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Biographical entry D'Alton, John (c. 1829 - 1904)

c. 1829
Kilkenny, Ireland
30 September 1904
Stawell, Victoria, Australia
Civil engineer


John D'Alton was Borough Engineer for the district of Stawell in Western Victoria. His most significant contribution was the design and building of an innovative water supply system that served the community for over 130 years. The design included a 12km timber flume constructed over rough terrain and of sufficient gradient to require no pumps: this is Victoria's only surviving extensive above-ground water supply flume system. To build the necessary 1km tunnel, D'Alton used the new explosive dynamite and cutting-edge Australian technology of steam-powered air compressors and rock drills.

Published resources

Journal Articles

  • Peake, Owen, 'Stawell water supply - sources in the Victorian Grampians: a tale of a visionary engineer and great engineering achievement', Engineering Heritage Australia Magazine, 1 (7) (2015), 18-20. Details


Helen Cohn