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Silverton Gaol Museum in the school holidays

“When you travel with both teenage & primary school aged kids, what to see and do can get complicated. All age groups enjoyed this overloaded and well-documented [Silverton] Goal experience.”

This was a comment from a visitor who had brought their kids to our region on a holiday, and stopped at Broken Hill Historical Society’s (BHHSoc) Silverton Gaol Museum.

It’s still school holidays this week and next week for a couple of Aussie states (NSW, SA), so it’s a comment to think about. This museum has several activities especially for primary aged kids, and if a teenage schoolie can’t find a project here, that will be a tad unusual.

For primary kids, the museum has a hand-out ‘quiz’ that encourages them to go searching for historical treasures! If the museum assistant doesn’t hand one to primary aged kids as they enter, ask them at the desk for a copy.

It has an unusual multimedia display, too: a full size figure (dummy) of Richard O’Connell, the first person to take charge of the Silverton Police Station in 1880. If you ask the volunteer at the desk to press the right button, Richard will, in two minutes, tell you all about the very early days of Silverton!

“Overloaded” is a terrific way of trying to describe what’s in this museum, there’s just so much: from the old gaol’s hospital room, to a massive collection reflecting the mining histories of Broken Hill and Silverton, to old washing machines (yes really!), and a record of the life and times of world-renowned local soprano, June Bronhill. Diverse is the word. Add First Nations’ artefacts, drawings, grinding stones and axe heads, from the local Wilyakali/Paakantyi area, and you have thousands of years of history here.

Take some real time when you visit. You’ll need to. The Silverton Gaol Museum is open every day of the year (except for Xmas Day).

More info about Silverton Gaol Museum, including opening times and contacts, here.

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