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Jerrawa

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by Anne Dignam (subscribe)
I am a amateur freelance writer from Sydney. My passion is Aboriginal history, Australia and its unusual places. My aim is to share my knowledge to better your experience. Thank you
Published February 25th 2014
Jerrawa a forgotten railway town in country NSW
A true dose of the country at Jerrawa.

Between Gunning, Dalton and Yass is a very small country town that once was a thriving area due to the railway of pioneering days. It remains a pictureesque historical forgotten suburb.

Jerrawa railway sign and station hut is all that is left

If you are driving to Yass, Gunning or Dalton, I suggest you visit here on your journey. Kangaroos are in the area and some places have carriages and relics on their properties that you can see from the road.

Jerrawa Road signage

Jerrawa railway station was opened in 1875 to 1975. Today countrylink and goods trains are all that pass through this historic suburb. The remnants of the past are all that remain today. The small train masters overnight hut on the corner of Jerrawa Road is just a relic these days.

Jerrawa station overnight hut, hall and church - courtesy of google maps

[ADVERT]A lovely church and hall in its original condition stands alone on the hill opposite the station. In 1862 Jerrawa church was built on a property called "Greendale", owned by James Bush who kindly donated his land to the church. Since then the church is often referred to as Jerrawa or Jerrawa Creek. It is believed by locals that the church may have been built as early as 1856 and services were held by the Wesleyans a part of the Primitive Methodist church organisation.

Mr and Mrs John Waters were significant in the history of Jerrawa and were local residents migrating from England to the Gunning District in 1854. They were heavily involved in the church until its close around 1868, becoming associated with the Primitive Methodist Church at Jerrawa (Greendale). The cemetery lays to rest early pioneers and local residents. There is an old log fence on the western side of the church that was for tying up the horses while they attended mass. Mass is still held here today but only once a month.

Jerrawa Church

The new church had an iron roof, metal ceiling and stained windows accomodating 80 patrons. The foundation stone was laid by Mr Newman in 1862. Mr Bush, the previous owner of the now church land, carted the rock to build the church and the church was finally open in 1863 with morning and evening services. During 1872 to 1879, one of the preachers had been found intoxicated on numerous occasions, being dismissed from his position.

Jerrawa Sunday School and The Band of Hope hall

The hall was a school building built in 1876 and the Band of Hope provided a social life for Jerrawa, a yearly event in May bringing locals far and wide to celebrate and get together. They came by buggy, wagon, horseback and by foot. The Sunday school and library was in use until 1914.

Alcohol was a huge issue in this era and the Band of Hope was a pledge to God to abstain from alcohol. The Band of Hope wound up in 1939. The hall during its years has seen plenty, from drunken eras to church functions. In the late 1800's to early 1900's the locals will tell you stories of drunken behaviour and fights over tobacco and liquor with many stumbling, injured or passed out across the road to the local store which opened in 1898, becoming Jerrawa Post Office in 1912 until 1974. Transformed into an Old Wares shop in 1996 until 2001 and now is a private residence.

Jerrawa local store and Post Office now a private residence

A dose of the country which is currently extremely dry but a well preserved historical area.
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Why? Historical church and railway in the country
When: Anytime
Where: Jerrawa Road, Jerrawa
Cost: Free
Your Comment
Looks like a photographer's paradise! Very interesting article, Anne :)
by Fiona Anderson (score: 2|949) 1828 days ago
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