History of Landsborough Museum

Learn about the history of the Landsborough Museum

History of Landsborough Museum
Henry Dyer's Pioneer Store, Landsborough, ca 1890. Picture Sunshine Coast.


The historic 1924 Landsborough Shire Council Chambers is a state heritage-listed building. The museum showcases the history of our region’s local government, and artefacts offer an insight into the lives of early pioneers. Changing exhibitions celebrate important events that had an impact on the town. Rare collection pieces include three Dead Man's Pennies and a working printing press. The museum features an exhibition space, research area, book shop and meeting room.


The first European settlement was established in Landsborough, originally known as Mellum Creek, by Isaac Burgess in 1871. His slab hut on the north of Gympie Road near Mellum Creek became a Cobb & Co. staging post on the run to the Gympie gold fields. Settlement of the area expanded particularly with the arrival of the rail line from Caboolture in 1890. Named Landsborough after the explorer William Landsborough, the Railway Station became the focus for a town centre and the town of Mellum Creek was renamed Landsborough.

Local government for the region was administered by the Caboolture Divisional Board from 1880. The Caboolture Shire, proclaimed in 1903, assumed responsibility for the administration of the regions of Pine Rivers, Landsborough, Kilcoy, Maroochy, Caboolture and Redcliffe. In February 1912, 423 acres were annexed from Caboolture Shire and proclaimed Landsborough Shire. The first Council meeting for the newly formed Shire was held on 20 April 1912. A Council residence and one room office was constructed in 1913 and was used for meetings of the Council until the first purpose-built Chambers was opened in 1924.

The former Landsborough Shire Council Chambers, designed by architect Walter Carey Voller and constructed by AE Round, accommodated a council chamber, two offices, a counter with office space and a walk-in strong room.

WC Voller served his articles under FDG Stanley from 1882 to 1886 and from 1893 operated a productive architectural practice in Brisbane. His most notable work includes St Paul's Presbyterian Church Mackay (1898), St Paul's Church of England Roma (1913), New Farm Methodist Church (1926) and Silkstone Baptist Church (1928). He owned a beach house at Caloundra and he and his family were frequent visitors and well known in the area.

In 1967 Landsborough, Maroochy and Noosa Shires became known as the Sunshine Coast and local government administration was located to Caloundra in 1968. The former Landsborough Shire Council Chambers closed in 1974. In 1976 the Landsborough Historical Society secured a lease over the building and in 1975 the building was opened as the Landsborough Shire Historical Museum.

During the 1950s the verandah was extended and enclosed to the east and an extension constructed to the west of the building to accommodate five offices. In 1977 the original timber fence was removed, and a bullock wagon and two large palms located in the front garden. In 1988, alterations to the former Landsborough Shire Chambers were undertaken during the construction of the large Museum extension to the west. An old council shed was renovated, and this extension clad in rammed-earth. The front verandah was reinstated, office partitioning removed, the building painted, and a new roof installed. A covered courtyard link between the early building and the new Museum extension and a roofed storage area to the north butt directly onto the building.

Reference: Queensland Heritage Register

Landsborough timeline

  • Pre 1871 Indigenous occupation
  • 1871 Cobb and Co slab hut erected at Mellum Creek for stop overs
  • 1877 Early white settlement period. Isaac Burgess buys land in Mellum Creek
  • 1888 Mellum Creek Hotel opens
  • 1886 Henry Dyer moves to town
  • 1899 Police station opens
  • 1890 Industrial period. Railway opens Landsborough becomes goods and transit hub of the region
  • 1892 Methodist church erected
  • 1893 First sawmill in town opens and school opens
  • 1900s Refreshment rooms open
  • 1912 Golden age of Landsborough. Landsborough becomes governmental capital of shire with John Tytherleigh first Chairman
  • 1914 Cribb Street formed. Hotel moved to Cribb Street from Mellum Creek
  • 1924 Shire Chambers and School of Arts built
  • 1931 Methodist Church moved
  • 1930s – 1950s Decline. Timber runs dry, mills close, bananas and citrus decline, highway opens, road to Caloundra opens to vehicle transport rivalling train travel and transport.
  • 1950s – 1960s Road transport overtakes rail, rail declines
  • 1968 Council relocates to Caloundra
  • 1971 Refreshment rooms close 1980s – Present Day Revival. Residential real estate drives town growth. Train station resumes importance as major commuter thoroughfare.

Reference: POMO (2019) Landsborough Place Themes. Sunshine Coast Council.