The building and design of Camden Park House, which preoccupied the mind of John Macarthur in the last years of his life, was begun by his sons, James and William, in 1832 and completed in 1835, a year after John's death.
Architect, John Verge, designed a mansion in the Palladian style with a central two-storey block with one-storey wings and extensions at each side. The rich farming heritage of the Macarthur region can be traced back to as early as 1795 when Governor Hunter went in search of stray cattle and found them settled by the Nepean River, in an area he later named "The Cowpastures", a name which is still in use today.
When John Macarthur was granted 5000 acres of the best pasture land in the colony, he promptly selected The Cowpastures and proceeded to establish Camden Park Estate, which became one of the finest estates in the nation.
Camden Park House, which has become one of the great mansions of Australia, is still occupied by the Macarthur family, and is in fact thought to be one of the oldest residences in the country still occupied by descendents of its founder. The family burial ground, carefully established over the decades, is located nearby and is the last resting place of John Macarthur and his direct descendents.
In 1950, Camden Park confirmed it was no mere relic of a grand historical past, but the farm of the future. The Rotolactor was the ultimate in modern milking machinery. It was developed in New Jersey. U.S.A. and brought to Australia by Liutenant-Colonel Edward Macarthur-Onslow. The plans were drawn locally and the foundation stone laid in 1950. The building was finished in September 1952.
Camden Park House is open to the public on the third weekend in September and at other times for group tours by arrangement.
Camden Park House Historic Property
Elizabeth Macarthur Ave,
Ph: (02) 4655 8466
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