Sunday, April 17, 2016

BHBR 21.1 Early Settlers of Bracken Ridge Charles Thomas Slaughter.

Many of the streets around Bracken Ridge have been named in honour of some of the original settlers.

Following their lives through historical facts provides a snapshot of their lives..  His name was Charles Thomas Slaughter.

His father was Alfred Slaughter, and he was the first Postmaster at Sandgate.
Charles was appointed upon the death of his father.  

Australia, Commonwealth Public Service Lists, 1904, 1920 for CT Slaughter he commenced employment with the Post Office on st March 1871, and in 1904 he was the Officer in Charge at One Mile earning 250 pounds per year.

In 1872 in the Queensland Blue Book he was listed as a Telegraph Operator       

Civil Service - Queensland Blue Book document

  • State: Queensland
  • Publication year: 1872
  • Page number: 17
  • Publication title: Queensland Blue Book 1872
  • Category: Education & work
  • Subcategory: Civil service
  • Collections from   Australia & New Zealand

Mr Slaughter had a long career with the Post Office, as the following records reveal.  He travelled the length of Queensland, before choosing Brackenridge as the place for his retirement.

     Queensland and Victoria, Australian Directories, 1859-1947 for C Slaughter    

In 1874 he was a Telegraph Operator at Sandgate,  Alfred Slaughter was the Postmaster Sandgate
In 1887 he was  Post Master Eagle Terrace 
In 1889  he was Post Master Rainbow Street 
In 1889  he was Post Master at Post Office St Sandgate
In 1892  he was Post Master at Sandgate
In 1894 he was the Postmaster at Cairns  
In 1895  he was Post Master at Sandgate
In 1896 he was at Rainbow Street Sandgate
In 1900  he was at One Mile
In 1901  he was at One Mile Gympie
In 1902  he was Post Master at One Mile Gympie
In 1903  he was Post Master at One Mile Gympie
In 1904  he was Post Master at One Mile
In 1905  he was Post Master at One Mile Gympie
 In 1907 he was at Wooloongabba
In 1911 at Port Douglas as P.M

 In 1913 He was listed as being in Pastoral and Agriculture - Zillmere area.

When Alfred Slaughter was the post master in Sandgate  his daughter was married at his home.

The Brisbane Courier (Qld. : 1864-1933) - Tuesday 29 September 1868 p.2

DE FRAINE-SLAUGHTER.-On the 25th September, at the residence of the father of the bride, by the Rev. Henry Woodhouse, William Thomas de Fraine of Brisbane, to Elizabeth Angelina, youngest daughter of Mr. Alfred Slaughter, jun., Postmaster, Sandgate.

The Qld Births Deaths and Marriages record  Slaughter deaths

1873B7981AlfredSlaughterRichard Slaughter Elizabeth Hyder

1887C1811ThomasSlaughterRichard Slaughter Elizabeth Hyder


Charles Thomas Slaughter
Polly Girling married Charles Slaughter

Charles Thomas Slaughter and Mary Ann Girling were married 16th May 1881.

Charles Thomas Slaughter
Spouse Name:Mary Ann Girling
Marriage Date:16 May 1881
Marriage Place:Queensland
Registration Place:Queensland
Registration Year:1881

They had the following children:

Esther Catherine Slaughter          1883
Reginald Charles Slaughter         1885
Gladys May Slaughter                1887
Vivian Herbert Slaughter            1889
Nellie Slaughter                         1892
Frank Roy Slaughter                  1895
Charles Deagon Slaughter           1904
Herbert Stockwell Slaughter        1907

No doubt the various moves around Queensland were difficult for both Charles and Mary Ann.

They proudly celebrated their Golden Wedding  

Brisbane Courier (Qld. : 1864 - 1933), Saturday 16 May 1931, page 20

Mary Ann Girling was the daughter of William Baker Girling  and Catherine Ann Deagon.

The Deagon name is well known, and it was named after Catherine Ann Deagon's father, William.

There is excellent information in a booklet written to commemorate the life of Catherine's niece, May Irene Ormiston, daughter of Lucy Jane Deagon and David Joseph Childs.  Another pioneering family.


