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Barkly, Victoria facts for kids

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Anglican church Barkly.jpg
Anglican church, Barkly
Postcode(s) 3381
Elevation 270 m (886 ft)
LGA(s) Pyrenees Shire

Barkly is a very small town in Victoria, Australia, about 180 kilometres northwest of Melbourne. It is located near the junction of the roads from Landsborough to Redbank, and from Frenchmans to St Arnaud. It is close to the western side of the St Arnaud Range National Park.

The area was first called the Navarre Diggings after gold was found in June 1859 by a group led by James Law (1827-1910). It was about six miles from the Navarre township. This caused a gold rush and there were soon about 700 people on the diggings. At the peak of the rush, there were over 6000 people in the area digging for gold.

James Law, who had come to Australia from Scotland, was given a reward of 150 pounds for being the first person to find gold. Other members of his group, John Fewster, W.R. Marshall and George Mill also were rewarded.

The name was changed to Barkly on 1 November 1861, after the Governor of Victoria, Sir Henry Barkly. The name was changed by the local gold warden, Mr. Warden Alley, a government official in charge of the diggings. A school was started, the Barkly Common School.

A cemetery, now called the Pioneer Cemetery, was begun close to the original diggings. The town of Barkly developed about two miles from this area, and a new cemetery was opened.

Barkly has a small Anglican church, a hall, and a few houses. The school has been closed and the buildings removed. There is a rose and lavender farm which is open to the public during the year. A headstone was placed on James Law's grave on 5 May, 1985. In 1996 a memorial stone was placed at the site of the first gold discovery.

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