Marion (Adelaide) Historic Village

marion_skippingOur stay in South Australia was really in Marion, a suburb on the south side of Adelaide. David Jarman has so internalized its history that a neighbourhood walk is peppered with stories of the village whose colonial history dates back to 1838.

Early settlers were primarily English. Soon after the company of Colonel William Light, Boyle Travers Finiss (first Premier of South Australia), and Henry Nixon surveyed the region, they began to snap up allotments at a cost of six pounds each.

With its Mediterranean-like climate, the region soon flourished with market gardens and orchards. A brickworks supplied building materials. Settlers with all the skills needed for establishing a new community soon turned South Australia into a thriving colony.

As Adelaide grew and modern suburbs threatened to destroy Marion’s heritage, a group of volunteers formed the Marion Historic Village Project in cooperation with the City of Marion. Since 2006 they have identified 23 significant sites, including those in the photos.

Many Marion babies came into the world in the Birthing Cottage in this picture.
Many Marion babies came into the world in the Birthing Cottage in this picture.

David is one of the prime movers of the group. He is often called on to lead walking tours of the historical sites. For him, every street tells a story, which he is only too happy to share.

St. Ann's Catholic Church was built in 1859 and used as a school after 1865. Two bells were commissioned - one for this church, the other for the town of Gawler. The order was mixed up, but the bell was blessed and something had to be done with it. It was too large for the church so was hung in this gum tree, where it hangs to this day.
St. Ann's Catholic Church was built in 1859 and used as a school after 1865. Two bells were commissioned - one for this church, the other for the town of Gawler. The order was mixed up, but the bell was blessed and something had to be done with it. It was too large for the church so was hung in this gum tree, where it hangs to this day.
Little Marion peers into a well here. The spider web is still intact, which means no child has fallen in.
Little Marion peers into a well here. The spider web is still intact, which means no child has fallen in.
The Cobb and Co. coach used to stop at the Marion Inn on its way south
The Cobb and Co. coach used to stop at the Marion Inn on its way south
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