Ipswich City Council
Suburb and Place Names
The following information outlining the historic communities of Ipswich is an extract from Volume 1 of the 1992 Ipswich Heritage Study.
Phases of Historical Development
The history of the Ipswich area since European settlement in 1827 is quite complex and varied. Situated strategically between urban Brisbane and a rural hinterland, Ipswich rapidly established its hegemony on the basis of wool, coal, transport and industry. The speed with which the town developed and diversified, compared with its string of nearby hamlets, was very rapid. Nevertheless some years such as the 1880s and early 1900s were prosperous and expansive, while others, particularly the 1890s and 1930s, were characterized by stagnation and depression.
To understand the area know today as the city of Ipswich, it is useful to distinguish various phases of historical development:
Though this scheme is necessarily simplified, there is a close relationship between these phases of history and the area's heritage on the ground. This applies particularly to the timing, function and form of buildings, structures and other remains.
Historic Communities Overview
The convict period, when very few free settlers were admitted, began in 1827 and lasted for fifteen years. The place was initially little more than a convict camp for supplying lime and sheep for Brisbane needs. In particular its foundation resulted from the presence of minable limestone close to the Bremer river, down which quicklime could be readily transported.
In 1842 Ipswich was opened up for free settlement, as was Brisbane. The first settlers mostly established themselves in Ipswich and West Ipswich. Being at the intersection of routes to the Darling Downs and upper Brisbane Valley gave Ipswich its strategic significance. Though townspeople and squatters alike hoped that it would become the capital port on the river, Brisbane leapt ahead after separation from New South Wales in 1859.
While the colony of Queensland was struggling for independence, so too was the fledgling settlement of Ipswich, which gained municipal status in 1860. But for the shortage of cotton during the American Civil War, the town might have been grievously retarded, due to droughts, floods and then high unemployment and depression in the later 1860s.
Only remnants of this pre-Separation era remain in its built heritage, mostly in the commercial centre and Denmark Hill, with some representation in the immediate suburbs to the north, east and west.
Because of the demand for local produce and manufactures, Ipswich was commercially buoyant by the end of the 1870s and enjoyed prosperity during the boom of the 1880s. As coal was required for the increasing number of steam engines employed in boats, trains, mills and works, there was a remarkable growth of mining to the north and east of the town from the mid 1870s onwards. Miners swelled the population of existing hamlets, and Blackstone and New Chum were virtually created by mine owners. Nevertheless early mining operations around Ipswich were confined, due to the government policy from 1848 onwards of subdividing coal-bearing crown land into small ‘coal allotments', as at Woodend and Tivoli.
These economic developments of the 1870s to 1880s are reflected in much of the public, commercial and domestic architecture, not only in the centre and the coal communities, but also in the surrounding localities. While the grander houses appeared on the ridges of Denmark Hill and Eastern Heights, and the lesser folk clustered more in North, East and West Ipswich, the middling sort filled in the gaps throughout these areas and Woodend. Examples are also found in the houses, shops and institutions of outlying hamlets, including Booval and Goodna.
By this time, however, America had regained its economic impetus, so that local farmers turned increasingly to dairying. Floods, droughts and severe economic depression also affected the Ipswich area by 1893. Nevertheless Ipswich was partially insulated by its relatively diversified economy. By 1901, when the Australian colonies became a federation of states, the district headed into another period of prosperity including industrial, railways and tramways were laid to tap the coalfields, engineering works opened and meat preservation plants developed.
As a result the federation period is well represented in the remaining structures. These are somewhat scattered throughout the centre and immediate suburbs, but more apparent in expanding hamlets, particularly Goodna and Redbank.
The interwar years were varied in fortune for Ipswich. Following the disruption of the First World War in 1914-1918, the region, like the nation at large, was riding on a wave of euphoria. This was reflected in buildings of the 1920s, including many multi-gabled houses which were located in the less elevated areas of inner and intermediate suburbs including Newtown and Silkstone.
Then one of the worst droughts ever hit the area in 1930, accompanied by the Great Depression, and followed by the Second World War in 1939-1945. Nevertheless industry remained significant and the area gained a military airport at Amberley as well as air raid shelters and other installations.
During the postwar period of immigration and reconstruction, Ipswich got back onto its feet. Progress continued with the development of new collieries and expansion in meat and butter processing, the production of timber products and the introduction of chemical and tobacco manufacture in general, accompanied by a marked growth of industry at Redbank. In 1949 the Moreton field was still the largest producer of coal in Queensland, with 67 small mines yielding 47 percent of the State's output.
The city centre developed as the suburbs greatly expanded. Business and building increased to keep pace with the swelling population, which was mostly housed in fibro and then brick and tile rather than the traditional timber and tin. Many old estates were subdivided, including Eastern Heights, while the outlying towns became densely settled suburbs and Collingwood Park was added to the list. However, recession hit in the early 1970s and development slowed to a standstill, followed by patchy recovery until the recession of the early 1990s.
When the Ipswich Heritage Study was undertaken in 1991 there were thirty-three suburbs in Ipswich. These comprised various historic settlements as well as the immediate suburbs of North, East and West Ipswich and localities such as Denmark Hill. Each experienced similar economic and social phases of development, starting with the initial survey and occupation. Each gained similar facilities and buildings of the prevailing form, fabric and style. Technological changes occurred at about the same time, so that once Ipswich obtained, for example, gas street lighting so did other communities. Being situated along either the Bremer River or the Brisbane, most were affected by floods and droughts.
Despite this basic similarity, each settlement had its own identity which was rooted in the past. The hamlets of Goodna, Booval, Newtown, Amberley and Leichhardt had pastoral, agricultural or estate origins, which drew labour and services of various kinds. Communities in the Dinmore, Bundamba, New Chum, Blackstone and Tivoli areas developed around local coal mines. North Ipswich and Dinmore became more industrial in character. Others such as Woodend were mixed in origin, or lapsed completely, including the Petries' industrial estate at Redbank and Joseph Fleming's industrial complex on the Bremer. Redbank in particular had a more complex and multiple origin in pastoralism, agriculture, mining and industry. In addition to these developmental differences, the municipal history of Ipswich communities has been quite diverse. Ipswich itself became a city in 1904, but portions of the Shires of Brassall, Bundamba and Purga were not incorporated into Greater Ipswich until 1917, nor the area from Bundamba to Woogaroo until 1949, followed by Goodna and Gailes as recently as 1959. Consequently the newer suburbs of Ipswich are strung out along the river and the mainroads from Brisbane in the east to the former Moreton Shire area in the West.
Amberley and Willowbank
The area around Amberley originated as farming property, especially dairying. Called Three Mile Creek, it was better known locally as 'The Sandridge', being notorious for bogging horsedrawn vehicles and bullock teams in the sand.
