Toolangi 3777Toolangi is a rural township and locality 52 km. north-east of Melbourne. It is situated near the Yea River in the Great Dividing Range, and is reached by the Healesville-Kinglake Road.
The name is thought to be derived from an Aboriginal word meaning stringy-bark tree or tall growing timber.
Immediately north of the township is the Toolangi State Forest. In the early 1890s the forest near the river was cleared for farming, and the timber was taken for milling and paling splitting. A school was opened in 1895.
In 1908 an unsuccessful poet took up residence in Toolangi, first in a tent and later in a timberworker's hut. Between living there and in a tramway bus at Kallista he continued writing, publishing Backblock Ballads and Other Verses (1913) and The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke (1915), which put C.J. Dennis at the forefront of popular verse. Dennis built a house at Toolangi, naming it Arden. The house and garden have been restored by new owners, and are open for public visits.
Toolangi has State forest reserves north and south of the township, and the Kinglake National Park is to the west. Timber mills continue to function, harvesting hardwood and regrowth forest. In the southern Blue Range there are a geographical observatory (1919), for magnetic and seismological observations, and a potato-growing research farm. The Toolangi State Forest has a Forest Discovery Centre for visitors.
Toolangi continues to be a resort for fishing and scenery. The township has a church and the C.J. Dennis Memorial Hall. Most of Toolangi's settlement runs along the river valley, adjacent to the Healesville-Kinglake Road.
Toolangi's census populations have been 126 (1911), 180 (1947) and 234 (1954).
❊ Web Links ❊
→ Toolangi 3777
❊ Also See... ❊
→ Toolangi State Forest
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