The Pine Settlements

Road access to the Pine Rivers region was limited until the discovery of gold at Gympie in 1867. Prior to this time, the first roads in the area crossed the South Pine River at Cashs Crossing and the North Pine River at Gordons Crossing or Youngs Crossing.

Pine Rivers Library Service P0193
Cobb & Co. coach crossing the 'long logging' on Fresh Water Creek, Old Gympie Road, Kallangur, mid 1880s.

In 1868, the opening up of a coastal route to Gympie allowed Cobb and Co. coaches to expand local passenger and mail services. As Tom Petrie's Murrumba homestead was the location for the first change of horses after leaving Brisbane, a mail office and hostelry was established. This was the beginning of what became the North Pine (later Petrie) township.

The 1870s saw the establishment of provisional schools in the Pine Rivers area and the commencement of local government. The railway to North Pine was opened in 1888 with stations at Strathpine and Lawnton serving the eastern areas of the Shire. The western areas of the Shire were provided with a railway service to Samford in 1918 and Dayboro in 1920. This line, however, was closed beyond Ferny Grove in 1955.

By the late 1880s, dairying had emerged as the economic mainstay of the region. Although large quantities of locally produced milk and cream were railed to Brisbane and to other places such as the Caboolture and Kingston butter factories, one of the earliest butter factories in Queensland, the Samsonvale Butter Factory, opened at Samson Creek in 1892. In 1903, after the disastrous "Federation Drought", this facility was rebuilt and reopened in Terrors Creek (Dayboro) as the Silverwood Butter Factory.

Significant other early industries were a rum distillery in Strathpine, the Normanby Distillery, which commenced producing rum in 1875, and a cornflour mill established in Lawnton in 1898 as the Lawnton Cornflour and Starch Mills, but later known as the Paisley Cornflour Mill.