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Welcome Stranger Obelisk
Welcome Stranger Obelisk

Photographs supplied by Kent Watson

An obelisk of granite, surrounded by granite columns and wrought iron panels, marks the spot where the Welcome Stranger nugget was discovered by John Deason and Richard Oates in 1869. The Welcome Stranger nugget weighed 2316 troy ounces (about 72 kg) and at the time of discovery was the largest known gold nugget in the world, measuring 60 by 45 by 19 centimetres. 

The memorial is located one and a quarter miles south-west of Moliagul in forest country. About a quarter mile south-west of the monument is a small cleared paddock where John Deason lived.

The 'Welcome Stranger' was found on 5 February 1869 by Cornish miner John Deason, who was working in Bulldog Gully, near Moliagul in central Victoria. While searching around the roots of a tree he discovered, 3 cm below the surface, a gold nugget. He concealed his find until dark, then with his partner, Richard Oates, dug it out. They then held a party during which they revealed their find to the guests.

The  'Welcome Stranger', then the world's largest-known gold nugget, was taken to Dunolly where it had to be broken on an anvil before it could fit on the bank's scales. It was worth nearly 10,000 pounds - around $3-4 million in today's money.

Location

Address:Welcome Stranger Road, 2 kilometres south-east of town, Moliagul, 3472
State:VIC
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -36.761601
Long: 143.652373
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Technology
Sub-Theme:Industry
Actual Event STart Date:05-February-1869
Actual Event End Date:05-February-1869
Monument Manufacturer:Mines Department

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Friday 19th November, 1897
Front Inscription

  WELCOME STRANGER
          NUGGET

On This Spot The Largest Nugget Of Gold
In The World Was Discovered
On The 5th February 1869  By
    JOHN DEASON And
       RICHARD OATES.
Weight 2316 oz, Value £9553
Erected by the Mines Department 1897
      HENRY FOSTER
     Minister of Mines,
D.J. DUGGAN M.L.A.
    Member for Dunolly

Source: MA,RUMV,VMR, RHSV
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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