Isisford is currently a 2 star accredited Queensland Tidy Town. You can tell us what you think by voting in the poll – you can give a 1 to 5 star rating.
Isisford is located in the Longreach Region in Central West Queensland, on the Barcoo River, approximately 120 kilometres south east of the town of Longreach and 1,089 kilometres north west of Brisbane.
With a small population of 262 (this figure has never surpassed 300) – Isisford was established in the 1870s.
When visiting the Longreach Region, it is recommended that if you are travelling extensively throughout the Outback that you are equipped with a satellite phone and a UHF radio – once you travel west or south of Boulia, there is no mobile phone coverage at all, except via satellite.
Local Government Information
The three pillars of the Longreach Region's prosperity are the agriculture and tourism sectors together with the region's appeal as a destination of choice for outback living. The residents of the Longreach Region are proud of their communities and passionate about their future. This is reflected in our vision for the Longreach Region as outlined in the recently adopted Corporate Plan 2017-2027.
The town has an 18-hole golf course, swimming pool, tennis court, museum, post office, two hotels, fuel outlet, library and internet facilities. Camping is permitted at the Barcoo Weir and Oma Waterhole, with showers and toilets.
The Isisford area was explored by Thomas Mitchell, in 1846 and the following year by Edmund Kennedy, both reporting favourably on the district’s potential. In 1856, Augustus Gregory passed through the area in his search for the missing party of Ludwig Leichhardt. Finding the area in drought, Gregory left unimpressed, later stating as Surveyor-General that he could not recommend expenditure on the development of central western Queensland.
Regardless, numerous pastoral aspirants took up holdings over the next decades, beginning with John Charles Ellis, who in April 1866 established the Portland Downs run.
C. Lumley Hill followed Ellis in January 1867, taking up Isis Downs, named after the upper reaches of the Thames River, England.
Continuing pastoral settlement encouraged hawkers into the district and misfortune of town of these early traders led to the development of the Isisford township. Attempting to cross the Barcoo, brothers William and James Whitman broke an axle and decided to settle on the banks of the river. A village soon developed, the siblings themselves erecting a hotel, butcher’s shop, store and saddlery among others.
Originally named “Whittown” (or Wittown) by the Whittman’s in self-testament to their founding enterprises, the name was changed to Isisford in 1878, when a town was surveyed based on the presence of a river ford and the settlement’s proximity to Isis Downs station, 20 km east of the town.