Won Wron

Won Wron is a rural locality in south-eastern Victoria, 12 km north of Yarram and 170 km south-east of Melbourne. The origin of the name is obscure: an Aboriginal word or words is the most probable conjecture, and a less likely alternative is a corruption of the expression 'one (pastoral) run'.

Won Wron is situated in flat to undulating country with some alluvial flats. Farm settlers engaged in timber cutting and, after land clearing, in dairying. A school was opened in 1877. Dairying was assisted by the opening of a creamery in 1894, and a hall was opened in 1907.

In 1914 the Victorian Parliamentary Standing Committee on Railways reported on the prospects of building a line from Alberton to Won Wron via Yarram. They reported the growth in dairy output and fattening of livestock, but doubted the viability of agricultural crops. Mature timber, suitable for railway sleepers, would be marketed. The line was opened in 1923, and ushered in Won Wron's best period of activity. A general store (1924-74) and an Anglican church (c1937) were built. The railway, seldom a paying proposition, closed in 1953.

West of Won Wron there are the steep Strzelecki Ranges. The State Government established the Won Wron prison farm in 1968, the inmates being engaged mainly in re-afforestation and weed control. In 1988 there were 130 prisoners kept there. It closed in 2004. The site reopened in 2008 as the Wulgunggo Ngalu Learning Place, a culturally appropriate learning place that houses and supports up to 18 Koori men who are undertaking Community Correction Orders. It won the community corrections category of the 2010 International Corrections and Prisons Association (ICPA) awards.

Won Wron has reverted to a locality rather than a small village. Its school closed in 1994, but the Anglican church, the hall and the recreation reserve continued as community foci.

Won Wron's census populations have been:

census date population
1911 236
1933 227
1966 201
2006 257*
2011 192

* Includes environs

Further Reading

John Adams, From these beginnings: history of the Shire of Alberton (Victoria), Yarram, 1990

Judith McAninly, 100 years of entertainment at the Won Wron hall, Won Wron, 2007