Towns in Australia

Exploring Australia, town by town

Birdwood SA


Postcode: 5234

Birdwood is a town near Adelaide, South Australia. It is located in the Adelaide Hills Council local government area.

Formerly known as Blumberg, the German town name was anglicized during World War I, along with many others in the region in 1917. The new name honoured Sir William Birdwood, the Australian Imperial Force general who led the Anzacs at Gallipoli. The original name’s origins are uncertain but some Prussian settlers originating from a village of that name is the most likely source.

Migrants who had temporarily settled at Lobethal began looking for land of their own in 1848. Pastor Fritzsch recommended this spot beside the Torrens, where he camped on the way to Bethany. Birdwood grew with homes on land leased from G F Angas and a church some distance away. The town prospered by the 1850s, and the area was producing enough grain to justify the construction of the Blumberg Flour Mill (now the site of the motor museum). In 1865, during the local gold rush, the Blumberg Inn was built.

Birdwood once had a train station on the Mt. Pleasant train line at 44.13 miles (71 km) from Adelaide. The line came via Balhannah and was not a very direct route. The line was closed during one of the rail reformations as it was not a very profitable line, probably due to the more direct Adelaide-Mannum road. The track is now long gone but the earthworks can still be seen along the edges of the Birdwood flat to Mt Torrens and towards Mt Pleasant. Also still standing is an old stone railway bridge near Mt Torrens.