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Carbrook lies between the Logan River and the southern border of the Redland Shire. It is east of Mount Cotton Road.
German immigrants who had previously lived in Bethania from 1864 moved to Carbrook. Christina Kruger was the first to settle the area in 1867, closely followed by Herman Meissner, Wilhelm Collin, Carl Haberman, August Fischer and others. They named the area Gramzow after a village in their homeland Prussia. Many other German families settled in nearby Mount Cotton and Redland Bay.
The local residents banded together to fund a church, which was built by Mount Cotton resident August Von Senden in 1876. The church, situated on the corner of Wuduru and Mount Cotton Roads, was built using brick and timber and is now part of the suburb of Cornubia. The winding road opposite, known as German Church Road, bought Redland Bay residents to the church. A cemetery on the site is the only remaining evidence of this important community centre.
Until the local school was established in November 1877, children had their lessons in the church. Children from the neighbouring district of Mount Cotton also attended.
Cotton growing was the first industry in the area and this was followed by sugar. A sugar mill was built on the western side of Skinners Reserve in 1872. It was known as the Logan Sugar Factory and was owned by Waterford resident Charles Wilson. In 1884, the sugar mill was sold to a consortium of local German farmers, who ran it until 1887 when it was offered for sale. River transport was important and a wharf reserve was gazetted on the river on an extension of Mount Cotton Road in 1887. The wharf had existed unofficially since the establishment of the Logan Sugar Factory.
The 1887 flood caused massive damage to riverfront properties, including the destruction of cane crops. The Alberton Ferry, which had been washed away in the floods, was relocated to Gramzow in 1889 for a short time.
A new sugar mill owned by Musch and Appel operated at Gramzow from 1905 until 1926.
During World War I, the name of the area was changed to Carbrook, primarily because of anti-German sentiment in Queensland. The Gramzow Post Office was taken away from August Stern. It was renamed and given to another resident of non-German descent.
Farm produce in the region included the growing and milling of:
Other industries included a blacksmith shop, which was operated by August Bahr and later Rudolph Bahr from about 1910 until the early 1930s. Musch and Appels' sugar mill was converted to a sawmill in the mid-1930s and operated until 1941. Arrowroot was grown in the region, with Herman Lehmann operating an arrowroot mill from 1918. He turned to timber getting during the 1930s, as did many others in the district.
Carbrook retains its rural atmosphere and much of the area is rural residential land. Areas for recreation include the Carbrook Golf Course and the Aquatic Gardens Water Ski Centre. Sand and gravel mining along the river is a major industry. Large areas of wetlands in the area have been reserved as conservation parks. A new private school, Calvary Christian College, operates not far from the Carbrook State School. Kimberley College relocated from Mount Cotton to establish its campus in Kruger Road in 2003. The original Carbrook School is now owned by the Logan City Council and is listed on the Queensland Heritage Register.