Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua (annexed by
Queensland in 1883)
Dark grey: Other British possessions
George Bowen first
Charles Cochrane-Baillie, 2nd Baron Lamington
Charles Cochrane-Baillie, 2nd Baron Lamington last
Parliament of Queensland
Independence from the New South Wales colony
6 June 1859
Federation of Australia
1 January 1901
Today part of
Papua New Guinea
The Colony of
Queensland was a colony of the
British Empire from 1859
to 1901, when it became a State in the federal Commonwealth of
Australia on 1 January 1901. At its greatest extent, the colony
included the present-day State of Queensland, the Territory of Papua
and the Coral Sea Islands Territory.
1.1 Nineteenth century
1.2 Frontier war
1.3 Colony of Queensland
1.3.1 Gold rush
1.4 Other events
1.5 European exploration and settlement
2 See also
Main article: History of Queensland
John Oxley sailed north from Sydney to inspect Port Curtis
(now Gladstone) and
Moreton Bay as possible sites for a penal colony.
At Moreton Bay, he found the
Brisbane River whose existence Cook had
predicted, and proceeded to explore the lower part of it. In September
1824, he returned with soldiers and established a temporary settlement
at Redcliffe. On 2 December, the settlement was transferred to where
the Central Business District (CBD) of
Brisbane now stands. The
settlement was initially called Edenglassie, a portmanteau of the
Edinburgh and Glasgow. Major
Edmund Lockyer discovered
outcrops of coal along the banks of the upper
Brisbane River in
1825. In 1839, transportation of convicts ceased, culminating in
the closure of the
Brisbane penal settlement. In 1842, free settlement
was permitted. In the same year
Andrew Petrie reported favourable
grazing conditions and decent forests to the north of Brisbane, which
led shortly to the arrival of settlers to
Fraser Island and the
Cooloola coast region.
Immigrants aboard the Artemisia arrived at the colony of Moreton Bay
In 1847, the Port of Maryborough was opened as a wool port. The
first immigrant ship to arrive in
Moreton Bay was the Artemisia in
1848. In 1857, Queensland's first lighthouse was built at Cape
Main article: Australian frontier wars
Fighting between Aborigines and settlers in colonial
more bloody than in any other colonial state in Australia, perhaps
partly due to
Queensland having a larger pre-contact indigenous
population than any other colony in Australia, accounting for over one
third, and in some estimates close to forty percent, of the entire
pre-contact population of the continent. The latest
and hitherto most comprehensive survey estimates that some 1,500
European settlers – and their Chinese, Aboriginal and Melanesian
allies – died in frontier skirmishes with Aboriginals in Queensland
during the nineteenth century. The same study indicates that the
casualties Aboriginal people suffered in these battles with settlers
and native police (frequently described by contemporary political
leaders and newspapers as "warfare", "a kind of warfare",
"guerrilla-like warfare", and at times as a "war of extermination") is
highly likely to have exceeded 30,000. (That is a tripling of the
hitherto used minimum estimates for Queensland.) Yet even this
figure is liable to increase if the results of the first attempt to
use extensive primary sources to calculate the Aboriginal casualties
due to violence on the
Queensland frontier in this period is used. A
paper prepared by Raymond Evans and Robert Ørsted-Jensen for the
annual AHA conference at University of
Queensland on 9 July 2014
indicated that a minimum figure of 65,000 Aboriginal casualties is a
more realistic figure. The "Native Police Force" (sometimes "Native
Mounted Police Force"), recruited and deployed by the Queensland
government, was a key instrument in the oppression, dispossession and
murder of indigenous people during this period.
The three largest massacres of whites by Aborigines in Australian
colonial history all took place in Queensland. On 27 October 1857
Martha Fraser's Hornet Bank station on the Dawson River, in central
Queensland took the lives of 11 Europeans. The tent camp of the
embryo station of
Cullin-La-Ringo near Springsure was attacked by
Aborigines on 17 October 1861, killing 19 people including the grazier
Horatio Wills. Following the wreck of the brig Maria at Bramble
Reef near the Whitsunday Islands, on 26 February a total of 14
European survivors were massacred by local Aborigines. The Battle
of One Tree Hill and
Darkey Flat massacre also took place in the
Colony of Queensland
In 1851, a public meeting was held to consider Queensland's separation
from New South Wales. On 6 June 1859
Queen Victoria signed Letters
Patent to form the colony of Queensland. A proclamation was read by
George Bowen on 10 December 1859 whereupon
Queensland was formally
separated from New South Wales. Bowen became the first
Robert Herbert became the first Premier of Queensland.
Queensland was the only Australian colony that commenced immediately
with its own parliament, instead of first spending time as a Crown
Colony (i.e. having a
Governor appointed by The Crown). By this time,
Australia was the only Australian colony without responsible
government. Ipswich and
Rockhampton became towns in 1860, with
Maryborough and Warwick becoming towns the following year.
In 1861, rescue parties for Burke and Wills, which failed to find
them, did some exploratory work of their own, in central and
north-western Queensland. Notably among these was Frederick Walker who
originally worked for the native police.
