Mundrabilla is a small settlement on the Nullarbor Plain, 62 kilometres west of Eucla and 115 kilometres east of Madura near the Hampton Tablelands where there are small caves and sinkholes. It is 20kms from the Great Australian Bight. Mundrabilla provides services for the traveller and sheep stations in the area.
Mundrabilla is famous for the unique meteorites found in the area. These meteorites are studied in the space station by NASA. The huge “Mundrabilla Meteorite” takes pride of place in the South Australian Museum foyer where it can be viewed and touched. This meteorite of about 6 tonnes was discovered half buried at Mundrabilla. The first attempt to remove it broke the front end loader and so a hole was dug. It was then tipped into a ute, which trundled off with sagging springs to the railway and delivered to Adelaide.
Several weeks were spent cutting it and samples have been sent overseas to scientific institutions. The patterns in the metal have been caused by slow cooling. Museum education officer Simon Langsford says it's marvelous to think of the meteorite floating around in space for millions of years and now it is here for anyone to put their hands on!
Mundrabilla was settled in the early 1870s after brothers Tom and John Kennedy joined forces with married couple Bill and Annie McGill and attempted to drove sheep to establish a property between Eucla and Esperance. Vast distances and lack of water defeated them and so they settled at Mundrabilla. Tragically Tom Kennedy was later speared to death and in 1879 Annie McGill died during childbirth.
During the 1920s it was hoped significant underground water might be discovered in the region for the Indian Pacific Railway steam trains. Numerous boreholes were sunk, but hopes faded with the discovery of solid bedrock of granite and no water was found.