One of the early settlers was Darby McGrath, who opened the first school in 1861 on Willowbank, his sheep and cattle station. In the following year, a small building was erected on the same site for 41 children attending the Warrill Creek School, the easterly area having taken this name from the creek.
During the later 1800s Warrill Creek produced cotton, sheep and cattle for the Brisbane market. A Congregational chapel was also opened in 1878. In 1888 the school was shifted to the Sandridge where it remained for many years. A new school was erected to the west in 1981, following expansion by the RAAF Base.
Amberley, as the area was officially renamed in 1903, derived from the farm of James and Martha Collett, who arrived at Ipswich in the 1850s. Their dairying selection was about two miles from the War Memorial towards Rosewood on the left side of Old Toowoomba Road. Like many pioneers they named the property after their home town, in this case in West Sussex.
The site of the Amberley RAAF Base was called Jebropilly by the Aborigines, meaning 'swamp of the flying squirrel'. Though the Defence Department bought 900 acres (320 hectares) in December 1938, just before the beginning of the Second World War, the base did not commence operations until June 1940 with the arrival of Station Headquarters and no 24 Squadron. As the war progressed the area was increased to 1300 acres (520 hectares) and the facilities were expanded to make Amberley a major base for aircraft assembly, repair and salvage. New huts, hangars and barracks were built to house over 2000 airmen of the RAAF strikeforce. Willowbank nearby was used as an officers' clubhouse by the US Airforce.
Basin Pocket, bounded on three sides by the Bremer River, is adjacent to the Basin, an enlarged natural widening used by river steamers to turn before or after berthing at Ipswich. The explorer Allan Cunningham noted the Basin in 1828, and the Rev. Dr John Dunmore Lang suggested that Basin Pocket or Booval might have been a better site for the main settlement.
A ferry service between Basin Pocket and North Ipswich was established by William Isaac Lawrence sometime after his family settled there in the 1860s.
South of Bundamba, the settlement of Blackstone owed its origin to the so called Bundamba Mine on the Aberdare coal seam which Lewis Thomas and John Malbon Thompson operated from 1866 to about 1870.
After switching to mining at Dinmore in 1870, Thomas returned to open his first Aberdare Mine in 1876 and prospered thereafter. In 1881 the government granted him permission to build a private railway which developed by 1903 into a loop line connecting the mines from Bundamba to Redbank: Blackheath, Box Flat, Fairbank, Aberdare, Bogside No 2, Mafeking, Denham, Swanbank, Bonnie Dundee, Rhondda, Whitwood and New Chum.
The settlement comprised little more than a few bark humpies and a Congregational Church (est. 1881) until Thomas brought out family members and a contingent of Welsh miners in 1882, for whom he provided cottages, followed by other compatriots. The newcomers held Welsh services in a disused church at Newtown until Thomas provided a cottage, and subsequently the land for a United Welsh Church which opened at Blackstone in 1886. The Cambrian Choir was formed in the same year, the first eisteddfod being held in the newly built church in 1887. The community held tightly to its Welsh origins, teaching its children the traditions and language of their birthplace; so much so that in ‘the Welsh Gazette of 27 March 1913' Blackstone was described as a Welsh suburb of Ipswich.
Despite its Welsh constituency, the place was evidently named after Blackstone in Ireland by Mrs James Brown Orr, who was in charge of the local post office; though the placename must also have referred to the coal seam. The area was also known for its cockatoos and rushes for candlemaking.
Mining activity and community life increased apace during the succeeding years. In 1885 the first telephone in Blackstone established a link between the Aberdare Colliery and Bundamba Railway Station. Two years later the school was founded with 80 enrolled students, followed by the Blackstone Rovers Soccer Club in 1890 and a two-storeyed School of Arts in the following year. A setback occurred in 1893, when the great flood inundated the two churches and swept away many belongings. Despite this disaster and the ensuing depression, the Aberdare Cooperative Colliery Ltd came into existence in 1894 and leased the mine from Thomas until its insolvency in 1907.
Meanwhile Lewis Thomas, the patron of Blackstone, completed his ‘castle', called Brynhyfryd (meaning ‘Pleasant View'), in 1890. This three-storeyed residence with a central tower and various outbuildings was built in rendered brick high on the Blackstone hill. Thomas was the Bundamba member of the Legislative Assembly from 1893 to 1899 and of the Legislative Council from 1902 until his death in 1913. During the early years his political opponent was Thomas Glassey, the miners' man.
During the First World War, functions were held at Brynhyfryd to raise support for the troops and a Comforts Club was formed in Blackstone to aid the cause. The illegal game of two-up was held regularly at the Borehole near the creek every Sunday for several years, until the area was cleared for farming, and then further around at the old Cardiff pit site.
Lewis Thomas died in 1913, leaving the estate to his wife Anne and his only child Mary Cribb. When the depression of the 1930s reached its peak, the upkeep proved too costly, and the coal beneath the mansion was considered a greater prize. Consequently the house was stripped of its contents and submitted for public auction. In 1936 the mansion was sold to Rylance Collieries, the cedar and glass front doors being presented to the Welsh United Church, the only one in Queensland. When demolition loomed in the following year, various items were purchased at auction for buildings in the Ipswich area, including the residences of John Donald and George Mathieson and St Josephs Church. All that remained of the mansion was the billiard room and the front steps, and they too were demolished in 1960. The hillside was further cleared in 1973 for housing development which never went ahead.
In the meantime, the Blackstone community suffered from the effects of living on top of a coal mine. Subsidence, which was always a problem in the area, damaged the Old School of Arts and parts of the roadway as well as Thomas Street. Underground fires were devouring the remaining coal reserves under Brynhyfryd and the honeycombed ground began to subside.
Booval and Silkstone
The settlement of Booval derived from a private estate and its strategic location on the road and railway between Ipswich and Brisbane.
Booval House was built in the late 1850s for Ipswich bank manager George Faircloth. He might have taken the name from the French 'Beau Val' (beautiful valley) or from England, though Aboriginal derivations have been suggested, including a place of initiation or the frilled lizard.
The first Governor of Queensland, Sir George Bowen, and his wife paused at Booval House en route to Ipswich in 1859 and it became one of the Cobb & Co coach stops. The adjacent Raceview cotton fields were worked by the Ipswich Cotton Company.
In 1876 the railway station named Booval was opened on the Brisbane-Ipswich line. By 1882, however, the only buildings along Brisbane Road were H. Pocock's residence at the Bundamba Creek bridge, Tamar Cottage on the corner of Booval Street and Brisbane Road, a two-storeyed Methodist Church between Marion and Fox Streets, and a shingle-roofed dwelling between Fox and Wilson Streets. From there to the Ulster Hotel in Ipswich there were not further buildings.
