The Mont Albert District - a Pictorial History 1830 to 2013

1880s to 1920s

Indigenous Heritage
Geology and Topography
Vegetation and Fauna
Climate and Hydrology
1840s to 1870s
1850s - Parish of Nunawading
1852 - Whitehorse Inn
1861 - Postal Services
1880s - Electricity Supply
1880s to 1920s
1882 - Phantom Railways to Doncaster
1883 - Residential Heritage Precinct
1884 - Broughton Park subdivsion
1884 - Brickworks
1885 - Surrey Hills district - map
1888 - Football Clubs
1889 - Gas Supply and Gasworks
1889 - Doncaster Electric Tramway and Tower
1890 - Mont Albert Railway Station
1892 - Surrey Hills Golf Club
1892 - Water Supply, Reservoirs and Sewerage
1899 - Telephone Services
1905 - The Surrey Dive
1907 - Scouts and Guides
1912 - Mont Albert Village Shopping Precinct
1914 - Mont Albert Progress Association
1916 - Californian Bungalows
1917 - Schools
1917 - Wattle Park
1924 - Early Shortwave Broadcasting from the Surrey Hills district
1924 - Black's Estate
1925 - Bus Services
1929 - Tramways
1930 - Cricket Clubs in Mont Albert
1930s - Balwyn - Beckett Park Bonfires and Wildlife Sanctuary
1948 - Grange Tennis Courts
1957 - Pioneer Park
1961 - Surrey Hills Communications Tower
1981 - Box Hill Miniature Railway
Koonung Creek Parklands
Heritage Notes
Mont Albert Road - Early History
Mont Albert Rd - the East End
Elgar Rd - north and south of Mont Albert Rd
Mont Albert Rd - View St to Elgar Rd
Bushland Reserves
Service Associations
Sporting Clubs
Box Hill Institute of TAFE
Walking Trails
The Author's Websites
References and Acknowledgements

1882 - cartoon advertising land sales

1883 - land sale

1883 - Windsor Park subdivsion

1883 - Windsor Park subdivision

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1916 - dairy scene in Box Hill district

1895 - Box Hill Market

1907 - Windsor Crescent



The Land Boom of the 1880s was associated with the subdivision of most of the larger existing properties. Population growth saw the establishment of many local dairies.

After the 1890-1900 depression years the Land Boom had virtually ended, and many unsold lots were used as unofficial common ground for cattle grazing.

Prior to 1892, the district of Surrey Hills included most of present-day suburb of Mont Albert.

- Surrey Park ( Haughton's Paddock) was used for stabling of bullocks

1882 -  the railway from Camberwell to Lilydale was opened, which generated a frenzy of land sales of large estates in the Surrey Hills area. Surrey Hills station opened in 1882 and Mont Albert station in 1892.The area of what is now Whitehorse suddenly became a prime target for large-scale land development.

Subdivisions immediately sprung up around stations including Elgar Park Estate in Surrey Hills (1882) and the Railway Station Estate in Box Hill (1883).

The opening of the railway, and the subsequent beginnings of suburban subdivision, saw the first residential streets laid out, starting near Mont Albert and Box Hill railway stations, and stretching eastward along the railway line, although these were sparse east of Middleborough Road.

Another developer, the Freehold Investment and Banking Company, purchased a thousand acres in Blackburn for a proposed estate. Streets were laid out, community facilities were established and as a centrepiece, a watercourse was dammed to create Blackburn Lake.

Developers were less keen to subdivide land further east, in the Tunstall (now Nunawading) and Mitcham areas, although a few did appear along the north side of Whitehorse Road.

1882 a high observation tower was built in Canterbury Rd, near the site of the first Reservoir. This was to influence intended purchasers of land to view the area and to "äppreciate the glorious panoramas of the hills".

Special return trains ran from Princes Bridge Statiion (CBD) to Surrey Hills Station, with free tickets (passes), to allow interested persons to attend the land auctions.

Some of the larger estates auctioned in the years 1880 to 1920 included Windsor Park (1883), Broughton Park, Surrey Park, Tower Hill (1892), Surrey Hills Station Reserve, Rangeview (1890), View Park (1915), Blacks (1920), Mont Albert (1885)), Mont Albert Park, Kenmare Heights (1908), Creswick (1913), Harston (1906), Victoria Hill (1907), Inglesby (1908), Lloyd (1913), Windsor Park (1883), Elgar Park, Surrey Reserve,


1893 - farm in Mont Albert district

1890s - view east on Mont Albert Rd from Balwyn Rd

1882 - the Tower on Canterbury Rd

1883 - Tower Estate subdivision

Early 1900s - typical buggy

1908 - Surrey Hills district

1908 - Albany Crescent

1907 - Surrey Hills from the north

1907 - houses in Essex Rd area

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