> Who’s Here
A place of peace and contemplation distinguished by a poetic profusion of trees, the Ballarat New Cemetery is the resting place of many significant people from our country’s history.
Born around 1821 he was a member of the Burrumbeet Balug and resided at Ercildoune. Mullawallah, also known as ‘Frank’ or ‘William’ Wilson or ‘King Billy’ was buried at the New Cemetery. He was one of three Aboriginal people around the Ballarat region who were given the title of ‘king’ by European settlers. More likely he was a respected member of the Wathaurong.
He was well known in the Ballarat area, giving an exhibition of boomerang throwing in Sturt Street in August, 1880.
‘Frank’ died at the Ballarat Base Hospital on September 23, 1896, and the Ballarat Historical Record Society, in conjunction with the Australian Native’s Association, placed a monument over his grave in 1897 as a sign of respect. The monument took the form of an obelisk surrounded by railing composed of ‘spears.’
The points of the spears projected beyond the grave, but were within the allotted gravesite area. The trustees were concerned that children playing would be injured by the points and barbs of the spears, so they hammered round the stone posts in which they were set, resulting in letters to the editor and complaints to the cemetery trustees.
Oddie was known as the ‘Father of Ballarat’ being one of the first prospectors in the district. He was an eyewitness to the Eureka uprising and became instrumental in organizing the celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the Eureka Affair in 1904.
He was also involved with the establishment of the Wesleyan Church in Ballarat and, a keen philanthropist, he donated to many of the local charities and sat on many of the committees. At one time he was considered one of Ballarat’s wealthiest men, but he was financially crippled in the 1890s as a result of the Mercantile Bank collapse.
He died on March 3, 1911, aged 86.