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Christies Beach RLA 266739

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History of Christies Beach

10 Sep 2013 Christies Beach 0 Comment

We have come a long way!

The face of Christies Beach is progressively changing with developments and investments. What once was a small village is now a thriving beachside tourist community.

Beach Road/Esplanade Christies Beach

Before European settlement, the area was inhabited by the Kaurna people. “Kaurna Aboriginal people are the Traditional Owners of the Adelaide plains in South Australia. Kaurna land extends north towards Crystal Brook, down the Adelaide plains, south along the coast to Cape Jervis and is bounded by the Mount Lofty Ranges to the east. The arrival of the European settlers disrupted the Kaurna way of life that relied on mobility within their defined territory.”

“An area of surveyed land covering Glenelg to Witton Bluff (Christies Beach) known as District B, was made available for settlement in 1838, with more land surveyed within District C, covering Witton Bluff to Aldinga Bay, made available for settlement one year later.”

“As with most areas, the early settlers built their towns and homes along creeks where there was permanent or semi-permanent water. Farmers established homesteads along what was originally called Anderson’s Creek, later called Christie Creek. Created in 1853, the District Council of Morphett Vale took in a region of farms, vineyards, orchards and, at times, mines. Stretching to the sea, it included what is now known as Christies Beach.”

Christies Beach 1940’s

The beach was used for whalers, which was actually based at Port Noarlunga and lasted less than a decade as the remaining whales migrated on to safer seas. “At least 15 whaling stations are believed to have existed on the coast of South Australia during the years leading up to official European settlement in 1836 and shortly thereafter.” – “The Port Noarlunga whale fishery was also known as the Onkaparinga fishery. The establishment was operated and owned by Mr Heppenstall who employed 25 men and 2 catch boats. The station was established in 1841. The station was not successful and closed at the end of 1843 without any significant earnings. However much has been learned from the whalers who worked for Mr Heppenstall and their movements were recorded thoroughly in the Police Correspondence Files. Information recorded includes their rowdy nature, smuggling enterprises, the discovery of a drowning victim (who was employed at the fishery) and the seizure of a whale carcass by the police which had washed up down the coast. Mr Heppenstall is believed to have built the first permanent structure at Noarlunga, a residence which was named Whaleview.”

“Christies Beach was named after Lambert Christie, who was born at Cape Jervis in 1858 and, with his father, managed the mail service to Kangaroo Island. Some four decades later, in 1895, Lambert Christie purchased a fine selection of farming land surrounding the Dalebrook homestead. Other families worked nearby land and, until the 1920s, life continued in the steady pattern of farming communities.”

Mr Christie at Dalebrook

“Within twenty years of European settlement, many Kaurna had died from illnesses and diseases introduced by the settlers and the survivors were transported to a native settlement at Poonindie, near Port Lincoln on the Eyre Peninsula. Since the 1960s people of Kaurna descent started to move back to Adelaide areas to live and revivify Kaurna culture.”

“In Lohmann Park, on the corner of Gulfview and Galloway Roads, is a magnificent bronze sculpture, ‘the Rainmakers’. Sculpted by Geoff Shedley, the statue shows two Aboriginal people, sitting and contemplating the area.

The statue was unveiled by the then Premier of South Australia, Frank Walsh on 21 May 1965.”

In the 2011 Cencus the population of Christies Beach was 5,267. This figure is no surprise with the beautiful beach and the relaxed life style.

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