Historical information

The family-owned Furphy company has been manufacturing agricultural equipment in Kyneton and then Shepparton in Victoria from the 1860s to the present day. In the late 1800s the company developed the Furphy Water Cart to help farmers transport water to and from and around their properties - especially in time of drought. At the beginning of World War One, the carts were used to distribute water amongst the thousands of soldiers completing their basic training at Broadmeadows. They were also used for the same purpose in the camps and battlefields overseas. As the soldiers gathered around the water carts they would often chat, share information and gossip amongst themselves. These practices resulted in the term Furphy evolving in to the Australian vernacular as meaning a statement or fact that isn’t quite true or a little bit dubious.

Physical description

Furphy water cart, unpainted with traces of red on embossed end

Inscriptions & markings

On side of tank in black paint "CHURCHILL ISLAND"

Embossed on end: Furphy water cart; makers Furphy & Sons, Shepparton and other inscriptions.