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Importance of sawmills

Sawmilling was an important industry in North Eastern Victoria right through the period of the KellyGang

From the begining Beechworth required large quantities of timber for the mines and the buildings in the town. The other mines and towns in the area. In the 1870s there was a large trade cutting sleepers for the new railway lines.

Sawmilling was hard work. Logs had to be cut in the bush by hand with a cross cut saw and snigged out to the sawmill by teams of horses or bullocks.

In the early years the longs were saw in pit saws but later the sawmills increasingly used steam engines to drive the saws to cut up the longs into planks.

The construction of the railway lines took lots of timber. Large timbers were needed for bridges and the track was laid on thousands of sleepers that were cut from local hardwood

Types of trees and uses


The KellyGang involvement with sawmills

After Ned Kelly was released from goal in early 1874 he got a number of jobs in logging camps and sawmills and stayed out of the way of the police for about 3 years.

Ned worked for J Saunders and R Rule and for Heach and Dockendorf. One of the sawmills was on Red Camp station near Glenmore run

Acocks sawmill was on Seven Mile Creek. (RC9870)