Historical information

Gold was discovered in Ballarat in 1851 when many people rushed to the diggings. A monument commemorates the centenary of the finding of gold at Poverty Point and is dedicated to the memory of pioneer miners of Ballarat. It records gold yields, nuggets and the richest recorded yields of both alluvial and quartz mines.

The replica gold nugget on the monument is the `Welcome Nugget`, found in Ballarat in 1858, weighed 2,217 ounces and was sold for £10,500.

The memorial, known as the Pioneer Miners’ Monument, was made to commemorate Ballarat's gold centenary. It was proposed that part of the Pioneers' Memorial Fund might be used. This fund was started with £1300 profit from the 1938 centenary celebrations. (Age (Melbourne),

The monument was created by John Edward Skilbeck, a toolmaker with Ronaldson and Tippett. John Skilbeck had a deep interest in Ballarat History, and undertook much research with Bert Strange and Keith Stacpoole. Councilllor William Ernest Roff provided the copper for the memorial from scrap copper obtained during his plumbing business. The copper was reworked by John Skilbeck, and was soldered in the kitchen of his home at 14 Frank Street.

Physical description

Colour photograph of the gold monument on the corner of Sturt Street and Albert Street, Ballarat. It commemorates the discovery of gold at Poverty Point in August 1851, and was

The monument was unveiled in 1951 and is mainly constructed of large piecesof quartz, with a miniature popper head on the top made of copper. Mounted on the side is a replica of the Welcome Nugget, which was unearthed on the corner of Humffray and Mair Streets, Ballarat on 09 June 1858.

Inscriptions & markings


This monument was erected by the Ballarat Historical Society to commemorate the finding of gold at Poverty Point 21st August 1851 and is dedicated to the memory of/ pioneer miners of Ballarat


Richest recorded yields alluvial mines

Band of Hope 303269 Ozs

Prince of Wales 168929

Koh I Noor 164157

Great Redan Ex 110111

Albion 107125

Bonshaw Fr 96520

Park 94699

St George 86702

Sir Wm Don 76830

Hand in Hand 76830

Sir Henry Loch 43562

Quartz Mines

Star of the East 256758 Ozs

Band of Hope 158299

Victoria United 152013

N Woah Hawp 129562

New Normanby 127562

Britannia 103225

Llanberris No 1 100533

Black Hill 91665

Last Chance U 83766

Llanberris 71364

Speedwell 66000

South Star 64444

Sulieman Pasha Companies 62666


Recorded gold yield 20606000 ozs

Nuggets Alluvial

Welcome 2217 ozs

Saraha Snads 1619

Lady Hotham 1177

Canadian 1 1117

Canadian 2 1011

Koh 1 Noor 834

Eureka 625

Lady Loch 617

Prince of Wales 606

Bakery Hill 571

Native Youth 540

Faboulous yields of earliest diggings not offically recorded Quartz Nuggets

N Woah Hawp 5-- 300 200 Ozs

White Horse 500

Woah Hawp 444 266 262

Canton 257 200

Q Victoria lease 410

U Black Hill Coy 315

Tinworths 250

Parade Coy 245