7 Facts You Didn’t Know About Gladesville, NSW

Gladesville Has Had Residents for Thousands of Years

The first Europeans to the region came to New South Wales in 1788. Upon setting foot on the land, the settlers realized they were not alone. Experts estimate the continent was home to 750,000 Aboriginal people.

Gladesville, NSW has been home to several different Aboriginal clans from the Anewan to the Yuin. These groups lived primarily along the harbour and harvested food from the bush. Aboriginal families were known to be self-sufficient as they move across the region depending on the season.

The Suburb Takes Its Name from John Glade

John Glade (1771-1848) was one of the first convicts transported from Great Britain to Australia. He arrived on the island in 1796 after stealing a copper tea kettle and copper saucepan and sentenced to seven years of transportation. Glade later became a prominent property owner. After his death, W. Billyard purchased his land and after dividing it, renamed the area Gladesville.

The World-Record Holding Gladesville Bridge

On October 2nd, 1964, construction workers finished the Gladesville Bridge. The structure is the largest single-span concrete arch bridge in the world. Along with the Fig Tree and Tarban Creek bridges, engineers originally designed these paths to form an expressway between Sydney and Newcastle.

Gladesville Bridge

There Are Films About the Gladesville Bridge

The Gladesville Bridge was a historic achievement. In addition to its world-record length, it was also one of the first bridges to utilize computers during the design process. During and since its construction, the Gladesville Bridge has had four documentary films. It also received the Royal Australian Institute of Architects award for civic design in 1965.

The Gladesville Mental Hospital Was the First of Its Kind

The Gladesville Mental Hospital, formerly known as the Tarban Creek Lunatic Asylum, opened in 1838. The building was the first mental asylum specifically made to house patients dealing with emotional or psychological problems. The facility’s first supervisor, John Thomas Digby, sought to improve patient care for the mentally ill.

Gladesville Was Home to Banjo Paterson

Banjo Paterson (1864-1941) was an Australian bush poet who wrote epics such as “Clancy of the Overflow” and “The Man from Snowy River.” His most iconic work, though, is “Waltzing Matilda,” which most people consider the unofficial national anthem of Australia. Paterson stayed in a cottage in the 1870s and 1880s and has a public park named in his honour.

Banjo Paterson

Gladesville Is Diverse

Australia is home to rich ethnic diversity, and Gladesville is no exception. According to the 2016 Australian census, the majority of people (64.9 per cent) are native Australians. Other prominent groups include the Chinese (3.9 per cent), the British (3.2 per cent), Italians (2.2 per cent), New Zealanders (1.8 per cent) and Indians (1.1 per cent).

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