Western Australia.
The 25 mile mines.

The Western Australian Goldfields Courier, published on 16 May 1896, carried the following article on page18:

The 25-Mile Mines

Measured miles in Western Australia are considerably longer than estimated miles. No doubt this is so in other parts of the world as well. But the northern route from Coolgardie to Menzies has been named at intervals by the estimated distances Thus the gold finds at the 25-Mile, the 42-Mile, the 46-Mile and the 90-Mile

The  telegraph line takes a direct route and it is marked by mile posts which disclose the fact that the 25 Mile is but a little over 19 miles in a direct line from Coolgardie In the same manner with the other places, the 42-Mile is 37 miles, the 45 is about 42 miles and the 90-Mile is only 63 miles from our town. The road taken by teams and coaches is somewhat more devious and the distance of the 25-Mile from Coolgardie by it is 22½ miles

The names of these places have been altered by the postal authorities but the new names have not yet come into common use. The postal name for the  25 Mile is Coonalion. At this place there is a Government dam, which has been constructed on the site of an old soak, and which consequently receives the drainage from a large, low granite rock. Here horses are watered at 2d per head. Near the dam, on the opposite side of the road, a well has been sunk by private enterprise and condensers have been erected. When the dam becomes dry, water from the condensers may be had at from 4d to 6d per gallon.

The township consists of two hotels and several stores and butchers' shops but the population which is a rather large one - probably over 2000 souls in the whole district - resides on the various mines. There is a convenient Post and Telegraph Office but the inhabitants complain that they suffer great inconvenience because there is no bank in the town.

There can be no doubt but that a banking company which will make it convenient to open a branch here will do a very good business The amount of money paid in wages must be very great. In one company alone there are from 160 to 200 men engaged at the rate of £4 per week each and the risk attending the conveyance of such large sums of money from Coolgardie along the road, which, it must be remembered, is but a bush track, is no slight one.

It should not be forgotten that Western Australia is attracting men from all parts of the world and amongst them there must be some desperate characters who would not hesitate at a little "sticking-up" job if the booty were commensurate with the risk

Hitherto we have been remarkably free from such affairs, but that is more owing to the fact that the population has been made up of genuine miners and prospectors, than whom there is none more law-abiding. Now, however, there is evidence of the arrival of certain kinds of land pirates and it behoves all interested in the progress of the fields to avoid unnecessary risks.

Banks, and the transmission of money by means of cheques, are the great preventives of highway robbery. A bank at the 25-Mile would very much minimise the risk.

Then too, the miners, when they get their pay, would probably make use of a Post Office Savings Bank, which the Government could very well open at the Post Office. At present, it is not possible even to obtain a Post Office Order or a Money Order at the Post Office.

The people of the 25-Mile are unanimous in wishing that these matters should be placed before the banking companies and before the Government.

The town is a permanent one and it is to have a railway station on the projected line to Menzies. Consequently the banking company which possess sufficient energy to establish itself first in this township should open up a lucrative and lasting business.