State Library of South Australia logoDownstream, the River Murray in South Australia
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Did you know? : First public railway in Australia

RGS_railway lineIn 1854, the first public railway on steel tracks in Australia connected Goolwa and Port Elliot on South Australia's south coast. Goolwa is located near the mouth of the River Murray and it was seen as advantageous that it be connected to Port Elliot, a sea port to which river cargo could be transferred and exported to overseas markets. The railway was extended to the safer harbour of Victor Harbor in 1864, after several shipwrecks at Port Elliot. Horses were used to pull the carriages until steam engines were introduced in 1884. The tracks now carry the Cockle Train (the wide sandy beaches around Goolwa are well known for cockles) a passenger train that operates during school holidays, on public holidays and most weekends.

First South Australian tramway
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Goolwa and Port Elliot horse tram
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