Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Judd road House

Judd road homestead was built on the site of an old mud cottage, dating to the late 1800’s.  The present stone and brick house was built in the 1920’s by a local builder called Ames for Richard Judd, a grandchild of an early settler also named Richard Judd.
The Judd family has been associated with the Salisbury and Elizabeth districts, since the first Richard Judd came to the area around Cobblers creek (now Salisbury East) in 1851 with his brother Joseph.  One of the first Richards’s sons, George and later son Kevin farmed the site where the Holden’s factory now stands.
Richard and his brother Joseph were among the principal hay farmers in the district at the time.  The Northern Adelaide Plains between Salisbury, Smithfield and Virginia was a noted farming area.  Hay farming was at its peak between 1880’s and 1930’s.  At one stage the crop was expanding and to cut it with sickle took far more labour than was available, even though Governor Grey requested 150 soldier to be brought from New South Wales to help with the harvest.
When hay was the main crop on the farm. It was usually not the only one.  A typical farm close to Elizabeth would grow hay for the Adelaide dairies.  A team of eight horses would cart the hay on trolleys.  Wheat for seed and peas were grown to fatten sheep.
Eileen Judd, granddaughter of Robert stated that “Judd homestead was quite a big farm house, built of brick, stone in the front, a four roomed house, closed in back verandah.  A bathroom and heater that you put paper, wood and what have you in, for hot water, an old chip heater and there was a wooden stove in the kitchen.
During the building of Elizabeth, the house was used by the South Australian Housing Trust as their engineer’s site work office.  Judd road got its name as a result of the Housing Trust giving direction for when supplies came in.  They would say there is a sign up at the house called “Judd”.
Judd Road house is the only building within the Elizabeth district currently on the State Heritage Register.  The property is important historically, representing the farming traditions of the late 19th century and the first half of the 20th century in the area.
The City of Playford and the SAHT funded a project to restore the house to commemorate Elizabeth’s 40th year.

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