With all the fervor of an evangelist, the Rev. Dr. John Dunmore Land spent 1846 to 1848 recruiting migrants for Moreton Bay. He worked in competition with the official migration scheme, but his chartered vessel, the Fortitude, arrived a month after the Land and Emigration Commissioner’s Artemesia. Although led to believe that they would be given land on arrival, Lang’s migrants were denied this. When they came ashore they had nowhere to go and many were almost destitute. They were allowed to form a shanty town out on the slopes of what is now Gregory Terrace and Water Street near the notorious fringe settlement of York’s Hollow, close to where the Exhibition Grounds are now. The name Fortitude valley came from that early village of Fortitude migrants.
On occasions, the later inhabitants have misplaced Aboriginal place names. This happened to Pinken-ba, the place of tortoises. It originally referred to what we now call New Farm, and the Aboriginal people referred to the area now known as Pinkenba as Dumben, a kind of tree fern.
Lytton district and holding was named by Sir George Bowen in 1859 after Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer, the first Baron Lytton, 1803-1873. This flashy young man around London was the son of an army general and a wealthy mother who cut off his money supply when he married against her wishes, so he turned to writing novels to get an income. However his relationship with his wife deteriorated to the point that he gained a legal separation in 1836. This did not stop her writing attacks on her husband, attacks which affected the parliamentary career he had started four years earlier. He alternated between writing and politics throughout his life. He was Secretary for the Colonies in Lord Derby's ministry, 1858-1859, at the time Queeensland was separated off from New South Wales. He became Baron Lytton of Knebworth in 1866. He is more famous for his writing than he is as a parliamentarian. He was more skillful with the written than with the spoken word.
Following the publication of a report on Queensland's defences in 1877 a fort was established at Lytton to protect Brisbane from naval attack. The Aboriginal name for the area was Gnaloongpin.
When the N.S.W. Governor advised the establishment of an agricultural station away from the Brisbane settlement, Captain Logan and Colonial Botanist Fraser, selected a tract of land on the north side of the Brisbane River backed by ‘a fine creek’ (Serpentine Creek). It comprised undulating ridges of a gentle height with a small watercourse between each one. The soil was a rich, brown loam which supported a luxuriant growth of native grasses and was lightly timbered mainly with blue gum. An agricultural establishment was commenced there in 1829 using convict labour. Later it was used as the place for women prisoners. It got its name from the large number of eagles seen in the area.
The Aboriginal name for the area was Yerrool and a long sandy reach in front of this area was called mooroo-mooroobbin, meaning long nose. The name of Hamilton was first given to a hotel probably built by Gustavus Hamilton, solicitor, of Toowomba, and later owned by Sam Hamilton. The suburb gained its name from the hotel.
Murrarie is one of those districts that got its name when the railway came through. An Aboriginal word meaning plenty of sweet water was adopted.
On Thursday, 16 September, 1824, John Oxley, Alan Cunningham and Lieutenant Butler, with nine boatmen and servants, travelling in two boats, left the brig Amity moored off Redcliffe Point and rowed to the mouth of the Brisbane River. They travelled upstream to the head of what Oxley called Sea Reach and camped the night at a grassy spot on the bank there. Four of the local Aboriginal inhabitants came around as they were setting up camp. The country was in the grip of drought, and a reedy swamp nearby linked to the river by a creek had dried up. The only water they found was brackish and undrinkable, so they had to open their water cask that evening.
They woke next morning to a slight fog and tried again to find fresh water but without success. They ate a hasty breakfast without any water and hurried to pack up. Their idea was to press on to the point where Oxley had discovered, in the previous year, that the river turned fresh. The inquisitive natives came back and took off with a mountain barometer, a case of drawing tablets and some other things. The exploring party only recovered their possessions after the discharge of a firearm by Lieutenant Butler. After this incident, they pushed off around 8 am. The creek near which this occurred they referred to as Breakfast Creek. It had been a dry, but memorable breakfast.
The name Bulimba is of Aboriginal origin, but it was not the Aboriginal name for the area. The Aboriginal people called that part of the world Tugulawa. It was White's Hill, over near Cannon Hill, that they called Bulimba. However when the pioneering settler, David McConnell of Cressbrook in the Brisbane Valley built a house there 1849-1850 he called it Bulimba. This is a two-story house modelled on the family's home in the English county of Derbyshire, and the suburb gained its name from this, one of the earliest stone houses built in Brisbane.
When David McConnell returned from Scotland with his young wife they made Bulimba their home. He sold off some of his land cheaply to people who worked for him. Others also bought in the area. But the house was sold in 1854 when David and Mary McConnell went back to Britain because of her health. When they came back in 1862 they lived at Cressbrook.
