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Traralgon

Traralgon is a town located in the east of the Latrobe Valley in the Gippsland region of Victoria, Australia.

Details

  • Area:56.282 km2
  • Elevation:44 m
  • Population:27,000
  • Local Government Area:Latrobe City Council

Description

Traralgon is a town located in the east of the Latrobe Valley in the Gippsland region of Victoria, Australia. The urban population of Traralgon at the 2016 census was 25,485. It is the largest and fastest growing city in the greater Latrobe Valley area, which has a population of 74,170 at June 2016 and is administered by the City of Latrobe. # History Traralgon is situated on the traditional lands of the Indigenous Gunai/Kurnai nation, which includes the lands of the Braiakaulung clan of Bunjil Kraura, who lived to the north of Latrobe River (called Durt'yowan in Gunai language), as well as the clan of Woollum-Woollum, who lived on the hills to the south of the river and were more affiliated with the Brataualung people.Gunai/Kurnai people manufactured stone tools, as long as 5,000 years ago, from silcrete quarries in the Haunted Hills, west of Morwell. Scarred trees and rock sites with axe-grinding grooves are also found in the local area. The Gippsland region was inhabited by the Gunai/Kurnai people for a period in excess of 20,000 years, according to evidence of occupation found at the New Guinea II cave near Buchan, Victoria. In other parts of Victoria evidence of Indigenous occupation has been found for many more thousands of years. ## Expeditions The first non-Indigenous visitors to the area of Traralgon included the party of Count Pawel Strzelecki on their journey from the Snowy Mountains in April 1840, after Strzelecki had named Australia's highest peak as Mount Kosciuszko. Charley Tarra, a Burra Burra man from the NSW town of Taralga, was the Indigenous guide for the party, which included Strzelecki; the New South Wales men James MacArthur and James Riley; and their servants, Irish convict James Nolan and African convict John Rent.The party crossed Latrobe River and travelled along Traralgon Creek to a heavily forested area, where the party was forced to abandon their horses and equipment. The location was commemorated by monument at Traralgon Creek, Koornalla, erected in 1927. The team's rations were reduced to a slice of bacon and a biscuit per day, but Tarra hunted for animals to end their hunger. They traversed the headwaters of Morwell River, before making a difficult journey across the heavily forested mountain range. They reached Anderson's run in Western Port in May 1840, then walked to Melbourne.To honour the men, the mountain range was named the Strzelecki Ranges, part of the forest was named Tarra Valley, later merged into Tarra-Bulga National Park, and the river running from the valley to Port Albert was named Tarra River. Strzelecki named the region as Gipps' Land, later becoming Gippsland, in honour of his sponsor NSW Governor George Gipps.In June 1840, a party consisting of Tarra, Riley, John Rutledge and Shoalhaven Indigenous man John Pigeon went on a second expedition to retrieve the lost horses and managed to retrieved one, by travelling through the mountains of West Gippsland, across a path that would roughly trace the present-day Princes Highway. A third expedition was made from Port Albert to Latrobe Valley in March 1841 that included William Brodribb, Alexander Kinghorne, Norman McLeod and Kirsopp with Tarra as their guide. In June 1841, a fourth expedition was made along the same route by William's brother Albert Brodribb, pastoralist Edward Hobson, Dr Edward Barker and four Boon wurrung men. ## Pastoral leases The area around Traralgon was first settled by Europeans in the 1840s. Due to the Latrobe Valley having relatively high rainfall, the land is very fertile, and farming was quickly established. As with much of central and western Gippsland, this was mainly dairy farming. In the Gippsland region between 1840 and 1860, the population of settlers grew from a few to 2,000 and the recorded Gunai population fell from 2,000 to a handful.The first Europeans to take land in Traralgon were the brothers Dr Edmund Hobson and Edward Hobson who purchased 19,000 acre pastoral lease in 1844, which they called Traralgon. In April 1844, Edward to a large mob of cattle out from their station near Arthur's Seat to Traralgon arriving two months later. Albert Brodribb and William Bennett started Hazelwood Station in 1844 and the following year James Rintoul had taken a run in Loy Yang and Thomas Gorringe had taken up a run at Maryvale. ## Township established The township was established in the early 1860s, the first Post Office opening on 1 January 1861.In 1877 the railway line from Melbourne was completed with a railway station at Traralgon giving the town a major economic boost. Traralgon was part of the area administered by the Rosedale Roads Board, before the Shire of Traralgon was established in 1879. In the latter part of the 19th century the Shire grew strongly. It was not until the 1930s however that Traralgon began to move away from a farming based economy. In 1936 Australian Paper Manufacturers established a paper mill at Maryvale, around 8 kilometres (5 mi) from Traralgon. Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh visited on 3 March 1954. The president of the Shire of Traralgon, Cr Clem Little met and welcomed the Queen, who was flown by the Royal Australian Air Force from Sale. She returned to Melbourne by train.In 1960 Traralgon's most famous son Sir Macfarlane Burnet jointly won the Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine. In 1961 Traralgon formed its own borough, the Borough of Traralgon following a decade of lobbying to separate the urban areas of Traralgon from the Shire. Traralgon was proclaimed a city in 1964. The old town hall and mechanics institute were demolished in 1973.Further development resulted from the expansion of the power generation industry following World War II, particularly through the now defunct State Electricity Commission of Victoria. This included large expansions at Yallourn and Hazelwood Power Stations and the construction of the massive Loy Yang Power Station in the 1970s and 1980s. The first Loy Yang power station was completed in 1985. An Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) information processing centre was established in the early 1990s, at the time employing around 400 people. The City of Traralgon and Shire of Traralgon continued a separate existence until they were amalgamated into the Shire of Latrobe in 1994. Completion of the Loy Yang power stations, extensive voluntary departures from the electricity industry and privatisation of the Victorian electricity industry in the early 1990s had devastating effects on the economy of the Latrobe Valley. Traralgon, with a more diversified economy, suffered to a lesser extent than the neighbouring towns of Morwell and Moe both of which relied almost exclusively on the power stations for their livelihood. Traralgon grew strongly in the mid 2000s, with a figure of 2.7% making it the largest and fastest growing city in the Latrobe Valley. ## Heritage s Traralgon contains a number of heritage-listed sites, including: 161-165 Franklin Street: Traralgon Post Office and Court House Queens Parade: Traralgon Engine Shed and Turntable Victory Park, Mill Street: Azarole Hawthorn Tree # Weather Traralgon experiences an oceanic climate (Köppen climate classification Cfb). Nights in Traralgon are about 2 °C colder than in Melbourne From 9 June 2021 Traralgon was one of the hardest-hit towns with 200 homes evacuated when an east coast low weather system caused widespread flash flooding across Gippsland. # Things to do

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