In 1892, Coolgardie grew into a booming town after prospectors Arthur Bayley and William Ford discovered a rich find of gold nuggets at Fly Flat. Prospectors, gold diggers, mining companies and speculators then followed the gold rush during the roaring nineties in Western Australia.
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In 1896, if you opened the door of Boulder Block Hotel and stepped inside, would you expect to find gold?
Yes, there is a story to be told about the secret goings-on at the Boulder Block Hotel. The underground miners of The Golden Mile were “on the gold”, and some of them were said to be selling the gold on the sly at the infamous pub before the whistle blew for the end of shift.
“Fly Flat” doesn’t sound like a prestigious or auspicious name for a place that started a gold rush boom. But on the outskirts of Coolgardie in Western Australia, the flat country with sparse gum trees was rich with alluvial gold, and changed the fortunes of a nation.
In 1892, two prospectors, Arthur Bayley and William Ford found over five hundred ounces of gold at Fly Flat. At today’s gold price, the horde would be valued at over half a million dollars.