The Schoolmaster’s Residence – 19 Monaro Street


Pambula school teacher’s residence, C. 1880. Courtesy of the George Family Collection.

For many years, the local teacher and his family had to rent accommodation from the limited supply available, so you might expect the provision of a house specifically for their use would have been welcomed. Not quite.

Built in 1878, this sturdy stone teacher’s residence quickly became cause for complaint by the various occupants. Mr. Apsey, who arrived in 1879, was so unimpressed that he applied for a transfer from Pambula on a number of occasions, noting that “I have been and still am compelled to allow my six children to sleep in one bedroom; and the room intended for a front sitting room is converted into a kitchen and store-room where washing the children, cooking meals and eating them, with everything in the way of something else, creates a state of things somewhat funny but at the same time indescribably irritating, unpleasant and unwholesome.”

In 1890 a weatherboard dining room was added. Further repairs were undertaken in 1899, when it is believed that the stone extension, noticeable on the right-hand side of the building, was added.

After the school relocated to its current site, the department eventually constructed teacher accommodation there. This building was sold and remains a private residence today.


The old school master's residence at 19 Monaro Street in 1992, image courtesy of and copyright Pat Raymond.