Beerburrum, a rural township with State Forest on its eastern and western sides, is 55 km north of central Brisbane. It was named after Beerburrum Mountain, west of the township, the word thought to be a conjunction of two Kabi language Aboriginal words referring to parrot and mountain, or the sound of the King Parrot. Beerburrum was in Caloundra City prior to local government amalgamations in 2008.
When the North Coast railway was opened in 1890 a siding was installed at Beerburrum. About ten years later there was a small railway station, and in 1904 town allotments were surveyed but not occupied.
Beerburrum became a place of minor note when it was set aside for soldier-settler farming by the State Government in 1916. Over 24,000 ha were subdivided into more than 550 farm lots - the largest of Queensland's soldier-settler schemes. It was thought the hilly forest country suited to fruit, especially pineapple, growing. Notions of a village settlement informed the project, proximity to the North Coast railway line also a probable influence. Plans were made for surplus produce to be transported to a state cannery at Bulimba. The State Government also provided a training farm, a butcher's shop and a hall. Pugh's Queensland Directory (1925) also mentions the Beerburrum co-operative fruit preserving factory and the Settlement Store. There were Catholic, Anglican, Methodist and Presbyterian churches, but by that time the farming scheme was in serious trouble; all the buildings were removed to other places after the scheme was abandoned in 1929. As generally with soldier settlement schemes, allotments were too small, which together with lack of skill, capital and dependable markets caused failure.
Beerburrum's census populations summarise the settlement's history:
Much of the farm land was re-afforested with exotic softwoods. Beerburrum has a general store, a public hall, a primary school (1918) and a forestry office. The hall is the school of arts built before 1920. Beerburrum's census population in 2006 was 288.
Russell Hopkins, The Beerburrum story, Kippa-Ring, R Hopkins, 1984
Stan Tutt, ed, Pioneer days - stories and photographs of European settlement between the Pine and the Noosa Rivers, Caboolture, Caboolture Historical Society, 1974
Murray Johnson, '"Promises and pineapples": post-First World War soldier settlement at Beerburrum, Queensland, 1916-1929', Australian Journal of Politics and History, Vol 51, 4, 2005, pp 496-512.