A settlement was established beside a stock route on the boundary between the Woodlands and Decameron runs in 1848 when a Mr. Robert Bazely established an Inn.
The traditional owners of the land on which this settlement was established were the BurungBalug clan of the DjadaWurrung tribe.
They had occupied the land for some 5000 years prior to settlement.
A Mr.Robert Mackay opened a second Inn in 1850.
To the despair of the locals, this Inn burnt to the ground in August 1895.
With the advent of the Mount Alexander Goldfield, in late 1851, the now thriving settlement became a wayside stop for diggers as it was on the South Australian gold escort route.
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In 1855 the settlement was surveyed and named the Township of Navarre, after theancient Spanish Kingdom of Navarra in the Pyrenees Mountains of Europe.
A Government Camp Reserve included a Police Station and a Court of Petty Sessions.
Navarre was proclaimed a township on September 13, 1861.
Early prospecting in the district revealed gold, but not in payable quantities as the rushes to the "Navarre Diggings" in 1859 and 1861 were to the east, near the present township of Barkly.
Seven years later, the township included a store, hotel and a postal service.
A Primary School was established in 1864. The school has survived some turbulent times over the years having burnt down twice in its long history the last being in July 1961.
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On December 24, 1866, 58 acres were set aside for a horse racing and a general recreation reserve.
A race track was established at the reserve and in 1911, the Navarre Football Club was established with a football oval being established in the centre of the race track.
A nine hole golf course was also established on the land surrounding the race track.
In the "Stawell News and Pleasant Creek Chronicle" on Wednesday September 24, 1924 it was reported that the rising and prosperous township boasted a bakers shop, butchers shop, fruit shop, general store and a 17 room Coffee Palace.
An imposing timber grandstand was being built in the Recreation Reserve at a cost of 800 pounds. It was to seat 600 patrons. The Grandstand was officially opened at the New Years Day Races on January 1, 1925.
It was built to a design by Mr. J. Irwin, an architect from Ararat and built by Mr. Jas. Whitely of Avoca.
The New Year's Day Race Meetings ended when the passenger trains stopped running to Navarre in 1931.
The Navarre Railway Line was opened in 1914 with trains running regularly from Ararat to Navarre with stops at Tulkara, Landsborough, Joel, Crowlands, Ben Nevis and Dunneworthy.
Passenger services were withdrawn on the Navarre Line on June 15, 1931, although freight services continued to run until 1954.
Electricity was switched on in the town in 1964 and a grand switch on ball was held to celebrate the amazing changes that electricity was going to provide to Navarre on the edge of the Australian Pyrenees.
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