Major Thomas Mitchell ExpeditionPrint Page Print this page

The cairn commemorates the expedition of Major Thomas Mitchell who passed through the area in 1836. 

Sir Thomas Livingstone Mitchell (1792 – 1855), surveyor and explorer of south-eastern Australia , was born at Grangemouth in Stirlingshire, Scotland. In 1827 he took up an appointment as Assistant Surveyor General of New South Wales. The following year he became Surveyor General and remained in this position until his death. Mitchell was knighted in 1839 for his contribution to the surveying of Australia. 

On his third expedition in 1836, Mitchell travelled to where the Lachlan, Murrumbidgee and Darling Rivers joined the Murray River in what is now Victoria. He mapped the western part of Victoria and named the Grampian Mountains, on the other side of which he found rich grazing land. The expedition travelled south west, and crossed mountains and rivers that no white people had ever seen. They reached the Glenelg River and rowed down to the sea at Portland Bay. Here Mitchell was surprised to find the Henty brothers and a thriving community that had been settled there since 1834. 

A carnival to celebrate the unveiling of the Major Mitchell cairn at Miga Lake was held last Wednesday afternoon. Included in the programmne was a tennis tournament, fishing competition and athletic sports. The unveiling ceremony was interesting and was performed by Cr. A. F. Carracher, president of the Kowree Shire. Other speakers were Mr. McNab (representing the Historical Society), Mr. T. H. Scholfield, M.H.R., Cr. Ryan (who presided). Mr. H. G. Hill, shire secretary and ex-Cr. F.J Forster. The cairn consists of three tiers of pipes, cemented and set in a concrete base. It stands on the Miga Lake-Wombelano road opposite the Public Hall. One of the speakers at the unveiling sail that in conversation with one of the soldier settlers that day reference was made to the fact that Major Mitchell was the first white man to land at Miga Lake. The settler, who has heen hard hit by the low prices, said, "I wish to goodness he had never discovered it."
The Horsham Times (VIC), 21 March 1933. 

At the unveiling of the Bulla memorial for Hume and Hovell, Charles Daley the Secretary of the Victorian Historical Society suggested that the idea be extended to other explorers and a committee was formed to mark out the routes of Charles Sturt, Thomas Mitchell, Angus McMillan, and Count Paul de Strzelecki.

Thirty-five cairns or tablets to Mitchell were erected at Nyah West, Swan Hill, Cohuna, Mount Pyramid, Fernihurst, Wedderburn, Kanya, Stawell, Mount William, Horsham, Mount Arapiles, Miga Lake, Harrow, Coleraine, Casterton, Dartmoor, Isle of Bags, Portland, Mount Rouse, Mount Napier, Hamilton, Lake Repose, Dunkeld, Middle Creek, Mount Greenock, Mitchellstown, Nagambie, Castlemaine, Expedition Pass, Kyneton, Benalla, Wangaratta, Chiltern, Gooramadda and a public park at Natimuk (Major Mitchell Park, Mount Arapiles, Natimuk).



Address:Nhill - Harrow Road, Opposite Hall, Miga Lake, 3409
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -36.940833
Long: 141.630833
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Landscape


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Wednesday 15th March, 1933
Source: MA,MED
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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