‘Ophir Bill’, Local Fossicking Expert & Legend
They say fossicking is in the blood and that is definitely true for local expert and legend ‘Ophir Bill’ Schmich. The Schmich family tree extends back to the 1850s when Bill Schmich’s great grandparents left Germany and followed the dream of massive gold finds in the antipodes. Bill began searching for gold, in and around Ophir, as a five-year-old in 1946 and he has been in love with the area ever since. He held a claim to mine for many years immersing himself in Ophir and extending his passion to old coins, cutlery and other historic paraphernalia. There is not a part of Ophir that he isn’t familiar with. Part of the very fabric of the area, Bill used his extensive knowledge leading tours and assisting the development of events celebrating the gold rush era in Ophir.