Local Mannum self-drive tour

Start Point: Visitor Information Centre – Arnold Park

1. Arnold Park : Named after Capt.J.G. Arnold, an ex Swedish Sea Captain who was dismissed from Service for his part in a dispute with Shipping Board. Travelling to Australia, he landed At Port Adelaide where no work was available for him. Making his way to the River Ports He arrived in Murray Bridge, took a job as a deckhand on a boat sailing to Mannum. He Became so taken with this town he remained here. He regained his ticket eventually And captained several ships before buying the Dry Dock (alongside) from Captain William Randell which enabled him to build his own shipping line including the 135ft.

M.V. MANNUM. He also owned the P.S. MARION during her previous active life as a passenger ship. Captain Arnold became a major developer in Mannum.

2. Woolshed Emporium : Turn right at corner of McLaren St. The first Woolshed in Mannum. McLaren was then know as Woolshed Gully.

3. Shop opposite originally Thomas Randall’s Store.

4. House on right – Frank Randell’s home.

5. House on left – William Randell’s final home in Mannum. His first home was at Noa No where P.S. Mary Ann was launched. Second home a four bedroom Cottage now Part of Mannum Hotel.

6. Thomas Randall’s House : Thomas was the firth resident of Mannum. He was a “Jack of all trades”. He helped to build the “Mary Ann”’ was a member of the crew in the early years, built wood stacks for boats and collected leeches by sending Aboriginals into the swamps to allow leeches to attach themselves to their legs ! He sold these in Adelaide to Mr. F.H. Faulding and others.

7. First School House In Mannum, opened 1871 by Headmaster, William Ambrose. Now Masonic Lodge.

8. House next door to (7) was schoolmaster’s residence built 1908 to replace original house built 1877. New house cost $1,578.

9. To Lookout : via Victoria Street, Albert Street and Crawford Crescent

10.Mannum Primary School : Land purchased 1917, first building erected 1921. Now amalgamated with High School and no longer used.

11.Mannum Community College & Community Library.

12. Baseby Cottage : Home of early settler Benjamin Baseby. Cottage was originally on high ground above town. It was demolished and rebuilt on this site as a project by High School Students.

13. Council Chambers & Community Centre.

14. Horwood Bagshaw factory : Originally David Shearer’s factory built to replace
first factory in Randell Street.

15. Arnold Street named after J.G. Arnold mentioned in Ref.1. The houses in this street probably among the first pre-fabricated homes in South Australia. Originally all identical they became know as “Tin Town” and “Seven Sisters”. Several have been enlarged but all retain the Galvanised iron finish. Arnold was Responsible for the building of these homes and several other “conventional” Homes still standing in King George Street.

16. Mannum Showgrounds, incorporating Sports Oval, Tennis Courts and Riding Club grounds. It was on this land that Benjamin Baseby grew the first crop of wheat in this part of South Australia which encouraged others to take up land for wheat growing and later other crops.

17. The Esplanade : A popular residential street offering good river views. a) No.47 Artistic Display of animals made out of Colorbond iron, from a horse, Emus, sheep, kangaroos, elephant, koala, giraffe, butterflies – 45 individual Cut-outs of the animal kingdom. Well worth a look .

18. Port Mannum Hill : The river flat below this Hill was favoured by Capt. Arnold as a port and gazetted by the South Australian Government as the Town of Port Mannum. Capt. Randell had other ideas and had the advantage of already having a port which was already in use by the Flour Mill and the Shearer Brother and regularly visited by growing numbers of River Boats. Randall named his port “Port Mannum” and won the battle, but the area from Port Mannum Hill upstream to Johnson’s Hill is still known as Port Mannum. A move to remove the name was proposed in 1994, but when the proposal resulted in strong protest the proposal was dropped.

19. Leonaville and Unforgettable Houseboats, which has won state tourism awards and has gone on to win national awards for “Unique Accommodation”.

20. Pumping Station No 1 : from here water is pumped to Pumping Station No 2 at Palmer which is 500 feet higher than No 1. From No 2. the water is pumped a Further 500 feet to Station No 3 which is at the top of Palmer Hill. From there Gravity takes the water to metropolitan Dams.

21. Coffer Dam.

22.Mary Ann Reserve, named to honour the first Paddle Steamer, the “Mary Ann”, mostly built at Gumeracha by William Randell and his brothers, Francis (Frank). Thomas and Elliott and dragged by bullock train across country to Noa No Station owned by their father William Beavis Randell, 5 kms upstream from Mannum. There is was launched in 1852 and so commenced the River Boat era.

Monuments have been erected in the Reserve to commemorate the “Mary Ann”, Captain Sturt’s epic voyage with his men down the Murray passing this point in February 1830 and a further memorial to the “Mary Ann”. The “square” boiler That is mounted in the Rotunda is a replica of the original boiler from that boat.The original boiler is now part of the new “Mannum Dock Museum of River History”, located at 6 Randell Street. Another item of interest is the board Showing heights of recorded floods. A second Rotunda was built 1989 in Place of one built 1913 to commemorate William Randell’s death. This Rotunda was destroyed by a falling branch in 1989. Boats leaving from the Wharf area are “Murray Princess” ,“Four Knots Cruises” and “Proud Mary”.

23. If you have not visited the “P.S.Marion” previously make sure you finish your drive at Arnold Park and have a look at this five vessel which was build in 1897 at Milang as a cargo boat. Later it was converted to a passenger vessel and sailed the River for many years becoming a Boarding House at a Riverland town for several years until in 1963 it was brought to Mannum and laid to rest in the Dry Dock and used as a Museum. Restoration commenced in 1990 with volunteer Labour and Re-commissioned in November 1994. She is now an integral part of “Mannum Dock Museum of River History”, which is open daily. A cruise schedule for the P.S. Marion is available from the Mannum Visitor Information Centre.

The Dry Dock once the only one in Australia, was purchased by Capt. Randell And towed by him from Goolwa to Mannum behind his boat “P.S.NIL DESPERANDUM” after a hair raising trip across Lake Alexandrina.

Try a local walk or Scenic Murray River Cliffs drive