You are in: MacksvilleTo Places
Located on the Nambucca River on the North Coast of New South Wales, the town of Macksville is part of the traditional lands of the Kumbaingeri or Ngamba Aborigines who were the sole occupants of the land prior to white settlement in the mid 1800s. The first settlers to explore the Nambucca River around Macksville were cedar cutters who followed government surveyor Clement Hodgkinson to the region in the 1840s, yet settlement would remain fairly limited until the Robertson Lands Act of 1861 made settlement on rural land an attractive prospect for farmers, with the well watered surrounding lands attracting a number of dairy farmers.
The town itself was founded by Angus Mackay and Hugh McNally, who subdivided parts of their land to allow for the construction of a town in the 1880s. Originally known as Mack's Village, the town was officially named 'Macksville' in Mackay and McNally's honour in the 1890s. The two landowners would continue to have significant influence on the town with McNally becoming the first licensee of the iconic riverside Star Hotel which was built in 1885 using locally felled timber.
With a wharf built on the river bank at Macksville in the late 1880s, the town became the key trading centre for the surrounding farming and timber districts with the local creameries and timber mills able to participate in the lucrative river trading routes. The extension of the railway line through the town in 1919 ensured that the local economy wasn't affected by the demise of river transport and trade at the turn of the century.
Although paddle steamers no longer traverse the Nambucca River at Macksville, the River still contributes to the local economy with fishing and boating both favoured activities for visitors to the town. Today, its position on the Pacific Highway between Sydney and Brisbane has seen historic Macksville become a favoured stop for passing travellers encouraging a burgeoning tourism industry in the town. The surrounding farm land is now known for its tropical fruit farms which compliment the well established dairy and timber industries.