Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Postcard from Numurkah

Hi everyone,

I was up in Numurkah this afternoon for a job interview.  It went reasonably well, although I think I waffled a bit.  I had some time to kill in that town afterwards however, before coming back to Shepparton for legal service volunteering, so I went exploring.

Numurkah is a reasonably old and well preserved town of about 4000 people (it feels smaller).  The parks are well maintained, and one of them has a number of more or less preserved farm machinery on display.

Minneapolis Moline tractor

Hornsby stationary steam engine

Fowler steam tractor.  These were customarily used for plowing, by winching a plough back and forth across a paddock using cables wrapped around the drum between the front wheels.

McCormick Deering tractor

The same park also has a 1943 K-class railway locomotive on display next to a mock platform

There is another park with a war memorial in place.  As usual, there is a depressingly long list of names of locals who did not return from the First World War.

The back side of the monument, however, was unusual.  The committee left space to include the names of any locals who fought in pretty well any of Australia's conflicts, even when it's extraordinarily unlikely any of them actually did.

The Sudan campaign of 1885, for instance, was made up of soldiers from another colony.  The force sent to the Boxer Rebellion was almost wholly naval (Numurkah is 150 miles from the sea).  And the North Russia campaign included at most a few hundred soldiers and sailors.  I know it sounds snotty to say it, but it may be the only time I've seen a memorial when there may not be anything for the town to remember!

That aside, the park is well laid out, with some good plaques about locals who served in World War Two, and a display including an anti-aircraft gun and field gun.

Finally, on the way out of town I noticed the old court house building.  For obvious reasons, I have a professional fondness for courthouses.  Having courts centralised in major centres like Shepparton and Benalla makes sense, I know, but I do think the legal profession lost something when we lost the small local courts like this one.

I hope you've enjoyed this tour of Numurkah.  I wonder where my search for work will take me next?


  1. Your post prompted me to look up other pics from Numurkah -- it looks like many Virginia towns. Just lovely. Fingers crossed on your interview!

    1. Many thanks Anne! I'd never really imagined towns in the Goulburn Valley as similar to towns in Va - interesting perspective!