Tumut Museum working on ‘Down the Main’ exhibition

Tumut Museum working on ‘Down the Main’ exhibition

Wynyard Street in the 1930s. Photo sourced by Chris Nicholes.

The Tumut Historical Society are hard at work putting together a new exhibition, which they expect to be ready for display at the museum around April next year.

The display will be called ‘Down the Main,’ and will explore the history of the area from the Racecourse, once called the Mill Angle, down Wynyard Street, incorporating Fitzroy and Russell Streets, in the 1800s.

If anyone has photos or bits of information from that time they would be much appreciated by the Historical Society, said President Marcia Commins.

“Anyone who’s had a business in the main street, or who has photos of buildings in the streets, we’d love to be able to get copies,” she said.

“The museum has the facilities to scan and get copies without them having to leave [the material] with us.

“We’ve been collecting bits and pieces for years, so it’s just a matter of putting it on the walls. It should be an interesting one.”

The Society are starting their research by focusing on the Mill Angle, the area around the Racecourse. This location actually started off as the centre of the town of Tumut, proclaimed in 1842.

Floods in the 1840s revealed the flaws in that plan, and the town centre was moved up the hill to its present location on the advice of a government surveyor, with the new town being gazetted in 1848. The first blocks of land were sold off in 1856.

“Most people wouldn’t know very much history about the Mill Angle,” said Marcia.

“After we’ve done that section we’re going to move up and do a history of Fitzroy Street in the 1800s, because once the town was set out into blocks and things Fitzroy Street was the main street, and Wynyard Street gradually took over.

“Russell Street was also a very important street, so we’ll be doing Russell Street as well.”

If you think you might have material that could contribute to the exhibition, the Historical Society can be contacted at 6947 9899, or by simply dropping in at the museum at 63 Capper Street.

In the meantime, the Chinese exhibition will remain open until ‘Down the Main’ is on display.

“It’s created such a lot of interest that we’re going to leave that there until the other one’s ready to be put up straight away,” said Marcia.