Caskey Boer War Memorial

Location of Caskey Boer War Memorial

Toowong Cemetery, 124 Birdwood Terrace
Toowong QLD 4066

The Caskey Monument at Toowong, [unusually, a Government sponsored memorial to an individual], is important as the first known South African War memorial in Queensland and a model for later monuments in this state.

The monument, which consists of an obelisk on a pedestal, is executed in Helidon sandstone and stands 5 metres high. The white sandstone obelisk is draped in a shroud. A sword is carved in relief on the front face. Below it is a quill, a tribute to Caskey's academic achievements. On the west face are crossed tennis racquets and on the east, crossed cricket bats, acknowledging his sporting interests. This theme is continued with a football on the front of the pedestal.

The pedestal also features recessed slabs of Italian marble on all sides, flanked by columns of brown sandstone. The front slab bears a leaded inscription. The monument is surrounded by a sandstone retaining wall.

(Source: Queensland Cultural Heritage Register)

Inscription

Refer to additional images.

Conflicts commemorated
South Africa War, 1899–1902
Memorial type
Column/obelisk/pillar
Additional information

This monument was erected at Toowong Cemetery in May 1902 in memory of Lieutenant Lachlan John Caskey, who was killed in action at Makari Drift, Caledon River, South Africa on 27 September 1901. He was 31 years old.

Caskey was a member of the 5th Queensland Imperial Bushmen and, like all Australian troops participating in the South African [Boer] War of 1899–1902, was a volunteer. As a member of the QIB he was under British command, and his pay was issued by the colonial government at an English cavalryman's rate.

The Caskey Monument is the first known South African War monument to be erected in Queensland. A design competition was won by prominent monumental mason William Busby, a public committee was established to raise the £70 construction cost, and the project was sponsored by the State Government. Caskey was a sportsman and school teacher, and his monument was unveiled by the Minister of Public Instruction.

The Caskey Monument is one of only four known South African War monuments in Brisbane, the others being the Berry and MacFarlane Monument [1902] at Sherwood [600292], the Anning Monument [1903] at Hemmant [600220] and the South African War Memorial [1919] in Anzac Square [600060]. The design of the Caskey Monument, particularly the obelisk and draped shroud, appears to have been the model for the others. Another monument to Caskey, erected near Allora where he had taught, has been lost.
(Source: Queensland Cultural Heritage Register)

Recorded by
QLD War Memorial Register/Shirley and Trevor McIvor
Date recorded
20 April 2009

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