Animals on the Loose in Highgate Hill

These days the most common animals to be seen on the streets of Highgate Hill are Scrub Turkeys .

scrub turkeys hughgate hill

Scrub Turkeys in our Highgate Hill backyard

This wasn’t always the case. The following article concerning Colville Street appeared in the Brisbane Telegraph in 1894.

Child killed by horse Colville Street Highgate Hill

Telegraph, Monday 3rd September 1894 –  Trove

The unfortunate young boy later died from his injuries.

Colville Street seems to have been prone to wandering animals as just a few years later the following incident was reported.

Bullock lose Colville Street Highgate Hill

Telegraph, Saturday 5th May 1900 – TROVE


One of Arthur Drapers bullock teams at Woodford 1925

Bullock teams continued to be used well into the 20th century (State Library of Queensland)

colville street 2017

There’s no sign of bullocks on Colville Street today though there have been sightings of a goat

goat colville street blog

The backyard goat in Colville Street munching on a rosemary bush.

At the time of these incidents, Highgate Hill still had a lot of open land that would not be  subdivided for many years. The photo below taken looking west from Highgate Hill around 1901 illustrates this. I also touched on subdivision in previous posts, The Blakeneys of Highgate Hill, The Hazelwood Estate, Highgate Hill 1885  ,  and Sankey Street, Steeped in History .

Dornoch Terrace Highagte Hill circa 1901
The view from Highgate Hill in 1901 (State Library of Queensland)

As late as 1916 accidents were still occurring with the victim in this case being an elderly lady residing in Dornoch Terrace.

Woman knocked down by calf 1916 Highgate Hill

Telegraph, Friday 30 June 1916 (TROVE)

Even tethered animals could be risky as described in a previous post, Runaway Horse and Cart 1907. Here’s another horse accident from 1905, this time from Carlton Street.

horse fractures leg carlton street

Telegraph, 3rd April 1905 – TROVE

In spite of all this, I think we could safely surmise that the risk today from vehicles speeding down roads like Dornoch Terrace is far higher than the risk of being injured by an animal in 1900!

9 thoughts on “Animals on the Loose in Highgate Hill

  1. Great post Paul.. I keep finding horse shoes here at home in the garden of Jones Street.. the original owner in the 1880s was a drayman.. I always wondered where he kept his animals..your post has given me a few clues


  2. Hi Paul,

    I was wondering if I could get your last name so I can cite you in my honours thesis.

    Im a James Cook University student who’s a 4th year archaeologist.

    I’m interested in your Ebenezer Thorne story and his association with John Ching who were dugong hunters.

    Please email me your last name on

    Kind Regards,

    Tim Russell


  3. Pingback: Children on the Loose | Highgate Hill and Its History

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s