This building has had a few hotel names such as Savoy Hotel and Great Western Hotel. It was built between 1890 and 1915 on the site of the old Club Hotel which was destroyed by fire. Part of the new Cohns building was used as the Tattersalls hotel. The owner was once the Mayor of Southern Cross and also the Magistrate of Coolgardie
Outside the museum is a set uup of a prospectors’ camp. On display is the accommodation which was used in the way of a canvas tent and hut of corrugated iron. Other implements such as tools and dryblowers which were often used in the Eastern Goldfields by the early prospectors.
There are two Visitors Centres. One in Kalgoorlie and the other one is in nearby Boulder. The one in Kalgoorlie is on Hannan Street and is open from 8.30am to 5.00pm Mon – Fri and from 9.00am to 5.00pm on the weekends. They offer a very good map and guide to all things of interest in both places. The Boulder office is found on Burt Street. Be sure to ask when the Super Pit are having their blasting.
This old hotel sits vacant now behind the WA Museum. It was built in early 1900’s and was a key hotel in Kalgoorlie. In the 1920’s the hotel was turned into a boarding house until a fire destroyed most of the building in the 1980’s. It was sold and the new owner attempted to restore it with the idea of turning the old hotel into a residence. The project was never finished and just sits deteriorating.
The Laslett building was constructed during the 1890’s. The style is quite unique with its Art Nouveau motifs, islamic styled curved windows and tiles. The owner constructed the buildings from a fortune he made from land dealings.
As you transfer from the new building of the WA Museum into the historic British Arms, one of the first rooms you find yourself in displays some great examples of historic union tapestries and banners.
There is a report that a ghost dwells in the old hotel. It is supposed be the spirit of the hotel’s publicans wife who fell down the staircase in 1913 and died some 3 days later in hospital. It is believe that her fall was not an accident. Some of the staff as well as visitors have reported either seeing or feeling her presence and there have also been several incidents within the museum which have been accredited to her.
The British Arms Hotel was built in 1899 to cater for the increasing number of miners who travelled to the goldfields on a daily basis looking for work. It has the distinction of being the narrowest hotel (only 6 metres wide) in the Southern Hemisphere and can be found behind the WA Museum and only accessible through the museum. In its time it attempted to lure passengers who travelled to Kalgoorlie on the Loopline tramway which travelled from the opposide side of the to Boulder and further on to mines along the Golden Mile. In 1924 the hotel ceased to operate and became a boarding house. In 1968 it then became a museum.
This was the office of the Golden Mile and Murchison Timber co and used tgo sit at the rail siding at Golden Gate. It was relocated around 1955. The office now sits as part of the outer area of the WA Museum.
This tiny wooden bilding is mounted on a railway flatcar so that it oculd be easily transported when the settlements moved. During the 1970’s it was used as a garden shed behind the Boulder Police Station until it was gived and relocated in 1992. The Police Office sits behind the WA Museum’s main building.
The stay at home miners wife didn’t have it easy. She would be up early making her husband breakfast and his lunch. Then she turned her attention to getting older children off to school. There was no running hot water or electrical appliances which made cleaning and washing/wringing quite a chore. The making of the families clothes were all done by hand and old clothes were recycled and cuat up for younger children or rag rugs. Some basic items were delivered by cart from the butcher, milkman, green grocer and ice man but there were no freezers to keep food for any length of time.
This was a typical miners cottage and show how he and probably his family would have lived during the goldrush times. Their routines were built around the working times at the mine which were made up of three 8 hour shifts. The miners would either catch a train or walk to the mines and would take with them his lunch and billy of tea. Once he arrived he would change into his mine clothes, grabe his cap and lamp and descend into the mine. When the miner wasn’t working he would socialise with friends at the pub or be found doing odd jobs outside the home.
The Woodline Post Office is one of the outdoor displays at the WA museum. Woodlines were the railway lines that were used for tapping the timber reserves. They provided timber for the mines and firewood for power in the Goldfields.
This amazing clock during the early 1900’s was originally housed in Montgomery Bros Store which has now become Monty’s Restaurant. Neither keys nor a card were needed to keep the correct time, instead a worker would just turn the lever to his number, press it and the record was made. There were two coloured ribbons, one for ordinary time which was shown in blue and overtime and late was shown in red.
This amazing camera belonged to a Goldfields photographer, J.J. Dywer. Many of the photos you see in the museum were taken by Dwyer including a large display on the mezzanine floor. Dwyer had his studio in the Park buildings on Kalgoorlie’s Hannan Street.