C.Y. O'Connor was a brilliant Irish-born engineer. In 1895 he was asked to produce a plan to pipe water from near Perth in Western Australia to the goldfields of Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie, a distance of almost 600 kilometres. He also designed a massive dam and weir to store the water. He was harshly treated by the Press at the time who described the scheme as 'foolhardy' and 'a waste of public money'. The pipeline is still in use today and he is now regarded as a genius.