Kookynie was a thriving town in the early 1900s and could boast many hotels, boarding houses, stores and a railway siding, all generated by the many gold miners who came from near and far. Men arrived from Europe and many from eastern states. It was home to many families including John Edwin Peers WX9197 from 2/4th. His father and two uncles were prominent in holding local council and government positions. John Peers was born 1903 at Kookynie and lived his early years here and Kalgoorlie, prior to his father enlisting in 1916 for WW1.
Tragically John Peers known as Jack died aged 38 years at Australian General Hospital, Roberts Barracks Singapore on 6 March 1942 from shrapnel wounds received during the fighting. It is probable he was injured at Hill 200, or even during the last days of fighting when the troops were defending the city of Singapore.
Jack had been working at a farm hand at Pingrup for for about 4 years prior to enlisting on 30 Oct 1940.
John’s father died in Perth on 14 February 1942 as Jack lay ill in Roberts Barracks.
Below: Kookynie’s Public Hospital.
Above: Pope’s Store
Below: Rea’s Store
We wish to acknowledge and thank the Eastern Goldfields History site for the above photographs