Burly Bullocky Bill Baxter

“Burly Bullocky Bill Baxter” – Brisbane Ekka 13th August 1952

In a bygone era, before the age of mechanisation, bullock teams, and to a lesser extent horse teams, were the means of hauling timber out of the scrub up or down some very steep tracks to the sawmills and the rafting grounds.  At times river crossings such as Hellhole needed to be negotiated and the bullockies were noted for their somewhat colourful language whilst urging along their large teams of bullocks.

The Courier Mail of 14th August 1952 reported “…Burly bullocky, Bill Baxter, of Dayboro admitted he swore several times under his breath in the Show ring yesterday.

One of Queensland’s few remaining bullock drivers he drove his team of 14 bullocks, worth £45 each, around the ring twice in the “Cavalcade of Transport”. 

  He is 45, has been a bullocky for 20 years, and is at present working his team on the Stanley River Dam project, moving heavy material about two miles a day across rough country.

“They were a bit frightened of the crowd, and were asking for a few good swear words, but I controlled myself” he said…”

William Baxter was born at Mt Mee on 16th March 1907.  He attended Laceys Creek State School.  On 24th February 1936 he married Hilda Edith Woodward.  They lived at Mt Mee and Laceys Creek before moving into Dayboro in 1949.  Bill Baxter died on 21st December 1954, aged 47 and was buried in Dayboro Cemetery.  They don’t come any more local than that.