Historical Places
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Report by William Simpson, Commissioners of Inquiry for Environment and Planning, July 1989

The township of Wentworth has its origins in the choice of a campsite and river crossing point, by the early overlanders, commencing with John Hawdon and Charles Bonney in 1838. During the 1840's a permanent settlement was established and in 1847 the first hotel was built by a Mr Carr. Wentworth, known at the time as McLeod's Crossing, prospered as a centre of commerce servicing the squatters who had commenced taking up runs. c 1846.

The riverboat trade commenced with Captain Cadell's race against William Randall up the Murray in 1853. This industry helped consolidate Wentworth as a town of strategic importance well into the 1890's. It was in Wentworth that vessels from the Darling and both ends of the Murray had to clear Customs, prior to Federation in 1901. From the wharf, situated immediately south of the present Sandwych Street bridge, it was a short walk to the town's hotels. prior to 1858, there had been a formal survey of the town. when Adam's survey of October 29th of that year was prepared, it confirmed the excistence of five buildings; once of which was Thomas McGeorge's "Wentworth Hotel", known to have been built a short distance from the site of the present hotel during the late 1850's. It was sensibly close to the river port...

By 1894, the Town and Country Journal was reporting that in spite of the falling off in the river trade, it {Wentworth] still assumed large proportions. With the opening of the railway to Mildura, however, in 1903, Wentworth's strategic role plummeted further ...
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