Broken Hill: New Frontiers

Sydney to Broken Hill is about 13 hours drive if you take the direct route.

Broken Hill was built on the world's largest silver, lead and zinc mine that established Broken Hill Proprietary Company Limited (BHP) in 1885 after Charles Rasp and two others pegged out a mineral lease at a rocky outcrop known as `the broken hill’. The land held the richest sliver-lead-zinc concentration ever found and what followed was the development of a frontier town filled with stories of boom and bust.

These stories are best told at the The Albert Kersten Mining & Minerals Museum located behind the stone facade of the restored former Bond Store. The museum includes displays on how the world’s largest deposit of silver lead and zinc was formed.

Another great museum that captures the heritage of Broken Hill is the Sulphide Street Railway and History Museum. This is actually four museums for the price of one: the Broken Hill Migrant Museum, the Hospital Museum, the Ron Carter Transport Pavilion and the Triple Chance Mineral Collection. It is also home to a range of railway attractions, including the Silver City Comet and a selection of restored gems from the Silverton Tramway Company.

These days, Broken Hill offers much more than mining tours and museums. There are more than 30 art galleries, with work by artists inspired by the town and surrounding landscapes. These captivating spaces range from the civic splendour of the Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery to more intimate offerings that are part of artists’ homes and studios. Broken Hill Regional Gallery is the oldest regional gallery in New South Wales. Founded in 1904, it is now located in the historic Sully’s Emporium Building on Argent Street. Inside is a fine collection of Australian and European art dating back to 1867, along with a changing program of exhibitions by contemporary Australian and local artists.

There are numerous cultural experiences on offer in Broken Hill such as the city’s synagogue. This place of worship welcomes visitors and its museum, Synagogue of The Outback Museum, offers a unique perspective on the richness of life in the outback.

Finally in nearby Silverton you can dig up the past in the beautifully restored Silverton Gaol Museum and Silverton School Museum. Here every organization that grew because of the mining boom is represented:  from the Salvation Army, Fire Brigade, Silverton Tramway Company to the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. If you love your Australian film history then check out the Mad Max Museum, the only museum in the world dedicated to Mad Max 2.

To find out more about Broken Hill’s various experiences including heritage trails and artist studio trails go to Broken Hill Australia or Visit NSW.

Museums & Galleries of NSW helps small-medium museums, galleries and Aboriginal cultural centres create exciting experiences for visitors and, through this, thriving local NSW communities. We don't run museums, galleries and cultural centres but we care about those who do. We develop their skills, connect them with others in the industry, provide funding, point visitors their way, and give them access to ground-breaking exhibitions.

Museums & Galleries of NSW is supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW.

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