FEBRUARY 2023 would have provided a big year of celebrations for Home Hill—if only a major newspaper company had not decided that Home Hill did not deserve a newspaper anymore.
Back on February 8, 1923, the late Tom Jackson brought his desires to fruition when he published the first edition of The Home Hill Observer—a pioneering news source for the developing area on the southern side of the Burdekin River.
Tom had been an employee of The Delta Advocate when he decided to ride his horse across the river to see if the pioneers of the Home Hill District wanted a newspaper of their own—and the rest is history.
The start-up was not without its own trials and tribulations as, with many well-meaning helpers who assisted in installing the machinery into their first small building, the speed of the motor was too fast and when it was started up, the bed of the press went through the back wall of the building.
That was on February 1, 1923—hence the delay to February 8 for the first day of publication.
In an era of individual type pieces for each letter of each word in the paper, it meant everything had to be put back where they started, and work recommenced.
However, the paper existed for 90 years until it was decided by the company that The Observer should be incorporated into The Burdekin Advocate.
It then only existed for a few more years until The Advocate joined many other regional papers that were closed down— sad time for all of those regional areas as the paper was the backbone of life in those country towns.
However, that was one of the reasons The Home Hill News came into existence as the lack of its own newspaper meant the town was being ignored when it came to reporting of news events in Home Hill.
Through the Chamber of Commerce and the sponsored printing by Wilmar Sugar at Inkerman Mill, Home Hill is now one of the few towns that still has its own individual newspaper.