"Dunrobin" Estate Closer Settlement 1912
Casterton, S-W Victoria, Australia
Glenelg & Wannon Region, S-W Victoria, Australia
"The Argus" (Melbourne, Vic.) Wednesday, 17th January 1912.
VICTORIA. THE CLOSER SETTLEMENT ACTS. SUBDIVISION OF THE DUNROBIN ESTATE Into Allotments ranging from 5 acres to 724 acres in area. Available for application until Wednesday, Feb. 12, 1912.
The Dunrobin Estate comprises an area of 11,118 acres, and adjoins the rising railway town of Casterton, the most distant allotments being within seven miles.
The estate consists of land suitable either for dairying, mixed farming, fruit-growing, or grazing. Good roads intersect the property, leading to various centres in the district. The Butter Factory at Casterton provides an outlet for dairy products. Agricultural produce and meat may be despatched by rail to Melbourne, Geelong, or Portland to the principal markets of the State or to oversea destinations.
The rainfall is good, and the climatic conditions suitable for all kinds of farming and stock-raising. A special feature of the subdivision is the provision made for Agricultural Labourers' Allotments close in to Casterton. Provision has also been made for Sites for Schools, Municipal Sale-yards, and an Agricultural College. The LOCAL LAND BOARD to deal with applications will be held at CASTERTON on WEDNESDAY, the 21st of FEBRUARY, 1912. APPLY NOW. Plans, Application Forms and Full Particulars from THE SECRETARY, Lands Purchase Board, Melbourne.

[NOTE : This advertisement also contains a map of the estate and a table of details for each allotment.]

"The Argus" Saturday, 24th February 1912
CASTERTON, Friday.--The Dunrobin Land Board completed its work in dealing with the applications this afternoon. The Mechanics' Hall was packed to the door with applicants and others. The interest shown, recalled the old land boards of the sixties. The homestead block, on which the valuation for the buildings was 150, was recomended to J. Hart of Ballarat.
The recommendations were :-
  • Allotment 1, parish of Casterton, 347 acres, 5/15/, J. Murray.
  • Allotment 2, parish of Casterton, 313 acres, 5/2/6, Miss E. Widdicombe.
  • Allotment 3, parish of Casterton, 238 acres, 6/10/, Mr W. Munro.
  • Allotment 4, parish of Casterton, 170 acres, 10, J. Wilson.
  • Allotment 7, parish of Casterton, 155 acres, 14, E. J. Black.
  • Allotment 8, parish of Casterton, 155 acres, 15, H. Hayward (Henty).
  • Allotment 9, parish of Casterton, 170 acres, 8/15/, T. Lowe.
  • Allotment 10, parish of Casterton, 167 acres, 14/15/, J. Beddell.
  • Allotment 11, parish of Casterton, 158 acres, 12/12/, G. H. Ley.
  • Allotment 12, parish of Casterton, 168 acres, 13, D. C. Ferguson.
  • Allotment 13, parish of Casterton, 137 acres, 14, J. McMillan.
  • Allotment 15, parish of Casterton, 157 acres, 11/10/, W. J. Craig.
  • Allotment 16, parish of Casterton, 161 acres, 13, A. Gravestock.
  • Allotment 18, parish of Casterton, 340 acres, 11/11/, J. Hart (Ballarat).
  • Allotment 20, parish of Casterton, 724 acres, 3/5/, F. S. Heath.
  • Allotment 22, parish of Casterton, 178 acres, 13, A. Brens.
  • Allotment 23, parish of Casterton, 176 acres, 13/10/, G. McGrath.
  • Allotment 24, parish of Casterton, 164 acres, 10/15/, C. W. Barr.
  • Allotment 25, parish of Casterton, 173 acres, 12/10/, J. McIntyre.
  • Allotment 26, parish of Casterton, 188 acres, 12, A. Hortle.
  • Allotment 27, parish of Casterton, 206 acres, 12, J. Hinkley.
  • Allotment 28, parish of Casterton, 288 acres, 7/10/, J. Gunther.
  • Allotment 29, parish of Casterton, 233 acres, 7/10/, H. G. Goode (Sandford).
  • Allotment 30, parish of Casterton, 189 acres, 10, C. O'Brien.
  • Allotment 31, parish of Casterton, 186 acres, 8, J. Harward.
  • Allotment 32, parish of Casterton, 215 acres, 8, M. Gasperino.
  • Allotment 33, parish of Casterton, 356 acres, 4, N. Paris.
