Wilmington is the first of a number of towns when heading eastwards to Broken Hill. Wilmington is a town that has most essential services and also clearly a great sense of community.
The town was officially named Wilmington by Governor Musgrave in 1876. No one is quite sure where he got the name but it is assumed that it was taken from either Wilmington in Delaware or Wilmington in North Carolina, in the United States. Why he chose this name is not certain although it is known that Musgrave's wife was American.
The first European settlers into the region arrived in the 1850s. They were impressed with the richness of the region (it was obviously during a time of good rainfall) and the prettiness of the setting and decided to name the district Beautiful Valley.
Wilmington has a highly original main street where there is no footpath as such but there are trees between the road and the buildings creating a kind of natural division between the road and the footpath. The churches in Wilmington are century old structures.
The first sign of a township in the district occurred in 1860-61 when Robert Blinman built an inn at the foot of Horrocks Pass which he named the Roundwood Hotel. By 1864 the Cobb & Co coach through the area stopped at the hotel. A few years later the Globe Hotel was built nearby. It is now known as the Wilmington Hotel and it is still possible to see the old coaching stables at the back of the building.
Today Wilmington is a sleepy little town with a population of only a couple of hundred people. It does have an excellent little museum with what looks like a Jindivik rocket outside. For the rest: it looks like it hasn't changed since the 1950s. It is truly a town which has stood still.