Watercolour of the Saltworks 1874,
by Sarah Mitchell
Salt was used in the early years of the colony for preserving food and hides. It was also used in the manufacture of articles such as soap and earthenware. Most supplies were imported from England at relatively high cost.
The Lisdillon salt works were one of a number of small scale, speculative works established in Van Diemens Land to meet colonial needs. The Site is one of only two early salt manufacture works in eastern Australia where substantial remains can still be found (the other being at Norfolk Island). The ruins here form an intriguing and highly significant part of the industrial heritage of Tasmania and Australia. A close examination of the structures and the surrounding landscape reveal much about the early process of salt making.