Part 2 in a series of 3.
Back in the mid-1800’s the area around this town was just a small part of the land claimed by the founding (white) fathers of the area, The Archer Brothers. Their ‘run’ (or property) took in land for as far as the eye can see from a nearby hill, and beyond. They ran sheep, cattle and had a horse stud there, and it was regarded as one of the more affluent parts of the district, home to many of their staff and farm workers.
Local legend tells of one hapless old cow man who used to keep a number of loud and unruly dogs. He had trained the dogs to only take food from his own hand, and the locals often had bets down at the pub as to whether they could tempt his dogs with little treats. The dogs would never take a bite.
One day, the cow man and his dogs rode out to check on his charges. He was supposed to be gone overnight, but he never came back. Even today, the old locals swear that on certain nights when the moon is at it’s peak they hear the dogs growling and yapping as they return home to be fed.
We just found out that our old house was a key part of the Archer’s run back in the day. And the other night I swear I heard howling…
Nah, not really… I made that up.There’s no demon dogs, and no luckless cow man (that I know of, anyway). The part about the Archer Brothers is true though.
The Archer Brothers were explorers around the mid 1800’s. They discovered a good deal of Queensland, including the area around Brisbane and north to the Sunshine Coast, where they staked a claim to some of the most picturesque land in the state. After discovering this area however, they decided to settle and encouraged early settlement. They established the town of Rockhampton as a port town to send and receive goods and produce.
They claimed a total of around 900 square miles and the area was the home to some of the best dairy stock in the country. Their property contained various dairy sub-leases, thoroughbred studs, a butter factory (one of only 4 in the state), and many acres of fruits, the main earner in this immediate area being pineapples. The house we’re renting is between 120 and 150 years old, and (I think) was the homestead of one of the original dairy lease-holds. I need to research a little more, but it may well be the second oldest remaining house in town.
The towns of Rockhampton (largish), Yeppoon, Emu Park, Gracemere (and many smaller villages) are all built on land that once belonged to the Archer Brothers. The mountain range that overlooks Rockhampton is named Mt Archer, and many local sites bear the names of the various family members, properties and businesses. I believe some of their descendants still live in the area.
I got this effect just on dusk. I set the camera on a slow shutter speed and used the flash. Then I threw the stick for Jack and Cooper to chase. I like the way it turned out though… very ghostly.