Theodore is a town that is located on the Dawson River on the Leichardt Highway about 220km West of Bundaberg.
Theodore has population of around the 450 mark.
The town’s history and main business is aligned to coal mining, alot of employees of the mines live in Theodore and also in other surrounding towns in this area too, this area incorporates the Dawson Mine in the Dawson Valley, this mine site has been going from the 1960’s, it was the first mine that exported coal to Japan.
The town was named in honour of the politician Ted Theodore who was the Premier of Queensland from 1919 until 1925, he was also the Treasurer of Australia from the year 1929 until 1931, originally before this the town was called Castle Creek which was the name of one of the streams that runs through the town.
In the beginning in Theodore there was a settlers and visitor centre, a public town hall which had a cinema in it, the irrigation commission office, a few shops, sawmill and the electricity generation plant, the town was created to be the main centre for the irrigation scheme which was planned to have lots of farms creating produce.
Mid 1920’s the railway line from Baralaba to the Theodore opened.
The State Primary School opened in 1924.
Following the town being built to be the main centre for the irrigation scheme the first farms were released in 1926 with irrigated and dry farm lots being released.
Weirs were then built on the Dawson River and tributaries for a gravitational channel system, further development was planned with the proposed construction of the Nathan Dam, this dam was never built.
A cheese factory opened and operated in Theodore from 1942 until 1952.
Just after this in 1961 the town’s population peaked at over 700 people and during this year the Hospital opened also.
In the town there is plenty of businesses operating outside of the mining, there is a sawmill and also in the area there’s cotton, beef and grain production
In town there is a Hospital, State Primary School, Local History Museum and Information centre, Racecourse, Golf/Bowling Clubs, Churches and of course many local shops.
The Theodore Hotel is a co-operative that is owned by the community and as part of its operation it contributes profits to many local community groups.
The Nathan Dam proposal was again revisited, it was again delayed in 2005 by an appeal on environmental grounds.
Theodore also on the eve of 2011 suffered at the hands of major flooding which caused lots of damage to the town and surrounding areas, during this time the town was surrounded by water the town folk were evacuated with many businesses and houses flooded, alot of the crops in the area were lost during this flood too and more businesses and houses after the rain continued into February 2011.
Modern Theodore offers all the luxuries of a busy thriving township, the streets are lined with palms and there are fish to be caught in the Glebe Weir and also water skiing, the Theodore Folk Museum captures more than 100 years of history, lots of picnic grounds, lookouts and scenic drives and the Hotel where you know with every mouthful you are giving something back to this community.
So this small little town of Theodore has had its share of highs and lows, not only in the population, but it still continues to flourish and grow as a community and I’m sure there is more history to write for this town.