The following article contains anecdotes from the effects of alcoholism, racial slurs, bribery and corruption - we are after all reminiscing about Boydies Mount Isas Hotel Boyd.
On opening day in December 1951, Jim Boyd specifically targeted mine workers as his new clientele by pulling free beers for an hour at the end of each mine shift (8am-9am: 4pm-5pm: and midnight to 1am).
He started as he intended to continue, to push the boundaries of the liquor licensing laws, and possibly a quiet bribe or two to the local constabulary, to his benefit by reopening for an hour at midnight so that the afternoon shift workers got their free beer.
At the end of both the night and day shifts, drinkers were backed up from the bar to the footpaths of Marion and West Streets, as they enjoyed his largesse while country visitors, during opening week, received complimentary accommodation for their first night at the hotel.
Boydies led the way in live entertainment by establishing a beer garden, in 1959, for the enjoyment of patrons who wished to quick step around the room before enjoying a tipple.
An orderly crowd of more than 300 attended the opening night of the new beer garden featuring the Percy Ohling quartet and vocalist Claude Mace in the Boyd Show.
Years later, it was the Disco Lounge and the suave carpet walled Cazbah that drew the young trendsetters of the 70s and 80s to Boydies.
But no need to add pub to its title, locals and visitors alike knew exactly where it was located and its line of trade beer, beer, glorious thirst quenching cold beer with a Bundy chaser thrown in for good measure.
Such was its fame that visitors to town just had to have a beer at Boydies so they could go home and tell their friends that they had a beer at Boydies in the Isa.
But when Queensland Senator Neville Bonner popped into the pub for a quiet one in December, 1977, he was told by a barmaid, We dont serve darkies here.
I walked down the street from my motel, picked up a paper and dropped into the hotel for a cold beer, he said.
I sat at the bar reading and it was a few minutes before a barmaid came over to me and said, Im sorry, I cant serve you.
He told her he was an Australian citizen and that she must be joking.
Senator Bonner was an Aborigine and, the unwritten rule at Boydies was, Aboriginals were expected to drink in the Snake Pit, not the public bar let alone private bar where he was sitting.
Finally sense prevailed and Senator Bonner was given a cold, froth topped pulled beer but not before he asked the manager, Are you aware youre liable to a penalty of $5,000 under the Race Discrimination Act for refusing to serve a person because of their colour or nationality?
National pride was often at the core of many a drunken flare up, particularly amongst the Wogs, Croatians, Yugoslavs and Czechs from the Baltic regions who were rumoured to rather have a fight than a feed.
It was at times like these you would imagine that being a female licensee of a hotel would produce many challenges particularly in the field of bar room brawling.
But not so for Joyce Boyd who was quick to assert her authority when she produced a solid waddy from under the counter, a ploy that more often than not, won her respect amongst the drinkers.
Come rodeo time, Boydies was a scene right out of a Hollywood western cowboy picture as the best fights in town would tumble out of the swinging doors of the public bar.
The infamous Snake Pit later named Diamond Lils, may have given drinkers a headache with different names, but it was still the same venue, same drinkers, same fun and same fights year in and year out.
It was left to folk-lore boxing legend, entrepreneur, and musician Larry del a Hunty, to referee fights before he bounced the loser out of the canvas covered fencing wire confines of the Snake Pit.
But not all confrontations were of a fighting nature, as was evidenced when local larrikin, James Watt rode his horse into the public bar, for a beer.
Or when the reigning 1972 Miss Australia Randy Baker, turned a mundane fund-raising dinner, held upstairs in the newly refurbished Skyline Restaurant, into a more lively event by offering to kiss the highest bidder.
And it was the first hotel in North West Queensland to introduce the new counter meals in each of the bars.
This new concept coincided with the return of the 11oz beer back into Queensland hotels.
The three Mount Isa hotels charged one shilling and ten pence (1/-10) in public bars for an 11oz beer, while the private bars paid a penny more (1/11) and for drinkers in lounges or beer gardens they paid a whopping two shillings (2/-).
And while the physical jostling may have happened within the hotel, a regular paper war was conducted between the Boyd family and local authorities.
Be it the inequity of water rates or the construction of an underground mens toilet in Marian Street, or liquor licensing laws alongside police bribery and corruption, the Boyd family were indifferent to their hotels infamy, so long as people continued to drink at Boydies.
No hotel before or since has had such an impact on the local social scene or attracted national notoriety quite like the Hotel Boyd.
There was the Top Pub (Mount Isa Hotel), the Bottom Pub (Argent Hotel) and in between on the corners of West and Marian Streets stood the iconic Hotel Boyd - Boydies
Researched and written by Kim-Maree Burton www.kimmareeburton.com
Photographs courtesy of Mount Isa City Library and North Queensland History Collections.
Information sourced from Cloncurry Advocate, Mt Isa Mail, Canberra Times, Sydney Morning Herald, Brisbane Courier Mail and the North West Star.
The weekly history column can also be accessed online at www.northweststar.com.au