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Mourilyan

Mourilyan is a town and locality in the Cassowary Coast Region, Queensland, Australia. It was established around the Mourilyan sugar mill which provided much of the employment in the area until it was destroyed by Cyclone Larry on 20 March 2006.GeographyThe town is located 8km south of Innisfail on the Bruce Highway.HistoryConstruction of the Mourilyan sugar mill began in 1882, rendering it among the oldest in Australia. Excavation of the site was undertaken mainly by Kanakas, with assistance from Chinese and Anglo-Saxon labourers. After its completion in 1884, the mill had a processing capacity of 14 tonnes of sugar per 12-hour shift.In 1913, the Colonial Sugar Refining Company (now CSR) began purchasing sugar refined at the mill. Mourilyan remained a small settlement, growing only very slowly since.Mourilyan Post Office opened by September 1910 (a receiving office had been open from 1884 when the mill opened).Mourilyan is prone to tropical cyclones; in 1918, a cyclone caused serious damage to the mill and surrounding community, having a drastic effect on sugar production in that year. In 1986, Cyclone Winifred also caused substantial damage to the area.Cyclone Larry caused substantial damage to many households in the area, and destroyed the town's main source of employment. A major effort by the Australian Defence Force helped restore Mourilyan Primary School to functioning capacity. Insurance payouts have helped to repair residential and commercial properties.
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