Queensland is the second-largest and third-most-populous state in the Commonwealth of Australia. Situated in the north-east of the country, it is bordered by the Northern Territory, South Australia and New South Wales to the west, south-west, to the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and Pacific Ocean. Queensland has a population of 4,750,500, concentrated along the coast, the state is the worlds sixth largest sub-national entity, with an area of 1,852,642 km2. The capital and largest city in the state is Brisbane, Australias third largest city, often referred to as the Sunshine State, Queensland is home to 10 of Australias 30 largest cities and is the nations third largest economy. Tourism in the state, fuelled largely by its tropical climate, is a major industry. Queensland was first inhabited by Aboriginal Australians and Torres Strait Islanders, the first European to land in Queensland was Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon in 1606, who explored the west coast of the Cape York Peninsula near present-day Weipa.
In 1770, Lieutenant James Cook claimed the east coast of Australia for the Kingdom of Great Britain. The colony of New South Wales was founded in 1788 by Governor Arthur Phillip at Sydney, New South Wales at that time included all of what is now Queensland, Queensland was explored in subsequent decades until the establishment of a penal colony at Brisbane in 1824 by John Oxley. Penal transportation ceased in 1839 and free settlement was allowed from 1842, the state was named in honour of Queen Victoria, who on 6 June 1859 signed Letters Patent separating the colony from New South Wales. The 6th of June is now celebrated statewide as Queensland Day. Queensland achieved statehood with the Federation of Australia on 1 January 1901, the history of Queensland spans thousands of years, encompassing both a lengthy indigenous presence, as well as the eventful times of post-European settlement. The north-eastern Australian region was explored by Dutch and French navigators before being encountered by Lieutenant James Cook in 1770, the Australian Labor Party has its origin as a formal organisation in Queensland and the town of Barcaldine is the symbolic birthplace of the party.
June 2009 marked the 150th anniversary of its creation as a colony from New South Wales. The Aboriginal occupation of Queensland is thought to predate 50,000 BC, likely via boat or land bridge across Torres Strait, during the last ice age Queenslands landscape became more arid and largely desolate, making food and other supplies scarce. This led to the worlds first seed-grinding technology, warming again made the land hospitable, which brought high rainfall along the eastern coast, stimulating the growth of the states tropical rainforests. In February 1606, Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon landed near the site of what is now Weipa and this was the first recorded landing of a European in Australia, and it marked the first reported contact between European and Aboriginal Australian people. The region was explored by French and Spanish explorers prior to the arrival of Lieutenant James Cook in 1770. Cook claimed the east coast under instruction from King George III of the United Kingdom on 22 August 1770 at Possession Island, naming Eastern Australia, including Queensland, the Aboriginal population declined significantly after a smallpox epidemic during the late 18th century
Gladstone /ˈɡlædstən/ is a city in the Gladstone Region, Australia. It is approximately 550 km by road north of Brisbane and 100 km south-east of Rockhampton, situated between the Calliope and Boyne Rivers, Gladstone is home to Queenslands largest multi-commodity shipping port. Gladstone, together with Boyne Island and Tannum Sands, had an urban population of 49,248 at June 2015. This urban area covers 240.2 km2, Gladstone is the largest settlement within and the seat of the Gladstone Regional Council, which formed in 2008 amalgamating three former local government areas. Before European settlement, the Gladstone region was home of the Toolooa, Meerooni, in May 1770, the HM Bark Endeavour, under the command of James Cook, sailed by the entrance to Gladstone Harbour under the cover of darkness. Matthew Flinders, during his 1801–1803 circumnavigation of Australia, became the first recorded European to sight the harbour in August 1802. He named the harbour Port Curtis, after Admiral Roger Curtis, John Oxley conducted further exploration of the harbour and surrounding countryside in November 1823.
Oxley was dismissive of the region, noting the harbour was difficult to enter, the countryside was too dry, nevertheless, a colony was eventually established at Port Curtis. Colonel George Barneys expedition was eventful, on 25 January 1847, the Lord Auckland, carrying 87 soldiers and convicts, arrived off the southern entrance of Port Curtis and promptly ran aground on shoals off the southern tip of Facing Island. The settlers spent seven weeks on the island before being rescued by the supply ship Thomas Lowry and delivered the intended site of settlement, on 30 January at a proclamation ceremony, Barney was sworn in as Lieutenant Governor of the colony of North Australia. The convict settlement lasted barely two months, a change of government in Britain ordered the withdrawal of Barney and the settlers. However, interest in the region remained, by 1853, Francis MacCabe was surveying the site of a new town on the shores of Port Curtis. Maurice OConnell was appointed government resident the following year, resulting in an influx of free settlers as land became available throughout the region, in 1863, the town became a Municipality with Richard Hetherington elected Gladstones first mayor.
The fledgling town was named after the British Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone and has a 19th-century marble statue on display in its town museum, development of Gladstone was slow until 1893, when a meatworks was established at Parsons Point. On 2 March 1949, a cyclone hit Gladstone, doing extensive damage to the town. In 1963, Queensland Alumina Limited established its alumina refinery on the site of the old meatworks, Gladstones port facilities were expanded and the city launched into an era of industrial development and economic prosperity. William Robert Golding — builder, local government councillor, local government head, public servant, percival Albert Gourgaud — public servant, public servant head. Henry John Manning — company managing director, newspaper executive, frederick Woolnough Paterson — barrister, farmer, local government councillor, Member of Lower House, school teacher, soldier