Patrick Hannan (known affectionately as Paddy Hannan), was born in county Clare, Ireland in 1843.

At the age of 22, he came to Australia and worked for some years on various gold diggings at Ballarat and Bendigo. He then mined in New Zealand for years, returning to Australia to prospect in New South Wales and Southern Cross. Today, there is a shaft a little distance out of Southern Cross which is known as Paddy Hannan’s Shaft.

When Bayley and Ford found and reported their rich discovery at Coolgardie on 17th September 1892, Hannan and his friend, Tom Flanagan, travelled to the new find and took up claims on one of the gullies of Coolgardie. This venture was not very successful.

In June 1893, news of the Mt Youle rush resulted in a general exodus from Coolgardie. Included in this, were Hannan, Flanagan and Daniel O'Shea.

At a point, 25 miles to the East, they were delayed, and during their enforced stay, they found gold in the small gullies close to the findings which are now called Mt Charlotte, Hannan’s Hill and Mt Gledden.

On the 17th June, Hannan rode back to Coolgardie to register the new find and to apply for a reward claim, taking with him about 100 ounces of gold nuggets.

His arrival at Coolgardie caused intense excitement and nearly the entire population of the town packed up to move to the new find. It was not thought to be much at first, but things improved a great deal after discoveries were made a mile or so further South.

Neither Hannan, nor his friends, made very much out of their discovery and Paddy, needing a holiday badly, left the area in 1894.

When he returned in 1897, Kalgoorlie had become a very busy bustling place and he found himself very warmly welcomed by the people of the town. A function was arranged, a tree planted near the site of his first find and he was granted a Government payment of three pounds a week for a number of years. The original tree has not survived but the latest replacement was planted in 1993, on the centenary of Paddy’s discovery.

After some years in Western Australia, Paddy retired to Victoria and died at Brunswick on 4th November 1925, at the age of 82 years. He is buried at Melbourne Cemetery.


The original Paddy Hannan Statue was erected in 1929. This statue has been refurbished and is now located inside the Kalgoorlie Town Hall where it can be viewed free of charge.

Paddy-Hannan-1
This more durable replica of Paddy Hannan was erected in 1983. Here, Paddy awaits for you to take his photo and even refresh yourself with a drink from his waterbag.