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Published December 5th 2018
Something to do on Yorke
One of the largest towns on the Yorke Peninsula, Ardrossan offers a variety of things for people to do. From beaches to playgrounds, swimming to fishing, at Ardrossan and surrounding towns, you will find a myriad of activities for people of all ages.
One of the more hidden things is the Ardrossan Museum.
Until the era of the depression, Ardrossan was the site of the factories that manufactured the famous stump jump plough. The museum is located in buildings associated with that factory – the powerhouse. For a modest cost ($5 for adults and $2 for children), visitors can go in and have a look at many wonders of a bygone age.
This is a history museum. It is not huge, but it is certainly large enough. And it is fascinating.
There are a number of rooms. One is dedicated to the sperm whales washed up in the area in 2014. It is interesting if only for the fact the bodies were simply buried where they fell. And, apparently, the odour was pungent.
There is a room dedicated to the wreck of the Zanoni, which sank on its maiden voyage and was not rediscovered for over a hundred years. It is now a protected site and is the most intact vessel of its era in South Australian waters.
Then there is a large room filled with all manner of artefacts from times past. From things as simple as manual typewriters and tube radios to clothing and kitchen wares. There is even a wheelchair and a birthing table!
The next room contains the stump jump plough and a lot of photos and blueprints and paperwork. Everything about this amazing device can be found and seen. And finally, there is a room filled with machinery, including a fascinating horse-drawn fire cart.
Outside are more examples of machinery and an old Harbourmaster's Office done as a General Store (closed when I went through).
One thing that really sets this place apart is the labelling. Many items are clearly labelled, with the result that you know what you are looking at. And, if not, the volunteers (from the Ardrossan branch of the National Trust of SA) will be more than happy to help. The ones I encountered were cheerful chatty and very helpful.
And then, once it is all over, there are souvenirs to look at, and – as it doubles as the Visitor Centre – brochures to help you find other things to do in the area.
I do understand that history museums are not for everyone, but I do like them, and this is certainly one of the better smaller museums I have come across. I spent a couple of hours looking around at everything, taking photos, reading blueprints and other bits and pieces and just marvelling at everything on display.