Last week’s wet weather had Bay Post/Moruya Examiner readers reaching for their old photo collections, in search of historic flood pictures. Brian Harris, of the Moruya and District Historical Society, sent us these pictures of the dramatic 1925 flood, when the Moruya River burst its banks. The following extract from a newspaper report of Thursday, February 26, 1863, shows Eurobodalla residents, particularly farmers, have always found the weather a fickle friend.
ON Monday evening, the river and lagoon formed a junction, while the flat surrounding the eastern side of the town was also inundated, the water reaching to within a few feet of the post-office.
The house occupied by Mr Wright, the ferryman, was completely flooded during the night of Monday, but fortunately for the family, Mrs Constable, who has seen former floods on the Moruya, had on that evening insisted on their removing under her hospitable roof.
Some of our neighbours have met with very great loss, Mr W. T. Collett appearing to be the chief sufferer.
The river, so long confined within narrow limits by the steep ranges bordering its course, swept with an irresistible force over the open flats of Mungerarie, carrying the earth and tearing up the maize, destroying in a few moments the anxious toil of months.
We learn that on the Mungerarie estate the rise of the water was within six feet of the limits attained by the fatal flood of three years back, and that large portions of the land will remain under water for a lengthened period.
Mr W. T. Collett estimates his own loss at £600, besides the very serious loss sustained by Mr. B. Collett, whose farm adjoins, and by others on the property.
On the upper portion of the Kiora property we learn that Mr. P. Jeffreys will be a sufferer to a great extent.
Mr. W. Jinnings, of Kiora, will also lose a portion of his potatoes, but will sustain a still greater loss by the great damage the maize has sustained by the violent gale.
Several to whom we have spoken complain of the same mishap.
On the Currajumba flat ... Messrs. Nickson, Luck and Crapp will be the chief losers, the latter, he informs us, to the extent of about 1000 bushels of corn and some four tons of potatoes.
The water here reached within three feet of the former great flood.
At Yarragee, we regret to learn that Mr. John Luck is a very serious loser, and that Mr. Jacob Luck and Dr. Boot will to some extent be also losers.
From Mullenderree we learn that vast quantities of the crops will be lost, but until the fall of the water the exact amount cannot be ascertained.
Mr. H. Clarke, of Bergalia, has lost about 100 rods of fencing, and Mr. Elliott, of Kiora, has lost a great portion of his crop, the torrent making a clean sweep over his farm.
Below the town the width of the channel allows a free escape, and little damage was done.
The steamer’s punt, indeed, drifted from her moorings opposite Mynora, but was recovered opposite Ellison’s Creek without having sustained any injury.
The flood did some slight injury to the farms at Mynora, in particular covering Mr. Caswell’s vineyard, the grapes in which are coated with a thin layer of mud, but not sufficient to injure the fruit.
Down in the neighbourhood of Newstead the flood reached to a much greater height than ever known on previous occasions, being backed up by the heavy gale and sea.
To show the violence of the storm, we may mention that three loose blocks of stone, weighing perhaps half a ton each, were driven fairly across the roadway of the embankment by the force of the sea.
The Numba, ketch, was obliged to remove from her moorings at the wharf to an anchorage in front of the Ship Inn, where she rode out the gale in safety.
Information reached the Police Magistrate yesterday that a man named Parsons had been drowned at Bodalla in the attempt to swim to his hut, on the partial subsidence of the flood.