Youngdegin by Bruce James

Location: 19km south of Cunderdin.

Immerse yourself in our past by taking a trip to Youndegin – 19km south of Cunderdin along the Cunderdin-Quairading Road (and then left on the Goldfields Road) – where you’ll find the original police outpost. Built from stone and mud with a thatched roof, the outpost’s answer to the modern day ‘lock-up’ was a nearby York Gum. Constable Allerly was the first police officer in charge of the post and the building represented the first settlement in the area.

It was the death of an early settler, E.J. Clarkson at the hands of Aborigines that originally led to the establishment of the police outpost. In 1880 Constable Alfred Eaton arrived to take over its running and he and his eventual wife, Mary later made the building their home. By all accounts Constable Eaton was quite the entrepreneur and during the goldrush of 1888 he saw an opportunity to make the most of the passing trade by building the Youndegin Arms. The story told is that his popular local delicacy was parrot pie.

Although once very busy, things changed with the building of the railway, which bypassed Youndegin to the north. This put to rest any ideas that it would become the major centre for the area and by 1894 the pub had closed down. Mr Eaton left the police force and changed careers becoming the first farmer in the Cunderdin District.