Freo's View


Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle port, history, Uncategorized, western australia by freoview on January 12, 2019


cy o'connor


Yesterday, January 11, was the birthday of CY O’Connor, who no doubt was one of Freo’s and Western Australia’s greatest pioneers.

Charles Yelverton O’Connor built the Fremantle harbour and also the 530km long water pipeline from Perth to Kalgoorlie, but sadly he received a lot of criticism from politicians and the Sunday Times and became quite depressed. He killed himself at South Beach on March 10, 1902. A sculpture in the Indian Ocean by Tony Jones reminds us of CY’s sad ending.

CY O’Connor was born in Gravelmouth, Castletown, County Westmead in the Republic of Ireland on January 11, 1843 and migrated to New Zealand as a 21 year-old.

He became Engineer-in-Chief of Western Australia in 1891.

I very often tell the remarkable and sad story of Charles Yelverton to tourists at the Roundhouse, because I consider him to be one of the great pioneers of our state and Fremantle.

Roel Loopers


Posted in art, fremantle, history by freoview on September 24, 2014

Charles Yelverton O'Connor

Engineer Charles Yelverton O’Connor is a very important man in Fremantle’s and Western Australia’s history. He created Fremantle Harbour and built the Perth to Kalgoorlie water pipeline. Sadly he killed himself at South Beach.

On Friday artist Jo Darvall will honour C.Y. when her exhibition C.Y.O’Connor-Myth&Legacy opens at the Moores Building Contemporary Arts Centre in Henry Street. Walking the Pipeline to the Waters End will be the first in a series of three shows.

For all who love history and art, this should be a great show, especially since Darvall also refers to Sidney Nolan and Ned Kelly in her work.

Roel Loopers

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