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About this City Journal

It's a brave new world in Australia in the 1800s. Come watch a settlement grow from an tiny outpost to a 21st Century city.

Entries in this City Journal


1837 : The Way Forward

On arrival in Flinders Landing, Robert Hoddle, the new surveyor-general for the colony, set up base in the Town Hall at Tower Hill. After a few trips down to the docks and the backstreets, Hoddle was quite perturbed by the general lack of planning and filth. His first report to the Town Administration went something like this...

"On arrival at Flinders Landing, the town sits majestically around a small cove with steep hills and low rise development. The Town Hall and Tower on the hill to the left look over the cove and town below. Unfortunately, this is as good as Flinders Landing gets. Where cattle tracks once cut through the bush you will now find a road, and that's about the only highlight of Flinders Landing's planning. The streets are filled with rubbish, the roads lead nowhere in particular and are unsuitable for a place with any ambitions of being a major city. The only road that leads to the docks is steep sloping and certain to become a traffic sewer unless other connections to the rest of the town are created. There are no water or garbage disposal services, there is no marketplace for the trade of goods and the farms in the central township would be more suitable as additional housing. The central business area is small, walled in by the hills and housing that has seen better days, and lacks any refinement to cater for well to do types, if they would even bother to lower themselves to living in the district. Reorganisation of the roads, town and facilities is of upmost importance...."

After 3 months of scouting the district and considering current development and future potential, Hoddle finally had a pla for the central area of Flinders Landing.

Surveyor Robert Hoddle leading his team on an exploration around Flinders Landing Cove


Current and Proposed layout of Flinders Landing.

Key to the maps below

Beige = farms

Light Green = Residential

Dark Green = Scrub/Undeveloped Land

Light Blue = Docks

Medium Blue = Commercial

Red = Civic Buildings

Yellow = Industrial

Brown = Gardens & Civic Squares

Black = Current street network

Grey = Proposed street network

The Current Layout of Central Flinders Landing


Proposed Layout of Flinders Landing


Hoddle's Plan : What it hopes to achieve

  • Improved North-South roads of double width to allow for future growth of Flinders Landing.
  • 3 main roads connecting the docks to the town and surrounding areas.
  • Widen and straighten important roads to improve access.
  • Allows for future civic structures like a town market and large civic hall.
  • Increased residiential areas close to the centre of town.
  • Expanded commerical zones
  • More parks and gardens for the townsfolk.

Reply to Comments

Schulmanator / Jetty Jockey / Terring

Thanks for your comments.... The area is definately spreading far and wide with all the farms but it might be time for a bit more development around the central area. I've been doing some experimentation for future developments since the last post a few weeks back so I've now got a good feel for where I want to go next with development... The new improved road layout will help facilitate that. ;)


1836 : Man with a Plan


The spread of farmland and settlements at the expense of the native forests continued unabated around Flinders Harbour. The ferry service had opened up lands all along the harbour and rivers and many new settlers took advantage of the convenience this service provided. The Settlements around Flinders Landing now had over 10,000 people and the region over 40,000, and the resulting pollution and waste were impacting on the amenity of the settlement. Some of the townsfolk, having lived in Flinders Harbour for over 20 years, began to think of themselves as separate from the Colonial Administration at Sydney (Port Jackson) and showed interest in the idea of self administration.


Flinders Harbour District 37,790

Flinders Landing 10,011

Hillsborough 5,982

Sealers Cove 4,993

Bligh Bay 4,789

Surf Coast 3,100

Welsh Bay 2,896

Haven 2,498

Fleet Islands 1,796

Hawke Valley 1,725

District Overview - Road Network


District Overview - Settlement


Development around Flinders Landing

New town by the beach - Carlisle Beach

The growth in the population of Flinders Harbour saw the creation of many new townships around Flinders Landing. 3km South of Flinders Landing, a new settlement was founded on the long coastal strip fronting onto Bass Strait. The proximity to Flinders Landing and the wide strip of sand saw Carlisle Beach become a popular summer retreat.


