Information on this page is from:
Tthe Australian Government Department of Environment and Heritage
Burke Museum, Loch St, Beechworth, Victoria.
The Burke Museum was erected in 1857 by the Young Men's Association as a lecture hall and reading room. It was later known as the Athenaeum Hall and in 1859 became the Beechworth Public Library. In 1863 the Museum was added to the original building and there were further additions in 1874. The facade of the single storey rendered brick structure has simply moulded openings, stylised Doric pilarteus and a central entrance expressed by a projecting vestibule.
Burke and Wills Clump, Murray Valley Hwy, Lake Boga, Victoria.
The site was described by Ludwig Becker as a 'belt of timber between Lake Tatchiwap and Lake Boga'. The actual location would be difficult to ascertain from this small reference. It has been noted by Tipping, in her annotation to Becker's diary, that 'the party camped between two lakes south of Swan Hill opposite the 14-mile post on the Murray Valley Highway. Locally the spot is known as the Burke and Wills Clump'. Becker's journal entry appears to be the only primary written reference to camp 14 on the Burke and Wills trail. Tipping's assertion of the location is based upon this site already having been identified by locals as the Burke and Wills Clump, while the entry in Becker's diary is vague and contains no location specific information. Even the names of the trees (box trees) are not mentioned. Therefore, the actual association of this location with the Burke and Wills expedition may be tenuous. The association of the place with the ill-fated explorers is based upon local folklore. Long-time residents of Lake Boga and district have provided oral testimony as to the location of the place. This oral testimony, a few generations removed, may go as far back as the 19th Century, possibly even extending back to eyewitnesses. Becker's diary noted that large numbers of local people came to see them at the site, so the location would have been well known to past generations. The Swan Hill Guardian (16/02/1996) noted that locals had long known this area as the Burke and Wills Clump. While the authenticity of this location cannot be proven conclusively, there is a strong community attachment to it as a place of great importance. A possible lack of authenticity does not necessarily exclude it from being significant. The envelopment of the site in an almost legendary aspect of Australia's past is an important element of the region's history. The term "Burke and Wills Clump" refers to a clump of native box trees growing beside the Murray Valley Highway 4 km south of the Township of Lake Boga. Originally the trees were numerous, but regular flooding in the immediate vicinity and inadvertent land clearance have resulted in a reduction in the number of trees to 8, with two dead stumps. The wider area, which served as a campsite for such a large band of travellers and their livestock, could potentially contain evidence of the expedition's presence. Widespread flooding in the area may have irreversibly disturbed or removed any archaeological deposits, although no formal archaeological assessment of the site has occurred. The area has, since the early 1990s, been curated and cared for by local community members, who formed the "Burke and Wills Clump Project Sub-committee". The Sub-committee has been involved in maintaining the trees, revegetating the area and creating an interpretive roadside stop with a commemorative cairn and brass plaque. The site has been fenced, and plans are in place for a service road to be installed. The level of community support for the sub-committee's projects is notable, with written and practical support being offered by various community organisations and government bodies. Fund raising activities to support their work have been well patronised. There may be Indigenous heritage values present in this place. 2.5km north of the site, at Lake Boga, was the Moravian Aboriginal Mission. Local Aboriginal people also believe that the Lake Boga area was an important meeting place in pre-contact times. While its associations with the explorers are not conclusive, the Burke and Wills Clump is certainly a rare tangible landmark of their celebrated exploits. The fact that the Innamincka site, in one of the remotest parts of the country, attracts thousands of visitors per year is testament to the widespread significance of the Burke and Wills narrative to the wider Australian community. The Burke and Wills Clump at Lake Boga is another such, if less dramatic, physical link with that narrative.
Burke and Wills Memorial Obelisk, Wills St, Castlemaine, Victoria.
