23179 Major Mitchell memorial Queens Park Coleraine 2043
Statement of Significance
What is significant?
The Major Mitchell Memorial in Dunkeld is located in the south west corner of a public reserve on the Glenelg Highway. It takes the form of an obelisk set on three stone blocks. The shaft is dressed sandstone and plain. The bluestone blocks are dressed to a rock-face finish. A gilded incision has been written on the top bluestone block honouring Major Mitchell's discovery and ascent of nearby Mount Abrupt on September 14th, 1836. The memorial was erected by residents of Dunkeld and district in 1914 to commemorate Major Mitchell's 1836 exploration.
Mitchell passed nearby Dunkeld at the beginning of August 1836, following the Glenelg River downstream. He stated in his journal "The country on its banks was, as far as I could see, the finest imaginable, either for sheep and cattle or for cultivation".
Monuments and memorials to commemorate Major Mitchell's epic 1836 journey can be found in many locations throughout south western Victoria. The Major crossed Victoria's northern and western plains, found a European settlement already established at Portland, and returned to New South Wales to give a glowing account of the rich land of 'Australia Felix'. One hundred years later, local communities at points along his former route engaged enthusiastically in a bout of centennial monument building. After war memorials, the Mitchell monuments are the most common form of public commemoration in the region.
How is it Significant?
The Major Mitchell Monument, Glenelg Highway, Dunkeld is of historical significance to the community of Dunkeld and the Southern Grampians Shire.
Why is it Significant?
The Major Mitchell Monument is of historical significance because it commemorates the very beginning of European interest in, occupation of and subsequent exploitation of the further Western District. It is example of the way in which Major Mitchell is revered as a person of extreme importance within the community.