365 Places: Toowoomba

New post from the 365 Places project.

Geokult Travel

Day 48: Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia

Now Toowoomba is a place that admittedly I don’t love, perhaps because I don’t know it well enough to have a strong feeling either way about the place. However, there are ancestral connections for me with Toowoomba, mainly through the paternal side of the family.

Benevolent Institution at Toowoomba, ca. 1902, from http://www.findandconnect.gov.au/ref/qld/objects/QD0000106.htm Benevolent Institution at Toowoomba, ca. 1902, from http://www.findandconnect.gov.au/ref/qld/objects/QD0000106.htm

The Benson family started in Australia in the late 1880s when Norwegian merchant sailor Anton Benson arrived in Australia via the USA. He settled in the Toowoomba area, marrying Carolina Wurst of German heritage in 1888, proceeding to have 13 children. Some say that there was also a Spanish or Catalan connection on the Wurst side of the family, but we do not know for sure. He was employed as a warder at the Willowburn mental asylum which is now called Baillie Henderson Hospital.

Queens Park Gardens, from Australian National Botanic Gardens http://www.anbg.gov.au/chabg/bg-dir/queens-toowoomba-qld.html Queens Park Gardens, from Australian National Botanic…

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