Large and rambling township built around a once-successful gold mine.
One of many reminders that Gympie was founded as a gold mining town, the
finding of the sizable quantities of gold was credited with saving the newly
founded state of Queensland from bankruptcy in 1867.
Mining here was principally an underground operation with the gold contained in
quartz reefs, this differs from many of the rich gold areas in Australia where
the gold was alluvial, literally nuggets picked up from the ground or panned
from creek beds.
This remarkable town proclaims proudly that it was 'The Town that saved
The story of Nash's discovery is a typical quixotic tale of luck. Nash was so down on his luck at the time that he literally had nothing more than a dog, a pick and a panning dish. When his pick broke he walked to Maryborough where, with an ounce of gold which he had panned, he bought rations and some more equipment. He returned to the Gympie area, went up a dry creek bed and within a week had 75 ounces of gold which he sold in
Located 166 km north of
Named after a local stinging tree which the local Aborigines reputedly called 'gimpi gimpi' and briefly called
The growth of Gympie was remarkable. Within months there were 25 000 people on the goldfields. Within a year a gold battery had been built. It was proclaimed a municipality in 1880, became a town a decade later and was a city by 1905. The railway arrived in 1881 and in 1888 it became one of the few towns in
Today Gympie is the centre of the Mary Valley agricultural district where beef and dairy cattle thrive along with tropical fruit and vegetables.