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Broadmeadows Local History

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The Local History of Broadmeadows, Victoria

Broadmeadows is a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, located approximately 16 km north of the city center. It is also the administrative center of the City of Hume. The suburb's name originates from the broad meadow that was located nearby in the early days of European settlement.

The area surrounding Broadmeadows was originally inhabited by the Wurundjeri people, who were part of the Kulin nation. They were a nomadic people who lived off the land and hunted kangaroos, possums, wallabies, and other animals in the area that is now the suburb of Broadmeadows.

In 1836, John Batman, a settler and businessman from Tasmania, arrived in Port Phillip Bay and established a base near present-day Melbourne. He negotiated with the local Aboriginal people to purchase land, including the area that is now the suburb of Broadmeadows. Batman's treaty was later declared invalid by the British government, and the land was opened up for free settlement.

By the 1840s, the first European settlers had arrived in the area, and a village began to develop around the Broadmeadows Common. The village had a post office, a hotel, a school, and several houses and shops.

During the gold rush of the 1850s, many people came to Victoria seeking their fortune. Broadmeadows became an important stopover point on the way to the goldfields, and the village grew rapidly. The population grew from around 200 in 1851 to over 1,000 by 1861.

Broadmeadows continued to grow in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with new housing developments, schools, and businesses. The railway arrived in 1872, making it easier for people to travel to and from Melbourne. The Broadmeadows Military Camp was established in 1914, and during World War I, it was used as a training camp for soldiers before they were sent to fight overseas.

During the 1950s and 1960s, Broadmeadows underwent significant urbanization, with the construction of many new housing estates and the establishment of new industries. The Broadmeadows Town Hall was built in 1960, and the Broadmeadows Shopping Center opened in 1966, which was the largest shopping center in Australia at the time.

Today, Broadmeadows is a bustling suburb with a diverse population, many amenities, and a rich history. The local council and community groups are working to preserve and promote the suburb's heritage, including the Broadmeadows Historical Society, which collects and preserves artifacts and stories related to the area's history.

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