Aramac, Queensland

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Aramac is a town which is the main centre of a shire of the same name. It is 500 km. west of Rockhampton, and the shire is bordered on the south by Barcaldine and the west by Longreach.

In the 1850s Robert Ramsay Mackenzie (later knighted and Premier of Queensland), explored the area for his pastoral interests. He carved "R. R. Mac" on a tree, which was found by the explorer William Landsborough in 1859. Landsborough adapted the initial to Aramac, giving the name to the creek on which the town is now situated.

The Aramac town reserve was gazetted on 26 June 1869, but not surveyed until 1875. Subdivided lots were offered for sale in 1879. That year coincided with the creation of a Divisional Board for Aramac, the genesis of local government. The Board's area was 50,750 sq. km., with jurisdiction over an estimated 841 persons and 123 ratepayers.

In 1882 the town of Muttaburra, north-west of Aramac, was added to the Divisional Board's area. The Board's area also included Longreach, to the west, which was on the railway line from Rockhampton, by-passing Aramac. In 1900 Longreach was given its own local government district, reducing Aramac's to 30,110 sq. km. Two years later further boundary changes in the directions of Barcaldine and Longreach reduced Aramac to one-third of its 1879 area.

Two years after the coming of local government The Australian Handbook (1881) described Aramac as -

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