The reason for this website is to have online a collection of journals, field books, and historical documents written by the explorers and pioneers of South East Queensland. The need for such a site derives from their inaccessibility online. Some of these documents have been published in books or periodicals that are now out of print.
We also strive to annotate the documents and to relate them to each other, as well as to modern maps and landmarks. We've also gone to the physical location to take photographs and add extra footnotes to the documents. Doing thorough, and local research to fully grasp what it must have been like for the early pioneers, explorers, and natives.
The region South East Queensland, also called Moreton Bay District, covers wide area of land mention in the below extract from The Sydney Gazette of 12 May 1842 reported: "His Excellency the Governor has defined the boundaries of the Moreton Bay district to be as follows: 'On the south by the ranges which separate the sources of the Rivers Brisbane and Logan form those of the Richmond and Clarence; on the west by the range dividing the sources of the rivers flowing into the western interior from those which fall to the eastern coast; on the east by that coast; and on the northward by the limits of colonization, until a more definite boundary shall be determined on that side."
The website also brings together historical research to better understand the local native lifestyle, traditions, food, shelter, and language. In all ways striving to be objective and only present the evidence and not make assumptions. In reading the documentation, you will find the local aboriginals we're hospitable, respectful, intelligent, and well advanced in net-making compared to other regions in Australia.
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Captain of the Norfolk, in 1799 Matthew Flinders and his crew had the first interaction with the local indigenous tribes.
In 1823, John Oxley and his crew officially discovered the Brisbane River. He also rescued the infamous Shipwreck Treo (Pamphlett, Parsons, and Finnegan).
Thomas Archer was a successful pioneer in Moreton Bay District. His family migrated through the Darling Downs and settled in Durundur (near Woodford), before eventually moving further north. His ability for hard work, interest in literature, and adaptibility lead to his success.
Thomas Petrie, the son of Andrew Petrie, was raised in Brisbane and interacted amongst the local indigenous tribes. He spoke their language and was priviledge to learn the customs and traditions they practiced.
There is a content warning for the site. This is due to the graphic descriptions of tribal battles and cannibalism. The aborigines were rather civil and respectful to each other. The eating of a tribal member was almost a sign of honour, after they died naturally or during battle. In each category that contains cannibalism there is a content warning.
SEQ History advises that some of the content in these articles contain graphic descriptions of violence and cannibalism. SEQ History recommends that the content is not suitable for those under the age of 15 years old, and should not be read without the approval of a parent or legal guardian.