Community History

The Library works closely with local historical societies, our Library Friends group, and other interested community members, to preserve the important history of the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale for future generations.

Community History Page Image 490 x 290
The Libraries community history collection features books, brochures, historical photographs, private papers of local identities, records of localorganisations, oral history interviews and other interesting items of a bygone era, relating to the Shire. The Library isalso  developing a website which will allow access to this historical information by members of the public.

Items in the community history collection can be viewed by visiting the Library. 

Community History Focus

The Busetti's of Serpentine

By Jan Skillington 

  • The Busettis of Serpentine

    Busetti Family - Epifanio, Nelson Antonio (baby), Maria (nee Nicolini), Sifrido, and Anacleto. Taken on their property in Serpentine.

Sifrido Busetti was born in 1893 in Italy, his wife, Maria (nee Nicolini), in 1900. They married in 1922. By 1926 when Sifrido migrated to Australia, they had one child, Epifanio and Maria was pregnant with their second child, Anacleto.

On arriving in Australia Sifrido worked on a fruit farm in Renmark and later moved to Bullfinch in Western Australia.

In 1936, Sifrido was joined in Bullfinch by his family from Italy and later that same year they purchased a 100-acre farm in Serpentine where they lived until 1948. They then purchased 600 acres in Cowaramup, a property more suitable for their growing family.

Sifrido and Maria had two more children who were born in Australia, Nelson, born in 1939 but sadly died of Diphtheria in 1939, and Luigi in 1940.

Community History Sound Byte

Click the links below to listen to the Community History audio files.

A past employee of the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale, Rob Gibb, talks about the SJ shire offices built in 1949 and how the walk-in safe was constructed with worn out grader blades in the cavity walls for security.
Recorded at the SJ Community Fair 2014 as part of the Mundijong Library’s oral history program, "SJ Remembers”.

A resident of Jarrahdale, Cheryl Trueman, tells how she came to live there.
Recorded at the SJ Community Fair 2014 as part of the Mundijong Library’s oral history program, "SJ Remembers”.

A resident of Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale for 36 years talks about her first memory of a fair in the area.

An interview with Geoff Wholagan. The Wholagan family ran the Mundijong bakehouse from 1952 to the early 1980s. In this sound byte Geoff describes the brick oven called a Scotch oven, how it was used and maintained.

Ernie and Doris George had very fertile land on Nettleton Road, Byford where he grew vegetables and supplied them to Plaistowe's canning company in West Perth. 

They supplemented their income by cutting timber for Bill's uncle who collected it from them, and other cutters in the area, and sold it for firewood. 

Bill describes how Ernie adapted his tractor and recycled items to build their house and household items.