Bankfoot House and Grigor family, Glasshouse Mountains

Bankfoot House and Grigor family, Glasshouse Mountains

Bankfoot House was established in 1868 by William and Mary Grigor. The residence was a stopover for Cobb & Co coaches, which travelled to the Goldfields, between Brisbane to Gympie. Travellers would stop in for lunch or overnight. They would pay one shilling for a meal, one shilling for a bed and one shilling for the horses’feed and stable. The property also had its own dairy cattle and Post Office. In the early 1890’s a railway was built, so the Post Office was moved to the Glasshouse Railway station and William Grigor became the postmaster there. Bankfoot remained as a lodging house and often accommodated visitors, who came to climb the nearby mountains. The property remained in the family for three generations, the Grigor, Burgess and Ferries families, for over 130 years. It remains the oldest surviving residence in the Glasshouse Mountains. It was bought by the Caloundra City Council in 2002, after the death of the last resident, Jack Ferris. Today it is a house museum, Bankfoot House. Reference: https://heritage.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/Places/Bankfoot-House

Bankfoot House
P55478
Hotels - “Bankfoot House” being demolished
« 1 of 4 »
George Chester, the ‘Banana Case Baron’

George Chester, the ‘Banana Case Baron’

Italian workers carrying bunches of bananas to conveyor on Mr G. Chester’s plantation,Upper Commera 1954. P54487

Upper Coomera is located in the Gold Coast region and was first explored in 1827 by Captain Patrick Logan. It was initial a prominent area for its farming of sugar and maize and timber-getting for red ceder. However, by the 1950’s half of the agriculturalists were dairy farmers and there were also a few banana and fruit farmers[i]. One of these Banana farmers was George Chester, also known as the ‘Banana Case Baron’. He claimed to be the largest single banana producer in the Commonwealth, growing up to 35 tons per week. He also owned a sawmill in Pimpanan, where he would manufacture the banana cases and use the surplus timber to build new homes, largely in the suburb of Mt. Gravatt. He would become the first Brisbane’s sub-divider and home building[ii].Many of his workers were Italian migrants, who lived in rent free homes and arracks that he built for them[iii].


[i]https://www.adfas.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Upper20Coomera.pdf

[ii]http://indigojackson.tripod.com/webonmediacontents/Mr%20Edward%20(%20Ted%20)%20Chester%20of%20Queensland..pdf

 https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/49713306