Galong is located in pretty farming country between Harden and Boorowa.
Galong shares Boorowa’s Irish heritage and is known for its remarkable walled cemetery, which is on the Register of the National Trust. Graves date back to 1854 and the cemetery features some spectacular monuments in marble and sandstone. Today, the village is home to the St Clement’s Retreat and Conference Centre, in a historic monastery on a 300-hectare property. The Galong Railway Station has a heritage listing.
GALONG'S HISTORIC ATTRACTIONS
Galong Cemetery had its beginning as a burial ground provided by Edward Ryan, probably as early as the 1820s, for family and employees on his extensive estates. It gradually developed into a cemetery for the Irish Catholic population, clergy and religious in the area before eventually coming under the administration of the former Harden Shire Council as a general cemetery.
The Friends of Galong Cemetery were established in 1994 and obtained grants from the Heritage Council of NSW with further assistance from the Harden Shire Council, the Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn.
Using expert masons and local voluntary labour the cemetery was restored and in 1999 their endeavours were rewarded with a National Trust Heritage Award.
There are many striking features in this small cemetery. Two soaring marble monuments over graves of the Ryan Family were carved by the renowned monumental mason and sculptor Frank Rusconi and are said to have cost 1,000 pounds each – a fortune back then. Vaults erected for the Murphy and Ryan families and a most beautiful coped granite wall around the entire site are others.
Access to the cemetery is along a marked pathway accessed from the main driveway.