Ross, Tasmania

Tasmania is full of quaint and interesting 19th century colonial towns. On my way from Bicheno to Launceston I decided to take a detour through Ross, which would become my favourite. According to Tasmania’s Tourism Website, Ross is arguably the finest nineteenth century village in Australia. It is home to just 300 people and is centred around Church street and the main crossroads.

There are a total of 40 historic buildings in Ross (to do the village justice get a proper map or a copy of ‘Let’s Talk About Ross’) of which no fewer than 22 are located on Church Street. Coming into town I drove to the end of Church street (just past the crossroads and at the start of the path to the female factory and cemetaries) and started walking from here. I first visited the Ross Female Factory, the new and old cemeteries then circled back to the Crossroads and the Bridge ending with some shopping at the start of Church Street where right off the main street in town I walked by some sheep in someone’s side yard.

Ross Female Factory

Between 1848 and 1854 approximately 12,000 female convicts passed through the Ross Female Factory. Most of the buildings are no longer standing, but you can walk through the inside of the remaining building and it is pretty depressing. It was for convict women and their children, some who were restricted to the grounds and some who were hired out as help.


The Crossroads

The main crossroads of the village is said to represent “Temptation” (Man O’Ross Hotel), “Recreation” (Town Hall), “Salvation” (Catholic Church) and “Damnation” (the jail).

Ross Bridge

This is the third oldest bridge in Australia (the oldest bridge in Australia is also in Tasmania – the Richmond Bridge). It was constructed by convicts in 1836, and the main stonemason who did the carvings was freed after the completion for his effort on the project.

Ross was a great detour, and I recommend a stop to anyone who is driving by, but it is quite small so a few hours is more than enough time to explore.

Love, Lee

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~ by loveleeeee on May 10, 2011.

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