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Report on the Examination of Crown Lands etc. in the County of Wellington
K.M. Harrisson, 1928

The Crown Lands Examination Board was established by the Tasmanian Government in the late 1920s. Its job was to look at the possibilities for selection, forestry and mining on the State's remaining Crown land. The report presented here was prepared for the Board by K.M. Harrisson, who served as District Surveyor in the far North West for about 40 years from 1901.

Mr and Mrs K.M. Harrisson

K.M. Harrisson and his wife Edith, for whom Edith Creek is named.
Image courtesy Circular Head Heritage Centre.

Harrisson's report is an overview of the physical and economic geography of western Circular Head (north of the Arthur) in the 1920s. It makes clear the author's very strong bias in favour of farming. In Harrisson's view, all suitable land in Circular Head should be cleared and used for primary production. The tall forests of the district are obstacles to progress. Once logged by sawmillers, according to Harrisson, the Crown forests should be alienated for agricultural development, and dedication of good-quality Crown land as State forest is a mistake.

The original of Harrisson's report is a typescript with many mistakes in spelling and punctuation. In transcribing it for the Web I've corrected only what seem to be typist's errors, such as 'statem' for 'state,'. The report is in sections, compiled here on 17 separate webpages. I've added maps and satellite views to help the reader locate the parishes.

Harrisson used common names for local plants. For species identifications, see below. The references in Harrisson's report to 'litho' are to the lithographed Tasmanian government charts showing property and lease boundaries in Wellington. The report covers land on Wellington lithos 1a, 1b, 1c, 1d, 2a, 2a, 2b and 4.

Report on the Examination of Crown Lands etc. in the County of Wellington (main report)
Appendix I. Exploration, County of Wellington - From Roger River to Marrawah Plain
Appendix II. Exploration 5700 acres State Forest Reserve - Parish of Lerunna
Appendix III. Parish of Warra
Appendix IV. Parish of Marrawah
Appendix V. Parish of Lerunna
Appendix VI. Parish of Riengeena
Appendix VII. V.D.L. Co's Woolnorth Block
Appendix VIII. Parish of Williams
Appendix IX. Parish of Togari
Appendix X. Parishes of Malompto and Terragomna
Appendix XI. Parish of Mowbray
Appendix XII. Parish of Ford
Appendix XIII. Parish of Poilinna
Appendix XIV. Parish of Gibson
Appendix XV. Parishes of Trowutta and Meryanna
Appendix XVI. Hunters Islands

parish map

acacia = Acacia mucronata, locally 'mountain willow' (in Appendix 1)
blackwood = Acacia melanoxylon
blue fern = possibly Blechnum nudum
camel fern = possibly a Gleichenia sp. (in Appendix 1)
cathead fern = Polystichum proliferum
cutting grass = Gahnia grandis
dogwood = Pomaderris apetala
gum = Eucalyptus spp. (in Circular Head, the tall forest 'gums' are E. brookeriana and
                    E. ovata, while the lower-growing 'gum' of coastal areas is E. viminalis)
heath = Harrisson uses this as a generic term for heathy shrubs
horizontal = Anodopetalum biglandulosum
lancewood = Nematolepis squameum, locally 'tallowwood'
laurel fern = Blechnum wattsii (in the 1920s also called 'leech fern')
leatherwood = Eucryphia lucida
manfern = Dicksonia antarctica
manuka = Leptospermum spp. (in Circular Head, L. glaucescens,
                    L. lanigerum and L. scoparium all grow to be large trees)
musk = Olearia argophylla
myrtle = Nothofagus cunninghamii
paperbark = Melaleuca spp. (both M. ericifolia and M. squarrosa
                    grow to be large trees in Circular Head)
peppermint = Eucalyptus nitida
pine = Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
sassafras = Atherosperma moschatum
stringy bark = Eucalyptus obliqua
sword grass = Lepidosperma sp.
titree = Harrisson's word for tree-sized Leptospermum and Melaleuca
treefern = either Cyathea australis or a generic term for C. australis and D. antarctica