The Aboriginal name for the area where Newstead House stands was Karakaran-pinbilli (Petrie), and for the whole district Burudabin (Booroodabin), place of oaks, but the suburb derives its name from the house built for Patrick Leslie, who with his brothers, Walter and George, was an early settler on the Southern Darling Downs.
Patrick Leslie, son of a Scottish laird, married into the famous Macarthur family of New South Wales. He might have been a good bushman, but was not the best at looking after financial affairs, and this saw him in difficulties more than once. Politically he was an archconservative and was, for a short time, a member of the NSW Legislative Assembly just before separation. He was pugnacious and argumentative, a vigorous critic of Rev. John Dunmore Lang and others. He took up breeding racehorses.
Captain John Wickham RN, Patrick Leslie's brother-in-law, who owned land nearby bought the property in 1847, and since he was the Government Resident in the years leading up to separation Newstead House was like a Government House during those years. The track, which Wickham established by riding his horse to and from Brisbane Town, eventually became Wickham Street. He left Australia and retired to the South of France when both the New South Wales and Queensland governments refused his application for a pension.
Hawthorne in Brisbane is named indirectly after Hawthorne in Melbourne. When the Baynes family moved from Victoria around 1875 they called their house here Hawthorne House. The name then came to be used of the locality from the 1880s.
William Henry Baynes was born in England in 1833, the son of a butcher. He purchased a Brisbane butchery in 1859, then with his brothers established the Graziers' Butchering and Meat Export Company in 1880. This was liquidated in 1897, but they started up another business 1898. From 1878 to 1883 he was a member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly. They say that he grew hawthorn hedges on his property, another reason then for calling his place Hawthorne House.
The original stockyards for Brisbane were near the Normanby, but when they were relocated a little further out to an area known then as the Three Mile Scrub they were called the New Market. Hence, with English precedents, the name was given to the suburb that developed there.
Several areas around the state were thrown open to closer settlement after the First World War by being offered to returned soldiers. The Gap was one of these. Forty-two ex-soldiers were settled on nine-acre (3.25 hectares) blocks in an area that had first been settled in the 1860s. The district derived its name from a gap in the Taylor Ranges.
Sir Thomas Brisbane was forty-eight years of age when he arrived to take over the governorship of New South Wales from Governor Lauchlan Macquarie in 1821.
He was following Commissioner Bigge's recommendations when he sent John Oxley to select a site for another penal settlement. This was to be a place to which convicts who had been convicted of a second crime could be sent. At 8 am on Tuesday, 2 December, 1823, the Surveyor-General, having been told by Finnegan and Pamphlet of a large river in the vicinity, entered the mouth of the river which was then named after the Governor. In the following year, Oxley returned to the area, with Lieutenant Henry Miller and a party of 14 soldiers and about 30 convicts to establish a settlement. After setting up a temporary settlement at Redcliffe, he explored the Brisbane River further, recommending several sites as suitable for the permanent settlement. Later in the year Governor Brisbane came to look for himself, and they decided on a spot near Breakfast Creek. When, however, the move was actually made between March and July, 1825, the site chosen was where William Street in the city is now.
At the same time Thomas Brisbane had his own troubles. He had made enemies among the leading citizens of New South Wales and through their efforts was recalled after four years in the colony.
The name first used for the township on the Brisbane River was that suggested by Chief Justice Forbes, Edenglassie, but in 1834 the name of Brisbane became official. The Aboriginal people who lived on the south side of the river called the area where the Botanical Gardens were established, Meeanjin, meaning the tulipwood, a tree which grew well in the area before white settlement, but in the 19th century Brisbane came to be known to all the Moreton Bay Aboriginal people as Maginuchin.
When John Oxley first saw the area now known as Kangaroo Point it was a jungle fringed with mangroves by the river and on the higher ground open forest covered with thick grass. Doubtlessly it was this grass which attracted the kangaroos thus giving the place its name.
Back in the early years of free settlement, Main Street was merely a track through the wattle and tea-tree scrub used by bullock teams. The crossing to Brisbane Town was at Petrie's Bight. The area was quarried for building stone. John Campbell established a boiling down works there in the 1840s.
The Aboriginal people called the area the place of the land tortoise and used to catch these freshwater tortoises there in a net or by hand. Then they roasted them on their backs with the carapace serving as a dish. The Aboriginal name was Binkin-ba, but Europeans altered the pronunciation to Pinkenba and gave it to another place. As the name suggests it was developed as a new farm for the convict settlement. It was surveyed by Dixon in 1839.