Nevertheless there were three public wells in Booval: one at the southwest corner of Cameron Park; another in Cole Street on the southern side of the current Woolworths; and in Station Road near Clifton Street. Another was sunk by the Booval Brewing Company which opened in Railway Street in 1898.
Community facilities included a post office, which opened at the Railway Station in 1884 and had various locations thereafter. In the adjacent part of Silkstone, a postal receiving office of that name opened in 1889. The Silkstone Primitive Methodist Church held its first service in a newly constructed church in the following year, the congregation having split form the Bundamba Primitive Methodist Church. The geological placename evidently derived from a village of Silkstone near Penistone in Yorkshire.
By 1915 the Booval area leading to Blackstone was largely occupied by miners, many of whom were Welsh immigrants. At that time Blackstone Road from Macquarie Street to Margaret Street was fairly well settled with Hastings' bakery, R.H. Lewis' store, Davey Downs butchery and the post office to serve the community. Station Road from the railway station beyond Blackstone Road had quite a few homes, but the Booval stretch remained largely vacant. Along Station Road were two picture theatres, the Alpha run by Jack Neville and the National operated by the Miners Union. Two of the early houses in the area were Cooneys on Cooney Hill and Jenkins House on the old Brisbane Quarry area. In North Booval, which wassparsely settled, was the original wooden butter factory. The largest of the suburban shops was the Co-operative Store on the corner of Station and Brisbane Roads, which did well until the 1930s depression. There were four churches in the area: the Methodist Church on the corner of Station and Brisbane Roads; the Church of England in Cothill Road (later moved to Stafford Street); the newly constructed Sacred Heart church; and the Church of England near thenorthwest corner of Brisbane and Station Roads.
Several community buildings were completed after the start of the First World War. These included theBooval Police Station with its corrugated fibro roof, while the Sacred Heart church received a slate roof, which was subsequently replaced. The Silkstone-Booval State School, with a tile roof and high brick piers, opened in 1915. The National Hall in Station Road was built for Councillor Easton, squire of Buttonsville, in 1914. A concert and dance was held for the opening, with proceeds going towards war relief in Belgium. After purchasethree years later by the Queensland Colliery Employees Union, it continued to operate as a dance hall and picture theatre. In the 1930s the Union extended the hall and built offices at the rear. The building, which was sold to the Ipswich-Blackstone Cambrian Choir in 1983, is now known as the Cambrian Centre, in this Welsh-influenced area.
Brassall, which was originally known as Hungry Flats, was a parish named by surveyor James Warner on his plan of 1851. One of its earliest residents in the 1840s was George Harris before he moved to Woodend.
In 1887 a rifle range was established and a red flag hoisted on the Glamorgan Vale Road to warn people that anyone passing between the flag and North Ipswich was in the line of fire. The state school was erected in 1893.
Brassall formed a separate shire from 1860 until 1917, when it became a suburb of Ipswich.
Bundamba was another of the mining and industrial settlements. Bundanba, as it was originally called, is believed to have derived from the Aboriginal words 'bundan' and 'ba', meaning a stone axe and place of. This referred to Bundamba Creek which was a source of good stone for hand axes. The name was officially changed to Bundamba in 1932.
The first major development was the Bremer Mill on the riverbank - an enterprising industrial complex comprising a flourmill, boiling down works, brickworks, timbermill, wharf and workers' dwellings, which was commenced by Joseph Fleming in 1852. The now vacant site awaits archaeological investigation.
Some coalmining was conducted in the early 1880s by the local publican Denis Bergin, followed by the Lindsay brothers, who opened the Braeside mine in 1883. Several brickworks were also established in the vicinity.
Community facilities included the Bundamba Methodist Church, which was established in 1865. The present building is the third church on that site. The state school was opened in 1873. The most prominent feature of the area, the Bundamba Racecourse, was founded by the Ipswich Amateur Turf Club in 1890, following objection to its previous site by the Bundamba School in 1885.
Calvert, originally called Alfred, was on the early road to Toowoomba. An inn was opened here in 1843 by Owens, later sold to McKeon. The village of Alfred was surveyed in 1854 and in the same year, became a stopping place on the coach route.
Calvert was not one of the original stations on the railway and in 1865, residents petitioned for a station. This opened in 1866 and was called Western Creek, renamed Calvert in 1884. Alfred School opened in 1872.
During World War II, an army base building and ammunition store was established on the southern side of Franklin Vale Creek. Many African American soldiers were stationed there and became popular members of the Lanefield Baptist Church.
Churchill has taken the name which was given to the whole county in 1845 and used for the local post office which opened in 1892. In 1873 the first Ipswich Show was held at the saleyards of the East and West Moreton pastoral and Agricultural Society. The show moved to the Sandy Gallop training track in 1877, and the yards were sold four years later.
The Isambert Brothers established a soap and candleworks in 1866, which were owned by William Hancock from 1883 until his death in 1892, and sold to Harry Tivoli Hooper in 1901. The Churchill State School opened in 1923.
Dinmore and Ebbw Vale
Some Ipswich communities owe their origin to coalmining. These settlements towards the east of Ipswich include: Dinmore, as the railway station was named in 1884, which evidently took its name from Dinmore Hill in Herefordshire, England, though possibly related to the Welsh word Dinmawr meaning a great hill; New Chum, which was named after the mine developed by James Gulland from 1876; and Ebbw Vale, after a Glamorganshire town in Wales, which was called St Helens when the railway station opened in 1909 but was changed in the following year. Formerly part of Moreton Shire, these became suburbs of Ipswich in 1949.
The Red Hill mine was opened by Sydney merchant, Robert Towns and Brisbane entrepreneur John Campbell in 1866, but was abandoned by the mid 1870s. In 1881 it was resumed by James Gulland of the Old Tivoli Mine, who adopted the alternate name of New Chum for the whole area.
Adjacent mines which opened in subsequent years included: the first Aberdare Mine of Blackstone's Lewis Thomas at Dinmore in 1870; John Jones' Ebbw Vale Colliery in 1877, on the site of what was to be the Dinmore Pottery; the Whitwood Colliery of the Stafford brothers from Tivoli, also at Ebbw Vale in 1887; Edward Owen's Dinmore Colliery in 1894, which is now the site of Ebbw Vale Drain Pipes; and the Rhondda Colliery south of New Chum in 1902.
James Gulland was responsible for the private railway which connected the mining area with the main Brisbane to Ipswich line in the 1880s. He also built twenty-eight four-roomed cottages for his employees at New Chum but occupied Maryville, Joshua Bell's old home in Ipswich. In 1904 the New Chum mine passed into the hands of Gulland's niece, and was developed by John Hetherington in partnership with her husband P.D. Rylance (subsequently Rylance Collieries).