Brisbane was linked by
electric telegraph to Sydney in 1861, however the first operating
telegraph line in
Queensland was from
Brisbane to Ipswich in the same
Early gold miners were prepared to live rough to strike it rich.
Although smaller than the gold rushes of Victoria and New South Wales,
Queensland had its own series of gold rushes in the later half of the
nineteenth century. In 1858, gold was discovered at Canoona. In
1867, gold was discovered in Gympie. Richard Daintree's explorations
Queensland lead to several goldfields being developed in the
late 1860s. In 1872, William Hann discovers gold on the Palmer
River, southwest of Cooktown. Chinese settlers began to arrive in the
goldfields, by 1877 there were 17,000 Chinese on
fields. In that year restrictions on Chinese immigration were passed.
Mary River residence, ~1870
Pioneer Sugar Mill at Mackay in the 1880s.
1862 saw Queensland's western boundary changed from longitude 141° E
to 138°E. In 1863, the first Chief Justice, Sir
James Cockle was
appointed. 1864 was an annus horribilis for Queensland. In March of
that year, major flooding of the
Brisbane River inundated the centre
of town, in April, fires devastated the west side of Queen Street,
which was the main shopping district and in December, another fire,
which was Brisbane's worst ever, wiped out the rest of Queen Street
and adjoining streets.
1865 saw the first steam trains in Queensland, travelling (from
Ipswich to Bigge's Camp, which is now known as Grandchester).
Townsville gazetted as a town in the same year. In 1867, the
Queensland Constitution was consolidated from existing legislation
under the Constitution Act 1867. Sugar production was by then becoming
a major industry. In 1867, six mills produced 168 tons of cane-sugar,
by 1870 there were 28 mills with a production of 2,854 tons. The
production of sugar started around Brisbane, but spread to Mackay and
Cairns, and by 1888 the annual output of sugar was 60,000
tons. 1871 saw George Phipps, 2nd Marquess of
Normanby become the
Governor of Queensland. The first record of a
rugby match played in
Queensland occurred in 1876. In 1877, Arthur
Edward Kennedy became the
Governor of Queensland. The first meat
processed in the state occurred at Queensport along the
Queensland Premier Sir
Thomas McIlwraith annexes Papua (later
repudiated by British government). On 2 June the decision to form a
rugby union association was made at the Exchange hotel in
Brisbane. The same year Queensland's population passed the 250,000
mark. In 1887, the Brisbane-Wallangarra railway line was opened, and
in 1888 there was a 483-mile (777 km) line opened between
Brisbane and Charleville. There were other lines that were nearly
Rockhampton to Longreach, and others being constructed
around Maryborough, Mackay and Townsville. By 1888, there were more
than 5 million cattle in Queensland.
Brisbane during the 1893
1891 saw the Great Shearers' Strike at Barcaldine leads to formation
of the Australian Labor Party. The issue in the strike was whether
employers were entitled to use non-union labour. There were troops and
police called in, some sheds were fired, and there were mass riots.
There was a second shearers strike in 1894. Union sponsored candidates
won sixteen seats at the
Queensland elections in 1893. The 1893
Brisbane flood caused much destruction including destroying the
Victoria Bridge. The land where the
Brisbane Cricket Ground now sits
was first used as a cricket ground in 1895, with the first cricket
match played there in December 1896. In 1897, Native (Aboriginal)
Police force disbanded.
Coal mine in Ipswich, 1898
In 1899, the world's first Labor Party Government, with Premier
Anderson Dawson as the leader, was elected into power only to last one
week. In July 1899
Queensland offered to send a force of 250 mounted
infantry to help Britain in the
Second Boer War
Second Boer War (Second Anglo-Boer
War). Also in that year, gold production at Charters Towers
peaked. The first natural gas find in
at Roma in 1900 as a team was drilling a water well. The Mahina
Cyclone of 1899 strikes Cape York Peninsula, destroying a pearling
fleet in Princess Charlotte Bay. The cyclone claimed the lives of
around 400 people, making it Queensland's worst maritime disaster.
During the 1890s many workers known as the
Kanakas were brought to
Queensland from neighbouring Pacific Island nations to work in the
sugar cane fields. Some of whom had been kidnapped under a process
known as Blackbirding. When
Australia was federated in 1901, the White
Australia policy came into effect, whereby all foreign workers in
Australia were deported under the Pacific Island Labourers Act of
1901. At this time there were between 7,000 and 10,000 Pacific
Islanders living in Queensland. Most of them had been deported by
1908, by which time there were only 1500–2500 remaining.
European exploration and settlement
In 1606, the Dutch navigator
Willem Janszoon landed near the site of
the modern-day town of Weipa on the western shore of Cape York. His
arrival was the first recorded encounter between European and
Australian Aboriginal people.
In 1614, Luis Váez de Torres, a Spanish explorer may have sighted the
Queensland coast at the tip of Cape York. In that year, he had sailed
the Torres Strait, the body of water now named after him.
In 1768, the French explorer
Louis Antoine de Bougainville
Louis Antoine de Bougainville sailed west
New Hebrides islands, getting to within a hundred miles of
Queensland coast. He did not reach the coast because he did not
find a passage through the coral reefs, and turned back.
