When Harriett Susan McCartney passed away in 19341 she was the last of her family to live at the old Pampoolah homestead which her family had owned since around 1850.2 The area was once called Redbank but renamed Pampoolah in 1891 and hosted many pioneer families from Scotland, England and Northern Ireland.3
In her will, Harriett bequeathed £300 for the purpose of rebuilding the Union Church at Pampoolah on the spot where it formerly stood at the corner of Newby and Redbank Roads. She stipulated that the church could be used by any religious denomination of the Protestant faith.4 Sam Bird of Tinonee built the brick church while Mr Schubert and Mr Lean completed the woodwork which included seating for 50, a pulpit and anterooms.5 Officially opened in 1940, it was regularly used by Methodist and Free Presbyterian faiths.6 One worshipper bought hanging lamps to assist with evening services.7
The original timber church had opened in 1859 as a Free Church being part of the Presbyterian Church of Eastern Australia. The land was donated by Archibald Cameron and had amazing views of the surrounding countryside and the Manning River.8 It is unclear when this original church was demolished (prior to 1899) but until 1940 when the new brick church was built, services were held in the Redbank Hall that was situated in the paddock near the church.9
The former church is now privately owned and is a sanctuary for bovine brethren.
Author: Janine Roberts
Sponsored by the Old Bar Manning Point Business & Community Association and supported by Create NSW’s Cultural Grant Program, a devolved funding program administered by the Royal Australian Historical Society on behalf of the NSW Government.
1 NSW BDM, death index for Harriet S McCartney No. 10440/1934.
2 NSW LRS Book-No: 1043-467; MRT, 23 June 1934, 8.
3 Wingham Chronicle, 10 October 1952, 4 and 30 September 1952, 4.
4 Findmypast.com, NSW Will Books 1800-1952 for Harriett Susan McCartney.
5 Northern Champion, 5 April 1939, 4.
6 Northern Champion, 24 February 1940, 4.
7 Manning River Times, 21 August 1940, 2.
8 SMH, 18 February 1859, 3.
9 MRT, 10 May 1899, 3.