Sandgate Post Office

The building opened as a post and telegraph office on 7 May 1887, with residential accommodation for the postmaster on the first floor, a dining room, post and telegraph offices and public area on the ground floor and a detached service wing housing kitchen, servant's quarters and wash house. The exterior brickwork was colour-washed originally, but has been painted since 1894.
The layout was innovative, the central public area with an entrance porch either side becoming a principal feature of late 19th and early 20th century Queensland post offices. Along with post and telegraph offices constructed at the important commercial centres of Fortitude Valley (1887) and South Brisbane (1889-90) it was one of only three substantial, two-storeyed brick post offices constructed in metropolitan Brisbane in the late 19th century. 

The Woolloongabba Post Office, also a substantial two-storeyed brick building, was erected in 1905. It was designed by the Queensland Government Architect's office for the Commonwealth government, which had assumed responsibility for post and telegraph communication following the federation of the Australian colonies on 1 January 1901.
A telephone service was established in the Sandgate Post and Telegraph Office in 1898 and a telephone exchange was installed in 1907.

The Sandgate Council, which operated from 1880 to 1924, had to provide a range of services for the growing community.These included a fire department, ambulance, and sanitation facilities, as well as maintaining roads and regulating local development. In 1925 Sandgate Council was amalgamated into the City of Brisbane.


Charles Slaughter

Charles Thomas Slaughter was born in Queensland on 6th January 1855

He married in 1881 Mary Ann Girling, and he died 25th September 1933.

His father was Alfred Slaughter the son of Thomas Slaughter

In 1903 Charles and Mary were  living at the One Mile Post Office, at 11 Graham St Gympie.

In 1908 they were living at the Woolloongabba Post Office

Slaughter, Charles Thomas, d. 26 Sep 1933, age 78yr, [JT]
Slaughter, Mary Ann, d. 26 Oct 1931, age 72yr, s/w Charles, [JT]

Once again often the old-timers are the ones who have the best stories to tell.

This transcription is from 1932


Among the earliest recorded settlers in the Sandgate district were Messrs. A. Slaughter, J. Louden, and -. Davey. Mr. A. Slaughter was Sandgate's first postmaster 70 years ago.

His son, Mr. C. T. Slaughter, hale and healthy despite advanced years, is to-day farming at Wahroonga, Bracken Ridge, and from his storehouse of memory he recalled many interesting experiences of those early days, when mangrove trees stretched from where the Baptist Church now stands to the Pine River, when horses had to swim across with the mails for Brisbane at the head of Cabbage Tree Creek, long before the days of bridges and bituminised roads.

 Mr. Slaughter took over the charge of Sandgate's first telegraph office at the age of 16, and he remembers, as if it were yesterday, the day when the first telegram for Brisbane from Sandgate was handed in to him to send flashing over the wire by the late Mr Alexander Stewart. Timber for building was brought down from Brisbane by drays, which frequently became bogged over the soft stretch between Nundah and Sandgate-a stretch over which motorists now speed at 40 miles an hour. Frequently, Mr. Slaughter had to take a horse and help the drays out of the bog. 

The Slaughter, Louden, and Davey families owned a rowing boat, and every week the long pull used to be made to Brisbane to obtain the weekly supplies. Mr. Slaughter recalled that his father possessed a splendid little Arab pony, of uncanny intelligence, in times of sickness it was the messenger between Dr. Hobbs-the same character mentioned by Bartley-and the settlement The required medicine would be tied to the pony's neck, and the faithful animal never failed to return to his stable with the needed supplies.

 Mr. Slaughter remarked with a chuckle: "He would only let a woman catch him. If none of the female members of the household were about one of us always had to disguise himself with a skirt before he could get near enough to catch the pony."


Mr. Slaughter had many experiences with the blacks, who were then very numerous. Louden, who built Sandgate's first hotel on Eagle Terrace, a building that has vanished these many decades, was a rather  eccentric person, animated with a profound mistrust of the blacks. When blacks were in the district he would retire into a strongly-built shed, whose thick walls had been loop-holed, and blaze away with powder and ball at every black that came within fifty yards of the building.