If some Brisbane suburban names testify to royalist sentiments, Milton points to a famous anti-royalist writer of the 17th century. John Milton, better known as a poet, the author of Paradise Lost, spent much of his life writing pamphlets against episcopacy and monarchy. He was a Puritan in the days of Oliver Cromwell in England.
The suburb was not named directly after the blind poet, but rather after a property there. Two names are associated with the development of this property: Ambrose Eldridge, a pharmacist who had gone bankrupt in Sydney before moving north and who, by 1853, had tried growing cotton on land in the 'western suburbs' of Brisbane, and John Frederick McDougall, a pastoralist who lost his properties on the other side of the Great Dividing Range in the 1894 crash. It was the Railway Department's choice of this name for the station which gave the name to the suburb.
The main settlement in convict Brisbane was on the north side of the river along by the present William Street, but a settlement started to develop on the south side fairly early. It developed more rapidly as the area was opened up for free settlement so that, for a time, Brisbane and South Brisbane vied with each other for size. The first regular ferry service across the river between Brisbane and South Brisbane commenced operating in 1843. Others followed. Several hotels opened up there in the 1850s and 60s. One track led from the south bank of the river to a swamp at Wooloongabba where it met up with a track coming in from Kangaroo Point. It then plunged away to the south and to the west. South Brisbane gained its own local government, 7 January, 1888.
Norman Park was named after General Sir Henry Norman, Governor of Queensland, 1 May, 1889 to 31 December, 1895. He arrived in Brisbane at the age of 63, having spent over forty years in India, although just prior to coming to Queensland he had been Governor of Jamaica for six years. His third wife, Alice, accompanied him. His previous wives had died. He died 1904, by this time having been awarded the rank of Field Marshall in the British Army.
Auchenflower was the Scottish birthplace of Sir Thomas McIlwraith. He gave that name to the grand house, Auchenflower House, which he bought and developed on the outskirts of Brisbane, and the suburb gained its name from the house.
A later governor said of McIlwraith that he was 'an able bully with a face like a dugong and a temper like a buffalo.' Others have called him a big man with big ideas. He was Premier three times between 1879 and 1893, but resigned from parliament, 1897, after a scandal broke over the affairs of the Queensland National Bank of which he was a director. He died in London in 1900.
The Aboriginal name for the area was Kuripla, the place for rats, but people who had come out from England had London's West End in mind when they gave this name to this area of South Brisbane which had once been so thickly covered with scrub.
Surveyor James Warner gave this densely wooded range the name of Sierra Madre, but it never took on. The Wilson family who settled there in the mid 1860s seem to have been the first to use the name of Highgate Hill. Its Aboriginal name was Beenung-urrung, frilled lizard.
Known to the cricketing world as The Gabba, Tom Petrie claimed that if the original Aboriginal word had been retained it would have been Wulonkoppa. The word meant whirling around, and it was the name for a series of waterholes where, after rain, the water ran from one to another, swirling around before rushing out again. These waterholes were famous for the freshwater crayfish found in them. There is an early reference to wattle-scented Woolloongabba.
In the early days of free settlement a track came in from Kangaroo Point and another from South Brisbane. They met by a swamp which came to be referred to as The One Mile, and then from this point another track went off through the scrub to take the teamsters and travellers to any of the developing areas south or west of Brisbane. This swamp was later filled in and used as the Woolloongabba railway yards. It now houses the Queensland Government's Land Centre.
This was the Aboriginal name for the Common Koel, Eudynamys scolopacea, a name which imitated the sound made by the bird. This cuckoo is found all through coastal Queensland. It appears that the Aboriginal people used the name for the bend in the river downstream from where the Indoorooprilly railway bridge came to be built because these birds must have been particularly prevalent in the area. They generally like forests with tall trees. However Richard Drew applied the name to a different area when he subdivided blocks around a creek which white people already called Toowong Creek, an area which became an elite suburb in the early decades of free settlement. When land was first sold in the area back in 1851 it was simply referred to as the 'Western Suburbs'. In the early days, it was known as the village of 'Noona'.
The Aboriginal word for the area, yinduru-pilly, meant gully of leeches or gully of running water. The area where the railway bridge was built across the river was called milbarpa while the pocket downstream from it was called tu-wong, meaning black koel bird.
