Historical complex - taylor st

History in the making

Located at Taylor Street, Childers our historical display complex is a real ‘step back in time‘. It  features early cottages, a post office, former school building, two steam locomotives, museum, history displays & rotunda. Our historical displays offer a true educationally rewarding experience, see what Visitors are saying: “Highly recommended for children by Wide Bay Kids“.

History in the making: Catch a story here, which describes Australia’s Oldest Tank Engine #4 and the fascinating story behind it being now located at our Isis District Historical Complex in Childers. Review; “Arthur Smith an ex secretary with the Isis District Historical Society, says Number Four is Australia’s oldest tank engine. There are seven other 060T locomotives in Australia, but none older than Number Four, which was made by John Fowler and Company in Leeds in 1896. This Number Four, a locomotive that was shipped from England to Queensland to haul cane, then went to Western Australia, and nearly ended up in Norway before returning to Childers.”

Re- opening: Tuesday 2nd February, 2022
Hours: Wednesday to Friday,  9am – 12pm until further notice.

Other times by appointment

Our Rotunda can also be hired for special events.

We welcome organised tours for School Groups and or Tour Groups
for enquiries please contact us prior.

Please Note:

  • The buildings are not wheelchair friendly, though the Rotunda is accessible.
  • Eftpos is not available
  • Entry Costs: Adults – $5.00 ea    Children – $1.00 ea
  • Children FREE if accompanied by a paying adult.

Catch Us here also:

Historical Complex

Key to the above image:

  1. Entrance Gate: Entry is through a yellow stringy bark archway flanked by rails of grey ironbark, enhanced by cattle brands of pioneer families of the district. They were burned onto the rails during an open day in 1993.
  2. Waluma Post Office: was moved to its present location in 1995. It was originally a slab hut situated beside the Gregory River. It was also used as a barn & stables on the Kingston property at Cordalba. This family donated the building to the Historical SOciety in 1994. The original slabs are over 100 years old.
  3. Steam Locomotives: Locomotive #4 was made in 1896 and Locomotive #6 in 1912, both by John Fowler Co. in Leeds, England. The trains operatedd at the CSR Childers Sugar Mill until 1932 when CSR closed the mill.. These two locomotives were purchased by Isis Central Sugar Mill in 1933.
  4. Former Isis Central Mill State School: closed in 1987, it was brought to the historical complex in 1988 as a Bicentennial project. Within the building it holds a treasure of old school items; one room is set up as a classroom, we have old photos, items from yesteryear, aboriginal artifacts, some sugar industry history and a large rock collection.
  5. Underneath the Old School Building: we have a collection of horse drawn vehicles as well as tools & a restored Fordson tractor plus memorabilia from Philpott’s “Heart brand” cordial factory which was situated in Noel St, Childers.
  6. The Workers Cottage: was donated by the Isis Central Sugar Mill. It has been authentically restored with furnishings dated from the turn of the century (C19oo’s). This cottage was the first building set up in the Childers Historical complex in 1985.

7. General Store:  this old building came from the Isis District Hospital. It now serves as a General Store & houses an old National Cash Register from Comino’s Cafe. This sits on a red cedar counter from Sutton’s Bakery. Around the walls are items which were sold in stores years ago.

8. Tree plantings: these trees were planted in 1988. they are a reproduction of the type of scrub trees which grew in the district before it was cleared to make way for agriculture, especially sugar cane, which was the main industry in the early settlement days.

9. The Rotunda: was built with funds from a Gaming Benefit Fund grant. It was opened on September 1st 2002. Some items used on the rotunda hold historical significance, eg. an 1887 school bell from the Childers State primary School.
Available for Hire.

10. Five bay Shed:  was built in March 2000 with funds again from the Gaming Benefit Fund grant and also assistance from Childers Rotary. It houses farm equipment artefacts and old printing equipment.

11. Derrick & Winch: adjacent to the 2 locomotives is a derrick which was used on George Nixon’s farm at South Isis. It was a pulley system using horses. The whole stick sugar cane was raised off the wagon which transported the cut cane out of the farm to the railway siding where it was then lowered onto a can truck and transported to the sugar mill by locomotive. After horse power, a winch was used to power the pulley system on the farm derrek. This winch on display was donated by Kerry Bell of Tanah Merah, QLD. It was a piece of equipment used regularly in the farm abattoirs to service the small butcher shop in Toogoolawah, QLD in 1945.


Fascinating to see both Aboriginal and Non Aboriginal history from an Aboriginal descendant and historical researcher of the Dundaburra traditional people of Buth'arth of the Northern Kabi Kabi Nation. Thumbs up to all who have spent so much time and effort over the years to preserve precious items of historical significance and importance 👍
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