Lost in the Bush 150th anniversary marked with nine-day celebrations

STEP BACK IN TIME: Ros Ryan and Robert Isaacson stand in front of the Jane Duff replica cottage at the Duffholme Museum, Mitre. The museum, along with West Wimmera Shire, Horsham Rural City Council and the Barengi Gadjin Land Council, will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Lost in the Bush story this week. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

STEP BACK IN TIME: Ros Ryan and Robert Isaacson stand in front of the Jane Duff replica cottage at the Duffholme Museum, Mitre. The museum, along with West Wimmera Shire, Horsham Rural City Council and the Barengi Gadjin Land Council, will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Lost in the Bush story this week. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

THE Duffholme Museum will be a hive of activities throughout the Lost in the Bush celebrations.

The nine-day celebrations will mark 150 years since Isaac, Jane and Frank – aged nine, seven and three – became lost in the bush on August 12, 1864. 

The children were found with the help of Aboriginal trackers.

Lost in the Bush: Calendar of events

Duffholme Museum’s Robert Isaacson is looking forward to the celebrations.

“I’m not sure how big it’s going to be. I won’t be surprised with any number that turns up,” he said.

“It is an old story that is close to a lot of people’s hearts, especially in the Wimmera where lots of people know about it.

“It is a significant part of Australian history.

“The best part is that it turned out to be a happy story. Most of the time if someone was lost in those days, they were lost forever.

“It is what makes this story unique.”

Mr Isaacson said he would like to see the story re-introduced into the education system.

The museum will be open on Saturday as part of the celebrations.

“People can come to the museum. We have the replica hut here for people to look at,” he said.

“From 1.30pm to 2pm we have two actors from the Lost in the Bush movie.

“They are going to talk about making the film, which is quite interesting.”

Mr Isaacson said the Salvation Army would cook a barbecue throughout the day.

West Wimmera Shire will host an afternoon tea at the Jane Duff Memorial Park on Sunday.

“There are a few people speaking there, including myself,” Mr Isaacson said.

“We will have the museum open then as well for people to come up and have a look.”

School children will also visit the museum throughout the nine-day commemoration.

“We have lots of different schools coming out to have a look at the museum and the hut,” Mr Isaacson said.

“They will then walk to the disused railway line and then to the Jane Duff Memorial Park where they will do activities.

“All the activities have to do with education and we will try to organise some damper for the children as well.

“It will be a good experience for them.”

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