The university suburb is named after the island of St Lucia in the West Indies, or at least it is named after W.A.Wilson’s property which he called St Lucia after the West Indian island where he was born. Wilson’s marriage to a Miss Ironside gives a clue to the naming of a school in the adjacent area (Ironside). Wilson had bought a cane farm there from Richard Gailey, who, in turn, had bought part of the land once owned by Cribb and called Lang’s Farm in honour of Rev. John Dunmore Lang, the immigrant activist.
Sugar used to be grown in this area, and the cane was said to have been introduced from the sugar-growing island of St Lucia in the West Indies. Today's St Lucia Golf Links club house was originally the home of Mr Dart of the St Lucia Sugar Mill. In the early days, settlers spoke of 'Long Pocket' and 'Short Pocket', the latter name being applied to the St Lucia reach of the river.
The area was named after Charles Boydell Dutton, a native-born Australian who acquired extensive property and grazing interests in Queensland and was a member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly from 1883 to 1888 during which time he served successively as Minister for Lands, Minister for Mines and Works, and Minister for Railways. In spite of his pastoral interests, he gained the reputation of being a humanitarian liberal. When he married in 1865 he was 31 years of age and his wife, Martha, was 17.
Before being given this name, the area was known at Boggo. The cemetery was known as Dutton's Park from its inception.
George and Samuel Grimes from Leicestershire, England, came to the Moreton Bay settlement under John Dunmore Lang’s immigration scheme in 1849. These brothers farmed first at Kurilpa and then on a property they called Fairfield. From this farmland there eventually developed the suburb of that name. They grew and milled sugar, and grew and marketed arrowroot. In 1885 they bought Hope Island in the Coomera River. Both were prominent Baptist laymen, members of the Queensland Legislative Assembly and active in public affairs.
Joseph Wecker's farm was known locally as 'Wecker's green slopes' before that name was used for the subdivision of the property in the second decade of the twentieth century. This German immigrant was the earliest known settler in the area. After farming there for some time he extended his property by buying some undulating land at the rear of his property from a Reginald Jennings, and grew lucerne there, calling it his 'green slopes'
Lucinda Logan, the daughter of Thomas Logan, suggested the name which was agreed to by a meeting of local residents in 1868. It seemed appropriate for an area drained by streams, but it may have been suggested by Brookfield in the Hunter Valley District of New South Wales near which her family had lived before coming to Gold Creek. It was adopted as the school name in 1871. Lucy Logan became Mrs J. S. Brimblecombe after her marriage. It may have been a coincidence, but the fact that the early settler who has been called The Father of Brookfield, Thomas Isaac Jones, had been born in Brookfield Cottage, Portsmouth, England, may also have helped in the making of the decision.
Kenmore means big headland in Gaelic. Andrew Todd arrived with his wife Grace and son as assisted immigrants in 1863. In 1880, he had sufficient funds to purchase 100 acres in what is now Kenmore. For a reason unknown, he named the property, a dairy farm, Kenmore Park.
The name seems to be derived from Chelmer River in Essex, the stream on which Chelmsford was built. It was the name given to the railway station when the railway line opened in the 1880s.
The Aboriginal name for Long Pocket in Brisbane was Tuwong, meaning koel cuckoo.
This once heavily timbered area along by the river is known today by a name reminiscent of the Yerong people's name for the area, Yerongpa, meaning sandy place. There is also a New South Wales reference to this word which states that the meaning is the initiation of a bora ring.
Yurong-pilly meant 'Rain is coming' in the Yaggara dialect. This was a dialect of the Yerong tribe spoken by Aborigines in the sandy country between Ipswich and Brisbane.
Literally the name means agreeable village, but it was named after the daughter of Samuel Grimes, the local member of parliament. The Railways Department asked him to suggest a name for the station to be located on the new line through the old Boyland estate and his suggestion of Graceville was prompted by his daughter's name, Grace. Captain Boyland owned two cargo boats, the Hawk, and the Swallow, which plied between Brisbane and Ipswich.
Alfred Tennyson, the clergyman’s son who came to be England’s leading poet for at
least half of the 19th century gave expression to the experience and feelings of his generation as no one else was able to do. As a result he became Lord Tennyson. He belonged so much to the Victorian Age though that later generations have not appreciated his work nearly to the extent as did his contemporaries.
The suburb gained its name from Sherwood homestead. The area was once part of the estate owned by Captain John Boyland which extended from Oxley to Indooroopilly in a stretch known as Boyland’s Pocket. The property gained its name from Sherwood Forest near Nottingham, England, the domain of Robin Hood and his Merry Men. It is derived from the words ‘shire’s wood’ or common forest land belonging to the shire.
If you thought that Fig Tree Pocket received its name from its being a river pocket upon which there once grew a large number of fig trees, you would be right.
