Early 19th century

The European settlement of Maitland began with farmers in the early 1800s. The majority of Maitland, including its main avenue, High Street, grew without apparent planning giving the city its great charm. The original bullock track became fixed as the line of High Street with its meandering curves which are still evident today. At almost every turn within Maitland you come across an architectural delight with a myriad of historic buildings giving the city its unique character. Landmark buildings erected over 170 years ago stand alongside fine modern buildings, a harmonious mix of new and old. The area has long been an industrious area and since the 1820s Central Maitland has been home to industry, trade and commerce.

Its riverside location, stores and warehouses gave the settlers many a task to undertake within the frontier town. Maitland was home to a wide range of businesses, including flourmills, breweries, soap and candle making and salt stores. Iron workers, blacksmiths and saddlers also thrived at this time. During the 1850s a series of riverside merchants traded, most notably David Cohen & Co and Owen & Beckett, experiencing great success. Interspersed within the retail area of Central Maitland were a selection of services and outlets such as tailors, hairdressers, wig makers, confectioners, photographers and dressmakers who added to the sense of vitality and diversity within the area.

Did you know?
Tocal was on part of the land of the Gringai clan of the Wonnarua people. The name 'Tocal' is a Koori word meaning 'plenty'.
Did you know?
Caroline Chisholm provided shelter for homeless immigrants at a cottage in Mill Street East Maitland. It is the only known building to still survive that was associated with Caroline Chisholm.
Did you know?
Grossmann House was originally known as Entcliffe. It became known as 'Grossmann House' in 1935, after the headmistress, Miss Jeanette Grossmann.
Did you know?
There is a bridge in Maitland named after Private PZ Trecezinski. He was the only solder from the Maitland area to die in the Vietnam War.
Did you know?
Lieutenant John Shortland in 1797 discovered a waterway, which he named the Hunter River.
Did you know?
When Lieutenant Colonel Paterson first explored the Hunter Valley in 1801 he named the future site of Maitland, Schanck's Forest Plains. This original name was somehow lost, and Maitland was proclaimed in 1833.
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If you are chasing further information on Maitland’s history take a look at Maitland Libraries page on Local History. Maitland Library also offers resource links for those tracing family history. Alternatively, you can get in contact with the Maitland and District Historical Society, or the Maitland and District Genealogical Society who could help with your enquiry.

We acknowledge the Wonnarua People as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the land within the Maitland Local Government Area. We pay respect to all Aboriginal Elders, past, present and future with a spiritual connection to these lands.

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