Warra, a small rural town on the Warrego Highway, western Darling Downs, is 50 km north-west of Dalby. It was named after the Warra Warra pastoral run.

In 1868 the Western railway line reached Dalby and seven years later the government approved its extension north-westwards. This announcement probably prompted Richard Best to settle at Warra in 1875, and he later opened the first hotel, post office and store. The railway to Warra was opened two years later. The families of railway workers and selectors had enough children for a school to be opened in 1881.

In 1903-06 the district had a large influx of farm settlers, many from Victoria, when Joshua Thomas Bell (son of Joshua Peter Bell, former owner of the grand Jimbour homestead) promoted farm settlement in the Warra district. Less than ten years later a mine was opened west of Warra, supplying coal for the Western line locomotives. The township had two hotels, three butchers, three other stores and a saw mill (1914), and the district was farmed by nearly 110 selectors and graziers. The mine was worked until 1919 when water seepage caused its closure.

Following the mine closure, farm lands were infested with prickly pear west of Warra. Population was nearly halved during the 1920s, not recovering until after eradication of the plant pest and lifting of the 1930s financial Depression. Soldier settlement after World War II brought Warra another population influx. In the 1960s, however, there was a decline in the town's commercial activity because of its proximity to Dalby.

Warra has a hotel, a racecourse, a primary school and a rural supplies store. Its census populations have been:

Census DatePopulation

Centenary 1881-1981: Warra State School, Warra, Warra Centenary Committee, 1981

A. L. Williams, Wambo Shire Centenary 1879-1979, Dalby, Wambo Shire Council, 1979


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