New towns on the northern shore of the Grenville River - Preston Ferry

Development of land north of the Grenville River had long been stymied by the lack of a direct link to Flinders Landing. With the development of the ferry services around Flinders Harbour, land on the north shore was quickly snapped up for farming and residential development. A road constructed between Fleet Town and Preston Ferry led the the spread of farming communities all the way along the Grenville River out to it's mouth at Bass Strait.


A new port facility at Georgewater.

The growing population of the district saw the rise in the manufacturing industry and shipment of goods back to England and between the colonies of the south seas. The development of port facilities at Georgewater was crucial to reducing the congestion around Flinders Landing and to open up more land for industrial development.


Expansion of facilities at Barrack Point

The increase in lawlessness around Flinders Landing, coupled with the growing trade in convict transportation, saw the expansion of the convict barracks at Barrack Point. A new administration building and a dedicated gaol for the most dangerous of criminals were constructed. A platform built into the jetty side of the gaol was used for public execution of many a convict.


Tower Hill Gardens

The lack of open space around Flinders Landing led to the dedication of the first large parkland. Tower Hill, which had been covered in thick scrub, was cleared of folliage and a formal path network created with the Tower being at the centre of this new park. A concern of the town administration was that these important spots would be lost to the sprawl of housing around the settlement so by locking this land away from development, places of importance to the settlement could be preserved for the future. Tower Hill Gardens quickly became the go-to place for New Years Eve when garden parties and groups gathered to watch fire works and ring in the new year.


Arrival of the Colonial Surveyor-General (Robert Hoddle) in Flinders Landing

At the request of the Governor of New South Wales, the surveyor Robert Hoddle was sent in 1836 to Flinders Landing on the way to the new settlement at Port Philip district. As Flinders Landing had not been built with any formal plan in place to guide development, the narrow winding streets were particularly unsuited to the growing size of the township and the havoc caused by unregulated land use. Robert Hoddle was to report back to Governor Bourke with plans for the new colony at Port Philip and also a plan to improve the settlement and further development at Flinders Landing.


1833 : Flinders Landing celebrates its 20th anniversary of settlement.

On a cool but clear night in March 1833, the sky above Flinders Landing exploded in a riot of colour as Flinders Landing celebrated its 20th anniversary of settlement. People from all around the harbour converged on the shores of Flinders Landing and the nearby Watch Tower to admire the amazing spectacle and celebrate the thriving settlement they had built. As the population of the district was now over 24,000 many saw this event as a turning point for Flinders landing, which was leaving its rural small-town feeling behind and embracing the trappings of a modern city.


Reply to Comments :

Jetty Jockey : Nice to know you’re liking this CJ! I’m attempting to keep something a bit “country” about my CJ for a while by leaving plenty of open/undeveloped land and not creating too many built up areas which isn’t always easy. I’m sure you are itching to spread “Levittown” developments outside the boundaries of what already exists in the “real world” of Cape May that you are creating... hahaha.

NMUSpidey : Still not quite sure how quickly I will build the population on this CJ but it won’t be a mega New York by 1900 that’s for sure. In 1900, the two largest cities were Melbourne & Sydney and they had only 500,000 at that stage so consider that the upper limit for what I plan. You’ll notice that the farmland is growing considerably quicker than the population for now. Those farms (Simpeg?) provide a surplus of jobs so there is no problem with unemployment for the foreseeable future. Enjoy its smalltown-ness while it lasts ;)

I’m still debating opening up a few important decisions (do those poll things work?) to CJ readers that would decide how the region develops but more on that at a later date J.

SimCoug : Thanks SimCoug! Always good to know people are liking the story so far. Your SorGun CJ gives me plenty of ideas for my own journal... nice work btw -looking forward to your updates!

Benedict : Thanks for your comments Benedict... I think the hardest thing about historical CJs is trying to keep it looking historical and not create modern suburbia in the 1800s – I even had to go back and de-zone parts of one area in my latest update of Flinders Landing as it was a bit too suburban for my liking (I’m trying to introduce inventions based on when they first appeared in Aussie cities so for now, you won’t see organised waste collection, urban railroads, water pumps or coal fired power plants).

Ps: your top 10+10 journal is a great source for finding interesting reading material...

And now for a brief update on random happenings around Flinders Harbour (the last for a few weeks while I finish off assignments :bunny: ).

How the people of Flinders Landing enjoy a warm summers evening.

One of the favourite ways to spend time with family and friends in Flinders Landing is to take a buggy ride to one of the hilltop clearings on a warm summers evening and have a picnic. People gather around the gazebo where a band plays while children frollick and the adults dance and drink (usually way too much). One of the most popular lookouts is located just north of Hillsborough township.


The growing waste problems of Flinders Landing

With no waste collection services, the townsfolk pile rubbish in the streets and their backyards. The growing piles of waste are becoming a big concern for townsfolk as snakes and spiders tend to nest and breed in these no-go zones. With the largest population, Flinders Landing has the most serious waste problem and during rainstorms, the waste tends to end up in the Grenville River, affecting water quality downstream and around the docks.


Getting a bit hot under the collar.

With no fire stations, the townsfolk rely on the kindness of strangers and friends when a fire breaks out. This fire, one of the more serious events recorded so far, killed 3 people, 1 garden gnome, and destroyed a row of 5 houses at Bligh Bay on a hot summers evening in 1832. Thankfully the townsfolk stopped the fire from spreading to nearby farms.


On your boat, boy!

Inter-village transport is dominated by ferry services. Due to the spreading out of settlements around the shores of Flinders Harbour, the main form of transport for many villages is a ferry into Flinders Landing. 2 Steam ferries, purchased second hand from New York, provide the bulk of the ferry services around the harbour. With no bridges to cross the waters of the Grenville River and Flinders Harbour, these ferries are the lifeline for many of the settlements not connected by road to Flinders Landing.



1828 : The Land Grants


Flinders Harbour District 11,776

Flinders Landing 4,700

Sealers Cove 2,130

Hillsborough 2,526

Bligh Bay 1,573

Fleet Islands 338

Haven 509

The Land Grant Era Begins

In an effort to expand the population and encourage migration from England, the district administration, in conjuction with the Colonial Administration in New South Wales, began a program of offering land grants to prospective settlers from England. This has led to the growth of new settlements around Flinders Harbour and the opening up of more agricultural land. New outposts of settlement formed at Haven (inside Flinders Harbour) and Fleet Town (just outside the entrance to the Grenville River) while land beside the newly constructed road to Bligh Bay rapidly developed.

Overview of Flinders Harbour

Map of Flinders Harbour District 1828 (red dots indicate new settlements)


Roadmap of Flinders Harbour District


Growth in Flinders Landing

Although most of the growth in Flinders Harbour District was in the new outposts or along the roads connecting Bligh Bay and Sealers Cove to Flinders Landing, there was significant population growth around Flinders Landing at the new settlement of Spencerfield and around the edges of Georgewater, Soldiers Hill and Pyrmont. Farming land close to the docks at Flinders Landing was jealously guarded which had prevented a large scale expansion of housing development closer to town.

Flinders Landing circa 1828


Township of Spencerfield

To take advantage of the new road towards Bligh Bay, a settlement called Spencerfield was formed just south of Flinders Landing. The name Spencer came from newly arrived settlers who were related to the Earl of Spencer and who had recently moved to Flinders Landing as part of the lands grant program.

Spencerfield circa 1828


Expansion at Soldiers Hill

To accommodate the increasing number of soldiers and guards required to work at the Barracks, additional housing was constructed nearer the crest of Soldiers Hill. After a few near misses and one fatality on the muddy and treacherous tracks near the crest, a new switchback road was constructed to make the journey from the top of Soldiers Hill to Flinders Landing safer. A proposed expansion of Waterloo Barracks, to house more convicts and provide some additional accommodation on site for soldiers, would mean that Soldiers Hill would also need further expansion to cope with the growth of population (especially retail space).

Expansion at Soldiers Hill and the new switchback road.


The new settlements around Flinders Landing

Settlements in Bligh Bay District

One of the first settlements of "Land Granters" (as they became known as) was to the south of Flinders Landing in a bay protected from the treatcherous swells of the Southern Ocean. The settlement, called Bligh Bay, was named in honour of the 4th Governor of the New South Wales colony. The protective harbour would allow for expansion of merchant shipping in the district as Flinders Cove was already becoming quite congested with ships. The safe anchorage could also provide a place for new industries to spring up close to docks. The road North to Flinders landing was also quickly settled to take advantage of the passing trade while a small township grew up near the site of the shipwreck of The Thames which was still partially visible in the sand. In 1828, the fresh water lake to the East of the road was called Lake Elizabeth in honour of the former Queen of England. Although the land to the west of the lake was extensively developed, the remaining land around this lake was reserved so the lake could provide a future water source for the people of Flinders Landing District.

Bligh Bay District 1828


Bligh Bay circa 1828


Thames Beach and Elizabeth Lake 1828


New Settlements in Hillsborough District

The new road between Hillsborough and the settlement at Bligh Bay saw expansion of the farming settlements east of Hillsborough at the new township of Steyne while the townships of Hillsborough and Carriagevale continued to grow in population to the point Hillsborough had become the second largest township in the district (overtaking Sealers Cove). Compared to the housing in Flinders Landing, most of the development was of small farmhand cottages to service the surrounding farmland.

Hillsborough District 1828


Hillsborough Township 1828


New Settlements outposts at Haven and Fleet Town

To ease the pressure due to population growth on land around Flinders Landing, new outposts were set up at Haven (inside Flinders Harbour) and at Fleet Town (outside the entrance to the Grenville River). A new ferry service, linking townships inside the harbour to Flinders Landing and Bligh Bay, allowed for the expansion of settlements outside of the existing road network.


Upstream from Flinders Landing, the clear fresh water of Flinders Harbour and the ferry service proved a boon to those that moved to Haven. A small port developed at a wide cove at the junction between two rivers and farms quickly developed close to the port to take advantage of access to transportation.

Haven 1828


Fleet Town

Located just outside the entrance to the Grenville River, the small settlement of Fleet Town grew quickly as the first port of call for ships making their way to Port Jackson further up the east coast. The proximity to Flinders Landing and the new ferry service allowed for the unloading of supplies at Fleet Town without large ships having to navigate the Grenville River which reduced delays to their onward passage to Port Jackson. A number of coves around Fleet Town would also be suitable for the development of port facilities if needed.

Fleet Town 1828



Reply to Comments

Vivapanda, Benedict, Schulmanator, NMUspidey : Thanks, Thanks, Thanks & Thanks! :D

1824 : A Criminal Act


Flinders Harbour 6,481

Flinders Landing 3,713

Sealers Cove 1,466

Hillsborough 1,302

Transportation Act of 1822 (Hobart Town and Flinders Harbour penal settlements)

In 1821, a fleet from England sought to consult the District administration. It had been well known that England was nervous that her possessions in New South Wales and Van Diemens Land could be easily annexed by a rival European nation. A the same time, the loss of colonies in North America had seen the prison population swell and although the colonies of Port Jackson and Hobart Town had taken a significant number of convicts, England wished to expand transportation to the colonies to boost their population and ease the overcrowding in its prisons. A request from the Parliament of the UK to the district administration allowing for the settlement of convicts in Flinders Landing was presented.

In less than 10 years, the population of Flinders Landing had reached over 6,000 people but compared to the colony at Port Jackson (29,000), both Flinders Landing and Hobart Town (also about 6,000 people) were still very small backwaters of the Empire. Before arriving in Flinders Landing, the fleet from England had anchored at the settlement in Hobart Town which agreed to the expansion of its penal colony to take in more convicts so they could open up the plains around Hobart for farming.

Fearing that Flinders Landing, which already had a critical shortage of farmhands, would stagnate without increased migration from England, the district administration held a town meeting to seek approval from the townsfolk. After heated arguments between many people, the townsfolk in attendance agreed 55% to 45% in favour of allowing for the construction of a convict barracks in Flinders Landing to serve as a staging post for the deployment of labour for the district and to help increase the district's viability as a settlement. On return to England in 1822, the Transportation Act was signed by both houses of Parliament and provision was set forth for materials, redcoats and labourers (along with the convicts) for the journey to Flinders Landing.

Signing of the Transportation Act 1822


Waterloo Point Barracks

Named in honour of the victory over Napoleon achieved at Waterloo, the first stage of the Waterloo Point Barracks were constructed between 1822 and 1824. Built on a rocky outcrop on the Grenville River, the location was perfect for being both close to Flinders Landing but separated from the main settlements by a narrow causeway and the Monarch Docks.

Waterloo Point Barracks 1824


Soldiers Hill settlement

To house the redcoats and labourers that arrived to construct and work at the barracks, a new settlement was constructed at Soldiers Hill, half way between the barracks and Flinders Landing. Although the steep sloping hill proved a challenge, the views over the Grenville River proved popular and housing was quickly constructed to service the arriving ships from England.

Soldiers Hill 1824


A small sentry post (on the right of the picture) on the road to the barracks


Soldiers Hill & Waterloo Point Barracks circa 1824


Flinders Landing 1824 :

The population of Flinders Landing had grown slowly to just over 6,000 people by 1824. In the past three years, the main settlements at Pyrmont, Grenville Town and Georgewater had all expanded slightly and the farmland had begun to push inland away from the river bank. Additional housing at Tower Hill, the expansion of industrial land at Monarch Docks, and the new settlement of Soldiers Hill were the main extensions to the built up area of Flinders Landing during this time.

Flinders Landing 1824


Other Events :

Completion of the Great Western Road between Flinders Landing and Sealers Cove (1823)

New settlement : Carriagevale 1822

Map of Flinders Harbour 1824



1821 : The Great Western Road

Population 1821

Flinders Harbour 4,221

Flinders Landing 2,612

Sealers Cove 963

Hillsborough 646

March 1819 : The Thames

In March 1819, a ferry (The Thames) running passengers and goods from Sealers Cove to Flinders Landing left in the morning in sunny and warm weather on its twice weekly run between the settlements. Unbeknown to all on board The Thames, a storm approaching from the West would make this one ferry trip no one would ever forget. About half way between Sealers Cove and Flinders Landing (near a large island), the wind picked up and storm clouds gathered. Unable to make it back to Sealers Cove and not being close enough to Flinders Landing to reach a safe harbour, The Thames attempted to seek refuge in a large bay on the other side of the island. A series of huge swells battered The Thames, forcing it to run aground on the mainland but in rough seas. As many of the passengers were unable to swim, 26 people lost their lives that day in the frantic attempt to disembark. Most of the goods onboard were wrecked or swept out to sea. Of the 11 survivors, 3 followed the coast into Flinders Landing and alerted the townsfolk to the unfolding tragedy. Altough a search party set out on foot immediately, there was little that could be done to salvage the wreckage. The remaining 8 survivors who had huddled on the beach were taken back to Flinders Landing to recouperate. The tragedy that was The Thames reinforced to both settlements that there was an urgent need to build a road connection so they would no longer be at the mercy of the seas.

The Thames as it ran aground in the surf.


The Great Western Road circa 1821

By the time of the Thames tragedy, the beginnings of a road between Sealers Cove and Flinders Landing was already underway. The influx of new settlers and their unmet demand to open up pastures for crop and livestock saw an expansion of the settlements along the coast. As land near the settlements was filling up with farms and housing, the push inland to seek unclaimed land intensified.

After the shipwreck, a renewed effort (beginning at Georgewater) saw the road extended approximately half way towards Sealers Cove to the West. Similarly, the road begun to extend from Sealers Cove, heading North East of the settlement. Approximately half way between the settlements, a new township (Hillsborough) was founded and land along the road towards Georgewater was quickly settled.

The Great Western Road circa 1821


Sealers Cove

By 1821, the settlement of Sealers Cove had a population of nearly 1,000 people. The original settlement, based mainly on the trade of seal products, grew rapidly and small farms sprang up along the Great Western Road which was being extended towards Hillsborough and Flinders Landing. A small settlement at Haberfield grew up to service the surrounding farms. At the start of 1819, a ferry terminal was constructed to improve the cartage of passengers and goods between Sealers Cove and Flinders Landing. Sealers Cove circa 1821

Sealers Cove circa 1821


The new settlement of Hillsborough

In 1820, the construction of the Great Western Road saw the establishment of a new settlement approximately half way between Sealers Cove and Flinders Landing. The influx of settlers to Flinders Harbour and the fertile soil saw Hillsborough rapidly develop as a major new town in the district. Unlike the other settlements of Flinders Harbour, Hillsborough was developed on a formal axis with plenty of land set aside to accommodate future civic building requirements.

Hillsborough Settlement


An improved docks area for Flinders Landing

Although the wharf in Flinders Landing had been coping adequately with the growth of the town, the need for a place for ferries to dock and an urgent need for space for cottage industries to process the raw materials and farm produce meant that the docks would require siginifcant expansion to cope with future demand. The fishing industry had also expanded and required its own landing.

in 1819, the townsfolk organised a working group to construct a greatly expanded wharf which would allow for the expansion of industry and commerce well into the future while providing a place for the townsfolk to rest and relax in their free time. Several commerical buildings were also constructed close to the wharf to take advantage of the passing trade.

Dock facilities at Flinders Landing circa 1821


A new settlement at Pyrmont

As the land and settlements closer to Flinders Landing began to fill up, the need for agricultural land saw the development of a new settlement at Pyrmont (to the east of Grenville Town). A road was extended along the steeply sloping coastline towards a spit of land near the entrance to the grenville River. Being closer to the coast, Pyrmont would also serve as a vantage point to spot ships coming into Flinders Landing.

Pyrmont settlement 1821


Growth of Flinders Landing

As the population of Flinders Landing rapidly expanded (the population tripled between 1818 and 1821), the need to house the new arrivals saw the expansion of existing settlements. Grenville Town, Georgewater and Flinders Landing all expanded in size but the most pronounced change was in Flinders Landing. A number of farms near the town centre were replaced with housing while open land near the water was cleared for the construction of small cottage industries to service Flinders Harbour and other colonies in New South Wales and Van Diemens Land.

Map of Flinders Landing showing new housing and industry


Map of Flinders Landing District circa 1821


Message from the Motherland : April 1821

In April 1821, A fleet of ships from England sailed their way up the Grenville River and docked in Flinders Landing. This unexpected visit and the request delivered to the local administrators, which was the cause of many an argument between townsfolk for years to come, would have a profound effect on the development of Flinders Harbour.


Replies to Comments

Paulobergonci : Thanks for the comments Paulo! Just checked out your CJ and I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone “carving” out open fields and then placing farms in them quite like you.... it’s almost sculptural. As a big fan of all things South American and having been to Sao Paulo/Rio before, I think I’ll be following your CJ too! ;)

hahei : Hi Hahei, I hope this CJ brings back a good memory or two of your stay in Australia and although it will be inspired mostly by my home city/state of Melbourne and Victoria, I’ll try and incorporate ideas or storylines from other Australian cities too where possible.

vivapanda : I really like historical CJs too. My favourite “Historical” CJ from many years ago was “Digby : East Coast Region” (does it even exist on Simtrop now?) and I think that has inspired all my creations ever since. My favourite CJs are those that tell a story and I guess that is what I’m going to try and create here... perhaps not with bike lanes though for at least a 100 odd years. ;). Your bike tour method of highlighting parts of your city is something I’ll keep in mind... nice work on that one!

Schulmanator : You have time to comment in between your CJ updates?... Impressive! *laughs*. I hope you enjoy this CJ, my passion is urban planning/design/history so my CJ will take a different course to many on here but it won’t quite be the eye-candy/OMG that is Schulmania unfortunately lol. Regardless of that, here’s hoping the story makes up for the lack of eye-candy... hahaha

skyscraper241 : Thanks for your comments “Benny” ;) , I guess my CJ will start very small scale and build up much further down the track. As I get more involved in CJ-ing, I’ll built up more of an inventory of custom content but for now, I kind of like the maxis content for its simplicity which I find befitting of a small “nowheresville”. The other benefit is that maxis content is generally "building style" specific so you don't get too many modern glass buildings popping up in the early 1800s if you only select Chicago building style. I’ve had a bit of an aversion to large amounts of custom content for the stability issues it causes SC4 so I’ll look to introducing it gradually. That said, you’ll start to see a bit more variety in Flinders Harbour as it develops and gathers steam – I’ll take your comment as a challenge ;)

