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Maurice OConnell Memorial
Maurice OConnell Memorial

Photographs supplied by Diane Watson

The monument erected over the grave commemorates Queensland Pioneer and President of the Legislative Council, Sir Maurice Charles O`Connell (1812 - 1879).

O`Connell was elected a member of the Legislative Council in 1846. He was appointed Commissioner of Crown Lands for the Burnett district in 1848, became government resident at Port Curtis in 1854, and held this position until 1860.

He was nominated as one of the original members of the Queensland Legislative Council in 1860, and introduced in July of that year a bill to provide for primary education in Queensland. Shortly afterwards he was elected President of the Legislative Council and retained this position until his death.

There has just been erected above the remains of the late Sir Maurice O'Connell, a monument well fitted to keep in enduring remembrance the memory of the estimable gentleman who for so many years occupied such a prominent position amongst us. The monument, which, properly speaking, is a military memorial, is in the form of an obelisk, standing 15ft. high. The upper column, or obelisk proper, stands upon a pedestal composed of three square blocks of stone, the centre block, which is the largest of the three, being faced with four polished marble panels, two of which bear inscriptions. Upon the stone above this is out a wreath of oak-leaves, emblematical of fame, while on the face of the obelisk itself are the deceased gentleman's armorial bearings. The monument, which is composed of fine Murphy's Creek stone, stands in an enclosure 24ft. by 21ft, surrounded by a stone wall, carrying an ornamental cast iron railing. 

The monument has been erected by Mr. John Petrie, contractor, whose work in all its branches is always of the best description. The artistic portion of the memorial—such as cutting the wreath, armorial bearings etc., which is the handiwork of Mr. F. Downs, one of Mr. Petrie's employees, has been very skilfully executed. 
The Queenslander (Brisbane), 31 January 1880.


Address:Frederick Street, Portion 13 Section 83 Grave 9/10, Toowong Cemetery, Toowong, 4066
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -27.4775
Long: 152.984444
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Government - Colonial
Designer:Mr John Petrie, Mr F. Downs (Petrie, QLD)


Front Inscription

Sir Maurice Charles O'Connell Knt..

Knight Commander of Isabella the Catholic.
Knight of the Second Class of San Fernando.
Knight Extraordinary of Charles III of Spain.

President of the Legislative Council of Queensland for more than eighteen years.

Four times Acting Governor of the Colony.

Born 15th January, 1812.  Died 23rd March, 1879.

This monument is erected by personal friends and admirers of his private character and of the ability, discretion and courtesy displayed by him in the high offices which he so long filled.

 " Well done thou good and faithful servant "

Source: ADB, MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au