State Library of Queensland has an extensive collection of historical maps of Queensland, some of which have been digitised and can be viewed online.
This 1863 map from State Library of Queensland’s collection details the city of Brisbane, including parts of Spring Hill, South Brisbane and Kangaroo Point. It was drawn by cartographers Thomas Ham and Co. and published by J.W. Buxton. The map provides a directory allowing the user to easily locate businesses, government buildings, churches and other landmarks.
At the time of its release the map was commended by the Brisbane Courier in a brief article on July 30, 1863 –
“As a work of art it reflects great credit upon the lithographers, Messrs T. Ham and Co., of George Street, and as a map for reference we can confidently recommend it… As it is published at a low price, it is only reasonable to expect that the new map will find its way into every place of business in the city, more especially as it has been published at great expense by a Brisbane firm.”
A few familiar landmarks can be found on the map, such as the sites of the Botanic Gardens, Old Government House and the Observatory on Wickham Terrace.
You can view a digitised version of Ham’s map of the city of Brisbane via our One Search catalogue.
Sadly many of Brisbane’s early locales have disappeared as our cityscape has grown, however State Library of Queensland’s extensive collection of historical photographs allows you a glimpse back into our past.
Myles Sinnamon Project Coordinator, State Library of Queensland