Bangalee Reserve is situated on two former farms – the Condie farm and the Weir farm. The Condie farm was known as 'Bellfields' and occupied the western half of the Reserve in the area where the picnic ground and river walks are now located. The Weir farm was further to the east and finished on the edges of Bangalee Creek.
Remains of both farms can be seen throughout the Reserve. The remains of the old Condie homestead are just up from the picnic ground while the Condie graves are located further up the slope to the east along the Condie’s walking track. There are also other remains scattered within a few hundred metres of the picnic area including the remains of a dairy, part of several horse-drawn ploughs, an old well, numerous fence posts, and several old farm roads complete with watercourse crossings made from local stone. At the very end of the River Track, there is a large rock with the level of the 1870 flood carved into it.
Two living relics of the Condie era include the large Bunya Pine just behind the old homestead and the large Oak in the picnic ground. Most of the Silky Oaks also date from the early farming period.
Besides farming, another key activity in the area was the logging of Red Cedar. Bengalee Creek (the creek under the bridge on Koloona Drive) was the main port for cedar collection in the Cambewarra region. Remains of the concrete dock can still be seen as can many, many tree stumps throughout the Reserve.
THE CONDIES - BY NELL WATSON
(Collected by Jim Walliss) (Edited by Len White 2018)
In 1849, my Great Grandfather came to Australia from Dysads, Scotland. He sailed in the ship “Diane” with his wife and six daughters and son aged between 18 years and six months. He settled on a property at Bellfield, Longreach on the Shoalhaven River, about 8 miles west of Nowra. The property was passed down to the eldest son in each generation, never to be sold or mortgaged.