The Harrisville Museum is on the main street of Harrisville, south of Ipswich. The main building “Elanda” was once the Mackaway family home and became part of the Harrisville Museum in 1970.
At the entrance of the museum is a Stiger Vortex Rain Gun, a feature item of their collection. A cone-shaped barrel, the gun was originally designed to prevent destructive hailstorms in Austria. It was hoped they could help break the drought in 1902. A trial at Charleville with six of the guns failed.
At the front, there are a couple of tractors. Towards the back, there is some farming equipment. There isn’t much else to see on the outside.
The opening hours are infrequent, only opening on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month. I was there on the 4th Saturday, so I only got to wander around outside.
There is a fence back towards the main part of town with some interesting information about the town’s history and the area. There is mention of the Normanby Plains Base Line, the founding fathers of Harrisville, and interesting trivia about Harrisville.
There is also information about Charles & Elsa Chauvel, Australian movie pioneers. Charles married Elsa after she starred in a film he produced, Greenhide. They made a movie together, In the Wake of the Bounty, which discovered Errol Flynn. Australian themes, the influence of the world wars, and problematic experiences of indigenous Australians created by European settlement were commonly featured in their films. They also made the first colour Australian movie, Jedda.
Harrisville Museum was not visited as it was closed at the time of arrival in Harrisville.
To get there:
From Warrill View on the Cunningham Hwy heading south, turn left into Warrill View Peak Crossing Rd after crossing the bridge over Warroolaba Creek towards Harrisville. If coming from the south along Cunningham Hwy, turn right just before the bridge to head towards Harrisville. Follow Warrill View Peak Crossing Rd for 2.9km and turn right, which is the continuation of Warrill View Peak Crossing Rd. Continue for 2.9km and the Harrisville Historical Museum is on the left side of the road.
From Peak Crossing, turn into Warrill View Peak Crossing Rd towards Harrisville. Follow Warrill View Peak Crossing Rd for 6.3km, and turn right, which continues as Warrill View Peak Crossing Rd. Continue for another 1.9km with the Harrisville Historical Museum is on the right side of the road.
Cost: Adult $2.00, Student (Secondary) $1.00, Student (Primary) $0.50
Hours: 1st Sun 1pm-4pm, 3rd Sun 1pm-4pm
Wheelchair accessible: No