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Mission Beach Historical Society seeks information on the history of local street names

17/September/2021
Street signs in Mission Beach with interesting names

The Mission Beach Historical Society is reaching out to Cassowary Coast residents for information regarding local street names. One of the Committee Members, Dr Penelope Goward, has started a project on the street names in Mission Beach and the Society would be delighted if the public would please share their stories about the names and any old photographs. 

If you would like to contribute, please contact Dr Penelope Goward on 0428 505 368.

The Mission Beach Historical Society is dedicated to collecting, preserving, exhibiting, and interpreting all of Mission Beach’s history to ensure that future generations may fully see and appreciate the rich heritage of our community.

The Society began informally in 2000 when a small group of residents explored the history of the Mission Beach State School to celebrate its fiftieth anniversary. A teacher and a teacher-librarian worked with two enthusiastic locals to research the school story and published a book to commemorate the occasion. 

In 2018, Trudy Tschui, a history enthusiast, revived interest in the history of Mission Beach and started a Facebook page, Mission Beach Memories, which soon built up a strong following. 

In 2020, when Trudy was elected as Division 3 Councillor for the Cassowary Coast Region, she affirmed her commitment to ensuring Mission Beach had an official historical society. After canvassing local residents in September 2020, who were highly positive, she called a second meeting at the Mission Arts Centre, on 14 October 2020. At this meeting, a group comprising of Trudy Tschui, Margaret Remilton, Judy Heath, Diane Bull, Dr Valerie Boll, Sandal Hayes, Sue Foley, and Ken Gray agreed to form a committee. Ms Trish Ernst, President of the Innisfail and District Historical Society attended in support of Trudy and endorsed the newly formed society offering the fledgling group the opportunity to be a branch of the Innisfail organisation. 

At the first meeting of the Society, on 14 October 2020, Trudy Tschui was Chair and Dr Valerie Boll was elected President, with Ken Gray as Secretary. Margaret Remilton, Judy Heath, Sue Foley, Diane Bull, and Sandal Hayes all became inaugural Committee Members. 

The Society chose its top priority as capturing oral histories of elderly long-term residents. The geographical area for the Mission Beach Historical Society follows that of the Djiru Country, which includes the Mission Beach villages from Carmoo to Midgereebar, plus two villages that are not strictly part of the Mission Beach district, El Arish and Merryburn, but it does not include East Feluga. The committee has ten people including two researchers with doctoral degrees, who advise the society on ethics, security of storage of data, and other data collection methods. Elder and Traditional Owner, Leonard Andy, represents and advises the group on all matters relating to the Djiru people.

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