German immigration from the 1840s to the present has had a significant influence on Queensland history and culture. Yet only traces of German heritage remain in our public collections and a comprehensive history is yet to be written. Anna Haebich and Mark Schuster discuss the reasons for this absence and describe some of the significant heritage that has survived. Notable is Mark’s private collection of German musical heritage and other items from the Toowomba region. Ways to preserve and promote Queensland’s German heritage will also be addressed.
After the lecture I went up to the John Oxley Library to see the photo album given to the immigration agent, Heussler, in 1897 on the occasion of his return to Germany. It features rare photos of Brisbane and Spring Hill. Each page is beautifully decorated with watercolour ferns, flowers, fishing scenes, etc, and at intervals there are watercolour paintings of scenes from South East Queensland such as Cleveland harbour. As soon as I donned the gloves I knew this was going to be a very special experience and I was not disappointed.