Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

,CyCoal King' Left a Big Legacy; Pioneer of Mining Made His Mark on Our Region

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

,CyCoal King' Left a Big Legacy; Pioneer of Mining Made His Mark on Our Region

Article excerpt

Byline: Times Past with Beryl Johnston

BORN in Cardiganshire, South Wales, on the December 20, 1832, the Hon Lewis Thomas, Member Legislative Council, died at his magnificent home C[pounds sterling]BrynhyfrydC[yen] (Pleasant Hill), Blackstone near Ipswich on February 1913.

In recording his death TJ Barker of The Queensland Times wrote, C[pounds sterling]Probably there was no more interesting career in Queensland than that of Mr Thomas. Perhaps his most striking characteristic was his remarkable perseverance Co a trait that has enabled the British race to do wonders. It was undoubtedly this element in his character which, in a large degree, was responsible for his success in coal mining.

C[pounds sterling]His determination, together with his enterprise and business instincts, ensured his success and from the opening of the coal seams under his control, his material advancement was rapid Co indeed for many years he was known locally as CyThe Coal King'.C[yen]

Lewis Thomas married in South Wales in July 1859 and about a fortnight later left Wales to seek his fortune in Australia.

Prior to arriving in the Ipswich area he worked on the gold diggings in Victoria, but in 1861 decided to move to Queensland.

At Redbank he worked in coal mining until he became the successful tenderer for half the contract of putting the railway tunnel through the Little Liverpool Range, which became known as the Great Victoria Tunnel.

He then decided to return to coal and commenced operations in Blacksoil in conjunction with Mr J. Malbon Thompson, a well-known Ipswich solicitor, alderman and member of parliament who for many years resided at CyCothill' near Silkstone.

From 1866 until the 1880s the pit they opened was the famous Aberdare coal mine.

In view of the possibility of the extension of the railway line from Ipswich to Brisbane, Mr Thomas opened up a new mine at Dinmore in 1870.

He became a very prosperous man and some 18 years after his marriage, his C[pounds sterling]brideC[yen] arrived at Bundamba in July 1877 to join him. …

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