Images of Dorset


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The Chinese in Dorset


Fears of a Chinese occupation of Ringarooma's tin fields were not far fetched in the 1880's.
From Branxholm to Moorina, Bradshaw's Creek, Garibaldi and Weldborough the Chinese outnumbered the Europeans.
Entrepreneurs of cheap labour and get rich schemes brought in the Chinese to work the mines of absentee owners.
Had they brought in Chinese women too, then Tasmania's history may have been different.
Without women, the men were lonely. Some managed to court or wed European women: a few imported brides from China.
But they were hated by many of the European miners who despised their colour and ability to work hard
Moorina Cemetary
The Chinese who came to the Ringarooma Municipality ( now Dorset Municipality) were nearly all from Kwangtung, in war torn Southern China.
In districts where there were a large number of Chinese working for established camps. The main Chinese camps in the northeast were at The Batch, Derby, Thomas' Palins in Portland, later named Weldborough and at Garibaldi on the Wyniford River. The Chinese were also an integral part of the communities at Mt Cameron, Moorina and at Ruby Flats.
Ceremonial Oven

Last remaining Chinese building in Branxholm
Last remaining Chinese building in Branxholm.

Since this photo was taken, the right side of the building collapsed

and the building has been removed.

A brief extract from "As the River Flows" - Mount Victoria to Boobyalla- A History of the Ringarooma Municipality, © 1988

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