Charlotte Street, Cooktown

News of the day

Townsville Daily Bulletin, Thursday 23 April 1931, page 7


Where wheels of Cobb and Co. once rolled, and now Angora kidlings bleat

Where passed fully fifty tons of gold,

Well crowned and drained winds Charlotte street.

Here proudly coachmen cracked their whips,

Or bantered with the armed escort,

With loaded pistole on the hips

To guard the precious freights to port.


On either side and round about

Where now re-conquering bush-growths creep,

Where roy’string echoes once rang out,

Stark mould'ring pubs and mansions peep.

No more the merry chanties ring,

Nor Jewelled Maud repeat her joke,

Where birds again ate carolling.

And nightly calls the lone mopoke.


At 10 p.m. still sounds the toll

Of curfew bell, and once a week

Old pensioners to get the dole,

From rustic humpies by the creek,

As if from out forgotten years

Unhurriedly come down their ways—

The remnants of the pioneers,

Brave stalwarts of the roaring days.


From here the staunch and free of heart,

Well trained in many fields afar.

Went forth to make another start,

The lure of gold their guiding star.

And here shrewd thinkers planned and schemed

With many a cunning trick they'd learned,

While Bacchus on his altar beamed

To win their 'pokes' when they returned.


Full twenty thousand Mongols too,

Each with his bambooed dual load,

To Palmerville went jogging through

All slaves to mandarins who rode.

And often, where the wind storms moan

And tropic rains work ravages,

The laggards fell to spears well thrown

To make a feast for savages.


The roaring days will come again.

With gold that will the world astound,

While rills and rivers sift the grain

There must be reefs still to be found.

Till then, far from the beaten ways,

By Charlotte Street the dingoes lurk,

Historic Cooktown sleeps— and waits.

Disturbed not by the din of work.


Cooktown. 'UNCLE DAN.'


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