By now you’ve probably heard about the mining town of Hycroft in Queensland.
Located on the shores of the Great Barrier Reef, the mining towns of Hybridge and Hycroft are among the oldest mining towns in Australia, with the oldest mines dating back to the 17th century.
But how did they all come together?
As part of our research for the book, Mining Town: Australia’s Mining Towns, we sat down with the man behind the mining industry, Peter Kressley, and talked about the history and history of the town, the current state of mining, and what’s next for the town.
Read the interview in full below, but in summary, we talked to Peter about how the town came to be and why it’s so important to know its history.
What is your town?
What’s it like to live in HybridTown?
Peter Kressly: Hybridtown is my town.
It’s a small town on the Great Coast of Queensland and the first town I ever got to live on.
It was just a bit of a fun place to live for about 12 years.
I came out of a mining job, so I’ve lived here since I was 17.
My first mining job was at the Hycroft mine.
I got the job as a trainee and that was the first mining town I’d ever been in.
I spent about three months at the mine and worked my way up to the second job at the nearby Glenmore.
How has mining changed the town?
The first town that I lived in was probably 1874 or 1875.
There were about three or four people living in it at that time.
When we first started mining the first ore was from the North Shore of South Australia and from that time on it was very common for ore to be hauled out of the South Coast.
When we first got started it was pretty much the same.
Mining was a very local industry, and we were working at a very young age.
So there were always people who would come up and see what we were doing and how we worked and we didn’t have to work so hard.
The only time I was really stressed was when we had to do a shift at the mining yard, and the guys that were working there would go on a night shift and come back and go out on a day shift.
They’d just come back to work and it was quite normal for the ore to go out.
What were some of the challenges that you faced while working at the mines?
I was actually working with one of the biggest iron ore deposits in the world, and I worked in a mine that was quite big.
We worked at about 3,000 tons of ore per hour, which was a big mine.
So we’d work for eight or nine hours straight and we’d then have to go to the washroom and go through a very strict procedure of washing our hands, because the ore was very sticky and we had very little time.
So when we were cleaning up we’d wash our hands with a little bit of water, but not in such a way that it made any big mess.
I was always very conscious of that.
What was also very, very important for me was that the ore that we were using was soft, and if we washed our hands that would cause it to get very hard.
I remember a miner saying to me, ‘Peter, what do you mean, you don’t like washing your hands?’
And I said, ‘You know, it was a bit embarrassing to be cleaning up a mine site, I’m pretty sure we cleaned our hands quite well.’
What was the best thing about working at Hycroft?
HybridTown: Australia ‘s Mining Town’ is the story of a town that is more than just a mining village.
It is a symbol of the history of mining in Australia.
How did you get into mining?
It was a job that I did at the Glenmore mine.
It went on for six months, and at the end of that time, I had the opportunity to move to Hycroft.
At that time it was only one of three mines in the area, and when we moved into Hycroft, we had two mines and two quarries.
So I had a bit more experience working in that area than I did working at Glenmore and Glenmore’s mine.
I was also working with a lot of other people at the time, and they were mining at the same time and doing the same jobs, and it made it pretty easy for us to work together.
Did you meet many of the people you worked with?
When I first started working at Lakeview I met quite a few of the other people who had worked at Glenmorangie.
They were working on the Northside mine and they had just come from Lakeview, so they were working the same kind of jobs that I was, so it was easy for me