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Pastoral Stations 1901-1939

In spite of the huge logistical problems presented by distance and poor transportation and communication, for the first thirty years of the twentieth century the pastoral industry south of the Kimberley thrived. The area of land under lease soared from 59 million hectares in 1905 to 105 million hectares in 1921.

The size of most sheep stations was enormous.  Sheep numbers doubled between 1912 and 1934, by which time station flocks of 5.6 million sheep represented roughly half of the State's total. Even though the value of the dusty wool clip shipped from the North West was low by comparison to other wool clips, prices remained steady throughout the 1920s.

Teams of shearers, like these pictured at stations like Shaw River, Noonkanbah and Carlindie during the 1930s, worked from station to station.

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