Marburg, Queensland

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Edmond Street in Marburg, Queensland.jpg
Intersection of Edmond Street and Queen Street, Marburg, 2011
Population873 (2016 census)[1]
 • Density48.23/km2 (124.9/sq mi)
Area18.1 km2 (7.0 sq mi)
Time zoneAEST (UTC+10:00)
State electorate(s)
Federal Division(s)Blair
Localities around Marburg:
Coolana Lark Hill Haigslea
Minden Marburg Haigslea
Tallegalla Tallegalla Mount Marrow

Marburg is a rural town in the City of Ipswich and a locality split between the City of Ipswich and the Somerset Region, both in Queensland, Australia.[2][3][4] In the 2016 census, Marburg had a population of 873 people.[1]


A small creek, the Black Snake creek, runs through Marburg. It is named after the Red-bellied Black Snake.


Marburg in 1908

German settlers arrived in the region around the 1860s. The district was originally called Sally Owens Plains, but takes its present name from Marburg, then in Saxony, Germany.[2]

The story goes that, when the station master of the nearby Walloon railway station asked the settlers where they lived, the settlers responded with 'ober dar'. He felt that 'ober dar' should have a proper name and since he had read an article about a town in Germany called 'Marburg' he decided to register their produce as coming from 'Marburg'. The settlers liked this solution and the name stuck.[citation needed]

The timber, sugar cane and dairy industries put Marburg on its feet. While Marburg in 1868 was a wilderness, the town grew over time. About 46 acres, sub-divided into 200 allotments, were offered for sale by auction on 29 November 1884. Advertising included details of the clearing of the Rosewood Scrub, of close-by townships, and the future rail and telegraph services, following "the establishment of the police station".[5][6] In 1900 Marburg had a courthouse, police barracks, a post office, two hotels, five churches, a State school, a School of Arts, several stores, a blacksmith, a butter factory, a sugar factory and a rum distillery. At that time nearly 80 percent of Marburg's population came from Germany or were of German descent.[7]

Frederick State School opened on 18 March 1879. In 1888 the name was changed to Marburg State School. From 1920 to 1934 it incorporated a rural school, which taught practical skills needed for farming. In 1977 a pre-school centre was added.[8]

Marburg Post Office opened on 1 October 1879 (a receiving office named Frederick had been open from 1878), was renamed Townshend in 1917 during World War 1 and reverted to Marburg in 1919.[9]

All Saints' Anglican Church, 2005

On 4 July 1891 All Saints' Anglican Church was officially dedicated by Bishop William Webber.[10] It was built at 2-6 Seminary Road (27°33′58″S 152°36′42″E / 27.5662°S 152.6117°E / -27.5662; 152.6117 (All Saints' Anglican Church (original site))) adjacent to the present Warrego Highway on 2 acres (0.81 ha) of land donated by Thomas Lorimer Smith, the owner of the mansion Woodlands, also in Seminary Road. It was designed by architect George Brockwell Gill of Ipswich and built by W. Luder for £225.[11][12] On Wednesday 9 November 1892, Bishop Webber returned to consecrate the church's burial ground.[13] Not being located in the town itself led to requests to relocate the church. In 1956 land was bought in Queen Street and a church hall was built on the site, opening in February 1959, but the church remained at its original location. However in the 1970s the plan to make the Warrego Highway four lanes wide required the resumption of part of the church's land. The last service was held at the original location on 22 May 1977 after which it was moved onto the Queen Street site beside the hall. On 22 October 1879 the church re-opened with a service donducted by Reverend John Magee. The cemetery remains at the original site.[11]

Marburg grew rapidly in the first half of the twentieth century, as the main road from Brisbane to Toowoomba passed through the town's centre. Marburg became popular as a stopover for travellers.

Marburg was the administrative centre for local government in the area, composing Walloon Division (1879-1903) and Shire of Walloon (1903-1917).[14]

In 1912 the Marburg branch line from Rosewood to Marburg was opened[15] but only a few years later the railway began to suffer from the competition of highway traffic. It still survived until 1965 when the line was closed.

Because of an anti-German sentiment of some State politicians the name of Marburg was changed during the First World War into Townshend,[16] a name change the locals did not support.[17] Dr. Sirois, the local General Practician at the time, was instrumental in having the name Marburg be re-introduced after the war in 1920,[18] which created a storm of protest but the name Marburg prevailed.

When the Warrego Highway was built in the 1960s, most of the traffic from Brisbane to Toowoomba bypassed Marburg, and subsequently the town has become less populated.

In 2011 census, Margburg had a population of 567 people.[19]

Heritage listings[edit]

Rosewood Historical Society building, 2014

Marburg has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:

Woodlands at Marburg, 2014


The Ipswich City Council operates a fortnightly mobile library service which visits Edmond Street.[25]

Marburg has active community groups such as the Marburg and District Resident's Association, the Rosewood Scrub Historical Society, the Marburg Show Society, The Marburg Fire and Rescue Station, the Marburg Rural Fire Brigade and the Marburg branch of the State Emergency Services.

