Hello and welcome

Brisbane History West is a collaborative resource set up to provide an internet presence for the history groups in the inner south western suburbs that don’t have their own dedicated website.  Its purpose  is to supplement existing activities and encourage community awareness and participation in the study and recording of local history.

Each of the groups focus on specific geographical areas which jointly cover the present day suburbs of Chelmer, Corinda, Graceville, Indooroopilly, Oxley, St Lucia, Sherwood and Taringa. Arbitrary boundaries aside, with some subtle variations the area shares a common history.

If you are unfamiliar with the blog format this Home page has all the articles uploaded to date in chronological order. Each has been categorised so if you are looking to minimise scrolling click on the relevant Topic (right hand side margin for PC users). The articles are a mix of frequently asked questions, meeting notices, research notes and papers,  and general news items.

Please feel free to contact us if you are working on a project and are wondering how to share your research effort, contributions are welcome. The site is self-funded and supported by the participating groups and societies which rely solely on volunteer resources. The individual groups retain their independence.

The publication Brisbane Spreads West– A local history 1840 to 1901 is the combined work of a number of local groups and societies, drawing on their research of the history of the western and south western suburbs of Brisbane. It is available from the participating groups or from the State Library Book Shop

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Taringa History Group February Meeting

3pm Saturday 1 February 2020 at the Community Meeting Place, Josling Street, Toowong.  This month will be a general meeting to discuss current events and our programme for the rest of the year. All welcome

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Toowong and District Historical Society January Meeting

9.30am Friday 24 January 2020 at the Meeting Room, Toowong Library, Toowong Village Shopping Centre. Bring along an item of interest to share. Items of interest could be….. outdated kitchen appliances or tools from yester-year… stories and photos of family holidays… an item of vintage clothing lurking in your wardrobe… a piece of memorabilia which could be of interest… memories of happenings such as stories linked to the old family car or outings such as fishing. For further information tdhsoc@gmail.com

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Moggill Historical Society January Meeting

7pm Tuesday  21 January 2020 at the Media Room, Moggill State School. This month Neville Marsh and Judy Nissen will give an update on activities since the AGM and will talk about plans for 2020. These include completion of the cemetery memorial restoration with volunteer help, further work on World War 2 service personnel and other projects

For further details contact Bobby Vollmer secretary@moggillhistorical.org.au

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Richlands, Inala & Suburbs History Group December Meeting

Tuesday 10 December 2019. This meeting will be our end of year breakup, for further details contact secretary@rihghistory.org.au

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St Lucia History Group December Meeting

2pm Saturday 7 December 2018 at the Toowong Community Meeting Place, Josling Street, Toowong. This month will be our annual joint meeting with Taringa History Group. Please note 2pm start. For further information contact Andrew Darbyshire slhgcoordinator@gmail.com

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Warner’s Road north of the river

Diagram illustrating the provision made for road reserves as part of the initial sub-division of the area that would become St Lucia. 22 lots would be offered for sale (‘Portion’ numbers shown)

There has often been discussion at St Lucia History Group meetings about the reported difficulties experienced by the early European settlers accessing Brisbane in the late 1850s/early 1860s. The requirement to deliver their produce to market in town by rowboat is well recorded and reflects on the state of early road making.

When the surveyors prepared the original sub-division plans for St Lucia they included for ‘Government’ roads. In reality these were merely identified road reserves. They were provided to enable free access to each of the lots offered for sale, without the need for easements,  and in addition, common access to the riverbank. The individual lots (Portions) were in the order of 40 acres each and dedicated roads were kept to a minimum, road reserves generated no income. Interestingly the first lot offered, which was purchased in 1852, is described as Portion 7 of the Parish of Indooroopilly. It had no nominated road access. Continue reading

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St Lucia Farm School- ‘The gate of opportunity is wide open to the boy who passes through St Lucia’

The St Lucia Farm School was established as one of the state government’s responses to the 1930s economic depression brought about by the world wide slump in trade. Post Federation Australia was still reliant on its major trading partner the UK (60% of trade) and when demand there for Australian goods plummeted thousands were thrown out of work. Up to 27% of the Queensland workforce was out of a job by 1932 and others were on part time.

The rapid rise in unemployment coincided with the election of the first ‘conservative’ government in Queensland for 14 years. The Labor party had held office since 1915 headed successively  by TJ Ryan, Ted Theodore, William Gilles and then William McCormack. They were elected on a platform of improving the lot of the working man and introduced a number of social reforms. Perhaps one of their most significant actions during this period  was the abolition of the Queensland Legislative Council, arising from their refusal to approve legislation assented by the lower house (some sources suggest up to 200 Bills and Regulations returned).

By 1929, however, the Labor governments appear to have run out of steam and AE Moore became Premier when the Country and Progressive National Party (relatively short lived coalition) won the election. Timing is everything Continue reading

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