History enthusiasts have toured the site of the Tweed’s first post office, to celebrate International Archaeology Day.
Bev Fairley, a direct descendant of Tweed settlers Joshua and Gertrude Bray, led a walking tour of their historic property Kynnumboon near Murwillumbah, the site of the first post office in the Tweed.
The tour, on Saturday 15 October, coincided with the start of the Museum’s display Sorted! 150 years of Tweed Mail, which explores the evolution of postal services throughout Tweed Shire.
It examines several themes, including the beginning of postal services in the Tweed.
Joshua Bray arrived on the Tweed in the early 1860s and established his home, Kynnumboon, on the outskirts of Murwillumbah. He was joined by his new wife, Rosalie Gertrude (nee Nixon), soon after and they established the Tweed’s first official post office in 1866.
Joshua was appointed Postmaster and Gertrude performed the role of Postmistress, and a section of their cottage’s verandah was closed in to accommodate what was known as Wollumben Post Office.
The mail slot cut into the cottage wall and the Wollumben Post Office stamp are some of the highlights of the Sorted! display.
It also includes an intriguingly small pencil sketch illustrating the story of Aboriginal man Long Bob, who carried the mail from Kynnumboon to Ballina before the direct mail route from the Tweed to Casino was established.
“Sorted! reveals snippets of the history of postal services through select objects relating to town and village post offices across the shire, from the Museum and private collections,” Tweed Regional Museum’s Acting Director, Kate Gahan, said.
“The display explores the development of different postal services over time and the technology and processes adopted to ensure the speed and security of mail.
“Other display gems include photographs of the present day Murwillumbah Post Office when newly completed in 1955,” she said.
“Strikingly modern in appearance, the first images of the new post office show it contrasted significantly with the town’s federation and inter-war era shops and facades.”
Ms Gahan said the new post office building represented the first significant upgrade of postal services in the town for many decades.
Sorted! is on display at the Museum until early February 2017. For more information, visit museum.tweed.nsw.gov.au or contact the Museum on (02) 6670 2493.
The Museum is located on Queensland Road and is open Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm.