wheat fields near Snowtown
A sleepy wheatbelt town centred around the
Snowtown is located 145 km north of Adelaide in
an area known for its ideal conditions for sheep
grazing and wheat growing. It is one of those
towns on the road north from Adelaide which is
very easy to drive through. Stop and admire the
old Institute building and the charming St
Canice's Catholic church.
The first pioneers arrived between 1867 and
1869. It was around this time that the old
Snowtown Pub (1868) was built. It wasn't until
1869 that the government took much interest in
the area. At this time they planned to establish
towns throughout the district and to divide the
land into much smaller holdings.
Snowtown is a small township which was
formally proclaimed by Governor Jervois in 1878.
Jervois named the town after one of the members
of the Snow family - probably Thomas who was
Jervois's aide de camp, although Sebastian Snow
as the Governor's Private Secretary.
It is located on a fertile plain between the
Mt Lofty Ranges and the Barunga Range.
The town's main street is Fourth Street which
is notable for the large number of attractive
public buildings - notably the Snowtown Memorial
Hall (1919) which is attached to the Old
Institute (1889). Over the road from the
Institute is the town's tribute to the pioneers
which tells the traveller that the town's
population is 520. Elevation is 103 metres and
it gets 389 mm of rainfall per annum.
The town achieved notoriety in 1999 when it
became the site of the largest serial killing in
Australia - a number of bodies were found in the
town's disused bank building. When added to
bodies found in a yard in suburban Adelaide the
total came to eleven.
Things to see:
Lochiel-Ninnes Rd Lookout
A fine lookout across Lake Bumbunga, a very
substantial salt lake. The lookout helps the
visitor to understand the nature of the area.