A small, peaceful and historically significant town, Cue offers a good two-day layover before continuing your travels through the outback! Although being winners of the tidiest town in Western Australia in 2006 and the National Litter Prevention Award in 2007, the ‘Queen of the Murchison’ is almost a ghost town these days, serving as a living example of the past!
Settlement and exploration in Cue was almost non-existent until the discovery of gold in 1892. As a result, 500 miners flocked to the town in search of this hidden treasure, with the town being gazzeted a year later in 1893. Although the first piece of gold was found by Michael Fitzgerald, the town was named after Tom Cue, who was the first person to register the claim of finding gold.
For the next 10 years, development occurred rapidly, culminating in a train line, 3 newspapers, a hospital and a population of over 10 000 people. However, due to numerous reasons such as the Great Depression and World War One, the biggest mine in the area shut down with the population dropping to staggeringly low 500 people in 1933.
This small community continued to mine gold, although to nowhere near the extent that was seen in the early 1900’s. In 2006, Cue was classified by the National Trust as a place with significant historical value. Today the town seems very empty due to all the 19th century buildings still standing strong, however only being populated by under 200 people.
The many empty historic buildings strewn around Cue give this town a very empty and ghostly feel. Many of these buildings were built to last for centuries due to the impression that mining will keep this town thriving. However, due to the exodus from Cue through the early 1900’s, these buildings now stand empty and quiet. The Masonic Lodge is an unusual building that was built in 1899 and was closed 80 years later. The corrugated iron structure is home to many ghost stories as well as being a record holder for the largest, free standing, 2-storey, corrugated iron structure in Australia!
Another historically building that’s well worth a visit is the Cue Shire Office, constructed in the late 1890’s. This famous building was the place of many business meetings between world famous businessmen, including American President Herbert Hoover!
The police station and post office in Cue are still used today even though construction of these buildings was finished in the late 1890’s, over 120 years ago!
The second-largest granite monolith in Australia, Walga Rock is a must see to either scale this beast or gaze upon the mysterious aboriginal artwork! The artwork of the aboriginal people can be seen in a large cave within the rock. One of the pictures drawn is clouded with mystery though. A detailed painting of a ship can be seen on one of the cave’s walls. What’s strange is that the rock is 300km inland resulting in many theories on how local people were able to know and draw the detail that is presented in this artwork. Theories range from local aborigines seeing the ship on the coast then retreating inland to stranded Europeans drawing their lost ship on this gigantic monolith. Either way, the Walga Rock is a must see in your visit to Cue!
Distance from Perth: 620km Northeast
Download Free App