'Bolivia – A Century and a Half' launched

(From left) Paul Schiffmann, Fay McCowen, Tony Bates, Debbie McCowen, Sandra Wilson and Ken Hutchison at the book launch in Bolivia Hall.
(From left) Paul Schiffmann, Fay McCowen, Tony Bates, Debbie McCowen, Sandra Wilson and Ken Hutchison at the book launch in Bolivia Hall.

The published history of the Bolivia district has received a dust-off and update in a new tome Bolivia – A Century and a Half officially launched at Bolivia Hall on Saturday, August 25.

The community effort spearheaded by Fay and Debbie McCowen and Sandra Wilson reviewed the 30-year-old earlier publication, editing, adding new content and adopting a new format to wrap up the colourful history of the district that boasts strong family ties.

“It looks good,” Mrs Wilson said.

“We’re very pleased with it.”

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The book follows the history from 1840 when Edward Hurry acquired the first pastoral licence for Bolivia Station, through all the owners until today.  It includes the railway and how it influenced the area, schools, post office, telephone exchange, hotels, properties and owners, war veterans and the lone pine, weddings, family gatherings, the annual Christmas tree, Bolivia cemetery, Bolivia Hill and the present day changes.  

Bolivia’s history runs the gamut of drought, floods and fire, all contained within the book’s 102 lively pages peppered with historic photographs. Stories were sourced from Bolivia residents and the Bolivia Hall history collection and printed by Tenterfield Printing.

Bolivia Progress Association vice president Ken Hutchison welcomed more than 70 people gathered at hall for the launch before Miss McCowen gave a condensed book review. 

Mayor Peter Petty spoke on behalf of council and Paul Schiffmann then described how the original book was compiled. Tony Bates, a descendant of the first white child born on Bolivia Station, spoke of his family and the local connections before launching the book, with afternoon tea following.

Mrs Wilson said the publication is very much a labour of love on behalf of those involved, and is the culmination of many months of hard work. Of the 300 copies printed in this edition, many have gone to Bolivia family and friends. 

Others wishing to get their hands on a copy can contact anyone in the Bolivia Progress Association. The cover price is $20.

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