Photo of the week - a hotel with a story

This week's photo of the week from SLQ’s Flickr Commons Photo of the week 2013 set is Pennington's Isisford Hotel taken around 1912.

Isisford is a small rural town and formerly a shire in Queensland's central west. Situated on the Barcoo River, the town is 100 km south-west of Longreach and 1160 km north-west of Brisbane. Queensland places (queenslandplaces.com.au/) quotes census figures for 1911 as 356 persons and in 2006- 262 persons.

This hotel is typical of the era consisting of two storeys – the upper having large wrap round roofed veranda with French doors leading from the rooms onto it. The pavement on the lower storey is protected by the veranda floor and roof and again has French doors leading into the hotel.

This photograph is also very similar (except for the cars) to an image held at the Museum of Victoria dated around 1910. In this image the name Stevenson’s is professionally painted above the main entrance, in the 1912 image the name Pennington is hand painted across the same place. The assumption being that sometime between 1910 and 1912 there was a change in ownership. You can see the Museum Victoria image here: museumvictoria.com.au/collections/items/766825/negative-g...

In 1923 disaster struck the hotel. The Longreach Leader carried a report in the Friday 8 June 1923 (p. 2) issue that 220 points of rain had fallen in the town followed by a hurricane and Pennington's Isisford Hotel had half the roof missing and the whole of the balcony, facing the main street, smashed and unroofed. Read about it here on Trove: nla.gov.au/nla.news-article39326592

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Leave a reply to tell your stories and experiences of country hotels. Every town has one!

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