GOLD & WATER
Fabulous discoveries of gold in its
eastern interior in the 1890s changed Western Australia for ever.
People from around the world flocked to what had been regarded until then as a
backwater. But it soon became obvious that fresh water was more precious than the gold the prospectors were
A reliable supply of water was needed not only to prevent death and disease but also
to take the gold from the earth. The solution was an engineering scheme that won international acclaim and
operates to this day.
The images and information attached to this website can be used to explore the
relationship between WA’s Gold Rush and the Goldfields Water Supply Scheme; the inhospitable conditions that
made it a matter of life or death; the imaginative scheme to pump water to the arid interior; CY O’Connor the
engineer in charge.
Click on the representative image to view resources within a particular
Click on an image within a theme to find out more about that particular
These web pages were created as a result of a partnership between The Le@rning
Federation and the National Trust of Australia (WA).
The National Trust of Australia gratefully acknowledges the JS
Battye Library, Arthur Coopes, the Forrest family and Ron Davidson for use of
Last updated 30 January 2017