Flinders Harbour 1818


Population : 1,444

Flinders Landing 1,226

Sealers Cove 218

1818 : Map of the District of Flinders Harbour with main settlements


May 1816 : The Visitors

On a cool and foggy autumn morning, 3 ships from France sailed up the Grenville River and anchored just offshore at Flinders Landing. Fearing an invasion, the local regiment of 20 redcoats and many settlers hastily gathered near the docks in expectation of trouble. Luckily for the settlers, the ships were on their way to Port Jackson to stock up on supplies but decided to stop short when they saw a fishing vessel heading back into the harbour as supplies of water and food were running critically low.

Although much animosity was directed towards the French due to the recent Napoleonic wars, the retail district around the docks made a handsome profit in trade of food, rum and assorted other novelty items like stuffed Koala and Kangaroo skins. After anchoring in Flinders Cove for 5 days, the French departed to a wave off from over half of the townsfolk and many a happy shop keeper.

The French ships anchored in Flinders Cove


June 1816 : The Response

Although the visit of French ships was perhaps the biggest event to happen at Flinders Landing since it was settled, the redcoats and colonial administration in Port Jackson took alarm at the French presence in the area and the inability to defend these new outposts against any potential aggression. Message was sent to London about the incident and asked for any assistance that could be afforded in bolstering the settlements in New South Wales and Van Diemens Land.

October 1817 : A Message and Gift from London

On October 20, a fleet of 10 ships entered the harbour bearing great news for Flinders Landing - King George declared it an official town of the Empire and administrative capital of Flinders Harbour District by letter patent. Of even bigger news to Flinders Landing was that several of the ships in the harbour contained materials for the construction of a Town Hall and a watch tower to look out over the Grenville River entrance to Bass Strait as a protection messure for the town. Construction of the Town Hall was completed by February 1818 and the watch tower completed by May of that year. The small peninsula on which they were constructed became known as Tower Hill.

Tower Hill showing the newly constructed watch tower and Town Hall.


Further expansion of settlement at Flinders Landing

By late 1818, Flinders Landing had grown to over 1200 citizens. Many of the localities took on names in honour of the British aristocracy, Governors of New South Wales and one for the family who originally settled that part of Flinders Landing (The Mors). Of particular note were the two newer settlements at Grenville Town and Georgewater as they had a small commerical area to serve the local inhabitants.

A map of Flinders Landing showing settlements and important features


Georgewater is on the right of the picture, and the locality of Pitt Junction on the left.


Grenville Town


December 1817 : The Development of Sealers Cove and the Seal Trade.

Since the first explorations of Bass & Flinders along the coast of Bass Strait near Flinders Harbour, the abundance of seals in the area was well known to bands of whalers, pelt and fur traders operating the southern oceans. In early 1817, a small settlement grew up in a cove near 2 islands just off the coast that were heavily populated with seals and herons. The establishment of the fur trade and a small soap manufactory at Sealers Cove proved a big boost to the local economy and the trade of food, fibre, furs and soap between the two settlements proved beneficial for both.

The Seal Islands in Bass Strait, just south of the entrance to Sealers Cove.


The small settlement of Sealers Cove, showing the docks, soap manufactory and fur traders sheds.



Flinders Landing Settlement : 1815

The first 2 years of settlement at Flinders Landing saw the establishment of a small village surrounded by farms. The population had grown from the original 307 settlers to 458 due the arrival of a small band of people from a failed settlement in the Port Philip District further to the west and the birth of many children.

As there are no medical clinics and only one doctor for the whole settlement, many newborns were lost. One of the main complaints of the settlers in 1815 were the lack of facilities. Port Jackson was several hundred kilometres away and the other main settlement of Hobart suffered the same problems as Flinders Landing.


