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Penola is a town in the Australian state of South Australia located about southeast of the state capital of Adelaide in the wine growing area known as the Coonawarra. At the, Penola had a population of 1,317.It is known as the central location in the life of Mary MacKillop (St. Mary of the Cross), the first Australian to gain Roman Catholic sainthood, who alongside Julian Tenison Woods in 1866 established the first free Catholic school using the Woods/MacKillop Catholic education system in Australia, St. Joseph's School. Woods and MacKillop also established in Penola 'her' order of nuns, the Congregation of the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart. The order, otherwise known as the 'Josephites' or 'Brown Joeys', continue to work with the poor and needy communities throughout the world today.Penola was on the Mount Gambier to Wolseley railway line which opened in 1887 until its closure to freight on 12 April 1995 and then to Limestone Coast Railway tourist passengers in June 2006.HistoryThe first Europeans to the area were the Austin brothers who arrived in 1840 and established a run of 109 square miles . The first settlers were Scottish-born Alexander Cameron and his wife Margaret in January 1844 after obtaining an occupation licence. In April 1850, Cameron obtained 80 acres of freehold land and established the private town of Panoola, later known as Penola.Put Penola at the heart of your travel plans by using our Australia online trip maker.
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