We welcome you to explore our amazing past.


Orroroo, originally inhabited by the Ngadjuri people, was first explored by Edward John Eyre and his party from 1839.

Historic rock carvings are located along the Pekina Creek walking trail estimated to be many thousands of years old. In 1865 the Surveyor-General of South Australia, George Woodroffe Goyder, mapped his controversial line of demarcation between the pastoral areas and the cereal-growing country. The Hundred of Walloway Broad Acres was the first land for settlement opened up for sale in 1876. Most of the settlers held 640-acre blocks, many had little finance and no experience of the harsh realities of the North, and were trying to “eke” out a living by growing wheat. By 1878, Orroroo was a very small settlement expanding into allotments in town.

Orroroo district is known for seasons ‘Good and Bad’. Some years were prosperous on the land, others successive years of low rainfall, duststorms to extremes of creek floodings.

An extract from the book ‘Orroroo – Rendezvous of the Magpie’ by Nancy Parnell published by the Orroroo Centenary Committee describes the fabric of Orroroo succulently

“The first colourful years of the Orroroo district were typical of fi rst settlements throughout Australia. The settlers, English, Irish, Scottish, Cornish and German, havewoven the basic fabric of Australia. Being geographically solely a pastoral and agricultural area, the essence of life has remained unchanged for one hundred years…

In winter, one may pause on the road in the Walloway hills and gaze over the rolling plains adorned in a myriad of greens. In summer, the scene changes to paddocks of golden grass, with columns of purple Salvation Jane tracing the water courses, the creeks etched with dark gum trees, the entire scene encircled by hills of ever-changing color”. Copies of this book commemorating Orroroo history are available from the Visitor Information Centre.

Historical Society Archives

Orroroo Historical Society is located in the former Masonic Lodge building on Fourth Street. There are displays, artefacts and archives capturing the history of the district.

Featured are some of the people who have been instrumental as early pioneers. Extensive information can be found on the engineering of the Pekina Irrigation Scheme in 1906, the award winning Walloway Butter Factory, entrepreurship, medical equipment and stories of hardship and tragedies such as the Walloway train crash.

Volunteers cherish the opportunity to help you make the most of your visit. You are also welcome to take the opportunity to wander through the newly renovated Memorial Town Hall in the main street, the Hall has our Kings Prize Trophy and various Honour Boards on display.

Please arrange a visit via the local Visitor Information Centre.