"Hartley, Little Hartley and Hartley Vale are all situated in the
Kanimbla Valley, which derives its name after the local Aboriginal
inhabitants of the area.

The first white men to see the Kanimbla Valley were explorers, Blaxland,
Wentworth and Lawson in the year 1813. At that time the colony was
desperately seeking grazing land and the valley seemed to be the answer
to their search. Years later Wentworth was to remember the day as  'when
the boundless countryside burst upon their sight'. (Ring, 1998)

19 years later when the Victoria Pass road was completed, the doorway to
the west was open and settlement began in earnest. The next 50 years saw
Hartley grow into a bustling township surrounded by churches, a post
office, stage couch facilities, and inns. (Ring, 1998)
Today Hartley is a rural residential area known for its apples, grown in
past times, and its peaceful country atmosphere. With its beautiful
serene landscape and stunning backdrop of the Blue Mountains escarpment
Hartley is, not only an area of historic interest but a much sought
after rural escape.'


Written by Inara Hawley
Bibliography:
Foster et al. (1983), The Story of Hartley and its Historic Court House,
N.S.W. National Parks and Wildlife Service
Ring, S., (1998) Hartley Historic Site Leaflet, N.S.W. National Parks
and Wildlife Service
As the farming community grew the village needed a police centre, which
led to the building of the Hartley Court House in 1837. Further
settlement in Hartley Township saw the first land sales in 1840 with
prices set by the Governor at 8 pounds an acre. Six years later white
settlement was firmly in place and very few of the local aboriginal
inhabitants remained. (Ring, 1998)

By the mid 1850's travellers were greeted by public houses, blacksmiths
and about half a dozen substantial dwellings at Little Hartley. In the
1860's, all the inns were booking offices for coach lines and mining for
kerosene shale in the valley had begun. The years after gold was
discovered in the mid west saw Hartley truly flourish, but by 1887, with
the Great Western Railway bypassing the town, Hartley as a township
began to decline. (Foster et al, 1983)
Apart from Hartley Historic Village, the few remaining buildings of
historic interest were all mostly inns or stores serving travellers west
of the Blue Mountains. On the Great Western Highway these are the now
private residences of 'Nioka', 'Rosedale' and 'Billesdene Grange', the
adjoining buildings of 'Harp of Erin', now a gallery and ' Williams
Store', now Hartley Realty, directly opposite is 'Ambermere', soon to
become a restaurant, and further up the road is 'Kerosene Cottage', now
a private residence, beside it is the 'Tallisman Gallery' and 'Meads
Farm', now a bed & breakfast. Hartley Vale's remaining historic
buildings are the 'Comet Inn' and 'Collits Inn', both of which are now
bed & breakfast & restaurant establishments.
Hartley - A brief History
Hartley, Little Hartley, Hartley Vale Blue Mountains NSW Australia
~ HISTORY LINKS ~
Information on the History and Historic Buildings in Hartley, Lithgow & their surrounding areas in the 'Early  Australian Explorer Country' of the Blue Mountains & Central Tablelands NSW.
Information on the History and Historic Buildings in Hartley, Lithgow & their surrounding areas in the 'Early  Australian Explorer Country' of the Blue Mountains & Central Tablelands NSW.
Lithgow, Hartley early 'explorer country' in NSW Blue Mountains & Central Tablelands
including Little Hartley, Hartley Vale, Glenroy, Hampton, Portland, Rydal, Marrangaroo & Wallerawang
Lithgow, Hartley areas ~ History
Lithgow, Hartley and surrounds
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