Over 45 pubs once serviced the thirsty gold mining town of Kalgoorlie

foundry hotel kalgoorlie wa 1935 WA LIbrary
Foundry Hotel, Maritana-street Kalgoorlie, Western Australia 1935. Photo: State Library of Western Australia

LEGEND has it that at one time you couldn’t throw a stone in Kalgoorlie without hitting a hotel. Here’s a list of pubs that traded in the Western Australian gold mining town in the mid 1890s, put together in 1941 by a newspaper contributor by the name of ‘Count Kanowna’ from Salmon Gums. Salmon Gums is a small town in Western Australia, located 106km north of Esperance on the Coolgardie-Esperance Highway. The Perth newspaper, the Western Mail published the list on May 15 1941:

“OLD hands delight in ferreting around in their minds for the names of the pubs that slaked dust-caked throats in Kalgoorlie 45 years ago. With the help of Mr, W. C. J. Hill, pioneer goldfields publican and well known horseman, I have compiled a list of pubs that flourished within a radius of two miles of the Kalgoorlie Post Office in the nineties.”

Here is the list by street name, 47 in all:

  • Hannan-street, left-hand side going west: Federal; Goldfields (delicensed) ; Criterion (delicensed – now Savoy Cafe); Broken Hill (delicensed); Exchange; Palace; Victoria; Oriental; York; Globe (delicensed); Marble Bar (delicensed); Kalgoorlie; and Star and Garter. There were three wine and beer saloons Daly’s, Alderdice’s and Armanasco’s.
  • Hannan-street, right-hand side going west: Duke of Cornwall (W. C. J. Hill proprietor three times); Crown Shades (delicensed, bar was underground, and hence pub was known as the “Dug-Out”) ; Grand (built by Stevenson); Central (delicensed – also known as the Black Swan and City); Australia; Commercial; White Heart (delicensed); National (delicensed, Jerry McAuliffe, proprietor) ; Shamrock (delicensed, Faddy Whelan, proprietor); and Home from Home (renamed Hannans after Kalgoorlie riots of 1934 when it was burnt by rioters).
  • Brookman-street: West Kalgoorlie: Golden District (delicensed).
  • Dugan-street: Her Majesty’s (next to Tivoli Theatre, delicensed).
  • Forrest-street: Torbay Arms (delicensed, opposite goods sheds) ; Telluride (delicensed); Queensland (delicensed): Royal (delicensed); Inland City (previously the Champion, name changed by Mr. Hill); Railway.
  • Piccadilly-street: Piccadilly; Locomotive (delicensed – on the flat opposite the Queensland and Telluride).
  • Maritana-street: Tower; Great Boulder (delicensed); Surrey (delicensed); Maritana (delicensed); Mt. Lyell; Foundry; Half-Way (delicensed).
  • Macdonald-street: Union Club; and Commonwealth (delicensed).
  • Cheetham-street: Gala; Racecourse (delicensed, near Kalgoorlie racecourse).
  • Outridge-terrace: Glen Devon (de-licensed); British Arms (delicensed). Parkeston: Rising Sun Hotel (Bull Bennit, proprietor).
  • Williamstown: (Mr Hill, proprietor).

Forty-five years ago there were 47 pubs to about 15,000 to 20,000 people. Today, [1941] within a radius of two miles of the post office 23 pubs serve a population of between 12,000 and 15,000.


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Categories: Western Australia hotels

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2 replies

  1. Looking for a photo of the rising sun hotel Parkeston. Can you help.

  2. Piccadilly St…..Error , Locomotive Hotel was in Wittenoom St Kalgoorlie …. In fact it was located at number 68 Wittenoom St opposite the railway sheds… I know this as this is where I was living in my early days in Kalgoorlie.

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