  • Allotment 34, parish of Casterton, 50 acres, 5, J. Picken.
  • Allotment 35, parish of Casterton, 88 acres, 21, G. T. Hurst (Casterton).
  • Allotment 36, parish of Casterton, 104 acres, 11/10, D. Hurley (Henty).
  • Allotment 37, parish of Casterton, 76 acres, 13, W. G. Roberts (Casterton).
  • Allotment 41, parish of Casterton, 5 acres, 25, F. Spurrell.
  • Allotment 42, parish of Casterton, 5 acres, 25, J. Blair.
  • Allotment 2, parish of Casterton, 138 acres, 16, J. F. Spencer.
  • Allotment 3, parish of Casterton, 135 acres, 14, W. G. Connell.
  • Allotment 4, parish of Casterton, 120 acres, 12, J. Hardy.
  • Allotment 5, parish of Casterton, 122 acres, 18, H. Munro.
  • Allotment 6, parish of Casterton, 123 acres, 11, J. F. Howlett.
  • Allotment 11, parish of Bahgallah, 481 acres, 5/10/6, R. Clode.
  • Allotment 32, parish of Bahgallah, 606 acres, 4/2/6, R. Somerville.
  • Allotment 33, parish of Bahgallah, 607 acres, 4/2/6, J. Grummett.
  • Allotment 43, parish of Bahgallah, 517 acres, 3/12/6, V. Barris.
  • Allotment 1, Section 18a, parish of Bahgallah, 20 acres, 6, J. T. Patching.
  • Allotment 2, Section 18a, parish of Bahgallah, 25 acres, ?, H. J. Baugh (Killara).
  • Allotment 3, Section 18a, parish of Bahgallah, 20 acres, 6, P. P. McDonald (Casterton).
  • Allotment 11, parish of Bahgallah, 50 acres, 4, F. P. Thompson.
  • Allotment 12, parish of Bahgallah, 50 acres, 4/15/, J. H. Thom.
  • Allotment 13, parish of Bahgallah, 50 acres, 5, R. Gill.
  • Allotment 14, parish of Bahgallah, 50 acres, 5, S. C. McCombe.
  • Allotment 15, parish of Bahgallah, 50 acres, 4/10, C. Laube.
  • Allotment 16, parish of Bahgallah, 51 acres, 4/2/6, S. Norris.
  • Allotment 17, parish of Bahgallah, 83 acres, 3, E. A. Fox.
NOTE.--Map of Dunrobin Estate and table of allotments in "The Argus" of Wednesday, 17th Jan 1912.

"The Border Watch" (Mount Gambier, SA) Wednesday, 28th February 1912.
Dunrobin Estate. --- CROWD OF APPLICANTS.
The Dunrobin Land Board has completed its work of dealing with the applications for this land. The Mechanics' Hall was packed to the door with applicants and others. The interest shown recalled the old land boards of the sixties. The homestead block, on which the valuation for the buildings was 150, was recommended to J. Hart, of Ballarat. The estate contains 11,118 acres. About 8,000 acres had previously been sold by auction. There were 160 applicants. Many of these, however, applied for a number of blocks, in order to increase their chances. The estate was cut up into 68 blocks of 5 acres to 724 acres ; and the values placed upon them varied from 2 10/ per acre to 25. A German, who had been in Canada and Cape Colony, was an applicant for a small block. He remarked to a person, who advised him to preserve his railway ticket, to enable him to return, "I won't return ; I am satisfied with this place." An other applicant brougnt with him his whole family and furniture. Others camped on the blocks they had applied for, under the impression that it might strengthen their chances.
The recommendations were as follow :--
  • Allotment 1, parish of Casterton, 347 acres, 5 15/, J. Murray.
  • Allotment 2, 313 acres, 5 2/6, Miss E. Widdicombe.
  • Allotment 3, 238 acres, 6 10/, W. Munro.
  • Allot. 4, 170 acres, 10, J. Wilson.
  • Allot. 7, 155 acres, 14, E. J. Black.
  • Allot. 8, 155 acres, 15, H. Hayward, Henty.
  • Allot. 9, 170 acres, 8 15/, T. Lowe.
  • Allot. 11, 158 acres, 12 12/, G. H. Ley.
  • Allot. 10, 167 acres, 14 15/, J. Beddell.
  • Allot. 12, 168 acres, 13, D. C. Ferguson.
  • Allot. 13, 137 acres, 14, J. McMillan, Henty.
  • Allot. 15, 157 acres, 11 10/, W. J. Craig.
