MEMORIES: Commonwealth Bank in Warwick, 1932, next door to the Friendly Society Pharmacy.
MEMORIES: Commonwealth Bank in Warwick, 1932, next door to the Friendly Society Pharmacy. Queensland State Library

MEMORY LANE: Warwick's history laid bare on Facebook

TWO young Warwick men having a blue over a lady were swiftly put back in their place in Queensland's very last pistol duel, held right here in Warwick in about 1880.

The Craig family were the blacksmiths at the time and old Mr Craig decided he wanted to teach the men a lesson.

Constructing soap bullets for their pistols, he filled them with bullock blood.

The gentlemen lined up where the Horse and Jockey Hotel Motel stands now, pistols in hand.

One was shot and thought for sure he was done for, only to realise the blood staining his shirt was not his own and he had been the butt of a really big joke.

This is just one of the stories Warwick historian Leisa Lees has managed to uncover since starting the Facebook page Lost Warwick.

Leisa trawls through Trove archives, war museums and the Queensland State Library to uncover gems from the city's past.

Wedding notices, stories about buildings and old families get plucked out and shared on the social media page.

 

The wedding of Alma and Bert Clark, 1910. (From left) Mervyn (son of Heinrich [Harry]), Bertha Maynard; bride's brother Heinrich, bride Alma; small girl, daughter of Dagma. Bridegroom seated, Bert Clark.
The wedding of Alma and Bert Clark, 1910. (From left) Mervyn (son of Heinrich [Harry]), Bertha Maynard; bride's brother Heinrich, bride Alma; small girl, daughter of Dagma. Bridegroom seated, Bert Clark. Queensland State Library

Leisa herself is from a family of first settlers in Warwick and said many people came forward to tell her she had uncovered an unknown fact about their family.

"I love history and I just wanted to do it because no one had already done it," she said.

"Everyone's got their story."

The page was started in about August last year and has been embraced by the community.

 

Queenslander Pictorial supplement to The Queenslander December 11, 1915.
Queenslander Pictorial supplement to The Queenslander December 11, 1915. Robyn Kinne?

Leisa said she even knew of one woman who had signed her mother and grandmother up to Facebook so they could follow along.

But she has been surprised by the number of young people who are interested in the history.

"In Australian history, we're only getting more interest in the last 20 years," she said.

"Prior to that our grandparents were embarrassed they came from convict stock.

"But compiling a family tree is the fastest growing hobby, so it's an amazing thing to be involved with.

"It's incredible how they're connecting the dots through it all."

Leisa also set up a separate page, Lost Stanthorpe and Granite Belt, which has been very popular.

She sees it as a way to help other people learn about their own history and believes social media is a great way to share the stories with others.

Visit the Lost Warwick page on Facebook via this link.


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