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The Douglas Shire Historical Society

The Douglas Shire Historical Society meets on the first Monday of every month, alternately in Port Douglas and Mossman at 2pm. We visit historic sites and hear presentations on local history. We encourage our members to research and present their findings or to share old photos.

Join the Society for a subscription of $10 p.a. or $15 for a family. To download a membership form click here for all other enquiries click here.

What the Society does:

  • Operates the Court House Museum, Port Douglas (you are welcome to join the roster as a volunteer attendant)
  • Conducts historic walks for groups along the heritage trail in Port Douglas
  • Researches and publishes local history books and bulletins
  • Collects local history papers, historic photographs and oral histories
  • Prepares and mounts poster displays for schools and the community
  • Promotes signposted historic walks in Port Douglas, Mossman and Daintree Village

Our latest projects are:

  • Researching the location and recording details of old farm machinery in our area
  • A database of graves in the Port Douglas cemetery is in preparation
  • A guided walk through the Mossman cemetery is being researched

Resources & Credits

Many of the images contained on this site are from the State Library of Queensland, which holds the world's largest collection of photographic material relating to the history and development of Queensland and are credited as such.

Other reference sources are suggested for research:

Warning. This site may contain the names and images of Aboriginal and Islander people now deceased.
It also contains links to sites that may offend some viewers

Map of the region

Latest News


Monday 1st August at 2pm at Mossman Support Services, Mill Street

All welcome. You don't have to be a member to attend.

Guest speaker Janet Goodall will relate stories of her local family, the McCoists.

Afternoon tea provided



  OPENING TIMES: 10AM - 1PM Tuesdays, Thursdays Saturdays and Sundays.

Come and chat to our knowledgeable volunteers.

There is a Covid-safe plan in place with a maximum of 10 people. 

Models of Ellen Thomson, John Harrison, Senior Constable Denis Carey and Police Magistrate Michael Fanning are wearing authentic costumes

No food or drink inside please



Many publications are available for sale from the Publications tab on this site, and there are also various fascinating articles and time lines here

You can email or msg any questions you have about our history too.

This is the time to improve your knowledge of the history of where you live.

The museum is wheelchair accessible with a portable ramp kindly donated by John and Jocelyn White

Like our Facebook page.


Visit the Port Douglas
Court House Museum

Wharf Street, Port Douglas
(beside the Police Station)

Open Tuesdays, Thursdays,
Saturdays and Sundays
From 10am to 1pm

Click to download brochure

Portable wheelchair ramp available, please ask the volunteer on duty.

Society's Awards