Hey guys, for the next couple of weeks I’ll be writing blog posts about a research report for my University degree, but before I go into too much detail I better introduce myself for those who don’t known me. Hi, my name is Nicole Monk and I’m currently undertaking a Directed Studies topic in my Graduate Diploma of Archaeology at Flinders University (this topic gives students the chance to complete research to better prepare themselves for the workforce and to work with industry partners). After looking through a list of potential areas to study, provided by the department, I decided on researching Highbury’s Torrens Linear Park, a location that I had never been to or heard about.
A few days after confirming my choice I received an email providing me with contact details of my industry partner and a template for my research, which would involve an archival study of Highbury’s Torrens Linear Park to determine the significance of the local area and the rockshelters located within the park.
After a few more days I eagerly drove the 40 minutes to meet my industry partner, Lea Crosby, at the Florey Reconciliation Task Force to find out what was expected from the research and to seek out any information that was held in the office. The information that I was given at the office was minimal, as many would know in the archaeological field, information regarding Indigenous people is often limited, and having too much information would have made the study pointless. At the conclusion of the meeting Lea and I organised to go on a tour of the Park so that I could have an understanding of the overall shape and scope of the study, which will be in my next post.
Following this meeting I was rushed out the door because it was a Friday, and let’s face it who doesn’t want to leave early on a Friday?
Blog post 1
As part of my directed study, I am assisting the Florey Reconciliation Task Force in drafting a heritage nomination for a little house in Highgate (Tea Tree Gully) that is affectionately called, “Boord House”. The name doesn’t imply magnificence, but I think it is one of the most fascinating historic places in Adelaide – and only a 15 minute drive from the CBD! It left an impression from the beginning when Associate Prof. Heather Burke told me about the house and its odd accoutrements. One of its defining features is a wall with what are believed to be gun slits and which is still very much intact. Much of the cottage, in fact, is still intact, and under the sturdy cover of a shed which was obviously built much more recently.
When I went to the Florey Electorate building for the first time to meet with Lea Crosby, she was kind enough to provide me a variety of resources, all referring to the Boord family, their history, and a little about the house itself. The more I found out, the more I wondered why such a place wasn’t listed yet, and I was genuinely worried. She was also kind enough to show me the house – easy enough to get to down a scenic route off Lower Northeast Road.
The surrounding area is part of the Linear Park project of Campbelltown, with a creek running through, and is speckled with a mix of native and non-native trees. Most, if not all of the latter are old fruit trees which I believe are part of the Boord’s orchard. Lea led me down the trail through the trees and to the house nearby. Little did I know that my first problem would be waiting in the form of a big black metal fence surrounding the house, and a conspicuous sign stating, “PRIVATE PROPERTY”, and with that went my initial plans to visit the house regularly – apparently, they were recent additions. Despite the barrier, the tall black bars reassured me that there were precautions being taken in preserving such a beautiful historic building, despite not being heritage listed. While the property may no longer (or for the moment) be available for public visitation, a memorial plaque is available for passers-by to read about the house and a brief history of the Boord family in South Australia.