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Traditional Custodians of Illawarra Land
Local communities of Aboriginal people were the original inhabitants and Traditional Custodians of Illawarra Land. Their dialect is a variant of the Dharawal language. Before European settlement, the Aboriginal people of the region lived in small family groups with complicated social structures and close associations with specific areas. Suburb boundaries do not reflect the cultural boundaries of the local Aboriginal community. Traditional Custodians today are descendants of the original inhabitants and have ongoing spiritual and cultural ties to the Land and waterways where their ancestors lived.
Mangerton was originally part of John Thompson's grant of 640 acres, called Glen Glosh. This property was later bought by Dr John Osborne and divided into Mangerton and Garden Hill.
Traditionally, Mangerton is said to have been named after a place in John Osborne's native county of Tyrone in Northern Ireland. However, no place of this name has been located in Tyrone. There are two other explanations for the naming of Mangerton. Firstly, there is a Mangerton in Liddesdale, Scotland. The Laird of Mangerton was chief of the Armstrongs and a James Armstrong had clearing leases on Dr John Osborne's Garden Hill estate. Secondly, a family member, who had spent time with Belle and Edith Osborne (Dr John Osborne's Grand-daughters), said that John Osborne had thought there was some resemblance between Wollongong and the Mangerton Hills in Ireland. This was where Dr John and his wife are believed to have spent their honeymoon.
Land grants - see Wollongong - Land grants
Early residents - see Wollongong - Early residents
Early industry - see Wollongong - Early industry
Early transport - see Wollongong - Early transport
Mangerton - Historic buildings
Address: 27 Mangerton Road
The original Matchett home was purchased with three acres of land soon after the family arrived from Victoria in May, 1926
Address: Mangerton Road
Architect: James Hughes (Hugh) Britten
Hugh Britten was a local architect with a considerable corpus of work in Wollongong. Built in 1936, this was Hugh Britten’s own home, an early Wollongong example of the Inter-War Functionalist style (sometimes known as the Ocean Liner style). Britten used his characteristic rectilinear and curved forms, wide overhanging eaves and roof-concealing parapets. In this design the facetted arrangement of the continuous windows in the semicircular bay is notable. This house has been altered since the Brittens lived here but the essence of his style is still clearly evident. (Irving, 2001, p.67)
Address: Norman Street
Designer: Cecil Francis
Builder: John Luborg
Orana is an Aboriginal name meaning ‘Welcome”. This splendid home was built in 1952 and it epitomises the Functionalist style. The design exploits the steep slope and takes a calculated account of solar angles to provide shade in the summer and warmth in the winter. The flat roof provides access to admire the distant views. The lowest storey was originally an exposed column-and-beam structure. (Irving, 2001, p.97)
Mangerton - Environment
Although Mangerton is primarily a residential suburb of Wollongong, its most dominant environmental feature is Mangerton Park. The Park is a remnant of the original vegetation of this part of the coastal plain and includes turpentine woodland in the higher parts and sub tropical rainforest in the wetter downslope. The 4.5 hectare area provides important habitat for the many native animals that have suffered from the pressure of urban development. A wide variety of birds, mammals and reptiles rely on this area for their survival. Weed invasion is a serious threat to the Parks ecology. Restoring and maintaining the Park has been been a long term project spanning decades and has been largely due to the The Friends of Mangerton Park, working through Wollongong Council’s Bushcare program and in collaboration with the local community. (Local cuttings file)
Mangerton Park has a great diversity of flora. Studies have identified 54 species of trees and shrubs, 23 species of climbers and 39 species of ground covers, herbs and ferns. This diversity of flora supports over 70 species of birds that use the park either as residents or as a migration stop over.
In 1993 The National Trust awarded The Friends of Mangerton Park an Environmental Trust Scheme Grant and in 1995, they were awarded Total Catchment Management Enhancement funding. These grants and the continuing support of the Bushcare program have been invaluable in the regeneration and long term restoration of Mangerton Park. (Davis, 1995)