Print of the Brisbane River donated by the Mackay Historical Society

During the recent John Oxley Library's white gloves tour to Mackay and region, the Mackay Historical Society donated a print depicting the Hamilton Reach of the Brisbane River.

   Brian Randall of the John Oxley Library receiving the work from the Mackay Historical Society's Margaret Tyerman.

 Hand-coloured print depicting the Hamilton Reach of the Brisbane River

This had been given to the Mackay Historical Society previously and fell outside of its collection parameters. 

We thank the society and are grateful for this donation.  It will be a valued addition to our collections.


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the house in the right hand side of the picture is still is called spring cottage and is located at 40 crescent rd in Hamilton.and now is one of the oldest surviving houses in Brisbane

Thankyou so much for notifying us of this. Much appreciated!

HiThis is a print or a copy of a print of Frederick B Schell's original painting, or wood engraving (done from the painting) of Hamilton Reach. This was painted in 1885 or 1886 for the Picturesque Atlas of Australasia published in 1888 to commemorate the anniversary of white settlement of Australia (really 100 years since the establishment of the Colony of New South Wales). See this picture in this book: Susanna Evans, Historic Brisbane and its Early Artists, Boolarong 1982, p 83.The original paintings for the Atlas were auctioned in the late 1880s or 1890s (see the newspaper advertisement for the auction in the NLA digital newspaper collection).In 1982, according to Evans, the original of this wood engraving or painting was in a private collection (name of owners of this private collection in 1982 given in Evans). These private owners also appeared to have other Schell engravings or paintings.The signature on the digital copy of the print donated by Mackay Historical Society seems identical to the signature of the copy of the wood engraving in the Evans book ie "Fred. B Schell"Strangely, Frederick B Schell. an American who was the Art Editor of the Atlas, used a very different signature on some of his other paintings and wood engravings in the same collection ie FB Schell with the F and B written over the top of the S.