Somerset Dam
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[Esk Scene]

Population 1150


The stream flowing through Esk was shown as Sandy Creek on Landsberg's 1860 map of South East Queensland but on an official map published in 1870 it appeared as Esk Creek.  A teamsters camp had become established when the main north road from Ipswich to Nanango crossed Esk Creek between Wivenhoe and Cressbrook.  A town was laid out at this site by Surveyor H.E. Blake in October, 1872.  Mining for copper had started at Biarra 14 kilometres to the west in 1872 and this activity had stimulated the opening of a hotel at Sandy (Esk) Creek.

The only building shown on a 1873 plan of the town is marked "Percy's".  This would have been the Glen Rock Accommodation house.  The new town was officially named Gallanani, apparently after a creek four kilometres to the north which flows into Esk Creek.  Gallanani is said to have been an Aboriginal name for 'Eastern Swamp Hen'.  The residents however never used the name Gallanani.  In the early years of settlement the town was referred to as Sandy Creek, Glenrock and more generally as Mount Esk.

The Mount Esk receiving office opened in 1873 and became a Post Office on 1st November 1875. The Mount Esk post office became the Esk post office in February 1881, the first official use of the name Esk which was becoming popularly accepted.  The Mount Esk state school opened in November 1875 and became the Esk state school in 1887.  The Lowood to Esk section of the Brisbane Valley Branch railway was opened in August 1886 and the railway station was known as Esk from the beginning.

The survey office changed the official name of the town from Gallanani to Esk in November 1913.  The town of Gallanani was surveyed on land excised from the Mount Esk pastoral run and this no doubt was the reason that it was first known colloquially as Mount Esk.  Mount Esk homestead was located on the right west bank of the Brisbane River about 9 kilometres north east of the town site.


Copyright © 2008 Council of the Shire of Esk