chapter  4
12 Pages

The spread of European settlement in coastal Queensland

This chapter provides a brief overview of the history of European settlement on the coast of Queensland, based on secondary sources. In particular, I have used the histories written by Bolton (1981), Fitzgerald (1982, 1984), Reynolds (2003) and Evans (2007), and the Australian historical geography by Powell (1988), all of which describe European settlement in Queensland. This chapter also draws heavily on the works of historical geography by Griggs (1997, 1999a, 1999b, 2000, 2003, 2004, 2011). It situates the subsequent narrative of changes in the coral reefs, islands and marine wildlife of the Great Barrier Reef in the context of the northward expansion of European settlement on the Queensland coast and the establishment of a new pattern of land use: one based on the dominant activities of pastoralism, sugar cane farming, mining and tourism. Such a historical context is required because the decline of the Great Barrier Reef has been partly attributed to those terrestrial activities (see Chapter 1), and it is now widely acknowledged that some parts of the Great Barrier Reef have been significantly affected by terrestrial activities in the adjacent catchments (Williams, 2001; Williams et al., 2002; Furnas, 2003).