Maroochydore received its name from Andrew Petrie in 1842. The name is derived from the aboriginal word “Murukutchi-dha” which means red-bill, and you can thank the black swans that populate the area for it.
Maroochydore as it is now didn’t become established until the early 1900s, 1912 to be exact, and we owe its existence to William Pettigrew.
Pettigrew was an integral part of Maroochydore. He was a sawmill operator who first established a wharf and depot in Mooloolaba, then two decades later moved it into Maroochydore. He built the first house in the new town for one of his saw mill employees.
Although Pettigrew transferred the mill to Maroochydore in 1884 he closed it and liquidated his assets in 1898. The mill was re-opened in 1903, but the town itself still was not populated until 1912. That is when the first Coastal hotel opened and the first mail boat to Yandina began. Eight years later the population reached about 70 permanent residents. That is when school, churches, and business buildings were necessities.
The Maroochy River was used for transportation of goods because a road wasn’t developed until the early 1960s. Before the ‘60s the only mode of transportation was by boat or tram.
Maroochydore has great history and now has transformed into a booming locale that’s great for visitors and the residents that get to enjoy all the beauty of it every day.