Our Stories

Learning about the history of the Milton-Ulladulla area is much more than reading through lists of dates, names and facts. Every place has its unique stories – stories that explain why a place is what it is today. They bring to life the character of the people who have lived there and how, over centuries, they have interacted with and changed their local environment.

The stories of Milton-Ulladulla are the stories of its Aboriginal indigenous inhabitants, of the early settlers who came here in the 1800s and their descendants and, because even yesterday is now history, the more recent stories of the many people who have chosen to call this part of the New South Wales South Coast their home through the 20th and 21st centuries.

From Bendalong to Bawley Point, Conjola to Croobyar, Turmeil to Tabourie Lake, and Yatte Yattah to Yadboro, and from the Dreamtime to today, here are the stories of our place.

People Places Events Industries

Bernard Brown: Milton Ulladulla District’s first policeman

Bernard Brown, ancestor of a number of Milton Ulladulla residents, arrived in NSW as a free settler in November, 1848. His diaries, diligently maintained for well over two decades, were treasured by his descendants and later passed on to the Mitchell library. They have been a valuable resource for researching the history of the Shoalhaven District. Being of humble birth and having limited education, his writing, spelling and punctuation make deciphering his diaries a little like reading hieroglyphics.

A ‘hobo’ life in Milton

I was born in 1945 at the Old Milton Hospital from where my parents Leila and Elwyn (‘Tiger’) Anderson took me home to the family property ‘Wickham Hill’, Milton. Mum helped with the milking so as an infant I was put in a play-pen in the engine/wash-up room of the dairy.

The Drurys of Glencoe

By the 1840s, the fertile land closest to the sea had been taken up. It needed a hardy breed to tackle the rugged country shelving from Pigeon House Mountain. Michael Drury hailed from London; his innate resource and Cockney adaptability helped him to pioneer at Glencoe.

Early settlement and industries

In April 1770 Captain James Cook sailed past Ulladulla as he made his way up the coast in HMS Endeavour and then, in January 1788, the First Fleet arrived in Port Jackson (later Sydney) bringing convicts, marines and a few free settlers to the new colony of New South Wales.  

Pigeon House Mountain

The first reference to any feature of the country within a radius of 20 miles of Ulladulla was made by Captain James Cook aboard HMS Endeavour while on his voyage north along the Australian east coast. Two days after his discovery of that coast, at 7am on 21  April 1770, he noted in his private log that he saw a peaked hill bearing N. 10′ E, t.

Latest Articles

  • Have you found Millards Creek Weir, Ulladulla?

    Have you seen a piece of Ulladulla’s history, existing since 1861, near a busy road, but only noticed by a few pedestrians? It is the weir over Millards Creek, 20 metres off St Vincent Street, looking west.

  • Heritage trees in Milton Ulladulla

    The heritage fig in Milton is a well-known landmark and much loved by locals and visitors and the historic elm outside the Anglican church is also an important part of Milton’s history.

  • The day the Milton Show exploded

    In the late 1940s, Milton Shows were still fairly frugal affairs and offered little entertainment for small children. Children quite naturally created their own fun.

  • A Milton ‘institution’, Matron Gwenda Porter

    Gwenda Porter arrived in Milton by bus in 1940 and was said to have told the bus driver that she would be back on it the next day after seeing how small the town and hospital were. Instead, she stayed on as Matron at Milton Ulladulla Hospital for the next 32 years, retiring in 1972 and then continuing to live in the district until her death.

  • Milton pioneer William Henry Wilford

    Milton’s 19th century prosperity was partly built on the expanding dairy industry, established by pioneers like William Wilford on the rich volcanic monzonite soil that surrounds the town.