  • Allot. 16, 161 acres, 13, A. Gravestock.
  • Allot. 18, 340 acres, 11 11/, J. Hart, Ballarat.
  • Allot. 20, 724 acres, 3 5/, F. S. Heath.
  • Allot. 22, 178 acres, 13, A. Brens.
  • Allot. 23, 176 acres, 13 10/, G. McGrath.
  • Allot. 24, 164 acres, 10 15/, C. W. Barr.
  • Allot. 25, 173 acres, 12 10/, J. MacIntyre.
  • Allot. 26, 188 acres, 12, A. Hortle.
  • Allot. 27, 206 acres, 12, J. Hinkley.
  • Allot. 28, 268 acres, 7 30/, J. Gunther.
  • Allot. 29, 233 acres, 7 10/, H. G. Goode, Sandford.
  • Allot. 30, 189 acres, 10, C. O'Brien.
  • Allot. 31, 186 acres, 8 J. Harward.
  • Allot. 32, 215 acres, 8, M. Gasperino.
  • Allot. 33, 356 acres, 4, N. Paris.
  • Allot. 34, 50 acres, 5, J. Picken.
  • Allot, 35, 88 acres, 21, G. T. Hurst, Casterton.
  • Allot. 36, 104 acres, 11 10/, D. Hurley, Henty.
  • Allot. 37, 76 acres, 13, W. G. Roberts, Casterton.
  • Allot. 41, 5 acres, 25, F. Spurrell.
  • Allot. 42, 5 acres, 25, J. Blair.
  • Allot. 2, 138 acres, 16, J. F. Spencer.
  • Allot. 3, 135 acres, 14, W. G. Connell.
  • Allot. 4, 130 acres, 12, J. Hardy.
  • Allot. 5, 122 acres, 18, H. Munro.
  • Allot. 6, 123 acres, 11, J. F. Howlett.
  • Allot. 11, 481 acres, 5 10/6, R. Clode.
  • Allot. 32, 606 acres, 4 2/6, R. Somerville.
  • Allot. 33, 607 acres, 4 2/6, J. Grummett.
  • Allot. 43, 517 acres, 3 12/6, V. Barris.
  • Allot. 1, section 18a, 25 acres, 6, J. T. Patching.
  • Allot. 2, section 18a, 25 acres, H. J. Baugh, Killara.
  • Allot. 9, section 18a, 20 acres, 6, P. P. MacDonald, Casterton.
  • Allot. 11, 50 acres, 4, F. P. Thompson.
  • Allot. 12, 50 acres, 4 15/, J. H. Thom.
  • Allot. 13, 50 acres, 5, R. Gill.
  • Allot. 14, 50 acres, 5, S. C. McCombe.
  • Allot. 15, 50 acres, 4 10/, C. Laube.
  • Allot. 16, 51 acres, 4 2/6, S. Norris.
  • Allot. 17, 83 acres, 3, E. A. Fox.

"The Argus" (Melbourne, Vic.) Saturday, 20th April 1912.
HOMES FOR LIFE. -- THE LAND HUNGER. -- By BENDIGONIAN. The eventful day, long awaited at Casterton had arrived at last. The members of the Land Board had arrived, and Dunrobin estate, purchased by the Closer Settlement Board after years of hesitancy was to be allotted among the land seekers, who had flocked into the town to urge, with all the impressiveness of men seeking to establish homes, their claims for the block into which the estate had been subdivided. There was excitement not only among the applicants, many of whom were from remote districts, but among the business people as well for Dunrobin estate stretches right into the town, and city folk should understand that its settlement means more mouths to feed and more bodies to clothe, more business in every way to the people of Casterton. Even the visitors, the commercial travellers, and the holiday makers, found their interest in the event increase hourly, and soon they were as much wrapped up in the proceedings as if they were among the applicants for the most-sought block, and believed that their future welfare lay in the decision of the board.
All day men gathered in little knots, about the Mechanics'-hall, where the land board sat, and heard the claims of the applicants, making inquiry as to their experience in dairying and farming, their finances, their condition of life, the number of their children--endeavouring in short to select the candidates most likely to prove the best men to work the blocks to be allotted. They were mostly all tall, loose limbed men--there was scarcely a man of medium height among them. All bore the unmistakable impressions of an arduous outdoor life. Some had brought their wives with them, to cheer them up during the anxious hours of waiting for the board's decisions, and it did not require much observation to read in the faces of the patient couples a pathetic wistfulness for the surety of a home for life. For that is what the allotment of the best blocks should mean to the fortunate applicants. No wonder, then, that one sturdy couple, standing apart from the groups of men, showed anxiety and hopefulness blended in their faces--they had eleven children to bring up. They were mostly farmers renting small farms or farm workers, who had been saving for years, with the one fixed unalterable purpose of securing a block on Dunrobin when it was thrown open for settlement. Some of them had their eyes fixed on a certain block for years. Some of them had planned with their wives, months and months ago, how they would turn their block to the best advantage if only they were awarded one.
