There was a strong Methodist presence in Silverton in the 1890s. The Methodist Church that stands today was built in 1885 as a place of worship for Presbyterians. When the original Methodist Church was destroyed in by strong winds in 1891, the Presbyterians gladly sold their building, owing to them being outnumbered.
The Presbyterian Minister of the time took the opportunity to enter the mining field, becoming somewhat of an expert before heading off to become a poet and journalist.
Silverton’s Cornish miners exerted a strong Protestant influence. They held a public meeting in 1884 to establish a Masonic Lodge. The “Umberumberka Lodge” was constituted the next year and dedicated in 1886. The first Freemason initiated into the lodge was Charles Rasp – one of the region’s most famous pioneers – who had donated the land on which the building was built.
One of the most recognisable buildings at Silverton is the St Carthage Catholic Church. The church has been home to artists such as Shane Gehlert, Albert Woodroffe, and has appeared on the big screen in the movie a Town Like Alice and has also appeared in numerous television commercials.
As the population of Silverton grew, so did the local school. Reading , writing and arithmetic were first handled out of a tent, which was pitched in 1884. A single-roomed, timber and iron building was built in 1887, housing 140 pupils and two teachers. The building that stands now was built in 1888. The Silverton Public School was closed in 1970. and reopend as a Museum in June 2009. Click here to find out more about the Silverton School Museum.
The Silverton Municipal Council was formed in 1886. Wile they worked for the betterment of the town, aldermen were uncertain as to whether a hall was necessary.
In 1889 it was put to the vote and ratepayers decided that the chambers should be constructed. Today, Silverton resides in the Unincorporated Area of NSW and so does not feature a City Council. It is run by the Silverton Village Committee, who to this day hold their quarterly meetingws in the Silverton Municipal Chambers.
Built in the 1880s, the Surveyor’s Cottage has led a rich and varied existence. It was originally used by a mining company as a survey office, and housed a resident surveyor up until the 1890s. Since then it has been used for a myriad of users, finding use as a store and even a private business. These days, the cottage is used as a kitchen for functions held in the Municipal Chambers.