Lieutenant James Cook claimed the east coast under instruction from
King George III
King George III of England on 22 August 1770 at Possession Island,
Australia "New South Wales". This included the
present Queensland. Cook charted the Australian east coast in his ship
HM Barque "Endeavour", naming Stradbroke and Morton (now Moreton
Island) islands, the Glass House Mountains, Double Island Point, Wide
Hervey Bay and the Great Sandy Cape, now called Fraser Island.
His second landfall in
Australia was at Round Hill Head, 500 km
north of Brisbane. The Endeavour was grounded on a coral reef near
Cape Tribulation, on 11 June 1770 where he was delayed for almost
seven weeks while they repaired the ship. This occurred where Cooktown
now lies, on the Endeavour River, both places named after the
incident. On 22 August the Endeavour reached the northern tip of
Queensland, which Cook named the
Cape York Peninsula
Cape York Peninsula after the Duke of
In 1799, in the Norfolk,
Matthew Flinders spent six weeks exploring
Queensland coast as far north as Hervey Bay. In 1802 he explored
the coast again. On a later trip to England, his ship the HMS Porpoise
and the accompanying Cato ran aground on a coral reef off the
Queensland coast. Flinders set off for Sydney in an open cutter, at a
distance of 750 miles (1,210 km), where the
Governor sent ships
back to rescue the crew from Wreck Reef.
Separation of Queensland
History of Queensland
History of Brisbane
Federation of Australia
^ "History". New Hope Coal. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
^ "Cooloola Recreation Area, Great Sandy National Park: Nature,
culture and history". Department of National Parks, Sport and Racing.
15 January 2015. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
^  Archived 7 February 2005 at the Wayback Machine.
^ Ørsted-Jensen, Robert: Frontier History Revisited: – Colonial
Queensland and the 'History War,
Brisbane 2011; Evans, Raymond: The
country has another past:
Queensland and the History Wars, in
‘Passionate Histories: Myth, memory and Indigenous Australia’
Aboriginal History Monograph 21, September 2010 (Edited by Frances
Peters-Little, Ann Curthoys and John Docker).; Queenslander 1 May 1880
Brisbane Courier, 8 May 1880, p.2e-f, editorial; The Way We
Civilise; Black and White; The Native Police: – A series of articles
and letters Reprinted from the ‘Queenslander’ (Brisbane, December
1880); Rusden: History of
Australia Vol 3 pp.146–56 & 235
^ "Welcome to Frontier". Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
Retrieved 4 August 2010.
^ Australia. "Stories of the Dreaming – Australian Museum".
Dreamtime.net.au. Retrieved 4 August 2010. ; NSWV&P re 26
October 1857; MBC 14 November 1857. Book: Reid, Gordon: A Nest of
Hornets: The Massacre of the Fraser family at Hornet Bank Station,
Central Queensland, 1857, and related events, Melbourne 1982.
Queensland State Archive re 11 November 1861 – COL/R2/61/893; 12
November 1861 – COL/R2/61/894; 30 October 1861 – COL/A22/61/2790;
Rockhampton Bulletin 29 October 1861;
Brisbane Courier 5 November
Brisbane Courier 9 November 1861, p2c-d;
11 November 1861, p2g-3a;
Brisbane Courier 9 December 1861, p3c-d
Book: Reid, Gordon: A Nest of Hornets: The Massacre of the Fraser
family at Hornet Bank Station, Central Queensland, 1857, and related
events, Melbourne 1982.
^ Sydney Morning Herald 7 March 1872; Sydney Morning Herald 11 March
1872; Port Denison Times 28 Mar 1872;
Brisbane Courier 4/4/72;
Queensland State Archive COL/A172/72/1812; Queenslander 6 April 1872,
p9; Sydney Morning Herald 2 February 1874, p3e-f.
^ "Q150 Timeline".
Queensland Treasury. Retrieved 28 October
Queensland History Wiki – People – FrederickWalker".
Cqhistory.com. 2 July 2006. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011.
Retrieved 4 August 2010.
^ Dunn, Col (1985). The History of Electricity in Queensland.
Bundaberg: Col Dunn. p. 14. ISBN 0-9589229-0-X.
Queensland History Wiki – Places – CanoonaGoldFields".
Cqhistory.com. 16 July 2006. Retrieved 4 August 2010.
^ G. C. Bolton, 'Daintree, Richard (1832–1878)'. Australian
Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian
National University. 1972. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
^ P. Fynes-Clinton. "The Beef Industry in Queensland" (PDF). Retrieved
20 June 2014.
^  Archived 18 October 2005 at the Wayback Machine.
^ "World History". Charters Towers Regional Council. Archived from the
original on 6 April 2011. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
^ The Oil and Gas Year Australia. Wildcat Publishing. 2009.
p. 18. ISBN 978-1-906975-08-1.
^ "Documenting Democracy". Foundingdocs.gov.au. Archived from the
original on 26 October 2009. Retrieved 4 August 2010.
^ Cite error: The named reference r-evans-hoq was invoked but never
defined (see the help page).
^ European discovery and the colonisation of