Golden Bay archaeological dig unearths century old artefacts

The City's archaeological dig at Peelhurst Ruins in Golden Bay unearthed several items. PICS: City of Rockingham

An archaeological dig at Peelhurst Ruins in Golden Bay has unearthed a number of century old artefacts.

The Peelhurst ruins are located on Dampier Drive and are the remnants of a stone cottage that was built in the 1860s for Thomas Peel Jr (Tom Peel), who was one of the first English settlers in Western Australia.

The ruin is included in the City’s Municipal Heritage Inventory and the site was gifted to the City in 1991. 

During the dig the City found several artefacts including a one shilling coin from 1880, two fully intact bottles (including a Rosella sauce bottle made between 1900 and 1920), a broken table plate that was later able to be pieced together with lettering ‘J. Cromie Hall of Commerce’ which was dated back to an advertisement to 1889, and a number of buttons.  

The majority of the artefacts at the ruins were found in a stone section, which archaeologists are still considering, but it may have been an old cellar or water well.

Mayor Deb Hamblin said the archaeological dig was guided by the City’s Heritage Strategy and the Peelhurst Ruins Conservation Management Plan, delivered under the supervision of archaeologists and heritage specialists. 

“Peelhurst Ruins are a significant heritage site in the City of Rockingham, and the public archaeological dig carried out with the help of volunteers from the community was held with the intent of unearthing potential historic artefacts,” Mayor Hamblin said. 

“The City was delighted to see community members attend and observe the dig, which gave visitors the chance to see how an archaeological excavation is set up, what sampling strategies are implemented and the types of tools that are used.

“The level of community interest and the positivity surrounding this archaeological dig was exciting for the City, and it clearly shows local residents are passionate about heritage in their community.”   


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