Though mining was significant in the early development of the Dinmore area, brickworks and potteries became important. Hudson & Sons, otherwise known as Reliance Potteries, were established in 1887 on 32 acres of freehold land in Riverview Road, and produced pipes and fittings. Dinmore Potteries began operations in the 1880s by chance. The original intention was to open a mine shaft on the site, but the clay was of such fine quality that pottery was a more profitable proposition. Bricks were the only product until the turn of the century, when Gilson & Rumble began making crockery. Rylance Collieries opened a brickworks in 1931 and began producing fire bricks for furnaces, engine blocks for the railways and some housebricks. In 1985 the company was sold to Claypave. The Ebbw Vale Brick Company was also an important concern.
One of the earliest buildings in the Dinmore area was the Baptist Church, which was built during the late 1870s to early 1880s. The Dinmore State School was opened in 1891. The Methodist Church, which opened in 1901, was later sold to the Redbank Plains Uniting Church and the congregation joined the Booval Uniting Church. Now that the mines and potteries have closed, only the relics of once thriving industries remain on the ground.
Gailes was a railway station name given in 1925 after the Western Gailes Golf Course in Scotland and said to mean overgrown with bog-myrrh. It replaced the earlier railway station name of Dingo Hill (1919) for the area which was formerly known as Pullen Pullen Flats. The name was suggested by the wife of Dr. H. Byram Ellerton, superintendent of the Goodna Hospital and a founding member of the Goodna Golf Club at Dingo Hill in 1924, which changed its name to Gailes Golf Course in 1935.
Gailes became a suburb of Ipswich in 1959.
Towards the eastern boundary of the City, the Goodna area owes its origin primarily to pastoralism and agriculture. As early as 1841 there was a sheep run called Woogaroo Station, which was owned by the Grenier family of South Brisbane. This name, which referred to a waterhole in the creek was superseded from 1865 onwards by Goodna, an Aboriginal term meaning 'dung'.
By the early 1840s Dr Stephen Simpson, the lands commissioner and magistrate for the Moreton Bay district, was living in a slab hut and farming on the riverbank near the mouth of Woogaroo Creek. As the main road intersected with the track from Coopers Plains and the river, this was then a strategic location for Simpson. In 1851-1852 he purchased 2000 acres of land, including 640 acres on Wolston Creek. The homestead which he built on that property was called Wolston House, which is now a heritage listed building held by the National Trust of Queensland.
Other well known pioneers settled or purchased land in the Goodna area: James Holmes arrived in 1851 and established himself as a grazier; Charles Pitt settled in 1855 and grew cotton and maize; Harriet Holmes bought 33 acres upstream from Wolston House in 1860; and Joshua Jeays, later Mayor of Brisbane, bought 40 acres in the next year.
Further settlement took place after Woogaroo was proclaimed a village in 1856. In the following year Joseph Broad built a store on the site, which is now occupied by the Hotel Cecil, and the cemetery opened in 1859. By 1863 there was a small run to Holmes Inn, where Harriet Holmes was postmistress. The 'Woogaroo Lunatic Asylum' was under way nearby, and the Congregational Church which was opened in 1863. There was one acting police sergeant and a constable by 1868. W. Law established himself as a blacksmith in 1870, the year in which the State School opened.
Daniel Jones built the first sawmill in 1884, which was located below the Catholic Church/School grounds in the paddock that reached from Mill Street to Alice Street (known by locals as 'the mill paddock'). In the smaller paddock immediately behind the Presbyterian Church and Manse stood the wooden 'Honey Shed' used by Daniel's brother Harry in conjunction with his apiary at Redbank Plains. By the Second World War this use had been discontinued and the site was used by a group of CWA ladies who made camouflage nets for the war effort. The site was also used at one time by the Goodna Scout Group.
By 1888 the population of Goodna was 500, and there were three friendly societies, the Oddfellows, Loyal Rose of Denmark and Good Templars. The foundation stone of St Francis Xavier Catholic Church (formerly St Patrick's) had been laid in 1880 by Bishop James Quinn and opened in the following year. The Catholic school was opened in 1910 and the Sisters of Mercy Convent in 1911. A major employer was the Wolston Park complex, since shift workers were easily able to walk to the complex across a bridge which existed at the end of Layard Street.
Like other towns east of Ipswich, Goodna was affected by coalmining. From 1865 to 1877 Robert Towns' Goodna mine was in operation, followed by minor efforts thereafter.
Being near the Brisbane River, Goodna was also affected by flooding, especially in 1893 when residents took refuge at the school. Building casualties included: the chemical factory on the river flats, which was destroyed; the Primitive Methodist Church, which was carried downstream but rebuilt in Smith Road (demolished 1984); and the railway station, which was picked up and completely turned around, but survived, only to be burnt down later. Despite these ravages of time and recent shopping developments, Goodna retains significant elements of its heritage.
Road Names in Goodna:
Granchester and Mt Mort
The Mt Mort district was originally part of the huge Laidley Plains leasehold which was taken up as a sheep run in 1843. The run extended across the Franklin Valley, named after Sir John Franklin, Lt-Governor of Van Diemen's Land 1837-1843. In 1849, the lease passed to Sydney businessman Thomas Mort. His brother Henry took over management then acquired the Franklyn Vale section in the early 1850s.
Grandchester was developed as a township when the first railway was constructed in 1865. The railway was planned to start at Ipswich and reach the Darling Downs, but contracts were let in several sections, the first being from Ipswich to Grandchester which was relatively easy construction; after this point, the line had to cross the range to Laidley and a tunnel (The Victoria Tunnel) had to be constructed.
Grandchester became a railway construction camp known as Bigge's Camp. The first section of line was officially opened in July 1865 and the name was Latinised to become Grandchester (Bigge became Grand and camp became chester) at the suggestion of Governor Bowen. The station building still remains and is now the oldest in Queensland.
Andrea Lindo carried out a survey for a town in August 1865. Half acre blocks were being advertised for sale in July 1866.
As a railway township, Grandchester became a small centre for the surrounding pastoral country. Charles Mort of Franklyn Vale opened a creamery and butter factory at Grandchester in 1893.
The first name for Ipswich was 'The Limestone Hills' or 'The Limestone Station', the name used in convict days when lime was quarried here. This name was shortened to simply 'Limestone' and was the name used by the first free settlers in 1842. It appeared on the first maps of the town and was used in the newspaper reports in the 'Moreton Bay Courier'.
The name Ipswich was given by Sir George Gipps, Governor of New South Wales. Gipps visited the site of the new town just before the free settlers arrived, while surveyors were still working to draw up a plan for the town.
Governor Gipps interfered with the surveyor's work. He said the streets had to be narrow and he told the surveyor that Limestone did not need a town square. He also decided to change the name. If you look at the first plan drawn by the surveyor Henry Wade in 1842, it bears the words 'Proposed Plan of the Town of Limestone, by Henry Wade Surveyor'.
