The Normal School

The Normal School was established as the National School in April 1860 and operated on a mixed basis until the opening of a building for boys in December 1862.  The original building was designed by Christopher Porter with construction undertaken by Andrew Petrie.

Normal School, Brisbane, ca. 1885. Image number 61087

Christopher Porter had arrived in Brisbane in 1860 and was invited by the Queensland Board of Education to tender for the position as the Board’s first general architect.  The buildings were demolished in 1927/8 to make way for new government offices erected around Anzac Square on the corner of Adelaide and Edward Streets.  The name “Normal” as used at the time indicated that the school operated on a non-denomination basis.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.
We also welcome direct feedback via Contact Us.
You may also want to ask our librarians.

My great-grandmother - Sabina Hutchinson - was said to be a teacher at what I assume to be the Normal School. (Her headstone states: "founder teacher at infant school, Spring Hill, 1862 - 1865").
Hoping you can assist in my search for information.
Lenore Aldred

The contract for the Normal School was originally awarded to Petrie's company but later, after protest, was awarded to the lowest tenderer, James Teevan.
Teevan's complaint about the tenders in early 1861:
And in July 1862:
"The Brisbane Normal School, an edifice which presents a very imposing appearance, is rapidly approaching completion, and the builder, Mr. Teevan, has certainly maintained his reputation by the manner in which he has put up the building. Mr. C. Porter is the architect."