Shepparton

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Shepparton is a city and regional government area in the state of Victoria, Australia. The city itself lies on the Goulburn River, 180 km (112miles) by road N.N.E. of Melbourne.The Local Government Area population is 63,269 (2014), with the City of Shepparton itself about half that.

Before white settlement the area was part of the tribal grounds of the Bangerang people who called it ‘’’Canny-goopna’’’. The first white visitors were “overlanders” driving cattle between southern New South Wales and South Australia in 1838. A man named Edward Khull “squatted” briefly on 170,000 odd acres but couldn’t make a go of it. In 1843, Shearborne Shephard took over the “run” and worked it until 1857. The township that was founded on part of his land (surveyed in 1855) was named after him.

The first buildings that were to become the basis for the township were constructed by an Irishman, Paddy Macguire in about 1850 - Macguire’s Punt House and Emu Bush Inn. Easy concourse for man and beast across the river accompanied by a place to stay and be fed entertained made it inevitable that a settlement would form around it.

The Shire of Shepparton was created in 1879. The railway arrived in 1880. Irrigation in the area began at the tail end of the 1800s and, over the next few decades, Shepparton found itself surrounded by many thousands of acres of orchards and market gardens. The area became part of “The Food Bowl of Australia”.

See also: Furphy