Snapshot in Time: Life frozen in time at Narra Tarra in Chapman Valley

Staff reporterGeraldton Guardian
Narra Tarra kitchen.
Camera IconNarra Tarra kitchen. Credit: Peter Aarts

Today’s step back in time takes us back to the heritage-listed Narra Tarra homestead, within Chapman Valley, a relic from what life would have been like in the mid-1800s.

In photographs taken by the late Peter Aarts in 1994 — of the kitchen and outside the homestead — you can see how frozen in time the property is.

Built from 1853 and overlooking the undulating land of Chapman Valley and East Chapman River, Narra Tarra — with its two homesteads, kitchen outbuildings, store, quarters, machinery stores, shearing sheds and cemetery — was placed on the State heritage register in 2003.

The Heritage Council of WA states Narra Tarra is “indicative of the large pastoral leases of the 1850s and 1860s which were the earliest forms of European settlement in rural Western Australia, preceding closer agricultural settlement and the establishment of rural townships”.

“(It) contributes to the community’s sense of place because of its long association with farming in the region, and the participation of its various owners in the community life of the Chapman Valley.”

Its cemetery is one of the biggest of its kind on a station property in WA.

The property has been linked to just a handful of families between 1853 and 2002, including three generations of the family of Joseph Green and John Mills who established and operated Narra Tarra from 1853 to 1910, and three generations of the family of Frank Green Snr who were in charge from 1926 to 2002.

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Snapshots is an initiative of the Geraldton Regional Library. For more information, or to donate a historical photo or slide, contact 9956 6659 or library@cgg.wa.gov.au

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