On a warm Saturday morning in February 1994, Brisbane City Councillor, David Hinchliffe organised a walk around New Farm visiting some historical sites.
The forty people who gathered at Holy Spirit School, including Peter Beattie, MLA, and Alderman Beattie Dawson (1973-76), were invited to contribute to the knowledge of the sites visited on the walk. Jan Power spoke on ‘Early New Farm Days’. As Councillor Hinchliffe thanked all for attending, he suggested that New Farm was “an interesting place in need of a recorded history from its beginning as a convict farm to today’s multicultural village”. His suggestion to establish a committee to ‘Research and Record the History of New Farm’ led to action soon after and the inaugural meeting of the Society was held on June 18, 1994.
From these small beginnings, the New Farm and Districts Historical Society has become an Incorporated Association and in 2017 has almost 200 members and a contact list of about 700 interested people.
Public Meetings – 52 Merthyr Rd, New Farm
The Society holds public meetings at 2 pm on the 4th Saturday of each month (February to November) when guest presenters speak on a variety of topics that inform and inspire and are relevant to the history of the area or greater Brisbane. Afternoon tea brings the opportunity to meet up with friends old and new. These meetings are held at the Merthyr Road Uniting Church Centre, 52 Merthyr Road, New Farm. There are usually 75 to 100 members and interested friends attending each meeting and everyone is welcome.
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Where is the historical information stored?
The Brisbane City Council has provided a small office for the Society attached to the Ron Muir Room, next to the New Farm Library at 135 Sydney Street, New Farm.
Historical information is kept in the archives in the office.
Several members of the Society meet every Thursday afternoon at 2pm (Christmas holidays excluded) at the office and are available for members of the public to come in and search for historical information.
The office is open from 2pm until 4pm each Thursday afternoon, February to November.