If you find yourself travelling through the Queensland Outback, then you might stumble across the town of Barcaldine. It may be a small town with a population of only 1,500, but Barcaldine is positively steeped in political history!
Have you heard of the ‘Tree of Knowledge’?
If you are planning on hiring a campervan and travelling into the Queensland outback, you’ll find this interesting little place with its famous landmark roughly 100km east of Longreach.
Tree of Knowledge – why is it famous?
In 1891, Barcaldine became the centre for the Great Shearers Strike, with up to 3,000 striking shearers marching under the ‘Eureka Flag’ to protest against poor working conditions and low wages. The magnificent ghost gum growing outside the railway station became a regular meeting place for their discussions, which resulted in the creation of the Australian Labour Party (still going strong to this day) who took ‘the Tree of Knowledge’ as the icon for their brand new party.
Sadly, the 170-year-old tree met an untimely death when it was poisoned in 2006. A memorial to the ‘Tree of Knowledge’ was built in its place. This cement look-alike inside a large wooden box is not particularly pretty during the day, but at night it is lit up in green lights which improves the look! Either way, you’ll enjoy the history!
If you are spending time in Barcaldine, then you could also check out the ‘Workers Heritage Centre’, a museum celebrating the Nation’s working people. You may also like to enjoy an ice-cream by the billabong in the lovely sprawling botanical gardens surrounding it.
If you are planning on taking a trip to Barcaldine, then get in touch with us and we’ll find you the best deal to suit your needs.
You can also get in touch with the Barcaldine Tourist Information Centre on Oak Street, Barcaldine for more information on places to stay and other tourist attractions. T: (07) 4651 1724.
This blog has been updated July 2017 to ensure the information is current and up to date.