Katanning is the regional commerce centre of one of the most prosperous agricultural districts in the State.
The founding father of Katanning was Frederick Henry Piesse, an entrepreneurial merchant who saw the potential of the Great Southern Railway. He opened the Katanning Roller Flour Mill in 1891. Utilising local wheat was at the heart of the town's economic success. The Piesse grand family mansion, Kobeelya, was built in 1902, a seven bedroom mansion with a billiard room, hot and cold running water, a ballroom, tennis courts and croquet field.
Every building between the Mill and Piesse's statue was built by Piesse or built using bricks from Piesse's brickworks. The entire Piesse complex was supplied with electric power generated by the flour mill machinery. In 1902 Katanning became the first country town in WA to have street lighting.
Today, more than a hundred years after its foundation, Katanning remains an important centre for trading stock and agricultural products. Every Wednesday Katanning Sale Yards come alive with thousands of sheep for sale, dozens of barking sheep dogs and buyers. There is a viewing platform for spectators. Over one million sheep a year pass through the yards, one of the largest in Australia.
The export abattoir opened in 1974, and with the arrival of a large number of Christmas Islander workers and their families, Katanning became a town of cultural diversity.
Katanning-Piesse Heritage Trail includes the story and directions to the town's major sights. Other attractions include Katanning Historical Museum, All Ages Playground and the Miniature Railway.
For further information call into:
Katanning Tourist Centre at the Old Mill