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New Years Sports Carnival at Humpybong 1886

Updated: Nov 30, 2022

A sports carnival was held at the Redcliffe Sports ground on New Years Day 1886 with steamers bringing over 700 passengers across from Brisbane for the day:

Telegraph 31st December 1885:

"New Years Day - Excursion to Redcliffe. The splendid new steamer Lady Musgrove will leave Messrs. Howard Smith's Wharf on New Years Day at 9.30 am for the above pier, calling giant Lytton both ways. Fares 2s. 6d,: children 1s. 6d.

Music and refreshments. Come and explore the Shady Nooks and Running Brooks of this delightful watering place" W.M. Collins, Master.

The Brisbane Courier Tuesday 5 January 1886:


The following is supplied by correspondent: The Redcliffe (Humpybong) folk provided a good afternoon's sport for their visitors on New Year's Day. The steamers Lady Musgrave and Caniapa arrived at the pier at noon, bringing between 700 and 800 passengers, and as little time as possible was spent in getting ashore."

The Lady Musgrove:

"The pier was pretty well crowded with residents and visitors, and near the esplanade was a very nice triumphal arch, composed of green boughs and ferns and surmounted by the Union Jack. The whole of the little township was en fete. Many of the passengers by the steamers went to a land sale some little distance back from the beach, others went in for fishing, and the day being calm were more than ordinarily successful. Groups seemed to enjoy picnics on the reserve facing the beach, the picturesque honeysuckles making a good shade overhead, and the green sward a comfortable lounging place. The athletic sports were the main attraction, and competitors and spectators join in pronouncing the affair a very successful little meeting.

The first event was a 100 yards' race for lads under 16 years of ago. For this there were five starters, and the winner was Alfred Murphy, with Arthur Hobbs's good second.

Next came the Maiden Plate 100 yards. For this event seven started, Wedgwood being most fancied, but a few yards from the tape J. Levin, a New South Wales amateur, came with a rush and won by less than a foot from the favourite, Mat. Muir being very close up third.

For the Handicap Hurdle Race, 200 yards, only three men faced the starter, the high jumps no doubt keeping back some of the flyers. The result was Mulcahy (scratch), 1, T. Wedgwood (12 yards), 2; Mat. Muir (14 yards), 3. The next event, a sack race caused much fun, and was won by J. Adams.

Next came a race for all men over 45 years of age. This was cleverly won by Mr. Hunter, who had all the best of the start; Mr. Deazeley who gained very much in the last ten yards being second."

"The next race was the principal event of the day, the Redcliffe Handicap. For this there were eight starters, and a magnificent race resulted. Mulcahy (scratch) won by about 6in. after a great struggle with Levin (12 yards), who finished second, and Wedgwood (14 yards) third. None of the others were more than three yards behind. After this came a hop, step, and jump, which was also won by Mulcahy. Mr. W. M. Sutton acted very successfully as starter, and Mr. Deazeley as judge. The sports were over in time to admit of the passengers returning to town by the steamers. Building seems to be the order of the day at Redcliffe. The new telegraph and post offices are just about completed. The Hon. W. H. Wilson, M.L.C, and Mr. F. D. G. Stanley are amongst those who are about starting private residences, and before the end of the summer there will be ten new buildings facing the beach. Fishing has been very good during the past week, the principal kills being bream and it biting. It is no unusual thing to see lads carrying home forty or fifty good fish after a couple of hours sport."

Peter Boardman standing in the foreground watching a tug of war.

Photo from the Moreton Bay Library Collection: RMPC-100\100255

A page from the Pictorial History Of Redcliffe 1824-1949 book.

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