Register your interest

Register your interest

A place where the past inspires the present

Upper Caboolture was home to 26 farming families from the late 1800’s. Mostly dairy farms, cattle, pigs, sugar cane, sorghum, bananas, clover and rye grass crops. Most of the streets and bridges in the district are named after these families.

Caboolture River was important to the community. Steamboats would berth near the farm and there was a slip and jetty on the land. Steamboats would transport cut timber. Willow trees lined the length of Caboolture River along the farm (1744 metres) and large purple lilies grew in the gully.

The Newton clan are 5 generations of farmers and were one of early settlers in Upper Caboolture. Great grandfather Zanow owned a farm that is now the Caboolture Golf Club. The Zanows were responsible for a lot of the old buildings in Caboolture, the memorial hall, and St Lawrence Anglican and Lutheran churches. Granddad Ted Newton (son of Mr Zanow) bought his first 100-acre farm in 1925 and then later in 1945 moved to the 120-acre property further along at 413 Caboolture River Road. Ted Newton registered Merryvale Jersey Stud. In 1965 Jeffrey bought the farm from his father.

Father and Son hand cleared the 120 acres of Merryvale during the 1940’s. The cut timber from the farm helped to build the Upper Caboolture Farmers Assembly Hall, built all the dairy bails (sheds) and some of the iron bark trees were contributed to the building of the Grey Street Bridge (Brisbane city) and local bridges.

Jeff Newton and his father worked extensively with the DPI growing different crops, use of fertilizers and different methods of irrigation. This research and development was then shared with other farmers in other Queensland districts. There were field days held at Merryvale by the DPI for other farmers to come and see the experiments. One year the Newtons hosted a tour by National Geographic.

Granddad Ted and Lilly Newton were committee members of the local Farmers Association for 40 years. Their farm Merryvale would host many community gatherings and special events. Ted was the secretary of the Morayfield P&C for 25 years as well as the local fire warden. The Newtons were the first to obtain a license to pump water needed for irrigation from the Caboolture River. The river was beautiful clean water with a gravel bed.

They were the first farmers to use different methods of flood irrigation. They were the first to use a walking irrigation system. They were amongst the first farmers to trial AI (artificial insemination) breeding and trialled various crops whilst working with DPI. This groundbreaking breeding is used today. The Newton farm experimental work and new technics were often published in Queensland Agricultural Journals and Queensland Country Life Newspapers.

Through the Newton Family we understand the history of the land and appreciate the foundations for the new generations of residents to live.