- The Lutwyche Cemetery Project
- How to Find A Grave
- Overview of Lutwyche Cemetery 1946
- Overview of Lutwyche Cemetery 2010
- War Graves Section of Lutwyche Cemetery - For More Detail See Sub-Section of Lutwyche Cemetery below.
- Details of War Graves Section
- The First Burial
- Trees on Gympie Road
- Short History - Beverley Isdale - Beginnings
- The Dawn Service on Anzac Day
- Lutwyche Dawn Service Assembly
- Those Far Away - Cremations
- Private William (Billy) Edward Sing - Sniper
- A Unique Celtic Cross Monument
- Singer - Williams Family Grave
- Sub-sections of Lutwyche Cemetery
The Lutwyche Cemetery Project
A Complete-As-Can-Be Transcription (In Progress)
by a team of volunteers coordinated by Bradley Scott
Currently completed: 2534 names of an approximated 10,000 graves.
To view the site click on Link 1 below.
How to Find A Grave
• Open the Brisbane City Council Website
• Go to Facilities and Recreation drop down menu and click
• Select Cemeteries and click on
• Grave Location Search appears click on 'search our cemeteries'
• Fill in the form that appears and click on search
• The details of several persons may appear so click on the one that you want
• The full details of the grave appear including other persons in the grave and a map is appended
• Print the whole page and take it with you.
When you get the details there are several headings:
• Part - there two parts to the cemetery viz: Monumental and Anzac
• Portion - indicated by signs on the roads - the map you get will point to the Portion
• Section - this refers to the rows of graves and the numbers are painted in white paint on the roadside kerbs
• Grave Number - not much help because they are not marked - you just walk along the section or row till you find the grave
Overview of Lutwyche Cemetery 1946
Like the rest of Brisbane, Lutwyche Cemetery has grown over the years from small beginnings in 1878 when the first burial is thought to have taken place to the present when it has reached its boundaries.
The 1946 aerial photo shows a compact grave yard marching to the west into the bush. On the east is Gympie Road with the tramlines clearly marked but few vehicles can be seen as petrol rationing was still in force. Kitchener Road forms the northern boundary while to the south is Wallin Street with an entrance from Maudsley Street.
The aerial photo shows the extent of 68 years growth with the then newly developed War Cemetery on the western end. The War Cemetery was developed following the carnage of World War II; there are 386 burials for that conflict and only 9 for World War I. The beginnings of the War Cemetery are clearly marked with two or three rows of white headstones in the area on the extreme left. The Cross of Sacrifice was not erected till 1950 and Lutwyche Cemetery had only 11 blocks of graves.
The trees are limited to a cluster on the Kitchener Road frontage, on the main internal drive off Gympie Road and a row in the south east corner along Gympie Road. The tramlines are clearly marked on Gympie Road and on the northern corner of Kitchener and Gympie Roads is Glentanna, the home of Michael Gallagher whose tannery was a little further north along Gympie Road. In the top right hand corner on the southern corner of Kedron Street and Gympie Road is Glenora, the home of Paul Maggs whose tannery was a little further along Kedron Street. These were two of the few grand homes in the area; today both of them are car sales yards.
Overview of Lutwyche Cemetery 2010
The 2010 aerial map shows the growth of the last 74 years as the cemetery has grown to the boundaries of the original block of land with 20 blocks of graves. The War Cemetery and the Lawn Cemetery are clearly visible while the increase in trees is marked.
The Sexton's house in the North East corner is no longer a dwelling but is used as an office and is well preserved and garages have been added. There are still burials taking place but the most burials now go to Pinnaroo or the Crematorium at Albany Creek. Reburials in existing graves are permitted after a lapse of more than 30 years but only for direct descendants and immediate family.
War Graves Section of Lutwyche Cemetery - For More Detail See Sub-Section of Lutwyche Cemetery below.
Details of War Graves Section
The large map of the War Graves Section is divided into three parts on the east-west axis.
The eastern section (Right side) is the early lawn cemetery for service personell who died after or between the wars. In some graves a spouse is also buried. All graves have flat plaques, mostly bronze with a few stone ones..
The middle section holds the graves of those who died in wars, those on active service.
The western section (Left side) is the second or newer part of the lawn cemetery.
