Our School - School History

The History of Teesdale

The township of Teesdale is situated on the Native Creek in the Golden Plains Shire (formally Shire of Leigh).  It is in the County of Grant in the Parish of Carrah and Burtwarrah.

When gold was discovered at Ballarat in 1851 the township was surveyed and on 14th April, 1852 eleven half-acre town allotments and nine larger cultivation lots were sold in the new township of Teesdale.

In 1849, a squatter named Peter Sharp settled near the present homestead of Woolbrook, in a hut made of slabs covered with mud and with a stringy bark roof.  There were no fences at that time, so he had to have shepherds to mind each flock of sheep.

In the early days, all stores were transported by bullock wagon from Geelong to Ballarat and Teesdale was on the main route.  The first house in the township, then called Native Creek because of the natives who roamed the area, was a hut built in 1851, which was occupied by a man named Barnes.  It was on a site near the old Post Office and has since been pulled down.

Very soon Teesdale began to grow with a combined store, hotel and post office, a hotel, blacksmith's shop, The Mechanics' Institute and many houses springing up.  The Chinese tried market gardening utilising the water from the reserve and even today the reserve is known as Chinamen's Lagoon.

School in Teesdale had its earliest beginnings in a small rented two-roomed building made of soft stone.  The teacher was Mr. Francis Phips, who lived in a tent 8 by 10 feet.  In 1858 the Presbyterian Church was building and on 8th March a school was established during the week and a place of worship on Sunday.  The lower grades were taught in the Mechanics' Institute nearby.  In its opening year the enrolment was 36 pupils and was allotted the number 628.

On the 13th July 1874 the District Inspector had recommended that a site for the new school on the east side of the creek be purchased.  The whole of allotment 28 consisted of 4 acres, 1 rood, 23 perches was purchased from Henry H. Cations for 32pound/19/1.  A new brick building 36ft by 20ft with a porch was built at a cost of 460 pound and was officially opened on 1st June, 1878 with the number 2065 and an enrolment of 78 children.

Teesdale Primary School continues to be an integral part of the Teesdale community.  In October 2003, the school community celebrated the 125th Anniversary and the information detailed here is quoted from the "Teesdale Primary School Memories" published to commemorate the event.  This book can be purchased from the school office.