US ARMY BRISBANE GENERAL DEPOT
BANYO, BRISBANE
DURING WW2

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visits since 14 April 2001

 

In 1942 the Army started a quarry at the left corner of Earnshaw Road and Tufnell Road as a Borrow Pit for another project. The quarry was closed in March 1943.

In April 1943, Lieutenant-Colonel Edward E. Rosendahl of the US Army Corps of Engineers designed and built the Brisbane General Depot at Banyo in Brisbane. There were 14 warehouses constructed for a costs of 30,000. A Repair Shed was the first building erected and by October 1943 eleven large warehouses 100 ft x 400 ft had been erected.


Photograph via Russell Miller and David Spethman

US Army Brisbane General Depot, Banyo, Brisbane

Earnshaw Road was closed during the construction phase and when it was later re-opened, the public had to go through two US Army checkpoints at each end of Earnshaw Road. Registration numbers and time of arrival and departures were noted by the US Army guards.

Earnshaw Road was widened by 24 feet by US Engineers in March 1944. It was then finally bitumened in May 1945. By June 1945 there were 75 buildings erected at the Army Depot in three areas.


Photograph via Russell Miller and David Spethman

The US Army Brisbane General Depot at Banyo is located at right bottom of the photograph.
There are hotspot hyperlinks on this photograph for other nearby military locations.

The original Brisbane General Depot covered a large area, significantly more than today's Army's Store Depot. It included the land where the Golden Circle Cannery is now located. There were two open earthen floor storage areas located at the site of today's Golden Circle Cannery. There was also a motor repair shed in that general area. 

The 338th Ordnance Company operated a motor pool at the Brisbane General Depot at Banyo.


Photo: from Erv Anderson, 338th Ordnance Company

The 338th Ordnance Company's Repair Shop at Banyo

 


Photo: from Erv Anderson, 338th Ordnance Company

Ordnance Service Centre at Banyo. Their motto was " Keep 'em Rollin' "

 

A railway siding with an earthen loading platform was built near today's Bindha Railway Station. The timber Administration building was erected on the Cannery side of Earnshaw Road.

 


Photo: from Erv Anderson, 338th Ordnance Company

Tented area at US Army Brisbane General Depot at Banyo

The land on the southern side of the intersection of Tufnell Road and Earnshaw Road was used as a Depot Troops Camp where 135 enlisted men lived in tents and 44 buildings were erected for:-

- officer's huts
- bathrooms
- toilets
- Headquarters building
- infirmary
- Postal Exchange (PX)
- recreation hut
- supply shop
- canvas movie theatre
- four kitchens
- two mess halls

On the lower ground below this were located:-

- 3 warehouses
- maintenance office
- workshop
- 4 open storage areas

In the third area located between Bellare Ave., Crockford Rd. and Earnshaw Rd. there was a large open vehicle storage area.

In February 2003, the Australian Army placed 30 hectares of land at Northgate on Crockford Street and Earnshaw Road for sale. It was in two blocks, one being 10.2 hectares and the other 20.6 hectares. One of the parcels of land is opposite the Golden Circle Cannery.

On 17 October 1945, the US Army handed over the site to the Australian Army. The site was then valued at 191,300. Before the Australian Army could buy the whole site, the Brisbane City Council had sold the block that it owned to the Committee of Direction on Fruit Marketing for a future cannery. This contained the two vehicle storage areas and the important rail siding. The COD agreed to lease these areas to the Australian Army for 5 years.

On 16 February 1950 the 72 acre site was purchased by the Australian Army and renamed as the Banyo Ordnance Depot. Today, the Banyo Stores Depot is a support base for the Queensland Logistic Support Group.

 


 

A friend of Adamas Jorgensen purchased a Harley Davidson motorcycle from an Army Disposals Auction held at the Banyo Army Depot in the early 1980's. The motorcycle was sold 'as is', unassembled in crates with U.S. Army stencilling. Where did the Army 'get' these cycles from? Adamas believes this links into the story that the 'authorities' have access to 'unlimited' amounts of military-issue vehicles and 'what-not' that is apparently stored/stockpiled in disused mines under the Darling Downs.

There are also stories of aircraft engines being buried at Banyo Army Camp.

 

I am after information on a Robert Hill who was from
West Virginia, USA. He was based at Banyo during WWII.

 

Can anyone help me with any information
on the Banyo Army Camp during WW2?

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank Adamas Jorgensen and James R. Anderson for their assistance with this home page.

BCC Northgate Ward Home page on the Banyo Army Stores

 

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 Peter Dunn 2003

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This page first produced 14 April 2001

This page last updated 02 September 2008