How Did Kedron Get Its Name?

Did you know that Kedron’s name was from ‘the brook Kidron,’ a biblical name of a stream near Jerusalem? Here’s a little backstory on how this suburb got its name. 

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According to the Gossner Mission history, six young artisans, who had been turned away by the admission rules of all other mission societies, came to philanthropist Johannes Gossner in December 1836 wanting to be trained as lay missionaries.

In 1838, Gossner sent four of these German Lutheran missionaries to Zion Hill in Brisbane: Johann Gottfried Hausmann, Friedrich Franz, August Olbrecht, and Johann Gottfried Wagner.

gossner missionaries
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The group became the first free settlers in Queensland and also prompted Gossner to start a training institution.

The missionaries were settled in the Nundah area to minister to the locals, the Turrbals. These missionaries, who were granted around 500 acres of land along the creek, called it Kedron Brook, inspired by the Brook Kidron in the Bible.

kedron brook
Bridge over Kedron Brook, ca. 1925, (Photo credit: State Library of Queensland)

In the Bible, Kidron was a valley that divides Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. It was mentioned several times, such as when David went up to the Mount of Olives when Absalom betrayed him and based on the New Testament, Jesus crossed the valley many times travelling between Jerusalem and Bethany.

Kidron came from the Hebrew word qidron which was derived from the root qadar, “to be dark,” and may be meant as “dusky.”

Meanwhile, the first land sales at the suburb started in 1857. Some of the suburb’s early settlers were the Barron family, the Shaw family, Gallagher family, and Henry Craig who settled on land now occupied by Lutwyche Cemetery.

kedron lounge
Kedron Lounge (Photo credit: State Library of Queensland)

In 1862, Queensland’s first judge Justice Alfred Lutwyche purchased a 50-acre lot in the area and became one of the early residents of the suburb. He named his house Kedron Lounge, inspired by the name Kedron Brook.

It was only in the early 1890s when the current name was officially used, when local shopkeeper and postman John King adopted the name “Kedron.”

Kedron developed with the emergence of churches, schools, and parks by the 1900s. Today, Kedron remains popular among families, especially those who prefer living in leafy suburbs.