Morningside, a residential suburb on Wynnum Road, is five km east of central Brisbane. Travel by road or rail is considerably further.
In 1889 the South Brisbane to Cleveland railway line was opened, and the Bulimba railway station was situated at the present position of Morningside. The line provoked the Bulimba Railway Station estate (1888), but the name Morningside soon took on. An early European settler, David Longlands, owned the Morningside Estate (Wynnum, Thynne, Lytton and Junction Roads). The inspiration for the name was apparently the sight of nearby hills catching the rising sun, or the locality being on the morning (eastern) side of Brisbane.
A brick Methodist church in Thynne Road was opened in 1902. The area remained beyond the limits of metropolitan Brisbane until the years after World War I. A tannery (1876) was positioned beside some waterholes south of the railway line and continued there until 1900. Away to the north in Colmslie, a plague hospital (1900) and a stock quarantine facility were built. The area was named after Colmslie House (1881) near the corner of Thynne and Lytton Roads, built by Captain William Cairncross.
In the 1920s a school of arts (1926) and a picture theatre were opened around the railway station. A State primary school, near Balmoral and Hawthorne but in Morningside, was opened in 1923. (Balmoral Park and Balmoral Cemetery are also inside Morningside's western boundary.) Balmoral Shire had its offices in Wynnum Road east of the station and there was a row of shops which included four stores, a fish shop, a bootmaker, a butcher, a chemist and a motor garage.
From under 2000 people in 1920, Morningside had nearly 5000 by the early postwar years. Evidence of the healthy growth was signified by four butchers instead of one in Wynnum Road, and a child health centre. The theatre and the school of arts - a handsome brick building on its own reserve - were the cultural attractions. Local employment was found at the Cairncross graving dock (1944) in Colmslie and at the Cannon Hill saleyards.
With a population climbing to 11,000 for Morningside and Cannon Hill by the 1960s, the Wynnum Road shopping strips were ripe for competition. Arndale built a drive-in shopping centre, midway between the two, in 1969, at the Junction Road corner opposite the Colmslie Hotel. Known as Morningside Central (really in-between) it has become the district's retail and commercial centre.
In addition to Morningside's primary school there are secondary schools on its borders, Balmoral High and Cannon Hill Anglican College. A short distance from the primary school on Pashen Street there is the heritage-listed Balmoral fire station (1927).
Morningside's census populations have been:
(with part of Cannon Hill detached)
Denise Austin, From pasture to pastorate, Morningside, Morningside Uniting Church, 2002
History of the Bulimba Electorate 1859-1959, Brisbane, Cranbrook Press, 1959
Morningside State School 1926-1976, Morningside, Queensland, 1976