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The Coronation Lamp

  • 600750
  • Morgan Street, Mount Morgan


Also known as
The Coronation Light; Boer War Memorial
State Heritage
Register status
Date entered
21 October 1992
Monuments and memorials: Memorial/monument
8.6 Creating social and cultural institutions: Commemorating significant events
Jenks, Arthur
Construction period
1902–1947, The Coronation Lamp (1902 - 1947)
Historical period
1900–1914 Early 20th century


Morgan Street, Mount Morgan
Rockhampton Regional Council
-23.64568484, 150.38453946


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Criterion AThe place is important in demonstrating the evolution or pattern of Queensland’s history.

War Memorials are important in demonstrating the pattern of Queensland's history as they are representative of a recurrent theme that involved most communities throughout the state. They provide evidence of an era of widespread Australian patriotism and nationalism, particularly during and following the First World War. The monuments manifest a unique documentary record and are demonstrative of popular taste in the inter-war period.

The Boer War Memorial is an important Queensland monument. The memorial was constructed at an early phase of the history of war memorials in the state and is one of the few memorials in Queensland to commemorate the involvement and death of Queensland soldiers in the Boer War of 1899-1902.

Criterion BThe place demonstrates rare, uncommon or endangered aspects of Queensland’s cultural heritage.

After the First World War, memorials were erected in most Queensland towns, however in 1902, when this memorial was unveiled, they were still quite rare. This particular memorial is also rare as the first known memorial in Queensland to the Boer War and as the only memorial to commemorate both the Boer War and the Coronation of King Edward VII. As a lamp, it is an unusual type of memorial.

Criterion EThe place is important because of its aesthetic significance.

The memorial and its setting contribute to the aesthetic qualities of the townscape. The memorial is of aesthetic significance for its high level of workmanship and design.

Criterion GThe place has a strong or special association with a particular community or cultural group for social, cultural or spiritual reasons.

It has a strong and continuing association with the community as evidence of the impact of a major historic event and as the focal point for the remembrance of that event.


The Coronation Lamp and Boer War Memorial was erected on the 26 June 1902 as part of Mount Morgan's coronation celebrations. The memorial was commissioned by the Municipal Council and is thought to be designed by Arthur Jenks who, at the time, was Clerk of Works for the erection of the Technical College. As well as commemorating the coronation of King Edward VII, it also honours the Mount Morgan troopers who fell in South Africa fighting under the Union Jack. It originally stood at the intersection of Morgan and East Streets, and although known as the Coronation Lamp, the lamp eventually became the site of Anzac Day celebrations, the first in 1916 and also of victory celebrations at the end of the First World War.

In 1947, the Coronation Lamp was relocated to Anzac Park when the main street was bituminised.

The township of Mount Morgan grew with the establishment of what was to become the richest single gold mine in the world. Although small mining claims had occurred previously, in 1882 the three Morgan Brothers pegged claims which encompassed most of the mountain top. In July of the same year, they formed a partnership with three Rockhampton businessmen. They became extremely prosperous before selling out to their partners in 1886 who then formed the Mount Morgan Gold Mining Company Limited. The township quickly developed, setting up a much needed infrastructure. The three partners continued the company business until 1929 when a new company was formed after many miners disputes. The mine continued to produce gold and copper until it closed in 1990.

At the time of the Boer War, the citizens of Mount Morgan showed a great deal of patriotism. The local children were encouraged to donate pennies to be melted down to form the huge Mafeking bell which originally hung in the Town Hall.

The Mount Morgan memorial was constructed at an early phase of the history of war memorials in the state. After the First World War, the construction of war memorials was prolific. Australian war memorials are valuable evidence of imperial and national loyalties, at the time not seen as conflicting; the skills of local stonemasons, metalworkers and architects; and of popular taste.

Although there are now many different types of memorials throughout Queensland there are few Boer Memorials and only one known one in the form of a lamp. The memorial at Mount Morgan was originally a gas lamp but has since been converted to electricity.


The Boer War Memorial is situated in Anzac Park facing West Street in Mount Morgan. The park is on a sloping site with the Mount Morgan Gold and Copper Works in the background. It stands close to the road and is surrounded by mature trees. A sign which displays the name of the park is located directly in front of the memorial.

Also located in the park, directly behind the Boer War Memorial is the First World War Memorial.

The painted concrete memorial comprises a concrete pedestal surmounted by a lamp. The pedestal sits on a base capped with a cyma recta moulding. The pedestal itself has recessed sections with mouldings to each face. The front and rear faces have marble plates with cut and blackened lettering commemorating the local men who fell in the Boer War and celebrating the Coronation. The dado is capped by a large entablature comprising a frieze and cornice of multiple steps and mouldings. The cornice is surmounted by two more steps which form a base for the lamp.

The lamp is a cast iron gas standard, approximately 15 feet high. It is fluted and culminates in an Egyptian capital. Extending from the capital are two iron rods on either side and two fluorescent lights from the top.

Image gallery


Location of The Coronation Lamp within Queensland
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last updated
20 January 2016
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