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Katharine Susannah Prichard's House


Shire of Mundaring

Place Number

There no heritage location found in the Google fusion table.


11 Old York Rd Greenmount

Location Details

Other Name(s)

Katharine's Place

Local Government




Construction Date

Constructed from 1929, Constructed from 1896

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents More information
Heritage List YES 08 Mar 2016
State Register Registered 28 Feb 1995 Register Entry
Assessment Documentation
Heritage Council

Heritage Council Decisions and Deliberations

Type Status Date Documents
(no listings)

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management More information
Category Description
Municipal Inventory Adopted 22 Apr 1997 1 - Exceptional significance

1 - Exceptional significance

Rare or outstanding example; essential to the heritage of the locality Expectations: The place should be retained and conserved. Any alterations or extensions should reinforce the significance of the place and be in accordance with a Conservation Plan if one is in place.

Register of the National Estate Permanent 16 Apr 1991

Heritage Council
Classified by the National Trust Classified 04 Nov 1983

Heritage Council
Survey of Women's Employment AHC Recorded 01 Sep 2002

Heritage Council

Statement of Significance

Katharine's Place has very high historic significance for it's associations with Katharine Susannah Pritchard, Hugo Throssell VC and the Rev. Percy U Henn; very high social significance as a writer's centre, an illustration of a writer's way of life and as a typical turn of the century semi-rural house/lifestyle; and high aesthetic significance for the house in it's rambling garden setting complete with very large, old pine tree that provides something of a local landmark.

Physical Description

Katharine's Place is located in rambling gardens moulded around the natural slope and granite features of its Greenmount site. A very large old pine tree on the site provides a landmark for the surrounding neighbourhood. Various elements of granite stonework such as the pergola columns and low walls provide a comfortable transition between the timber, weatherboard house and its 'natural' garden setting.
The 1896 weatherboard house, originally of typical four roomed plan with central passage and surrounding verandas is still intact although some veranda enclosures have modified its form. The roof is of corrugated iron, in typical hipped form. Outbuildings, comprising wash-house, WC and Katharine Susannah Prichard's 1929 writing studio are also of weatherboard and compliment the house. The exception is the modern carport attached to the old wash-house. Unfortunately the old WC is collapsing under the weight of an old pine tree and vines.
Internally, the four main rooms of the house retain their lath and plaster walls and ceilings, unadorned by ceiling roses or cornices. Floors and skirting are of timber and doors are four panelled type.
For more complete descriptions of the place and its significance, see the Heritage Council of WA descriptions for Interim Register Entry and Campbell, R.McK., and van Bremen I.H., Katharine's Place, Greenmount: Conservation Report (June 1993).


Katharine Susannah Prichard's house in Old York Road, Greenmount, was built in c. 1896 by a tenant on land owned by auctioneer and former Visiting Magistrate, James Morrison. The land had been part of Captain James Stirling's original 4,000 acre Swan Location 16, later owned by Henry Brockman. In 1910, part of the land, including Lot 51, which contained the four room home, and the adjoining Lot 52, were purchased and used as a weekender by Guildford Grammar School founding Headmaster, Rev. Percy Henn. In c. 1919/1920, the 2 lots, and 140 acres to the south of the York Road (Great Eastern Highway) were purchased by Hugo (Jim) Throssell, V.C. Winner and son of former State Premier and Northam identity, George Throssell. In Melbourne in January 1919, Hugo Throssell had married Fijian-born writer, Katharine Susannah Prichard, and moved to Western Australia. Their association with the Greenmount house continued until Katharine died in October 1969.
Katharine Susannah Prichard's writing reflected her interests in social and political issues, and whilst at Greenmount she enhanced her already established literary reputation with novels such as Working Bullocks (1926) and Coonardoo (1928). She helped establish the W.A. Branch of the Communist Party and was actively involved in the W.A. Fellowship of Writers.
During the 1920's and 1930's, changes tot he property included the establishment of the garden addition of a northern aspect verandah, and a separate weatherboard workroom, financed by prize money Katharine received fo rthe novel "Coonardoo". Following Jim Throssell's suicide in 1933, few changes were made to the house until the 1970's, when after Katharine Susannah Pritchard's death, P & S Lewis altered the garden and house, opening it as "Megalong Gallery" in 1974. A plaque was placed on the house to celebrate the centenary of Katharine Susannah Pritchard's birth in 1884. In 1984, the State Government purchased Lot 51 and vested it in the Shire of Mundaring. At Present the house is on a 21 year lease to the Katharine Susannah Pritchard Foundation who use the property for a Writer in Residence programme and literary meetings.


Integrity: High, despite modifications over the years and adaption as a writer's centre.
Modifications: Verandah enclosures.


good, sound condition


Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
HCWA assessment for Katharine Place1681 HCWA
R MCK Campbell, IH van Bremen; "Katharine's Place Greenmount: Conservation Report". 1993
I Elliot; ibid pp. 212-213

State Heritage Office library entries

Library Id Title Medium Year Of Publication
81 Katharine's Place, Greenmount : conservation report. Heritage Study {Cons'n Plan} 1993

Place Type

Individual Building or Group


Epoch General Specific
Present Use SOCIAL\RECREATIONAL Other Community Hall\Centre
Original Use RESIDENTIAL Single storey residence

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Other STONE Granite
Wall TIMBER Weatherboard
Roof METAL Corrugated Iron

Historic Themes

General Specific
PEOPLE Famous & infamous people

Creation Date

30 May 1989

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

10 Feb 2017


This information is provided voluntarily as a public service. The information provided is made available in good faith and is derived from sources believed to be reliable and accurate. However, the information is provided solely on the basis that readers will be responsible for making their own assessment of the matters discussed herein and are advised to verify all relevant representations, statements and information.