Opposite where the Catholic Church now stands was the encampment of the black troopers under Lieutenant Wheeler. They were armed with car bines and well-mounted, their horses being kept in a paddock at the back of their bark huts

Mr. Slaughter vividly remembers a day when a number of quite harmless blacks, rowing a big whale boat which had been given them by the late Mr. Tom Petrie, landed on the beach near Brighton. With a yell, the black troopers charged down on them, galloping madly over the beach, firing their carbines, and the poor blacks tumbled back into the boat, and got out of range with astonishing rapidity. On another occasion, a black gin, screaming with fear, rushed into the Slaughters' house, seeking refuge from an enraged trooper who was chasing her blandishing a tomahawk and uttered blood-curdling threats

 "Where my gin? I kill him that pfeller" demanded the trooper, but the woman was securely hidden, and the Slaughters sent the black packing with his vengeance unfulfilled. One evening as Mr. Slaughter had finished his work at the little Post Office and was walking home he saw as many as 300 blacks on the beach, fearsomely painted and bedaubed, preparing for a corroboree.

On another occasion he witnessed a tribal mourning ceremony The blacks sat in a large circle, and passed from hand to hand a shell containing some liquid, the ceremony of imbibing being punctuated with doleful howls. On inquiring the reason he was told that "one pfeller he die along Durundur."

Mr. Slaughter's only memory of the historic day when the railway line was officially opened is the recollection of the quaint-looking little locomotive puffing importantly into the little platform, emitting volumes of smoke and steam, with Messrs. Geo. Bashford, W. Deagon, and W. S. Cooksley clinging on to the tender with one hand, while they frantically waved their hats with the other; and the subsequent joyous celebration at the Osborne Hotel, when a red-letter day was toasted in generous draughts.

Mr. Slaughter was married in one of Mr. Deagon's cottages, named Dunstable, next to Myola Flats, once Jordan cottage, where Governor Bowen stayed when on holiday at Sandgate.


In the 'seventies and the 'eighties Sandgate made remarkable progress. The little town grew into a fine residential area. The swamps were filled in, the cotton trees disappeared one by one, and the belt of forest gave place to smiling farm lands. Sandgate was proclaimed a town on April 29, 1880, having formerly been a part of the old shire of Nundah.

As a separate entity in a local authority sense it went out of existence in October, 1925, when it became a part of the Greater Brisbane area. Considerable historic interest surrounds the estab-lishment of the Anglican Church in Sandgate The first movement for a church on record was a meeting in October, 1874, with the Chief Justice, Sir James Cockle, in the chair, and the original church of St Nicolas was opened in December, 1880. St. Nicolas Church has the distinction of possessing the first church bell ever rung in Brisbane.

 It was used when Brisbane's Anglican Church was little more than a bark humpy, and it still calls the worshippers to matins and evensong. Equal interest attaches to the establishment of St Margaret's Anglican Church. The original church, which was built in the late 'nineties, now forms part of the rectory. The foundation stone was laid on August 9, 1891, by Walter Barrett, Mayor of Sandgate. 

The "foundation stone" is actually one of the stumps at the north-east corner of the building It did not occur to those responsible for the erection of the handsome brick church in 1926 to incorporate this pillar in the new building. The stone which the builders rejected, is still to be seen under the rectory. But at the rear of the rectory, on the edge of the garden, is a still more interesting relic of by-gone Sandgate-the fine monument erected over the graves of Robert Travers Atkin and his sister, Miss Grace Atkin.

Years of wind and rain have rendered the inscription almost indecipherable in places, but the monument, surmounted by a broken column, is in a fine state of preservation, and is cared for by the rector, the Rev. A. M'D. Hassel, and Mrs. Hassell.  Mr Hassell smilingly observed "Visitors coming out of the back door into the garden get quite a start when they find themselves face to face with the monument." Robert Travers Atkin, a fine type of Irish gentleman, represented the Bulimba electorate in the 'seventies He frequently visited Sandgate, and loved to sit on the hill to enjoy the sight of the sea. In his will he asked to be buried there, leaving £50 towards the cost of a church near his grave He died on May 25, 1872, and a monument was erected by the Hibernian Society of Queensland. 

