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  • Day11

    Old Government House

    May 2 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    We continued out walk to Old Government House which was originally the area that became known as Gardens Point and was originally covered in thick scrub.

    In 1825 the Moreton Bay penal settlement was established on the northern bank of the river. The land nearest the point was cleared to grow much needed food for the struggling convict settlement.

    In 1855, overgrown and unused for almost twenty-five years, the land was subdivided into town allotments, but the people of Brisbane petitioned the Sydney based government in protest against the sale.

    After Queensland achieved separation from New South Wales in 1859 one of the first acts of Queensland's new Parliament was to provide the colony's first governor with a 'fitting' home. The building had to serve two distinct purposes as being a private residence for the governor and his family and as an official state office, it would be the hub of colonial life in the early days of Brisbane.

    The newly appointed Government Architect Charles Tiffin designed the building in 1860. He incorporated a number of adaptations to the Greek revival style to better suit it to the local climate.
    Tiffin was a significant figure in Victorian-era public architecture in Australia, and went on to design over 300 Queensland buildings.

    The House was built by Joshua Jeays, who punted the huge loads of sandstone used for its construction down the Brisbane River from his Goodna quarry. Jeays was also an alderman in the first Brisbane Municipal Council and later served as mayor.

    The House was completed in May 1862 at a total cost of £17,000.

    Currently within the Old government House is the William Robinson Gallery. I was not a lover of his art work but found it very interesting. He has also won 2 Archibald Prizes both are currently in the gallery.
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    Melissa Wilson

    What a cultural day