This chapter focuses on Central Queensland, the southern and middle portions of the mighty Fitzroy River catchment, which includes the Dawson, Comet, Nogoa and McKenzie Rivers. It examines the history of European settlement in this region, looking not only at the regional pattern of spread but also at the method of operation of particular properties. The advent of white settlement of Central Queensland was due in large measure to the journeys of exploration of two men: Ludwig Leichhardt and Thomas Mitchell. The chapter considers the attitudes of various land owners in this region to the Aboriginal people already resident there, and how and why these changed in a short period of time. It explores how events and attitudes in this region influenced the depth of the perceived zone of tension, in terms of the attitudes of those located hundreds of kilometres away in areas that had been settled for decades.