The Shire of Harvey is in the South West of Western Australia and includes some of the best agricultural land in the state.
Harvey takes its name from the Harvey River, and was originally known as Korejikup.
The origins of its name are somewhat obscure. Respected historian AC Staples wrote in his book, They made their destiny, history of settlement, Shire of Harvey, 1829 – 1929, p. 23:
‘It is quite reasonable to suggest that [Governor James] Stirling selected the name and that the person so honoured was one whom Stirling remembered with great respect. Such a person was the commanding officer of West Indian Station of the Royal Navy under whom Stirling served while in charge of the HMS Brazen in 1817. That commanding officer became Admiral Sir John Harvey.’
‘It is unnecessary to discuss the claims of the mythical Major Harvey who was said to have ridden along the river. That journey was first made by Henty and Peel in 1835, two years after the publication of the map bearing the name Harvey.’
The original local government centre was Brunswick Junction and is now Harvey. The Shire encompasses the towns of Harvey, Wokalup, Benger, Yarloop, Myalup, Brunswick, Binningup, Roelands (Collie River Siding), Cookernup and the rapidly expanding town of Australind.
The Harvey district has a rich history of settlement and land usage. Wide-ranging themes include:
- Early settlement
- Timber industry
- Dairy farming and milk processing
- Citrus growing
- Irrigation from weirs
- Soldier settlement
- World War II Internment Camp
- Roelands Mission
Many old timber mill towns no longer exist. As the wood was cut from the area, settlements disappeared. Place names from the past include Mornington, Worsley, Hoffman (2 sites), Waterous, Allanson and Treesdale.
Others to disappear were railway sidings such as Beela, Collie Siding and Warrawarrup.
Small settlements established by the Forestry Department for fire control purposes were Tallanalla, Asquith and Myalup but as fire detection techniques and means of communication improved, these settlements were abandoned.
Boundaries for Harvey Shire have changed over time; Australind was ceded to Bunbury in 1921 and returned in 1950 and the Shire of Collie was enlarged in 1970 with ceded land from Harvey Shire.
- Harvey District Oral History Group started in 1989, with a small band of volunteers.
- The aim was to gather history, mainly in the audio tape medium, making it available to the public through local libraries.
- The aim has remained the same but we now seek to attract a wider audience via the internet.
- Harvey History Online in conjunction with Harvey Visitor Centre produced two books which can be purchased from the Harvey Visitor Centre and Australind Timeless Wares (Henton Cottage). They are:
Heritage within the Harvey Shire
Reflections within the Harvey Shire
- Oral Histories of more than 120 interviews.
- Documents are donated and gathered from all sources and copied. Originals are returned to the family.
- Photographs are copied digitally and the originals returned to the owner. We have over 1000 photos in the collection.
- Maps of the area from early settlement.
Availability to the Public
Oral Histories – an index of the collection is available online.
Copyright permitting, the interviews can be purchased in CD or USB format.
Copyright permitting, Battye Library has copies of the interviews.
Synopses of interviews are available for a small fee to cover costs. These can be sent by email or posted.
Documents – copies of material from the collection are available to the public, copyright permitting, with costs of copying and postage borne by the purchaser.
Photographs – can be emailed, posted or put onto a CD or USB.
Maps – are available on request.
Edited oral histories are aired in segments on Harvey Community Radio in ‘Sounds Like Harvey’. Our thanks to Melva Mitchell for her ongoing work of editing and broadcasting the group’s interviews.
- Oral History interviews: $15 per CD
- Photographs: $7.50 each, $25 for 4
- Headstone Photos: as per photos
How to Purchase
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