Altona

For many years, the Tone-Herr brothers, Wesley and Allan, were the proprietors and owners of the New Port Railway Yard. Here they made and serviced rolling stock for the burgeoning railroads of Victoria, and here they employed a great many men to labour, to weld, to hammer and many another task.

These men and their families made their homes to the north and west of the Yard, in the area now known as Altona North. At the time, it was simply a part of Newport, but over the two decades that the brothers ran the workshop, they treated their workers well, and the workers responded with loyalty. The hundreds of men employed at the Yard formed their own four team football league, which the Tone-Herr brothers served as umpires for. Both brothers were loved, more or less in equal measure, by their workers and their families.

But the Tone-Herr brothers did not always agree with each other, and it was in this that a clear favourite for the affections of their workers arose. In 1880, the brothers were financing construction to the west of Seaholme – they built a pier and encouraged their workers to fish from it, even going so far as to hire a few fishing boats to serve the area. But to the east of Seaholme lay the Williamstown Racecourse. Wesley was of a puritanical bent, and wanted to buy the course so that it could be shut down. Allan was more sympathetic to the wishes of his workers, who enjoyed their gambling at the races each Saturday morning.

The original plan was to name the area for both brothers equally – it was to be called Tonerrville. But although both brothers had their partisans among their workforce, Allan had more, and his men insisted on naming the new township for him. And thus Altona was born. But Wesley’s supporters were not done. They failed to name the more westerly part of the suburb Westona (although a hundred years later, the Kennett government, blithely unaware of the actual history of the area, did name a train station for them), but they succeeded in naming the scrubby salt pans to the south west Altona Meadows, in a nice piece of irony.

Suburbs near Altona:

Laverton North Laverton North Laverton North Laverton North Brooklyn Yarraville Yarraville
Laverton North Laverton North Laverton North Altona North Altona North Altona North South Kingsville
Laverton North Laverton North Altona North Altona North Altona North Altona North Newport
Laverton North Laverton Altona Altona Altona Williamstown North Williamstown North
Laverton North Laverton Altona Altona Altona Williamtown Williamstown
Williams Landing Laverton Altona Altona Seaholme Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay
Seabrook Altona Meadows Altona Meadows Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay
Point Cook Point Cook Altona Meadows Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay
Point Cook Point Cook Point Cook Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay Port Phillip Bay