The Brass Monkey statue in Stanthorpe’s CBD is a famous little fellow that marks the town’s claim to get ‘cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey’. Stanthorpe district celebrates four seasons, the most popular being Brass Monkey Season during the winter months.
Not as crude as it may sound, the origin of the ‘cold enough to freeze the balls of the brass monkey’ saying originates by popular account from an occurrence on sailing ships, where the brass monkey was the name given to a metal rack used to store cannon balls.
The plaque that sits by the little Brass Monkey statue in Stanthorpe’s CBD reads “in long ago wars artillerymen had a brass plate called a monkey, which sat alongside the canon. The plate held 30 cannonballs stacked pyramid-like, until on freezing nights the monkey would shrink and the balls would fall off, hence the expression ‘cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey’.”
Right next to the Brass Monkey is an incredible mural depicting Angelo Valiante who turned 100 in the month of completion. Mr Valiante was one of the first Italians to settle in Stanthorpe and the work pays homage to the Italian community that have made the region what it is today. Find this and more Stanthorpe murals and street art here: https://www.srag.org.au/stanthorpe-street-art