Original Sovereign Hotel in Warwick, Qld

Waringh Waringh' or 'cold place' in their language, Warwick has long been home to the Githabul people who are the traditional custodians of the area.

The first non-indigenous inhabitants of the area were Patrick & George Leslie who established the Canning Downs run in 1840, later building their home there in 1846.  This station became a hub for the region and in 1847 Patrick Leslie gained permission to choose a site on the station which would become a town.  Initially known as 'Canningtown', the settlement soon blossomed to include a general store, blacksmith, school and courthouse & was officially surveyed in 1849.

Transport options to this important regional centre soon followed, with Cobb & Co coaches beginning a route to the township in 1865 and the railway from Ipswich reaching Warwick in 1871.

For a short time, Warwick found itself at the end of the line for the railway which led to a booming local industry.  A brewery (1873), cooperative flour mill (1874) and brickworks (1874)  were all established, along with the solidification of the township with the construction and consecration of several churches.

In 1917, Prime Minister Billy Hughes visited Warwick to argue the case for conscription.  Famously, at the Warwick railway station one Warwick local expressed his views by throwing an egg at the Prime Minister.  Prime Minister Hughes demanded that the egg thrower be arrested however local law enforcement refused to do so as no Queensland law had been broken.  This incident led to the inception of the Australian Federal Police Force.

Back to blog