Explore Queensland history in journals and magazines

Are you looking for a specific Queensland topic you cannot find covered in the familiar sources? Research Librarian Stephanie shares three journals, including what they cover and how to access them to open up aspects of Queensland history that interest you.

Queensland History Journal by the Royal Historical Society of Queensland 1915 –

Since its inception, the Queensland History Journal has been a quality source of researched, referenced articles on a range of Queensland topics. The journal has changed its name over time but it’s possible to see a list of all the articles with a regularly updated online index at the society’s website.

The Johnston index to the Royal Historical Society of Queensland journal 1913-1983, in hard copy, takes a more subject-based approach. Contents, such as war themes, express the interests of the time while reflecting a diversity of views about people, places and events. Coverage includes:

  • health
  • education
  • exploration
  • immigration
  • transport
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • diverse ethnic groups
  • architecture
  • economic and political concerns
  • landscape and the environment

More contentious issues of Queensland history, such as those surrounding the history of the Mayne family or the role of the Native Mounted Police, are also included.  Text Queensland has digitised the journals up to 1994, which can be accessed via a search box. State Library members can connect via the One Search catalogue and read the journal online. It is also in hard copy on Level 4, where it can be ordered out for viewing onsite.

The Architecture & Building Journal of Queensland 1922-1972 published by J V D Coutts and Allan Young, then solely by Coutts

Architecture & Building Journal of Queensland, 10 May 1929, p 46

Later known as Architecture, Building, Engineering, this magazine introduced into Queensland information on, and illustrations of, buildings and architecture as well as the allied trades relevant to Queensland.

It was the era of new products, such as tiled roofs, fibrolite sheeting and stucco, as well as new ways with stained glass. It explored various housing styles from the English Tudor and Georgian to American Spanish Mission, while still trying to design the cool house of cross ventilation and generous windows. Built-in cupboards and furniture and flats were also changing the way Queenslanders lived in compact homes. Architects, builders and tradesmen put their work on display in this journal.  

Cards in drawers on Level 4, in three series: buildings, personalities and associated groups, provide a guide to some of the contents. State Library holds these monthly magazines, which have not been digitised, on microfilm, on open access on Level 3, where they can be viewed and copied if required.

Cummins & Campbell’s Monthly Magazine for education and amusement 1925-1957

John Cummins and Aylmer Campbell, wine, spirits and general merchants, had their head office in Flinders Street, Townsville, and by the mid-1920s the company had branch offices and agencies throughout the north. The magazines advertised their merchandise and provided history on the top end when there were few other sources, carrying the flavour of northern life to readers. Photographs of people and places, essays on northern industries, personalities and the history of the factors that shaped the area held the mirror up, in a style that was engaging and light, to those who saw northern Queensland as different.

A section, Nutshell biographies, picked up on some of the less famous, interesting characters. The magazines have not been digitised and can be ordered and read on Level 4, where there is also an index of the contents in a card catalogue. See more of the magazines in 50 treasures: celebrating 50 years of James Cook University. Read the blog on the Collinson Index to get an idea of its contents.

These are a few of the many magazines and journals State Library of Queensland holds on Queensland. As Queensland is the specialty of the Library, it is worth exploring any topic in relation to the State whether it is sport, craft, community and church groups, to find something of interest to you. Explore the catalogue, One Search. You may be surprised at what’s online, including documents, images, maps, books or magazines and journals.

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