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Breathing life into history

Posted: 3pm 29 Apr 2021

Caboolture’s first postmaster has again taken his place at the post office counter – but not in a way you might expect.

When visitors press the bell for service, William Geddes pops up from behind the counter to tell his story and the history of his town.

Mr Geddes moved into the building, now at Caboolture Historical Village, in 1869, so the vision presented to ‘customers’ is obviously not the man himself but a strikingly realistic hologram.

It was unveiled by Caboolture Historical Village on April 29 and is the result of about eight months’ work by the historical society and Sydney-based firm LaserVision.

New chapter in history book

Caboolture Historical Society President Roger Dunstan hopes it will be a huge attraction.

“It’s a new direction for us. This is the start of something. It’s relating more of the history to the visitors in a visual and verbal way. Having a “real person” here telling the story is just brilliant,” Roger says.

“This is the first one and we hope to have more in the future. It’s a major change for the village and historical society. It’s what we needed.”

The society’s grants officer Stuart Eden says the project cost $20,000 and was possible after it received Arts Queensland funding.

“We’re very happy with the result. It was all done remotely during the lockdown. The first time they came to the village was to install it,” Stuart says.

He says when the society first decided to pursue the idea, members were keen to enhance an already striking display, not detract from it.

It was the perfect location for a hologram, with the right lighting and floorspace to make it work.

Compelling story brought to life

“We then decided the story had to relate to a real person and be historically accurate. Mr Geddes was the first postmaster and his story is fascinating,” Stuart explains.

He owned 100s of acres around Caboolture and donated the land St Lawrence’s Church was built on.

The “post office” building at Caboolture Historical Village was the annex of the original building and the spot where coaches pulled up to collect and unload the mail.

Stuart says there are plans to continue enhancing exhibits at the village.

“If we can do one or two of these things a year, in the right place with the right story – not just for entertainment – it will broaden the demographic of people who come here,” he says.

“It will add a new dimension for all ages.”

Caboolture Historical Society is at 280 Beerburrum Rd, Caboolture. Visit historicalvillage.com.au

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