After leaving Lillimur, Marija and I drove a little further along the Western Highway and into the town of Kaniva, about 18 km from the South Australia/Victoria State border.
Prior to European settlement in the area, the Kaniva region was home to the Wotjobaluk, Jaadwa, Jadawadjali, Wergaia and Jupagik aboriginal people.
In 1845, a South Australian squatter named Heighway Jones, settled in the Kaniva district and commenced sheep grazing. By 1851 the Tattyara run was gazetted, with the Tattyara homestead located just a few kilometres from the current township of Kaniva. Tattyara was named after the Tyatyalla aboriginal people who inhabited the Kaniva district. On the 1st day of December 1881, the Nudjik Post Office was opened and renamed Kaniva in the following year in 1882. The origin of the name Kaniva is unclear. It has been suggested that it is derived from Kinnivie in Durham, England, or from Cniva who was a 3rd-century Gothic chieftain who commenced the invasion of the Roman empire. Others suggest the name is an aboriginal word.
The Kaniva area contains various rare flora and fauna including the rare Red-tailed black cockatoo. The Shire of West Wimmera prohibits the felling of dead trees as these are used as nesting sites for the cockatoos.
Kaniva is home to the Sheep Art Trail. The concept of the Sheep Art Trail was from a stencil day held in November 2010 where over 100 property stencils were brought in to record the sheep history of the Kaniva district. A Sheep Art committee was formed and an application was made for funding to paint a flock of fibreglass sheep was applied for. The application was unsuccessful. Local businesses and community groups subsequently donated money to allow the project to proceed.
Whilst we were in Kaniva we spotted some toys in a shop window and we couldn’t resist. In we went to buy something for our two beautiful grandchildren.
We left Kaniva and drove a short distance to the town of Miram where we intended to activate the Miram silo for the Silos On The Air (SiOTA) program.
Above:- Map showing the location of Miram. Map c/o google maps.
Miram is located about 10 kilometres northeast of Kaniva. It was named after a locality called mripiram later known as Miram Piram and later shorted to Miram in 1904. It is believed that Miram is an aboriginal word for bough of a tree.
The settlement of the Miram district occurred during the 1870s. In 1884 a school was opened in the district. Following the extension of the railway line from Dimboola to Serviceton, the Miram district flourished with wheat crops being carried by road wagons to Dimboola or South Australia.
In 1888 Miram’s first store was opened by George Coles (b. 1855. d. 1931). He already had a store in the nearby town of Diapur. His son George James Coles (b. 1885. d. 1977) was the founder of G.J. Coles and Company.
Above:- George Coles who opened the Miram store. Image c/o ancestry.com.au
The Coles’ store in Miram operated until it was sold in 1892. In 1903 Phillip Wheaton purchased the store and it was in operation as a store and post office until its closure in 2000. It was not until I got home that I realised the significance of the old building we had seen in this tiny town.
Above:- the old Coles store, Miram. Image c/o Google Street view.
In 1890 an Anglican church was built. In 1914 a public hall was constructed. The Miram school closed in 1952 with students attending the Kaniva Consolidated school. The Miram Anglican and Methodist churches were closed in 1960 and 1964.
Above:- a farmer at work on his farm with a team of horses. Image c/o Weekly Times, Melbourne, Sat 21 Sep 1929, Trove.
The silos at Miram were constructed in 1939 alongside the railway line.
We parked right alongside the silo and operated from the 4WD, running the Icom IC-7000, 100 watts, and the Codan 930 antenna.
Above:- the activation zone at the Miram silo. Image c/o SiOTA website.
Marija made the following QSOs on 40m SSB:-
I made the following QSOs on 40m SSB:-
I made the following QSOs on 20m SSB:-
- Aussie Towns, 2023, <https://www.aussietowns.com.au/town/kaniva-vic>, viewed 22nd March 2023.
- Victorian Places, 2023, <https://www.victorianplaces.com.au/miram>, viewed 22nd March 2023.
- Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaniva>, viewed 22nd March 2023.