The First Riverina Wheat was Grown in the Coolamon District

10 Oct 1938 Daily Advertiser (Wagga Wagga)

Writing In the official souvenir book let for the 'Back to Coolamon' Week, which was celebrated from September 3 to 9, 1934, the late Mr. A. W. Stinson refers to the first wheat grown in Riverina.

This was in the Coolamon district.

Mr. Stinson said that John Stinson (his father) and Anthony Stinson (his uncle), in the year 1857, had cleared an area of some eight acres for the purpose of experimenting in wheat growing.

'The plot,' stated Mr. Stinson in his article, "formed part of the Berry Jerry and Pine Hill homesteads, on the property now known as 'Kinloch,' owned by Mr. W. J. Stinson."

During April, 1857, Mr. Stinson continued, the land was ploughed with a forked sapling, sharpened at the point, and the 'plough' was drawn by four bullocks.

The land was ploughed to a depth of four to five inches, and sown by hand, with about three quarters of a bushel of wheat per acre. The year proved a good one, and the crop was harvested in December.

It was cut down with a scythe and the grain threshed with a hand bail.

The grain was of excellent quality, and averaged just on 30 bushels to the acre.

The success of this first venture in wheat growing in Riverina was kept a close secret, so that settlers in Victoria and South Australia would not hear of it, and invade the district selecting farms.