This is one of two hotels in the main street of Sovereign Hill (open air museum & replica gold fields town). The other one, with less photos, is across the road.
"Built in 1860 to store the gunpowder used in goldmining, the powder magazine was designed to minimise the risk of exploding. Only copper fittings were used, an elaborate lightning rod was fitted and people entering had to wear special shoes. Should an explosion have occurred, the design of the build would direct the blast safely upwards. The magazine was closed in 1918 and fell into decay. The roof was removed to stop vagrants sleeping there and it was almost demolished. The National Trust restored the building in 1966."
"Beechworth Powder Magazine was constructed in 1859 by T Dawson and Company. In 1857 the Victorian Government passed an act to regulate the importation, carriage and custody of black powder which led to the construction of several Powder Magazines throughout Victoria. According to the National Trust, the Beechworth Powder Magazine is the best example in Victoria of this particularly important building type.
The architecture of the building features a classical style in the tradition of the early colonial military buildings. It is constructed in local granite and includes sever safety precautions within the structure which directs a potential explosion upwards to minimise damage.
The Powder Magazine was no longer being used by the end of the 19th century and was officially closed in 1918 and abandoned. Neglected for many years, the building was left to decline until the 1960's when local interest was raised and a restoration process began. In 1965, the project was formally adopted by the National Trust and opened to public access."