Some pubs in the outback like the Blue Heeler Hotel in Kynuna, Qld have very narrow doors, we just assumed that people were smaller in the old days. But hell no, it was to stop you from riding your horse into the bar. Spoil sports.
The Blue Heeler Hotel has been here since the 1860’s when it was a Cobb and Co coaching stop and the gnarly old floor boards look like they’re original. If that’s not enough this hotel was where the shearers celebrated during the great shearer’s strike of 1894 when they set fire to the woolshed at Dagworth station, which was also the basis of the Waltzing Matilda story and song by Banjo Paterson. The owner of Dagworth station just happened to die in the bar of the Blue Heeler Hotel sometime later.
To cap off this illustrious history, R.M Williams the legendary bushman and bushman’s outfitter built a fireplace in the pub to celebrate its centenary.
The shearer’s strike prompted the founding of the Australian Labor Party, Waltzing Matilda became the nation’s favourite song and unofficial anthem and the brand founded by R. M Williams still makes quality clothing. This pub is the birthplace of a nation!
Blue Heeler Hotel, Kynuna
“It has been widely accepted that Waltzing Matilda is probably based on the following story:
In September 1894, on a station called Dagworth (north of Winton). Some striking shearers fired their rifles and pistols in the air, setting fire to the woolshed. The owner of Dagworth Homestead and three policemen gave chase to a man named Samual Hoffmeister – also known as “French(y)”. Rather than be captured Hoffmeister shot and killed himself at the Combo Waterhole. “*
And to quote the song “Up rode the squatter mounted on his thoroughbred, up rode the troopers one, two, three…”
Refer also my earlier post on the Combo Waterhole: https://itchingforhitching.com/2015/11/18/waltzing-matilda/