History: Mary’s Tree

Mary Hart. Image supplied.

Mary Hart was a member of the Wonglepong branch of the Country Women’s Association (CWA).
She attended the QCWA Annual Conference in 1951 when the country of study was Mexico.
The delegates there were given a seedling of a Mexican pine.
The Wonglepong members gave their seedling to the Canungra town and it was planted in D J Smith
Memorial Park and has survived all these years.
The tree has needed some special care over the years, but it is lit up with light decorations at Christmas time, bringing great joy to all.
Mary Hart was the great granddaughter of Hugh Mahony.
He walked from Ipswich in 1862 and crossed over Biddaddaba Creek into Canungra near
Mt Witheren.
Hugh and his fourteen year old son, Thomas, came down Canungra Creek felling and initialling (HM) on red cedar logs as they went.
This meant that, when these logs were washed down stream in the next big flood, Hugh would
claim these as his logs when they were to be milled. Hugh hid his gear in the scrub and then walked back to Ipswich.
When, in 1869, a suitable flood did occur, most of the felled logs went no further than the flat adjacent
to the creek in Wonglepong.
Hugh then employed men to ‘square’ the logs (giving them flat sides) making them easier to
carry by bullock wagon to Logan Village.
Once there, the logs were loaded onto the boat to sail into Moreton Bay and up the Brisbane
River to timber agents.
Most of the cedar timber was shipped to England by sea.
A few early settlers in the local area had houses made of those 18inch/45cm wide red cedar boards.
Hugh returned a few years later and settled on land downstream at Surveyor’s Pocket (Wonglepong) where he developed a timber industry, sending the red cedar to England. Hugh hauled the logs to his property using bullock teams.
Mary was Thomas Mahony’s granddaughter, related to the family still residing in Canungra.