Macpherson Homestead


Macpherson Homestead

Macpherson Homestead is situated 1km east of Carnamah, overlooking the town, and is built near the Carnamah Spring site.

Duncan Macpherson and George Slater took up land in the vicinity of what became known as Carnamah in September 1861.

Building commenced in 1869 and it took five years to complete. From its completion, Macpherson Homestead was the home of the Macpherson family until 1939.

The stone homestead has external dimensions of 22.5m (74 feet) in length and 10.4m (34 feet) in width. Except for a small room at each end, a verandah runs around three sides. The enormous roof is pitched at one angle and originally was thatched. The bush battens are still in place. The thick stone walls are 4.27m (14 feet) high with large carefully selected stones on the outside and smaller ones on the inside.

The homestead consists of four bedrooms, lounge room, passage, dining room and bathroom. A wooden sleeper path once lead to the cookhouse, storeroom and cellar. Another three-roomed stone building once stood housing the laundry, ironing room, and cream separating room, and yet another two-roomed building housed the workman.

Large rainwater tanks, which have been removed because of the unsafe condition of the timber stands, were the sole water supply.

The homestead was a popular resting place for travellers until 1894, when the Midland Railway Line was completed.

In 1979, the restoration committee obtained some funding and restored some of the walls, re-laid some of the flooring, and a new iron roof was installed. The cookhouse has been left in its unrestored state to show the poor condition the homestead was in before restoration.

His sons, Donald and George, inherited his land when Duncan Macpherson died in April 1898. Following George's tragic death in 1898, Donald solely owned the enormous tact of land. By 1920 Donald had sold most of the land, and at the time of his death in 1931 he owned a mere 3,567 acres. These acres included the homestead and were jointly inherited by Donald's unwedded sister, Elizabeth, and their nephew Percy Campbell Macpherson. Elizabeth and Percy sold the remaining land excluding 100 acres, which included the homestead. Elizabeth resided in the homestead until her death in 1939. Following her death the homestead and the remaining 100 acres were leased and later sold.

Macpherson Homestead was classified by the National Trust in 1993, and registered by the Heritage Council of Western Australia in April 1994.

In early 1995, the Historical Society, who are now guardians of the building, received a grant from the Lotteries Commission through its Heritage Program to have a Conservation Plan prepared. This plan has given the Historical Society a guide in the preservation of this wonderful homestead, which is special to the people of Carnamah.

After restoration works were completed, Mr Ian Macpherson officially opened Macpherson Homestead on Saturday 23rd October 2004.

For further history and visitor information go to http://www.carnamah.com.au/homestead