Coolgardie is the first town encounted when traveling east from Kalgoolie to Perth. Coolgardie is an old mining town that had a quite sensational past. The town is a mere shadow of an earlier era. Coolgardie was a rich gold mining town, but the brighter fortunes of Kalgoolie determined a more negative history. Heritage factors have been recognised and the skeletons of the past are being preserved.
The town was founded in 1892, when gold was discovered in the area. Australia had seen several major gold discoveries over the previous three decades, mostly centred on the east coast, but these had mostly been exhausted by the 1890s. With the discovery of a new goldfield, an entire new gold rush began, with thousands flocking to the area. By 1898, Coolgardie was the third largest town in the colony, with a population of 15,000, and another 10,000 in the surrounding region.
Despite the fall off in gold and other drawbacks , many of the buildings from the town's peak have been retained, which in recent years has helped start a small revival in the town's fortunes. The development of a tourist industry has once again created some employment in the town, resulting in a small increase in population. Coolgardie appears to be no longer in danger of dying.
Be sure stop-off for an hour or so when passing through.