In the 1880s, the Woodman Point Quarantine Station was established to isolate immigrants from the community whilst being cleared of smallpox, bubonic plague and Spanish influenza which was ravaging Europe, the Americas and Asia.
During World War 1, HMAT Boonah was the last Australian troop ship to leave Fremantle, Western Australia bound for the Middle East in October 1918. Carrying about 1200 AIF soldiers, she arrived in Durban, South Africa just three days after the armistice was signed and on hearing the news, made arrangements to return home promptly. Before her departure however, local stevedores from the Spanish Flu stricken city were used to load and unload supplies from the ship and in the course of doing so infected soldiers who were billeted in crowded conditions throughout the ship.
300 of the most unwell soldiers were ferried ashore to the Quarantine Station at Woodman Point south of Fremantle. Three men died on the first day at the station. The condition of some deteriorated further with more dying as well as more than 20 nursing and medical staff becoming infected.
Due to the bravery, compassion and skills from those who staffed the station, most survived.
The facility continued to be used intermittently as a quarantine station until about 1979 when it closed.
The Albany gaol was established in 1852 for imperial convicts transported to Albany as skilled labourers. It initially consisted of a cell block for convicted men and quarters for the warden. The gaol was built with rehabilitation as a key principle and served not only to house inmates but as a hiring depot. Convicts who were sentenced to transportation from…