The Cooks River was the ‘fine freshwater stream’ that Captain Cook wrote about in his account of the landing at Botany Bay and remarked on the ‘fine meadows’ along the banks of the river. The Dictionary of Sydney’s ‘fine stream … fine meadow’ project encompasses fourteen stories that connect to the Cooks River as it flows through to Botany Bay.
In partnership with three local council areas, the City of Botany Bay, Marrickville Council and the City of Canterbury, the Dictionary engaged local researchers, authors and historians to document some of the significant buildings, the people and the events that have shaped the stories of the Cooks River in south-west Sydney.
In 2013, the resulting articles were published after being professionally edited, enhanced with multimedia images and depictions of the area, and fully linked and integrated into the Dictionary’s website. The articles can be viewed here.
The Dictionary of Sydney would like to thank all the authors, institutions and multimedia donors who contributed to this project. We would especially like to thank Brian Madden and the Cooks River Alliance for allowing us to publish works by the late Lesley Muir whose essays on this part of Sydney’s history form the centrepiece of our project.
Entries in the Cooks River project:
- Aboriginal people of the Cooks River Valley by Lesley Muir
- Bark huts and country estates: European settlement along the Cooks River by Lesley Muir
- From a fine stream to an industrial watercourse: the transformation of the Cooks River Valley by Lesley Muir
- Urban growth in the Cooks River valley by Lesley Muir
- Industry in the Cooks River valley by Lesley Muir
- Canterbury Park Racecourse by Brian Madden and Lesley Muir
- Canterbury Sugarworks by Brian Madden and Lesley Muir
- The Prout’s Bridge incident by Brian Madden and Lesley Muir
- Booralee fishing town by Joanne Sippel
- Damming the Cooks River by Vanessa Witton
- First people of the Cooks River by Paul Irish
- From Sheas Creek to Alexandra Canal by Ron Ringer
- Managing the Cooks River today: The Cooks River Alliance
- Servicing Sydney’s thirst by MacLaren North