Throwback Thursday – Dawson Parade, the way it was

From The Samford Museum

Bullocks at Grovely slaughter yards. near Dawson Parade c.a. 1915.John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Image number Former digital ID: picqld-citrix06–2004-08-27-14-42

The Hills District and surrounds is steeped in a rich history. In fact, most of the area was made up of farms. Thanks to the Samford Museum, we are pleased to publish an extract from local lady, Gwen Finney’s story that was sourced from the Samford Reminiscences Vol 5.

“My parents Peter and Jessie Barker’s farm was in Dawson Parade, Grovely where Leslie Patrick Park, Arana Hills is today.  Their family of three boys and two girls.  The eldest son Hector died aged 5 years from diphtheria. 

I, Gwen, was a horse lover. I used to ride my horse Flora to Groveley School on Samford Road. This school later became Mitchelton Infants School.  I would unsaddle and unbridle Flora and let her go on Mitchelton flats which was an area between the school and Blackwood Road.  The grass was always green there but often she would go home without me and I’d have to walk. 

When I was twelve I took the cream can in the sulky to Mitchelton Railway Station for my father.  The Station Master lifted the can out for me as I was too small to handle it.    He would say “Hurry along Miss Barker” as I was always running late and had to go home an get ready for school.  Sometimes I walked through the bush.to school.

On the southern side of Kedron Brook where Wests- Arana Rugby Leagues Club there were market gardens One of these gardeners was named Mon-hop.”

In 1932, Gwen was a passenger on a special rail trip to a mystery hike destination at Closeburn. The hike was to Upper Cedar Creek. An article appeared in The Saturday Night Telegraph which included a photo of Gwen in breeches and riding boots (see above).

This was long before another picnic train destined for Closeburn crashed at Camp Mountain.  A new book by Peter Burden and Graham Bailey titled The Camp Mountain Railway Disaster 5th May 1947 is available from the Samford Museum. Cost is  $15 per copy and the book tells  the story of the special trains that ran on the Dayboro line to accommodate Picnic and Labour Day holiday traffic, the accident and the inquiry which followed. 

For Samford Museum enquiries, contact Geoff on  0417 610 983

Photo from the 1932 Telegraph featuring Gwen Barker (later
Mrs Finney)

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