The Corinda holding was taken up by J.W.Raven, 27 June, 1863, but the property, named after another in the Mitchell district in Queensland, is also linked to the name of Sir Arthur Palmer. In the 1870s it was owned by a company in which he held an interest. The name is of Aboriginal origin, but what it means is not known.
Arthur Hunter Palmer, born in Armagh, Ireland, arrived in Sydney 1838. He managed grazing properties belonging to Henry Dangar for 23 years and then started building his own pastoral empire. He was a Member of the Legislative Assembly from 1866 to 1881, and for nearly four of those years was Premier. He was a member of the Legislative Council from 1881 until his death in 1898. Apart from Corinda he occupied some of the other great houses around Brisbane at one time or another, notably Fernberg and Oakwal.
The Railway Department at first simply referred to the rail junction as the South Brisbane Railway Junction, but W.H.Hassell who surveyed the estate for development suggested the Corinda name for the suburb.
Pullenvale gained its name from Pullen Pullen Creek, of Aboriginal origin. Pullen-pullen means tournament.
The name is clearly of Aboriginal origin, but its Aboriginal meaning us not known.
The name which has been is use from the 1960s is an Aboriginal word plucked out of a published list of Aboriginal words and means bare hills. It did not belong to any local dialect.
This suburb gains its name from the Sinnamon family who came to the area with the migration of a county squire from Portadown, Northern Ireland, in 1863, and whose grandson, Sir Hercules Sinnamon, sold the land upon which the suburb was built as part of the development consequent upon the opening of the Centenary Bridge.
The suburban area known as Seventeen Mile Rocks got its name from the rocks of that same name in the Brisbane River nearby. They were so named because they were seventeen miles upstream from Brisbane Town.
The waterways provided the main means of transport in the early days of white settlement, but these rocks were a risk to navigation. In June, 1842, the captains of two paddle-steamers held a race to see who could get to Redbank first. Captain Cape in the Sovereign was ahead of Captain Chambers in the Edwards when his vessel hit one of the rocks and the race had to be abandoned. However a channel was charted through the rocks and the river continued to be used by vessels drawing up to 2.13 metres. But the Swallow of the Bremer Steam Navigation Company was wrecked there in 1855. In 1863 John Petrie built an island of stone blocks in the river in carrying out his contract to remove the rocks and deepen the channel. This island was removed just over a hundred years later when further deepening of the channel was carried out.
John Oxley, as the Surveyor-General of Lands in New South Wales, was given the job of locating a site for a new convict settlement in 1823, and as a result of his recommendations Governor Brisbane decided that it should be situated at Moreton Bay. He came with the first party of soldiers and convicts, located the first, temporary, settlement at Redcliffe and made recommendations about suitable sites for the permanent settlement up along the banks of the Brisbane River.
On his first exploratory trip up the Brisbane River he named the creek where Parsons, Finnegan and Pamphlett had found a canoe to take them down the river Canoe River, but this was later officially changed to Oxley Creek. Along with the suburb of Oxley, it continues to perpetuate his name.
He has been described as hasty in judgment and jealous of others' achievements and resentful of criticism. For example, he was angered by Lockyer's suggestion that the real discoverers of the Brisbane River were Finnegan, Parsons and Pamphett. He claimed that credit for himself.
John Oxley, while on his initial journey up the Brisbane River, camped nearby and climbed this hill that he called Green Hill and took bearings from its summit. But it gained its present name, and hence so did the suburb, from the young man whom Dr Stephen Simpson of Wolston House hoped would inherit his property. Having no children of his own Simpson hoped that his sister's grandson would inherit it, but it was not to be. Young J.M.Ommaney RN mounted a spirited horse one day and galloped across the open country toward this hill on the property but the animal threw its rider when it put its foot in a hole in the ground and the young man was killed.
The industrial suburb developed by Hooker Centenary gained its name from a pre-existing road. It is not known who the road was named after. Probably an English migrant of the late 1880s.
The suburban area gets its name from the creek, home of the Easter Water Dragon, Maggil in the Yugarubal language of the Jagara people.
John Williams mined for coal on the bank of the river there in 1849, but it was John Dunmore Lang who promoted the area as a most favourable locality for settlement with the result that some of his immigrants who came out on the Fortitude settled there on Pullen Pullen Creek.
Wacol is a composite word made up from the words weigh and coal. Coal used to be weighed there on the Ipswich railway line. It was named by the Railway Department in 1927.
The name comes from the Aboriginal name for the area and it meant dung. (Petrie)