Above that in smaller letters added later is 'To be called IPSWICH'.
Why did Governor Gipps choose the name Ipswich? One possibility is that he remembered what Harry Rous had said when he visited Moreton Bay about 10 years earlier. Harry Rous was captain of the ship 'Rainbow' and he was also the second oldest son of Viscount Dunwich, Earl of Stradbroke - this is where the names Dunwich and Stradbroke Island came from.
Harry Rous must also have visited the country near Limestone because he is supposed to have said that it reminded him of the town of Ipswich which was near his home at Stradbroke in England.
Maybe Governor Gipps remembered this and picked Ipswich when he wanted a new name instead of a convict name. Governor Gipps might also have liked jokes with words. Ipswich in England is a very old town and it used to be spelled 'Gippeswic' which means Gippi's Wic or Gippi's Village.
So Ipswich was Gippi's Village. In other words, Governor Gipps might have named the town after himself. We don't really know.
Karalee, Chuwar and Barellan Point
This area between the Brisbane and Bremer Rivers had a similar pattern of development to the other riverside localities and had similar patterns of farming.
Karalee had an additional secondary industry in the 1860s, a boiling-down works located between Junction Road and the Bremer River. Operated by Richard Smith, this was known as Town Marie and was a self-contained industrial village with a boiling-down works, a sawmill, owner's house and houses for workmen. Its location was near the present-day Karalee shopping centre.
A township was surveyed at Chuwar at the corner of Junction and Mt Crosby Roads in 1886 but it never developed.
Coal mines were operated in this general area. Most of these were in the suburb of Tivoli but some on the north-eastern side would now be considered within the suburbs of Chuwar/Karalee. These included Rossend on Portion 1, Parish of Chuwar which opened in the 1870s. It was later sold and renamed Haighmoor. The coal from these mines was suitable for coking and several including Haighmoor built and operated coke ovens. Other mines in this area included Boxwood on Portion 124 which opened from 1884 to 1899.
The Tivoli Line was built from Ipswich Railway Workshops in 1898 to service coal mines in this area and a tramway was built in 1912 to extend the line to supply coal to the Mt Crosby Pumping Station. The path of this line can still be discerned through much of Tivoli, Chuwar, Kholo and Mt Crosby.
Kholo and Mt Crosby
Lt John Oxley, with Allan Cunningham and Lt Butler, explored this area in September 1824. They travelled by boat as far as a point opposite the clliffs below Allawah Road, after which the boats proceeded no further. They then made several excursions on foot from their campsite and named the nearby mountain "Belle Vue Mount". The name was later changed to Mt Crosby, probably because some of the early settlers came from Crosby-on-Eden on the England-Scotland border.
In 1825, Lockyer recorded seeing coal on the riverbank upstream of the present Kholo Bridge. This was the first observation of coal in Queensland.
In the 1840s, the region was taken up as large sheep stations. In the Lake Manchester area, Cabbage Tree run was leased by John Smith in 1862 and Waverley Run by James Stanley in 1863. These runs also operated as sheep stations but as the area was not really suitable for sheep, cattle were gradually substituted.
Timber getting was another early industry, with the hoop pine logs being dried at the Melon Hut, 800m below the present-day Mt Crosby Weir. The logs were then formed into rafts; most were floated down to the junction and then back up the Bremer to Hancocks Mill in Ipswich.
Other early industries included crop farming, including sugar and cotton. Dairying later became important. However the land was relatively poor and while farms along the river were viable, other settlers cut timber such as railway sleepers for their properties to supplement their income.
Lanefield was named after the Lane family whose farm was near the railway.
The area became important for dairying with the Lanefield Cooperative Dairy being established in 1890. It closed in 1909 after most farms were able to buy their own separator.
Mining began in Lanefield in 1918 and continued until about 1870, evidence of the old workings and surface structures can be seen in several places throughout the area.
Ashwell State School was established in 1887 and was named after the home town of Victor Loveday, who with Henry Stevens, donated land for the school. A Baptist Church opened in 1873 and a larger building replaced it in 1887, able to seat 200 people. A manse was built near the church. The work of the church was moved to Rosewood in 1959 and the church was sold for demolition.
The Railway Station, which included a post office receiving office, closed in 1964.
West across the Bremer, the suburb of Leichhardt was originally known as One Mile. Being a mile from the main settlement to the crossing place on the Warwick and Toowoomba Road, One Mile was a popular camping place for teamsters to rest their bullocks.
Sailing Captain Neale and his family took up residence at One Mile and erected a large timber building as a hotel; but this was later reinstated in Bell Street as the Red Cow.
By 1871 the land on the western side of the bridge had been subdivided and put under cultivation. Mr Orth grew maize, cotton, oats and potatoes, and supplied Ipswich with vegetables. Malmsbury farm was owned by C.F. Chubb, while Casper Zinn and Meyer & Isambert ran vineyards.
Further subdivision and settlement took place in the area, which was known as Toongarra early last century. However, the riverside reserve which was designated One Mile Park in 1925 was officially termed Leichhardt Park from 1930 onwards, as the famed explorer reputedly camped there. Following representations by local residents, the suburb of Leichhardt was named by the Ipswich City Council in 1953.
The old bridge which linked central Ipswich and One Mile was replaced in 1936. The Honour Stone was unveiled in 1917 by Mrs P.W. Cameron, wife of the mayor of Ipswich. It was made by F. Williams & Co and was considered unusual because of its rising sun motif.
Marburg, Haigslea and Tallegalla
Before white settlement, the Marburg district was an area of dense scrubland, forming part of the huge Rosewood Scrub. It was described by early explorers Oxley and Cunningham in September 1824 when they viewed it from the top of Mt Crosby.
Cunningham later experienced the scrub's dense tangles when he set out from Ipswich in 1829 and reached the scrub near Fairney View. He was unable to penetrate it and turned back through the more open forest near present-day Walloon, round Mt Marrow to Rosewood.
Ludwig Leichhardt also described the scrub and was probably the first to use the name Rosewood.
Early settlers in the Rosewood Scrub
In the 1840s, the Malabar area was known as Sally Owens Plain after a shepherdess who lived there with her husband Sam, a ticket of leave man. They built a hut near the site of Marburg Showgrounds. In 1847, they opened a hotel at Old Man's Waterhole (Calvert).
In 1865, Charles Smith erected a sawmill on Portion 176 at Sandy Creek, Walloon (a few kilometres from the present-day Woodlands) just outside the Rosewood Scrub. The Smiths operated this mill successfully until 1876 and it was referred to as "The Old Walloon Mill".
The first railway in 1865 ran south-east of the edge of the Scrub, the closest station being Walloon. The line passed through Rosewood where the first settler was the man who opened the railway gates, but the township did not develop until 1907. A non-vested school opened at Walloon in 1865 under the name Guilfoyle's Creek with an initial enrolment of 41 children.