Charles and Mary Ann and their family - Life at Bracken Ridge

From various newspaper reports of the day, Fred Slaughter had lost some ponies.  He advertised for quite some time for information.  c 1913

 They shared their early life at Bracken Ridge on the pineapple farm with their children.

In 1913 certificate number 15975 from Queensland Brands Directory was allocated to Charles Slaughter of Sandgate.

Frank Roy Slaughter joined the AIF in 1915 aged 20 years.  He returned to Australia on the "Eurepides" in 1919.  S/N 14720.  Frank married Dorothy Evelyn Little in 1921

Reginald Charles Slaughter enlisted in World War 1 in April 1916.  He was a Post Master, and aged 31 years when he joined and served on the Western Front. He returned to Australia in 1919.

Then in 1919 Mrs Slaughter received good news, her son was coming home. Wednesday 15 January 1919 Frank Slaughter coming home (too difficult to photo)   He had been enlisted in WW1

In the 1922 Census records the following were living at Gladeville Farm

Then in 1926, Daphne Slaughter was guest at a Christmas Party.

Nellie Slaughter  b 1892 married Herbert Clark Kennedy in 1920 died 1975
Vivian Herbert Slaughter b 1888  married Evelyn Constance Craig in 1917 
                                                    and he died 1974
Esther Catherine Slaughter died 1956
Herbert Stockwell Slaughter b 1907  died 1948

Gladys May  b  1887
Nellie Slaughter  b  1892
Charles Deagon Slaughter b 1904
Herbert Stockwell Slaughter 1907

Some photos of the family include, Gladys, and Fred among the pineapples.

Summary: Gladys Slaughter and friend at 'Gladville' (house), ca. 1919. The Slaughters were early farmers at Brackenridge, Brisbane (Description supplied with photograph). The women fill a watercan from a pump in a pineapple field.                    Queensland State Library Archives


Queensland State Archives Item ID 846743 61/712

Lieutenant Wheeler was a busy man

Reports from Lieutenant Frederick Wheeler of the Native Police in relation to Aborigines found murdered at Coochin, Fassifern after a patrol by Lieutenant Wheeler and his Troopers [see also 846742 - 61/359 and 846742 - 61/435]. Wheeler’s report advises that he was informed by Mr Hardie that the Aborigines were killing his cattle and after dispersing the Aborigines on the Dunandun Run. “I went to Fassifern through the same [terms?] tracking them all the way, came upon their camps, and dispersed them. In doing this I have simply performed my duty, the complaints that I received from different squatters warranted me in the discharge thereof”. [M/film Z5595]

Report from Lieutenant Frederick Wheeler at Sandgate dated July 16, 1861 advising that a large war party of Aborigines came over from the Richmond and Clarence River district and “attacked a shepherd's hut at Mt Flinders, drove the Dugundan blacks up to the head of the station ... when I arrived at Maroon they had already split and retired to their own country but I expect them back in 3 or 4 weeks as they have not been able to avenge the death of several of their tribe inflicted at the hands of the Telemon blacks two months ago”. [M/film Z5602]

Lieut Wheeler travelled the length and breadth of Qld a very busy man in his role with the Native Police

Photographs of the Slaughter Family are stored at the State Library of Queensland Collection.

Special thanks must go to the members of the Slaughter Family who donated them

For Desley Stabe, a special Bracken Ridge lady, who for years was the Dancing Teacher.  So many memories and wonderful times that were shared by all the mums.  Friendships were made, and the girls "loved" Desley as their teacher. 

My personal memories are of the costumes that we had to make, and being roused on by Miss Sapsford, because the hems were an inch to short or long!

Who can believe we are now Grandparents, watching our grand-daughters perform in the next generation of dancers!

Thank you also to Doug Stabe for his assistance.  Another descendant of early settlers!

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