Weekly Sunday services are held at All Saints' Anglican Church at 111 Queen Street (27°33′56″S 152°35′48″E / 27.5656°S 152.5966°E / -27.5656; 152.5966 (All Saints' Anglican Church)).[26]


Marburg State School is a government primary (Prep-6) school for boys and girls at Louisa Street (27°33′45″S 152°35′38″E / 27.5624°S 152.5939°E / -27.5624; 152.5939 (Marburg State School)).[27][28] In 2017, the school had an enrolment of 52 students with 5 teachers (4 full-time equivalent) and 6 non-teaching staff (4 full-time equivalent).[29]


'Woodlands' is Marburg's finest building. It is listed by the National Trust as a fine example of the nineteenth century plantation owner's residence and for its historic significance in relation to the development of various primary industries in Queensland. It was built between 1888 and 1891 by Thomas Lorrimar Smith who was the owner of the sawmill, sugarmill, distillery and other business interests in the region. At present the property services as a centre for functions such as weddings, business meetings and conferences.


The Marburg 'Black Snake Creek Festival' is a yearly event held in October and features musicians and other attractions.[30]

The 'Band in the Park' is an initiative of the Marburg and District Resident's Association on the first Friday of the month at 6.30 pm.

Marburg is well known for its 'Marburg dances' which take place every Saturday night in the hall on the showgrounds.

Harness racing takes place on a regular basis on the Marburg race course.


  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Marburg (SSC)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 20 October 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ a b "Marburg - town in City of Ipswich (entry 20917)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 29 November 2019.
  3. ^ "Marburg - locality in City of Ipswich (entry 48336)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 29 November 2019.
  4. ^ "Marburg - locality in Somerset Region (entry 49445)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 30 November 2019.
  5. ^ "Advertising". Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald And General Advertiser. XXIV (3484). Queensland, Australia. 20 November 1884. p. 6. Retrieved 27 August 2019 – via National Library of Australia.
  6. ^ "Town of Marburg". 1884. hdl:10462/deriv/456247. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  7. ^ Queensland Environmental Protection Agency (2000). Heritage Trails of the Great South East. State of Queensland. p. 71. ISBN 0-7345-1008-X.
  8. ^ Queensland Family History Society (2010), Queensland schools past and present (Version 1.01 ed.), Queensland Family History Society, ISBN 978-1-921171-26-0
  9. ^ Premier Postal History. "Post Office List". Premier Postal Auctions. Retrieved 10 May 2014.
  10. ^ "Australian Christian Church Histories - Marburg, QLD - All Saints Anglican". Australian Christian Church Histories. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
  11. ^ a b "All Saints Anglican Church". Churches Australia. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
  12. ^ "[?]aints' Church, Marburg". Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald And General Advertiser. XXXII (4647). Queensland, Australia. 6 July 1891. p. 3 (Daily.). Retrieved 29 July 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  13. ^ "BISHOP WEBBER AT MARBURG". Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald And General Advertiser. XXXIV (4894). Queensland, Australia. 10 November 1892. p. 5. Retrieved 29 July 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  14. ^ "Marburg, Haigslea, Ironbark". Queensland Places. Centre for the Government of Queensland, University of Queensland. Archived from the original on 11 October 2012. Retrieved 3 January 2013.
  15. ^ Australian Railway Historical Society Bulletin, December, 1960 pp195-197
  16. ^ "The Passing of Marburg". The Brisbane Courier. National Library of Australia. 16 June 1917. p. 4. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
  17. ^ "Townshend or Marburg?". The Brisbane Courier. Qld.: National Library of Australia. 4 September 1917. p. 6. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
  18. ^ "BACK TO GERMAN NAME". The Sydney Morning Herald. National Library of Australia. 10 January 1920. p. 14. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
  19. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Marburg (State Suburb)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 25 March 2015. Edit this at Wikidata
  20. ^ "Marburg Hotel (entry 600732)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
  21. ^ "Marburg Community Centre and First World War Memorial (entry 600733)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
  22. ^ "Rosewood Scrub Historical Society Building (entry 600731)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
  23. ^ "Marburg State School (entry 650002)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  24. ^ "Woodlands (entry 600734)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
  25. ^ "Ipswich Libraries: Mobile library schedule of stops - January to June 2018" (PDF). Ipswich City Council. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 January 2018. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  26. ^ "About Us". Rosewood Anglican Parish. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
  27. ^ "State and non-state school details". Queensland Government. 9 July 2018. Archived from the original on 21 November 2018. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  28. ^ "Marburg State School". Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  29. ^ "ACARA School Profile 2017". Archived from the original on 22 November 2018. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  30. ^ Smith, Denis (11 October 2014). "Marburg's festival spirit". Queensland Times. Archived from the original on 18 May 2015.

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