The origins of Allora 1827 to 2012.
Allan Cunningham, explorer and botanist, set out to explore the North and North-Western portions of New South Wales from Sydney on April 30 1827. On June 5 the party arrived at a small river he named the "Condamine River," after Mr.T.de la Condamine, the aide-de-camp to the Governor of N.S.W. Searching for a way through the ranges to Moreton Bay, they discovered several watercourses that all emptied into the Condamine River. After naming several places such as Canning Downs, Darling Downs (named after the then Governor Darling), Freestone Creek, Miller's Valley, Harris Range, Peel's Plains, Glengallan Valley and others. Cunningham began his return journey on June 16 and arrived back at Sydney on July 28th. He had explored in all 800 miles of land.
13 years later a squatter named Patrick Leslie, accompanied by his close friend and assigned convict servant Peter Murphy, arrived at what it now called North Toolburra (Tulburra) in March 1840. He followed the Condamine River to Toolburra (Tulburra), then upstream to Canning Downs where he crossed to Glengallan Creek. His brother Walter Leslie followed behind with two bullock wagon loads of supplies, and 22 assigned convicts herding a flock of sheep, and 10 saddle horses. Further behind was a friend Ernest Dalrymple who was driving a mob of cattle. Leaving the stock with the men at 'Leslie's Crossing' between Toolburra and Talgai. Patrick Leslie and Peter Murphy explored the countryside to the North and rode across country later known as Allora, Spring Creek, King's Creek, Hodgkin's Creek, and as far as Gowrie Creek. They were looking at the quality of the land for pasture and crops, plus places that following friends may be interested in claiming for leasehold. Although the country was good, they decided that nothing they had seen compared with Toolburra and Canning Downs. On July 2 they returned and set up their first station at Toolburra and also claimed Canning downs as leasehold properties for a fee of £10 per year, per property. They set up a homestead on Toolburra (Tulburra) and stocked Canning Downs with the sheep and cattle. Patrick Leslie then returned to Sydney and married Catherine (Kate) Macarthur, one of Hannibal Hawkins Macarthur's daughters, (Hannibal was a nephew of Captain John Macarthur) on September 9 1840, and brought her back to Toolburra Station. (His brother George later married another daughter in Emmerline). In 1841 the Leslie's sold Toolburra and moved onto Canning Downs. Tulburra was the name the Leslie's called the property, whilst everybody else called it Toolburra.
During Patrick Leslie's explorations of the Darling Downs with Peter Murphy, he had reserved properties for his friends who would follow. One of those was a property for Ernest Dalrymple. Pat Leslie wrote in August 1840 "I have a station next to ours for Ernest." Ernest Dalrymple took up the lease at Goomburra but still resided with the Leslies at Toolburra and later Canning Downs. The name Goomburra has a variety of origins. 1/. It was named after a shield cut from a Kurrajong tree by the "Fire Black" tribe of Aborigines. 2/. The local tribe (who also lived at Drayton) were the Gooneburra Tribe. 3/. Guneburra, which may well have been the incorrect or illegible handwriting of a Government agent. The stream running through the property was named Dalrymple Creek after Ernest. He stocked the property with cattle he had agisted on Canning Downs and continued to lease the land. On 1 July 1843 he took out a Depasturage Licence No#256 and Residential Licence dated September 1843 which states he was residing on Goomburra Station for the first time. However he suffered from 'Consumption' and took gravely ill. The property was sold to the North British Australian Company (NBA Coy) also known as the Aberdeen Company, for £300 in late 1843, with no stock or improvements. Yet Commissioner Rolleston inspected the property 14 November 1843, and stated in his report that there were 12 residents, 4 huts, 272 cattle, 18 horses and 2,340 sheep. They must have been moved to Canning Downs under the care of George Leslie. I write this because the Brisbane Courier reports 17 October 1846 that 356 cattle with calves at foot given in, were sold to Capt Wickham for £1 a head, account Ernest Dalrymple. Ernest Dalrymple died in Brisbane on 4 November 1844.
Please continue next page "Allora Origins 2."
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