Pioneers of the Wool IndustryPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by John Huth

The Jondaryan Woolshed and 12 acres of land commemorate the pioneers of the wool industry. 

A memorial to Lawrie & Lindall Rutledge, donors of the Woolshed, is located at the site. 

The iconic, heritage-listed Woolshed that stands on the grounds today commenced construction in 1859. Approximately 5,000 sheets of corrugated galvanised iron were used to roof the vast shed, and it was constructed out of hand-hewn Ironbark timber, with whole trees being used to support the structure. It was completed in 1861, and the first shearing was carried out that year.

The Woolshed was designed by James Charles White who was the manager of Jondaryan Station. He also designed St Anne’s Church and various station buildings. The timber slab building was considered the finest in its time and cost £5,000 to complete. At almost 300 feet (90 metres) in length, it boasted 52 shearing stands and could hold 3,000 sheep under cover. 

For the residents of the district, the Woolshed had always been part of the landscape, but no one knew its history. It stood on the side of Bloodwood Hill overlooking Oakey Creek, and no one took much notice until 1972 when the school in Jondaryan celebrated its centenary. The committee organising the celebrations, wanted to a grand ball like they had in the old days. 

The event sparked such great interest that it couldn’t be held in the town hall. It was suggested to relocate to the wool-room of the old Woolshed, a very fitting place given the history. When committee members inspected the wool-room, they found that the floor had collapsed and was unusable. Despite facing a significant barrier, a passionate and determined team of volunteers from the local farming community came together to pull up the floor, level the joists and replace the boards. It was far from a perfect dancing floor, but it was safe and usable.

On the night of the ball, more than 1,100 people packed into the wool-room, and for most, this was their first glimpse inside the Woolshed. All were overcome by the atmosphere of the old shed, and the feelings of past events pervaded their senses. What began as a feeling, quickly blossomed into a desire to see the old Woolshed preserved for the future. 

The passion for transforming the old Woolshed culminated in Lorrie and Lyn Rutledge to give the building and its 12 acres to the people providing they were committed to preserving it for the future. This gift was accepted at a public meeting in 1973, and together, the people forged a vision for the future for the Woolshed. 



Address:Darr Road, Jondaryan, 4403
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -27.393067
Long: 151.572869
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Structure
Monument Theme:Technology


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Monday 3rd March, 1975
Front Inscription

Plaque :

The gift of the Jondaryan Woolshed and 12 acres of land was made by H. L. (Lawry) Rutledge (1897 - 1986).

Accepted by the people of Australia on 3rd March 1975 as a memorial to the pioneers of the wool industry

Erected by the Jondaryan Woolshed Association and the Rutledge family

4th March 1995


Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au