The town developed at the crossing place on King River.
In 1862 the Oxley Road Board was formed to make the roads and bridges. Bridges were a major priority. The King and Oxley Rivers had to be crossed but even floods caused major problems in the area. The roads were almost impassable in winter; particulaly to bullock drays and horse drawn coaches.
The police station was opened in 1866
Representatives from Oxley attended a major meeting to plan for the coming of the railways (Argus15/7/67)
In 1870 a school was opened half way between Milawa and Oxley.
The slab Methodist Church was one of the earliest churches in the area. The Presbyterian Church building was started in 1866 and St Pauls Anglican church in 1873
Importance of Oxley
Oxley became the administrative centre from 1866.
The area was popular with selectors (Argus8/10/66)
Andrew Byrne was the President of the Oxley Shire Council (OMA4/5/1879)
What was Oxley like in the late 1870s
With the discovery of gold Oxley developed with blacksmiths, hotels, schools, shops a police station. Oxley was on the route to Beechworth (via Everton and Greta) and the Buckland River in the north and Melbourne (via Winton) in the south.
See the cricket score (OMA13/2/1879)
Oxley's swamp could be a real problem (Argus24/11/68)
Facilities at Oxley in the late 1870s
Population Hotels Dunlop's, Oxley Hotel,
Bourkes Churches Methodist, Presbyterian, Anglican Schools Oxley school formed in 1861
James Wallace was the school teacher in the 1870s.
'Bank Bank of Victoria at Oxley Bridge Main Streets Oxley was the headquarters of the shire of Oxley Local Government Police Station ' Telegraph Office
Oxley Coursing Club (OMA5/6/1880)
Oxley Cricket Team
Pound Keeper, George William Kennedy 1876
Chinese wheelwright (Argus9/6/80)
Cemetry - Trustees
Links to the KellyGang
Ned Kelly's grandfather James Quinn is buried in the Oxley cemetery
There were reports that the KellyGang had decided in mid August 1879 that they would not try the Oxley bank as there is too many police there- two troopers every morning when the bank opens; and another drawback, the ground is too soft. (RC14791)
The police received information in 1880 that the KellyGang were going to take Oxley bank, but we afterwards heard that, on account of their seeing three policemen there in the morning when the bank opened, they thought it would not be worth while for the amount of money they would get there. (RC13855)
Members of the Oxley community
Councillors R Wood and D Evans (Argus15/7/67)
The Oxley cricket team included William Allen, William McAliece, A and J Hume, G Heney, W J Whitehall, C W Lloyd, M Reid, H Fisher, C McKenzie, J Gardner, and R Gray. (OMA13/2/1879)
William Allen Hon Sec Oxley Coursing Club (OMA5/6/1880)
William Moore, F Heach and D McCallum impounded a large number of horses in 1876
What happened at Oxley after the time of the Kelly Gang
What is happening at Oxley today
For most people Oxley is now a loverly little town that they pass through on the way between the Hume Highway and the gourmet food area around Milawa.