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An elephant in Smithfield?

An elephant in Smithfield?
Published 24 August 2017
Why did the elephant cross the road? To plough the fields.

Why did the elephant cross the road? To plough the fields. This is what Tommy the elephant actually did in Smithfield in 1855. ^^ Tommy the elephant being taken onboard for his long journey to Australia from Calcutta, India. An Indian elephant purchased by Smithfield founder, John Smith, was put to work using a plough that had been attached to a reversed horse-collar with portions of a bullock-chain attached to each side. Although strong, Tommy proved to be too slow at farm work and was sold to Charles Matthews, licensee of the Gepps Cross Hotel.

In 1857, Tommy was contracted to the South Australian Railway Commissioners to assist with the construction of the Adelaide to Gawler Railway line between Salisbury and Smithfield, hauling heavy materials.

The Elephant Walk at the corner of Anderson Walk and Morialta Drive, Smithfield, is named for this fascinating piece of Playford history.