The abundant supplies of timber in the district proved bountiful for the settlers. The housing and most of the main buildings were able to be quickly constructed and the clearance of the forests allowed for the establishment of farms. Most of the housing developed close to Flinders Cove where the ships pulled in. A small commercial area developed on the road to the docks to service the ships coming to port.


After a few incidents at Flinders Cove, where one of the settlers (Sally Colbraith) from the Port Philip District fell and slipped in the mud while trying to disembark and a few kegs of rum for the redcoats were lost overboard, it was decided that Flinders Landing needed a dock. A small timber dock was built in Flinders Cove to improve the unloading of supplies and passengers. Unbeknown to Sally, they still laugh at her misfortune down at the beetroot stall on Cove Street where she is referred to as "Swamp Creature Sally".

The redcoats also demanded a place be built to serve as a police barracks and public administration building so in 1814, a small wooden public administration building was built close to the docks to house these functions until a permanent facility could be established. Being close to farmer paddy's potato field (over the road) was also convenient as he was always complaining about his potatoes going missing so being close to the scene of the crime made the redcoat's job just a little bit easier.



The Year is 1813

The settlement at Port Jackson (Sydney) in the colony of New South Wales has been successfully established and after early problems, convicts and free settlers are beginning to arrive from England to establish outposts in other parts of the great southern land.

In 1799, Flinders explored the southern coast of New South Wales and discovered the strait between Van Diemens Land and New South Wales, which he subsequently named Bass Strait in honour of his friend and fellow explorer George Bass. As part of this journey, the southern coast of New South Wales was explored and potential sites for settlement recorded. The southern coast contained many bays and harbours and of a notable mention was of a harbour "with many an island, that could host a thousand ships in safety and

provide all the essentials for a settlement, such as fresh water and good soil for agriculture".

Location of that harbour on the southern coast of New South Wales


Upon return to England in 1810, Flinders spread word of the fertile plains and potential for settlement of the southern coast. In 1812, a party of free settlers set sail from Portsmouth, with plentiful supplies and the aim of setting up an agricultural outpost at the harbour they named Flinders Harbour. In March 1813, after a tortuous journey of 5 months, the fleet of 6 ships arrived at Flinders Harbour.


The passage of Southern Ocean and Bass Strait was marred by gales and high seas, but the colonists finally made it to the shelter of Flinders Harbour and anchored just off the shore inside the harbour in a small bay surrounded by tall stands of exotic trees and untouched wilderness. Suitably impressed by the small harbour, the Lieutenant Grenville ( a cousin of the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) proclaimed the site "A good place for a village" and landed with a fleet of soldiers on the southern banks of the harbour near a small cairn set up by Flinders on his previous journeys.


A working party was sent to explore the local terrain to map out important features. A small boat was sent further into the harbour to check out the local water ways and reported back that as the landing site was surrounded by water on three sides, it was a defensible position against possible attack from native persons while providing ample fresh water and fertile soil. After a meeting with the colonists, the site was agreed as the place of settlement and the settlers disembarked ship and set up camp at what was proclaimed Flinders Landing.



About this CJ

My aim with the CJ is to emulate the growth of a colony in 18th century Australia. It is loosely based on the region of Gippsland in Eastern Victoria (although the map is not from that region) and I'll try to incorporate the politics and factors for growth of Australian colonies if and when I can.. although I plan to take plenty of liberties with history (as you'll see in the post above). :D

Although I will mostly be using Maxis content, I will add custom content if I find it is necessary for adding a level of realism that would otherwise be lacking. I don't have the time to create my own custom content or spend hours working out the dependencies for extensive use of others custom content, so you will unfortunately see some really wierd stuff like shops with giant twirling pizzas and car parking circa early 1800s.... I guess that is the limitation I (and hopefully you) can learn to live with.... hahaha


Base Map : St Johns by Bmag_20 (Can be found here on Simtropolis) - Although I've gone and terraformed it slightly :D .

Other pics (Historical) : Wikipedia commons (non-copyrighted)

Custom content : A huge thanks to all the people who've created custom content, you make Simcity what it is, you are the reason we are getting Simcity 5 and you are the reason i'm still SimCity4-ing 10 years since release! Mega thanks to all!


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