New South Wales Australia
This Homestead was built in 1864 for Mr James Thompson, his wife and 9 children, with walls several feet thick and a history we are still unearthing.
What we do know is that the property has been in the same family since it was settled and that the local Ngarigo people used Cobbin Creek bordering the property as a travelling route.
A certain A.B. (Banjo) Patterson is known to be a friend and guest of Mr Thompson whose property at one time extended to some 7,000 acres. The property also boasts a functioning shearing shed and a cattlemen's hut that used to be located on the Snowy Plains.
The original Homestead is full of character. Originally with a shingle roof and dormer windows, the two rooms accessed via the front porch were rooms used to host travellers who would be welcome to stop and rest on long journeys on horseback. (Ironically these are now locked to our guests).
You will notice that the room on the left as you look out from the porch is made of different stone. That is because it was struck by lightning and destroyed. Tragically a German traveller who was staying in the room was killed and remains buried on the hill at the top of the property.
Many years later, the room was used as a kitchen (the original was outside and in a separate building). This room is known as Aunty Faith’s Kitchen as it is where she did a lot of cooking. Aunty Faith is now 96 years old.
The kitchen our guests use today was added in 1931, with the original sloping roof converted to a pitched roof decades later. It was updated again this century and recently had a new kitchen bench, stove, oven and plumbing installed.
Some of the timber to construct this kitchen was taken from the attic (also locked to guests pending restoration). The attic was originally accessed from stairs outside as it would have been used by workers on the property who would have been responsible for everything from shoeing the horses to carting water from the creek to cooking meals. It was not an option to pop down to the shops in those days!
The stairs to the attic would have been outside the Homestead where the bathroom is now. That was constructed in 1961 by the most recent owner himself doing a good deed for his new wife. You might scratch your head as we did when you enter the bathroom and wonder why the entrance slopes. Well, when the hole was knocked through the wall it was discovered that the wall was built on an 8-foot wide granite boulder, which seemed far too wide for a doorway and a project far too big to handle so concrete was laid over it.
At this point, we realise that many of the Homestead’s stories we can tell you now remain behind locked doors! You see, the locked room in the master bedroom is known as the Priests’ Room. It is where the priests travelling through the district stayed – like you, important guests and friends did not stay in the Travellers’ Rooms. The Priests’ Room is also where the women gave birth and the bodies were embalmed prior to burial.