The Dharug and Lower Hawkesbury Historical Society would like to extend the invitation to the general public to join us as we visit Wisemans Ferry along the Singleton Road. This locality was originally known as Lower Portland Head. Located further downstream The Wisemans Ferry Cemetery is also known as Laughtondale.

Date: Saturday, 26th September 2020
Time: 10.15am
Location: The meeting place will be provided when booking is confirmed.
Lunch: Bring along your lunch and return to Wisemans Ferry mid-afternoon.
Cost: $5.00 for Members and $7.50 for Non-Members

We will have a quick morning tea to discuss the historical context of the area we are to visit. We will then drive out along Singleton Road to Wisemans Well. The historical significance of this site is the possible importance to the Great North Road construction and the early settlers as the source of fresh water. We will look at maps and diagrams of the site and the archaeological assessment and management recommendations conducted by Siobhan Lavelle in association with Dr Grace Karskens (who wrote The Colony, A History of Early Sydney) on behalf of the DLHH Society.

We will then continue to Wisemans Ferry Cemetery where we will do a tour of the grounds sharing the history of the many significant gravesites. Interred in this cemetery is Peter Hibbs [1847] who sailed with Captain James Cook to Australia in 1770 and again with Captain Arthur Philip in the First Fleet. Pioneering families include the Douglass, Books, Chaseling, Rose and Leet families. This is also the final resting place of Soloman Wiseman [1838].

Around mid-day, we will drive along to the One Tree Reach Wetlands where we will park and have lunch. The One Tree Reach Wetlands represents one of the few intact natural wetlands in the lower Hawkesbury River. The local area was officially settled from 1810 by Europeans. While little is known of what modifications early settlers made to this area, historical surveys reveal that from the late 1870 a ‘ditch’ or drainage line had been cut at the northern end of these wetlands to the Hawkesbury River. After lunch, the history and significance of this area will be discussed, and we will do one or both of the boardwalk walks into this site.

Afterwards, we will proceed back to the car park at Wisemans Ferry. Participants may wish to complete the day with an exploration of the Museum within the Wisemans Ferry Inn former home of Solomon Wiseman.

Bookings and contact details in case of rain to 0405 321 478 (leave a message) by Tuesday, 22nd September 2020

Please note:
Numbers are strictly limited to comply with current COVID-19 restrictions on outdoor gatherings. If you are booked in but unable to make it on the day please advise ASAP as we expect a waiting list. If more than 20 people turn up (i.e. without a booking) we will not be able to proceed with the excursion.

We require all participants to observe the 1.5 metre apart rule (members of the same household excepted) and practise good hand hygiene.

All participants will be required to provide contact details and sign a indemnity form on arrival before participating in the excursion.

Any further information please contact us on [email protected]

Bring along lunch, snacks, water, hat, sunscreen, repellent and wet weather gear. Sturdy shoes are suggested. All welcome.

Robyn Downham
President/Publicity Officer
Dharug and Lower
Hawkesbury Historical Society

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