Blacktown Australia Australia
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History

History

Blacktown - The Region

The area comprising the City of Blacktown has a long history - Aborigines belonging to the Darug tribe certainly inhabited the area long before European settlement and archaeological evidence of their settlement has been found along creeks in the area. Europeans on exploratory expeditions to the Hawkesbury and beyond traversed the area and the first European settlement occurred at the base of Prospect Hill in August 1791.

Since that time, the area has changed and developed from a largely rural community. Some traces of the past still exist in areas to the north west, although the plans for development will see drastic changes in the next few years.

Pre - 1788  The Aboriginal people of the Western Cumberland Plain referred to themselves as the Darug (also spelt as Dharug, Daruk, Dharuk and Dharruk). The three Clans of the Blacktown area included: Gomerigal - South Creek; Wawarawarry - Eastern Creek; and Warmuli - Prospect. The impact of white settlement meant that there was competition for land and resources. While numbers declined there has always been an Aboriginal presence in Blacktown and today, this is reflected in the name of the City and its suburb Dharruk and the fact that Blacktown has the largest Aboriginal population in the state.
1788 Governor Phillip travelled to Prospect Hill in April.
1791 In February, Governor Phillip granted land to 13 people at Prospect Hill. These were the first land grants in the Blacktown District.
1800 Population was 16.
1801 John Macarthur buys 1770 acres at Seven Hills.
1804

The Battle of Vinegar Hill was fought at Rouse Hill on 5th March. Convicts escaping from the Castle Hill barracks clashed with Government troops under Major George Johnson, declaring themselves to be for 'Liberty or Death'. The convicts were easily defeated and died in the battle or its aftermath.

 

1819 On 31st August, land granted to Colebee and Nurragingy by Gov. Macquarie is registered.
1820s A number of land grants were made. The Native Institute, known as ' Black Town', was built at Plumpton to assimilate the Aborigines into European ways. It was abandoned by 1833.
1823 Native Institution (School for Aboriginal Children) moved from Parramatta to Black Town.
1824 Bungarribee House erected for John Campbell.
1827 Bushranger, Jack Donahue (Wild Colonial Boy) starts robbing in the Blacktown area.
1841 St. Bartholomew's Church, Prospect, dedicated by Bishop Broughton.


