timeline of historic events following colonisation 

see also brief history

1836

First Colonists arrive in South Australia

1840

Governor Gawler losses his compass in this area – named Mount Compass

1842

County of Hindmarsh proclaimed – to assist with land transactions

1846

First “Hundreds” proclaimed – including Nangkita, Myponga & Kuitpo

1851

New land regulations provide for Pastoral Leases of up to 14 years length instead of the annual ‘occupation licences’ 

1855

Mr Lush’s tavern (aka wine shanty) opens at Square Waterhole

1857

‘Responsible Government’ granted to South Australians by the Governor under authority of the British Government –  first meeting of SA Parliament held

1858

Torrens Real Property Act passed – single Certificates of Title for individual allotments created which also record transfer of ownership

1859

Crown Land sold to P D Prankerd (Sect 1769) & E E Hewett (Sect 1770) in Hundreds of Nangkita & Kondoparinga (Nangkita Rd/Stones Ford Road)

1867

Newly surveyed land near River Finniss (Hd Kondoparinga) auctioned by Government – Sections 1933 to 1984 advertised for sale (Mt Magnificent area)

1867

1st house – a Stationman/Roadman’s Cottage built in Mt Compass by Thomas O’Callaghan

1869

Waste Lands Management Act (or Strangways Act) passed – Crown Land blocks of up to 640 acres are now sold on credit. Pastoralists can be given 6 months notice of their land being resumed (reclaimed) by the Government   

1871

The Roadman’s original cottage destroyed by fire & is rebuilt by T O’Callaghan

1874

George Waye appointed as the new Roadman

 1880s

A series of droughts hit South Australia

1884

Gardner Brothers Estate of 19,000 acres in this area advertised for sale – includes land which will become the town’s future retail area

1885

“Working Men’s Blocks” scheme commences where the Government offers smaller blocks on a 21 year lease to men who live ‘by their own labour’

1888

Government Land Sales – Miscellaneous Leases in Hundred of Nangkita sold to W S Gardner, J Smith, Hailstone Brothers, G Waye & J Chitnal

1890-93

Severe depression leading to an Australian banking crisis in 1893

1890

Wright Brothers gardening in Mt Compass on land rented from Lease holder Henry McConville

1893

Mt Compass re-surveyed with smaller “Working Men’s Blocks” along the Main Road swamp land – on resumed pastoral land

1893

Village Settlement Act passed – for Co-operatives of more than 20 people

1894

Nangkita Village Settlement established by the Government to provide a living for unemployed men & their families (25 men from Port Adelaide)

1894

Nangkita School opened

1894

First Post Office in Mt Compass (operated by Mr Will Wright)

1896

Mount Compass Agricultural Bureau formed

1898

Literary Society formed in Mt Compass – meeting in the empty Roadman’s Cottage which was also being used as the local meeting hall.

1899

1st dairy cow brought into the district by Richard Peters – an imported Jersey

1899

1st school commences in Mt Compass at the old Roadman’s Cottage- 11 students

1901

Herbert Waye offers 2 acres of his land for the new District Hall

1902

1st Agricultural Show held at the Roadman’s Cottage

1903

New Hall built on H Waye’s two acres –opened on 28th December

1904

£120 ($240) bank loan taken out over 15 years to cover remaining Hall costs

1904

Mt Compass School moves across to new hall

1908

Local orchardist C S Hancock wins a Gold Medal for his exported apples at the Franco-British Exhibition in London

1909

Tooperang Post Office opened – closed in 1974

1909

Rockwood School  (Tooperang) opened with 25 pupils

1909

Reported that there were now more than 50 houses in the district

1912

Bank refuses to extend Hall loan period – Mr David Wright pays out the loan and takes over the debt 

1915

Compass Heights surveyed – 430 acres cut up into 4 acre blocks & sold to 101 individuals with the aim of increasing the votes for a railway to Willunga

1915

Howard Peters first WW1 volunteer to enlist from this district

1916

Church of Christ built in Mt Compass – demolished 2014

1916

24 foot well sunk alongside Hall for water trough

1918

WW1 Memorial Pines planted alongside Hall

1920

Four aboriginals seen at Blackfellows Creek – believed to be final tribal visit to their country

1924

Nangkita – Mt Compass Football team established

1927-29

Severe drought

1928

Horace Green installs the first overhead sprinkler system in this area at his farm in Tooperang

1929

The start of the ‘Great Depression’ – continues into the mid 1930s

1930

Enterprise Colony started by the Church of Christ to help families during the depression years. Later handed over to the Government.

