The Cuyuac Homestead complex is located approximately six kilometers west of the village of Nareen, one
and a half kilometers south of the Chetwynd-Nareen Road, overlooking Webb's Creek. The land which
makes up Cuyuac was taken up in the 1880s, consisting of small portions of several larger pastoral runs. The
first owner of Cuyuac was Mrs. Martha Quarterman, the widow of John Quarterman, who was implicated in a
parliamentary corruption scandal with Hugh Glass involving the 1860s Land Acts. The first homestead and
gardens were laid out in the 1880s. Many of the mature trees in the garden are remnants from this period,
including the Monterey Pines (Pinus radiata), Stone Pine (Pinus pinea), English Elms (Ulmus procera) and Norfolk Island Pines
(Araucaria heterophylla). The modern garden, which dates from 1964, has been planted with an impressive Atlantica Cedar (Cedrus atlantica) and Pencil Pine or Italian Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens) as well as a variety of
exotic deciduous trees, which are of less significance. The property was sold to Mr. John Martin in 1898, who
subsequently sold it to R. H. Edgar in 1908. The original homestead remained until it was destroyed by fire
in 1964. The only buildings that survived were the stables, a shepherd's watch box, mounted on red gum wooden sledge,
and a hut made of split palings with a shingle roof. The woolshed, some distance from the house, survives as well. Local architect W. Langham Proud designed the current
Cuyuac homestead in 1964. It is a two-storey building constructed of cream brick with terracotta roofing
tiles, designed in the conventional and rather conservative Cape Cod style. The split paling hut and the shepherd's watch box are in good
condition, the garden and plantings too, are in good condition.
How is it significant?
The Cuyuac Homestead Complex is of historical significance to the Southern Grampians Shire.
Why is it significant?
The complex is historically important as an unusual example of a selection of land being taken up by a
woman in the nineteenth century. Mrs. Quarterman, the widow of a disgraced Member of the Legislative
Council, John Quarterman was unusual in that she chose not to return to her family home, nearby Wando
Dale, but to take up land in her own right, constructing a homestead and garden on a property which was
some distance from others. It is also historically important for the associations with John Quarterman