In 1868, the Crown Lands Alienation Act was passed by the Queensland Parliament to allow people to take up a homestead selection at a cheap price. Charles Smith was one of the first to select land in the Rosewood Scrub, buying a homestead block for 2/6 per acre and the remainder for 13/4 per acre. The land totalled 1000 acres. In 1869, Smith took up more land at Sally Owens Plains and on September 7, 1870, he took up portion 393, Parish of Walloon - another 568 acres on which the mansion "Woodlands" was later built. Smith had built a timber house on the Woodlands block by 1872.
Many other settlers took advantage of the opportunity to obtain land and began to clear the Scrub. The settlers were predominantly German and the early crops were corn and a few small vegetable crops such as potatoes, later diversifying into dairying and piggeries. The German origin of much of the population is reflected in the names chosen for Townships - Marburg, Minden, Kirchheim (later Haigslea) and Walloon.
By 1875, the population of the Rosewood Scrub district had grown and the acting General Inspector for Education Mr Ewart visited the area to assess the need for schools. He was met at Walloon Railway Station and then travelled around for several days, meeting various groups of settlers who lobbied for a school for their particular locality. A school opened the following year at Walloon Scrub (Haigslea) and shortly afterwards at Minden. Tallegalla and Marburg lobbied for the third school. John Dart of Tallegalla claimed that there were 100 children who would attend a school if it opened at Tallegalla. There were delays due to indecision, but both localities eventually gained a school in 1879.
Thomas Lorimer Smith turned to sugar growing at Woodlands in 1881 and shortly afterwards built a sugar mill and rum distillery. He used both white and South Sea Island labourers and encouraged district farmers to grow cane to supply the mill. Cane became a significant local crop for some years until the sugar mill closed in 1919.
Dairying in the district led to co-operative diaries being set up and the development of secondary industries such as butter and cheese making. A butter factory was set up at Marburg and Mr F W Lining set up a factory at Haigslea, establishing a large export business to England until he was put out of business by competition from co-operative butter factories.
The other major industry in the district was coal mining although it began later here than in other localities. Mountain Ash No 1 opened at Tallegalla in 1924 and Roughrigg opened near Perry's Nob in 1926. Production this area ceased in the 1960s.
The township of Marburg developed on the banks of the Black Snake Creek, said to have been named because numerous black snakes came out of the scrub as it was cleared.
This township was at first referred to as Frederich (also spelt Frederick) after a prominent early settler and postmaster. It was later named Marburg after a town in Prussia. During the period of anti-German feeling during World War I, the town was renamed Townshend but reverted in 1920.
By the 1880s, Marburg was a thriving township. Marburg Hotel opened in 1881 and a School of Arts was built in 1885, the town being lit by electricity for the opening courtesy of TL Smith who had installed electricity at this sawmill at Woodlands. The Queensland National Bank was established in 1887 and a Court House in 1891. The railway was extended to Marburg in late 1911 but traffic declined in the 1920s and 1930s and the line eventually closed in 1965.
John Oxley originally gave the name Mt Forbes to the prominent mountain but this name was later changed. Mt Walker was one of the two mountains used by surveyor Robert Dixon in his original measurement of a baseline for Queensland.
The area was used for farming and dairying and the Lamberts grew grapes here in the 1880s.
During World War II, a United States ammunition dump, an Alien Internment camp and a base camp for African American units were located in this area. These are no longer standing.
Several schools were opened in the district in the latter half of the 19th century but with declining numbers, most have now closed.
Newtown and Eastern Heights
The Newtown - Eastern Heights area largely comprised two estates, one which was owned by John Rankin and the other by William Vowles. Rankin subdivided and sold his Newtown Estate about 1865, comprising the allotments between Whitehill, Blackstone, Glebe and Grange Roads. Vowles lived in Newtown at Springvale and later Spring Gardens on the northeast corner of Frederick Street and Glebe Road. There was a spring at the northern end of Hanover Street in Spring Gardens, which supplied a stable. An old carbeen tree stood on the corner of Lusitania Street and Glebe Road, where Aborigines used to gather for an afternoon rest.
To serve the growing settlement, the Newtown State School opened in 1882. In 1915 the old school buildings were put up for sale. One section found its way to Redbank Plains State School while the other became the property of W. Pysden a boot repairer in East Street, Ipswich. Many buildings in the Ipswich area have a similar history of migration.
Between Newtown and Silkstone, the farming station of the convict era eventually came into the hands of the squatter and politician Joshua Peter Bell, who called it ‘The Grange'. Horse races were held in this area in 1850 after the construction of a track and grandstand, followed by regular races from the formation of the North Australian Jockey club in 1852. Hence Grange Road between Blackstone and Robertson Roads in Silkstone, which led to the course, and the later suburb of Raceview. The derivation of Cemetery Road, where the Whybird family settled in the 1900s, is more obvious; also Orchard and Orangefield Streets referring to the orchadist Jackes.
When ‘The Grange Racecourse' was officially designated a reserve in 1861, its trustees were John Panton, Thomas de Lacey Moffatt, Joshua Peter Bell, Francis Bigge and Arnold Weinholt. In that year a committee of Ipswich sportsmen organized the Queensland Championship Sweepstakes, a three-mile race with a prize of a thousand pounds. Governor Bowen and other racing enthusiasts arrived from Brisbane on the steamer ‘Ipswich' to see John Tait's Zoe win the race from only three other horses. In 1876 the club moved to a site close by the present Bundamba racecourse, just east of the creek.
During World War II the American War Cemetery was located at Raceview. In 1947 the remains were shipped back to the United States. Today, a flagpole and plaque identify Manson Park as the former site of the graveyard. The park is named after a local resident, Mrs Manson, who tended the graves during the war.
Though the Eastern Heights area was occupied by grand houses on large allotments by late last century, the area first appeared on an official map in 1930. Except for parkland and schools, the Newtown-Grange-Eastern heights area is primarily residential.
Peak Crossing, Purga and Yamanto
One of the early roads to the Darling Downs passed through this area. The road started in Ipswich, then went over the One Mile River crossing, past Rockton Road (now called Mt Flinders Road) where the Beehive Inn catered for travellers, then on through Peak Crossing, past Balbi's Inn near present-day Lake Moogerah and up Spicer's Peak Road.
In 1848, William Wilson took up Mt Flinders Run of 40,000 acres and grazed sheep and later cattle. He grew an experimental sample of cotton in 1847 which Rev John Dunmore Lang submitted to mills in England.
