount Sawmill. In 1882, when contractor James Wright began work on the Eastern Railway (Site 204 ) the main construction camp was located west of Greenmount Hill. Greenmount was an original stopping point on the Eastern Railway and in 1891, a public picnic area called 'The Range' was created on land brought from Henry Brockman, the purchaser of Stirling's Swan Location 16. When the Greenmount Suburban Area was created between 1889 and 1890, it extended as far east as Mahogany Creek. In the late 1890s, sawmill operator Edmund Lacey quarried for granite and clay near Greenmount Hill, and 'Undercliffe' (Site 77), the residence of his daughter Clara and son-in-law Percy Robinson and its gardens attracted visitors by train.
In 1906, part of 'The Range' was excavated for a reservoir, and it exists in an enlarged and covered form at the corner of Coulston and Scott Streets. Like many areas in the 1920s, orchards in the area were eventually replaced by housing so that by 1937, a third of the Mundaring Roads Board population lived in Greenmount and Darlington. Post World War Two saw the former picnic reserve subdivision for housing. It had lost its bushland appeal as a result of training exercises for troops in both wars, and for many years it was a squatters camp. Greenmount Hill remains a state wide reference point with its air navigation beacon and the steep grades of Great Eastern Highway where it passes to the north of the actual hill.

Integrity/Authenticity

Integrity: High

Condition

Fair

References

Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
I Elliot; ibid. pp 4, 5, 11, 12, 15, 36, 40, 113, 126, 191, 205-206
M Bourke; "On the Swan"., pp. 184, 209, 252, 293, 299, 302.
a Hasluck; "Unwilling Immigrants". p 85.
MHHS File 'Greenmount'

Place Type

Landscape

Uses

Epoch General Specific
Present Use OTHER Other
Original Use OTHER Other

Creation Date

18 Jun 1997

Publish place record online (inHerit):

Approved

Last Update

01 Jan 2017

Disclaimer

This information is provided voluntarily as a public service. The information provided is made available in good faith and is derived from sources believed to be reliable and accurate. However, the information is provided solely on the basis that readers will be responsible for making their own assessment of the matters discussed herein and are advised to verify all relevant representations, statements and information.