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Dungeree (Co. Phillip) 32°39’S. 149°52’E., 18 km NW of Rylstone, on Lawsons Ck; Angl. C. 1907; mine (iron) 1950s-1970; PO 1874; Rom. Cath. C. (St Martin’s) b. 1906 by Patrick Callaghan, closed, dismantled and moved 1936 to Mudgee; sawmill (Hinton and Jerome) 1875; typhoid 1884; pop. 76 (1901), 61 (1911)1 .

Dungeree (Co. Phillip) see also Lue2 .

Old Tong Bong and Dungaree
(By H. Mow).
At that time the Mudgee railway line construction was in progress, and quite a large camp sprung up near Tong Bong Creek, six miles from Rylstone, just above where Mr. Martin Currie's station homestead now stands. At this spot Mr. E. A. Ellis had a hotel and a general store, and Mr. M. Norris had a butcher's shop. while Mr. Henry had a bakery. There were a number of boarding houses all doing good biz. This was the main sporting centre for several miles each side, the people coming to play cricket and other games. About a mile further up the road, Mr. Joe Sheriden a brother of Mr. Thomas Sheriden, snr., who now lives in Rylstone, kept a hotel for a time, later selling out to Mr. Robert Bailey. Mr. Bailey kept the hotel till it closed. He was a great man for pigeon shooting and other sport. A foot race for £10 aside was to take place on the sports ground near Ellis's hotel between Ted Ellis, the hotelkeeper's brother and Pat Marr, the son of a railway ganger. A large crowd turned up to witness the event, which resulted in a win for Marr. Amongst those present was Mr. Bailey, of the top pub, and Mr. W. McQuiggin, of Pinnacle Swamp, now living in Rylstone. Each being men of the trigger they arranged to hold a pigeon match at a later date for, I think, £10 aside. To celebrate the event they had a foot race for a small wager.

