Nowra Local History
Nowra is a town located in the South Coast region of New South Wales, Australia. The town is situated on the Shoalhaven River, south of Sydney, and north of Batemans Bay. The name "Nowra" is an Aboriginal word meaning "black cockatoo".
The history of the region dates back thousands of years. The area was home to the Yuin people, who had a deep connection to the land and the river. They lived off the bountiful resources of the region, hunting and fishing along the river and in the surrounding bushland.
Europeans first arrived in the area in the late 1700s, and by the early 1800s the Shoalhaven River had become an important transportation route for goods and people. The town of Nowra was established in the mid-1800s, and quickly became a bustling centre of commerce. The town grew rapidly, and soon boasted a courthouse, post office, schools, hotels, and other important facilities.
During the 20th century, Nowra's economy shifted from agriculture to industry, particularly with the establishment of the HMAS Albatross naval air station. The base was built during World War II, and has been a significant employer in the region ever since. Today, Nowra is home to a diverse range of businesses, including tourism, retail, hospitality, and health services.
The region has a rich cultural heritage, and is home to a number of important heritage sites. The Nowra Court House, built in 1882, is a beautiful example of Victorian architecture, and is now used as a museum. The Meroogal House, built in 1885, is a well-preserved example of an affluent colonial home. The house is now owned by the National Trust, and is open to the public for tours.
The Nowra Bridge, which spans the Shoalhaven River, is another important heritage site. The bridge was originally built in 1881, and was the first iron bridge in New South Wales. The bridge was later replaced with a modern concrete structure, but the original pylons remain, and are now a popular tourist attraction.
The Shoalhaven River is also a significant feature of the region's history and culture. The river has long been a source of food, water, and transportation for the people of the area. Today, the river is a popular location for a range of recreational activities, including fishing, boating, and water skiing.
Overall, the history of the Nowra region is a fascinating and diverse story, encompassing Aboriginal culture, colonial settlement, and modern industry. The region's rich heritage is celebrated through a range of cultural events, including the Nowra Show, the Shoalhaven River Festival, and the Shoalhaven Coast Winter Wine Festival. Visitors to the region can explore the many heritage sites, sample the local cuisine, and enjoy the natural beauty of the river and the surrounding countryside.