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Step Back in Time to the Mining Ghost Town of Blair Athol

Image 2 - BA Coal & Timber Personnel at a weighbridge 1915Stepping onto a Central Queensland coal mine during the late 1800’s would give today’s miners an insight into the humble yet trailblazing beginnings of the now high tech, world class mining industry.

The Blair Athol Collection, now showing at the Clermont Historical Centre (from August 6), gives viewers an insight into the emergence of mining technology and international business deals still familiar today, from the Blair Athol Coal Mine located near Clermont in Central Queensland.

From Japanese Ouchi Urushi dolls to the original Ruston steam shovel, the exhibition is diverse covering a selection of items and stories which include the old ghost town of Blair Athol.

The Chair of the Clermont Historical Centre Advisory Committee and local Councillor Barbara Stranks said the collection was a pivotal slice of Australian history.

“The items have been donated by Rio Tinto and have been carefully prepared for the exhibition,” Cr Stranks said.

“This collection shows a turning point in Australian history especially for our mining community.

“Covering the period from 1800-1980’s the Blair Athol collection is where the emergence of mining technology breakthroughs begin, amid a scene of social uprising where racial tensions are high.

“Like the town of Clermont today, coal mining is still a dominant industry and many people will relate to the stories told in this exhibition.

“With the Carmichael Coal Mine being approved recently, we continue to see international partnerships forming and booming right here in Central Queensland.

“I’m sure, it’s a sight for members of our community who once lived in the town of Blair Athol to see the growth of the mining industry today,” said Cr Stranks.

The Blair Athol Collection is on exhibition from August 6 to December 13 at the Clermont Historical Centre.

The Clermont Historical Centre is open Wednesday to Saturday, 9am to 3pm.

Isaac Regional Council is proud to house the Blair Athol Collection, donated by Rio Tinto, and works collaboratively with the Clermont Historical Centre Advisory Committee to exhibit collections.

For more information please contact Isaac Regional Council on 1300 ISAACS (1300 472 227).

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