INSTITUTION: The Bank of New South Wales which was on the corner of Brisbane and Bell streets in Ipswich, from 1863-1932.
INSTITUTION: The Bank of New South Wales which was on the corner of Brisbane and Bell streets in Ipswich, from 1863-1932. time past

Family behind Ipswich bank's success

THOMAS Barker was a writer for The Queensland Times with the pseudonyms of "Red Gum" and "Old Sport".

He wrote about the early history of Limestone/Ipswich in its early days of settlement.

The following is taken from one of his articles:

"Thomas Woolley of Newtown, being a resident of Ipswich since 1848, had taken five days sailing to get from Sydney to Brisbane, then he came on from Brisbane to Ipswich by the steamer Experiment.

Mr Woolley said: "We left Brisbane at 9am and reached Ipswich at 9pm.

"I have had to help assist in the working of the steamers pump.

"The first night I spend at Mr Martin Byrne's 'Steam Packet Hotel' at the corner of East and Bremer streets.

"Subsequently, Mr Woolley commenced sawing timber, the pit at which he worked was situated at the junction of Union and West streets.

"He had a unique experience during his long residence and was the only link in our midst with the early religious administration and the-then 'remote village of Ipswich' where there were no church buildings.

"Services were held in the original Court House which was a wooden building (erected by William Vowels in 1848) almost where today's post office in Brisbane St stands or in a private room in the-then primitive hotels of that period.

"In those far off days, the sparse population of Ipswich was not exactly neglected in so far as religious attention was concerned and the Roman Catholic pioneer priest of this district was Rev. Dean Hanly, who celebrated the first marriage in this town - that of Mr and Mrs Vowles."


Three generations of the one family served the first bank in Ipswich when it commenced its business in our town.

The family name was Craies and the bank was the bank of New South Wales, founded in 1853.

Firstly, there was William Craies, then Mr W.H. Craies and finally John Craies.

The Wales opened its business in a place known as Moore's property in East St, on the site of the old swimming baths on September 24, 1853.

The bank later transferred its business to premises on Brisbane St, then on October 12, 1863, the bank again moved into a substantial, two-storied brick building on the corner of Bell and Brisbane streets and finally moved again to the corner of Brisbane and East streets in 1932.

Mr W. Craies owned the property known as "Rockton" at East Ipswich and built on that land a substantial brick home.


The bank of Australasia was first established in Ipswich on November 7, 1853, on property later occupied by Cribb and Foote.

The Ipswich branch of this bank was established eight years prior to the Brisbane branch being opened.