History Heritage and Culture HomeVisiting Western DownsExploring Western DownsWelcome TravellersHistory Heritage and Culture There are many fascinating stories throughout the Western Downs that have shaped the way we live today. From pioneer villages to art galleries and museums, you can experience these stories across our many towns and villages in our districts of Chinchilla, Dalby, Miles, Tara, and Wandoan. Chinchilla Chinchilla Historical Museum 17-33 Villiers Street, Chinchilla Chinchilla Historical Museum is dedicated to the natural resources of the Chinchilla area and the history of their use. It offers a glimpse into farming and local industry with key displays including: The Cypress Pine Centre, which tells the story of the saw milling industry that established the town; The Green Plague exhibit, explaining the devastation caused by the Prickly Pear cactus; and The Melon Festival display, celebrating Chinchilla as the ‘melon capital’ of Australia. Lupunyah Art Gallery, Chinchilla 1/50 Middle Street, Chinchilla (temporary location) Lupunya Art Gallery is a community-run gallery housed within the cultural precinct of Chinchilla’s CBD. Over the past decade, the Gallery has amassed a significant collection of Australian art that includes several seminal artworks by respected artists Rex Backhaus-Smith, Hugh Sawrey and botanical artist Grace Lithgow. Dalby Athlone Cottage, Jandowae Cnr High and Dalby Streets, Jandowae Located across from Lions Park, the slab hut was originally built circa. 1890 and was lovingly restored by volunteers. It houses pioneering memorabilia of the district, and the cottage originally had an ant bed dirt floor which was compacted and painted white. Bluebells Art Gallery, Bell 71 Maxwell Street, Bell Located at the Bell Bunya Community Centre, the gallery is a spacious, modern and aesthetically pleasing art gallery focuses on the work of local artists, members and friends of the Bell Art Group. Exhibitions change monthly to keep the approach fresh and inviting for art patrons and the many visitors to the Centre to browse and enjoy. Dingo Sculpture, Jandowae Cnr George and High Streets, Jandowae This monument marks the start of the 5,400km Dingo Barrier Fence – the longest fence in the world. The sculpture is enclosed by a replica of the original fence as it was in 1948. The barrier fence protects 26.5 million hectares of sheep and cattle grazing country in south-east Queensland from dingoes and wild dogs. Gallery 107 @ Dalby 23 Marble Street, Dalby (temporary location) Gallery 107 @ Dalby is an integral part of the Dalby Cultural Precinct at MyALL 107. The gallery’s aim is to showcase, support and nurture local creative talent by reserving a proportion of its exhibition program for artists from across the Western Downs Region. The exhibitions are always an interesting experience for audiences as they range from local artwork to national touring exhibitions. Pioneer Park Museum, Dalby 17 Black Street, Dalby Displaying one of the largest collections of working pioneer tractors and agricultural machinery in Queensland, as well as authentic colonial buildings and heritage items, the Dalby Pioneer Park Museum is a treasure trove of history. Walk through the original buildings and catch a glimpse of the lives of our earlier generations. Of notable interest is the handwritten letter by Ned Kelly asking authorities to allow his mother to visit him in prison. Miles Dogwood Crossing @ Miles Murilla Street, Miles John Mullins Memorial Art Gallery at Dogwood Crossing, Miles is the Western Downs’ premier cultural institution. Dogwood Crossing is a vibrant facility that delivers quality and enriched services to the community and visitors; connecting people, entertaining, engaging and inspiring creativity through literature, visual arts, technology and experiences. Miles Historical Village Museum 141 Murilla Street, Miles The Miles Historical Village Museum is a big talking point amongst all who have travelled this way. The museum was first established in 1971 where you literally step back into history when you explore the many buildings within this turn-of-the-century village. There are more than 30 buildings including a hospital, café, bank, post office and bakery. In addition to these buildings, you will find a number of other fantastic displays like the amazing shell collection; world class lapidary display, including many fine examples of local petrified wood. The extensive collection of war uniforms and memorabilia in the War Museum is a big attraction on its own. Tara Hannaford Museum 344 Hannaford Road, Hannaford Nestled within a small country community is the Hannaford Historical Museum. The museum houses a vast collection of local memorabilia including tools, photographs and possessions of residents from the Hannaford district throughout the years. Please enquire about our overnight camping facilities for visitors. Meandarra Anzac Memorial Museum Sara Street, Meandarra The Meandarra ANZAC Memorial Museum typifies the bravery and self-sacrifice of the first Anzacs, housing a large and comprehensive display of military memorabilia collected by dedicated locals over the past 30 years. The artefacts cover many of the battles in which our local war veterans fought. The contrasting diversity of the Museum’s pieces gives Meandarra a very unique collection including an elevated Canberra Bomber, a Grant Tank in North African colours and a Water Buffalo tank from the South West Pacific Campaigns. Myall Park Botanic Garden Gallery, Glenmorgan Myall Park Road, Glenmorgan The Myall Park Botanic Garden Gallery is dedicated to Dorothy Gordon. It houses the collection of original Dorothy Gordon wildflower paintings and also displays touring and local exhibitions with a botanical focus. Significant artists have worked as artists-in-residence over the years and have been commissioned to produce artworks for the collection. An art trail brochure has been developed to facilitate the discovery of these unique artworks whilst visiting the garden. Montys Garage Vintage Car Museum, Glenmorgan Sybil Street, Glenmorgan Montys Garage is a 1940s style auto garage which has been converted into a Vintage Car Museum housing a collection of 70 restored vintage cars and trucks. Get a close look at the cars on display or browse through the huge collection of auto memorabilia and large range of vintage spare parts and equipment. Tara and District Historical Museum 3 Milne Street, Tara The Tara Historical Society houses much of our Tara heritage ranging from a 1929 fire engine, to shearing memorabilia, Blue Moon picture theatre projection equipment and an authentic 1912 “Brauers” slab hut. It also contains Tara’s original police station jailhouse and furniture from the original court house. Stand on the original railway station and view the display of wooden rail wagons or walk through the town’s original school building. Wandoan Juandah Historical Site, Wandoan 92 Windeyer Road, Wandoan A truly unique slice of history, this is the original site of the Juandah Head-Station, the heart of a settlement which later became known as Wandoan. At the Juandah Historical Site you will find some of these original buildings still standing, including the old Juandah Store, built in the 1850s. The site also hosts a Folk Museum of local heritage items and social history. Here you can peruse various photographs of Juandah Station in operation and learn more about the life of the Wandoan District, from the exploits of Ludwig Leichhardt in 1844 to the intriguing stories of the Soldier Settler Land Ballots in the 1950s. Leichhardt Gallery, Wandoan 6 Henderson Road, Wandoan The Leichhardt Gallery is a community gallery space incorporated within the Wandoan Library. It is available for use by community groups and is often used by the Wandoan Arts Council to present travelling exhibitions and local displays of art. Artworks by local artists from Council’s regional collection are regularly on display.