Aaron Gilligan and Michael RuLing

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The following wiki contains resources and information about the history of the township of Ross during the period of the European settlement of Tasmania. These resources can be adapted for use across all secondary levels. The purpose of this wiki is not to provide detailed unit or lesson plans, yet it is to provide a range of resources from which such plans can be constructed.
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Overview of Ross


  • In the following short video, local residents discuss the significance of Ross, as well as key features of the town.










Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMxA0mtbOrA
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Map of buildings or sites listed on the Register of the National Estate, Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ross_Tasmania_Heritage_Map.png
  • The following link to The companion to Tasmanian history website contains a brief overview of Ross. It links the supply of sandstone to the numerous Georgian-style structures which were erected in Ross.
http://www.utas.edu.au/library/companion_to_tasmanian_history/R/Ross.htm

  • The Ross visitor information website contains a list of ‘attractions’. Students may view this website at the commencement of a study of Ross in order to obtain a basic introduction to the key features of the township. A basic overview of the history of Ross can be accessed via the ‘history’ tab. The link can be accessed below.
http://www.visitross.com.au/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=38&Itemid=59

  • Students may attempt to identify the structures listed on the visitors website as they navigate around the town (using Google maps street view, see widget below in 'Ross Bridge' section). The above map could be used as a guide for such an exercise.
    Ross Female Convict Station (AKA Female Factory)

  • The following link provides information on the history and purpose of female factories (including the Ross female factory) in Tasmania.
http://www.utas.edu.au/library/companion_to_tasmanian_history/F/Female%20factories.htm

  • The following link provides a general overview of the history of the female convict station in Ross. It also contains interesting accounts of the inner workings of the station and of views of individual female convicts. Students will gain insight into the perceptions and values which were held by the residents of Ross during this era.
http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/index.aspx?base=2778

  • Page 40-45 of this document contains a timeline of the female convict station historic site.


  • This plan (1848) shows the alterations necessary to convert the probation station into the female factory.

Female_Convict_Station,_Plan.jpg
Source: http://catalogue.statelibrary.tas.gov.au/item/?q=ross+female+factory+plan&i=3&id=PWD266-1-1695

  • This document contains images of the remains of the assistant superintendent's and overseer's cottages and of the surrounding area where the female factory was once located.

Above source adapted from
Ross: Sheep Padock. (2008). Retrieved September 20, 2011From http://monissaw.livejournal.com/316016.html





  • The following image shows a scale model of the female factory taken from within the exhibition at the overseer’s cottage.
Female_factor,_Model.jpg
Source: http://monissaw.livejournal.com/316016.html


  • The following paper discusses the illicit barter networks which existed within the Ross female factory.
http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/827866.pdf?acceptTC=true


  • Chapter 6 (p.104-117) of the following book edited by B. Bender and M. Winer (2001) contains an in-depth discussion on the relationship between the hierarchical structure and the physical structure of the female factory. Students can learn how assumptions regarding how people once lived can be made from archeological remains.
http://books.google.com.au/books?id=hUmvNzw4eBgC&pg=PA104&dq=ross+female+factory&hl=en&ei=3S6ATraUJ4GbiQf14zTDg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CEMQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=ross%20female%20factory&f=false





Ross Bridge

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Sketch of the original wooden bridge at Ross, by Thomas Bock. Source: http://catalogue.statelibrary.tas.gov.au/item/?q=ross+bridge&format=Images&i=31&id=PH30-1-362
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Ross Bridge, Dodd, Thomas (1771-1850) Source: http://catalogue.statelibrary.tas.gov.au/item/?q=ross+bridge&format=Images&i=15&id=95708
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Ross Bridge carvings. Source: http://tasmaniantimes.com/images/uploads/kimpeartIMG_0072_2_thumb_thumb.jpg

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Ross Bridge, present day (Sep, 2011). Image taken by Aaron Gilligan











  • This document contains a scanned section of a book entitled Ross… on the Argyle Plains which relates to the Ross Bridge. Issues surrounding its construction, and claims of corruption, theft and mismanagement are discussed. This text contains relatively simple languages and is easy to read. Students will learn about social and political issues during the time of construction.


  • This brief biography discusses the character and achievements of Daniel Herbert, who was the supervising stonemason who is credited for much of the fine craftsmanship of Ross Bridge.

Above source adapted from:
Maxwell-Stewart, H. (1971). Herbert, Daniel (1802-1868), Retrieved from http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/herbert-daniel-12979

  • Page three to seven of the following newspaper article is taken from The Hobart Town Courier (Tas. : 1827 - 1839), Friday 28 October 1836, page 2, 3. It contains an account of the opening of the bridge and reports on the atmosphere and feeling which surrounded the occasion. Horne Esq. then proceeds to address the crowds.
http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/printArticlePdf/4174285/4?print=n.

  • Below is a link to an article taken from The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), Saturday 24 October 1936, page 11. The article celebrates the 100th anniversary of the opening of Ross Bridge.
http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/printArticlePdf/30118786/3?print=n


Horton College
  • In 1850, Captain Samuel Horton offered 20 acres and £1350 to the Wesleyan Church for the establishment of a boys college. In 1852 the foundation stone of Horton College was laid and construction was completed in 1852. Due to a decrease in enrollments, Horton College was closed in the 1890s, and demolished in 1920.
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the view of Horton College http://www.slv.vic.gov.au/pictoria/a/0/8/doc/a08220.shtml
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the view of Horton College http://www.somercotes.com/history/history_horton_col.html


  • This photo shows the multi-storied Horton College built of red brick with dressings and trimmings of carved sandstone. The college was not opened until 1855 due to a delay caused by the discovery of gold in Victoria. In the first eight years there were four headmasters at Horton College.

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Present day remains of Horton College http://monissaw.livejournal.com/346770.html

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the local museum of Horton College http://monissaw.livejournal.com/346770.html

  • This link leads to an advertisement for Horton College.
http://catalogue.statelibrary.tas.gov.au/item/?id=PH10-1-38

  • This link contains an article about the history of Horton College and information about tuition fees.
http://eprints.utas.edu.au/6188/1/scrapbook_page42.pdf