Site 5

Wyllie Homestead Gate Posts

These posts, which stood at the former entrance to the Wyllie property, named ‘Riverleigh’, still stand near the western boundary of Mathieson Park. The driveway led to the Wyllie family’s large, low-level, timber and brick house.

Alexander Jackson Wyllie (1854-1934) purchased Sub. 2 of Portion 28 from Archibald Hamilton in 1883, the same year as his father’s death and his marriage to Margaret Amelia Cameron (1858-1921). The family grew to include three sons (one died in infancy) and three daughters. Wyllie was an active community member who served in local government between 1882 and 1921. He was heavily involved with the North Pine Presbyterian Church where he taught Sunday School for 51 years. Ring events of the Pine Rivers Agricultural, Horticultural and Industrial Association’s shows were held in the family paddocks before the establishment of the Lawnton Showgrounds. The Wyllie family left the property in 1940.

5a

Riverleigh, ca 1907.
Courtesy of the Wyllie family.
Moreton
Bay Region Libraries (Strathpine Library) P0054

Although it had been supposed that the building was constructed in the 1880s by the Wyllie family, new evidence has revealed that the house, which was demolished in the late 1940s, dated from the period of the first ownership of this land by Courtenay Hele Fowell Spry (1830-1909) in 1862. Spry purchased the farm allotments adjoining the reserve, (Portion 32 to the west and Portion 28 to the east), as well as a considerable amount of other land in the district, becoming an extensive landowner who had initially purchased much more freehold land than Tom Petrie. The house was made of Cedar, Beech and hand-made bricks. Descendants of the Spry family have recalled stories of the Aborigines holding corroborees on the banks of the North Pine River and of grandmother Spry and her servants, armed with a gun, keeping attackers at bay when the men were away.

5b

 Alexander Jackson Wyllie and Margaret Amelia, nee Cameron.
Courtesy of Alan Meek.
Moreton
Bay Region Libraries (Strathpine Library) P2140/8