Mount Ousley
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Mount Ousley

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Page sections: Land Grants  | Timeline


Traditional Custodians of Illawarra Land

Local communities of Aboriginal people were the original inhabitants and Traditional Custodians of Illawarra Land. Their dialect is a variant of the Dharawal language. Before European settlement, the Aboriginal people of the region lived in small family groups with complicated social structures and close associations with specific areas. Suburb boundaries do not reflect the cultural boundaries of the local Aboriginal community. Traditional Custodians today are descendants of the original inhabitants and have ongoing spiritual and cultural ties to the Land and waterways where their ancestors lived.


It is believed that Mount Ousley was named after Ousley Condell who owned land in the area from 1839-43. It is also possible that Mount Ousley was named after an early Methodist preacher called Gideon Ouseley. The Kiama Reporter of 31/1/1900 mentions the death of a John Armstrong and states that he once lived on a government block of land "near Mount Keira" and "was wont to describe services in his father's house by that prince of early Methodist preachers, Gideon Ousley". There is a "Life of Gideon Ouseley" written by William Arthur and published by the Wesleyan Conference Office, London in 1976. A copy of this book is held in the Methodist Historical Society Library in Sydney.

Land grants

In 1839, five acres of William Wilson's 60 acre grant "at Keira Illawarra" was conveyed to Ousley Condell of Sydney. Wilson's 60 acres was an area immediately west of the Princes Highway at Fairy Meadow and extended from the southern boundary of the parish to Cabbage Tree Lane. The land conveyed to Ousley Condell was "apparently a long narrow block running back to the west of the highway just south of Mount Ousley Road". Ousley Condell owned this land from 1839-43 and it is believed that Mount Ousley was named after him. There is, however, another theory about the origin of the name Ousley.


 Mount Ousley - Timeline

5 acres of William Wilson's 60 acre grant at 'Keira Illawarra' conveyed to Ousley Condell of Sydney, who owned the land until 1843 (Suburb profile)
Mount Ousley estate sold (Ill. Merc., 13/4/1883)
Aquila Parsons elected to the North Illawarra Municipal Council (Illawarra Index)
Tour conducted through Alderman W.K. Bate's brick factory; in its sixth year of production (Illawarra Index)
Strone House on MacArthur Avenue built (Local cuttings file)
Aquila Parsons death at his residence on January 21st (Illawarra Index)
Bushfires swept through Mount Keira, Mount Ousley, Balgownie and Bellambi, and threatened homes. Residents burnt breaks around the properties in danger (Illawarra Index)
Mount Ousley Progress Association formed (Illawarra Index)
Council adopted long sought road schemes, which included the building of Foothills Road (Illawarra Index)
Safety ramp at the foot of Mount Ousley completed (Illawarra Index)
Mount Ousley Public School opened ("Ever higher": the history of Mount Ousley Public School, 1959-1999, LR371.01 EVE)
Section of the By-pass Road, which leads from Mount Ousley Road to the existing Wollongong By-pass, opened for traffic (Illawarra Index)
Mount Ousley Convalescent Hospital opened (Ill. Merc., 26/11/1969)
'The Corals', just off Mount Ousley Road, was sold at auction for $81,000; believed to be the highest amount paid for a private home on the South Coast (Illawarra Index)
Flash flood in Wollongong and surrounding areas; stormwater surged through Mount Ousley homes (Illawarra Index)
Experimental underground drainage system used to try and save Mount Ousley Pass from further land slippage (Illawarra Index)
Baringa, a new hostel for mentally ill and disabled children, opened (Illawarra Index)
'Wave-like' concrete sound barriers, representing 'mountains to the sea', erected on Mount Ousley Road (Illawarra Index)
Official dedication of the sculpture 'Celebration', which celebrates the region's multicultural fabric; a gift from BHP to the City of Wollongong (Illawarra Index)
Fire at historic [Strone] house (Local cuttings file)
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