Camp Darra

Camp Darra

Stage Number: MBSH.05.06.01

Group: Western

Local Study Area: Wacol-Richlands-Inala

Epoch: Early 20th Century

Street Address: Archerfield Road and Azalea Street, Inala

Latitude & Longitude: -27.59127778,152.96038889

Time Link: 1942

Map Link: TBA

Image Time Point: TBA

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Camp Darra was located off Archerfield Road near McEwan Park. It housed the labour for the U.S. Army Ordnance Depot, 1km away in what is now Forest Lake. There were four large wooden huts within the camp, 50 bell tents, a parade ground, and an open-air picture theatre (which Richlands residents were allowed to attend on Saturday nights). The military quartermasters bought much of the produce (fruit and vegetables and chickens) from local farms, and women earned extra money doing mending and laundry for the men.

The Ordnance Depot was manned predominately by units of 200 African-American soldiers under the direction of white officers. Relationships between the locals and the soldiers were generally good, although there was concern about what was perceived to be harsh treatment of the black soldiers by the white officers. There were accounts of excessive force and cruelty used by the officers, which combined with the enforced racial segregation created an atmosphere of resentment within the African-American units, leading to occasional outbreaks of violence. When the Americans left, the RAAF took over the camp while they cleared the ammunition dump. In 1946, the deserted huts provided a base for the short-lived Serviceton Ex-servicemen’s Co-operative.


Queensland Government, Queensland WWII Historic Places, ‘Camp Darra’ (, sighted 20 July 2017; Fred Clark and Vicki Mynott, ‘Serviceton: the Soldier Settlement that became Inala’, Inala Heights: Richlands, Inala and Suburbs History Group, 2007.

Image Citations

Darra Ordnance Depot in 1945. The soldiers based at Camp Darra worked at this depot. Oz@War (

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