The majority of them knew each other well, or fairly well. It was "Good day, Tom," or "Good day, Bill," and they shook hands heartily, as if instead of being rivals they were meeting on the show-grounds.
They talked for hours in little groups, and seemed never to tire of standing, and one eye was always open to pick out a choice horse passing along the street. Many a yarn was interrupted by-- "Now, there's a nice cut of a horse. Who does he belong to?" The talk might have been progressing over the maize patch or the lucerne paddock, or even the price of oats, but the sight of the horse put all other subjects to forgetfulness and it was a most surprising--in fact an almost unprecedented circumstance--if some one in the group did not know the pedigree of the horse, and have a complete knowledge of the career from the day after it was broken in.
Two days thus passed while the claims of 100 applicants for much less than half that number of blocks were being considered. The news spread that the board would announce its decisions at 9 o'clock at night, Several hundred people gathered about the Mechanics'-hall at 8 o'clock, and several times, the cry was raised. "the board are coming!" the crowd rushed into the hall, and filled it, but the hall was quickly emptied after every fresh alarm for everyone seemed to have a horror of sitting long inside, which is one of the creations of an outdoor life. At 9 o'clock the alarm was a true one, the hall was speedily crowded, a member of the board mounted the platform, and was received with hearty hand-clapping and vigorous stamping of feet. But the board member could not allay the anxiety of all the applicants, and their friends, and satisfy the curiosity of the townspeople. As he explained, there were as many as 27, 28, and 29 applicants for one block, and the members of the board, working as hard as they could, could not make their selections as rapidly as anticipated, especially as the applicants were such a fine class of men. The names of seventeen successful applicants were announced and the audience dispersed for the night to await the tidings the morning might bring them, while the local newspapers went to press and produced "extraordinaries" which were distributed to subscribers at midnight.
Late next afternoon a large and expectant audience assembled in the hall. Each man held a list of the blocks, and perused it as if studying a programme before the curtain went up at the theatre. The blocks were numbered but many of the audience knew many of them better by their local descriptions, such as "The Section" (where the prize cattle were reared), "The Green Lagoon" and "The Homestead Block." Full of importance as befitted the occasion, the three members of the land board mounted the platform and took their seats. There was an outburst of applause as the chairman arose, but as he stood and faced the gathering and looked upon row upon row of tanned faces, with hear and there a softer, but scarcely less sunburnt face of a woman, there was a deep hush, such as only pervades an assemblage when it is expectant of some announcement of striking humour and interest. Briefly the chairman spoke of the difficulties he and his colleagues had met in making their choice when the applicants were so numerous and worthy, and then he announced the names of the successful men block after block. Each name was applauded, but naturally the applause was louder when the proud man was a resident of the district. "Good old Bob!" "Good old Jim!" the audience shouted, and they were ungrudging in their applause. Not a single outcry was raised ; not a murmur was heard. Yet, there were many disappointments, and later on some comment was made, mainly by townspeople, about a few of the selections, for it was the general opinion that a resident of the district, with a wide knowledge of the applicants, should always be picked to assist the board in these allotments. But not a word of discontent was heard in the hall. A man's face lit-up when his name was called, and hands were thrust out to "shake with him." "Good old ___" was always the refrain as the block and its owner were called, and if the applicant did not happen to be known, if he were a stranger to the town he was "a party of the name of ___," Brown or Smith, as the case might be. In half an hour the fortunes of 100 men and their wives and children had been determined for some time to come, and the audience dispersed. There was no mistaking the feelings of one fine-looking fellow as to his fortune. He drew himself up to his full height on the steps of the hall as if there had not been room enough inside, and said "I've got a home for life."
In a week, the new land owners were starting to shift their belongings to their blocks and the far-spreading, breezy downs of Dunrobin, always fair to look upon, smiled a welcome to the settlers' children as they arrived at their new homes, prospective scholars for the new school to be erected on the hilltop, where, just now only the magpies chatter and carol.

"The Argus"

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