There are a number of service graves outside the War Graves section in the Monumental section of the Cemetery. Some of these predate the War Graves section especially those from the Boer War and World War I.
The First Burial
The cemetery was gazetted on October 1878, and David Teague records the first burial was of Walter Silcock, aged 5 years, on the 4th August 1878. According to the Brisbane City Council Grave Location Search he is buried in an unmarked grave in Portion GP2, Section 46, Grave No. 99999; the latter number indicates that the location within the section is unknown.
Section 46 contains 34 plots in two rows; 19 plots are inscribed with the names of the occupants while 15 have no inscriptions. The names of the occupants or owners of all plots are recorded in the Site Books of the cemetery and have been identified; there is no plot holding the body of Walter in Section 46. Hopefully, more research will tell.
Another twist to the story is that about three weeks after Walter was buried an even younger child, Annie Elizabeth Tipping, less than 12 months old, was also buried on 28th August 1878 in the same plot.
Just how this was done is intriguing; how would the second burial be excavated without disturbing the first burial? It is possible since both bodies would have been small only part of the first grave could have been opened and the bodies be lain head to foot. We will probably never know.
A wooden cross may have been used as a marker, but we will probably never know. That, of course, is a frequent comment when researching history.
Trees on Gympie Road
The eastern side of the cemetery fronting on to Gympie Road, which is called Lutwyche Road in this vicinity, has a fine stand of trees many of which are may date back to the 19th Century. Prominent on Gympie Road are some Callitris or Cypress with a towering Bunya Pine (Araucaria bidwillii) and a Hoop Pine (Araucaria cunninghamii) towards the southern end.
Short History - Beverley Isdale - Beginnings
Public meetings were held in November 1876 to assess interest in the necessity of a new cemetery in the northern suburbs of Brisbane. (20) Trustees of the German Station Cemetery at Nundah reserved that cemetery for local use only, but it was also showing signs of overcrowding, as well as being situated near swampy land. The expense of interment at the Brisbane General Cemetery at Toowong was "absolutely crushing to poor people". (21) Those who could afford it, also found that they were continually paying subscriptions towards poor people's funerals.
In response to advertisements in newspapers, Henry Craig offered to sell his land to the Lutwyche Cemetery Trust. The total area of the three pieces of land was 25 acres 1 rood 12 perches (10.14 ha). It had a substantial three rail fence and one portion had a comfortable two-room cottage with ornamental flower and fruit trees. "It was admirably situated commanding a fine view for a long distance around." (22)
Surveyor W. Davidson agreed with Craig's praise of the land and estimated its value at £313 ($616). The soil was a mixture of gravel and clay and the area could be used immediately as it was only lightly timbered. Its other advantage was that it was accessible by a good road. (23) Rules and regulations for the trustees to follow were gazetted in October 1878 (24) but Walter Silcock, aged 5 was the first burial on 4th August 1878. (25)
Board of Trustees
It was not until 1886 that the area was officially reserved as a cemetery with R. Thorrold, J. Cooper, K. McLennan, E. Slaughter, H. Wheeler, R. Lane, G. Fischer and W. Lynch appointed as trustees. (26) Their unpaid work involved administration and checking of all applications for grave sites and their design, (27) as well as supervision of the sexton. They were also responsible for the finances of the cemetery, such as the sexton's wage and replacement of worn equipment. (28)
They sought advice from Philip McMahon, curator of the Botanic Gardens, regarding the type of trees to be planted. He suggested that the land was unsuitable for trees unless it was properly trenched and after that, he would be happy to recommend suitable varieties. However the Board thought it had other more important concerns. (29)
The relationship between the Board and various sextons was fairly stormy at times. The sexton's salary was raised to £80 ($160) per year in 1897 but he had to devote the whole of his time to cemetery work. Within a couple of years, they changed the rules and allowed him to do private work, provided he kept the cemetery in order. (30)
Trustees served for varying times on the Board and when they resigned, there was a very formal process for replacement. Prospective trustees had to be nominated at a well-publicised public meeting and then the names were forwarded to the Lands Department for approval.
