Four Men, Two Ox and a Dray

a whimsical narrative of Cunningham’s 1829 quest to find the source of the Brisbane River

“In May 1829, Cunningham returned to Queensland, and in a tour of six weeks’ duration carried out further explorations. Having crossed the plain to the north-west, Cunningham arrived at the Limestone Hills (Ipswich), where he found the provisions that he had demanded from the Commissariat. They had been brought by boat under charge of one of Cunningham's servants and he now had his establishment to two bullocks, a driver, and two servants. In this journey, he fixed the situation of Hay’s Peak [Mount Davidson], a conical, densely wooded mountain in 27°36′ S. and 152°8′ E. (near Toowoomba), and he “traced the principal branch of the Brisbane River as far N. as 26°25′ S., until its channel assumed merely the character of a chain of very shallow stagnant pools.” Now, he reached Lister’s Peak in 26°52′ S. This formed the most northerly point of his discoveries. “The Explorers of Moreton Bay 1770-1830. J.G. Steele

Lister’s Peak is approximately halfway between the townships of Moore and Linville on the Eastern side of the road. The map below traces Cunningham’s journey to Lister’s Peak in 1829.

This Exhibition is a whimsical interpretation of Cunningham’s Journal and the events described.