Each man pulled off the silk coat, which were worn in these days, removed their paper collars, rolled up their trousers and got on the mark. Joe Goddard, who after wards became a champion boxer, was starter. The race resulted in a win for Bailey. The pigeon match came off between Bailey and McQuiggin and resulted in Bailey just winning through one of McQuiggin's birds falling out of bounds. McQuiggan in these days took some beating. At this time the Mudgee district had some crack foot runners. Leo Casimir (Mudgee), Jim Weatherley (Ilford), Tom Duggan (Rylstone), and the 'navvies' champion, Paddy Hartigan. A match far £40 aside was arranged between Paddy Hartigan and Tom Duggan. This took place on the sports ground, near Ellis's Hotel, at Tong Bong. A large crowd turned up from all parts of the district; the railway works stopped for the day; stores and butcher's shops closed, but the pub had to keep open. There being no motor cars in these days, people came in gigs, buggies, spring carts, and large squads of men and the ladies wore bell top hats. ?p drays, drawn by fine big horses, carted a large number of the fair sex from the various railway settlements along the line, and most of the "toff" navvies wore swallow tailed coats with red sashes around their waist, the tails hanging down each side. In the gathering were many of Mudgee and Rylstone district's oldest residents, such as Thomas Owen, snr., the first keeper of the Globe Hotel, Rylstone, the late William Farrar, snr., father of Mr. J. W. Farrar, formerly of the Rylstone Hotel, Mr. Charlie Harper, Mudgee, Denny Doyle, and the late Henry Dewey, snr., of Growie. Tom Malone, the then champion Irish foot runner, was there, and won a silver cup presented by Mr. Ellis, the hotelkeeper. The foot race between Hartigan and Duggan resulted in an easy win for Hartigan. The navvies rushed him and carried him on their shoulders to the hotel. A good deal of money changed hands over the event, most of the betting being side wagers and people could be seen with hands full of notes and gold eager to get a wage on their favourite man. Mr. Fishbourne, the railway contractor, was present and had a wager on Hartigan. He handed his win over to a man who was sick at the brickyard near the site of Mr. Curries homestead. There was in this gathering that day, Austin Chapman a butcher from Dungaree, who is now Sir. Austin Chapman. He was then a popular young man, about 20 years of age. Many of the old hands about at that time will remember "Chapie," as he was called. The last time the writer remembers seeing him to speak to was at Bungendore, in 1896, he was then member for Braidwood. In a conversation I mentioned the name of Mr. Vincent Dowling, of Lue, and then I found out that the man I was talking to was the young butcher of Dungaree in the years gone bye, but at this time the member for Braidwood. If my memory serves me right he married a Miss O'Brien, a daughter of James O'Brien, of Bellevue Station, Braidwood. Further on towards Dungaree near Miskell farm was Crossbys big camp settlement. Mr. Andy O'Brien who died a few years ago at Cullen Bullen, kept a hotel on top of the hill, and a Mr. Harry Gibson kept a general store nearby, both doing good biz. At old Dungaree, where the Ryans now live, John Milligan kept the Dungaree Arms, and also a general store, whiie his daughter kept the post office. Mr. Pearson kept a bakery, and Mr. Austin Chapman had a butchers shop. Dan Gawthorn ran a blacksmith and wheelwright's shop. The Lue hotel was run by Mr. W. Warmsley, and later on by John Kurtz, snr. J. Dunnopp conducted a general store, and ran carts along the line. Mr. Varley also had a general store there. The Dunnlopp family were some years ago living at Lewis Ponds, near Orange. Many of these who took part in the work of building the Mudgee railway came from the gold fields of Wattle Flat, Turon, Hill End, and other places. The sons and daughters of many of these people have made good in many callings. Of late years the writer often came across some of them holding good positions in government departments, while others were in business on their own account. Mr. Ellis, who kept the hotel at Tong Bong, is Ellis, the big timber merchant, and was a native of Wattle Flat. His mother died at Wattle Flat about 14 years ago. Tom Duggan, the runner, is a brother of Mrs. Bonner, snr., of Narrango, and was a member of one of the oldest families in the Rylstone district. I believe Mr. Duggan now lives in the Moree district. All these sporting events took place just a quarter of a mile from Morton Main railway siding. How time changes things. The district around this spot is teeming with possibilities which will blossom forth if the right people come along to develop the mineral deposits that exist between there and Cudgegong. A light line of railway could, be laid from the Mudgee line, about 2 miles on the Lue side of Morton Main siding, to Iron Stone Creek for the iron deposits near Cudgegong — a distance of about 10 miles. It is only a matter of time and this will come to pass. The locality I write of will then wake up after its 40 years sleep3 .


17 August 1922
After leaving the station boundary, more farms are to be met with. Several of the owners are soldier settlers. In my opinion the areas are too small for them to make a success of their venture as the lands I saw was more pastoral than farming. Certainly by rabbiting and working off their farms they may make a living, but I do not think that is the idea of the Government in regard to the Soldiers. Either the land must be sufficient in area or else the benefit of the settler to the state will be very small. On one small farm I noticed what might be made a stepping stone to wealth, and that was the wonderful way the everlasting flowers bloomed, among them the white, so largely used in making the mourning wreaths of immortelles. All colors were present but the white was predominant and in Sydney there would be a big market for the flowers. On another block a couple of diggers were harvesting their first crop of maize, about three or four acres. The yield was very good. Having a yarn with them they reckoned they would pull through. They deserve to, for one said "we don't get as much comfort here as in Sydney but the missis and the bairns are doing all right and we have plenty of firewood for the carting." These are the settlers - men willing to do their best. A couple of miles from Lue there is a small village in which several families make their home, working and rabbiting for a living and do pretty well at it too. One good lady told me they paid no taxes. Fortunate people, one almost envies them their luck4 .


1 Simpson, Phillip. Historical Guide to New South Wales. North Melbourne, Vic: Australian Scholarly Publishing Pty Ltd, 2020, p. 244.
2 Simpson, Phillip. Historical Guide to New South Wales. North Melbourne, Vic: Australian Scholarly Publishing Pty Ltd, 2020, p. 244.
3 Mudgee Guardian and North-Western Representative. ‘Old Tong Bong and Dungaree’. 3 July 1924. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article155729477.
4 A CROSS COUNTRY TRIP (1922, August 17). Wellington Times (NSW : 1899 - 1954), p. 2. Retrieved April 15, 2023, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article137408220

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