In 1899 Paul Maggs accepted appointment to the Board of Trustees of the Lutwyche Cemetery and held that post for at least 22 years serving alongside friends and colleagues including fellow tanner Michael Gallagher, the shop keeper John King, the coach builder James Hamilton and his younger brother Alfred. Alfred joined the board in 1905. The Lutwyche Cemetery was to become the final resting place of a number of family members over the years to come. (PAUL MAGGS 1866-1956 James W Gibson - Family History)
Problems and Complaints
In 1894 a "Lover of Truth and Light" complained to the Department about a nomination and the caretaker's role, given that the latter was "much to (sic) good a patron of the Public House just at the cemetery." No action was taken. (31)
However a petition circulated in 1920 resulted in a detailed investigation by the Land's Department. Some of the complaints included that a recent public meeting to nominate a new trustee was poorly advertised, that the sexton was badly treated, and that trustees' tenders for work got approval.
The trustees satisfied the inspector that all the rules had been followed. They contacted many of the petitioners who hurriedly apologised for their signatures when the trustees hinted that legal action might be taken. Most of the petitioners had been accosted by the sexton while they were visiting the cemetery and they had many excuses. Some said they had no glasses or they didn't read what they were signing and they meant no harm to the trustees whom they didn't even know! The sexton seemed to think he had been unfairly treated when he was sacked. (32)
Much of the maintenance work in the early part of this century was done J. H. Wayper. He contracted to repair gates and build a shelter shed in 1914, repairs and conveniences shed in 1915, and painting and numbering of section posts in 1917. He was also the son-in-law of James Hamilton, a trustee who was the target of the 1920 complaint. Hamilton assisted Wayper occasionally when he got behind with his work. (33)
Early Settlers - Administration
Many early settlers of the district are buried in Lutwyche Cemetery and their occupations included coachbuilders, farmers, shopkeepers and civic figures. Margaret and Andrew Hamilton, John Thondley, members of the Adsett and Early families, and Peter McLachlan are just a few. The country and western singer Buddy Williams is also buried there. (34) Aaron Adsett, an early purchaser of land in the district, left instructions that £100 or part thereof, be set aside for a tombstone with a suitable epitaph. (35) Christian Frederick Theodor Smith, a wood cutter of Downfall Creek, died in 1905 but his first wife, Thomasine, who died in 1872 and is mentioned on his headstone, was buried in the English Cemetery at Paddington. It seems that Christian, who had been in the colony for forty years, had been part of the large wave of Prussian immigrants to Queensland in the 1860s. (36)
The administration of the cemetery was taken over by the Brisbane City Council in 1930. (37) Many of the trustees had been businessmen, farmers, gentlemen, and tannery owners in the district and performed their duties conscientiously. Some, such as solicitor J. Nicol Robinson, found after nine years that it was too difficult to attend meetings. (38)
There are some plots that were paid for years ago but never used and the Council is considering selling them. There are about 27,000 graves in the cemetery and it is still used for new burials, particularly family graves where there is some space available. (39)
Lutwyche Cemetery is on a busy highway and urban development has spread far beyond the suburb and it is still an important part of the community. Local people use the area as a short cut to back streets; people walk their dogs and visitors place flowers on graves, particularly on special occasions such as ANZAC Day, Mother's Day and Father's Day. Many appreciate that a complex history lies in Lutwyche.
Endnotes and Sources
Australia - Cemeteries in the State of Queensland, 2, London, The Commission, 1961, p. 25.
20 C. Bale to Hon. J.R. Dickson, MLA, 27 December 1876, Department of Natural Resources, CEM 78.
21 Hon. J.R. Dickson, MLA to Hon. J. Douglas, MLA, 28 December 1876 and C. Bale to Hon. J. Douglas, MLA, 31 January 1877, in Department of Natural Resources, CEM 78.
22 Henry Craig to Lutwyche Cemetery Trust, 11 December 1876 in Department of Natural Resources, CEM 78
23 W. Davidson to Colonial Secretary, 27 January 1877, Department of Natural Resources CEM 78.
24 Queensland Government Gazette, 25 October 1878, p. 941.
25 D. R. Teague, History of Kedron, Colonial Press, Stafford, Brisbane, 1976, p. 56.
26 Queensland Government Gazette, 23 February 1886, p. 676.
27 Cemetery regulations at Lutwyche Cemetery in 1878', in Fisher & Shaw, op. cit., pp. 89-93.
28 Lutwyche Cemetery Board, Minutes, 14 July 1894.
29 ibid., 12 October 1895 & 11 July 1896. "ibid., 9 October 1897 & 25 April 1899.
