CARVED STORY: Robert Langton carved the wood of the Ration Shed table to tell the story of the Indigenous tribes who came to Cherbourg.
CARVED STORY: Robert Langton carved the wood of the Ration Shed table to tell the story of the Indigenous tribes who came to Cherbourg. Jessica McGrath

Cherbourg's history revealed in woodwork

HAND-CARVED stories are etched into Cherbourg's latest wooden artwork to ensure the indigenous community remembers their past.

Cherbourg resident Robert 'Rocko' Langton finished carving a table for outside the ration shed at the end of the year.

He put old railway sleepers together, sanded and carved the wood with an electric grinder and chainsaw in between his work schedule over the space of more than three months.

"I also put a story to it to represent the first tribes who came to Cherbourg,” he said.

Mr Langton carved animal totems into the top of the table to represent the different tribes who came to Cherbourg from all over Queensland.

"Crocodiles is the far north, the barramundi as well, the Western Murray is the emu and the porcupine,” he said.

In the centre of the table is the owl, representing the Wakka Wakka people whose traditional land stretches across most of the North and South Burnett.

The table is situated at the back of the superintendent building at the Cherbourg Ration Shed.

The elders decided the table would be placed there due to the historical significance behind the waiting area at the back of the superintendent's building.

"If the superintendent called for you on a day and met you out front it was okay, but if he asked you to go out the back you were in big trouble,” Mr Langton said.

The table is on display for visitors to see at the back of the Cherbourg Ration Shed Museum, which is open from 9am to 4pm on weekdays.

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