St. Bartholomew's Church, Prospect Sydney Motor Sport Park

1850s - 60s Original land grants were sub-divided.
1860 Railway comes to Blacktown with the first railway station called 'Black Town Road Station' (Great Western Line).
1862 First Post Office opens at the railway station. Becomes Blacktown in official records.
1864 Railway extended from Blacktown to Richmond.
1867 Prospect Public School opened.
1872 First butcher opens in Blacktown (Edward Palmer).
1875 Rooty Hill Public School opened.
1876 Christ Church opened in Flushcombe Road.
1877 Blacktown Public School opens.
1878 Riverstone Meatworks starts operating.
1880s Thousands of residential lots were released in Mount Druitt, Rooty Hill and Marsden Park.
1880 St. Andrew's Church of England opened in Seven Hills.
1887 Woodstock Fruit Cannery begins operating.
1888 Prospect Reservoir opened.
1889 First bakery opens in Blacktown (Sam Snyder).
1892 Services commence at St. Patrick's Church.
1906 The Shire of Blacktown (104 square miles) was created by Local Government Act of 1906 with the first Council meeting was held at the Rooty Hill School of Arts.
1912 First aircraft crash in Australia occurred along the railway line between Mt Druitt and Rooty Hill. First policeman appointed in Blacktown. First Council Chambers opened.
1914 Population was 6,000.
1918 Blacktown's first Savings Bank agency opens.
1920 First Blacktown Show held. First taxi service begins operating in Blacktown (John Miller).
1921 Blacktown's first picture theatre opens (Rivoli Theatre). Population was 7,381.
1930 Electricity came to Blacktown.
1933 Population was 13,724.
1939 Council Chambers extended. Post Office opens in Flushcombe Road.
1947 Population was 17,750. Seven Hills Housing Commission Estate commenced.
1950s - present   Large residential and industrial releases.
1952 Patrician Brothers' High School opened.
1953 Ian Clunies Ross Animal Research Laboratory (C.S.I.R.O.) opens at Prospect.
1954 Population was 31,748.
1955 Railway line electrified to Blacktown.
1957 Bungarribee House demolished. Ukrainian Church opened on Kildare Road.
1958 Ambulance Station opens at Blacktown.
1959 Russian Orthodox Church opened in Kempsey Street. Local Government boundaries change, leaving 98 square miles in Blacktown Shire. Marayong School opens.
1960 Blacktown linked to Sydney and Metropolitan telephone exchanges.
1961 Blacktown became a Municipality on 17th June. Blacktown Swimming Pool is opened.
1965 Blacktown Hospital opens.
1966 Population was 111,488. Blacktown Court House and Police Station opens. Housing Commission developments starts in Mt. Druitt.
1967 Blacktown Library opened.
1969 K-Mart opens in Blacktown. Blacktown TAFE opened.
1973 Westpoint Shopping Centre opens in Blacktown. Mt. Druitt Shopping Centre opened.
1974 McDonald's opens, Main Street, Blacktown. Blacktown-Richmond Railway line electrified. Village Twin Cinema opened in Blacktown.
1975 Population 165,000.
1978 2WS Radio Station started broadcasting.
1979 With even more growth, Blacktown became a City on 7th March. Mt. Druitt TAFE opened.
1981 Council granted its Coat of Arms. Population 181,139.
1982 Mt. Druitt Hospital opened.
1983 Parklea Prison opens.
1989 Parklea Markets begin operating.
1990 First race at Eastern Creek Raceway.
1991 First Australian 500 cc Grand Prix at Eastern Creek Raceway. Population was 211,613.
1992 B.H.P. Mini Steel Mill is opened at Rooty Hill. Phillip Parkway opened.
1993 2WS starts broadcasting on FM band.
1994 Blacktown Ring Road opened.
1995 New Railway Station and Bus Interchange opened in Blacktown. Opening of Nirimba Education Precinct (formerly naval base HMAS Nirimba).
1996 Population of the Blacktown Local Government Area at the census was 232,219.
2000 Blacktown City Olympic Park (Doonside) is the venue for Olympic softball and 2nd venue for Olympic baseball during the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. New Blacktown Hospital Opens.
2001 St Bartholomew's Church restored and expressions of interest called for future use of the building. Population of Blacktown Local Government area at the census was 256,364.
2002 Golfer Greg Norman is part of a consortium buying property for a golf course and residential area in Schofields. Two new radio stations open in the area - Radio 2 and FM 103.2 (2CBA). Blacktown Arts Centre opens in former Christ Church, Flushcombe Road, Blacktown.
2003 Blacktown Leisure Centre, Stanhope opens. Work begins on the M7 (Western Sydney Orbitol). Construction of a new central library at Blacktown commenced. New interchange at Mt Druitt station commenced. Construction of extensions to Westpoint Shopping Centre commenced.
2004 Bicentennial of the Battle of Vinegar Hill.
2005 Blacktown City Max Webber Library (corner Flushcombe Road and Alpha Street) opens.
2006 Blacktown celebrates its Centenary of Local Government. Emerton Leisure Centre opens.
2007 Blacktown Arts Centre re-opens after a $1.9 million refurbishment. Blacktown CitLy becomes the first Australian City to sign the Solar Cities agreement. Blacktown City opens its first Visitor Information & Heritage Centre (located in the former Blacktown Public School building on Flushcombe Rd, opposite the Max Webber Library).
2008 Development applications for AFL and Cricket facilities to be built at Blacktown Olympic Park are approved. Tenders are called for the design and construction of a $10.4 million expansion to Blacktown Leisure Centre, which will include the Dennis Johnson Branch Library.
2009 Dennis Johnson branch library and Blacktown Leisure Centre extensions are officially opened. AFL and Cricket precinct at Blacktown Olympic Park are opened. Plans are announced for a locally based AFL team to compete in the national league in 2012. 
2010 Riverstone celebrated the bicentenary of the granting of land to Maurice O'Connell with a year long programme of events. Darug Research and Information Centre opened at Seven Hills. The Village Green at Blacktown was redeveloped. Almost 1300 hectares were rezoned in the Riverstone area for residential development. Residential development of the new suburb Bungarribee commenced. Great Western Sydney Giants Australian Football League team was formed. 
2011 Wet 'n' Wild theme park proposed for Prospect. Redevelopment of Blacktown Showground and Francis Park commenced. Mt Druitt Library site redeveloped as a library and community centre. Community Resource Hub opened in Ropes Crossing.
2012 Blacktown Football Park opened at Rooty Hill. Work began on the redevelopment of Blacktown Showground. Chang Lai Yuan Chinese Garden opened at Nurragingy Reserve. Neighbourhood Centre at Stonecutters Ridge opened. Large recycling plant opened at Eastern Creek. New commuter car park under construction at Mt Druitt. Eastern Creek Raceway changed its name to Sydney Motorsport Park. Construction of Wet 'n' Wild theme park at Prospect began.

 

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