Meet Mr Brisbane
Sir Thomas Brisbane actually, the man after whom our fair city is named. While we celebrate Brisbane City’s 150th birthday we thought you might be interested to know who he was.
Sir Thomas was Governor at the time John Oxley “discovered” Brisbane, becoming the first European to sail up-river from Moreton Bay. Oxley respectfully named the river after his boss Brisbane.
The emerging city was initally named “Edenglassie”, favoured by the Chief Justice after his own family estate in Scotland. But over time it was dropped for Brisbane Town.
Thank goodness – not sure I’d have wanted to be called an ‘Edenglassian’.
Sir Thomas sounds like a decent bloke. Also a Scot he was a soldier and astronomer, born in 1773 and became Governor in 1821. He took some impressive steps in encouraging property development in the colony. He sold off Crown land at 5s per acre, demanding that settlers improve their holdings by investing their own capital.
Brisbane reduced corporal punishment and stayed the execution of many condemned to death. Proving what a 19th century ‘snag’ he really was he even took his wife’s maiden name as his own middle name!
There’s some good online biographies if you want to read more.