Stanthorpe in 1922

Mine at Stanthorpe, ca. 1922. Source: QldPics.

The following happened in Stanthorpe during 1922:

Stanthorpe Shire Council building was opened in 1922, although it was built in 1914. There were no celebrations held during the war. The official opening was performed by the Governor of Queensland Sir Matthew Nathan. It was also the 50th Jubilee of Stanthorpe in 1922. Councillors photographed from the back left to right: J. P. Halloran, W. H. Salisbury, L. R. McBeth, J. W. Luke, John Gordon. Front left to right: R. B. Lawson, M. J. O’Mara, Sir Matthew Nathan (Governor of Queensland), T. J. Ballinger, Miss Anne Shelford (Shire Clerk) and Alf Glover.

The Reality Development Company, though not a success in itself, did bring facilities to Glen Aplin, which may have been much slower in coming without it. It was the brainchild of Mr Penny, designed on American style, and actually a very early concept of modern land development schemes. A small township grew with an hostel, with hot and cold water, septic and its own generator for lighting, rare conveniences in those early days. George Heaven and Christensen built the hostel of hundredweight cement blocks, manufactured down at the river, near the later bridge site, and carted in a horse and dray by Mr Commerford. Mr Frank Fielder was manager of the hostel and the scheme and auctioned the blocks. He also took over the butcher’s shop and built a store managed by J.A. Browne and Joe Allison respectively, the stores being the nucleus of the township to be. Tennis courts and a golf course were laid out, and in use for a number of years. As added encouragement, orchard blocks were cleared and 2 hectares planted – and advertised as going concerns. For a small fee, a service was offered, of caring for the orchard by the Reality Company until it came into production, then to be taken over by the owner – such grand plans did not bear fruit. Penny may not have been a success story in Glen Aplin, but he improved standards, and success came his way in the birth of chain stores which bore his name.

The Hostel was full of scientists from various parts of the world for viewing the total eclipse on 21 September 1922. It was so effective that fowls went to roost and cows came home for milking in the mid-afternoon. Apart from the eclipse being total, it was hoped also to provide an opportunity for testing the validity of Einstein’s “Theory of Relativity”.