The Castlemaine Burke and Wills memorial obelisk is of outstanding historical significance as the first monument erected in Victoria to honour the achievements of Burke and Wills. The State's memorial, a heroic sculpture, was not completed until April 1865. Built of local granite, and positioned on a prominent hill overlooking the town, the obelisk mirrors the strength of colonial Victorians' feelings at the time of the tragic events. The obelisk also complements a large range of contemporary civic and commercial buildings in the town, including the Market Building. The obelisk has architectural importance as a rare and large civic monument of this architectural form which derives from the renaissance use of obelisks standing on a moulded block base. The location of the obelisk on a prominent hill also follows renaissance traditions of their use as progressional markers in a city landscape. This place is entered in the Victorian Heritage Register and the above statement is provided by Heritage Victoria. The Australian Heritage Commission recognises the standards of historic assessment of Heritage Victoria and acknowledges that this place has national estate historic values. Enquiries concerning the assessment or conservation of this place should be directed in the first instance to Heritage Victoria. Commonwealth authorities and bodies should contact the Australian Heritage Commission directly if any Commonwealth action is proposed in relation to this place.
Burke and Wills Monument, Carpenter St, Bendigo, Victoria
The original site allocated to the Burke and Wills Monument was a bare knoll overlooking the whole cemetery, 46m x 69m x 92m pie shape which had not been allocated to any denomination group due to its rocky nature. Over 5,000 people crowded around the knoll for the laying of the foundation stone in 1862, two conifers remain from the original group sent by Mueller, Melbourne Botanical Gardens to develop the garden layout on the knoll. These two trees are listed as Significant Trees by City of Greater Bendigo. This was a favourite promenade site for the citizens of Sandhurst. Within this monumental site was built the first shelter (rotunda listed by the Historic Buildings Council). Presently the fenced in monument is all that remains. Underneath the foundations are the original objects buried in 1862 as per newspaper article of 21/8/1862.
Burkes Memorial, Innamincka, South Australia.
Blazed tree by explorer J McKinlay and later cemented stone monument with brass plaque. Probably erected by the Queensland Historical Society.
Dig Tree Reserve, Nappamerry Station via Thargomindah, Queensland.
The Dig Tree is a spreading Coolabah (Eucalyptus microtheca) growing by Cooper Creek, 6 km from the Nappa Merrie homestead. It is in a reserve owned by the Queensland Historical Society within the Nappa Merrie property own by Stanbroke Pastoral Company. The tree has a blaze carved by the Depot team waiting for Burke and Wills to return from the Gulf of Carpentaria in 1861. Although the Dig tree is identified the site of the Depot camp and the stockade that was built is not known. Near the tree is another Coolabah with a face in the likeness of Robert O' Hara Burke carved out of blaze. This tree is also important and within the Reserve area. The tree has been treated for pests and visited by Dr Ross Wiley, a tree surgeon with the Qld Department of Primary Industry. Board walks have been established around the base of the tree to prevent soil compaction. It is expected that one limb will drop soon. The blaze is gradually being overgrown. Approximately 35,000 tourists visit the site each year.
Grays Tree, Gidgealpa - Kudriemitchie Rd, Kudriemitchie Outstation via Innamincka, South Australia.
Located at Lake Massacre the tree is believed to mark the death and burial place of Charles Gray, first casualty of the Burke and Wills Expedition. This is generally accepted on the basis that there is no better explanation for the blaze cut into the tree with a steel axe and that there is no other marker for Gray's burial site. Although it is believed that the tree was marked further by John McKinley c 21 October 1861 that mark cannot be seen now, possibly because of the sand that has blown in and is beginning to cover the bottom of the tree. Attempts have been made to support the tree by bracing some of the branches. There are three star pickets in a triangle position and it is possible that this was an attempt to fence off and the protect the tree. This is a very remote place, generally inaccessible and basically inconspicuous.
List: Register of the National Estate
Legal Status: Registered (14/05/1991)
Place ID: 14228
Place File No: 3/00/260/0105
Wills Monument and Blazed Tree, Innamincka, South Australia.
Cement and steel pipe monument erected by South Australian Historical Society. Blazed tree with original markings still standing in Cooper Creek in 1972.
List: Register of the National Estate
Legal Status: Registered (14/05/1991)
Place File No: 3/00/260/0054