As new land laws cut up the huge early runs, the area became more closely settled. An early industry was timber getting with mills at Peak Crossing and Rockton. During the American Civil War in the 1860s, cotton-growing became important throughout the district. Yamahnto, the cotton-growing property of George Challinor, later gave its name to the locality. When cotton growing later declined, it was replaced in importance by dairying and crop farming.
The town of Peak Crossing developed around a hotel, store and cotton gin developed by William Watkins in 1869. The name refers to the crossing over Purga Creek, near the present-day State School; it was initially called Peak Mountain Crossing but the name was later simplified. One of the first Cobb and Co staging points south of Ipswich was at Peak Crossing.
Pine Mountain was the source of timber for many early buildings. By at least the 1850s, sawyers went to "The Mountain" to cut hoop pine which they floated down the river to Brisbane or hauled into Ipswich. One of these sawyers, Thomas Foreman, is known to have provided the pine for "Claremont", the first Ipswich Hospital and the first Bank of NSW in Ipswich. The greatest hazard in their work was the frequent floods in the Brisbane River which scattered their rafts of logs.
As the timber was cut out and land was made available for settlement, people (including some of the sawyers) commenced farming. They grew lucerne, maize and cotton and started orchards. Later, dairying became important.
A school and churches were established; of these, only the Catholic Church is still standing. Pine Mt Community Hall was built in 1916.
The Pine Mountain School was the location of a significant meeting called by its headmaster Joseph Mayfield in April 1886; at this meeting, the West Moreton Teachers Association was formed with Ipswich teacher John Scott as its president and Mayfield as secretary. The WMTA's first annual picnic was also held at Pine Mountain. This association was a model for similar district groups and led to the formation of the Queensland Teachers Union.
The Redbank area owes its origins to pastoralism and agriculture, but has had a more diverse history. Though said to have been named by the exploring Major Edmund Lockyer in 1825, his red bank was near Bryden. Redbank probably took its name later and more directly from the red soil in the riverbank. In 1846, during the convict era, a government station was established for breeding sheep and cattle.
In late 1842 the Petrie family, builders of early Brisbane, established a wharf and store, in conjunction with the public house of ship's captain John Chambers. Their ambition to develop a river port, which tapped the wool trade in competition with Ipswich, lapsed within a few weeks.
The first farmers settled on the river flats north of the current railway station in the late 1850s. The instigator was James Campbell, a Scotsman who founded the well-known Queensland hardware and building materials company. The settlement included a brickworks, sawmill, stores, cottages, a school and a nondenominational church. Some years later these were relocated south of the railway station due to sever flooding.
The plains were significant agriculturally, with rich black loamy soil producing heavy crops of maize, potatoes and fodder in the early years. Cotton became an important crop during the 1860s to 1870s, when farmers of the district took advantage of the boom in cotton prices caused initially by the American Civil War. Dairying was of greater importance by early this century, and several creameries were established in the area.
Because of Redbank's pastoral origins and riverside location, the first secondary industry was a boiling down works and fellmongery established in the late 1850s by Messres (John) Campbell & Towns. William Kellett later opened a meat preservation works which continued until 1931 when business was transferred to the Brisbane Abattoirs. uildings from the meatworks were sold to John Morris who refurbished them as the Morris Woollen Mills. Kellett also established the Redbank Freezing Works near the railway station in 1896. Originally built as a canning plant, this enterprise was expanded in 1901 to become the freezing works.
Messrs Campbell & Towns also opened a coal mine at Redbank in 1859. However, the first commercial coal mine in Queensland was begun on the riverbank by John Williams of South Brisbane about 1843. The second Redbank Mine, which was the scene of Queensland's first mining strike in 1861, was closed in 1870 due to flooding. This was followed be a series of mining ventures, including the fifth Redbank Colliery of 1910 to 1932.
As at Dinmore closer to Ipswich, pottery also became an important industry at Redbank. In 1883 James Campbell purchased a half-share in George Fischer's Pottery, whose main works were at Albion, north of Brisbane. By 1885 Campbell had bought out Fischer entirely, and changed the name to Albion Brick and Pottery Works. The brickworks continued until 1903 when the machinery was transferred to Albion. In 1933 the Milner family moved to Redbank and bought the site of the pottery in Mine Street. There they built their own double-chamber kiln which still stands by the original Campbell clay hole.
As a result of the relocation and subsequent development of Redbank, most of the community facilities were provided rather late. Though the Redbank non-vested school was opened in 1865, the state school was not built until about 1881. Around 1911 a small building, which was used as the first School of Arts, was erected in Fox Street on School Hill. This was sold to the Presbyterian Church in 1914 and a new School of Arts was opened on Brisbane Road. A new Presbyterian Church was built in 1927, preceded by the Methodist Church in 1904. St Lukes Church of England was erected in 1910 but moved to Law Street in 1970.
Postwar industrial and commercial development has put a modern imprint on the Redbank landscape, including the recycling of buildings from Brisbane's Expo 88. Nevertheless the institutions of Redbank, including the railway station and hotel, constitute a fine corpus of Federation to early Interwar architecture.
The first white settlement in this area was a convict outstation at Redbank; in 1832, this was in charge of a corporal and a private. The settlement operated as a sheep station, with convict shepherds caring for government flocks across the nearby plains. A road ran from Limestone (Ipswich) through Redbank and Cowper's Plains to Brisbane and the river was also used for transport.
After free settlement was allowed in 1842, Redbank developed as an industrial centre using the river for transport. Redbank Plains continued as a farming and grazing area.
An early settler was James Josey who had arrived as a convict but became a respected sawmiller and landowner. Other early families included, Rice, Verral, Griffiths, Gardiner, Yarrow and Jones.
Sawmilling was an important early industry. In the 1860s, cotton was the chief crop, taking advantage of the world-wide shortage caused by the American Civil War. Other crops included sugar cane and maize. As cotton declined, dairying and farm crops such as lucerne and maize became more important.
Coal was discovered in the 1850s and numerous mines developed between Redbank Plains and Blackstone.
The first school opened in 1868, a non-vested school run by the Catholic Church. A state school took its place in 1874.
Donald Coutts obtained a licence to depasture stock in this area in 1844. By 1846, it was officially known as the Rosewood Run with a carrying capacity of one sheep per acre.
Rosewood was a stopping place on the first railway line which opened in 1865. A gatehouse was built for a gatekeeper and later a stationmaster was appointed and a station built. Although the town progressed slowly at first, a school, churches and hotels were built. The first agricultural show was held in 1877.
A major sale of town blocks took place in 1907. In January 1914, a huge fire destroyed nine buildings in the main street, causing a glow that could be seen from Ipswich. The fire started in Frazers Boot Shop and also destroyed H. Weidt's Rosewood Hotel, the Royal Bank, A Fites Confectioner and Greengrocer, GB Tomlin chemist, Pend and Hall Auctioneers, Mrs Hohnke fruiterer and two empty shops of JW Evans. Most of the businesses were rebuilt within about 18 months, producing a precinct of buildings of much the same age.
