Bellarine Historical Society Inc

...preserving the history of the Bellarine Peninsula

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Curlewis

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Today, Curlewis is probably best known for its Golf Course, however there was a little more to the settlement in the 19th century.

In 1850, when the Catholics established a school there, the area was known as Point Henry, however it was renamed Curlewis after a local pioneer family (George Campbell Curlewis was a squatter and purchased land here in 1845). The Catholic School closed at the end of 1873 after refusing to lease the school to the new Education Department. A new school, Curlewis State School No. 1559 was built on the corner of Bawtree Road and opened in 1875, however low attendances forced its closure in 1880. In the meantime the Catholic School re-opened with much larger attendances - an indication of the size of the Catholic community in the area.

One of the parishioners was Anthony Devine - the children held picnics on his property Derry Hall.

Derry Hall

Derry Hall - where Anthony Devine lived.
[Photograph # 517 : The Bellarine Historical Society photograph collection]

Initially, a timber church stood next to the school on the Portarlington Road, however it was replaced by a Gothic style bluestone and brick structure - St. Francix Xavier Church is a noticeable landmark today in a seemingly low populated area.

Another Curlewis landmark which has long since disappeared was Christies Union Hotel which was located on the north side of the Portarlington Road between Christies and Bawtree Roads.

Hermsley Homestead

Hermsley Homestead, Hermsley Road, Curlewis - aerial view.
[Photograph # 918 : The Bellarine Historical Society photograph collection]

Septimus Lord Curlewis, stepbrother and trustee for the late George Campbell Curlewis, built Hermsley.1 Septimus looked after the family and property until George's sons were old enough to take over in 1866. By the 1880s the Curlewises seemed to have run into financial difficulties as the property was offered in mortgagees sales.1

References :

  1. Ian Wynd, Balla-wein : A history of the Shire of Bellarine, Shire of Bellarine, Drysdale, 1988, pp. 18, 21, 101-102, 172.

Record Sources for Curlewis

  • Photographs : Bellarine Historical Society; Geelong Historical Records Centre; various private collections.
  • Maps & Plans : Bellarine Historical Society; Geelong Historical Records Centre.
  • Newspapers : Geelong Advertiser Indexes - Bellarine Historical Society & Geelong Historical Records Centre; Geelong Advertiser on microfilm - Geelong Historical Records Centre; various local newspapers - Bellarine Historical Society.
  • Miscellaneous Documents & Advertisements : Bellarine Historical Society; Geelong Historical Records Centre; various private collections.
  • Bellarine Shire Council Records : Geelong Historical Records Centre.
  • More recent Council Records : City of Greater Geelong.
  • Cemetery Records : (Drysdale Cemetery) Bellarine Historical Society; Geelong Historical Records Centre.
  • Land Records : Registrar of Titles, Melbourne; Bellarine Historical Society; Geelong Historical Records Centre.

Bibliography

Brownhill, Geo. H. Illustrated Guide to Geelong And District, Facsimile edn., Deakin University Press, Geelong, 1990.

Campbell, A. J. Tourist Guide to Geelong and Southern Watering Places, Henry Thacker, Geelong, 1893.

Richardson, John. The Lady Squatters : Miss Anne Drysdale and Miss Caroline Elizabeth Newcomb : 'Boronggoop' and 'Coriyule', Bellarine Rural City Council, Drysdale, 1986.

Wynd, Ian. Balla-wein : A history of the Shire of Bellarine, Shire of Bellarine, Drysdale, 1988.

Wynd, Ian. Geelong The Pivot : A Short History of Geelong and District, Cypress Books, Mont Albert North, 1971.


Last Updated on Sunday, 10 May 2009 14:27  

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