Bushman donated land to Redlands for $1

I wonder if the cabbage knows
He is less lovely than the Rose;
Or does he squat in smug content,
A source of noble nourishment;
Or if he pities for her sins
The Rose who has no vitamins;
Or if the one thing his green heart knows —
That self-same fire that warms the Rose?

— Affinity by Rickety Kate

Not everyone capitulates to the developers.
KIRSTIN Boyle wrote a book while still at school called, A Tribute to Jack Venman: In honour of a true bushman, which she published in the late 1990s. She began her research project as a Year 9 student at Alexandra Hills State High School, when she was required to write about a local identity who inspired her.

“I did the assignment and I was so interested in Jack that I decided to keep going,” Kirstin said.

“I wrote the book while I was still studying at high school”.

Kirstin collected the Venman memorabilia during her years of research and said she recently decided Jack’s belongings would be best housed at the museum.

Jack Venman (1911-1994) is the man after whom the Venman Bushland National Park at Mount Cotton is named.

Kirstin’s book documents him as a station hand and engineer who bought the original 255 acres of bushland in 1954 but whose work repeatedly took him away throughout Queensland and the Northern Territory.

It wasn’t until 1970 that he was finally able to settle on his land for good.

When a finance company that planned subdivisions in the Mount Cotton area offered him 48.6 hectares of land at Tallebudgera in exchange for his land, he turned the company down and ultimately sold his property to the Albert Shire Council for $1 in a bid to ensure it would be preserved as bushland.

‘Our mob’ enjoying Venman’s National Park on Easter 2019 Photo: Lachlan Hurse

We walked through the park and crossed Tingalpa Creek derived from Tingulpa,an Aboriginal expression referring to a fat kangaroo.

Tingalpa Creek Photo: Lachlan Hurse

Europeans settled the area in 1824. Early land uses including cattle grazing, timber and cropping.

The property is now a national park and, as one of the largest remaining areas of eucalypt forest in the coastal lowlands near Brisbane, it is an important habitat for native wildlife.

Kirstin said she would like to see everybody who has Jack Venman memorabilia donate it to the museum.

“It (the memorabilia) will mean more to the community that way,” she said.

“I’m aware that a lot of his friends have memorabilia and it would be nice if it were all kept together in one collection.”

See Call for more to donate Venman memorabilia by LYN UHLMANN in the Redland Times.

One thought on “Bushman donated land to Redlands for $1

  1. It appears that Redlands Museum has material relating to Jack Venman.

    Here’s a link to their a/v recording on the JV Reserve –
    https://ehive.com/collections/4500/objects/784693/jack-venman-national-park-reserve-digital-videorecording-museum-copy-loops – but its not available online – still, its a good reason to go to the museum!

    Their collection would be fascinating.

    The book on JV would be good too. The 50th year anniversary of the donation is coming up in 2020-21 – I wonder if they plan to do anything to mark the occasion?

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