1931

Declaration of Trust signed – sets out the “Committee of Management of the Mount Compass Public Hall”. Consists of 5 Trustees + 3 elected members

1932

First cricket match in Mt Compass (earlier teams at Nangkita & Blackfellow’s Creek, in the 1920s)

1932

Yundi Settlement started with 19 small blocks for poultry farming as a Government project for the unemployed.

1934

Mt Compass school opened on present site in new brick building with 56 students

1934

Yundi school opened – corner of Burma & Yundi Roads

1935

Nangkita Methodist Church opened – built with volunteer labour

1936

Extra land purchased from Mrs Ida Garden to extend the town recreational area

1937

1st town oval on current site constructed using volunteer labour

1937

First Bank Manager (Mr Slater) operating a Bank of Adelaide 2 days a week, a butcher (Mr Watson), a General Store and Bakery (Beaumonts), Garage (I K Arthur), Blacksmith (Mr Fookes) and Post Office all operating in Mt Compass

1939

Electric lighting installed in Mt Compass Hall by I K Arthur - powered (when required) by a generator situated across the road

1939

Quotes to either extend the Hall or build a new Hall sought

1939

Albert Waye gives part of his land for the present cemetery

1936

Girl Guides and Brownies formed

1939-45

World War 2

1943

Volunteer Defence Corps (Home Guard) formed in Mt Compass

1945

Tooperang Progress Committee formed

1946

Mt Compass History Book published by the Literary Society – “Mt Compass, The First Hundred Years”

1946

Mount Compass Co-operative Store Ltd formed – continues until 1963

1946-47

Oval rebuilt over two seasons using volunteer labour

1950

Extra acre of land adjoining oval purchased from the Nitschke family

1953

Hall Committee receives petition calling for a public meeting to consider building a new Hall and to become an incorporated body

1953

The Mount Compass War Memorial Community Centre is incorporated four months after this meeting

1954

The removal of 19 Soldier’s Memorial pine trees from site near the Hall is authorised to make room for the new Memorial Hall

1954

Making of cement blocks for new kitchen commences & foundations laid by volunteers

1954

Electricity arrives in Mt Compass

1955

New kitchen attached to Hall is completed using volunteer labour and home-made bricks (the existing kitchen)

1955

Secondary year commences at Mt Compass School

1956

RSL Clubrooms opened - built by volunteer labour

1956

Dairy Vale factory (United Co-operative Dairymen Ltd) opens

1956

Tooperang Soldiers Memorial Hall opened

1957

Foundations for new Mt Compass War Memorial Hall laid

1957

1st Football changerooms built

1958

Premier Thomas Playford opens newly completed Hall on 20th June

1958

Bank loan of £3,000 ($6,000) taken out to cover remaining Hall costs

1959

Yundi War Memorial Hall opened by Geoff O’Halloran Giles MP

1959

WW1 and WW2 Honour Roll unveiled in the Mt Compass Hall

1960

Further land adjoining the Community Centre purchased from I K Arthur

1961

Lutheran Church opened in Mt Compass

1962

Mt Compass School becomes an Area School. Rockwood (Tooperang), Prospect Hill & Yundi Schools closed (1961-1963)

1963

Monthly Entre Nous newsletter started by the Community Centre – printed up until 2013

1970

Mt Compass Basketball Club changes name to Mt Compass Netball Club

1974

First Compass Cup held – organised by Mt Compass Rural Youth

1985

New Sports & Social Club complex opened on the town oval

1986

Burgess Oval land purchased by District Council with additional funding from Mt Compass War Memorial Community Centre Inc

1987

Mains water supply arrives in Mt Compass

1990

Angela Bannon unveils bicentennial quilt wall hanging in Memorial Hall

1991

New CFS station opened

1993

School Boardwalk opened – built by students and parents on school wetlands

1996

Time capsule placed at new Cow Sculpture – to be opened in the year 2046

1996

Dairy Vale factory closes

1997

Fleurieu Golf Course clubrooms opened – includes a new residential zone

1998

New Tennis Clubrooms opened by patron Cynthia Bowles

1999

RSL Hall ownership handed over to the Mt Compass War Memorial Community Centre Inc. RSL sub-branch closed same year. 

2005

Mt Compass History Book “Where the Compass Leads You” published by Linton Jacobs

2012

Wetland construction project commences alongside Sam Court

2012

Retail area landscaping & parking redevelopment commences

2016

 ‘Compass Central’ shopping centre development opened by Dorothy Childs

2016

Memorial Hall renovations and new foyer opened by Ronda Arthur

2019

Book 2 of “Where the Compass Leads You” History Book published