30 ibid. , 9 October 1897 & 25 April 1899
31 Anon. to Lands Department, 21 February 1894, Department of Natural Resources, CEM 78.
32 ibid., Petition 25 August 1920; T .F. Powell to Minister for Public Lands 1 February 1921.
33 ibid., Charge against trustees, 25 November 1920.
34 Windsor & Districts' Historical Society Inc. A Walk through Lutwyche Cemetery, 28 July 1997, The Society, Lutwyche, 1997, pp. 4, 8, 9,10.
35 Will of Aaron Adsett, died 28 November 1921, Supreme Court, Ecclesiastic Court, Queensland, Southern Division, Number 134, 1922.
36 Administration of Christian Frederick Theodor Smith, died 26 January 1905, Supreme Court, Ecclesiastical Court, Queensland, Southern Division, 85 of 1905.
37Queensland Government Gazette, 31 July 1930, p.333.
38 J. Nicol Robinson to Lutwyche Cemetery Board, 25 February 1904, Department of Natural Resources, CEM 78.
39 Moy, op. cit.
The Dawn Service on Anzac Day
Possibly the most important organised day of the year at Lutwyche Cemetery is Anzac Day the 25th April, when the Dawn Service takes place attended by up to two thousand people.
The tradition of the Anzac Day Dawn Service began at Albany WA on 25th April 1923 when the Rev Arthur White, an Anglican Priest and World War I Chaplain, led a group of friends to commemorate those who had served in the Great War. The reason for starting at dawn is partly because it is a traditional time for battles to begin
There is no record of when the tradition was first observed at Lutwyche Cemetery but by about 1930 it was widely observed around Australia and New Zealand and extended into several islands in the South Pacific. The Order of Service, which gradually developed, is now well established and is conducted by the local sub-branch of the Returned Services League Australia, which is, in the case of Lutwyche, the Kedron-Wavell Sub Branch located at Chermside. A second service, preceded by a short march, is conducted at Chermside later in the morning at 8.30am which is also well attended.
Lutwyche Cemetery War Graves Section
The section is marked by a tall white Helidon freestone Latin cross with a bronze sword, blade down, on the face.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission notes that the Lutwyche Cemetery contains 386 Second World War burials, 1 being an unidentified Australian Airman. There are also 9 burials of the First World War and 3 burials of other nationalities. The war graves plot also contains the Queensland Cremation Memorial which commemorates 36 members of the Australian Forces who died in Queensland during the Second World War and whose remains were cremated.
Internments continue, the latest being the burial of Lt. K A Hudson who died in 1966 on duty in Borneo and whose body was only recently recovered; the burial took place 16th April 2010. In all there are 398 Identified Casualties.
Lutwyche Dawn Service Assembly
During the hours of darkness the participants come in cars which they park in the surrounding streets and walk into the cemetery where they are met by high school students who hand out small torches in the shape of candles along with printed programs. The torches are lit during the ceremony and also provide a little light for the people to find their way to the ceremonial site; some bring their own torches. Some participants come on their own while others are in family groups, often with very young children.
The Order of Service
The congregation assembles in the darkness of pre-dawn, gathering around the Cross of Sacrifice and the ceremony begins with the Catafalque Party of four service personnel taking up their stations around the cross facing outward, heads bowed with arms reversed in the mourning stance. They are followed by the Colour Party coming from the south, carrying the flags of the armed services and the national flag, to take up their station facing the cross.
The crowd, which numbers between one and two thousand, stands in solemn silence watching, listening and holding candles; even the children are unusually quiet adding to the expectant atmosphere.
Welcome Address & Resolutions
The Welcome Address
This is given by a veteran who may be the Sub Branch President or someone specially chosen. The participants listen in respectful silence but join in a following hymn such as "O God, Our Help in Ages Past"; the singing is led by a small choir of local high school students.
As the night fades and the light rises in the east, the birds begin to sound their welcome to the day.
The Oaths of Loyalty are made to the Government of Australia and to the Queen as Queen of Australia.
Another Hymn such as "Amazing Grace" is then sung.
Recently Deceased Veterans are Rembered
Deceased Veterans (RSL)
The names of those who have died since the previous Anzac Day are read out by a veteran, or some designated person, to the sound of a lament played on the Bagpipes.
