Theodore is a small town in the Banana Shire in Central Queensland. It doesn’t offer many attractions, but is a good base to explore the surrounding area. Camping in the showgrounds with well looked after facilities is a cheap alternative to caravan parks.
Lesley’s family has roots in this area and we wanted to explore what we still could find about her ancestors.
Lesley’s great great great grandmother born Sophia Grantham later known as Kezia Tregilgus, a convict transported to Australia in 1841, built the first hotel, The Leichhardt, in Taroom in 1858 together with her partner John Tregilgus. Lesley’s brother, Barry Allan, has written a book about Sophia that explores her life from England to Tasmania, New Zealand and finally Queensland. The book is a good read for anybody interested in the early history of Australia. Sophia Grantham aka Kezia Tregilgus – can be downloaded from Smashwords for free.
Taroom is a nice country town set in the hilly countryside near the Dawson river.
Learn more about the significance of the Leichardt Tree here.
The local historical museum was closed when we arrived in Taroom. The noticeboard of the historical society gave a few phone numbers that could be contacted should the museum be closed. The first lady that Lesley rang was very willing to open the museum for us, provided we could pick her up from her home. We managed to follow the directions to her house and drove her back to the museum. The museum is housed in the old Catholic Church which was transported from the top of the hill in Taroom (from where the first photo on this post was taken) to give way to a modern church. It is a typical country museum with the usual mixture of items from the past.
We had lunch in the Leichhardt hotel in Taroom which stands on the spot the original hotel was built. I believe it is the third hotel in this spot.
The smell of the Jasmine at the entrance to the hotel was very strong.