The Commercial Hotel in Longreach Queensland located at 102 Eagle Street, Longreach was owned and managed by the late James Joseph Judge (formerly Breheny) of Carracastle, County Mayo Ireland. It is believed possible that James received assistance to purchase his first hotel in Australia from his father in law, Henry Francis Rogers of Toobrack Station, Longreach Queensland in lieu of a parcel of land from this very large estate.
Henry Francis Judge (‘Harry’ my father) wondered why he and his older brother Jim Judge who spent many years living with and being brought up by the Grandfather Henry Frances Rogers and Maryann Healy of Toobrak, never were included in their estate. Harry believed that it may well have been because of the assistance his father had already received from his grandparents before they lost their daughter Ruby Judge (nee Rogers).
The hotel was particularly grand in its hey day. It had an expansive dinning room and engraved silverware, which remain in the family to this day. There lived to be 100 years old and sadly burnt down. The hotel has had a variety of owners since James Joseph and Ruby lived there. Henry Francis and Jim Judge were both born there and tragically lost their mother Ruby, when Harry was only three.
Today the hotel is immortalised in the famous Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame and is managed under the ownership of Mr R Gooding since 1983. It has 7 rooms (shared amenities etc), 19 motel rooms and 1 cabin. The owner is a friendly and informed publican, only too happy to share his knowledge of the history of this remarkable iconic Australian hotel.
James Joseph also went on to own the Clarence Hotel.