Prayers are Said
Led by the Padre the crowd recites or listens respectfully to the Lord's Prayer and the Prayer for Peace.
Wreaths are Laid at the Cross of Remembrance
Representatives of local organisations and private persons then come forward in solemn procession and individually walk up to the monument steps, lay their wreath down, retreat a few steps, stand facing the cross, bow their head for a short time, turn and walk off.
Last Post, The Ode
A bugler sounds the signaller's trumpet which signals the going down of the sun on the lives of those who are dead. This is probably the most sombre moment in the service; it is the farewell to the dead. The Colour Party lowers the standards towards the Cross of Sacrifice.
The ode is recited by a spokesperson:
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning We will remember them.
The crowd breaks silence and affirms:
We will remember them.
Reveille, Closing Address, National Anthem
Suddenly the mood changes as the bugle sounds the beginning of the new day; for the congregation, life goes on. The Colour Party raises the standards high and the Catafalque Party presents arms.
The final stage is reached and the spokesperson invites the congregation to come to breakfast at Kedron-Wavell Services Club and join in the March and second service at the Chermside Shrine of Remembrance.
Australian National Anthem
Led by a choir, of school students, the people join in the singing.
At the conclusion the Catafalque Party and the Colour Party march off, the people move away fairly quickly to their transport and home; the Dawn Service is over for another year and the dead sleep on.
Those Far Away - Cremations
Private William (Billy) Edward Sing - Sniper
For a more detailed section on Billy Sing go to the Sub-section War Graves below. It also contains the details of the two recent commemorations of Billy's life and exploits.
A Unique Celtic Cross Monument
This monument is in the traditional mode of the Celtic Cross which is used in the Celtic nations of Ireland, Scotland and Wales. All claim it as their own and have many interpretations as to its symbolism.
On many of the Irish crosses the panels on the stock show scenes from the Gospels and are very definitely religious in intent. This cross has the Celtic endless weaving art on its panels which is often seen as denoting eternity, while the cross is the Cross of Christ surrounded by the stone circle.
Whether the above meaning was that of the grave's two occupants is unknown. We have no information about either of them.
Singer - Williams Family Grave
Harold "Buddy" Williams (1918 - 1986) was an Australian country music singer and songwriter. He was the first Australian born to record Country Music in Australia which was originally called Hillbilly Music.
Buddy Williams was born in Newtown in Sydney N.S.W. and was soon placed in Glebe Point Orphanage. After many failed escape bids as a child, he was soon fostered out as a young boy to a dairy farming family at Dorrigo on the north coast of New South Wales. It soon became apparent that rather than looking for a new child to bring up, they were more interested in an unpaid labourer. This was not uncommon in the depression.
On the 7th of September 1939 he recorded six songs for the Regal Zonophone label. More recording sessions followed during the war in 1940, 1941, 1942, 1943 and 1945. Early on Buddy Williams enlisted in the army during World War II and many of the recording sessions were done whilst on leave from active service. In the final days of WWII he was seriously wounded at Balikpapan in Indonesia and was not expected to live. He was recommended for the Military Medal.
After the war and when he had recovered from his injuries, he set about forming one of the largest ever traveling rodeo tent shows Australia has ever seen. He toured the length and breadth of the country with this road show, being the first Australian entertainer to take a full road show on tour through the Northern Territory and far north Queensland. He blazed the trail for many artists to follow down through the years, visiting the isolated outback communities.
Later he toured for 11 months of the year, every year with the Buddy Williams Variety Show, visiting the isolated towns and communities of the bush.
Despite the constant touring over the years he continued to record right up until he died in 1986. His last recordings were made just months before his death, from cancer. He was one of the last Australian singers who only used a guitar as accompaniment. (Wikipedia)
- Link to Wikipedia on Harold (Buddy) Williams - Buddy was a prominent singer and pioneer of Country and Western singing in Australia.
Sub-sections of Lutwyche Cemetery
The following is a copy of text on the the top Plaque in Lutwyche War Cemetery. AUSTRALIA IN THE TWO WORLD WARS In the First World War more than...
War Veterans of Other Nations
Over the years war veterans from other nations have settled in Australia and were buried in Lutwyche cemetery. Usually buried in the Monumental...