In spite of this setback, the town continued to progress as a sawmilling centre and a receiving centre for local produce, with coal mining boosting local employment. Electricity was connected in the town in December 1931.
The prosperity of the town is reflected in its buildings including the Rising Sun Hotel, St Brigid's Church and several fine houses.
North across the Bremer River, various mines were opened from the 1850s onwards between North Ipswich and Tivoli. This bushland area, which was subdivided into farm allotments in 1861 and mostly sold by 1863, benefited from the renewed interest in coalmining due to railway development. Consequently Ipswich businessmen John Robinson and Harry Hooper financed and named the old Tivoli pit which operated from 1866 until the early 1880s.
This name was thereafter applied to the whole seam and surrounding suburbs. The placename, which has connotations of Copenhagen's pleasure-ground and Rome's d'Este Villa, evidently derived from a middle name used by the Hooper family.
The success of the Old Tivoli Mine led to numerous coalmining ventures in the area, especially those by John Wright, Robert Archibald, James Gulland, the Stafford Brothers, the Bells and the Moffats. These endeavours were important in supplying the Mount Crosby Pumping Station, Ipswich Pumping Station, Queensland Railways and several other works. Consequently Tivoli was riddled with pits, from where coal was transported to the riverside by a tramway.
During the late nineteenth century, other employment included the brickworks at Moores Pocket (c1893) and a sawmill at Waterstown. John Quay, a Chinese man, grew vegetables in the vicinity, while several families including the Wardel, Kain, Brockie, Buckley and Hill, lived in slab timber cottages on Tivoli Hill. Growing cotton and running cattle were other early occupations in the area.
Though the Welsh were strongly represented, the population was mixed in origin. In 1911, during a spate of Russian immigration to Queensland, at least four families settled in the Tivoli area.
Centred around Mt Crosby Road, the Tivoli facilities included a Congregational Church hall, which was built in 1875. There a pitman with some teaching experience taught night school to twenty-one male pupils whose ages ranged from eleven to twenty-two. Two years later the Tivoli Provisional School was opened and land was bought to build a state school. The one-roomed school and four-roomed teacher's residence eventuated in 1881.
During the Second World War the school housed American airmen for a short period, who manned a searchlight sited behind the tennis court, and air-raid trenches were dug nearby. The Principal from 1954 to 1964 recalled that the school residence was a quaint structure with shingles under the iron roof; also that during most winters, bushfires sweeping up the western boundary played havoc in the area.
Walloon and Thagoona
Walloon was a station on the first section of railway line in Queensland which opened in 1865. Guilfoyle's Gully near Walloon was the endpoint of the first railway excursion in Queensland, a 40 minute demonstration trip for dignitaries held on April 22 1865.
A non-vested school opened the same year, mainly for the children of railway workers. Selectors began to take up land about 1866 and the population increased. The railway construction had uncovered evidence of coal deposits and a mine opened on the western bank of Guilfoyle's Gully in 1877, the first of many small mines in this area. By the 1890s, Walloon was thriving with numerous businesses such as blacksmiths, saddler and store.
Thagoona was also on the first section of railway but a station was not obtained until 1881. The first settler was a former sea captain John Nicol Rea who operated a sugar mill then opened a mine between Thagoona and closer to Thagoona in 1914. Early in the 20th century, the small town of Thagoona included about 14 houses and a company boarding house for miners, while many other workers rode their bicycles in from Ipswich. The railway was used for loading and transporting coal. The Caledonian mine closed in 1960.
Both townships have also been centres for the surrounding rural areas, where there were early experiments in growing and crushing sugar cane, along with farming and grazing.
The townships declined after mining ended but are now undergoing a renewal as rural residential and dormitory areas for workers in Ipswich and Brisbane, the railway line having been electrified. Evidence of the former mining operations such as heaps of overburden can still be seen throughout the district.
Northwest of the main settlement, on a bend of the Bremer, Woodend Pocket in 1848 was the first coal-bearing crown land near Ipswich to be subdivided into small 'coal allotments'. However, the anticipated expansion in mining did not eventuate because the portions were too small to be viable. By 1854 only one mine was being worked by two men.
In that year John Ferrett from Dorset, England, opened a coal mine south of the earlier allotments, called the Radstock Pit. Though the mine remained a small operation due to lack of demand and transport difficulties, this has the distinction of being the first successful Ipswich coal mine.
Much of the bushland was cleared by the 1860s, one of the contracts being let to George McCormack. The first Ipswich cotton was grown at Woodend by John Panton, the merchant of Claremont, in 1862. To serve the early settlers, Daniel McGrath opened one of the first schools in Ipswich in 1847.
During succeeding decades, Woodend became the habitat of middle class families, so that much of its heritage is residential, in addition to its significant education institutions. Ipswich Grammar School and St Mary's Convent School were established in 1863, followed by the first convent in 1864 and its successor in 1884. St Mary's College dates from 1946.
Road Names in Woodend, Coalfalls and Sadliers Crossing (PDF, 73 kb)
Ipswich Municipal Council and Ipswich City Council
At an Ipswich Municipal Council meeting held on 20 September 1897 the Works Committee was deemed responsible for the naming of Streets in Ipswich. The Works Committee were empowered to name all unnamed streets in the Municipality and they were asked to report on the advisability of having nameplates for the principal streets of the town.
The Works Committee Report of June 1905 as printed in The Queensland Times on 22 June 1905 informed the community that a number of streets (thoroughfares) had been named. At this time there were approximately thirty to forty streets that had not been designated a name. This article revealed that Council elected to name some streets after some of the Statesmen of England to 'show their loyalty to the Crown'. Other streets were named after Governor-Generals of the Commonwealth; State Governors of Queensland and every ex-Mayor of Ipswich (or nearly all, which had not previously had either a thoroughfare or a park named after them).
In 1971 Council referred to the 'Ipswich Municipal Centenary' by Leslie E. Slaughter when naming new streets in the City and in 1981 roads were named after sportsmen and women who had attained international stardom.
On 28 October 1981 it was recommended that a list of names to supplement the reservoir of names available for use as Street Names be derived from Early Model Aircraft (inventors names and craft names), Native Trees in Queensland, the Galaxy and Planets, disused Coal Mines, Vintage and Veteran Cars and Cities around the world with a population similar to that of Ipswich.
Most street names and places in Ipswich fall into one of the following categories:
Former Moreton Shire Council
The policy for naming rural roads in the former Moreton Shire was for street name submissions to have an historical basis. Most street names fell into one of these themes:
Ipswich City Council maintains a database called the Names Register that records the reasons for naming of streets, suburbs, bridges or places.
The brochures below contain extracts of information from the Ipswich City Council Names Register.
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